Words with synonyms for Gratitude in the background. Central are two hands cupped upward holding the word Gratitude
Finding Gratitude on Dark Days by Judith Ashley May 16, 2023 Gratitude: a noun in the English language with synonyms of thankfulness, appreciation, gratefulness, appreciativeness or simply thanks. Being grateful when everything is going well is, frankly, fairly easy. For me the question is: How do people find a place of gratitude when their lives are torn asunder by events outside their control? And then I wonder if, in that moment, if what they search for is even gratitude? There was a mass shooting at an Amish elementary school several years ago. Young children and teachers were killed. At the
Patrick McDonnell personalization of his book for Susie Slanina and her dogs in 2002.
Why I Adore Mutts Comics by Susie Slanina April 11, 2023 “Comic strips are ephemeral. They come into being in our daily newspapers then disappear into recycling bins. They are fleeting daydreams trying to capture simple elements of joy. I always wanted to be a cartoonist.” ~ Patrick McDonnell, creator of Mutts Comic strip. Here’s a review I wrote for Mutts Sundays nearly twenty-four years ago. At the time, Mutts had only been around five years, but it had already captured my heart. Reading this review from all those years ago, it’s quite extraordinary to know that Mutts is still
happy family father and child daughter reading a book with a flashlight in a tent at home
Love Our Children Kathy Coatney March 30, 2023 I’ve been looking at the national holidays and every month there are hundreds of them. One in particular caught my eye—National Love Our Children Day, the first Saturday in April. This is a really important day for me as a parent and writer. Far too many children leave childhood feeling unloved and unwanted. In my opinion, having even one child feel this way is one too many. Every child should feel loved and wanted. Many children don’t have strong male role models in their lives to guide them, but I believe it
white and dark chocolate pieces mixed with cinnamon and fresh mint celebrating National Chocolate Mint Day
Happy Chocolate Mint Day! By Paty Jager February 19, 2023   I’m sure I’m not the only person who loves peppermint and chocolate. That’s why I anticipate the holiday season every year. There are more chocolate and mint combinations of treats at this time of year. The Candy Cane Blizzard with chocolate chunks, the chocolate and peppermint teas, and peppermint hot chocolate. Dark chocolate dates back to the Mayan and Aztec cultures. They developed the harvesting process, believing it had immune-strengthening qualities. Many historians believe that the flavor of mint and chocolate began in the 16th century after Europeans visited
meekat lounging in sand
What Do You Get When You Fall In Love? A Valentine’s Day Tribute to Burt Bacharach and Tony Soprano by Fabienne Marsh February 14, 2023 In February of 2019, the El Paso Zoo launched an event that sated both hungry meerkats and jilted humans. It was an instant hit.   Despite the zoo’s instructions to protect the privacy of all parties by naming the cockroach with only the first name and first letter of the heartbreaker’s last name, people went crazy.  More than 6,800 comments from the US and across the world  infested the site with full names, cringe-worthy accounts
Woman jumping for joy at the beach with 2023 written in the sand
Looking Forward with Hope and Plans by Paty Jager January 10, 2023 I’ve been someone who rarely visits the past. There are a couple of things that happened in my past that shaped who I am today. And while I look back and wish they hadn’t happened, I know I wouldn’t be as independent and strong had my life been all sunshine and roses. And it is the murky past that keeps me looking forward rather than back. What I see laid out ahead of me is a year full of promise, travel, exploring new elements of my writing, and
Januay 2023 calendar that says: "Make It Happen and Happy New Year emblazoned in the bottom right corner
Looking Forward to 2023 by Mary Vine January 7, 2023 I read an article in AARP The Magazine about actress Helen Mirren. She said, “Each year I make the same New Year’s resolutions: I will not procrastinate. And every year, I procrastinate. I will be more communicative. And every year, I fail to be more communicative. Certain character failings stay with you forever, it seems to me.” That sounds like several of us, and the reason many no longer make New Year resolutions. Still, I continue to do so. In Proverbs 29:18a the Bible says, “Where there is no vision,
Scene of a snowy winter in an old-fashioned village with all the inside lights shining into the night
Why Christmas is my Favorite Holiday by Kathy Coatney January 3, 2022 Note from blog manager: Kathy turned this in with plenty of time to get this in the queue for December 13th. However, I (Maggie Lynch) was overwhelmed with a combination of work commitments and family responsibilities and this post fell through the cracks. Kathy’s holiday books are wonderful. Though Christmas has passed, these stories will still warm your heart and provide a great love story and happily-ever-after. Christmas always has so much magic and joy, especially when you have young children around. Their squeals of excitement and wonder
James Webb telescope rendering of the pillars o creation in a far away nebula
Preparing for 2023 by Susie Slanina January 3, 2023 “I always listen to what I can leave out.” Miles Davis It’s nearly Winter Solstice and, for me, a good time to put this Miles Davis quote into practice.   There’s so much going on this time of year. I see it as a time to step back from the noise and chaos, a sort of little retreat. A time to be reflective and look back on the past year which is coming to a close, all the while anticipating and wondering about the new year ahead.  Living in an area that
yellow-gold table with a coffee cap, marker and phone. On a napkin is written "a goal without a plan is just a wish."
New Year’s Day is Renewal and Rejoicing by Maggie Lynch January 1, 2023 There are so many wonderful holidays during the Winter. December brings a plethora of opportunities to celebrate, including Solstice, Hanukkah, Christmas, and Kwanzaa among others. All of these are holidays of reflection, preparation, and celebration. For me, the culmination of all that reflection is New Year’s Day. On New Year’s Day, if I’ve prepared sufficiently, I step into the year with knowledge of the past and hope for the future. That is why it is not only my favorite winter holiday, but my favorite holiday of the