Filberts are nasty.

But I am grateful for the other nuts in the can.

And I am grateful for a nut of a sister who treated us to lunch and a Scheel’s Scotcheroo and then called me just because and told me silly things.

And I am grateful for a demo’ed bathroom floor so clean you could eat nuts off of it – holy hazelnut, Dad!

I am grateful that I don’t have to worry about which nut goes to the White House. As my pastor says, the worst thing is not the last thing.

Like I said. Filberts are nasty. Unless they are in chocolate cupcakes or chocolate spread. Then I am grateful for those hazelnutty silly-named Filberts. But don’t name your child Filbert, please. Great name for a nut or a pig or a jalopy or a philodendron. Just not a child.

Filbert for sale.

On my honor, I will try…


On my honor, I will try:
To serve God and my country,
To help people at all times,
And to live by the Girl Scout Law. – Girl Scout Promise, with three fingers held up

And not eat all of the boxes.

And not hide the Thin Mints or the Caramel DeLites.

And walk 10,000 plus many more when I eat all of the boxes.

I am grateful for a cousin’s granddaughter Girl Scout and for her mama who posted on Facebook that her daughter was selling cookies because Girl Scouts never come to our door.

I am grateful that I didn’t buy all of the boxes. Just most of them.

I am grateful for cookies, with the exception of Fig Newtons.

I am grateful for the wonderful smell of fresh-baked oatmeal raisin cookies that filled the house on Sunday afternoon, and I am grateful that I don’t like raisins and really didn’t care about those cookies since I had many boxes of Girl Scout cookies hidden in the cabinet.

People have got to learn: If they don’t have cookies in the cookie jar, they can’t eat cookies. – Suze Orman

I am grateful for that subtle financial wisdom from Suze Orman, but it has not translated over to my non-diet yet. I think it is a tragedy if there are no cookies in the cookie jar.


Wag your tail instead of your tongue and you will have friends.


Asphalt sparkles under a streetlight. I am grateful for that urban beauty.

I’m grateful for the yoo hoo birds that have arrived on our street and say hello in the early morning just before sunrise.

I am grateful for outdoor lighting on homes that make them even more beautiful.

I am grateful for multiple porch lights on, lighting the way.

I am grateful for sore shins, calves, hips, and my bottom, all of them telling me “it’s about time.”

I am grateful for the motivation wrapped in a black wrist band blinking my progress and spurring me to get my 10,000 in every 24 hours.

I am grateful for a companion who walks beside me in the darkness, and it is okay if we walk in silence, because we both know it is not a punishing silent treatment but a comforting, reassuring silence, quietly shouting that we are together and we enjoy each other’s presence without crowding the time with words.

I am grateful that when the deep emotional hurt bubbles to the surface, God provides a balm in the form of a hug, a hand held, and a letter from Geri.

I am grateful that when hurtful words are spoken and when healing words are just a wish in this heart, God wraps his arms tight and reminds me that HE will never leave me or walk away from me, HE loves me, HE will pursue me, and I matter to HIM.

I am grateful for the reminder that I can’t change opinions. I can only work on myself and keep taking steps forward, not backward. 10,001, 10,002, 10,003…sore shins, sore calves, sore hips, sore bottom, sore heart. All evidence that in pain, there can be gain.

And I am grateful for a little dog’s wagging tail.

A mosquito in Puerto Rico ate a burrito. So did I.

I am so grateful I am done raising.

I just don’t have it in me to parent children in this world.

I am so grateful for my daughters who have it in them.

I am grateful for a Valentine from our neighbor’s little girl.

I am grateful for leftover burrito at lunch time.

I am grateful that mosquitoes do not like cold weather.

I am grateful for cold weather and low humidity. Rain forests are pretty in pictures, thank you.

I am grateful that it’s not the end of all things because I didn’t get my Christmas/New Year’s/Valentines sent yet which will now have to become Easter cards, and my grandchildren will be just fine without a Valentine from Ama on Saturday but might be surprised with one on Monday or Tuesday when they arrive in the mail.

I am grateful that Max is excited to move and that he will have friends nearby and good food every day.

And I am grateful for toast.

Timely fashion.

I am grateful when my teeth don’t hurt.

I am grateful when I am not cold.

I am grateful when I am feeling happy and not sad.

I am grateful when my boss treats us all to Chinese for lunch.

I am grateful when I feel real and appreciate my loose and shabby.

I am grateful when I smell Bath & Body Works evergreen.

I am grateful when someone responds to email in a timely fashion.

I am grateful when the laundry basket is empty.

I am grateful when the Holy Spirit prompts.

In the context of Quaker worship, it is perfectly appropriate for any person in the congregation to speak a timely word from the Lord. – Richard Foster

I am grateful when the porch light is on.

I am grateful when I walk into the kitchen and see healthy Foley towering in the window and looking all confident and gorgeous red.



I am grateful for the Flint Hills.

I am grateful when celery is mild and isn’t bitter.

I am grateful when I am sitting in church and feel like no one else is there, because the message was spoken just for me or the song was played or sung just because I needed it and He knew what I needed to hear.

When sermons start where people live – their questions, struggles, and concerns – and then offer a timely and helpful word from the Scriptures, people are more interested in hearing what else the Scriptures have to say. – Adam Hamilton

I am grateful for sudsy dish water.

