giving thanks

Sunday, October 7, 2007

gourds, no two alike or so it seems - yet another autumn tradition

It's Thanksgiving weekend in Canada, which really means for most people a huge turkey dinner and a lie on the couch. It's really no different then any other weekend here at Black St. My dogs don't tolerate turkey well so we don't have turkey, in fact we don't do anything out of the ordinary except, maybe this time, really pause to give thanks. I have a tremendous amount to be thankful for and I do try to remember to be thankful every day. When we reach our big rock at the halfway point of our afternoon walk we all sit (the dogs and I) I look out to sea, take a few deep, deep breaths and think "how did I get so lucky that I have all of this...everyday?" That said I don't feel like it's a focused enough thanks, it's a tiny half hearted calmness, my busy, busy mind is usually still chattering away above my breathing. A million miles a second, things to do, concerns & worries, self criticism (there's always lots of that), and lots and lots of mundane whirling thoughts.

This blog has helped me so much to be thankful. It's funny at the beginning back in July, I remember saying to someone "I think could blogging be a kind of spiritual journey or experience for me" and it certainly turned out that way ... I am thrilled to be able to read back now over several months and relive my day to day existence. To read and see what's important and cherished in my simple little life. To have a written and visual record of what I love, and especially of my family of cats & dogs and I look at everything now as a potential photograph which has helped me to really see, so much better, all of the amazing life around me.

You can take your own spiritual journey every, single day. Elizabeth Gilbert author of Eat Pray Love has these three daily suggestions: (excerpted from

Start a journal and answer this question every morning: What do I really, really, really want? "You have to say really, really, really three times or else you don't believe it. And answer it truthfully and do it again the next day and the next and the next," she says. "Because you can't set your journey if you don't know what you're for."

Write down the happiest moment of every day in a happiness journal.
"It's a way of reminding myself what really makes me happy and what doesn't," she says, "and learn and study and look back and see what is it consistently."

Refine your mantra.
"I say refine, not choose, because we all actually already have a mantra. We just might not realize that we do. Whatever you repeat constantly in your head is your mantra whether you know it or not, and that is leading you on your way," she says. "So if you're repeating, 'I'm a moron, I'm an idiot, I'm a failure, I'm a jerk, I'm a loser,' it's your mantra. So decide whether that's working for you. … Maybe it's not and then maybe you might want to choose a different thing to try to say whenever you remember that you're thinking what you're always doing."

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