Day 73 – LSS Attitude of Gratitude – There is always something to be grateful for.

Today I am grateful for finishing things I have long needed to get done. For unknown reasons I have been procrastinating about the need to finish some things I started. I actually finally finished getting all my Hanukkah decorations put away. I washed all the linens and added them to my Hanukkah buckets. I put the buckets upstairs waiting to be added to the attic storage. It is a wee bit difficult to say goodbye to my holiday. Endings are often bitter sweet.  I had less time with loved ones than I would have liked. I am missing some who are not in this realm anymore. I am praying for others who are not around.

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While I do look forward to time off work getting to make gifts for others and reading for fun, it is also a sad time while everyone else is celebrating. I am not missing others’ celebration, just that mine is over. 


I read an interesting comment on Kveller a couple of days ago.  A gentleman was explaining that he lived in San Francisco in the late 70’s and almost everything was shut down on the 24th and 25th. The only things open were Chinese restaurants and movie theaters. He went to a theater on December 25th and there were only 15 people at the show, all Jewish.  “… Suddenly from the balcony came a very excellent voice sing out, “Hine ma tov u’ma na-im, Shevet achim gam ya-chad”. We all joined in for a chorus and then had a good laugh…”  The lyrics are the first verse of Psalm 133, which reads, “Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!” I can so relate to his story. My spouse and I have gone out a few times on Christmas day just for the uniqueness of being the lone people exploring our surroundings. 

Today I have boxed and re-boxed  some gifts I still need to send out. I keep finding more things I want to add to the packages.  Friends and family have happily notified me that they have received many of my packages. It makes me grateful once I know they have arrived. Not that I have lost faith in the postal service but………… 

I have workedImage result for meme on lesson plans on three different plans for the last two days of the semester. I still don’t know for sure which one I will go with. I guess it depends on my mood tomorrow morning. For some reason I am not in the right place for definite decision making today.  I am grateful that I know what I am doing and I can have a great last few days before break.   

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I am grateful that this morning it wasn’t too cold and I was able to work in my garden. While I was weeding and removing the jacaranda pods, the dog decided she needed to be the planter with me. If you have never tried to pull weeds with a dog going under and over you, you have missed a hilarious opportunity for fun. 


I finally gifted a child’s picnic bench to a friend. My grand-kids have outgrown it and I wanted it to move on to another home. We have discussed it for a long time and I am grateful we finally delivered it. My friend told me of  another thrift store near her that I was unaware of. After dropping off the table we found more books for my aunt at the newly discovered store. 

It has been a busy weekend. I am grateful for finishing chores, completing tasks, and taking a nap when I needed to. I am grateful that I will be ready to drop off items at the post office tomorrow. I am grateful that I have just a few more days before winter break. I am grateful that my house has some assemblance of normalcy again sans all the buckets and boxes. 




Day 72 – LSS Attitude of Gratitude. There is always something to be grateful for.

Today I am grateful that a friend spoke of a topic I should write about. My spouse and I have developed a habit of going out Saturday mornings and hitting the thrift stores. I really enjoy it, especially when I have a goal in mind.  It seems when I have specific intentions of finding things I often do.  Good karma follows me there. Our first stop on Saturday morning is a thrift store that is extremely large. It used to be a chain grocery store once upon a time.   

By the time my spouse wakes up I have usually been up for a few hours getting things done. I usually try to get my schoolwork finished in the morning. In good weather I go outside early in the morning and work on my yard. It grounds me and makes me feel good about it being the weekend. I wonder if I will do the same next year???? 

Related image When the weather is cold I try to get chores done in the house. There is much to be done outside tomorrow. The rain and wind have left a mess in the backyard. The dog does not like to go in the lower yard because it is full of pods from the jacaranda tree. So we will clean it up for her in the morning.


Anyway back to my fun pursuit of treasures. Today I am grateful that I found one more season of a series I am trying to complete. I am looking for three more of the eight seasons.



I was successful at finding yet another attractive bowling ball today. I am gifting three or four for the holidays. I have purchased the necessary rebar and poles for them already. I am persistent in the hunt for a treasure  that others see as rubbish. 


Lettering Set (Part 11) by Noel Shiveley, via BehanceI found three more books for my aunt. We will make a date to see her over our winter break. I am so grateful that she enjoys reading so much and that I can add to her collection of material she likes.   

I found a couple of other books for myself and my spouse. We went to a second thrift store 45 minutes away after visiting a bagel shop where they actually make the bagels themselves. YUM   We ate outside in the beautiful 74 degree weather. We had a long conversation with strangers who had their new rescue dog with them. I am grateful that loving pets makes a universal connection.

