Three Good Things Revisited

Cat_243_dover_23 by Mary Jo   

I've invoking the Wench Classic Clause today.  Partly that's because I'm insanely trying to finish a book so I can transfer the burden from my computer to that of my YA editor.  But also, I wrote this blog four years again and it ran just before Christmas in 2006, so it seemed like a good topic to revisit.  So here goes!

There’s lots of warm fuzzy sentiment in the air just now, most of it generated by the multiple holidays at this season.  (Happy Winter Solstice to everyone!)  There’s lots of gatherings with family and friends, often presents and parties, and waaaaaaay too much unhealthy but delicious food and drink on offer. 

Stressors:

It’s a good season—but for many of us, stress levels are off the scale.  I had my hair done today, and my lovely and efficient hair stylist was dealing with the considerable demands of being a business owner, wife, mother, grandmother, serious church volunteer, providing refreshments for clients and a holiday meal for her staff.  She was two clients behind when she finished me, and it was still morning. Part of this was because a long time client had to be squeezed in because of a death in the family.  My stylist will survive and even enjoy the holidays, but relaxed?  Not hardly!

And there are worse stresses, like the client who had just lost her nephew.  Like the writer friend who posted that her family has just found out that her son-in-law’s return from Afghanistan has been moved further away—and his unit will redeploy there after six months back in the States.   

Holiday tensions in general:

Even with less dramatic circumstances, holidays can be a letdown that don’t live up to our hopes and expectations.  Our nearest and dearest can get on our nerves, and family relationships that are already tense can go into meltdown.  Not to mention the traditional arguments about whose family to visit, and the conflicts in mixed religion households.

Accentuating the positive: 

So I’m here to offer, if not a cure, at least a palliative.  <G>  Jo recently mentioned a study she’d read about that showed that even pessimistic people started feeling happier if they did exercises that required them to write down  positive things in Xmas candle their lives–events and people they were grateful for. Times when they felt good about themselves.  Consciously appreciating and thinking positive even raised their happiness scale six months down the road.

Three good things:

A simple form of this exercise is to relax and think of three good things that happened to you today.  Maybe you can do it when you go to bed, rather than thinking of all the stuff that needs to be done tomorrow.  Only three good things. 

Some examples.

1) Two days ago, I got around to hanging my bird feeder, and all of a sudden I have beautiful birds munching seeds a foot and a half from my dining room window.  This morning I glanced out the next window, and there in the midst of lush rhododendron greenery was a brilliant red cardinal, less than five feet away from me and looking like a Christmas card as he waited patiently for his turn.

Cardinal Actually, maybe he wasn’t patient, maybe he was plotting a hostile takeover of the birdfeeder and a terrorization of finches, but he sure looked pretty!  Often we get too busy to appreciate nature, but even a single image like this can leave me smiling.  Look for nature, and enjoy it. 

Charlottes_web 2) Another good thing: while on the way to my hairdresser, I tuned to a radio show where a woman called in on a rather scratchy cell phone to say that she was a teacher taking her students into Gettysburg to see Charlotte’s Web, and could the DJ play something the kids could sing to?  His voice warm, he said, “Of course!”  Within seconds, the first notes of Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer were sounding through my car.  The thought of a whole busload of little kids happily singing along put another smile on my Xmas_rudolph face.

3) After I left the hair salon, looking as spiffy as I’m capable of <g>, I had a holiday lunch with a friend.  Most of the restaurants around were jam packed with people doing the same, and offices having holiday parties, so we ended up in a new little Italian restaurant I’d never seen before.  Good food, good company, a good time.

I could go on—lots more than three good things happened today.  (Along with a few not so good, but we won’t go there. <g>)  But thinking of the good stuff makes me feel lighter and happier.

What are your good things for the day

Xmas cat  So that’s your assignment for the holiday.  Think of three good things every day.  Maybe more.  Perhaps that will lift your mood, relieve some stress, and make the holidays—and regular days—easier and more enjoyable. 

And yes, you can count a perfect piece of chocolate as A Very Good Thing!  What good things have happened to you that you'd like to share?

Mary Jo

 

110 thoughts on “Three Good Things Revisited”

  1. Mary Jo what a great post and I totally agree although I love Christmas time it can be very stressfull LOL. I am pretty much organized I just need to wrap the presents.
    Today I was given a couple of gifts from friends at work
    Two of my grandchildren were here to have dinner with us when I got home from work
    And I have a great book to read
    Have Fun
    Helen

    Reply
  2. Mary Jo what a great post and I totally agree although I love Christmas time it can be very stressfull LOL. I am pretty much organized I just need to wrap the presents.
    Today I was given a couple of gifts from friends at work
    Two of my grandchildren were here to have dinner with us when I got home from work
    And I have a great book to read
    Have Fun
    Helen

    Reply
  3. Mary Jo what a great post and I totally agree although I love Christmas time it can be very stressfull LOL. I am pretty much organized I just need to wrap the presents.
    Today I was given a couple of gifts from friends at work
    Two of my grandchildren were here to have dinner with us when I got home from work
    And I have a great book to read
    Have Fun
    Helen

