a tickle of words to create smiles

Archive for the ‘Joy’ Category

Grateful for Kindness (TY-15)

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We are blessed to be in a world where most people value kindness and compassion. I am extremely grateful for kindness and those who practice it daily. Witnessing kindness in action is one of the most uplifting events to observe.

I am grateful to be able to practice love and kindness daily in every aspect of my life. Love and kindness brings such value to my life and my purpose. I am an advocate of kindness and I delight in promoting love and kindness in everything I write, paint and do. Focusing on kindness, brings more kindness to myself and others. Kindness is the center of my being.   I profoundly appreciate kindness.

Appreciating Halloween (TY-13)

ako-oct31-2013Halloween is one of my favorite holidays of the year next to Christmas. I enjoy dressing up and all the spooky sights. I feel Halloween gives us permission to be a bit mischievous and a whole lot of playful.

I appreciate how Halloween comes at the end of October as the nights grow longer and the air a bit cooler, as it brings us closer to winter. We are going from a time of harvest and plenitude to a time of scarcity and reduction. Life is transitioning to death as we approach the end of another year. Of course, this is all geographically dependent to the northern hemisphere.

In the southern hemisphere, it is springtime transitioning to summer; and many of the Halloween traditions such as bonfires and Jack-o-Lanterns make no sense. However, I believe Halloween is also celebrated in various countries below the equator, where there is strong European and American influences. Halloween has quite a history…here is an excerpt from the History Channel:

Halloween’s origins date back to the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain (pronounced sow-in). The Celts, who lived 2,000 years ago in the area that is now Ireland, the United Kingdom and northern France, celebrated their new year on November 1. This day marked the end of summer and the harvest and the beginning of the dark, cold winter, a time of year that was often associated with human death. (http://www.history.com/topics/halloween)

I would encourage you to read more about it from the aforementioned website; it is fascinating. Halloween is a fun time often filled with mystery and superstition. And, I for one appreciate it for both the lighthearted fun as well as a reminder that winter is approaching (in my part of the world).

 

Grateful for Smiles (TY-12)

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Smiles uplift my spirits, especially the unexpected smiles of strangers. I genuinely appreciate the smiles of others. No matter how my day is going, a smile brings me up.

This simple facial gesture conveys an unspoken message that everything is going to be alright and you are wonderful just as you are. A smile is an expression of kindness in which the joyous spirit of another touches the hearts of all who witness that smile. A smile is easy and simple to do; and, it is a small thing that often makes a big difference in the lives of others. I am very grateful for smiles.

Grateful for Sunshine (TY-10)

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The past couple of days have been beautiful with the sun shining and clear skies. I deeply appreciate the sunshine. It’s radiance and brilliance always lifts my spirits. It was not hot nor was it cold. It was a comfortable temperature, where no jacket was required.

Yesterday, I was able to do a bit outdoor activity…pulling up the last season’s growth to make room for the spring. My husband was able to help me and we enjoyed the sun together. Sasha, my puppy-at-heart dog delighted in helping as she took a hold of the roots and pulled along side with us. We all enjoyed a lovely day together. I do love and appreciate sunny days.

 

Grateful for Giggles (TY-9)

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One of the most delightful sounds I know is laughter. I am grateful for giggles, chuckles and laughter; moreover, the ability to make light of life and embrace humor. As the saying goes, laughter is the best medicine.

I believe that if I can giggle, I can get through most any stressful situation or tragic event in my life. One of the best emotions I know is laughter through tears; because, it is at that moment that I know I will be able to get through whatever heartache or hardship I am experiencing. Even the sound of laughter and giggles triggers joy and happiness.

I believe the giggling uplifts the spirit because it reminds us of times when we are able to laugh and giggle, such as when we were children. To appreciate giggles is to embrace blissfulness. I am grateful for giggles and laughter. (P.S. 2 months until Christmas, LOL).

Grateful for my Family (TY – 6)

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I am so very blessed to have such a wonderful husband and fur-baby. Today we had a super walk together enjoying nature and each other’s company. As you can see from the photo, it was a beautiful day.

I deeply appreciate my husband, Rick, who supports me in countless ways; and, Sasha, my fur-baby, who is more than a fabulous companion. It is important to reflect on the loved ones in our lives and acknowledge their time and gifts that they share with us. Our spouses, our children and our fur-companions each have very significant roles in our lives, which deserve gratitude. Every act that they do, which makes your life more joyous and easier, needs to be recognized, acknowledged and appreciated.

Sometimes, however, when we get caught up in our daily routine and stresses, we forget our loved ones. We take for granted that they will be there for us. While this may usually be true, there will come a time in our lives when they will no longer be with us. It is important to cherish them as often as we can, acknowledge them, appreciate them and love them. They are the ones who are important, not the work, the chores, the daily routine and all the other stuff.

Therefore, I am taking time to think about my family and appreciate them as I write this brief article to thank them. Thank you Rick and Sasha! You are the best part of my life!

