My 🎂 went by in a blur yesterday. Actually, 48 years seem to have flown by in a blur. In an effort to be really mindful of the many things I have to be grateful for, I made a list. Of 48 things. I have so many more that I could list but 48 is appropriate for now.
1. Life! I’m still here! I have things I need to work on to stay healthy but I’m feeling good!
2. Dane – my oldest – getting married this summer!!! Time flies.
3. Erik – my middle. Currently spreading his wings and is living halfway across the country. Excited for him but can’t wait for him to be back here!
4. Will – my baby. Working, playing, doing his homework.
5. Doug – my love ❤ I’m so grateful for the things he has brought to my life. The way he challenges me to be the best that I can be. How he has taught me that love is not perfect and it doesn’t need to be.
6. Jake – Doug’s boy. Hardworking, mini-Doug that loves the outdoors. He’s always doing stuff. Just like his dad. 😄
7. Jordan – Doug’s little girl. Passionate, determined. Beautiful. Runner. Everything I would have wanted in a daughter if I’d had one.
8. Dena – Dane’s fiancée. She is such a great young lady. I love watching her keep Dane off balance 😂 And she runs! What a bonus!!!
9. My mom and dad – My mom is a giver that goes to the most minute detail to make sure that everyone around her is taken care of. My dad is so passionate about the outdoors. He has taught the boys so much about trees and the woods. I am so lucky that they are still here to be an active part of my life.
10. Coco, Rudy, and Winnie 🐾🐾🐾 – my fur babies that give love and snuggles so unconditionally.
11. Karla and Lulu – I am so grateful that Karla lives back here and I can share stuff with her (like our doggies!).
12. John and Dawn, Grace and Evan – I have so much fun going to the cabin and sharing vacations with my brother and his family. The cousins have been so important to each other!
13. Deb, Sarah, Nikki, and Eric – best friends sare nice we were barely able to understand the importance of a best friend, they are my family.
14. I have a fabulous bigger family of aunts, uncles, and cousins that I don’t get to see often enough but who make up a very large piece of who I am.
15. Running – I’m so grateful that I can run. It keeps me sane, it keeps me healthy. It helps me set goals for myself and work towards them. My running has grown more social over the last couple years and it is fun to be part of a community of runners. 🏃🏻♀️
16. Nachos – with extra jalapeños. A gift from God to lift me up when my spirits are down!
17. My job – being a special education teacher has taught me so many important lessons that I never expected to learn. It has challenged every part of who I am and what I believe to be true. It has been the source of some of the greatest joys in my life and some of the largest sorrows. 📚🖍🍎
18. Steph and Will. My team. The people that have my back and are my biggest supports at school. I don’t think I could do my job without them.
19. My school community – I have the most compassionate principals. I have the most inclusive, reflective and forward moving coworkers. We are constantly striving to be better for our students. They make me a better teacher and a better person.
20. My cabin. Going to the cabin my whole life has shaped who I am. To be able to go up and be a part of nature, to be in a quiet environment and disconnect from the fast pace of every day life has kept me sane and grounded. It is beautiful and a place where time stands still.
21. The North Shore – Lake Superior, Grand Marais, The Superior Hiking Trail, Beaver Bay, Ely, Gooseberry Falls and Split Rock Lighthouse. The places that are the greatest memories from my childhood and from raising my kids. They are the places we go back to, the rituals that formed my family.
22. Deb – Doug’s ex. She is so kind and so accepting. She’s not ever made me feel like an intruder into her family or unwanted. It’s the best co-parenting I’ve ever seen.
23. Summer break – ANY break! Days off to rest and recharge my batteries. ☀️
24. Plant based eating – removing dairy and meat from my diet makes me feel good in a way that the standard American diet never did.
25. Digital books – being able to read my books without storing them or dusting them or forgetting to return them changed my life!
26. Adderall – the medicine that changed my life for the better! Getting an ADHD diagnosis in my 40’s has helped me to understand better when I do (or don’t do, or forget to do) the things I do. Adderall has given me a chance to feel like a normal person.
27. Smith Lake cabin and Mille Lacs – fishing, fun, and no rules. Relaxing at its finest. 🎣
28. Avocados – the miracle food that turns into guacamole and countless other things to make any meal complete.
29. Nylabone – the miracle dog chew toy that keeps my furniture while.
30. Netflix – The Crown! And a gabillion other movies and shows. All in one place.
31. Pinterest – a place to find resources and ideas for school and home and cooking and decorating and clothes and…….
32. Lularoe – the most comfy clothes with awesome colors and patterns.
33. My Garmin – it counts my steps an my miles. It tells me how far I’ve gone and how fast. It keeps me honest with my weight.
34. My pillow – the $75 investment that changed my sleeping habits for the better.
35. Flair markers – because they come in a million colors and they just write soooo smooth. I’m an addict.
36. My iPhone – the camera, the alarm clock, the news, my books, the Internet, and games all in one compact little place.
37. Probiotics – one little pill daily has improved my immune system so that I am not sick all school year long. It’s a miracle pill.
38. Christmas – because the spirit of giving and being Santa Claus is something I look forward to all year long.
39. Vivobarefoot shoes – comfortable without being gross so that my poor feet have a chance of being comfortable. I would buy every style if I could.
40. Bingo/Yahtzee/Solitaire – the games I play when I need mindless activity. 🎲🎲🎲🎲🎲
41. Crown Royal – when Bingo doesn’t work 😂
42. My big white fleecy blanket that keeps me warm all winter long. It’s indestructible.
43. Mr. Sketch markers. Because no m a teacher. And who doesn’t like smelly markers. Especially blueberry!!
44. The colors red, pink, and purple – they make me smile.
45. My Fiesta dishes – the bright colors make any meal and any day a little celebration.
46. Yoga – helping me to stretch out the kinks and to focus my brain.
47. Massage – Will, my massage guy, makes me feel like a new woman every time I go see him.
48. WordPress – this blog has given me an outlet for my thoughts and a place to hold myself accountable. It’s changed the way that I talk to myself. The Daily Word posts that help me frame and organize my thoughts. I’m so glad I found it.
I am so excited for the challenge and hope of a new year. Let’s see what things I can add to my list for next year. ❤❤❤