|A bright rainbow, with a fainter double rainbow above it|
John and I have been busy this week taking care of things around the yard and house, and the result is now being able to enjoy a more beautiful yard and a more organized and clean house. We've had rain and rainbows, gathered with family to celebrate my in-laws anniversary, and gathered with friends to celebrate the life of a neighbor gone too soon.
I have a pad of paper that has printed on the top of each page, "Lists Make Me HAPPY." It's true. Lists allow me to see what I want to accomplish, but also let me see what I have done. I like to see on paper what is OK to postpone until later, too. Having it written down means I won't forget it, but it doesn't take priority right now. Right now, I can relax for a moment and just enjoy.
Lists also allow me to look back and review what I am thankful for! (How's that for a segue?) Without further ado:
1. I'm thankful that the road leading up to my neighborhood is now freshly repaved and repainted. Driving on a smooth road is so much better than dodging potholes.
2. I'm thankful for John's ability to create on the computer personalized budget programs. I know there are commercial programs available, but I prefer what John writes. From the early days of our marriage, I've relied on his computer skills to make programs that allow us to manage our money. Over the years, the program has been tweaked to more accurately reflect our financial situation at the time. John recently revamped the whole program to fit retirement years. Just as lists make me happy, budget programs make me happy because I can see how the numbers work. (Don't ask me to understand HOW he makes the program, but I can see how things balance out.)
3. I'm thankful also for John's ability to take a hillside that was a problem area and turn it into a thing of beauty. We've been in our home for 4 years, and the backyard has gone from an unfenced, wild sagebrush covered hill to a fenced, more tame and useful area. This week John put the finishing touches on the newest planting bed. It looks good now, and we're looking forward to seeing the shrubs and flowers fill in the space.
|Landscape timbers define a planting bed on a hill. An oak and a crabapple tree anchor the spot, with various shrubs and perennials filling in around. Bark mulch carpets the space.|
|Same subject, different angle. The planting bed ends at a dry creek. A trampoline sits behind the plants.|
4. I'm thankful that John was able to try out his new snake stick, AND that the "practice snake" was just a big gopher snake, and not a rattlesnake. The stick works well and no snakes were harmed in the process.
5. I'm thankful for a yummy loaf of zucchini bread, and even more so for the friends who brought it over.
6. I'm thankful for fresh produce from our garden. The raspberries have been extremely productive this summer, and we have many quarts of frozen berries in the freezer, freezer jam that should last the year, and plenty of raspberries for fresh eating and baking. I harvested some rhubarb too, and made a delicious raspberry rhubarb crisp. I don't think this next statement is going to be true for too much longer, but so far, I have managed to keep up with the summer squash and haven't had to harvest any baseball bat sized squash yet. That makes me happy.
7. I'm thankful for John's family. We got together with some of his siblings and his parents this week to celebrate his parents' anniversary. It's nice to live close enough to do that.
8. I'm thankful for neighbors. We did attend a funeral this week, and while the occasion was sad, it is nice to see how neighbors come together to help each other.
9. I'm thankful for Drexel, our happy dog. He's sleeping at my feet right now, but always wags his tail when we talk to him. When I picked him up from the groomer after his bath recently, the groomer mentioned that Drexel's tail is wagging throughout the entire process. I believe it. Tail wags at the vet. Tail wags at the groomer. Tail wags all the time he is being addressed. Good dog, Drexel.
10. I'm thankful for John, not just for the specific reasons mentioned previously, but in general, too. Not only do we love each other, we like each other, too. It's nice to be married to my best friend.