A book is like a garden carried in the pocket. [Chinese proverb]

a book is ike

Of course this weekthe week of Thanksgiving – most blogs and posts will center on being thankful and this will not vary much from that theme.

But what does a book (that truly is a garden of ideas, of possibiilties, of dreams) have to do with being thankful?  It turns out that it means everything. (And, yes, there are times that this WAS my car in traffic carting LOADS of books around with me!)

I keep a Gratitude Journal; in fact I keep three separate journals that I dutifully write in each morning.  One catches five items, people or events for which I am thankful from the previous day. The second makes my mind work to list five words that alphabetically capture happenings or thoughts for which I am grateful and which normally would escape my notice. And the third is five intensions for a well-designed, focused day bringing to the front of my crazy brain the details of how I want to BE as well as what I want to DO so that I play nicely with Time, that devil in disguise!

By doing these three sets of actions, my day starts off (at least) on a positive note. I’m finding that this lasts sometimes all the way through to evening when I finally pull back into my driveway and call out to O’Reilly, my Chorkie, and Jim, my husband.


I love the challenge of a clean page in my journal, the way the ink sets up such logical lists on each page and the way my days, my weeks, my months flow so purposefully through those pages.

I love the smell of a new book arriving from Amazon, a purchase on which I deliberated and purposefully (as opposed to impulsively) went on line to order. I also love the smell of new yearbooks when you first open the box; it’s the magic of the Balfour plant in a box!

I love the research I am doing for MY first book, quite naturally enough a gratitude journal set up to hold those three daily actions of mine in one piece. I’m combing thrift stores for special people’s memoirs (Mary Kay Ash, Glenn Beck, Eleanor Roosevelt just to name three). I’m finding fantastic little books like “A Girl and her Money” by Sharon Durling and “The Power of Giving” by Azim Jamal and Harvey McKinnon and “Wise Up!” by Dr. Gerry D. Fox, all for $1 or less. TREASURES!!!

And so, yes, I’m thankful.

  • I’m grateful for three successful and happy children with wonderful families of their own.
  • I’m grateful for signs from the Universe that I need to slow down.
  • I’m grateful for amazing customers who passionately teach children all day and produce beautiful yearbooks for their communities.
  • I’m grateful for my friends from my sisters in Chi Omega and my almost-sisters in Panhellenic.
  • I’m grateful for all of my ‘new” friends whom I have met through community activities like the Symphony Guild and Hacienda Ranch.
  • I’m grateful for my childhood friends who, by the magic of the internet, stay in my life quite frequently.
  • I’m grateful for the friendship of former students and yearbook nerds who maintain a relationship with me that’s so meaningful.
  • I’m grateful for having my mom still active and energetic in HER life.
  • And I’m oh-so-terribly grateful for my life with Jim and O’Reilly in our cute little cottage by the sea.

Yes, it’s a beautiful life! Who knew?  I do because I stopped long enough to notice and accordingly to give thanks. Happy Thanksgiving, everyone.

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