    Reply
  4. Mary Jo what a great post and I totally agree although I love Christmas time it can be very stressfull LOL. I am pretty much organized I just need to wrap the presents.
    Today I was given a couple of gifts from friends at work
    Two of my grandchildren were here to have dinner with us when I got home from work
    And I have a great book to read
    Have Fun
    Helen

    Reply
  5. Mary Jo what a great post and I totally agree although I love Christmas time it can be very stressfull LOL. I am pretty much organized I just need to wrap the presents.
    Today I was given a couple of gifts from friends at work
    Two of my grandchildren were here to have dinner with us when I got home from work
    And I have a great book to read
    Have Fun
    Helen

    Reply
  6. Hello & Happy Holidays to all : )
    1) Yesterday evening, a very dear friend surprised me with a wonderful tin of assorted homemade cookies. We normally exchange gifts on Christmas Eve, and she asked did I mind if she brought part of her gift early. Mind? Silly girl! This is also the great and glorious friend who bakes me a ham for Christmas. Not just any ham, but a beautiful glazed ham with pineapple rings and cherries! Makes me do the “Ham Dance” every year–along with my cats!
    2) I was asked by three different website hosts to write Holiday recipe & remembrance blog posts this month. I was very honored, and it was such a joy to share my family stories and recipes and receive similar good things from the hosts and commenters. All of my immediate family is gone, and the holidays are somewhat bittersweet. If anyone would like the links, I will be glad to forward them.
    3) I found a box of old Christmas cards that we had received throughout the years. Some of the senders are no longer with us, and I was quite touched to read their words and see their signatures. I also enjoyed seeing the changing styles of cards from years gone by.

    Reply
  7. Hello & Happy Holidays to all : )
    1) Yesterday evening, a very dear friend surprised me with a wonderful tin of assorted homemade cookies. We normally exchange gifts on Christmas Eve, and she asked did I mind if she brought part of her gift early. Mind? Silly girl! This is also the great and glorious friend who bakes me a ham for Christmas. Not just any ham, but a beautiful glazed ham with pineapple rings and cherries! Makes me do the “Ham Dance” every year–along with my cats!
    2) I was asked by three different website hosts to write Holiday recipe & remembrance blog posts this month. I was very honored, and it was such a joy to share my family stories and recipes and receive similar good things from the hosts and commenters. All of my immediate family is gone, and the holidays are somewhat bittersweet. If anyone would like the links, I will be glad to forward them.
    3) I found a box of old Christmas cards that we had received throughout the years. Some of the senders are no longer with us, and I was quite touched to read their words and see their signatures. I also enjoyed seeing the changing styles of cards from years gone by.

    Reply
  8. Hello & Happy Holidays to all : )
    1) Yesterday evening, a very dear friend surprised me with a wonderful tin of assorted homemade cookies. We normally exchange gifts on Christmas Eve, and she asked did I mind if she brought part of her gift early. Mind? Silly girl! This is also the great and glorious friend who bakes me a ham for Christmas. Not just any ham, but a beautiful glazed ham with pineapple rings and cherries! Makes me do the “Ham Dance” every year–along with my cats!
    2) I was asked by three different website hosts to write Holiday recipe & remembrance blog posts this month. I was very honored, and it was such a joy to share my family stories and recipes and receive similar good things from the hosts and commenters. All of my immediate family is gone, and the holidays are somewhat bittersweet. If anyone would like the links, I will be glad to forward them.
    3) I found a box of old Christmas cards that we had received throughout the years. Some of the senders are no longer with us, and I was quite touched to read their words and see their signatures. I also enjoyed seeing the changing styles of cards from years gone by.

    Reply
  9. Hello & Happy Holidays to all : )
    1) Yesterday evening, a very dear friend surprised me with a wonderful tin of assorted homemade cookies. We normally exchange gifts on Christmas Eve, and she asked did I mind if she brought part of her gift early. Mind? Silly girl! This is also the great and glorious friend who bakes me a ham for Christmas. Not just any ham, but a beautiful glazed ham with pineapple rings and cherries! Makes me do the “Ham Dance” every year–along with my cats!
    2) I was asked by three different website hosts to write Holiday recipe & remembrance blog posts this month. I was very honored, and it was such a joy to share my family stories and recipes and receive similar good things from the hosts and commenters. All of my immediate family is gone, and the holidays are somewhat bittersweet. If anyone would like the links, I will be glad to forward them.
    3) I found a box of old Christmas cards that we had received throughout the years. Some of the senders are no longer with us, and I was quite touched to read their words and see their signatures. I also enjoyed seeing the changing styles of cards from years gone by.