Grateful for my Community

I deeply appreciate my community. I live in a small city on the coast of Virginia and we just had our annual seafood festival. It is wonderful to see how wonderfully our community came together to put on such a fabulous festival filled with music, food and artisans. All of our community service groups had booths set up to raise funds for wonderful causes like the Friends of the Library (with which I am a member), the Kiwanis Club, and the Lions Club.

The weather was mostly ideal for it, too. It is a delight to see members of our community celebrate with neighboring communities who visited our seafood festival. I deeply appreciate how the organizers of the event made this year’s festival a success! As I worked in our booth, I could hear positive comments as people passed through, which warmed my heart. I had a great time even though I am drained of all my energy in a positive way.

I am grateful for our community. We know how to come together for events like the seafood festival, as well as, support each other during tragic events like after severe weather that often cause flooding and property damage. Community is so important. Rallying for each other, having fun together, helping each other and appreciating neighbors is all part of creating that community spirit. Expressing gratitude for where you live helps to build a strong community, for which am very grateful!

Grateful for my Physical Senses (TY-3)

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Our ability to see, hear, smell, taste and physically feel is amazing. Those physical sensations are relayed into our human computer (our brain) via specialized sensory receptors (our sensory organs): eyes, ears, nose, tongue (taste buds), skin (nerve endings). I am utterly and deeply grateful for these 5 wonderful physical senses. We often do not think about how wonderful these sensations are until we are without these abilities.

Have you ever experienced a cold (viral infection) where your nose has been compromised so that you cannot smell, nor breathe? It is not too hard to imagine not being able to see or hear, as you can use a blindfold or ear plugs; however, we often do not think about our senses nor appreciate them until our senses are compromised.

I am very grateful for all my physical senses; however, I am especially grateful at this moment for having perfect vision. This was not always the case for me. From the age of about ten, I have been nearsighted and I needed to use eyeglasses and later contact lenses to see distance with clarity. A few years ago, I had corrective eye surgery and I am beyond thrilled of truly being able to see. It is so liberating!

I take extra precautions with my eyes, especially when I go outdoors, by wearing sunglasses. I deeply appreciate my eyes and often give them a break from the computer, television and text as these things can cause eyestrain. It is as simple as closing your eyes and gently placing the palms of your hands over each eye for a minute or so. This activity allows your eyes to relax.

Another great way to pamper your eyes (and your entire physical body) is getting adequate sleep; moreover, it is important that the environment where you sleep is free from as many stimuli as possible (example: lights on various devices such as a clock display or phone charger).  Lights and sounds can prevent your eyes and ears, as well as your brain, from entering into a deep state of relaxation needed to recharge your body.

Think of all the ways we utilize our physical senses daily. There are hundreds of them. Our physical senses are such wonderful gifts of life. I honor and appreciate my eyes, ears, nose, skin and taste buds. Thank you so much!

Grateful for Color (TY-2)

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I am deeply grateful for color and the joy it has brought into my life starting with the first time I experienced sight and seeing my beautiful mother, my first toys, my indoor surroundings and then all the splendors of nature outdoors. I profoundly appreciate color. It delights me as I generously use it in all my artwork. I LOVE color!

Color plays a subtle yet significant role in our lives as it lends itself to how we view the world. Color, of course, would not be visible if it was not for light; so, I am equally grateful to light and its role in color (as well as our eyes…but I will save that for another blog). Color not only adds aesthetics but it also helps us to distinguish things.

A world without color would be bland as we would experience shades of gray with only light and contrast to help us differentiate things. Maybe some of you remember watching programs and movies on the now antiquated black and white television set; then later, television tubes were developed so they could transmit color. It was a marvelous transformation.

Color can also ignite our imagination, as well as, affect our emotions: reds and oranges energize us and blues and greens calm us. Color transforms our world and our lives in so many ways and on so many levels. I deeply appreciate all the color in my life. Thank you, color, for being so full and vivid and a part of the human experience.

 

 

Grateful for My Hands (TY-1)

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My magnificent hands rarely get praise. I do so much with my hands without thinking and thanking my hands. From the moment I arise in the morning, my hands go to work without complaint. Their duties include: turning off the alarm clock; holding my toothbrush to brush my teeth; turning on and off the water in the sink; turning on the shower, washing my hair and body; grabbing a towel and drying myself; grabbing toilet paper, wiping and flushing the toilet; brushing my hair; applying cream and occasionally make-up; opening the closet door and dresser drawers; retrieving various items of clothing; dressing myself; and the list goes on and on and on…and I have not even been awake an hour. You have so many duties and you get so little gratitude.

I want to take this time to really appreciate my hands, as I utilize them to type these very words. Dear hands…thank you…thank you so very much. I deeply appreciate the role you play in my life, allowing me to do so many wonderful and creative things like draw, paint and write. I will take more time from now on to honor you, my hands. I will pamper you with lotion and gently massage you. HANDS… You are magnificent. Thank you so very much!

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