Monday, April 29, 2013

Ten Things I'm Thankful For ~ a spring rose edition

Yep...I'm definitely awaiting the spring's roses yet to come... Aren't you?

Here are my "Ten Things I'm Thankful For"....

When the night has been too lonely, and the road has been too long,
and you think that love is only for the lucky and the strong,
just remember, in the winter,
far beneath the bitter snow,
lies the seed that with the sun's love
in the spring becomes the rose.

(The Rose, sung by Bette Midler)

Well, in the last blog post I did warn all about our strange weather patterns looming before us, and indeed the snow did visit to cover the earth once more, with its (once again) wintry white snowy blanket.

The air grew very damp, and a tornado bounced off a farm an hour away from us. The odd weather offered us more bitter cold for a 48 hour period, and then all began to thaw and warm up again. 

I'm happy to report we have only a little rain today, and the weather forecast to come for the rest of the week, is sun, sun, and more sun! The temperatures will rise, and with a steady increase of 20C+ of thermometer reading blissness, we will - at last, feel the effects of spring in our midst.

- 1 - I'm thankful for the gifts of spring. My husband gifted me with these lovely tulips yesterday. He too, felt the sun rounding the bend ahead.  

I'm happy to report our trees are filling up with tiny buds, a sure sign that we still require patience for spring to finally begin blasting in with full force. 

I am filled with great anticipation for a visible change of season to remain for more than a day, and having experienced one very beautiful day already as a teaser this past weekend, enabling doors open wide, and being able to sit for a bit and soak up the sun's rays while quietly listening to the multitudes of returning birdies, well now, that was so very wonderful.

- 2 - I'm thankful for the many blessings intentionally sought after day to day. Our world and personal circumstances still prove that there is so much to pray for, and still so much to be ever-thankful for. Always. 

There are important family dates filling up our calendar, ones we will highlight in bright yellowy hues, glowing radiant like the sun to provide some blessed excitement ahead. 

On May 19th, our future son-in-law will be baptized and receive his First Holy Communion. We will celebrate his and our daughter's wedding this August, and in both September and November, two more grandbabies (Yes now 2!) will make their welcomed entrances into our family. Other extended family events are dotted in between these ones, milestones for some and delights for others. So blessed!

- 3 - I'm thankful for the heart of our home - our kitchen! With Lent now behind us, and the Easter season in our midst, sporadic and impulsive baking moments are present in our kitchen. 

The goodies are becoming a habit, and I hate to spill the beans to one daughter that our traditional "Lenten Pie Sundays" are now over. Two pies this weekend, and happy faces resulting from serving those were quite funny. 

- 4 - I'm thankful that our schooling is rounding the bend, and the light at the end of the tunnel ahead is now (finally) beginning to brightly glow. 

At this time of year, there is a tattling with our teens showing definite preferrences for some subjects over others. The dawdling becomes quite remarkable when a least favorite subject is presented for the week's "catch-up" scheduling mode. Oh, but we all know, those essays, and assignments that they really aren't a fan of will still be there come Monday. Right? 

Seize the day children, for this part of schooling too shall pass...and then there will be many more challenges and learning opportunities ahead throughout your entire life. Real life-schooling never ends! Know that. :)

- 5 - I'm thankful for this old solid oak  "Wilson" piano, the one that is daily adorned with sheet music, or a favorite piano book. It's the one that fingers pass across the ebony keys, offering joyful song and rhythmic tunes enough to fill our home with the sounds of music

Thank you to our children who still love to play, we love to listen to your efforts, and thank you mom and dad for having it surprisingly dropped off that one day, now so long ago. This is the piano all of my siblings played tunes upon, the one we had in our home growing up.  

All eight of our children have been privy to piano lessons, in the hope that they would learn to especially, and simply love fine music down the road. It is my fondest hope that they all still appreciate having had the opportunity of being introduced to, and playing on this timeless musical instrument. Maybe they won't continue to play in the future, but it will remain here whenever they wish to sit and run the keys again in the future.

