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Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Ten Simple Things

I’m sure you’ve all heard the expression “It’s the simple things in life.”  It seems, though, that we don’t always take the time to truly appreciate them. Some of these simple things might even be stuff we really don’t care for, at least not without a moment or two to pause and reflect on why we should.  Take, for example, pollen; that icky-yellow powder that coats our cars and houses every spring, boosting sales of allergy medicine and tissue alike.  It’s not exactly the first thing I’d put on my own top ten list of simple things I’m thankful for, but it probably should be on the list. somewhere. Why? Well pollen season means the start of spring. And I love spring. Flowers, green leaves, bees buzzing around making honey for me to buy at the local farmers market…spring wouldn’t be spring without it. Still, when all is said and done I’m not a huge fan of pollen. I’d be willing to put it on my list though. Maybe somewhere down around nine hundred ninety-nine or a thousand ;-) The point is that it is there on that list. It’s just not something I think about often. I mean who goes out in the morning, turns on their windshield washers on their car to clean the thick coating of dandelion-yellow powder off enough to see, and goes: Thank you, Pollen, for bringing me spring!  Not many of us, right?  

This Monday’s tragedy of the Boston Marathon really made me think about the simple things I take for granted in my life. After hearing of the courage and kindness displayed by so many of the people present there, it seemed appropriate that I challenge myself to be a little stronger, a little braver, a little more appreciative. To that end, whenever I am feeling frustrated or overwhelmed or downright moody, I’ve made a resolution to take a deep breath and come up with three simple things that I have to be thankful for. Three things that when I pause and reflect will make me smile and hopefully move on with my day with my head high and a smile on my face. I do this for me. I do this for the people I see this day. And I do this to honor the three lives lost in Boston.  Here are ten of these simple things that I’ve come up with so far that I’d like to share with you:

1. Bird songs in the morning…no matter how early.

2. Good morning kisses and hugs from my kids before they get on the bus.

3. A purring cat on my lap "helping" me work.

4. Hydrangeas that seem to thrive despite my brown thumb.

5. A house full of noisy children that mark the end to my writing day.

6. Sand in my washing machine…because it came from moments like this:

7. Orange and blue fingers from tie-dying 28 shirts for my daughter’s class…a small price to pay for being part of my children’s lives.

8. A quiet evening walk with my husband.

9. Spring peepers, crickets, and cicadas that lull me to sleep.

10. Hearts left in the butter to be found later. Thank you, my beautiful girl. I love you, too!


How about you? Can you come up with at least three simple things that you are thankful for today?

Lady Hellion


  1. What a beautiful post, Tes. Honoring the courage of those heroes in Boston is so important for helping us make it through tragedies like this.

    Three simple things that make me happy this morning...
    My daughter's big, extra long hug before she left for school this morning.
    My hubby's good humor. He rarely wakes in a bad mood.
    My perfect cup of coffee.

    1. Those are some great things, Samantha. I think the three together should make the day just about perfect ;-)

  2. Thank you, Tes, for reminding us of the simple things in life.

    For me, this morning, they are:

    Listening to music on the drive in;
    Checking in on my daughter as she's sleeping--she's adorable when she sleeps;
    Having coffee with my husband in the morning before work.

    1. Lily,

      I love checking on my kids when they're sleeping. Even my twelve year old still looks like an angel when he sleeps.

  3. The simple things are everything to me. Sitting beside my hubby at night, listening to birds sing as spring comes around, feeling sunshine on my face, and the feel of my dogs' fur between my fingers are some of my favorites :)

    1. Great list, Erin! I was just outside turning my face up into the sunshine. :-D

  4. Hmmm...simple things I'm thankful for? A cool shower after a workout. Cat drool on my shirt, because it means my cat loves me even if it is disgusting. Coffee. A comfy chair to read in. :)

    1. LOL! Cat drool on the shirt is awesome. my cat's pretty drool free but I remember wearing baby drool (among other stuff) like a badge of honor.

  5. Oh Tess,
    What a beautiful post. I was just thinking the very same thing as well after the tragedy in Boston. I'd actually created a list in my mind to focus on that beauty instead of the ugliness that oftentimes consumes us.
    1. At the top of my list, my son's laughter. it's unrivaled. Truly. : )
    2. Fridays when, together with my husband we leave work to go get our son at school on Fridays. There is no better feeling. And he does this sweet thing where he waves his arms wildly and says "Friday!" And he knows that we'll have beautiful time together!
    3. Cut grass. It signifies the start of spring and summer!
    4. The moonlight reflecting off the ocean. One of the most beautiful sights.

    1. Christi, I answer to both ;-) I can feel the power of your love for that precious boy of yours. I always wished i could bottle up my children's laughter to uncork later when I needed a pick-me-up. It probably wouldn't have the same effect though when taken out of the moment.

  6. I am thankful for:

    1. My good health
    2. To be married to the love of my life
    3. For my wonderful family
    4. To be retired in beautiful southern Florida
    5. For my two lovable kitties
    6. For books!

    1. Hear, hear, Connie! Those are all great, though you had me at books ;-) Thanks for sharing your list!

  7. That was a lovely post Tes. It is hard to think of them some days but there really are so many things to be thankful for. I used to post my 5 thankful things at the end of every day. I should really get back to doing that.

    So today...

    1) that my turtle Roma is back in her pond for the summer (she hates being in a tank and has been basking all day)
    2) finding the perfect water bottle (it opens for ice, opens just to drink, is dishwasher safe, leak proof and is pretty to boot)
    3) waking up to a purring and content kitty draped over me :)

  8. love the butter note!
    1. driving alone with the music blasting, windows down
    2. thunderstorms
    3. watching TV comedy with the whole family.

  9. Tes ~ Actually, I make it habit to say every day what I'm thankful for:

    1 - My wonderful son, who still loves me despite being 15
    2 - My wonderful Scientist, who may not be perfect, but who is perfect for me
    3 - His sweet daughter, whose trust in me warms my heart
    4 - The roof over my head. It might not be the most magnificent roof, but it does keep me warm (when its not inhabited by unwed pregnant squirrels)
    5 - My job. Both of them. I get to live in my own world every night as I write, and I get to live in the real world with people who keep me grounded during the day
    6 - The best friends in the world. My friends, the ones who've kept me sane when my world fell down around me. They know who they are, and they know I could never love them more than I do.
    7 - My family (minus my SIL, who can go hang). They might drive me crazy from time to time, but they're mine and I love them.

    I could go on and one, but you only asked for 3 and I've already doubled that. :)

  10. Oh this is so easy for me. I give my thanks to those simply things daily.
    1. The kids, Sophia, Samantha, Elijah, and Jimmy....they are often times the light at the end of a dark day.
    2. I am thankful every morning that I wake up and know that I'm still here.
    3. I'm thankful for my family that keeps me on my toes.
    4. I'm thankful to all of the wonderful authors who pen books that give me an escape from the real world.
    I could go on and on, but alas I think I will keep it brief.

  11. Great reminder to cherish our gifts, Tes.
    After my niece was diagnosed with cancer at 3 years old, I realized the health of my children was my biggest blessing.
    2) My husband's love and support.
    3) That I still have both of my parents. I dread that it will change one day.
    4) The amazing writing community I'm so lucky to be a part of.