Thursday, October 25, 2012

Thankful Thursday 10/25/12

We just got back from "Math Night" at my kids' school. There are lots of math-related activities. Tonight we estimated the weight of a pumpkin, graphed different varieties of candy corn (white chocolate and green apple- who knew?) and launched tennis balls at targets.

I am thankful for my kids everyday...just look at these faces!


Tonight I was reminded how thankful I am for their school and their teachers. These men and women are so creative and patient, and I know they truly care about my children. Tonight my youngest daughter's teacher, Mrs. N, told my husband and I that we need to have two more kids so I can send them to Central. When I asked her why, she said, "Because the two you already have are so awesome!" What a compliment!

I am thankful for the adults in my life who care about my kids, teach them, and keep them safe. They really are partners in raising my daughters.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Thankful Thursday 10/11/12

As I mentioned a few days ago, reinstating my Thankful Thursday posts is one way I can work towards my goal of health, my One Little Word for this year.

I am thankful for our neighbors. It is so nice for my kids to have so many friends living next door, and the hubs and I have made new friends, too. We all end up hanging out or doing something together at least once a week!
 
I am thankful for my Kindle Fire. Seriously, I just love that thing. Everyone else in the house loves it too- I barely have a chance to use it these days!
 
I am thankful that my youngest daughter is discovering a love for Harry Potter! She's been an avid reader for quite a while now, but I think it's exciting that we'll get to have discussions about some of my favorite characters ever.
 
I am thankful that my husband was able to buy a new guitar. He's patiently waited for one for over a year, and I love listening to him play in the evenings.

I love the sense of fulfillment and gratitude this practice cultivates. Definitely good for my mental health!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Update on One Little Word 2012: Health

I didn't follow through with my One Little Word album this year, but I have been reflecting this past week on what I have accomplished toward my goal of health. Some things were deliberate, and some just luck. What else can I do in these last few months of the year?

Physical health- Through some rough medical treatments, time, and a little luck, I am now in remission from Meniere's disease and Relapsing Polychondritis. I returned to work in December of last year. I have worked hard to lose over 50 pounds so far, and have been able to discontinue two of my medications. Good progress here!

Mental health- Feeling good physically has definitely helped my mental outlook as well. I can't think of anything I've really put into practice to help in this area. To do: re-establish weekly "Thankful Thursday" posts. This is such a great way to keep perspective.

Relationship health- I think I've done a great job here this year. My family and I took a long-anticipated vacation to Disney World this past spring, and we all had a great time! We made some great memories that will last for years to come. I (only partially willingly) took a new position at work, and I've worked for months to accept the realities of my new job. Some of the benefits are that I am able to establish a different sort of relationship with the families I support, and build new professional connections as well. My husband and I just celebrated our 12 year anniversary with a quick get-away. We considered various locations, but in the end we consciously spent our time at a secluded cabin. This trip was about US, not about doing stuff.

Financial health- I admit, the report is not so great here. Sure, we're paying all the bills and afforded a couple of vacations this year, but our savings is still stagnant. To do: make a plan to boost up that account a little- E-bay? Making and selling cards or crochet projects? Yard sale?

I have three more months to focus on health, and I'm looking forward to what I can accomplish. I hope that health continues to linger in my mind, as calm (my One Little Word from 2011) has thus far. A few ideas are percolating pertaining to next year's word, too! Some seem obvious to me, but one or two words caught me by surprise but are persistently creeping into my conscious- one of these words keeps popping up in my blog posts. Can you guess what it is?

Do you have a special word or quote that helps move you forward?

Monday, October 1, 2012

Book Review: Lone Wolf by Jodi Picoult

Lone WolfLone Wolf by Jodi Picoult
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Most people either really love Jodi Picoult or really don't. I am generally a neutral party- some of her books I love, some are just so-so for me. This book definitely fell into the "love" category.

The whole story just feels so raw. Painful family relationships are juxtaposed with close encounters with wolves, both in captivity and in the wild. I know this sounds like a strange combination, but it works.

Luke is a father of two and a wolf activist. He not only leaves his family for almost two years to live in the wild, he also maintains a pack in captivity. He has dedicated his life to preservation and education.

Luke's daughter, Cara, moves in with him after her parents divorce. Edward, Cara's older brother, packed up and left the country when he was just 18. The estranged siblings are thrown together when tragedy strikes and Luke is in a coma.

I won't give away the rest of the book, because the major drama and emotion in the book comes from the siblings' differing views on end-of-life decisions.

This was touching and heart-wrenching, at times even painful. But beautifully done!

View all my reviews
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