For Thanksgiving last year, I wrote out a list of 100 things to be thankful for. This year, I decided to turn it into an annual tradition. It fits nicely into the weekly photo challenge from WordPress of “thankful”. I’m enjoying the weekly photo challenges – I’ve made new friends, seen a lot of very good work, and had a place to showcase some of my photography.
My family is (again) on the top of the list. Although my favorite boy toy and I are having typical health issues due to our age and weight, we are nonetheless overall pretty healthy. My daughter continues to be happy with her job and is currently dating a really nice guy. My niece graduated college and we continue to be penpals.
My photography is mentioned frequently. I upgraded my software to using Lightroom 4 as well as Adobe Photoshop CS6. I’m now shooting in raw and have experimented with night photography. My post processing skills have improved a lot as well. I am also thankful for the field trips I took for photographs and the variety of things I was able to photograph.
Food got listed several times. My favorite boy toy and I tried new foods this year, from green smoothies to homemade pizza to cheese courses for dessert. We hadn’t done that before our vacation last week and it was quite good!
Work continues to go well. My employer is profitable, tax season went smoothly and the quarterly / annual close continue to improve. Although we still work a fair amount of overtime, it’s nothing like it used to be. There’s less drama, less hand wringing, and the stress has been much more manageable except on the very worst of days. Previously, the stress was terrible each and every day. That’s a huge improvement.
Possessions usually get a mention, not because I’m materialistic but because they often make my life easier or more enjoyable. I am thankful for my camera (I know, not new, but I love it), our new bed, and some new small appliances in our kitchen. It’s made food preparation much easier.
Six months ago, I shared about my struggle with gratitude. A number of you gave me some really good feedback, which I took time to process and write out in a series of posts about discouragement. Since then, I’ve found gratitude to be much easier. I also picked up a new word to use in my life – serene. Both words are helping keep me centered and much happier.
Thankfulness is not just for Thanksgiving. It’s an everyday thing and the more I practice it, the happier I am. Writing it in my journal and creating a record in my blog gives me something to review on days I need encouragement.
Whether you share it or keep it private, I’d encourage you to create your own list of 100 things to be thankful for. It’s a snapshot of your life at this moment and a record of what is right in your life. How much better does it get than that?