10 Things I’m Grateful for this Thanksgiving Weekend

10 Things I'm Grateful for this Thanksgiving WeekendHave you ever experienced a time when you’re sitting on top of the world, feeling energized and enthused then, WHOMP!…something hits you like a kick in the belly and deflates that feeling as quickly as a pinprick to a balloon?

That happened to me this morning. As I was happily zipping around the blogosphere for a few minutes prior to getting all the Thanksgiving decorating and cooking started, something hit me like a ton of bricks. And it made me realize how tenuous our hold on exhilaration can be.

But it also made me realize that, as I’ll be writing about in the next few weeks: Life is Imbalanced, and it’s important to Embrace Imbalance. Revel in the highs: accept the lows. Feel the teeter-totter of life fully.

For a few minutes, I was on the low end of the teeter-totter. But thanks to being able to share, in confidence, with a friend; combined with my own resilience, I didn’t sit there. But the whole experience, like lemonade from lemons, prompted me to write this post:

10 Things I’m Grateful for this Thanksgiving Weekend

1. Friends who help me realize that sometimes, people you think have your back…don’t.  I’m grateful to those friends who are really there for me, especially when I need them most. You know who you are, and you are a gift.

2. The many friends, acquaintances and associates I’ve met online, who pop in and out of my field of vision and activity, but I know are really “always there”, regardless of frequency of contact.

3. My family. They are, of course, #1, but I put them here only because, this morning, it’s those friends outside my family who supported me, lifted me and helped me this morning. Overall and always, family comes first.

4. Clean, crisp air.

5. Pure, clear water.

6. Experience. Without all the ups and downs and in-betweens of life, I wouldn’t have been such a good student of life, and the only thing we can’t fast-track is experience. Knowledge is good, but experience breeds wisdom. I’d like to think I’m wiser for the experience. Not every moment (as evidenced by my mini-meltdown this morning), but that’s OK. I will be wise enough to move on.

7. The wisdom of others. There’s nothing finer than learning from those who have combined their knowledge with experience, to bring into our lives not just words…not just advice…but true, heartfelt wisdom.

8. Health – Mental, Physical, Emotional, Spiritual and Financial.

9. This world we live in. Despite it’s troubles and turmoil, I choose to see that the wabi sabi of it all is what makes it special. Nothing is perfect. This world is perfect in its imperfection.

10. You. Whoever is reading this, and whoever may be touched by this, I’m grateful that you’ve taken time to visit here. There’s much to be grateful for, and I’m grateful that, what could have been a lemon turned into lemonade today: it helped me write from the heart write from the heart


  • http://www.vidyasury.com/ Vidya Sury

    :-) That’s a beautiful list. I have often found it very interesting about the number of things we can be grateful for – and somehow, once we get into the swing, everything fits into that basket. My favorite exercise, when I get that whoosh in my solar plexus is to quickly take a sheet of paper, my favorite pen, set my timer to 5 minutes and list five things I am grateful for that very moment. I am always rewarded by jotting down at least ten things – and I am in a rush to feel grateful for as many things as possible in that five minutes – you know what I mean? Then my mind is full of only positive happy stuff. I literally psyche myself out of the low feeling.

    And then, there’s always the vacuum cleaner to help me out of my own vacuum! Good hard physical labor and music at a ridiculously high volume literally spook the blues out. Even if I listen to the blues sometimes. Healing with benefits 😀 – Exercise + Cleaner house.

    Hugs – Happy Thanksgiving Day. May I dare to think that you think of me of one of those friends who will always be around regardless of frequency of communication? And will simply jump right in when you need me? Love, Vidya

    • http://twitter.com/KDillabough Kaarina Dillabough

      There is nothing you need to “dare to think” @vidyasury:disqus : you are a true friend: one that is always around, regardless of frequency, always with a kind word of support and encouragement, and someone who gifts me with the kindest of words. May I dare think the same back? 😉 Love, Kaarina P.S. Your favourite exercise is a good one! One that we should all heed. Finding and expressing gratitude in the moment, especially the tough moments, is very healing:)

  • http://www.writerightwords.com/ Erin Feldman

    Thank you for the reminder to be grateful. I’ve been working hard to keep a grateful attitude lately.

    Thank you, too, for being a good friend. I’m thankful you’re in my life. We all need those friends who help us through the meltdowns and ugly middles.

    Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family! I hope you have a blessed weekend.

    • http://twitter.com/KDillabough Kaarina Dillabough

      Thanks so much @ErinFeldman:disqus :) It’s been my pleasure to watch your efforts blossom from the previous blog, to Write Right, to your wonderful drawings to the confidence and capability that you gain with each step. You gifted me by calling me your mentor: that, to me, is the highest praise, and something I treasure. Cheers! Kaarina

  • http://www.aha-now.com/ Harleena Singh

    Loved the list!

    I think every single day should be celebrated as Thanksgiving, as we need to give thanks for the smallest of things we have in life – isn’t it?

    Right from the moment we open our eyes in the morning till we close them, every second is what we need to be grateful for. It’s those small things that matter a great deal.

    Wishing you a very Happy Thanksgiving weekend – enjoy yourself. :)

    • http://twitter.com/KDillabough Kaarina Dillabough

      I couldn’t say it any better @Harleena:disqus : every day is, and should be, a thanksgiving. It’s sometimes easy to overlook the small miracles of everyday living, and give thanks. You’ve provided an excellent reminder. Cheers! Kaarina

  • Susan Brady

    An absolutely beautiful message Kaarina! Thank you for pouring your heart into your writing – it makes us all stand up and take notice. So grateful for YOU!

    Susan :)

    • http://twitter.com/KDillabough Kaarina Dillabough

      Thanks @susanbrady:disqus , for this comment, your friendship and support:) Love, Kaarina

  • http://twitter.com/BetsyKCross Betsy Cross

    i always feel so helpless when someone I know and really like gets blind-sided. But to see you turn it around to gratitud is powerful…’cause what’s the alternative?

    • http://twitter.com/KDillabough Kaarina Dillabough

      You’re so right @twitter-286790484:disqus about “what’s the alternative”. Because the alternative is to punish yourself twice; first by the blow you received and second by holding onto it. Release, forgiveness and gratitude…not always easy, especially when emotions run high, but the high road is always the right road. Cheers! Kaarina

  • http://joshuawilner.com/ Josh

    That is a mighty fine list and I am thankful to have met you and many others here in our online world.

    • http://twitter.com/KDillabough Kaarina Dillabough

      And I’m thankful for our friendship Josh, and the many fine friends I’ve met here online. Cheers! Kaarina

  • http://twitter.com/ExtremelyAvg Brian D. Meeks

    So, I reading along and I get to number four. Clean, crisp…air? I assumed that bacon would be the next word. It was hard to bounce back from such a letdown. Obviously, I read the rest of the list to find out where bacon would rank. Could you please add bacon as an addendum to the list?

    • http://twitter.com/KDillabough Kaarina Dillabough

      I’m LOL @twitter-103512565:disqus , and promptly adding bacon to the list: Canadian bacon of course! Or should I say, clean, crisp bacon? Thanks for chiming in and pointing out my obvious omission;) Cheers! Kaarina

  • http://barrettrossie.com/ Barrett Rossie

    I’m glad it’s Thanksgiving way up north, inspiring you to write this lovely post. But everyone knows this is Columbus Day weekend… Thanksgiving isn’t till November!

    I’m particularly thankful for #7, without which I wouldn’t have a chance. Thanks Kaarina!

    • http://twitter.com/KDillabough Kaarina Dillabough

      Hey, we do things differently up here in the Great White North @barrett_rossie:disqus . Speaking of which: there’s frost on the ground and snow expected slightly north of us. Canada eh?

      Happy Columbus Day…what do you do to celebrate that holiday? Today, I’ll be preparing a turkey dinner, continuing work on the deck with my boys (it’s becoming the never-ending-project) and giving thanks for my many blessings. Cheers! Kaarina

    • http://barrettrossie.com/ Barrett Rossie

      What do I do to celebrate Columbus Day? Park downtown for free because the meter readers have the day off! And eat Italian food, of course.

      • http://twitter.com/KDillabough Kaarina Dillabough


  • http://twitter.com/bdorman264 Bill Dorman

    Good list indeed; do I need to break out the Kung Fu grip on somebody?

    When’s Christmas? First wk in November?

