Grateful Lists and Messy Journals
This is my 10 Thankful Things and Creative Ideas journal.
It’s easier to say “10 Thankful Things” than “10 things for which I am grateful.”
Why, yes, I have a preschooler, why do you ask? Could it be the blue ink scribbled all over the book? Yes, that probably gave it away. I could get upset, but I think that would contradict the title of this diary.
It’s a bit of an understatement that I have an affinity for buying journals. Fresh ones are scattered about the kitchen, car, and living room so that when an idea strikes me, I can write. Several are filled already, so it’s not hoarding quite yet. I also give them away, tear pages out, and let the kids write in them when they need some paper. No, they aren’t a kind of journal into which I pour my deepest secrets, to be sure.
This is one of my favorite colors. The leathery feel of the cover is soft and smooth against my fingers. When I wrote in pen on the cover, it sank into the book so deliciously. I don’t blame her. I imagined that she enjoyed writing on it as much as I did, with each press of the pen into the cover.
This book feels so good to the touch.
I write in it almost daily. Gratitude lifts the spirit. Proverbs says it and research repeats it. So why should I get upset? She obviously enjoyed copying me. She emulated what *I* did, which was writing on the cover. Was I angry with her? Not really. My disappointment didn’t last long.
I am especially drawn to “let the peace of Christ control your hearts” in Colossians 3:12-15. Oh, how I often don’t let the peace of Christ control my heart. Sometimes, I rant and carry on about how things *should* be and how they didn’t meet my expectations. Determination brews up deep within to let peace control me–next time. I have failed enough times in the heat of a moment. Those moments exactly when the peace of Christ should control me so that I don’t give a solid tongue lashing.
Happiness popped out in the pages as I opened the book to investigate damages. How many pages had I lost to her hand? She loves me and wants to be like me. I also reviewed what I recorded those days, and it brought more satisfaction with the memories.
Memories of Thankfulness
We took a trip. I had already forgotten. That day, I brought my book to the car because I wanted to be sure to get my 10 Thankful Things down for the day before I came back home, tired. I asked aloud the question to each member of my family. These are their lovely responses that I transcribed. This has become such an important activity for us, especially while in the car. Everyone gets involved, all the way down to the three year old. She’s exuberant and thankful, too.
On this particular day, the kids had finished with their work and we, the parents, were itching to get out and do something for the afternoon. Carlos’ entry #8: blindfold game. The kids invented a game where one person leads another blindfolded over roots, rocks, and hilly trail. I had forgotten. It’s only 20 days past that beautiful chilly Monday in May and I had left that tender memory aside.
This entry makes me smile. My heart is content and grateful. We sipped on cocoa from the gas station on the way home, it was that chilly. We had packed some Caprisun (which I almost NEVER buy) and Nut Thins. He was also thankful for the sunny and rainy day, and the journey to the park.
Examining his list further reminds me that he is now able to do a full flip on the trampoline and land squarely on his feet. He entertained me with his flips several times, and I had forgotten!
My Own Lists to Remember
Now here we are getting into my “10 Thankful Things” and “10 Creative Things” which the preschooler seems to especially approve. Once I begin writing down creative things, more ideas come. There are an overflow of ideas now and not nearly enough time on my hands.
I really do like my living room, where I can open the window and hear birds outside. That’s where I spend the most time writing, sitting on a sofa and drinking a bullet proof coffee. I am thankful for a preschooler who is in the middle of potty training. She won’t be in diapers much longer.
When the day gets frustrating and long, and the kids are at each other for one thing or another, these things help pull me back to a balanced mental place. For that, I am grateful. It’s like a long hot bath for the soul, centering my heart in the control of the peace of Christ.
May your days be more than ordinary,