Can’t wait to get out of this boat & share weekly blessings

Two of the three pastors.  tee hee.

Two of the three pastors. tee hee.

Way back at the end of September–gosh was that only a week ago?–I vowed after reading Harula’s post:

Once a week in October, November and December I will  share Blessings, both received and given.  To consciously acknowledge some of the ordinary and extra-ordinary gifts of each day.  To focus on the many blessings which arise like the sun over our multi-colored ever-changing earth.

Every evening I scribbled a daily blessing in a small notebook covered with multi-colored circles.  The practice, thus far, has proved both inspiring and challenging.

Geese

Geese

Tuesday  Primary blessing both given and received:  visited a 92-year-old friend.  Anita is a former school teacher with a memory sharper than tacks.  She keeps her mind sprite counting backwards by sevens every morning before arising.  (Or was it by nines? *grin*)

Some folks say–how wonderful to visit the elders.  But I always feel like I get as much–or more–from these visits than they do.

She shares jokes and laughs so merrily.  Here is one joke:  Three pastors went fishing out in a boat.  As they fished, one pastor suggested they share some of their trials and temptations, and maybe they could help one another.  The first pastor said he was hooked on gambling at casinos.  He couldn’t stop.  He was very embarrassed.  The second pastor confessed he was a terrible cheat.  He hadn’t paid his income tax in two years.  The third pastor said nothing.  The other two asked, “C’mon, don’t you have any weaknesses you want to share with us?”  The third pastor finally blurted, “I’m a terrible gossip and I can’t wait to get off this boat!”

Beauty

Beauty

Wednesday  Had a terrible headache all day.  Ladies and gents, I think it’s most difficult to count blessings when we hurt physically, mentally or emotionally.  Our attention travels to where it hurts and tells stories about how bad it is.

Blessing received:  phone call from daughter, email from son and loving attention from Barry.  Given:  tried to be loving in return.

Thursday  I sat on the couch, meditating, when the words “I will not shut down” appeared in my mind.  When this happens, it feels like the Universe shares what needs to be written.  The words are mine, yet not mine.  The feelings are mine, yet not mine.  It all rises passionately as something larger than self, and later it always shocks me to think that people imagine I wrote it, or it’s about me.  It feels like the most amazing blessing.

Wrote blogs this week as prayers.  Wrote, turned off computer, let the writing teach me before turning back to others.

In the afternoon gave full listening ear to a troubled friend and later she hugged intensely and said, “I love you so much.”

Fluttering yellow

Fluttering yellow

Friday  Good deeds:  delivered birthday present to a friend’s granddaughter, attended funeral of our children’s former piano teacher.  Blessing:  Found lost paperwork after crawling around on floor at school and digging in boxes–YAY UNIVERSE!

Saturday  Blessing given:  read other blogs for about three hours (truly a blessing received, as well.)  Watched amazing video, The Story of Luke, about an autistic boy and the blessings he gave others just by being himself.  His life was challenged, but he continually inspired others.

It’s easy to think of blessings received, but harder to acknowledge blessings given.  It sometimes feels embarrassing, like calling attention to self.  Usually I like to be invisible in sharing good deeds.  Often the deeds feel to insignificant or unimportant to relate.

Autumn

Autumn

Sunday  Good deed:  took pictures of fall color to share with others.  Received:  A heart-warming email from a reader with many health challenges who shared how much my blog meant to her!   In the evening we ate dinner at a restaurant with my husband’s newspaper staff from the 1980’s.  A former reporter visited from his current home in Vancouver.  The publisher footed the bill!

Monday  At work in the morning I heated water for tea, just standing around the kitchen, spacing out.  Suddenly remembered *good deeds, Kathy!* and looked around to see what was needed.  Put away the dishes.  Later, unpacked boxes of teaching supplies and stored them.

