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Ten Things of Thankful: Autumn Edition (I'm Serious this Time!)

The swamp coolers got covered up this week, and the thermostats got turned back on.  The heater has been blowing warm air into the cool house, and I have started wearing sweaters again.  Summer might make an appearance here and there in the next few months, but for the most part, I think it's safe to say that it is now fall.  I love fall!

This week we held our monthly Relief Society meeting at church. We talked about Thanksgiving, and separated it into "thanks" and "giving."  Because we are thankful, we give.  We had various projects set up around the room.  We wrote cards to young men and women from our ward who are serving missions, we wrote cards to someone who is recovering from an illness, and we made fleece blankets for children in foster care.  Before we did any of those projects, though, we had an activity that was well-received and made us all smile.  We each had a piece of paper, with two holes punched at the top, and with a string through the holes.  We put our name at the top, then put the string over our heads, with the paper on our backs.  We each had a pencil, and we wrote notes of gratitude on everyone's paper.  When we had finishing writing, we took off our papers and silently read what was written about us.  

Photo:  Relief Society sisters in a line, each writing on the paper that hangs on the back of the sister in front of her

1.  I'm thankful for my church friends, and for their examples of Christlike love and service.

2.  I'm thankful for those who came up with the ideas, set up, and carried out the Relief Society night.

Normally, I am at least there in time to help set up, but the activity was happening on John's birthday this month.  John and I (and youngest daughter) went out to dinner, then came home for cake. Daughter and I arrived at the church just about the time the activity was starting.  

3.  I'm thankful for flexibility and understanding--on the part of both the church sisters and John.  

4.  I'm thankful for Donna, Deedee's co-raiser.  Puppies are wonderful, and also a lot of work.  It's nice to share the responsibility with someone.  

I think it's fairly common knowledge that I do not take to desert living the same way a duck takes to water.  (Oh, I crack myself up!) I do, however, truly enjoy some aspects of desert living, such as thankfuls 5 and 6:

5.  I'm thankful for tumbleweeds.  It makes me feel like I live in the wild west when I have to avoid tumbleweeds when I leave my subdivision.  Yee haw!

Photo:  A huge tumbleweed travels down the road, as I wait to make a left-hand turn

6.  I'm thankful for the fact I can harvest a home-grown watermelon in November.  It was delicious, too! 

Photo:  A recently-harvested watermelon

7.  I'm thankful for patient choir members.  I have been asked to accompany the ward choir for the Christmas program this year, and my fingers can be quite creative--and not in a good way.  The director and choir members are patient with me as I try to play the right notes, in the right key, in the right time signature, and at the right time.  They haven't  yet taken me up on my offer to sing a cappella, though I continue to suggest it.  

8.  I'm thankful for my mom.  If she notices that I haven't blogged in a couple of days, she checks in with me to make sure I'm OK. That's so sweet.  

9.  I'm thankful for someone who probably wishes to remain anonymous, who did something brave this week by fulfilling an obligation even though it was difficult and involved public speaking.  I'm so proud of her and her example of courage and determination!

10.  I'm thankful for John.  He makes me laugh.  We attended a baptism on Saturday morning, then needed to pick up our co-op produce box.  We drove directly from the church to the pick-up location.  As we pulled into the parking lot to pick up our food, John quipped, "I didn't know this was a casual event."  We were definitely overdressed for picking up produce!  

John also makes me feel appreciated.  Because of our callings in the church, we both have lots of meetings on Sundays, so we take two cars to church.  This afternoon, we left home at about the same time, but in separate cars.  John arrived at the church shortly before I did, but as I pulled up, I noticed he was waiting for me.  He opened my car door for me, and we walked in together.  

John also does the dishes! I'm thankful for his ability to know when that is exactly what would help me out.  

Photo:  John at the sink, washing dishes
How has your week gone?  Dodged any tumbleweeds?  Harvested any watermelon?  Hit a wrong note and lived to tell the tale?  Let us know what you are thankful for!

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  1. hey! I did that once! (the tumbleweed thing)… on my last road trip… I was driving from the Petrified Forest back to Phoenix and, out of nowhere, there was, like 'instant storm', the wind trying to blow my rental car off the road and…and! there were tumbleweeds! I laughed out loud (alone in my rental car)…very grateful for the excellent special effects!

    FRIST, by any chance?
    )Dyanne's been a total FRIST machine this weekend, everywhere!!)

    1. Frist it is! (Where's Dyanne now?)
      Tumbleweeds are a fairly common occurrence here--I'm constantly gathering them out of my yard--but they make me laugh every time.

  2. That game at the Relief Society sounds really fun. I'd like to play it with my family on at a holiday gathering I think. You had a good week - Happy Birthday to John. I love seeing a man in the kitchen.

    1. That would be a good game for a holiday gathering!
      When I was taking John's picture, he said, "This really isn't necessary," but I knew it was! :-)

  3. The individual notes from the Relief Society activity will be treasured in each persons' heart for a long time. Well done!

  4. That watermelon is beautiful! I picked a red tomato today. How about that for crazy? I am glad you are getting some fall weather.

  5. I can't really see them well and haven't checked one out up close, but something about the idea of a tumble weed is a little freaky to me.
    The home grown watermelon sounds nice though.
    Lucky you to have such a supportive spouse. Something to be thankful for, for sure.
    Have a great week.

    1. It would be unnerving to meet a moving tumbleweed, if you couldn't notice it coming.

  6. I have yet to make it to the part of the country where tumbleweed roll. I look forward to the day! :)
    Happy Birthday John!
    Nice watermelon! How fortunate to still have something growing in the garden!

    1. Our local ball park used to have a "Tumbleweed Tuesday" promotion: 2 for 1 tickets when you bring in a tumbleweed! I have no idea what they did with the gathered tumbleweeds, though.
      I'll pass along the greetings.
      I picked the watermelon when we had a frost warning--I knew it wouldn't survive a cold night.

  7. I can only describe last week as challenging. This week will be much better and much easier.

  8. Your homegrown watermelon is impressive. How neat to see tumbleweeds!

    1. Thank you. We only got one watermelon from the plant this year.

  9. I just mentioned to someone the other day how we never see the big watermelons like the stores used to sell. All we see here are the round ones. It sounds like you will be busy practicing the piano. You are so brave. When I look at the what the accompanists have to play for our choir music, I think how glad it is not me trying to play all those notes! It sounds like a fun RS activity. I'm glad you were able to almost be two places at once, thanks to those who helped make that possible.

    1. Brave is one word for it. :-) I hope my fingers cooperate.

  10. We've seen a lot of tumbleweeds during our trips through the US, but just like you, they keep giving me that Wild West feeling. Love them!
    What a great thing that you have such temps you can still harvest a melon now. We've had autumn-weather for over 2 months now and it will soon get 'wintery' here.... How I wished I lived in a desert-type land. Would trade you if I could.
    Well, John, just like my Henk, is about the perfect husband. We're lucky girls having men like them!

    1. I had to harvest the watermelon the day that frost was predicted that night. It's getting pretty chilly at night now.

      We definitely are lucky! :-)

  11. When I was a kid we lived in Port Hueneme and we had tumbleweeds blow through there all the time. Now, when I go up the I-5 and see the tumbleweeds, it always brings back memories. I agree with you, that desert living isn't my thing, glad for the most part it is working out for you. I would love to live north of LA just so I didn't have to get around it...


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