Day 23: A 6 year old with a message

A simple message by Tiago, 6 years old: “I am grateful for peace.” at The Maplewood Public Library

I agree with Tiago.  I am grateful for how peaceful our town has dealt with this disaster.  Peace is visible in all the stores in our village who miraculously did not lose power and continue to offer a cup of coffee and a place to charge our phones.  Peace is visible at our neighbors’ homes, helping each other with food, warmth and a place to sleep.  Peace is visible at the library where thousands of people have gathered throughout the last week to stay warm, re-charge and connect with each other.

What are you grateful for in your own neighborhood?

Day 22: A day at the beach

“I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times.” Bruce Lee

Last year, six of us were scheduled to go on a surfing trip to the Jersey Shore.   I got a call from the instructor minutes before leaving the house to let me know that the waves and the wind were too high and dangerous for us to try surfing.  Without hesitation everyone agreed that we would still drive down to the beach and make the best of this day.

We arrived and as predicted the wind was blowing hard and the red flag was flapping strongly on the mast to warn everyone to not get into the water.  All of us walked down to the beach, took in the majestic views of the waves and we simply stood there in awe.  We went with the flow throughout the day and found a small more protected beach.  We learned Tai chi and in the end we learned how to paddle board and “surf” without the waves.

I am certain that what made our day so memorable was everyone’s intention to make the best of it, to have fun, to enjoy, to learn, to be together, to just be.  To be present.  And while every day is not going to be “a day at the beach”, that “surf” day taught me to continuously nurture my intention in order to become more present.  Becoming more present can positively transform the way I feel  about my day and each small or large task that fills it.

Day 18: Post hurricane thoughts from my 10 year old…

We are so lucky.  We are safe and with power.  After a night hunkered down in the basement, my daughter knew I was tired and she also knew that I wanted to reach out so she came up with her own thoughts to share…

Okay, Hi everybody! Today is a little different on the Gratitude Graffiti Blog- Your author here is Anabella, daughter of Lucila, (co-founder of the project), and your average, everyday crazy girl.  So. Gratefulness. I am going to start off with what I am grateful for. First off- Power! After hearing 2.4 million other people lost power due to Superstorm Sandy (Including many of my friends) I felt EXTREMELY grateful for light and heat.

Second of all: A safe trampoline! Of course, like my younger sisters Coco and Amelie, I simply looooove my trampoline, and with the power of cinder blocks I can still love it! Now, that is what I am grateful for.

In the midst of a hurricane, or superstorm (whatever you want to call it) there are so many things to give thanks to.  Do you have a shelter to sleep in tonight? Access to the internet to read this on? Are you in that 1/5 of Maplewood that still has power? Think of those things, keep thinking, a little longer… I mean, even if you aren’t in the middle of a hurricane right now, be grateful you are not! Just stop and think.

Of course, today may not be a great day to go out and write on windows and share what you are grateful for that way, sharing gratefulness isn’t just that. You can express what you are grateful for in SO many ways in this modern world we (so luckily) live in. Go out and talk to that one person you haven’t hugged today!  Comment on this post! Just yell it out and tell the world that way! It will raise someone’s day- I 100 percent promise you.

Okay, now, I guess this article is about sharing your gratitude.. Well that worked out better than I thought! Now the closing- take my advice! Sharing your gratitude won’t just raise someone else’s day- It’ll raise yours too! You just made somebody truthfully happy! How’s about THAT! Now, I will end with simply….  Goodbye!

Preparing for the hurricane…

An expression of gratitude Shakti Yoga and Living Arts

As we prepare for hurricane Sandy here in NJ, I am reminded on all the little (and big) things I take for granted each day:

  • running water
  • clean water
  • toilets
  • heat
  • being able to cook and eat warm food
  • electricity
  • home phone
  • cell phone
  • internet
  • newspaper delivery
  • postal service
  • light when it’s dark out
  • good schools
  • ambulance, fire and police professionals
  • the leaves getting picked up

What little (or big) things are you grateful for today?