Tag Archives: gratitude

38 to Date

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In honor of my 38th birthday, I want to share 38 things I am thankful for:

1. Jesus’ sacrifice: Glory, glory! 

2. My two precious boys: 17 and 5-my first, my last, my everything!

3. Loving students: They alone make my job worth the stress. 

4. Kindness: I have received a lot of kindness over the last few months that it has encouraged me to pay it all forward. 

5. The gift of another year: Hallelujah! 

6. Good friends: Shanna, Karen, Champale, Manita, and Hasina

7. Good food ūüėč: I love to eat and cook. I have a whole list of new restaurants that I plan to explore over the year. 

8. All of the birthday wishes and gifts I received today. Some were so unexpected but well received. 

9. A good cup of coffee: I had the most delicious coffee to date in the Dominican Republic and I’ve been on a quest since then to find another. 

10. Heat: What more can I say? Baby, it’s cold outside! 

11. Books: I love to read and I must say that books make me feel alive. 

12. Dear family: I do t have a lot nor am I close to them all, but despite it all, I am thankful to share blood ties with such a motley crew of people. 

13. A career: I am a rose who grew from concrete. I was determined to succeed and by His grace, I did. 

14. Health insurance: It saddens me that not everyone has this basic necessity. If you’ve ever been ill, you know just how vital it is. 

15. Technology: It allows me to stay connected to the ones I love whether near or far. 

16. Forgiveness: Thankful to God for extending it to me with condition. Also thankful for those who have forgiven my wrongs. 

17. Student loan deferments: LOL

18. Mercy: Thank you Lord. 

19.  Socks: I have a hard time walking in surfaces without them. It creeps me out, lol. 

20. Clean drinking water: In light of the water tragedy in Flint, it makes me thankfu for this “small” thing that we take for granted. 

21. Grocery stores: The convenience and array of goods is simply amazing. 

22. The sky: I have been fascinated with the sky for a while 

23. The color pink: It makes me feel so feminine

24. Safe transportation: My grandmother nor my mother knew how to drive. Thus is astounding to me considering the myriad of places I go on a weekly basis. Even though I hate pumping gas and taking the time to have the oil changed-I’m so thankful that when I need to go somewhere, I can simply get up and go. 

25. Coconut milk: This drink has been giving me all the B12 I need to have energy. 

26. Smiles: A simple does wonders for the soul. 

27. Hugs: Love them. 

28. Worship music: A good song puts me right in the Upper Room with the Lord. 

29. Winters that eventually turn into spring

30. Vision: I wear contacts so I know how it feels to have less than 20/20 vision. But I’m so thankful for the ability to see the beauty all around me. 

31. Making a difference: My job is often thankless drudgery. But just knowing that I may possibly make a difference gets me going. 

32. Ice skating: I’ve had such fun taking and teaching my boys how to skate. 

33. Flowers: I love blooms of all kind, especially tulips. They make me feel girly and loved.  

34. Chloe-My precious pooch is the girl child I’ve never had. She came in my life at a very barren, bleak time. Love that dog! 

35. Lessons: I’ve had some tough ones, no doubt. But without them, I would not have the deep sense of gratitude that I have for some things. 

36. Oceans: The ocean is such a magnificent sight to behold. I feel so in awe and in touch with God when I get the chance to partake in its beauty. 

37. Laughter: Tis is a beautiful thing. It is truly a healing balm. 

38. A good heart: Thankfully God judges our heart. I am not perfect, but my heart is good and strives to do the right thing. 

   
    
    
    
   

35 and Still Alive!