    Reply
  10. Hello & Happy Holidays to all : )
    1) Yesterday evening, a very dear friend surprised me with a wonderful tin of assorted homemade cookies. We normally exchange gifts on Christmas Eve, and she asked did I mind if she brought part of her gift early. Mind? Silly girl! This is also the great and glorious friend who bakes me a ham for Christmas. Not just any ham, but a beautiful glazed ham with pineapple rings and cherries! Makes me do the “Ham Dance” every year–along with my cats!
    2) I was asked by three different website hosts to write Holiday recipe & remembrance blog posts this month. I was very honored, and it was such a joy to share my family stories and recipes and receive similar good things from the hosts and commenters. All of my immediate family is gone, and the holidays are somewhat bittersweet. If anyone would like the links, I will be glad to forward them.
    3) I found a box of old Christmas cards that we had received throughout the years. Some of the senders are no longer with us, and I was quite touched to read their words and see their signatures. I also enjoyed seeing the changing styles of cards from years gone by.

    Reply
  11. Well, today I read a post at the Word Wenches that may be old, but is new to me. I like finding books, movies, TV shows, created before I knew who these artists were. Although these works may be older, they’re new to me, and that’s all I care about. Merry Christmas.

    Reply
  12. Well, today I read a post at the Word Wenches that may be old, but is new to me. I like finding books, movies, TV shows, created before I knew who these artists were. Although these works may be older, they’re new to me, and that’s all I care about. Merry Christmas.

    Reply
  13. Well, today I read a post at the Word Wenches that may be old, but is new to me. I like finding books, movies, TV shows, created before I knew who these artists were. Although these works may be older, they’re new to me, and that’s all I care about. Merry Christmas.

    Reply
  14. Well, today I read a post at the Word Wenches that may be old, but is new to me. I like finding books, movies, TV shows, created before I knew who these artists were. Although these works may be older, they’re new to me, and that’s all I care about. Merry Christmas.

    Reply
  15. Well, today I read a post at the Word Wenches that may be old, but is new to me. I like finding books, movies, TV shows, created before I knew who these artists were. Although these works may be older, they’re new to me, and that’s all I care about. Merry Christmas.

    Reply
  16. Thank you, Mary Jo!
    Here are the three links–each one has different recipes & stories:
    Please join me at author Renee Vincent’s blog, “Past the Print”, for the December 2010 Holiday edition of “A Taste For Romance”. Good food, good friends and good memories.
    http://pasttheprint.blogspot.com/2010/12/taste-for-romance-by-virginia-campbell.html
    I also hope that you will come along and join us for even more recipes and holiday spirit on December 17th at author Lila DiPasqua’s blog, “A Writer’s Salon”. New recipes, more fun and good friends old & new:
    http://liladipasqua.blogspot.com/2010/12/oh-what-treat.html
    Last, but not least, check out Borders “TrueRomance” blog with Sue Grimshaw on December 22nd. Lots of nibbles, maybe a little naughtiness, and everyone is so nice:
    http://bordersblog.com/trueromance/2010/12/22/virginia-campbells-yummy-holiday-recipes/
    I wish you the happiest of holidays & a great and glorious new year!

    Reply
  17. Thank you, Mary Jo!
    Here are the three links–each one has different recipes & stories:
    Please join me at author Renee Vincent’s blog, “Past the Print”, for the December 2010 Holiday edition of “A Taste For Romance”. Good food, good friends and good memories.
    http://pasttheprint.blogspot.com/2010/12/taste-for-romance-by-virginia-campbell.html
    I also hope that you will come along and join us for even more recipes and holiday spirit on December 17th at author Lila DiPasqua’s blog, “A Writer’s Salon”. New recipes, more fun and good friends old & new:
    http://liladipasqua.blogspot.com/2010/12/oh-what-treat.html
    Last, but not least, check out Borders “TrueRomance” blog with Sue Grimshaw on December 22nd. Lots of nibbles, maybe a little naughtiness, and everyone is so nice:
    http://bordersblog.com/trueromance/2010/12/22/virginia-campbells-yummy-holiday-recipes/
    I wish you the happiest of holidays & a great and glorious new year!

    Reply
  18. Thank you, Mary Jo!
    Here are the three links–each one has different recipes & stories:
    Please join me at author Renee Vincent’s blog, “Past the Print”, for the December 2010 Holiday edition of “A Taste For Romance”. Good food, good friends and good memories.
    http://pasttheprint.blogspot.com/2010/12/taste-for-romance-by-virginia-campbell.html
    I also hope that you will come along and join us for even more recipes and holiday spirit on December 17th at author Lila DiPasqua’s blog, “A Writer’s Salon”. New recipes, more fun and good friends old & new:
    http://liladipasqua.blogspot.com/2010/12/oh-what-treat.html
    Last, but not least, check out Borders “TrueRomance” blog with Sue Grimshaw on December 22nd. Lots of nibbles, maybe a little naughtiness, and everyone is so nice:
    http://bordersblog.com/trueromance/2010/12/22/virginia-campbells-yummy-holiday-recipes/
    I wish you the happiest of holidays & a great and glorious new year!

