What Are You Thankful For?

 

With Thanksgiving 2013 just a day away, and coming off of the loss of one of our beloved kitties, we are working hard to focus on all that we have, because most all of us, likely you included, have lots to be thankful for.

Are you having a hard time being thankful this year?  Has the crappy side of life thrown you some tough stuff this year, and it’s been difficult for you to see the positive side of life?  I understand, as we’ve had our own fair share of crap to deal with this year.  So, for my own sake, and hoping it will bring joy to you as well, I’ve put together some stats about what people might have to be thankful for.  Hope you enjoy them.

I am thankful for:

1.  A warm place to sleep at night.  According to the National Law Center on Homelessness and Poverty, roughly 1, 750,000 Americans are homeless right now.  I am thankful today that every single day, we’ve got a warm place to live and sleep, and that living outside, whether tent camping or whatever, is a choice for my family and I, and not a stark reality.

2.  Plenty of food to eat.  From World Hunger:  ” The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization estimates that  nearly 870 million people of the 7.1 billion people in the world, or one in eight, were suffering  from chronic undernourishment in 2010-2012.  I am thankful that every single day we’ve got food to eat.  It may not be the fanciest food, but we never go without.

3.  Friends and family.  Years ago, I knew a guy who would often spend Christmas and Thanksgiving all alone.  Sometimes he’d go to a movie, but mostly he’d hang out by himself at his apartment.  He’d been raised in a broken home, mom and dad were both dead due to tragic circumstances, there was a much older half brother who he didn’t know very well, and the grandparents who’d raised him had passed on.  Being a great guy but a bit insecure (understandably), he wasn’t always the greatest at developing and maintaining close relationships, therefore he would often be forgotten on holidays, although there were years that people remembered and invited him.

This year, I am choosing to be thankful for all of the people in my life, whether or not they drive me up the wall. 🙂

4. Choices.  Living in America, we have lots and lots of choices.  The large majority of us can choose to earn money, or to not earn money, through the many, many opportunities here in America.  We can choose (for now, anyway) the religion of our choice, or choose no religion at all.  We can choose between more than two sets of clothing.  We can choose which pair of shoes to wear today.  We can choose, most of us, to go places or stay home.   We can choose between several different brands/types of whatever it is that we need or want to buy at the store.   We have enough opportunities and choices in this great nation that by and large we don’t have to be “under our circumstances” but instead, can choose to conquer them.

Know too that we in the Frugal Farmer family are very, very thankful for all of you.  Your faithfulness, encouragement and support of our site and our mission to live a debt-free, simplified life mean so very much to us, and help us to keep on going each and every day as we strive toward financial independence and a self-sufficient life.  Thank you, so much, for that, and have a happy, happy Thanksgiving.

What do you have to be thankful for?

32 comments

  1. Love your thoughts here Laurie! One of the choices we make each day is to be thankful instead of ungrateful. I’d much rather live a life with the frame of mind towards thankfulness. We’ve been blessed with so much. Happy Thanksgiving!

    • Great post Laurie. And Brian, I loved your comment that we can choose to be thankful rather than ungrateful for all that we have. Being thankful for all the things Laurie mentioned is a much better mindset than being ungrateful. The statistics you mentioned about the number of homeless people and those who are going hungry really puts things into perspective.

      • Laurie says:

        Doesn’t it? We do some work to help feed people in third world countries, and their stories always leave me with a huge sense of gratitude: we are so blessed simply to have food to eat!

    • Laurie says:

      What a great thing, Pauline, and thanks for the Thanksgiving wishes. Know that we’ll be thinking of you and all of our other blogging friends tomorrow, grateful that we know you.

  2. I’m so sorry about your kitty Laurie. Thanks for sharing such a heartfelt gratitude list. It’s easy for us to go down the list of things we are (or should be) grateful for, but recognizing the flip side makes it more than just an exercise in making long lists. Thank you for sharing those examples.

    I am especially grateful for my wonderful in-laws who are allowing us to live in their basement while we pay off student loans. They are so gracious and generous and do so much more than just give us a roof. I love that my kids have such great relationships with them too.

    • Laurie says:

      What a great list you have there, Stephanie. Relationships with grandparents are so very important, and we too, are lucky that we have a nice group of wonderful parents that are tremendous grandparents to our children. Happy Thanksgiving, my friend!

  3. Michelle says:

    These are all great things to be thankful for. I’m loving all of these positive Thanksgiving posts today! This is what everyone honestly needs 🙂

  4. H says:

    I’m sorry about your kitty.

    You made a great list. I’m thankful I’m able to work at home and spend time with my kids.

  5. E.M. says:

    Being grateful for the basic things is important. We take so much for granted sometimes, and when you stop and think of all the things we *really* have to be thankful for, it puts life into perspective. Have a Happy Thanksgiving!

  6. Dear Debt says:

    I am feeling really grateful for all those things right now as well, too. I am especially grateful for my job and the blog community– the two superstars in completely turning my year around. I had 2 years of feeling pretty low and I’ve mostly changed and recovered. Wishing you and your family the best.

    • I feel the same way about the blogging community – it’s been life changing for us too. SO glad that you are conquering your 2 years of “yuck” and that things have turned around. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

  7. Great post. I am thankful for my wonderful family and for having a warm house to live in. I am thankful to have the freedom to choose many things for myself every day. Thank you so much for the wonderful reminder. I hope that you and your family have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

  8. Anita says:

    I’m thankful for my wonderful husband and my family and for all of God’s blessings so far this year! Happy Thanksgiving!

  9. What a wonderful, positive post! I’m also so grateful for my family and all the opportunities we have. I hope you and your family had a great Thanksgiving – judging by this list, it was one full of love and laughter!

    • Laurie says:

      Thanks so much, Laura – glad you enjoyed it. Yes, lots of love and laughter – you are right on the money there, and for that love and laughter, I am very, very thankful. 🙂

  10. Hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving Laurie! I know that feeling of being left out on the holidays. I usually have to be pretty proactive in finding stuff to do. But then sometimes I do love a quiet holiday where I can catch up on a lot of movies. It’s sad about people not only not having enough to eat in this country, but quality stuff. Food banks are typically loaded with processed food. And “food deserts” are more prominent in this country than we think. Yes mac and cheese is cheaper than bananas, but with it comes a future filled with healthy problems, obesity, diabetes, etc. Id love to get involved in an organization that helps change that!

    • Laurie says:

      Tonya, you’re right on the mark here about the food banks and processed foods in general. Unfortunately, we in America are “conditioned” to pick what satisfies our cravings instead of what nourishes our health. Just had the “privilege” of listening to a conversation about this the other day. The truth is though, that after we train our bodies with a few weeks of “real” food, that the processed stuff really tastes quite horrible!

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