1. Vacation! I may not be traveling, but it will be nice to spend the next seven days with my nose in a book...maybe books is more accurate!
2. The ease and peace of the morning. I got up and swirled around the kitchen warming up my breakfast and making a cup of coffee while picking up the kitchen a bit...all while the tv played the soothing sounds of the Music choice soundscapes channel.
3. Getting to watch the cats sleep. After running themselves sleepy they have curled up and are zonked out!!!!
4. The sweet potato chili that mom made last night. It was warm and definitely hit the spot for lunch.
5. My memories....I know that sounds like a rather random thing to be thankful for, but since I didn't have to go to work today, I went for a walk. We've lived in this apartment for a year and a half and had yet to take the walking trail that runs south of the complex. I decided I would today. The path winds around the greenbelt that lies between our complex and the elementary school and neighboring residential area. As I rounded the greenbelt I came up towards the back side of the school. The first thing I saw was the soccer field.
In that instant, before the smile could even spread across my face, with my left foot on the trail in Wisconsin, my 10 year old right foot kicked the soccer ball on the field where we used to play in Italy. I went to school on the army base where my dad was stationed. Across the street from the front of the school was the dental clinic where my mom volunteered. Across the street from the side of the school was a huge field between the school and the fence that separated the American grass from the Italian grass. It was where we played soccer for hours (it was also where the chinook helicopters landed to refuel as they carried care packages to Somalia that year). It wasn't recess, it wasn't lunch....it was the never ending time between the last bell and taps. Otherwise known as the roughly two hours between the end of the school day and the end of the work day. We weren't friends, not really. Truth be told the group of us that played soccer after school spent every moment in school fighting with each other. But we still played soccer together because it was Italy after all and what else we were going to do while we waited for our parents to get off of work?
Still in Wisconsin, my feet kept traveling the trail and as I walked past the soccer field I saw the monkey bars. In short order I was back across the Atlantic, but not back in Wisconsin. I was in El Paso, Texas, in middle school, playing on the monkey bars with Corey and Sofi and our friends. The monkey bars were on the lower football field...with the grass they could never keep green and lush in the desert. We spent most of our free time there, not because we really played on the monkey bars, but because it was in the shade of the school building...and shade was a rare commodity in the desert.
With the hardships and obstacles that life has placed in front of me, I'm thankful that on a crisp, sunny day, I can take a walk down memory lane and smile!