    Reply
  19. Thank you, Mary Jo!
    Here are the three links–each one has different recipes & stories:
    Please join me at author Renee Vincent’s blog, “Past the Print”, for the December 2010 Holiday edition of “A Taste For Romance”. Good food, good friends and good memories.
    http://pasttheprint.blogspot.com/2010/12/taste-for-romance-by-virginia-campbell.html
    I also hope that you will come along and join us for even more recipes and holiday spirit on December 17th at author Lila DiPasqua’s blog, “A Writer’s Salon”. New recipes, more fun and good friends old & new:
    http://liladipasqua.blogspot.com/2010/12/oh-what-treat.html
    Last, but not least, check out Borders “TrueRomance” blog with Sue Grimshaw on December 22nd. Lots of nibbles, maybe a little naughtiness, and everyone is so nice:
    http://bordersblog.com/trueromance/2010/12/22/virginia-campbells-yummy-holiday-recipes/
    I wish you the happiest of holidays & a great and glorious new year!

    Reply
  20. Thank you, Mary Jo!
    Here are the three links–each one has different recipes & stories:
    Please join me at author Renee Vincent’s blog, “Past the Print”, for the December 2010 Holiday edition of “A Taste For Romance”. Good food, good friends and good memories.
    http://pasttheprint.blogspot.com/2010/12/taste-for-romance-by-virginia-campbell.html
    I also hope that you will come along and join us for even more recipes and holiday spirit on December 17th at author Lila DiPasqua’s blog, “A Writer’s Salon”. New recipes, more fun and good friends old & new:
    http://liladipasqua.blogspot.com/2010/12/oh-what-treat.html
    Last, but not least, check out Borders “TrueRomance” blog with Sue Grimshaw on December 22nd. Lots of nibbles, maybe a little naughtiness, and everyone is so nice:
    http://bordersblog.com/trueromance/2010/12/22/virginia-campbells-yummy-holiday-recipes/
    I wish you the happiest of holidays & a great and glorious new year!

    Reply
  21. Enjoying an old holiday special or movie that reminds me of my childhood (& that special magic of childhood Christmas’) can often help ease the stress and bring back the spirit of the season. One of my favorite year round stress reducers is kisses, cuddles, snuggles & loves from my puppy girl. Always brings a smile and lighter spirits.
    Happy Holidays!

    Reply
  22. Enjoying an old holiday special or movie that reminds me of my childhood (& that special magic of childhood Christmas’) can often help ease the stress and bring back the spirit of the season. One of my favorite year round stress reducers is kisses, cuddles, snuggles & loves from my puppy girl. Always brings a smile and lighter spirits.
    Happy Holidays!

    Reply
  23. Enjoying an old holiday special or movie that reminds me of my childhood (& that special magic of childhood Christmas’) can often help ease the stress and bring back the spirit of the season. One of my favorite year round stress reducers is kisses, cuddles, snuggles & loves from my puppy girl. Always brings a smile and lighter spirits.
    Happy Holidays!

    Reply
  24. Enjoying an old holiday special or movie that reminds me of my childhood (& that special magic of childhood Christmas’) can often help ease the stress and bring back the spirit of the season. One of my favorite year round stress reducers is kisses, cuddles, snuggles & loves from my puppy girl. Always brings a smile and lighter spirits.
    Happy Holidays!

    Reply
  25. Enjoying an old holiday special or movie that reminds me of my childhood (& that special magic of childhood Christmas’) can often help ease the stress and bring back the spirit of the season. One of my favorite year round stress reducers is kisses, cuddles, snuggles & loves from my puppy girl. Always brings a smile and lighter spirits.
    Happy Holidays!

    Reply
  26. I agree that we need to especially remember to count our blessings during the holiday season. We all try to have the “perfect” holiday and drive ourselves and the family crazy!
    I am happy to have a job, a home, and wonderful friends and family to celebrate christmas with…and eggnog!

    Reply
  27. I agree that we need to especially remember to count our blessings during the holiday season. We all try to have the “perfect” holiday and drive ourselves and the family crazy!
    I am happy to have a job, a home, and wonderful friends and family to celebrate christmas with…and eggnog!

    Reply
  28. I agree that we need to especially remember to count our blessings during the holiday season. We all try to have the “perfect” holiday and drive ourselves and the family crazy!
    I am happy to have a job, a home, and wonderful friends and family to celebrate christmas with…and eggnog!

    Reply
  29. I agree that we need to especially remember to count our blessings during the holiday season. We all try to have the “perfect” holiday and drive ourselves and the family crazy!
    I am happy to have a job, a home, and wonderful friends and family to celebrate christmas with…and eggnog!

    Reply
  30. I agree that we need to especially remember to count our blessings during the holiday season. We all try to have the “perfect” holiday and drive ourselves and the family crazy!
    I am happy to have a job, a home, and wonderful friends and family to celebrate christmas with…and eggnog!

    Reply
  31. Donna Ann–
    Pet cuddles are always great stress reducers! And Amy Kathryn–Egg nog doesn’ hurt, either! There is much to appreciate at this season, if we can remember not to drive ourselves crazy by overdoing!

