Gratitude day 64

I am grateful for the box our new hot water tank came in.

IMG_3232.JPG

I am grateful that I managed, just today, the day before workers come to start work, to get our basement devoid of stuff. When we moved in we had most of our stuff placed there, and having so much crap, we never figured we needed it enough to unpack it. One lesson learned that (hopefully) will no longer applicable to me: don’t hold on to stuff thinking someday you’ll have a house to put it in. If you are like me, you might spend decades squeezing those things into closets. You’ll move them from rented apartment to rented apartment. Perhaps you’ll even rent storage space for them. Then, you’ll get that house you always dreamed those things would belong in, only to find you stIll don’t want that crap. It’s been a liberating, but long and tedious journey to a clean basement over these last few weeks.

I am grateful for projects getting done and launched and off my radar. On to other things!

Gratitude day 55

IMG_3153.JPG

IMG_3155.JPG

IMG_3170.JPG

IMG_3176.JPG

IMG_3178.JPG

I am grateful for Julie’s idea to go to Goldstream provincial park for a weenie roast for lunch. It was all kinds of a great way to spend the day. Having a fire is fun. Eating hot dogs is fun. Being outside is almost always more fun than being inside. The natural beauty of that place, from the majesty of a great big waterfall, to the microcosm of the moss on the side of any given tree is amazing. It makes me realize my gratitude for living near this particularly amazing place on this particularly amazing planet. What are the chances?

I am grateful for the brotherly love that exists between my boys. They can fight like cats and dogs; perhaps just dogs; perhaps actually particularly violent dingoes… But I digress. Often they fight, but sooner or later they make up, and you can see how much they prefer to be together than apart. That photo of them holding hands – that’s all them, and just how they were this afternoon. If that’s not nice, I don’t know what is.

On that note, I am grateful to Kurt Vonnegut, whose novels I love, but in this case I am grateful for this quote about his uncle Alex, from whom I borrow that phrase A LOT in this blog :

One of the things [Uncle Alex] found objectionable about human beings was that they so rarely noticed it when they were happy. He himself did his best to acknowledge it when times were sweet. We could be drinking lemonade in the shade of an apple tree in the summertime, and Uncle Alex would interrupt the conversation to say, “If this isn’t nice, what is?”

So I hope that you will do the same for the rest of your lives. When things are going sweetly and peacefully, please pause a moment, and then say out loud, “If this isn’t nice, what is?”

My late grandfather, Steve Lathrop Sr. had a quotable phrase he often uttered to me and many other family members on many occasions, from backyard barbecues to fancy dinners. It was similar and went like this:

“It doesn’t get much better than this.”

[pause for effect]

“And this is pretty good!”

Gratitude day 50

IMG_3132.JPG

I am grateful I am in bed. I’m tired, but I will be asleep soon.

I am grateful I have a space to tinker in. Tonight I made most of a bicycle from bits laying around.

I am grateful for my family. For a brief period we were all on the floor playing with lego. Coop made a great table and chairs, complete with coffee mugs, iPhone and cookies. If that isn’t nice, I don’t know what is.

Gratitude day 40

IMG_3096.JPG

I am grateful for the nap I had with Farley today. He’s still a fairly avid napper, but he won’t be forever. Best to drink these kids in while one can, and I did today, and it was nice.

I am grateful for leftovers. It made dinner easy; otherwise, we we’re beat. I think it would have been hard.

I am grateful for my big boy’s understanding and gracious response upon learning that my little boy knocked over his plastic beadwork project, thereby destroying dozens of minutes of work. Cooper was upset, but he didn’t freak out at Farley too bad upon hearing the news.

Gratitude day 39

IMG_2931.JPG

I am grateful for a family style Friday night play date for our kids, complete with pizza, wine and beer for grownups, and great friends old and new.

I am grateful for the time I had at my old office. I packed it up last night after working there for the last day. It was a great spot, and man, I am going to miss that view!

I am grateful I don’t have to move my own office stuff for the impending office move. We had movers booked, at the last second, they bailed, now we have another crew booked instead. With my leg out of order, I am REALLY glad that worked out!

Gratitude day 37

So many things to be grateful for, but top of my list today is the first day of kindergarten.

I am also grateful for the celebratory post-first-day-of-kindergarten feast at the White Spot, in which the boys finished it all off with chocolate sundaes.

And lastly, I am grateful for puddles. I am not a fan of the rain, but 2 year olds in puddles are a nice silver lining.

Gratitude day 35

IMG_3081.JPG

I am grateful for Vancouver island, just the way it is. My brother sent me this link, which has some interesting ideas about linking the island to the mainland with a bridge or tunnel. Reading it made me realize that my gut response to that notion would be that I’d prefer the existing ferry system. Not sure why that is, but it’s good to find you are happy with what you’ve got.

IMG_3082.JPG

I am grateful for my folks, and my biggest, Coop, who by all accounts had a great day traipsing around town today.

I am grateful for a quiet day at the office. I ploughed through a fair amount of work, and me knee and brain found it to be a restorative experience after a busy weekend.

Gratitude day 34

I am grateful for Farley’s ladybug costume from last Halloween. He loves it, and often requests to wear it to sleep in at night, which means we got this little nugget of solid video gold this morning. As he slumbers as I write this, he’s a ladybug.

I am grateful that I think my knee is getting better, or at least it’s not getting worse.

I am grateful for taco night, which is always a fiesta at our house, but even more so with my mom and dad and a few other family friends over. Julie made pico de gallo. there was cake. NOM NOM NOM!

Gratitude day 33

I am grateful for kids playing quietly on the living room floor on a lazy Saturday morning. Spoiler alert, nothing happens in this video but quiet playing. The first 10 seconds is representative of the whole thing. This went on for an hour or so. If that’s not nice, I don’t know what is.

I am grateful for a visit from a garter snake in the garden today. Some people might not like snakes in their gardens. I do. Having grown up in Calgary, snakes were a rare but fascinating sight in my childhood, and I never saw one in our yard. I feel fortunate to have them in my garden. Not sure why, but I really do.

I am grateful for my folks, who come to Victoria to visit from time to time. The kids love having them around, and so do I. They come bearing gifts for them, and they buy us all dinner. They plant pansies in the garden, and surprisingly, they don’t freak out when there are garter snakes.

Gratitude day 30

IMG_3066.JPG

I am grateful for helpful kids getting bigger. We had bacon, lettuce, and tomato sandwiches for dinner tonight (in and of itself, something to be grateful for). Coop expertly sliced all the tomatoes, with a big, sharp, serrated knife. I am grateful for the help, and I am grateful for the constant source of opportunity to marvel at the things kids can do that they couldn’t do yesterday ALL THE CUSSING TIME.

I am grateful that after a crazy, off the rails morning that I mostly was not grateful for (confused, rapidly deteriorating logistics, kids pissing in pants at especially infuriating moments), it didn’t start to rain until the very last moment before I parked my bike when I got to work. If it started earlier. I may have lost it; or at least howled while shaking my fists at an imaginary camera on a crane, pointing straight down at me from the sky.

I am grateful for gravlax. So dang easy to make. So dang delicious.