Gratitudes: 8/1/12

I need to focus on the things I'm grateful for in this moment. It's one of those days where my mind feels restless- it carries some doubt and pain and a little anger. Not to mention that I've stubbed my toe three times already today. That's bound to put a person in a mood… but the sun is shining, my children are sweet, I made myself an epic breakfast, and I have time to sit here and write. Those things alone are enough to shake me out of this funk. The thing that always seems to work is getting out of my head and into my body. So, directly after this post I'm going to head out into the garden to do a little planting and watering, take care of the chickens, and then hop on my elliptical while the kids watch a movie. Then later tonight I get to go out with my little sister to see Detroit's 15th annual tour of urban farms and gardens, which I really couldn't be more excited about. The funk must go. 

So for now, a quick gratitude list. 

My son. He turned two on the 24th, and like all parents I'm a little awed by the passage of time. I can't imagine life without this little guy. Just before his birthday my sister and I felt it was time for his first haircut. Here's the before:


And the after:

His birthday was simple and sweet, and I could just talk for hours about how happy I am to be his mother and witness his amazing life. I also always feel grateful for my birth experiences on my kids' birthdays. 

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I'm grateful for my garden/farm experience this year. It's been challenging and complicated in some ways, but never fails to give me some perspective and an opportunity to improve. I am also able to get out in the garden and extract countless spiritual lessons from the examples given to me by nature. Not to mention, clearing out old and preparing it for the new is just incredibly cathartic. Here's a before:

And after:

This fall/winter garden is one I'm really looking forward to. In the 100 degree heat where nothing was thriving and no seed would germinate, I had to throw up my hands for several weeks and hope for the best. But, we're still having some luck, and I've had the opportunity to shift my efforts towards a colder season garden, which is something I need more practice/experience in anyway. All good stuff.

And on that note, I'm definitely grateful for the milder weather and the little bit of rain. I love sitting outside all afternoon with the kids. 

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I'm grateful for the land. I'm grateful for the promise and opportunity it brings to my life and the lives of my friends. Yesterday I completed an application for a loan to build a large hoop house out there. It's a big grant, really, but it's aimed at increasing local food access in our area. So the idea is that the loan is paid back by us providing that value of food for low-income folks over the course of 5 years. Pretty amazing opportunity. Our friends filled out the same application and so we hope that at least one of us gets it.

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I'm grateful for my grandparents who are all alive and I've been able to see into my adulthood. My grandpa just turned 90 on Sunday, and we had a big thing. It was very meaningful for me, even though he was a little curmudgeonly about it. It's also great to have my children know them.

Okay, on with my day. I like the quote: "Peace is not the absence of conflict but the ability to cope with it." Meditating on that today.

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