Blessing received:  Don’t know if I told you. Will be subbing for my friend, Ruth, as a Spanish teacher at the school for five weeks.  (No hablo mucho espanol, amigos.)  Ruth prepared THE most wonderful lesson plans so I can just cruise & have fun with the kids & teach them some more wonderful words en espanol.  What a gift!

Open the door to your heart

Open the door to your heart

Such is an ordinary week of blessings here in one ordinary life in the Northwoods of Michigan.  Bless you for reading all the way through!  🙂

About Kathy

I live in the middle of the woods in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Next to Lake Superior's cold shores. I love to blog.
This entry was posted in October 2013 and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

55 Responses to Can’t wait to get out of this boat & share weekly blessings

  1. love how you found blessings even when they were hard to find and the fact that you bestowed many too – wrote my first blessings post yesterday–my weekly column in which I talked about Thanksgiving (coming up on the 14th–have to publish it a week ahead to get it read for the holiday–the next paper comes out the day after)

    • Kathy says:

      I will look forward to reading your blessing blog, LouAnn! I am finding this challenging in many ways, so it will be interesting to read how others share. I wanted to put in the parts where it’s darn hard to figure out what to write about because everything seems to ordinary or you have a darn headache.

  2. Susan D says:

    So delighted to read about your blessings given and blessings received. Wonderful. The pictures just enhance perfectly, too, Blessings Lady 🙂

    • Kathy says:

      Good morning, Susan Dee! So interesting to try & write this. I kept waking up last night fretting about how to do it. Glad you like the chosen pictures. Love to you my friend-across-the-bay.

  3. So many good deeds. I enjoyed reading a life in the week by Kathy. I think I read the challenge wrong and wrote about gratitudes. I will try good deeds next. Your life is so full of neat stuff. And your photos are wonderful.

    • Kathy says:

      I don’t think it’s possible to do it wrong, Linda! Everyone seems to be doing it differently, how their heart feels during the moment and the week. It’s about blessings and that covers gratitudes given and received, good deeds, thanksgiving, whatever. I woke up three times last night trying to imagine how to write this, lol. Glad you liked the photos chosen.

      • I cannot imagine you worrying about how to write…but then we do not know a person truly until they reveal themselves to you.

        • Kathy says:

          Ha–I hardly ever worry how to write! Just every teeny weeny once in a while. 🙂 By the way, when reading your post, I thought the same thing about how YOUR life is full of neat stuff.

          • “Aren’t we a pair” to quote a phrase from A Little Night Music…with one of my favorite songs of all time Send in the Clowns…Judy Collins did a great job. If you have not listened, and have the time, You Tube has her rendition.
            As for politics…the clowns are already there 🙂 so as the song ends “don’t bother they’re already here.” I think that is how it ends anyway, to answer, I will not shutdown which brought on our good deeds and gratitude in protest 🙂

  4. Elisa says:

    I am unable to type words right now.

    Z DID get up like he was to do, in the new plan, I did dishes, cream of buckwheat for us for breakfast, patiently and tolerantly had him help me to measure out ingredients for his beloved GF Brown Sugar Oatmeal cookies, kept up with dishes, sliced chicken and soaked it in buttermilk, had Z do rice, and sent him off to begin his Live Lesson. The kitchen is clean and the majority of the things and chores are completed for the day. I am really glad to have a moment of success. Psst…those red bowls, bring smiles and hugs and compliments of yummy food from Z, even helps him with food issues. YAY!

    Aie carumba!! (I might not be able to spell it anymore Senora Drue)

    • Kathy says:

      How very lovely about the red bowls. Heck I smile when I think of them! (The former offer still stands if you would agree…) Sounds like you had a morning of giving & receiving yourself. The best way to start the day.

