Three Days of Thanks: Day One

Three days of gratitude during Thanksgiving week

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Photo courtesy of Rene Boinski via

In a world of horrific daily events, finding a way to be thankful for the good seems especially important this week. Many in the U.S. will soon be celebrating Thanksgiving and in keeping with this theme, I will endeavor to stop for a minute and discover what I’m truly thankful for.

I live in southern California and have experienced the terror of wildfires firsthand. My family and I have had to evacuate twice in the last ten years or so. My oldest daughter was so close to one of the fires that the police officer told her that should the fire get any closer, she was to abandon her vehicle and run. And because she was of a certain age at that time (brain not yet fully formed), she videotaped the fire and the local news used the tape.

Scary, I know, but at least for the wildfires we experienced, we had time to decide what would come with us in our one or two cars and what would stay behind to burn.

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Photo taken from my daughter’s bedroom on May 14, 2014/Poinsettia Fire

Even though the last fire near us was over four years ago, we still have most of the important documents, photographs, memories, and other various things we might need, packed in a plastic bin in the garage, ready to go. We have a pet carrier for our cat stationed right next to it, and know precisely where the file is that contains the most important documents we would need to prove identity (passports, birth certificates, social security cards).

For today’s post, I want to tell the world how thankful I am for my home. I am truly lucky it still stands and provides my family and me with shelter.

A few days ago, I read that over 7,600 homes have been destroyed in the current fires still raging in California. It is a number that boggles the mind. I live in a planned community of 1,100 homes. It’s like trying to imagine seven of my neighborhoods burning to the ground.

7,600 families will not have a home to eat Thanksgiving dinner. 7,600 families will not have a home to share the wonder of Christmas and Hanukkah. 7,600 will not have a home to ring in the New Year. 7,600 families lost everything they own including their memories.

I’ve started my three days of gratefulness posts with my home because I’m usually so critical of it and its shortcomings. I’m choosing now to be thankful beyond measure we still have a place to call home. We still have all our memories. We still have all our important papers. We still have our photographs. We still have our pets. We still have a place to celebrate our upcoming birthdays, the upcoming holidays, and to welcome friends and family into.

This year, to honor the victims of California’s deadliest fires ever in recorded history, I will, for the first time in 20 years of owning my home, be grateful I have one. I will not be critical of it. I will find ways to show it some love. Maybe that sounds silly to you but to me, it demonstrates gratitude.

What is one thing you are grateful for today? Write it below.

P.S. I chose the top photo of an ancient home in Iceland because it stopped me in my tracks. I took a similar photo because I visited Iceland over the summer. I thought that someone had found my photo on the Internet and used it as their own but that’s just silly — it’s a very common photo taken at a museum near Reykjavik.

I recall the day we went to visit the museum — it was a day just like the one in the picture: cold, dark, gray, raining, and I couldn’t imagine myself surviving a season living in this ancient home, let alone a whole lifetime. I am grateful my home has modern conveniences and is very warm.

Day 8 of the 30 Day Blogging Challenge I dared myself to start (and finish).

Far more interesting internally than externally. I write to quiet the voices. Deleted Facebook & Twitter thereby immediately quieting 1000’s of voices.

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