November 11, 2013

30 Days of Thankfulness

I can't believe it is November again already.
Confession: I never took down last year's Thankful Tree.
I wanted to save those adorable little hands that perfectly captured a month of the twins most important things, but I hadn't figured out exactly how yet.  I didn't want to take them down before I had it figured out for fear I would lose them.  So I left them up.  Plus, the wall would look really empty (Almost all of my walls look empty.  Like we just moved in.  I have trouble committing to wall art).  But then it was the beginning of November again, so I had to take the leaves off the tree and put them somewhere safe until I figured out exactly the best way to save them.  At least it will be in place for me to take down this year's thankful tree...although I will probably leave it up all year again...

This year I felt myself longing for November.  I couldn't wait.  When I immerse myself in gratitude, it seems to overflow to everything.  It's almost as if I suddenly can't find anything for which I wouldn't be thankful.  This year, October was emotionally exhausting and I was desperate for the deep peace and joy that accompanies an attitude of gratitude.  So far, it has been successful.  It makes me wonder why I wait for November?  Maybe, like Christmas in July, I should start celebrating Thanksgiving in June...

Anyway, without further ado, our first week of Thankfuls.

November 1
Me: Lots of Cleaning.  It made me laugh when I remembered that was a common theme last November.  Perhaps November is when I truly do my fall cleaning?  With the twins helping so much lately, it has freed me up to do some of the deep cleaning that tends to fall by the wayside - like cleaning my kitchen and bathroom cabinets with Murphy's or removing stains from carpet.  Every deep cleaning project I accomplish makes me feel lighter.
Allie: Cera & Baby Cera.  Cera is a stuffed TriCERAtops that my dad gave me when I was little.  My parents kept it and Allie claimed it as hers this past year.  Then she got a small stuffed triceratops on a trip to the zoo, and that became Baby Cera.  Currently, we have a whole triceratops family, but these two are her favorite.  I love how much she loves one of my favorite childhood toys.
Ryan: Ruffster & Bumble.  I'm sure Bumble is fairly self-explanatory (isn't it great that he is still a favorite?!), but are you confused about Ruffster?  So was I.  Ruffster is Lightning's dog.  You didn't know Lightning McQueen had a dog?  He doesn't.  Not in the movies.  But Ryan's Lightning adopted one of Ryan's small toy dogs.  According to Ryan, he was broken-hearted when Ruffster decided he wanted to be Lightning's dog instead of Ryan's.  But now it makes him happy that Lightning and Ruffster are happy.