    • http://twitter.com/KDillabough Kaarina Dillabough

      No need, but thanks @twitter-34985693:disqus : I appreciate you having my back:) And yes…how did you know? We start Christmas in November right thru to December, haha! Cheers! Kaarina

      • http://twitter.com/bdorman264 Bill Dorman

        BTW; one of my partners is married to a Canadian so they celebrated Thanksgiving yesterday………

        • http://twitter.com/KDillabough Kaarina Dillabough

          Smart people:)

  • http://twitter.com/rdopping Ralph Dopping

    Awesome list Kaarina.

    I am so glad you said that your first support system is family. They are indeed #1 in my world too.
    I am with @twitter-103512565:disqus on the bacon thing. It needs to be on the list of things to be thankful for. So does mashed turnip. I love that almost as much as bacon. 😉

    • http://twitter.com/KDillabough Kaarina Dillabough

      Consider bacon…and mashed turnip???? included!

  • http://www.late-bloomers.net Barbara Klein

    From lemons to lemonade – I love your list, especially that you put family first and #6 of experience breeding wisdom.

    I do not have a black belt but count on me! I am a very loyal person.

    Last night I had a nasty dream of a friend letting me down, such a horrible feeling, still lingering around when I woke up. I wished I could shake it off like Chica does when she comes out of the water!

    Happy Canadian Thanksgiving Day – you had my family confused but then we have a similar day in Switzerland at the end of September but it is not celebrated on a big scale (I think that is the official time when the public swimming pools close for winter).

    • http://twitter.com/KDillabough Kaarina Dillabough

      You do not need a black belt because I know your loyalty runs deep @BarbaraKlein:disqus :) I like that image of Chica: I think we should use it as a visual anytime something hurtful or disappointing happens…we’ll just shake it off, like Chica:)

      It’s a magnificent day today: cold crisp air for sure, but the sun is shining, the leaves are just about at their peak of colour, family is home. I’m about to start making my Finnish pancakes for brunch: something that will take about an hour, but a labour of love. Sending you warm wishes from this Canadian Thanksgiving. Cheers! Kaarina

      • http://www.late-bloomers.net Barbara Klein

        I knew Chica was meant to go down in history :)!

        Enjoy your lovely day and now you have me curious about your labour of love, the Finnish pancakes? What’s different in that recipe? But hopefully with Canadian maple syrup?

        • http://twitter.com/KDillabough Kaarina Dillabough

          Always with Canadian maple syrup:) The Finnish pancakes are best described as a moist crepe, quite paper thin, although my grandparents used to make them very fat and thick, in an old cast iron pan, the size of the pan. I never use a recipe; just mix to the consistency that feels right. The boys love them, and have now wolfed down the entire labour of love, haha! Cheers! Kaarina (can’t wait to see the result of the “red” buying trip;)

  • Tim Bonner

    Hi Kaarina

    My first time here and what an uplifting and positive post to land on!

    Family for me is everything. As a stay at home dad, #3 really resonates with me because that is my real job.

    • http://twitter.com/KDillabough Kaarina Dillabough

      So happy to see you here @timbonner:disqus . I hope you’ll drop by regularly: the welcome mat’s always out. And I look forward to getting to know you and your words/work, and our continued connection. Glad it was a happy landing:) Cheers! Kaarina

  • http://newenglandmultimedia.com/ Michelle Quillin

    I love Gratitude Posts! They get my focus back onto what’s important. Thank-you, Kaarina, for your positive influence in not only my life, but in your community online — and Happy Canadian Thanksgiving!

    • http://twitter.com/KDillabough Kaarina Dillabough

      Thanks so much @michellequillin:disqus :) Now what’s happening at 2:30 today? Cheers! Kaarina

      • http://newenglandmultimedia.com/ Michelle Quillin

        Podcast with Mr. Jon Buscall! I just emailed you, so check yer inbox, friend. Hoping our time has come.

        I’m writing a Gratitude Post. We have so much to be thankful for.

        • http://twitter.com/KDillabough Kaarina Dillabough

          Just emailed you back:) Our time has definitely come!

