thankful :: week 4

thankful :: This photo is seven months old or so, but these things never get old around our house, and I'm SO head over heels grateful for this girl, who is always making paper crowns and paper planes, wearing flowers around her neck, asking to help with things, looking for animals to love or things to create.

thankful :: I threw seeds in the garden today. Spinach, red subzhi (is it called amaranth in English?) three kinds of basil, red and green lettuce, chinese broccoli and bok choy. I'm thankful for that little bit of excitement that comes every morning from here on, when we wake up and go out to see what's growing.

thankful :: for M, who arrived, for Khalifah, my beautiful sister-by-marriage who is arriving on Wednesday (squeeee!) for a good Skype call with my parents, for beloveds near and far.

thankful :: for a long talk with the dearest friend I could ever hope for, last Sunday.

It's amazing, isn't it? I feel like I've had a rather hard week, but looking back, I can see so much beauty in it! It's scattered in the earth, coming up leafy and verdant.

(Oh, believe me, you will get no end of gardening metaphors from me now.)

I so love to hear what you're thankful for. Share away in the comments, with a link to your post or just a few things. Or many! Crowd the comment box!

thankful :: week 3

Today it is for love. I'm thankful that love is always the strongest thing.

Even the sadness of saying goodbye, of longing for people who are far away, is because of the strength of love-- it always pulls at us, making us new, changing us, making us different. Love softens the hardest, dullest day, gives it the scent of flowers.

I'm thankful for love, around me and in me.

Play along by telling us what you're thankful for in the comments, or linking to your own thankfulness post.

thankful :: week 2

Today, at the end of a challenging week, my gratefulness flows out of various simple, lovely things. I am thankful for this frangipani tree, in our meditation center garden, for the fruitfulness of a dream.

For the beauty of a clear day, for the cool mornings when I sit on the porch all alone.

For our friends, Mike and Caroline (we met them in Nepal) staying nearby and babysitting so I could have a date with Chinua, riding behind him on the scooter, getting lost in the dark together, laughing about it.

For the Mapusa market (hot and crowded though it can be) and how I have learned to navigate it. For the last seeds, the ones I bought there, the ones that I will plant soon.

For pomegranates.

For herons and egrets and the large eagle's nest in the tree at the beach. For a glimpse of the eagle that is perched there. For your beautiful earth, God. What a gift.

For baking, even on hot days. For the banana bread that Kid A made, all proud and responsible, taking charge from start to finish. For the shape of our family now, the way everyone is growing and changing.

For our relative health as we struggle along with the end of the staph attack (we pray the end) and with the mumps (of all things), and Chinua's fourth migraine in two months. Even as I try to keep our little family healthy, I see how they are. I see them thriving and dealing with these short illnesses, and I am so thankful for our health.

Join in, if you like, by linking to your post or simply writing your thanks in the comments below.

thankful :: week 1

We know, we know that thankfulness is good, that the habit of thankfulness is admirable, that we should be more thankful. But thankfulness is more than a should, it is also a pure means of connection with God, the connection between giving and receiving. It is a means to fight lethargy and pettiness, to acknowledge, to notice the breathtaking miracles of ordinary life.

I want to open a space for weekly gratitude here. I'm inspired by the many places around the web in which I see the fresh air of gratitude, and indeed I always have thankfulness scrawled in my journals, on tiny pieces of paper, on cards and in poems. But as this meditation center season is starting, as we get going with our year and things get busier, I want to have a way to recap, right here, the week and its moments and all its gifts.

In thinking about thankfulness, I always come back to this poem by e.e. cummings.

i thank You God for most this amazing
day:for the leaping greenly spirits of trees
and a blue true dream of sky; and for everything
which is natural which is infinite which is yes

(i who have died am alive again today,
and this is the sun's birthday; this is the birth
day of life and of love and wings: and of the gay
great happening illimitably earth)

how should tasting touching hearing seeing
breathing any--lifted from the no
of all nothing--human merely being
doubt unimaginable You?

(now the ears of my ears awake and
now the eyes of my eyes are opened)

Thankfulness wakes our ears and opens our eyes. So here, for this week, are mine:

I thank you God for the seven sunrises I saw this week, all of them different. For the ones that were fuzzy and gray, for the ones that were brilliant, scarlet.

For the garden and the blooming of flowers, for planting to look forward to. For the dream of fresh leaves, of salads, now hovering over the blank earth.

For mold eradicated, for more mold that will be scoured, for the furniture, for the walls. I thank you for our home, for cherished things brought out of boxes, for the little marks we make on the earth.

For the langur monkey I saw bounding across the road on incredible arms and legs.

I thank you for an old table turned into a new blue table, for Chinua who painted it, for kids who helped. For Jaya.

For the sea, for the sun. For the green that springs from everywhere at the end of the monsoon. For hundreds of baby coconut trees in the coconut grove. For Solo's morning cuddles, for YaYa, so happy to be back, for Kid A reading and reading, for Leafy finding new things to create. For Rani, who invited us for a bonfire, for Reece, who joined us for dinner.

For talks, for silence, for a good week, for the way you lead me away from the storm of my heart, and into peace.

(If you'd like to join in, leave a link to your post or just your thanks in the comments.)