    Reply
  32. Donna Ann–
    Pet cuddles are always great stress reducers! And Amy Kathryn–Egg nog doesn’ hurt, either! There is much to appreciate at this season, if we can remember not to drive ourselves crazy by overdoing!

    Reply
  33. Donna Ann–
    Pet cuddles are always great stress reducers! And Amy Kathryn–Egg nog doesn’ hurt, either! There is much to appreciate at this season, if we can remember not to drive ourselves crazy by overdoing!

    Reply
  34. Donna Ann–
    Pet cuddles are always great stress reducers! And Amy Kathryn–Egg nog doesn’ hurt, either! There is much to appreciate at this season, if we can remember not to drive ourselves crazy by overdoing!

    Reply
  35. Donna Ann–
    Pet cuddles are always great stress reducers! And Amy Kathryn–Egg nog doesn’ hurt, either! There is much to appreciate at this season, if we can remember not to drive ourselves crazy by overdoing!

    Reply
  36. Bright spot of the day: I was able to dig out another corner of the house.
    We have been renovating and adding on to an 1898 farm house. We have been working on it for many years and have just let boxes pile up as we move things around to work on rooms. I finally got to start sorting things from our storeroom, but all that did was make a bigger mess. (We have my aunt’s and my mother-in-law’s entire households here. Add to that a friend moved and half of her stuff ended up in our house too.) I have been trying to sort things and move things out of the way. Today I found the corner of the breakfast nook and managed to clean off and move a couple of pieces of furniture. Now we can get in to hang pictures which gets more stuff out of the piles. Of course most of what I moved is now in the kitchen, but I’ve been able to put a bunch of it away. We have way too much stuff. We have brought about a dozen loads of household items to a transitional housing charity, but there is much more that will eventually go.
    I have just learned to lower expectations. There will be no perfectly decorated house this year. Thanksgiving we couldn’t serve dinner here, so we cooked it and took it to my daughter’s house, then brought everything home for cleanup. She couldn’t cook it there because they are remodeling and had no kitchen or running water. (They parked their camper outside their back door and used it’s bathroom. Our other daughter who is pregnant wasn’t crazy about that setup.) They did have a nice big empty room. They borrowed folding tables and chairs from church and I sent over tablecloths, dishes and decorations. It actually worked out rather well and was fun. It will be a holiday everyone remembers.
    After 24 years as a military wife, I learned to just go with the flow and be flexible. Make the best of what you have and don’t sweat the small stuff. It usually isn’t that important anyway.

    Reply
  37. Bright spot of the day: I was able to dig out another corner of the house.
    We have been renovating and adding on to an 1898 farm house. We have been working on it for many years and have just let boxes pile up as we move things around to work on rooms. I finally got to start sorting things from our storeroom, but all that did was make a bigger mess. (We have my aunt’s and my mother-in-law’s entire households here. Add to that a friend moved and half of her stuff ended up in our house too.) I have been trying to sort things and move things out of the way. Today I found the corner of the breakfast nook and managed to clean off and move a couple of pieces of furniture. Now we can get in to hang pictures which gets more stuff out of the piles. Of course most of what I moved is now in the kitchen, but I’ve been able to put a bunch of it away. We have way too much stuff. We have brought about a dozen loads of household items to a transitional housing charity, but there is much more that will eventually go.
    I have just learned to lower expectations. There will be no perfectly decorated house this year. Thanksgiving we couldn’t serve dinner here, so we cooked it and took it to my daughter’s house, then brought everything home for cleanup. She couldn’t cook it there because they are remodeling and had no kitchen or running water. (They parked their camper outside their back door and used it’s bathroom. Our other daughter who is pregnant wasn’t crazy about that setup.) They did have a nice big empty room. They borrowed folding tables and chairs from church and I sent over tablecloths, dishes and decorations. It actually worked out rather well and was fun. It will be a holiday everyone remembers.
    After 24 years as a military wife, I learned to just go with the flow and be flexible. Make the best of what you have and don’t sweat the small stuff. It usually isn’t that important anyway.

    Reply
  38. Bright spot of the day: I was able to dig out another corner of the house.
    We have been renovating and adding on to an 1898 farm house. We have been working on it for many years and have just let boxes pile up as we move things around to work on rooms. I finally got to start sorting things from our storeroom, but all that did was make a bigger mess. (We have my aunt’s and my mother-in-law’s entire households here. Add to that a friend moved and half of her stuff ended up in our house too.) I have been trying to sort things and move things out of the way. Today I found the corner of the breakfast nook and managed to clean off and move a couple of pieces of furniture. Now we can get in to hang pictures which gets more stuff out of the piles. Of course most of what I moved is now in the kitchen, but I’ve been able to put a bunch of it away. We have way too much stuff. We have brought about a dozen loads of household items to a transitional housing charity, but there is much more that will eventually go.
    I have just learned to lower expectations. There will be no perfectly decorated house this year. Thanksgiving we couldn’t serve dinner here, so we cooked it and took it to my daughter’s house, then brought everything home for cleanup. She couldn’t cook it there because they are remodeling and had no kitchen or running water. (They parked their camper outside their back door and used it’s bathroom. Our other daughter who is pregnant wasn’t crazy about that setup.) They did have a nice big empty room. They borrowed folding tables and chairs from church and I sent over tablecloths, dishes and decorations. It actually worked out rather well and was fun. It will be a holiday everyone remembers.
    After 24 years as a military wife, I learned to just go with the flow and be flexible. Make the best of what you have and don’t sweat the small stuff. It usually isn’t that important anyway.

