Gratitude: January 2012

As many days as possible, I list six distinct things for which I’m grateful. The list is archived monthly.

Here’s January 2012 . . .

That calendars were invented. Numbers. My resolve to not make resolutions. Several choices in corner markets. Recent draws at chess vs. Dad & K. The last of the egg nog.

Andy’s back is feeling better. New commitment to reading. Starting Clash of Kings for the second time. Finishing Junot’s novel, finally. Putting 2012 into a bit of focus (without making resolutions). Leftovers.

A simple agenda. Chipping away at the simple agenda. Talking to Aida for a moment. New red tape to wade through. Christmas money to spend on the fucking follow up appointment I’m sure will lead to nothing. Bad moods.

A great photo shoot with the kitties. All of our big windows that open. January heat wave. Successfully buying a loaf of bread without freaking out over all the brands with animal ingredients. Google docs. Learning that the roots of the word “nostalgia” are “return home” and “pain”.

Border Grill salsa. Instagram. Having my hair blown dry by an expert. Funny overheard sound bites. Adorable photo holiday cards from good friends & family. That the woman from Blue Shield remained persistent in her attempts to help despite my frustration on the telephone.

That Ruby’s paw came out okay after the encounter with the evil night light. Bagel Nosh’s awesome breakfast burritos. Andy’s trip to Bagel Nosh. Ibuprofen. A day of writing. Katha Pollitt.

George R. R. Martin’s gift for seamless exposition. Lykke Li’s cover of “Unchained Melody”. More sunshine. Ruby Ruby Ruby SoHo. Ellie Sweetheart Biter Girl. Towels.

Encountering another new writing teacher, another new world of writers. Getting out to mail thank you notes. Lots of Gs to photograph during my walk today. CA Vegan’s yummy kung pao tofu. Vegan carrot cake. Christmas money to pay for that yummy meal.

Making it through yet another grocery store run. The kind worker there who helped me find peanut butter’s new location. Interesting phone call. Sashimi Tuna. That Walking Dead is available On Demand. A moment to look at the colorful dusk sky.

Red sunrise uncannily like last year’s Jan. 11th sunrise. Receiving a text from LAX. Delightful meeting with my favorite client. Getting to hear a cute toddler’s voice at lunch. Noticing all the interesting documents being typed by people with lots of luggage at the library. One pint at King’s Head just to stare at the place where we once sat.

Kindness of a stranger. Sweetheart candies on beach steps. Seeing little feathers. Seeing a bigger feather right after thinking, “but a bigger feather would be better.” The way, sometimes, just imagining a joke you might make — and the expression you might use — makes me laugh. Sitting at Casa Del Mar and finding photos of you I’d forgotten I stuffed in my journal.

The way the internet allows me to work from home. Availability to be on the phone working through the health insurance roadblock. That my health insurance nightmare isn’t worse. Sitting across from a blind woman at the pizza place. More ricotta cheese. Sleeping pill.

Getting my household financial tracking up to date. A good long walk. Gallery windows. Finding a nice tree for the girls. And that they immediately took to it. Date night w/ Andy, complete with Japanese food.

Kathy’s note. Listening to a person tell her story. Realizing that my anger is just an inevitable snag. New writing goals. That Ruby didn’t hurt herself jumping from the cabinet. Yay, Tyrion!

Walk in the dark. Fluffy warm coat. Andy’s suggestion. New contacts helping with insurance roadblock. Andy’s acknowledgement that this time of year is hard for me. Making it through Vegan Monday despite the pizza in the fridge.

Seeing the Quarter Moon through my kitchen window at 2:30am. Reading Jack’s essay. Accomplishing the thing I’ve been putting off for over a month. Therapy after a month off. Hearing two songs on the radio at just the right time. Starting an amazing new class.

A quiet morning reading and learning. Encountering Philippe de Champaigne’s painting of Sant Augustin with the feather quill, the burning heart and the bright truth. That Ruby was able to get her claw unstuck from the latch by herself without getting hurt. Gorgeous weather and the ability to be out in it. A hug from Ricky the cat on Abbot Kinney. Receiving one of David Phillips’ free paintings.

Brenda’s help on the phone. Getting lots of reading done. Ruby sitting on my lap. Pot pie. The hood to my lavender capilene top. Vitamins.

Hours of work with my favorite client. Dinner w/ Andy’s uncle. Sushi Roku’s tofu steak (so. good.). Making it through January 20th. Some quiet time to mark the date. One last clove smoked in remembrance of G.

The morning rain. That the rain ended so I could take my walk. The bird who posed for my camera. The setting sun behind that bird. The vertical tree branches where the bird sat. The tall red flowers I’ve never seen before.

Spontaneous blog post. A chess win. Another game up to 74 moves and counting. That Andy did the weekly grocery run. Ability to calm down. Chinese New Year.

A hug from Andy. Running into an old friend. Seeing colorful buildings. Pretzel bread. Attending an MFA info session — sounds like heaven. Ease in meeting new people.

Crazy ass colorful sunrise. Camera handy to photograph the sky. Time to get my reading done. Eventually finding a parking spot. Hearing the work of my classmates. Sitting in a comfortable chair.

Finally getting an answer from the insurance company (even though I had to call them to learn the news). That a new clinic could fit me in to their schedule. Seeing Ruby and Ellie together on the castle. A good talk. Completing my reading. A productive day.

Making the morning bus. That the bus came on time. Beautiful weather in which to walk around downtown. Seeing the woman in the yellow dress. Getting a good photo of her. The streetlight’s shadow.

Maintenance man to come replace the fire detector. New smoke detector. That the old keyboard works with the lap top. A day without interruptions. Getting good snaps of Ruby & Ellie. Moisturizer.

650 thread count sheets. Pizza delivery. The way air leaking from the guest bed felt funny on my mouth. Vinyl repair kit. New TV show to enjoy with Andy. Sunset moon.

Sounds of birds from our open windows. Reading on the deck with Andy. Afternoon of being fully present with a fellow writer. Another feather. Cat greeting. On target with Clash of Kings reading.

Sunlight fills our home. Great weather for a morning of errands. The painted leaves on the walls where I lunched. The attendant at my doctor’s appointment. Mammography. A cancer free ultra sound.

Psychotherapy. That the glass Ruby and I knocked over together was only filled with water. That the glass didn’t hit Ellie when it fell. Finding a parking space at class. Hearing amazing pieces from my fellow writing classmates. Learning new approaches to my craft.

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