Thursday, July 08, 2010

Ten Things I'm Thankful For

Time for another installment of my
"Ten Things" to be thankful for, always varied, always random bits in positively NO particular order.

Our home has been buzzing with activity for the past few weeks, and finally by June 30th, the schooling was packed up, though some continual math review and reading will be mandatory for the most part on the daily agenda.

It seems any time I have a catch-up chat with my mother, I'm always telling her I've been really busy but can't think of everything I've been doing right off the hop. And then it kicks in, so many things just spill out. Why is that? Why do things get so busy?

I know why. :)

It's because we are creatures of habit, and we try to duck down when issues we don't want to deal with suddenly spring forth when least expected, sensing the need - rather than the desire to roll up our sleeves while rising to the occasion, when yet ONE more thing is added to our already full plate. New things too, like having to empty our septic tank, finally getting our first of three bottles filled for the three week spread of well water testing, and making sure to keep our dogs protected from summer ticks and fleas.

Summer sure is here with fabulous weather, currently we are experiencing a monstrous heat wave, almost too hot for the beach! And here's where I confess my love/hate for air conditioning because extended amounts of it eventually make me sick for some reason, the cool to the humid and hot for whatever reason just don't agree with me.

Both of our portable dehumidifiers are blasting away, as is the one supposedly attached to our furnace system for the summer (have no clue of that myself). Still awaiting my chore list is washing the three spongy filters inside of the HRV device, as clean and less humid air indoors is part of our climate control requirement for my husband's health.

Without further ado, let me present my
"Ten Thankful Things", just sparks of thankfulness appearing in my days this past week.

Please know for certain that my own personal thoughts on true thankfulness can obviously never be offered, nor delivered in true completeness within one simple post.
And in case you just might find it interesting and want even more today, you can always skip along to view other "thankful" posts by clicking onto the archives located - right HERE.

- 1 - I'm thankful for all of the birdie life on our property, the feathery population filling the trees in our forest. Harmonious chirping and morning singsong fill our home with cheer before 5am. Oh, and when summer storms offer us buckets of crazy rainfall, the forest comes alive even more with melodies and entire symphonies from a variety of resident birds, sounding like a rainforest of jungle life. Even the chipmunks chirp in along, adding to the tunes.

No wonder nature writers like "Thornton Burgess" were inspired by the sights and sounds of the natural world. We just love discovering and noting all the new life out yonder, including this nest of eggs, six in all, birthed there by a house wren.

Our son was very excited to discover his handmade bird house filled with new life nestling inside, and then there are the other two bird houses the children have made, currently filled with new nests for even more bird eggs for safe hatching.

This little mama bird was determined to fend off any other bird who happened to visit nearby, and wasn't at all pleased when we pulled the house down to see if anything was inside (happy to have had my camera with me to take the photo above). Six wee small eggs rested peacefully, likely all hatched and gone from here by now.

- 2 - I'm thankful for fun surprises awaiting me on my camera, when I take out the memory card to load up the photos onto my computer and find poses like the one above.

This daughter likes to take photos and even has her own camera, ....but every once in a while, she tends to make me laugh with her funny self portrait poses.

- 3 - I'm thankful for
little nightstand surprises! Like this one above I found when my husband decided to change our picture frames around, also dusting off my Grade 11 highschool photo in the black frame from so very long ago. He said he liked that one of me and wanted it there. Okay then....giggling... as it's side by side with our 30th wedding anniversary photo taken in Oahu, Hawaii. Do they go together? Sure, why not.

- 4 - I'm thankful for red and white reminders over Canada Day week! This year we attended the fireworks at the bay, enjoying all of the festivities beforehand on the main drag of town.

I was initially annoyed with myself for not being able to find my stash of temporary Canadian flag tattoos (yes, I like one on my cheek!), and for forgetting my flags in my vehicle. But like all sweet and simple pleasures, I was gifted with a whole bouquet of paper ones while downtown. Fun!

Oh Canada!