  5. Brenda Hardie says:

    Kathy, my eyes are brimming with tears this morning and I am feeling so overwhelmed with worries so please know your presence is my blessing during this troubling time. You brighten my day with beautiful pictures and your words warm my heart and your precious smile adds beauty to my day ♥ Thank you so much for being here ♥

    • Kathy says:

      Brenda, a big hug…was it a rough night with Chloe? Knowing you’re going through some challenging times. Glad that my presence eases your heart with words and pictures. May faith guide your boat…

      • Brenda Hardie says:

        Thank you for the hug—I really need them right now. Yes, Chloe had a rough day yesterday and thankfully got some peaceful sleep last night. She is showing more signs that the rainbow bridge is very close now. I think her body is ready to shut down but for some reason she keeps hanging on. My little girly is such a trooper but I tell her every day that it is ok to let go and cross the bridge. I love her so much and will never forget her loyal and loving companionship ♥ I’m hanging onto my faith but am struggling because of lack of sleep and overwhelming worries and sadly my own body is worn out right now.

  6. What a lovely post, and thanks so much for the pingback. I do get what you mean about declaring good deeds sometimes feeling uncomfortable and self serving, which is why I think acknowledging those received is important too. That said, if sharing them spreads them out a bit then I’ll take a bit of personal embarrassment so others can receive:-) You’re a star…YAY UNIVERSE! Love and hugs, Harula xxxxx

    • Kathy says:

      Why good morning, Ms. Harula, my inspiration! I am glad you liked this post. It was interesting this week to watch both the positive and negative feelings arise around this commitment. Have a feeling there is much to learn before the 13 weeks are up. You are very right about learning to take that personal embarrassment and about sharing giving AND receiving. It seems that it’s a see-saw, sometimes giving more than receiving, and other times receiving more than giving. From one twinkling star to another! Love, Kathy

  7. You’re so very oerceptive, Kathy, about those meditative thoughts. Have fun teaching Spanish! I’m learning it right now. The Pimsler method – jidt speaking and understanding.

    • Kathy says:

      Patty, it’s as if–when we open up–we’re filled. I love it. Hey, you’re learning the Pimsler method? That looked SO interesting. If I was living down south, would be studying Spanish again in an instant. Used to meet and talk with a woman from Chili once a week. So hard, but learned a lot. About five years ago–just before discovering blogging. She moved away, there was no one to talk Spanish with, and, well, blogging took over as a passion! So happy to hear you’re studying.

  8. Susan Derozier says:

    So happy to read about your blessings given and received. It reminded me of when I used to have my students keep a gratitude journal. So often we never just stop to see that we give as well as receive. Life is full of those blessings for sure.

    • Kathy says:

      Susan, did your students like their gratitude journals? I’ll be they did. I think our minds try to convince us that life isn’t full of blessings. The gratitude practices always proves the silver lining, don’t they? Hugs.

  9. Amen~ you got out of the boat to deliver a wonderful message and a joke. Kathy, you are one of a kind. You are a grace-filled person who is most gracious who knows how to be grateful and to feel gratitude. Or something to that effect. 🙂

    Gratitude is one of the best feelings in life. It’s such a shame that more people have not the remotest idea of what gratitude means. To me it all boils down to kindness, love of our fellow man and, appreciation of the large and small things in life. And that is exactly what your post is about today. Wonderful!

    • Kathy says:

      Yvonne, good thing I didn’t TRIP getting out of the boat to deliver this. LOL! Thank you for your kind words. You know what the wise ones say? It takes one to know one! (At least I remember that quote from childhood.) Love what it boils down to for you. Hope you don’t get bored with these posts. 12 more to go until the new year.

  10. sybil says:

    Am sending that joke on to all my friends. Love sharing smiles …

  11. What lovely things to notice and be grateful for!

    • Kathy says:

      Cindy, it was kind of fun writing a post about ordinary everyday happenings, yet also recognizing the gifts tucked into life. Thank you for commenting!

  12. lisaspiral says:

    I think part of the reason it’s so hard to count blessings given is that we can’t measure the impact we have on others. So often it’s the little things that we don’t even remember doing (holding open a door for a stranger, smiling at the grocery cashier) that actually make the biggest difference.

