Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Thanksgiving = Favorite

Halloween = meh. I could live my life quite comfortably without this holiday. I’m a hobo and I don’t like to dress up, I’m trying to avoid candy right now, I hate carving pumpkins, and, since I don’t have children, the ones who come knocking on my door annoy me. However, one thing did amuse me this year. We went to the ward Halloween party on Saturday, and watching Mike in the donut eating competition was very entertaining.

Let’s fast forward to Thanksgiving. I love this holiday. Not only do I love feasting upon buttery rolls, graveyed-up potatoes, and dark meat, but I treasure that I get to focus on all of the wonderful blessings I have. It has been my favorite for years now. Dare I say more favorite than Christmas?

Once upon a time, I was in high school. When I was in this stage of life, a friend gave me a gratitude journal. I was instructed to write down 5 things I was grateful for each day starting a month before Thanksgiving arrived. One rule: You many never repeat anything that you are grateful for. They all have to be new, different things. I peeled off the cover that had assorted gratitude quotes on it and jazzed it up with NASCAR stickers, and then it quickly became something I was interested in. The first week was a piece of cake. I thought of the usual things: water, house, clothes, NASCAR, Dexter (my beloved Honda Civic), food, etc. Things got a little harder after that. I had to keep my eyes open and be thinking about the good things God had blessed me with. It was neat because I could really see God’s hand working to help me and answer my prayers. I know I wouldn’t have noticed if I weren’t keeping careful watch for my gratitude journal. Keep in mind that this didn’t happen right away. Some of my entries were quite self-centered and ridiculous.

Hence journal entry on Friday, November 21, 2003:

Glasses – only cute ones

I can do pushups

Caller ID


I have eyebrows

My assortment of curling irons

Waffle Crisp

I think it took me several years to grasp the concept of looking for God’s hand in my daily life. However, I caught on eventually, and I always look forward to pulling out my little gratitude journal each and every year.

My wonderful ward Relief Society had a complete activity centered upon these stellar things. We made the cutest journals ever, which was perfect, because my old NASCAR one was full. After making one at the activity, I became a psycho-crazy-journal-making fiend, making them complete with an inside cover pocket. I have never been so crafty. I discovered Aleene’s Super Thick Tacky Craft Glue of Glory (it even fixed my kitchen chair! Mike didn’t believe craft glue would work, but Aleene sure showed him) and went to town. I have made probably about 2 dozen. My family, office friends, visiting teachees/teachers all have them, and I will probably make more before the week is over. I can’t stop.

Here are a few. These, unfortunately, are not my finest work. I sent the best ones to my family in Germany before I thought of taking a picture.

In case I wasn’t sure I got enough gratitudyness in, Mike and I constructed a Gratitude Tree on our front door for FHE. Every day we each write a thing we’re grateful for on a leaf and put up two leaves a day. It may look a little bare right now, but wait until Thanksgiving. That tree is going to look sweet.

PS. I have had this strange, sudden obsession with peanut butter cookies. I’ve made three batches in the past two weeks and I simply cannot get enough. No Halloween candy allowed, but cookies are always ok. : ) I am loving these!

While you’re looking, please notice the incredible countertops I have. Where else but Wymount can you find seafoam green with gold flecks? Um, probably nowhere. Mike and I are some of the remaining few, even here, to have these beauties. Despite their hideousness, Mike and I still think Wymount is the bomb.com. Best place for students to live ever. Ok, maybe it’d be the best if it had a washer and dryer. And a dishwasher too. And some sort of bathroom counter space for my assortment of curling irons. Ok, maybe it’s not so awesome. Good thing it’s gratitude time!


Kendra Lafferty said...

Laken! I'm kind of a blog stalker. But I really enjoy reading your posts! Um and the journals are freakin cool! I wish I had been to that activity! And I love the gratitude tree. I just might steal it. (the idea, not your tree)

ME! said...

Laken!! Those journals are so cute! I wish that good at crafts! Believe me I've tried things like that before. I super wish I could be at good as staying away from candy as you are!!