The second thrift store has CDs, DVDs, and books exclusively. We found way too many items. Oh wait, you can’t find too many items at a thrift store. They had more books for my aunt, more CDs for my spouse, and more books for me. It was a pleasurable morning. 


I have been blessed with friends who do things rather than buy things: friends who will change books at the library, take a bag of your old clothes to a thrift store, bring you cuttings and plant them in a window box, fill the bird feeder in your garden when you can’t get out. Maeve Binchy

We went to the green grocery store before coming home and I am grateful they had wonderful fresh fruit at reasonable prices.  Luckily here in So Cal there is usually a good variety of fresh fruit at reasonable prices all year long. 

 I  am grateful for my weekend excursions. 

Day 71 – LSS Attitude of Gratitude – There is always something to be grateful for.

Today I am grateful for positive communication with others. Via email both school and personal I interacted with a couple of people in a very positive way. I had communications that affirmed that I was doing the right thing. It made me feel both justified and happy.

Positive Affirmations: I am in charge of how I feel and today I am choosing happiness.

I  am working hard on not letting others define my happiness, and yet when I receive accolades for something I have done, it does make me happy. I need to be happy regardless of what others say to me. I need to choose happiness because I deserve it. I need to feel happiness and gratitude for all the good things in my life. I try to choose happiness and most days I am successful.


I had a very good and busy day at work. The students were on task and eager to finish up assignments for the end of the semester. I had lunch with a friend and we discussed plans for the rest of the semester. We are both feeling the need for a break. I expressed gratitude that my holiday celebrations were over already.

I will hopefully spend winter break reading, cleaning, and making gifts for some extended family members. I look forward to having some “me” time. That doesn’t happen very often. I still haven’t put away all of my Hanukkah decorations, so that is a task I should complete before school is out next week. 

Positive Affirmations: I am enough.

I am grateful that I am moving toward the end of the school year with hope that I can get my ducks in a row to complete my withdrawal from my vocation. A bittersweet journey is ahead. I can say that others who ventured before me have regaled me with the joys of having their own time to do their own thing.


This being Friday night, I know I have a few days to catch up on some school chores and some home chores. I am grateful for the weekend even though I have 150 + quizzes to grade. I can hopefully finish them while we go driving to thrift stores tomorrow.

Random Thoughts of Gratefulness

More books arrived on my doorstep and I am grateful that I get to check one more thing off my list.

I am grateful for finishing the week feeling better.

I am grateful for having the special cards I need to send off  tomorrow.

I am grateful for having all my laundry done. 

I am grateful for sticking with this blogging adventure. 

I am grateful for the sweet cards I received from a couple of friends.

I am grateful for my grand-kids happiness with what they purchased for Hanukkah.   

I am grateful for my flannel sheets and my warm heater.



Day 70 – LSS Attitude of Gratitude – There is always something to be grateful for.

Today I am grateful for finally understanding why I was so “off” today. I had plans to meet up someone I care about and plans had to be changed. I was disappointed but I totally understood the reason for the cancellation. The day kind of went downhill from there. Other plans were changed and then the evening was ‘off” also.  I couldn’t quite figure out what was going on. I just knew I wasn’t feeling right.  I had difficulty staying awake after school and then got little sleep all night. I had weird dreams when I did sleep and then long periods of being awake. It took quite a while for me to realize my pain level was so high and that I wasn’t dealing with it.  I couldn’t function properly and I should have taken some pain meds to deal with my body pain. Instead I tried to pretend I was OK and just move on. I usually do a good job of listening to my body and what it needs. On this day I didn’t listen and I suffered the consequences. Lesson Learned!

Day 69 – LSS Attitude of Gratitude – There is always something to be grateful for.

Today I am grateful for small celebrations with people I care about. Today our staff had their holiday breakfast. I did not partake of any of the food as I know most of it was laden in pork. It truly didn’t matter to me because I was there for the comradery. Then we had a lunch birthday celebration for my work husband. We have been teaching together for thirty years. It is nice to share his birthday with our grade level teachers. He and I are both considering the future and what is next for us. 

My fellow teachers and staff are all looking forward to the winter break. It is a trying time with silly middle school kids. They are so scattered at this time of year but are also so kind and caring. Everyone is looking forward to some family time. Some are traveling far away and some are planning to spend quiet days at home.     

This is the second hardest holiday season of my life. The most difficult was right after my mom passed away. Now three years later I still mourn her not being in my life. My close family is even smaller this year and I am working to accept the things I cannot change. I recognize that I am in a much better place than I was a few months ago. That does not mean I do not feel the loss, it just means that I am grateful for the growth I have made.   

