Friday, November 25, 2011

Annual Thanksgiving Thought

I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving and are now ready to brave the next holiday season… Christmas. More about that subject later. Today, I‘d like to talk about some of the things I’m grateful for. Like most of you, this has been a financially challenging year, with a lot of changes, some more welcome than others, so it’s been easy to get a overwhelmed by all those problems and difficulties.
In order to keep my balance, and my sanity, I decided to start paying attention to the many good little things that happen in my life every day. The things I don’t often consider, but that make my life a little bit brighter. 

 Gift 1 – No snow. I’m not a big fan of snow. I don’t mind it up in the mountains, or hanging artistically in the bare branches of the trees, but I cannot stand it underfoot. I hate to drive on it, I hate to walk on it and I don’t really like to shovel it.  I prefer to visit it on special occasions, and then return home without the threat of slush or black ice. So far this year the snow has been very considerate and stayed off the sidewalks and streets .  I’m grateful that we are still snow free.

Gift 2 – Do you ever wish you could thank the person in the next car that lets you move into a crowded lane or pass into the street from the grocery store parking lot during rush hour? The one who doesn’t honk, even when the light turned green 2 seconds before and you haven’t hit your accelerator pedal yet. I love those drivers who don’t feel the need to ride up my tail pipe on the freeway if I don’t change lanes as quickly as they might wish, or who manage to avoid an accident, even when it’s me that’s made the mistake. To all considerate and kind drivers on the road, I’m very grateful to you.

Gift 3 – A baby’s smile. I don’t believe there is anything that can make me feel more important and of more value than when I’m standing in the checkout line at the grocery store, and a little one in the cart ahead looks up, meets my eyes and offers a huge toothless grin. It’s like somehow I was chosen from among all the other shoppers to receive that angelic manifestation, or that the innocence of youth saw something in me worthy of joy.  So to all the sweet and happy young children that smile at strangers, I’m grateful to you.

Gift 4 – Everyday there is something that goes my way, some bit of luck or chance of timing that makes my world go a little smoother. Hitting all green lights on my way to work, getting the last discount blouse in my size on the shopping rack, enjoying a full night sleep with a really sensational dream, or stepping out my front door just in time to see the most spectacular sunset ever. I am grateful for all those little, almost meaningless moments that mean so much to me.

Because Christmas is now on its way, bringing the temptation to get lost in the stress and guilt of creating the perfect holiday with less and less resources every year, I think it’s important to keep our eyes open for those exceptional instants that happen every day. I’m trying to keep that attitude of gratitude going through the next month and into the New Year.
What are you thankful for?

Saturday, November 5, 2011

We Have Overcome!

A few weeks ago, I sent out a call to all my faithful readers to help get our economy back on track by going out and spending. I explained that according to the radio… which we all know is second only to Google in being an authority on generally everything… we as a nation were headed for another recession because consumer confidence was down and we were afraid to shop.

Thanks to my small but faithful following of readers, last quarter consumer spending was up by 2%, as reported by - the radio. We did what no politician or economic guru has been able to do. By getting out there and spending money, we are saving our economy.

I must humbly take credit for getting this economic reversal going, but I could not have done it without all of you and your tireless feet, shopping the heck out of stores and malls through the country. Only in America can we go out, with basically no money in our pockets and shop our country back onto the road to recovery.

I have been asked by several sources if my success in this great economic achievement has inspired any more lofty political aspirations. In fact, I have been getting letters from the Mitt Romney campaign for weeks. I haven’t actually opened them, but I’m certain he’s concerned about his chances in running against a woman shopper-of-the-people like myself.

For the record, I do not plan on running for president. I feel like one of the first qualifications for a leader of the free world is to have a handle on keeping their own house bathrooms clean. So, for at least another four years, or until all my kids move out, I will not be running for any public office.

I am, however, available for any White House dinners, shopping mall grand openings, or private consultations. I am an American, and I must do what I can.

One last note. I can only take credit for this startlingly good financial news, with the understanding that I can’t be accountable for everything. After all our hard work, should the economy dip again, Mr. President… we know where to place the blame!

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