I am struggling with gratitude today. Painful, hard things happen to good people who don’t deserve it. Thinking about writing this post tonight, I’ve tried to find some silver lining on a dark cloud that has moved in on the lives of some folks I know, but there isn’t one. Things like this shouldn’t happen to anyone. This doesn’t inspire gratitude. Not a bit. Not at all.

One thing I’ve gained by writing this blog has been a deeper understanding of the complexity of human experience. In particular, that you can have a bad day, a good day, get bad news, feel overwhelmed and powerless, feel lucky, find safety, etc, etc, all in the same 24 hours. 

Good things happen every day. They happen on bad days, too. Both are true. Recognizing the bright spots shouldn’t mean denial of the darkness we sometimes experience.

I am grateful for my bike ride home, and for warm, summer weather.

I am grateful the macaroni and cheese I made tonight turned out well.

I am grateful for near daily glimpses of ferrel deer in my city.

I am grateful for my family’s health.


I am grateful for my electric bike. Sometimes, I just don’t want to haul my sorry butt up a a big, steep hill. Does that make me lazy? Maybe. Did you haul your sorry butt up a big, steep hill today? Didn’t think so. Now we’re even.

I am grateful for the buskers festival. We went tonight, and invited friends to join at the very last second. Holy moley, that was some great entertainment. And holy moley, can 2 to 7 year olds ever laugh hard at physical comedy. It was better watching our goofballs than than the show, at times.



I am grateful for a quiet day working in my office, all by myself, just me and Ira Glass.

I am grateful for my kids being hilarious on the trampoline. 

I am grateful for the sincerity in Farley’s voice when he often observes that “this is a nice dinner.”

I am grateful for copious amounts of great cycling weather, although like everyone else here, I’d really be just fine with getting a bit of rain.


I am grateful for some time with Coop and some of his friends at a birthday party today. It was at Fort Rodd Hill national historic site. Machine gun demonstrations might seem a little odd for a birthday party activity, but they really do get 6 year olds pretty excited.

I have also been grateful to live in a tourist town this weekend. We’ve taken advantage of many of the attractions where locals aren’t the target market this weekend. I sometimes forget I am not on vacation living here.

And I am mighty, mighty grateful I finally broke down and bought a portable air conditioner. Woah nelly, it’s hot!


I am grateful for a pretty pink sky last night.

I am grateful for the petting zoo, which seems like A good idea when Farley is asking about buying a puppy. By asking I mean dramatically pleading, through tears.

I am grateful for a nice afternoon with my boys. After the petting zoo we went to the museum, and then sushi for dinner.

I am grateful for some time without boys with my spouse. We have a new babysitter; I am grateful we have someone else to call, too!


I am grateful for some time with Coop, Farley, Coop’s buddy from summer camp, and his little sister riding around a bike park today. Added bonus: I was there when the 3 year old little sister rode a bike for the first time!

I am grateful for homemade piƱa colada popsicles consumed in the backyard for dessert tonight. 


I am grateful for a weenie roast we had outside, made possible by the cheesy propane fireplace we bought a few years ago when we were camping and there was a ban on wood burning. It isn’t as good as a real fire, but it’s easy to start and stop, it’s great for cooking, and it’s not actually legal to have an open wood fire in this neck of the woods anyway. Even if it were, I don’t think I would; the weather has been so dry it feels like the whole dang island is about to burst into flame.

But I digress. Weenie roasts outside on a weeknight are something to be grateful for, so I am.