          Thanks so much for tweeting and asking others to write a Gratitude Post, linking back here. Much appreciated:) I hope others will take up the challenge too. Cheers! Kaarina

  • http://hajra.me/ Hajra

    A very nice list… reminds me of things I should be thankful for but have been overlooking for some time now…

    Happy Thanksgiving… already? 😉

    • http://twitter.com/KDillabough Kaarina Dillabough

      Well, with this little reminder, I trust they’ll be overlooked no more;) And yes…Thanksgiving in Canada…we do things early here:) Cheers! Kaarina

  • Adam

    What a great list Kaarina! It’s easy to get caught up in the day to day and forget to be grateful for what we have. I like #10 because it is not so obvious. I’m grateful for every reader, and I know you are. Happy Canadian Thanksgiving!

    PS. I would have made it by here sooner, but someone went and pulled a blogjack at my place today!

    • http://twitter.com/KDillabough Kaarina Dillabough

      Mwahahahahahaha;) It was my pleasure to be the ringleader of a good ol’ fashioned #TeamBlogJack over at your place yesterday. I’m indeed grateful for every reader and every person who takes the time to comment, and I believe that, whenever we can help each other to support and build “community”, it’s a good day. Cheers! Kaarina

  • http://markharai.com Mark Harai

    This is so true, Kaarina:

    “The many friends, acquaintances and associates I’ve met online, who pop
    in and out of my field of vision and activity, but I know are really
    “always there”, regardless of frequency of contact.”

    When I took my little hiatus, although my presence wasn’t seen by those in the community as much, I never missed a blog post or a tweet.

    I subscribe to the blogs I read via email RSS, so I saw the many faces I cherrish in my email box every week. I didn’t miss a thing!

    I plan on being connected to those folks I’ve connected with on the social web forever; or as long as they will have me : )

    That’s pretty cool if you think about too – life-long connections and friends across the globe!

    xoxox my friend!

    • http://twitter.com/KDillabough Kaarina Dillabough

      I like that @markharai:disqus : “I plan on being connected…forever.” Cheers to that! Kaarina xo

  • http://twitter.com/samanthaluy Samantha Bangayan

    I am learning so many life-changing exercises from you, Kaarina! I’ve definitely gone through the up-and-down you describe, but concretizing a gratitude list is one of the best ways I’ve heard to tackle the potential frustration! There is truly oh so much to be thankful for. I can relate to every single point in your list and I really appreciate the reminder of all the good there is!

    • http://twitter.com/KDillabough Kaarina Dillabough

      Thanks @twitter-250474377:disqus : perhaps you’ll take up the challenge to write your own Gratitude post:) Always great to see you. Cheers! Kaarina

  • Sharon Gilmour-Glover

    Kaarina, thanks for the beautiful post. Life would be dull without imbalance wouldn’t it? Gratitude is such a powerful resilience builder.


    • http://twitter.com/KDillabough Kaarina Dillabough

      Thanks @a0429977d6f1788c905681cdc7b454cd:disqus :) Imbalance is the spice of life, and gratitude’s a staple. Cheers! Kaarina

  • http://twitter.com/02809Photo 02809 Photography

    This is really a great posting and I read it as well as reflected on it. I saw it tweeted today again so I wanted to come back and share some thoughts and even expand on my own thankful posting soon. One major thing for me and it is kind of cliche but also expands into another thought, I’m thankful for photography. Photography has given me more than just a pretty picture but a tool to slow down and realize the world around me including people, places and things. I think without seeing the world through my lens I never really looked at a sunrise,, I never looked that deep into the smiles of my kids as I line them up for a shot or really saw the true joy of a newly married bride. I should say I saw these things but I see them so differently now that photography has been my major focus. I’m also very thankful for family and the small things taken for granted, my step-father was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer two years ago and he is still doing very well but you look at the joys of life differently and how you can be so wrapped up in the small things you miss the big picture. Thanks for this reminder ! It’s good to reflect what we’re thankful for.

    • http://twitter.com/KDillabough Kaarina Dillabough

      What a lovely comment. Although I’m just a “hack” hobby photographer, I too love crawling into the lens of the camera and seeing the most beautiful of things that, perhaps to others, are common place or taken for granted. I love the lines and forms, shapes and textures of things. I love truly “seeing”, and photography and painting have given me fresh eyes.

      Family is so important. I’m sorry to hear about your step-father, but am glad that he is doing well. Our perspective certainly changes when we are dealing with illness, injury or the passing of someone, so it’s important not to wait for those times to truly “see”. Cheers! Kaarina

      • http://twitter.com/02809Photo 02809 Photography

        Thank you :)

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