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Tuesday was my birthday. I didn’t go all out. I worked and went home and that was alright with me. I’m simply grateful to see another day. With that in mind, here are 35 things that I am thankful for:

1. Health

2. My two children

3. Family

4. Friends

5. Education

6. Students

7. Transportation

8. Flowers

9. A good meal

10. Beaches

11. Photographs

12. Doctors

13. Grocery stores

14. Clean drinking water

15. Insurance (medical, auto, home, and life)

16. Smiles

17. Texting

18. Kindness

19. Work

20. Blogging

21. Warm blankets

22. Hot water

23. Google

24. Tea

25. Pen and paper

26. Hope

27. Seasons

28. Resiliency

29. Saturdays

30. Growth

31. Forgiveness

32. Books

33. Sleeping in

34. Laughter

35. God’s love

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5 Things

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My lovely friend Stacy likes to¬†post 5 positive things that have happened to her that day.¬† At the turn of the year, I started writing 3 things, got discouraged, and gave up.¬† Sometimes it is hard to see the light…today she inspired me to try.¬† Here is my list for yesterday:

1.¬† I was on time for work: At my job if you are even a minute late, you have to conference with the Big (literally and figuratively) Boss.¬† I don’t like her and have no desires to dialogue with her.

2.¬† Cleaned the aquarium:¬†A yucky, time-consuming job–but somebody has to do it.

3.  A Surprise Call:  My cousin El called to see how I was doing, which was nice and unexpected.

4.¬† Texting: I love this form of communication and it’s easy to send a cheerful message or get some instant support.

5.  Living in America:  Even on our worst days, we Americans live so much better than our counterparts in third world countires.

For Once!

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Fisrt off I would like to thank everyone for the uplifting comments on Just Once…¬† It really meant a¬†great deal to me.

I was feeling pretty down this past week.¬† Husband was¬†ill¬†and I¬†put¬†him in quarantine¬† in our bedroom so the rest of us wouldn’t get sick.¬† Ian and Imani kept asking for him.¬† They were not used to him being holed up where they couldn’t interact with him.¬† I just couldn’t risk everyone getting sick at the same time.

Friday I picked up Kierra for the weekend.¬† That’s right Kierra was over until Sunday evening.¬† I couldn’t believe it but it happened!

Saturday I worked most of the day.  My grandmother kept the kids for us and Kierra went to a birthday party. 

Sunday morning I cried and cried.¬† Not because I was upset about my situation.¬† I was crying because for once everything was okay.¬† Husband had a long conversation about everyday being Mother’s Day.¬† He told me over and over how much I was loved.¬† How he was so happy that I was his wife and mother to all of his children.¬† He told me that I had a special heart.¬† That I love and take care of¬†children that I do not have any obligation to take care of.¬† He expressed how he falls in love with me over and over again because of who I am.¬† He told me to enjoy my day and not to worry about him.¬† He would take care of himself.¬† So you see why I cried so much?

The kids and I got dressed and took off for the mall.¬† We ate lunch at Houlihan’s.¬† Then we stopped at my brother’s for awhile.¬† When we came home I checked on Husbandand made sure he was alright.

Since Husband was sick he didn’t get to take the kids to get me anything for Mother’s Day.¬† Little did I know, he gave Kierra money to buy cards from the three of them and if I found anything that I liked to buy that, too.¬† Shortly after we arrived home they all presented me with cards that they picked out themselves, without any help from Husband.¬† They were so beautiful.¬† Especially the one from Kierra.¬† I started crying all over again!¬†

Aside from Husband being sick my Mother’s Day was great!¬† No worries, no drama, no sadness…For Once!

The Sisterhood

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There are places in cyberspace where sisters of all ages, creeds, and colors meet up as often as they can for a little girl talk, motivation, support, love, candor, and fun.

This is only one such place. 

You all are like sisters to me! After I read the comments left on Date Night I started laughing, then I started crying.  I cried out of sadness  (just the fact that I even have to date) but more so out of gratitude.  I am so thankful that you all have been here with me.  It has been a long, strange trip, my friends!  Who knew that I would begin as stepmom and end up Ms. Singlemama?

Maybe God knew (of course He did) that I would need this circle of love to get me through a very tender season?  Blogging has no doubt helped carry me through the abysss.