- 5 - I'm thankful for school books now packed up and put away for a time, and all of those school supplies and evidence of intensive education out of sight for a bit to enjoy our summer days ahead.

There really is some merit to taking time for continued schooling over the hottest and most humid days, already enforcing inside days anyway with our children to flee from the high heat. So, we continue to hand over some gently assigned reading, and math flashcards work just fine here for remembering all the hard work in "getting it" over the past year.

And coupled up with this is the need for this mama to create said syllabus, tweaking and forming the schooling agenda for the coming year. Just two from our eight children remain at home for schooling.

I've taken time the past few weeks to assess and really begin purging the schooling books and shelving materials, throwing out or boxing up all of the curriculum and materials for lower grades. I've not ever had to do this before, always had another little one to surrender the goods to, so it has been the strangest feeling in the world to me. Heading towards high school, the purging has been intense and my recycling bins are full every week for garbage day. That part feels great!

- 6 - I'm thankful for summer skies like this one above, the one I enjoyed so much while having a bonfire and cooking our lunch over it, just sitting back in one of our white rickety chairs and enjoying the view above. Watching those types of fluffy white clouds allows for daydreaming and plenty of wishing.

I've spent many a while laying on top of our trampoline with a pillow under my neck, mesmerized with the activity of blowing clouds on breezy summer days. But it's that blue, very BLUE sky background coloring that gets to me the most, every time, so beautiful! One doesn't see a sky like this in the west so I'm happy to see it here. It offers so much cheer to my days.

- 7 - I'm thankful for recycling old vehicle tires, another unexpected investment we had to make recently, the one where we usually just leave the old tires with the business establishment we purchase the new tires from, but not this time!

Our girls begged to have them up at the barn because they are currently creating all new horse jumping course ideas for their riding pleasures and upcoming horse shows.

Next week is the first horse show one of our daughters will be participating in so the tires came in handy, along with all the other stuff they've collected and brought up to the riding ring.

- 8 - I'm thankful for
our little deck with our two chairs, such a cozy little place any time of day. Whether we can perch there in the early morning hours, listening to the rainforest of birding activity on our property, while watching the sun rise at the same time, or resting there at the end of the day while bidding adieu to the sun setting in front of us, we have really come to appreciate having a deck this year to walk out to from our bedroom.

A sweet escape, one we've also used for schooling sessions when the shade is still offering cover, two younger children working away in their studies while mama is nearby folding laundry. It works. I'm so thankful for this little setting this summer.

- 9 - I'm thankful for this son, yes THIS son with his groovy white sunglasses, particular signature hair preferences and all. He is my big helper, my right hand type of guy when I require extra help, assisting me when I need him most, like last weekend when he carried many ridiculously heavy boxes to our vehicle. Later on the same day, he came to the antique and collectible fair I attended as a book vendor to assist again in carting leftovers home, hauling all back into the house.

He offers me his muscles often, isn't afraid to rise up to the tallest rung on the ladder when required, and now is very occupied working two separate jobs over the summer. He says we need him around here, but there comes a time when our older ones need parental mentoring, directing them to branch out and proceed with the responsibilities of living life towards their own futures as adults. His time is here, and so far, so good. Love you my sonny son!

- 10 - I'm thankful for
THIS MAN, yep, this one in the photo above.

There are no words for the journey ahead, though many days are continually filled with being "present" and "in the moment" for whatever they offer, sensing the urge to keep on making plenty of memories, and creating reference points on how to live our days with concentrated efforts to what matters most, throwing away the trivial and the nonessential. We grow to learn that pulling up our socks and taking every new day for what it is, a gift, is right where its at!

Life is made up of MOMENTS

There are moments of joy,
moments of sadness,

shared moments,
and stolen moments,
moments to be cherished,
and moments you wish you could forget.

Moments can define you.
Define yours today.

All you have to do is figure out HOW you want to live your moments...

And this concludes ten more things I'm thankful for, random and chosen just because. What are your ten things this week?

Have a great week everyone. Stay cool and drink plenty of water if you're living in the heat wave areas like we are.