    • Kathy says:

      Lisa, this is so very very true. All week, looking back on each day, I would try to find something that felt *big enough* to share. When, truly, there were dozens upon dozens of acts (given and received) which were very important. The day was a fabric of gifts. By the way, I was having a lovely conversation with the grocery cashier about the time you wrote this comment. 🙂 Thank you for pointing this out.

  13. kathy, Kathy, KATHY – This post just turbo-boosted my joy quotient by a gazillion. THANK YOU 🙂

  14. I’ve read a number of posts by friends who have followed up on your challenge. And that’s a blessing, indeed! You all rock!

    (You’re right–it’s hard to be thankful when you’re in pain.)

    Hugs from Ecuador,
    Kathy

    • Kathy says:

      Hi, Kathy, you know what I think? I think all of our blogs are blessings given & received, no matter how we title them. Love the blessing of your blog sharing!

  15. jeffstroud says:

    Looks like a very full week of blessings to me ! It is a blessing to see that you have found the gifts in the everyday things, the ordinary. The ordinary made extraordinary!

    Hugs and love!
    Jeff

    • Kathy says:

      Jeff, I do truly think that the ordinary often-overlooked things in our world are the most precious, if we but open our eyes to see. Hugs and love back atcha!

  16. msmcword says:

    Kathy:
    I can never have too many reminders about remembering all the blessings in my life.

    I am doing much better about focusing on my blessings-the small ones as well as the big ones-each day no matter how I am feeling.
    Nancy

    • Kathy says:

      Nancy, that is so good that you are doing that. It’s so easy to get side-railed by negativity. I know. Blessings that you took a moment to comment. Fondly, Kathy

  17. Munira says:

    Not only did I read all the way through, I hung on to every word! Sorry to hear about your day-long headache 😦 It is so true what you say (“Our attention travels to where it hurts and tells stories about how bad it is.”)….my tooth didn’t allow me to focus on good deeds and made me feel so self-absorbed!
    Ten days after my tooth extraction, I went back to the dentist today in quite a bit of discomfort from the stitches. With every stitch she snipped off from my almost-healed wound, I thanked her from the bottom of my heart! Such relief!

    • Kathy says:

      So happy to hear you hung on to every word, Munira. I was thinking it might be boring to read. (Don’t you roll your eyes at the stories our minds can make up sometimes in fear or anticipation?) You poor thing about that tooth distraction. Having been to the dentist a bit lately, I can almost feel your pain. And wasn’t it synchronistic that we were posting comments on each other’s blogs at the same time yesterday? Loved it!

  18. Kiah says:

    Blessing received: thanks for being such a wonderful Mum and taking care of me from afar while I am sick!! Love you Mama!

  19. Counting blessings – such a sweet, sweet practice. This is how my grandmother taught me to pray each night. The memory brings tears to my eyes. Thank you for this blessing.

  20. Carol says:

    It is a true blessing to give and receive. You are a blessing.

    >

  21. lucindalines says:

    Kathy; I have nominated you for the Versatile Blogger Award. I am sure you have had this before, so just count it in the mix of al the blessings being sent your way.

  22. Heather says:

    Kathy I love that you’re keeping up with this blessing series. It reminds me to count mine, too. And you’re right – it is much harder to count blessings given.
    Five weeks as a Spanish teacher? Sounds fun and scary – the best kind of adventure!

    • Kathy says:

      Hello Ms. Heather! Wait til you see what I come up with THIS WEEK for the blessing series, har har har, laughing all week at the audicity. OK, maybe will change my mind before Tuesday. Glad you are inspired with the blessing series. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

  23. You are truly blessed and we are blessed by reading all these blessings! 🙂

Although I don't reply to every comment on every blog, I do read all comments with mesmerized interest and try to return the favor by visiting YOUR blog or at least sending you heartfelt well wishes.

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