I take your advice and suggestiions to heart because I know you gals want the best for me and vice versa.  I just value you ALL beyond belief!!! So I thank you Stacy, Joy, Doraz, Suzanne, Justaglimpse, Rhonda, Leila, Crys, Been There, Dragonflymama, Serendip, Kweenmama, Starla, Old Freind, Kelly, Destined,  Natalie, Yo, Amy, and anyone else that I forgot to mention who has been kind enough to leave a comment on this blog!

One love,

Morocco

Saved!

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Wait, I say on the Lord! Psalms 27:14

Yesterday I was cooking when I received a call from The Neighbor a.k.a¬†Rear Window ( as in the Alfred Hitchcock¬†movie)¬†telling me that Nicholas was very high up in one of our trees and he didn’t want him to get hurt.¬† Jazmine was sitting on the floor flipping through a book.¬† I ran out side to see and to my dismay and horror, he was way up there!¬† I yelled for him to get down immediatedly!¬† Nicholas replied he was on his way down, but he couldn’t have anyone watching because it made him nervous.¬† I relunctantly went back inside and turned down the eye on the stove.

When I went back out, he was closer to the ground.  I was so relieved when he finally touched down.  I explained to him not to climb in any more trees without me being present.  Had he fallen, he would have really hurt himself!  That was the last thing I needed!  I also told him it was time to come in.

By this time Rear Window was outside with his two children.¬† When we got to the door it was closed.¬† Not only was it closed, it was locked!¬† I didn’t panic right away because I had my cell phone with me.¬† Plus, I thought I could talk Jazmine through unlocking the door.¬† No such luck.¬† When she figured out that we were not able to get in, she started crying.¬† I stood on the other side talking to her.

I began to worry when I heard the timer go off.  That meant the smothered chicken was finished cooking.  I saw visions of flames and smoke, sure that the pan would burn and set the house on fire.  I also thought that Jazmine might try to turn off the timer and burn herself in the process.  If nothing else, I was sure that our dinner would be ruined. I grew extremely frazzled!

I called my uncle who has a spare ¬†keyand he said “I’m on my way.”¬† I called a couple friends to share my dilemma while Nicholas entertained Jazmine.¬† Kara cracked jokes to help alleviate my worries.¬† Schappelle prayed.

My uncle arrived twenty minutes later and we were saved!¬† Jazmine sat by the door looking forlorn.¬† My uncle picked her up while I turned the eye off.¬† The food was perfect!¬† I was a little surprised considering it simmered for thirty minutes longer than it should have.¬† It wasn’t even scorched!

From this experience I learned that I need to have more faith.  I must believe that all things will work out for the good.  God has the most unique ways of reminding us that he is in control!

Blessings

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I received three¬†“surprise” blessings today:

  • I took Nicholas to the dentist (it was a blessing to even get in as when I called last week to make the appointment, they were booked until¬†summer!¬† But when¬†I called yesterday, someone had cancelled at the perfect time)¬†and I did not have to pay the usual $40 copay.¬† I had an unexpected credit on my account!
  • I received a¬†letter from the bank saying that I had quite an excess in¬†my escrow account and I will be reimbursed soon!
  • A coworker surprised me with lunch!

These are¬†all small things, but nevertheless, it feels so good for these things to¬† have happened to me!¬† I’m thankful!

Overwhelmed

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One of my coworkers has made it her mission to cheer me up.  She has went over and beyond to do so.  My heart is really touched by her generosity and selflessness.  Here are a few things she has done; although I am probably forgetting something because she has done SO much!

  • She was my Secret Santa for a week¬†(I did not even sign up)
  • She made me lunch and dinner several weeks in a row
  • She organized a group of coworkers to buy my lunch for a week straight
  • When I was sleep starved and not feeling well for two days¬†she allowed me to bring all of my classes to the media center
  • For Christmas she gave me movie theatre and restaurant gift certificates
  • She invited¬†us to her sister’s for Christmas dinner
  • She bought me a fancy journal and pen because she knows that I like to write
  • She attended the wake
  • For my birthday she bought cupcakes for all 135¬†of my students!¬† She also gave me a gift certificate to an upscale¬†restaurant
  • She has volunteered her babysitting services
  • Just today she presented me with an autographed copy of one of my favorite books!