    Reply
  39. Bright spot of the day: I was able to dig out another corner of the house.
    We have been renovating and adding on to an 1898 farm house. We have been working on it for many years and have just let boxes pile up as we move things around to work on rooms. I finally got to start sorting things from our storeroom, but all that did was make a bigger mess. (We have my aunt’s and my mother-in-law’s entire households here. Add to that a friend moved and half of her stuff ended up in our house too.) I have been trying to sort things and move things out of the way. Today I found the corner of the breakfast nook and managed to clean off and move a couple of pieces of furniture. Now we can get in to hang pictures which gets more stuff out of the piles. Of course most of what I moved is now in the kitchen, but I’ve been able to put a bunch of it away. We have way too much stuff. We have brought about a dozen loads of household items to a transitional housing charity, but there is much more that will eventually go.
    I have just learned to lower expectations. There will be no perfectly decorated house this year. Thanksgiving we couldn’t serve dinner here, so we cooked it and took it to my daughter’s house, then brought everything home for cleanup. She couldn’t cook it there because they are remodeling and had no kitchen or running water. (They parked their camper outside their back door and used it’s bathroom. Our other daughter who is pregnant wasn’t crazy about that setup.) They did have a nice big empty room. They borrowed folding tables and chairs from church and I sent over tablecloths, dishes and decorations. It actually worked out rather well and was fun. It will be a holiday everyone remembers.
    After 24 years as a military wife, I learned to just go with the flow and be flexible. Make the best of what you have and don’t sweat the small stuff. It usually isn’t that important anyway.

    Reply
  40. Bright spot of the day: I was able to dig out another corner of the house.
    We have been renovating and adding on to an 1898 farm house. We have been working on it for many years and have just let boxes pile up as we move things around to work on rooms. I finally got to start sorting things from our storeroom, but all that did was make a bigger mess. (We have my aunt’s and my mother-in-law’s entire households here. Add to that a friend moved and half of her stuff ended up in our house too.) I have been trying to sort things and move things out of the way. Today I found the corner of the breakfast nook and managed to clean off and move a couple of pieces of furniture. Now we can get in to hang pictures which gets more stuff out of the piles. Of course most of what I moved is now in the kitchen, but I’ve been able to put a bunch of it away. We have way too much stuff. We have brought about a dozen loads of household items to a transitional housing charity, but there is much more that will eventually go.
    I have just learned to lower expectations. There will be no perfectly decorated house this year. Thanksgiving we couldn’t serve dinner here, so we cooked it and took it to my daughter’s house, then brought everything home for cleanup. She couldn’t cook it there because they are remodeling and had no kitchen or running water. (They parked their camper outside their back door and used it’s bathroom. Our other daughter who is pregnant wasn’t crazy about that setup.) They did have a nice big empty room. They borrowed folding tables and chairs from church and I sent over tablecloths, dishes and decorations. It actually worked out rather well and was fun. It will be a holiday everyone remembers.
    After 24 years as a military wife, I learned to just go with the flow and be flexible. Make the best of what you have and don’t sweat the small stuff. It usually isn’t that important anyway.

    Reply
  41. There are a lot of positive things happening at this time of year and it’s a great idea to focus on them. One thing is that my son came home from college and will be with us for a month. It was his first semester away so I definitely missed him. Another thing is that snow is not predicted until the day after Christmas now which, for me, is lucky since we are driving an hour and a half each way to my sister’s house on Christmas. Lastly, my son put his ornaments on the tree without me bugging him repeatedly which was a nice surprise.

    Reply
  42. There are a lot of positive things happening at this time of year and it’s a great idea to focus on them. One thing is that my son came home from college and will be with us for a month. It was his first semester away so I definitely missed him. Another thing is that snow is not predicted until the day after Christmas now which, for me, is lucky since we are driving an hour and a half each way to my sister’s house on Christmas. Lastly, my son put his ornaments on the tree without me bugging him repeatedly which was a nice surprise.

    Reply
  43. There are a lot of positive things happening at this time of year and it’s a great idea to focus on them. One thing is that my son came home from college and will be with us for a month. It was his first semester away so I definitely missed him. Another thing is that snow is not predicted until the day after Christmas now which, for me, is lucky since we are driving an hour and a half each way to my sister’s house on Christmas. Lastly, my son put his ornaments on the tree without me bugging him repeatedly which was a nice surprise.