November 2
Me: A Baby Fix.  We were at the birthday party of one of the twins' little friends.  Another one of the mothers there (who I have hung out with a few times) was there alone with her three boy - all under three.  I watched her trying to keep up with the 3 year old and 18-month old while holding the baby and figured the least I could do was offer to hold the baby and free up her hands.  Thankfully, she took me up on the offer.  The result was an extended time of baby holding.  I got to feed him and burp him and hold him while he napped.  Pure heaven.  The mom was worried that she was inconveniencing me until Lucas informed her that I am a known baby hog and she should feel free to demand her baby back whenever she wanted him!
Allie: Thanksgiving coming up.  It didn't take long for them to get caught up in all of the Halloween Hoopla that preceded the holiday.  They were pretty disappointed when it was over.  Excited about another holiday (and the hoopla that comes along with it), Allie is anticipating Thanksgiving.  I haven't told her yet that our Thankful Tree is about all the hoopla there is aside from the actual day...
Ryan: 2 Lightnings and Mack.  Ryan has several Lightning McQueen cars, but apparently 2 that are extra special.  Mack is the semi that carries Lightning in the movie.  Ryan doesn't have an actual Mack (like the licensed character toy) but he does have a car carrying semi that takes the Lightnings wherever they need to Ryan's room...
November 3
Me: The Grandpas & Grandmas.  Every couple of months, our church is responsible for doing a service at a local Assisted Living.  It is always one of my favorite things.  Maybe because I used to be an Activity Director and it makes me feel like I'm back in my element.  Maybe because the twins always sing a song and they are so stinking cute.  Maybe because the residents adore my children almost as much as I do (and many told me they come to our services specifically to see the twins - they've watched them grow up!).  I enjoy the time of fellowship with the residents (whom the twins call the Grandpas and Grandmas) and I enjoy taking the twins giving them the opportunity to entertain and interact with the residents.  I want my children to have as deep a love for Seniors as I have!  My favorite part is at the end when they shake every resident's hand and say, "I'm happy to see you!"  So cute.
Allie:  Nana &Poppy.  The first family to make the list!  I should add that, although there wasn't enough room to write this on the hand-leaf, she specifically said, "Nana who is all alone at home and Poppy who is all alone on the boat."
Ryan: Lightning's Grandma.  Much like Allie has created a family out of her various stuffed triceratops, Ryan has created a family out of his various Lightning McQueen cars.  Apparently, one of them is Lightning's Grandma and he is very thankful Lightning has her.
November 4
Me: A Morning Off.  Normally, we have playgroup on Monday mornings.  This particular Monday it was supposed to be at our house.  I sent the reminder out early the previous week though (I was so proud of myself for being so organized) and, as a result, everyone forgot by the time Monday rolled around!  But I really enjoyed having a surprise free morning to catch up on some things.  I've been working on clearing out places and de-cluttering. It was a great opportunity to get some of that done.  And the twins and I baked muffins!  They love to help in the kitchen, so it was fun to take some time to do one of their favorite activities together.
Allie: Papa & Gigi.  Always careful to keep things even, she couldn't bear to have one set of grandparents on the tree without the other.  And she is genuinely thankful for her 4 doting grandparents.
Ryan: Baby Bumble.  Like his family of Lightnings, he has a family of caterpillars.  Baby Bumble is the small version of his beloved Bumble.
November 5
Me: Free Time.  Every Tuesday, while the twins are in preschool, I have my morning.  Wednesday, I have Bible Study and Thursday I always have various errands or Sunday School lesson prep or something, but Tuesday is mine.  This particular morning, I enjoyed the beautiful fall weather on a long walk and then spent some time by the lake reading my Bible.  It was glorious.
Allie: People at the Chinese Buffet.  We went to a Chinese Buffet for dinner after their swim lessons, but honestly, I have no clue to whom she is referring.  There wasn't any person, or group of people I remember her specifically noticing.  But apparently, she is thankful for (or praying for?) all of the people at the Chinese Buffet that night.
Ryan: Train Tracks. Ryan LOVES driving over train tracks.  If we aren't crossing any in our regular travels, he begs for me to go out of our way just to drive over some.  He loves the bump and rumble.  He loves looking for trains (or seeing some train cars parked) nearby.  He often considers his day complete once we have driven over some tracks.  And there is a spot in the town where they go to preschool where you cross 5 sets of tracks that are all together.  That is pretty much his favorite place ever!
November 6
Me: Paying with Cash.  I hate grocery shopping.  I had been putting it off and I finally buckled down and went (almost a week overdue).  When I got to Meijer (the second store of the trip), their computers were completely down - meaning they couldn't electronically process any credit cards.  Regardless of their many announcements that they could only handle cash transactions, everyone was still trying to use their credit cards...and to process those transactions an employee had to call the credit card company and do it all over the phone and then manually override it at the register - which took a long, l-o-n-g time.  And they were having to do this for every single transaction because no one had cash.  I was relieved once I finally made it to my turn because we do an all cash budget so I was planning on paying cash for my groceries anyway!  I was able to move through quickly and smoothly.  Although, when one of the employees saw me taking my receipt she got all excited and thought that the computers were back up because no one else had used cash so she assumed I hadn't either!
Allie: Losen (Pronounced low-sen).  Allie's stuffed duck.  I never actually knew his name before today.  But he was re-discovered and Allie is so happy she found him again.
Ryan: Allie.  Aww.  I love when they are thankful for each other.
November 7
Me: An afternoon home.  Normally, on Thursdays, we hang around the town where the kids are in school until Lucas is finished with his class.  But he had people from the church he needed to visit, so he was traveling separately from us.  This meant we were completely free to leave whenever we wanted.  It was lovely to be able to have an afternoon at home to get some things done.
Allie: Ryan.  Aww.
Ryan:  Bee Bee.  This is a little teddy bear in a bee costume that he lost and found again.  He's been the happiest little guy.
And because it took me almost 2 weeks to get the first week of thankfuls posted...I would say it is probably best to expect weekly thankful posts.  Feel free to play along and share the things for which you are thankful as well!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I'm so thankful for these blogs. I love knowing the things the twins do and say. I love knowing you guys are always on an adventure of some sort. I'm so thankful that we have such a wonderful family. So much to be thankful for. I'm thankful that Allie and Ryan are growing up in a christian home with such loving parents. I'm thankful Poppy is off those boats. Love to all Nana