- 6 - I'm thankful for the opportunity and pleasure of having guests in our home at Easter, for the very first time since our move to Ontario almost seven years ago now. 

My sister and our friend spent many hours driving here from Cape Cod, arriving late on Good Friday, and not leaving until Easter Monday morning. It was very special to have them here with us, one of those really thankful things in life to have additional family around on a special weekend. Love to you sister!

A highlight was the men's pool table games, so neat to see them enjoy circling around it and having a great time. Our friend used to own his own billiard hall many, many years ago and really enjoyed revisiting that special former hobby of his.

- 7 - I'm thankful for the formal change of winter to spring sports. Our son is playing ball hockey again this year. He's made a move to a new venue, with the biggest change being that this particular new-to-him league is outdoors, snow or shine. 

He was over the moon crazy-happy to be able to grab his favorite number 10 again, one that he's had for most of his ice/ball hockey seasons thus far. 

Though these photos have the sun shining, it was freezing cold out there, hovering around a mere 3C degrees! So cold, the sun didn't even warm a body up, so these boys were wearing layers to keep warm, and working it out there to keep pumping up their circulation.

Team win of 6-1 was a hearty bonus for all the kids on his team, but all were happy to run for warmth as soon as they exited their arenas. 

I'd like to mention the incredible professional flooring they are able to play on, a formal floor used in roller hockey games, so there is a cushioning for joints moving about throughout the season, as opposed to playing in an indoor arena's concrete flooring. Bonus!

- 8 - I'm thankful for attempts at resolving issues with short cuts to cleaning hardwood floors. This "shark steamer" allowed me to make an unexpected happy dance when locating it locally and finding it on sale for almost half the price. Ohhhh, was I ever thankful when the cashier surprised me with that good news, as it was the night before the actual mark down event and she offered it to me early. Yay!

With the recent purchase of this steam cleaner, I worked and worked at cleaning for some additional super shine on our abundance of flooring in this house. My verdict? Perhaps the sales pitch is hailed by many to be fantastic, yes it did clean well, and I'm still thankful for having it, but honestly, I think I'm needing a commercial unit instead to perform for us here. 
Though the manufacturer claims it will disinfect at the same time as cleaning, even at its lowest steam setting, I found it left a rather dull streaked flooring as a result of all that abundance of cleaning. I still really like it though, specially on my tile flooring in the hallways, doorways and bathrooms, but one thing was sure - performing the task with such a large amount of flooring required several breaks when the motor obviously became too hot to continue. (Your thoughts, if you own one are most welcomed.)

- 9 - I'm thankful for this white frothy cuppa sweetness! I gave up these and other things for lent, and boy oh boy was I ever thankful for this special and unexpected serving placed before me! Yum! Yum! 

It's a ceremonial thing for me, not to be indulged in too often, but slowly savored when present. Bliss! 

- 10 - I'm thankful for daily cell phone reminders when viewing my newest photo placed on my cell phone's home screen. This was a photo I snapped a while back through my window, one that I love to check out daily that is graced with this window decal, which has become so special to me.
It makes me smile, when every single day my cell phone offers a little reminder not only to see the sunshine in my days, but to also fill my heart with gratitude for the many, many blessings given unto me. 

As this week's Sunday epistle bible reading details;

" Dearly beloved, Every best gift, and every perfect gift is from above: coming down from the Father of lights, with Whom there is no change, nor shadow of alteration...."
~ 1 James 1:17

 And once again, ten - only ten out of hundreds of thankful things are offered for just a minor glimpse at some of my simple things in life ~ from me to you.

Grab a pen, grab something to jot down your favorite and thankful things today. Count your blessings and know they really do come down from the Father of lights.

Have a great week everyone! 

"People from a planet without flowers would think 
we must be mad with joy the whole time 
to have such things about us."

~Iris Murdoch