    Reply
  44. There are a lot of positive things happening at this time of year and it’s a great idea to focus on them. One thing is that my son came home from college and will be with us for a month. It was his first semester away so I definitely missed him. Another thing is that snow is not predicted until the day after Christmas now which, for me, is lucky since we are driving an hour and a half each way to my sister’s house on Christmas. Lastly, my son put his ornaments on the tree without me bugging him repeatedly which was a nice surprise.

    Reply
  45. There are a lot of positive things happening at this time of year and it’s a great idea to focus on them. One thing is that my son came home from college and will be with us for a month. It was his first semester away so I definitely missed him. Another thing is that snow is not predicted until the day after Christmas now which, for me, is lucky since we are driving an hour and a half each way to my sister’s house on Christmas. Lastly, my son put his ornaments on the tree without me bugging him repeatedly which was a nice surprise.

    Reply
  46. Mary Jo, your post brought a smile to my face. Because of several personal losses over the past year, I’ve been finding it hard to find the “Christmas Spirit,” but you’ve helped immeasurably.
    Three things I’m grateful for: spending Christmas with my husband, kids, and especially my mother, whose health has been uncertain lately. A contract for my second novel, and the joy writing brings me. And Irish music. I suspect I’ll be given at least one new Irish CD for Christmas, and for me, no music can bring more enjoyment or relaxation.
    Happy holidays to your and yours, and all the best for 2011!

    Reply
  47. Mary Jo, your post brought a smile to my face. Because of several personal losses over the past year, I’ve been finding it hard to find the “Christmas Spirit,” but you’ve helped immeasurably.
    Three things I’m grateful for: spending Christmas with my husband, kids, and especially my mother, whose health has been uncertain lately. A contract for my second novel, and the joy writing brings me. And Irish music. I suspect I’ll be given at least one new Irish CD for Christmas, and for me, no music can bring more enjoyment or relaxation.
    Happy holidays to your and yours, and all the best for 2011!

    Reply
  48. Mary Jo, your post brought a smile to my face. Because of several personal losses over the past year, I’ve been finding it hard to find the “Christmas Spirit,” but you’ve helped immeasurably.
    Three things I’m grateful for: spending Christmas with my husband, kids, and especially my mother, whose health has been uncertain lately. A contract for my second novel, and the joy writing brings me. And Irish music. I suspect I’ll be given at least one new Irish CD for Christmas, and for me, no music can bring more enjoyment or relaxation.
    Happy holidays to your and yours, and all the best for 2011!

    Reply
  49. Mary Jo, your post brought a smile to my face. Because of several personal losses over the past year, I’ve been finding it hard to find the “Christmas Spirit,” but you’ve helped immeasurably.
    Three things I’m grateful for: spending Christmas with my husband, kids, and especially my mother, whose health has been uncertain lately. A contract for my second novel, and the joy writing brings me. And Irish music. I suspect I’ll be given at least one new Irish CD for Christmas, and for me, no music can bring more enjoyment or relaxation.
    Happy holidays to your and yours, and all the best for 2011!

    Reply
  50. Mary Jo, your post brought a smile to my face. Because of several personal losses over the past year, I’ve been finding it hard to find the “Christmas Spirit,” but you’ve helped immeasurably.
    Three things I’m grateful for: spending Christmas with my husband, kids, and especially my mother, whose health has been uncertain lately. A contract for my second novel, and the joy writing brings me. And Irish music. I suspect I’ll be given at least one new Irish CD for Christmas, and for me, no music can bring more enjoyment or relaxation.
    Happy holidays to your and yours, and all the best for 2011!

    Reply
  51. It is Christmas Eve here in Australia a great thought LOL
    To Everyone have a great Chrissy filled with lots of love and fun
    Have Fun
    Helen

    Reply
  52. It is Christmas Eve here in Australia a great thought LOL
    To Everyone have a great Chrissy filled with lots of love and fun
    Have Fun
    Helen

    Reply
  53. It is Christmas Eve here in Australia a great thought LOL
    To Everyone have a great Chrissy filled with lots of love and fun
    Have Fun
    Helen

    Reply
  54. It is Christmas Eve here in Australia a great thought LOL
    To Everyone have a great Chrissy filled with lots of love and fun
    Have Fun
    Helen

    Reply
  55. It is Christmas Eve here in Australia a great thought LOL
    To Everyone have a great Chrissy filled with lots of love and fun
    Have Fun
    Helen

    Reply
  56. LibraryPat, you do indeed have WAY too much Stuff to process and clear out! Do the charities make house calls? *G* It’s very fortunate that you have the ingenuity and flexibility that are such wonderful traits in military families. Good luck with the clearing out, and Merry Christmas!

    Reply
  57. LibraryPat, you do indeed have WAY too much Stuff to process and clear out! Do the charities make house calls? *G* It’s very fortunate that you have the ingenuity and flexibility that are such wonderful traits in military families. Good luck with the clearing out, and Merry Christmas!

    Reply
  58. LibraryPat, you do indeed have WAY too much Stuff to process and clear out! Do the charities make house calls? *G* It’s very fortunate that you have the ingenuity and flexibility that are such wonderful traits in military families. Good luck with the clearing out, and Merry Christmas!