How do you thank a person like this?  I wanted to do something from the heart; so I made her one of my special framed acrostic poems and presented it to her.  She loved it!

A small token of my appreciation

A small token of my appreciation

Shoveling Tears

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“…You will surely wear yourself out.¬† For this thing is too much for you; you are not able to perform it by yourself.” Exodus 18:18

The unpleasant part¬†of snow is the act of shoveling it.¬† And with the¬†twelve inches we received, there was a lot to¬†clear.¬†¬† I didn’t realize just how much until I was knee deep in it with my lone shovel.¬† My neighbors on both sides were out working as well.¬† One¬†even had a snow plow but only cleared his driveway and the¬†space in front of their house.

Looking at the couples working together made me so blue that I started crying.  It was another reminder for me that my husband was dead.  I turned up my Ipod and my resolve and tried to focus on finishing the daunting task of clearing our lengthy driveway.  My back and legs were starting to ache from heaving the heavy snow.

I had a ways to go when my neighbor from across the¬†cul de sac came over, shovel in hand, and starting helping.¬† Much of the time we worked alongside one another¬†in silence¬†as day turned¬†to dusk.¬† He encouraged me to go on in, but¬† I couldn’t leave him to do¬†my job alone.¬†¬† He had already¬†worked a full day, shoveled his own¬†drive, and then came to help with ours–three times the size of his.¬†I felt:

  • Gratitude for his kindness
  • Sadness that my husband couldn’t shovel with me
  • Blessed that God put it on his heart to do so
  • Embarrassment for being a damsel in distress

I also wondered how I could pay him back?¬† I hate the feeling of “owing” someone.¬† Thank you just seems so…well, not enough.¬† But then I thought about a few¬† of the neighborly¬†exchanges we’ve had over the years.¬† During the fall we would always send one of the boys over¬†to help him in the yard.¬† I had also¬†given his toddlers sons a barely used¬†expensive train table.¬† And when his teenage son often¬†lost his key, we always welcomed him to sit at our house until someone came home.

So maybe he was just paying it forward. 

I know I need to learn how to accept help and be okay with it.  Could this be why God keeps putting me in predicaments where I need assistance from others in order for me to get over myself?

Still,¬†I think I’ll make cookies for him and his family to show my appreciation…

To Her, with Love

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I have received such an outpouring of love from students both past and present.  Upon learning of my loss, I have had mounds of student visitors bearing cards, teddy bears, flowers, and plants.  Not to mention the  myraid of text messages and phone calls I have gotten. 

There have been so many former students visiting me in the last couple of weeks that the staff has been forced to escort various groups to my class.¬† Typically visitors are asked to come during a prep or teacher’s lunch, but I guess I must look like I need cheering up because they have definitely relaxed the policy for me.¬†¬†

I was a bit surprised how quickly word spread.¬† However, when I learned that the majority found out through a current student’s message of condolence for me on her¬†Facebook page, I smiled.¬† The kids put¬†everything important to them online.¬†¬† This act¬†spurred text messages sent and forwarded to any student who has ever had me as a teacher.

I have barely had an appetite and have eaten little here recently.  I was quite touched earlier in the week when Ashley, one of my students who comes to my room for our lunch period placed a bag of chips in front of me.  She shyly explained that she had to make sure that I ate something becasue she has noticed that I no longer eat.

Really, I am filled with such gratitude and awe¬†that they care¬†so much about me.¬† A teacher couldn’t ask for anything more.¬† I know exactly how Sally Fields¬†felt when she uttered those lines after winning the Oscar.¬† Not only do they like me, they love me!