I am grateful when people understand.

I am grateful for sweaters not scratchy.

I am grateful for memories of vereneke at CBA.

I am grateful when I get a notice that my student loan is almost paid off.

I am grateful for restraint.

I am grateful for red velvet. Cake, that is. And rabbit. Velveteen, that is.


We could sell you a dead horse. – Geri

It’s true. I am a sucker for a halfway decent sales pitch. Probably not even halfway decent. Minimally decent is more like it.

Act kind of real and genuinely interested in me while telling your story about how this product has changed your life or how it has become your mission in life to change the world or how your long lost child developed some sort of disorder and then found Jesus because this soap worked miracles, and I’ll buy a case.

I was at the salesperson circus this past weekend in Oklahoma City and I was all in. I was the elephant walking in circles, gobbling up the peanuts thrown at me from almost every booth. Geri was the trainer, leading me around in circles, showing me the bells and whistles and every last gloriously beautiful thing that I must have because it would make me 1) beautiful 2) skinny 3) sleep better 4) cook better 5) my house so perfect 6) my grandchildren so happy 7) the only one in the world with this piece of incredible art.

I’m just glad I don’t really like lots of jewelry and sequin-y hats and 47 kinds of salsa and anything that has an arrow embellishment, glad I was scatterbrained enough that I didn’t bring my purse in that held my debit card but just put some cash in my pocket, glad I wasn’t toting seven grandchildren all day because we would have had to buy a few of the $80 carts they were selling to haul the junk, glad I’m not into Oklahoma/Texas t-shirts and décor for the home, and glad that we had to park a little way out because it kept me from purchasing every. last. thing.

What DID I walk out with?

The best night’s sleep in the whole wide world! My pillow! Dot Com…

Actually, TWO pillows dot com, plus one travel pillow dot com. Okay. And a few other bags of stuff, too.

I am grateful for a wonderful weekend with Geri.

I am grateful for a really nice hotel with really nice employees.

I am grateful for laughter and more laughter and even more laughter.

I am grateful we could pick up where we left off like it was just yesterday.

I am grateful that Geri likes chicken fried steak, just like me.

I am grateful that my feet didn’t completely collapse and the blisters were only temporary.

I am grateful for a friend who listens and pretends that I don’t talk too much.

I am grateful for Falling in Love, the perfume, and for actually falling in love.

And I am grateful that Geri knows all about my pillow dot com, so that if it isn’t the best night’s sleep in the whole wide world, I’ll know who to call to complain about it.



Oh come on. Just watch. And then jump.


I am grateful for cheap gas before a road trip.

I am grateful for the ability to maneuver through a spreadsheet.

I am grateful for this video that our friend shared with us last night. I heard about it last week, and I love love love Steve Harvey, but I now love love love love Steve Harvey.


I am grateful for good-smelling dish soap.

I am grateful for a cardinal’s song.

I am grateful for friendly adults. There really aren’t very many these days.

I am grateful for clean water to drink.

I am grateful for wispy clouds.

I am grateful for the way I feel when the day is done and it was productive.

And I am grateful for this song. It should be sung at my funeral. My funeral will be all music at this rate.



There are days I’ve taken more than I can give
And there are choices that I made
That I wouldn’t make again
I’ve had my share of laughter
Of tears and troubled times
This is has been the story of my life

I have won and I have lost
I got it right sometimes
But sometimes I did not
Life’s been a journey
I’ve seen joy, I’ve seen regret
Oh and You have been my God
Through all of it

You were there when it all came down on me
And I was blinded by my fear
And I struggled to believe
But in those unclear moments
You were the one keeping me strong
This is how my story’s always gone

I have won and I have lost
I got it right sometimes
But sometimes I did not
Life’s been a journey
I’ve seen joy, I’ve seen regret
Oh and You have been my God
Through all of it
Through all of it

Have sightreading. Will travel.

I am grateful for:

  • The beauty of wood grain
  • Un-popcorned ceilings
  • Really thin tortilla chips
  • Flannel
  • Sanitation employees who clean up disgusting in restrooms
  • One more day of work this week, or, a three-day weekend
  • Independence
  • The ability to sightread music and opportunities to play the piano for three choirs

Beauty in wood grain is a lot like the beauty of a leaf or the beauty of a naked tree or the beauty of a snowflake under a magnifying glass. Intricate and unique and meant to be noticed.

Un-popcorned ceilings are easy to accomplish and make a big difference in updating a space. Messy, yes. Difficult to do, no.

Really thin tortilla chips are extra crispy and that just means better.

Flannel is comfort and everyone needs comfort.

I know I have a tendency to OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder-iate) when it comes to public restrooms, but there is a beautiful lady who travels with a large cleaning cart all the day long and she deserves jewels in her crown today for cleaning up the worst in the men’s restroom. Bless her, Jesus.

Looking forward to a Geri weekend in Oklahoma. It has been too long since I could celebrate her birthday with her, and I am grateful for the anticipation!

I didn’t even have to ask permission to plan it, either. Planned it, reserved it, and saved for it. Independence is a good thing.

A decade and a half of piano lessons, a God-given gift, and years of experience earned me the joy of accepting opportunities to play for choirs at church. It used to be easier when I didn’t have to wear glasses and could hear better out of my right ear, but I will accept until no longer wanted or needed.