    Reply
  59. LibraryPat, you do indeed have WAY too much Stuff to process and clear out! Do the charities make house calls? *G* It’s very fortunate that you have the ingenuity and flexibility that are such wonderful traits in military families. Good luck with the clearing out, and Merry Christmas!

    Reply
  60. LibraryPat, you do indeed have WAY too much Stuff to process and clear out! Do the charities make house calls? *G* It’s very fortunate that you have the ingenuity and flexibility that are such wonderful traits in military families. Good luck with the clearing out, and Merry Christmas!

    Reply
  61. Cynthia, I’m sorry for your losses, but glad that the blog brought a little Christmas cheer. Having your family, Irish music, and a new contract are ALL good things worth celebrating!

    Reply
  62. Cynthia, I’m sorry for your losses, but glad that the blog brought a little Christmas cheer. Having your family, Irish music, and a new contract are ALL good things worth celebrating!

    Reply
  63. Cynthia, I’m sorry for your losses, but glad that the blog brought a little Christmas cheer. Having your family, Irish music, and a new contract are ALL good things worth celebrating!

    Reply
  64. Cynthia, I’m sorry for your losses, but glad that the blog brought a little Christmas cheer. Having your family, Irish music, and a new contract are ALL good things worth celebrating!

    Reply
  65. Cynthia, I’m sorry for your losses, but glad that the blog brought a little Christmas cheer. Having your family, Irish music, and a new contract are ALL good things worth celebrating!

    Reply
  66. Helen, I hope you’re enjoying your Christmas Eve as I plan to enjoy mine! With have icy winds and possible snow. I imagine you have sunshine and lorikeets. It’s all good. *g* Happy Chrissy to you, too!

    Reply
  67. Helen, I hope you’re enjoying your Christmas Eve as I plan to enjoy mine! With have icy winds and possible snow. I imagine you have sunshine and lorikeets. It’s all good. *g* Happy Chrissy to you, too!

    Reply
  68. Helen, I hope you’re enjoying your Christmas Eve as I plan to enjoy mine! With have icy winds and possible snow. I imagine you have sunshine and lorikeets. It’s all good. *g* Happy Chrissy to you, too!

    Reply
  69. Helen, I hope you’re enjoying your Christmas Eve as I plan to enjoy mine! With have icy winds and possible snow. I imagine you have sunshine and lorikeets. It’s all good. *g* Happy Chrissy to you, too!

    Reply
  70. Helen, I hope you’re enjoying your Christmas Eve as I plan to enjoy mine! With have icy winds and possible snow. I imagine you have sunshine and lorikeets. It’s all good. *g* Happy Chrissy to you, too!

    Reply
  71. I am happy to have a job – not a great job, but a job that pays the bills!
    I am happy to have an agent who is enthusiastic about my writing!
    I am happy to be able to spend Christmas Day with my family!
    And as a bonus I am happy to have blogs like the Word Wenches to visit and brighten my day!

    Reply
  72. I am happy to have a job – not a great job, but a job that pays the bills!
    I am happy to have an agent who is enthusiastic about my writing!
    I am happy to be able to spend Christmas Day with my family!
    And as a bonus I am happy to have blogs like the Word Wenches to visit and brighten my day!

    Reply
  73. I am happy to have a job – not a great job, but a job that pays the bills!
    I am happy to have an agent who is enthusiastic about my writing!
    I am happy to be able to spend Christmas Day with my family!
    And as a bonus I am happy to have blogs like the Word Wenches to visit and brighten my day!

    Reply
  74. I am happy to have a job – not a great job, but a job that pays the bills!
    I am happy to have an agent who is enthusiastic about my writing!
    I am happy to be able to spend Christmas Day with my family!
    And as a bonus I am happy to have blogs like the Word Wenches to visit and brighten my day!

    Reply
  75. I am happy to have a job – not a great job, but a job that pays the bills!
    I am happy to have an agent who is enthusiastic about my writing!
    I am happy to be able to spend Christmas Day with my family!
    And as a bonus I am happy to have blogs like the Word Wenches to visit and brighten my day!

    Reply
  76. These are beautiful thoughts. My last week at work was really stressful, so I’m now enjoying catching up with my favorite blogs and spending time writing and hanging out with family.
    There you go – three good things!

    Reply
  77. These are beautiful thoughts. My last week at work was really stressful, so I’m now enjoying catching up with my favorite blogs and spending time writing and hanging out with family.
    There you go – three good things!

    Reply
  78. These are beautiful thoughts. My last week at work was really stressful, so I’m now enjoying catching up with my favorite blogs and spending time writing and hanging out with family.
    There you go – three good things!

    Reply
  79. These are beautiful thoughts. My last week at work was really stressful, so I’m now enjoying catching up with my favorite blogs and spending time writing and hanging out with family.
    There you go – three good things!

    Reply
  80. These are beautiful thoughts. My last week at work was really stressful, so I’m now enjoying catching up with my favorite blogs and spending time writing and hanging out with family.
    There you go – three good things!

    Reply

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