I am grateful tonight that I have a I have a family I love, I have a job I love,  I have coworkers I love, I have friends I love, and I have a pet I love. I have so much to grateful for.

I was lucky enough to have had a sweet holiday that I shared with family, coworkers, and friends. I am lucky because I get to spend my winter break making gifts for extended family. I am lucky because I sent off almost all of my gifts on time. I am lucky because I plan on spending lots of time reading over the break, as that is a gift of time I don’t always give myself.   

It was a good day today. I am grateful for all that I have and that I have all that I need. 

Day 68 – LSS Attitude of Gratitude – There is always something to be grateful for.

Today I am grateful for the people who surround me with understanding. 

Hurt Quotes

I am grateful that those that really care about me know that if I don’t feel like conversing, or being jolly that is OK. While I adore this time of year with all its celebrations, it is also a time of feeling loss of those not here.


Hurt Quotes


Tonight I am acutely aware of the many wonderful people who are around me and care about me. People who have the ability to understand where I have been and where I am now. There are people in my life who make me smile and remind me that it is OK to smile and be happy. Life throws us some curve balls and it important to know how to get out of the way when necessary.   

I am grateful that sometimes I can be the one who shares an experience that helps someone else. I always try to be helpful when I can and it makes me happy that I have more and more good days.

Hurt Quotes



Day 67 – LSS Attitude of Gratitude – There is always something to be grateful for.

Today I am grateful for the well being of my fellow bloggers, family, and friends. I sit here and complain how much my body hurts when the temperatures reach the 50s and below. My friends and family are facing much more difficult times with extremes on both ends of the thermometer.

One is dealing with the high 90s and extreme humidity. I worry about the effect of the extreme weather on her physical well being. Some family are dealing with extreme snow and are worried about losing power. I have family in the Mid-West, on the East Coast, in the South, as well as in Canada. The majority of them are dealing with difficult weather. I worry about their safety and welfare in cold temperatures. For reasons beyond my understanding they like to live where there is snow. I have to agree with Ansel Adams.  Bad weather makes for good photography. – Ansel Adams  In my humble opinion, a short visit and a good camera are the only redeeming qualities of snow. 


I know the snow is beautiful and all that but I am not, nor have I ever been a fan of snow.  I have lived in CA for all but a year of my  life. My family moved to the east coast for one year when I was in middle school. I hated it. It actually snowed on my birthday in late spring. G-d willing , I will never live in snow, as I am spoiled by the weather in my state. While in my youth I liked to visit the snow, I never wanted to make it a way of living.  A lot of people like snow. I find it to be an unnecessary freezing of water.  ~Carl Reiner



Obviously my fellow bloggers are all over the world. I worry when I hear about them being affected by poor weather. I am grateful when I hear that they are OK and not in eminent danger. Bad weather is not something I care to deal with. I am grateful we can decide what environments make us happy.

Christmas In California song.     Christmas time in California

california-christmas  Sandman Resists Melting Process

My idea of holiday weather.


Stay safe and stay warm my dear friends and family.

Day 66 – LSS Attitude of Gratitude – There is always something to be grateful for.

 I am grateful for the 8th night of Hanukkah. We had breakfast with the family at IKEA as usual. The grand kids love Swedish pancakes. while waiting for our food my daughter was kind enough to share her lovely pictures with me this morning. She knows the camera on my phone is cracked and her pictures are wonderful.

Lighting candles and saying prayers last night before eating. 

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16 14 15.jpeg                                          Hugs from sweet Z’s.  

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I am grateful for happy kids who are so sweet and grateful for time spent together for Hanukkah.

Tonight is peaceful and quiet, maybe a bit too quiet. The last night of Hanukkah is tonight and tomorrow the decorations will be put away. (If I have the energy.)  Two more weeks until winter break and I am happy that I will have my holiday complete. I am grateful that I will have time to make gifts for some extended family far away.

Two minor miracles (a bit of a stretch but I choose to use the term here.) happened today. I sent one gift overseas and it arrived in time for Hanukkah. I was convinced it would not make it, but it did. I also sent a Hanukkah gift to my aunt. She received it in time for Hanukkah also. I am grateful that she enjoys reading so much as a spry nonagenarian. (I had to look up that term.)   I am grateful for the family and friends that I can share my holiday with.




Day 65- LSS Attitude of Gratitude – There is always something to be grateful for.

I am grateful for the celebrating of the 7th night of Hanukkah. I have gathered the seven gifts for the beautiful Z children. My spouse and I are happy with the ability to share with them this holiday. Sadly my daughter is ill and debated not coming so as to not get us sick. I told her to come anyway and I would feed her and send her off to bed. That way she will actually get a night’s rest and the kids can have fun with us. I am OK taking care  of a house full of loved ones.   The candles are set out on the multiple menorah’s awaiting the hands and prayers of family.   

