Leading up to the ultimate day of thankfulness, November is an ideal month to practice gratitude. When you live in a place that allows you to witness all four seasons (and their extremes), you get to have a visceral, physical experience of the seasons of life as well. As we approach chilly winter, when temperatures and winds and short, dark days often force us inside, it’s all too easy to get lost in our own minds. For me, that means hunkering down and getting miserable. So November provides a great backdrop for 30 days of gratitude. This is probably not a coincidence: just as we get cold and cranky, so too are we to pay homage for all the good that exists in our lives.
For November’s 30 days of thankful challenge, I’m writing down on little scraps of notebook paper 30 things I’m grateful for, one for each day. These scraps are going into an old spaghetti sauce jar that’s sitting on my kitchen table. At the end of this month, I’m not sure what I’ll do with the jar and with all my thankfuls. My craftier, Etsy-esque friends might make a holiday wreath, or hanging their pretty little thankfuls from clothespins around a Christmas tree. I might do this later. But for now, the jar will do.
Some days you might share your thankfuls with the world, or you might hold them close to your heart instead. Some of my own thankfuls are obvious and big ones that often are the objects of gratitude (beloved friends and family, my dog, work that is gratifying and challenging), but I can already see, in just two short days, some of the smaller things that deserve some thankful (just as one example, stamps! Isn’t it amazing that you can receive a postcard from your brother-in-law halfway around the world, in India, and know that it cost him about 50 cents to send? That’s so cheap! And look how far that postcard traveled! I find it incredible).
Will you participate in the 30 days of thankful challenge with me? How will you collect (and display) your thankfuls? Just maybe, these little scraps of paper in this old spaghetti sauce jar will give me warmth and comfort, in the darkest and coldest season.