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Thankful in January 2012

January 1 – 7:

This week has been focused a lot on New Year’s Resolutions.  I don’t usually make them, but this year I’m feeling a lot more optimistic and enthusiastic about what I can accomplish for myself.  Also, I’m feeling that I need to state some goals – as opposed to just thinking things like, “yeah, that would be nice.”  I want to go after things that I desire for myself, not just think about how nice it would be if they fell into my lap.  I’m still not writing down or publicizing all of the things that I want, partly because I don’t think I’m ready to bite off quite so much at one time.  I need to start slowly.  Still, some of the things on my list are not small, like the budget piece, so I am trying to be prepared to cut myself some slack as I go along.

This week, I’m thankful for goals.  I’m primarily thankful that I am in a state of mind that I feel I can set goals for myself without the fear of failure.  As I wrote in the Resolutions Query, I have spent most of my life making plans and goals and resolutions with one part of my brain, while the another part of me is steadily telling myself that it’s a waste of time, since I’m sure to fail.  I’m still fighting that little voice, but I’m thankful that it’s just a little voice now, and not that booming megaphone of a voice that I used to hear.

January 8 – 14:

I started the Queries again this week and I’m particularly thankful for that.  I didn’t realize how much I had missed that piece of the blog!  I had been feeling a little nagging to get back to them for the last 2 months, but I kept putting it aside.  To be honest, I’ve been fighting the blahs for about that long, and not putting as much effort into anything as I should.  But I made a goal – a resolution – to get back to the Queries, and that meant doing it NOW.  So I did.

What I’ve been reminded of, is the interaction that asking a Query provided for me.  I interact with people all the time, but asking a specific question, a non-sequitor that usually forces someone to stop and think a little bit, that’s just completely different.  The Queries have provided an opportunity for me to see further inside of people than I normally would be allowed.  They have opened doors to further conversation, to laughter and reflection.  In short, they’ve been a great thing for me.  So, this week, I’m thankful to be back in the Query business.

January 15 – 21:

I’ve been thinking quite a bit about family this week and how thankful I am for my family as a whole, and for the members individually.  I can’t point to a specific incident or conversation that would have brought this to the forefront, but it’s something that came to mind repeatedly as I was driving to or from work.  I have a short 25 or 35 minute commute each way, and I generally ride to and from work without the distraction of the radio.  Since I started the Thankfuls and especially in these last two months or so, I have really been taking in the scenery and enjoying the sky and the trees and the wildlife.  It gives me some quite time to just think: to plan or mentally write or just let my mind wander.  And so it goes where it wants to go.  Over and over this week, it has landed on family and what a blessing they are.

January 22 – 28:

I’ve had a bit of car trouble this week, to say the least.  Backing up, I have to share that I have not been feeling very well for quite a while.  I don’t know why, but I’m nearly constantly tired.  I’m sleepy tired, my muscles are achy and tired, and I get physically tired out too quickly.  Having said that, I’m thankful that it’s not worse, which it really could be.  I know I don’t have much to complain about.  Okay, so the reason I even bring it up is that I took a couple of vacation days this week just to rest.  I worked out my schedule so that I could have 5 days off, but only need to use 2 days of vacation.  Neat trick, huh?  Yes, it was restful; thanks for asking.  But on the second day, I realized that I had a flat tire.  I wasn’t planning on going anywhere, but that’s the last thing you want to deal with.  I’m trying to rest, and now I’m faced with changing a flat, and having to go get it repaired or replaced, and then there’s the cost.  So I ignored it – time to deal with that later.  On day three, I figured I’d better change that tire.  I had an eye appointment scheduled for the next day, and I didn’t want to have to change the tire beforehand, especially considering that it might be cold.  I waited as long as I could, but it was drizzling all day.  Finally I just went out and changed the tire in the rain.  It wasn’t too bad, really.  Of course, the next morning was sunny and warm, but if I had not changed the tire, it definitely would have snowed that day.  In the end, Firestone repaired the tire for free (even though it turns out that it wasn’t theirs) because I bought my last tires from them and I had some kind of hazard something that I don’t even remember.  What a blessing and a relief for someone who’s trying to keep to her limited budget.

That same day, my car started revving really, really high.  I wasn’t doing it the night before, but now it sounds like it’s going to explode or something.  When I take it in to get it looked at, I find out that a mouse or a squirrel has chewed completely through some wires.  The worst part about this is that I don’t know when this creature will strike again.  The last time my engine light came on, a little critter had chewed through a different wire.  Anyway, I get it fixed.  The next morning, the engine does the same thing.  Not good.  Long story short, I’ve got a repeat offender.  I think it’s going to be okay, but it is an unneeded stress.

So what’s to be thankful about?  Good question!  The first thing I’m thankful for is that I really did think about all I had to be thankful for this week, even with all of the unexpected repairs and time sucks.  I didn’t have to remind myself to be thankful, I just was thankful.  To begin with, if I had not been doing the financial course with my aunt and uncle, and had I not been really trying (and succeeding) to do the work, then I wouldn’t have had the money to repair my car.  Twice.  It’s the reason I had money to go to the eye doctor when my eyes are really bothering me.  It’s the reason I could get my car fixed without borrowing money.  I’m so thankful to have those family members who are not only willing to help me, and to take the journey with me, but who are also willing to do the really hard part, which is to hold me accountable.  Had they not done that, then maybe I wouldn’t have tried as hard.

I’m thankful that the repairs didn’t cost more than they did.  I’m thankful that the second repair didn’t require another part.  I’m thankful that my cousin worked on my car, because I trust him.  I’m thankful that I had the money to repair the car.  I’m thankful that I was able to face it all with a good attitude and with Thankfulness.

Also, I hit a deer this week.  I’m thankful that she almost got completely past me and it didn’t kill her.  And I’m thankful that my car and I weren’t damaged, either.

Okay, some really neat things happened this week, too.  I saw two (TWO!!) bald eagles in a field as I drove to work (my first day back).  And I see a peacock just about every day (in a coop with some chickens) and on the same day as the eagles, the peacock had his tail fanned out.  That was a good day.

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