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8 Days Of Hanukkah

Seven Bridges   night 7

So I reused the giant boxes that the dog bed and supplies came in for the Z’s. Spouse thinks it is mean because there are eight small presents in the boxes. I think it is funny. We shall see.  Outside is ready for their arrival too.

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Awaiting their arrival…I’ll Be back

Family arrived and we had a lovely time. Candles were lit and prayers were said.

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Dinner was enjoyed by all. The Z’s actually tried the chicken Parmesan and two of the three liked it and had seconds.

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We finished our yummy dinner and enjoyed dark chocolate brownies in honor of today being what would have been my mother’s 88th birthday.  The kids knew the table had to be cleared in order to open gifts so everyone pitched in to help.    

I am so proud of my grand kids. I warned them that the boxes were large but the gifts as usual, were small. They were so very polite and appreciative of the dreidel, the games, the DVDs, the candy, the books, the small games, etc. It made my heart warm that they were not greedy in any sense. 

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Z2 was excited by the small container of Starbucks hot chocolate and asked if she could make it immediately. I asked the kids to sit on the hearth and open the container at the same time. They were very excited to say the least that they each got a gift card to purchase something of their choice. They even allowed me take more silly pictures of them in the large boxes.

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So after cleaning up and Z1 and Z2 contemplating what they might buy, Z3 asked if we could watch his movie.  Everyone got comfy and snuggled up to watch Incredibles 2.

So I am enjoying the last minutes of night seven of Hanukkah. Z3 fell asleep already. Z1 and Z2 are holding on but will fall asleep soon.

My heart is happy. Even though I am sad for family I do not have with me, I am so grateful for those still here in my life.



Day 64 – LSS Attitude of Gratitude – There is always something to be grateful for.

Today I am grateful for the fact that today is the sixth night of Hanukkah. It was the last day to celebrate at school. I decided to give every student a free homework pass as a gift. I fashioned a pass out of a dreidel clip art design. I accomplished two goals by creating the pass. As students completed their assignment they brought it to me to record. I then gave them their pass. I enjoyed being able to give each child a holiday greeting. There are limited opportunities to share personal appreciation for every student. While every good morning, have a good day, and thank you is responded to, this feels more acknowledging.   

I am grateful that  my chosen profession allows me to impact so many lives. A special experience occurred today at work. A substitute teacher for a core mate came in my room to ask for my assistance this morning. She asked if I had changed my name and I confirmed that more than 20 years ago I remarried. She then informed me that she was my student in 6th grade so many years ago. I found it amusing that all day long my students kept coming in to my class telling me that their substitute was a former student of mine.      

“We never know which lives we influence, or when, or why.”
― Stephen King, 11/22/63

After school I came home to work on preparing for my grand kid’s visit tomorrow. I am excited to visit with them and spend time sharing Hanukkah with them. Guest beds were refreshed and warm quilts were applied. The kids are excited to get to visit with the dog. This will be the first time they will see her since we adopted her. I am not sure how confusing it will be for both sides. I am grateful for the ability to help out the kids and the dog. Annie is already joyfully running our house.   

I am grateful for the ability to get special things to have at my house for the kids. They know that Nana and Grandpa like to overindulge them. My spouse orders candy from Sweden to spoil their appetite. The “cars” are enjoyed by the Z’s as well as my daughter. We purchase the Blue Machine Naked juice they love so much. I make three varieties of  mac and cheese to cater to dietary restrictions as well as specific preferences. I shall possibly attempt to make latkes. It is a labor intensive process but the outcome is so yummy.  I am grateful that they have very healthy appetites.   

On this the sixth night of Chanukkah I am grateful for my home that has space to welcome my family. Happy 6th night

The sixth light is the light of love. When the love which our parents gave us makes all our lives beautiful, we learn to understand the biblical words: “Thou shalt love the Lord thy G-d with all your heart and soul and might”…

I am grateful that I am almost finished shopping for the kids. Our goal is to usually give seven small gifts and one special gift. This becomes more difficult as they get older and are much more specific with their tastes and wants. It is still fun going on the hunt for what we hope will make the holiday fun for them.

While we will only be able to celebrate for one night with the kids I am still trying to pass on traditions with them. Each person will light a menorah tomorrow night. The kids will each get a dreidel, a game, a book, a DVD (typically educational), possibly PJ’s, favorite candy treats, and something special for each child.

Happy 6th night of Hanukkah.

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