Giving Thanks


Exit polling done during last week’s election shows widespread discouragement and dissatisfaction. And yes, I understand that the economic heyday of the past hasn’t returned. But there’s still much to be grateful for. This is one of the things for which I fault our leaders. Politicians paint a dismal picture of anything and everything as it suits their own goals. As we approach Thanksgiving, though, let’s consider the glass half full. Here are a few ways I do this.

Gas. It’s cheaper than it’s been for a while. Had it been high, we would have been playing the blame game on that. Instead, we just take it for granted. Those of us driving distances this Thanksgiving will definitely feel less of a pinch at the pump.

Weather. Okay. Winter has come earlier than usual this year and likely because of global warming. As contradictory as ‘polar vortex’ and ‘global warming’ sound, scientists do have explanations for it. The good news here? Lightweight down. Jackets and coats made of this are all over the malls, and some are pretty inexpensive.  Here’s the one I just bought (click on the image to see where).  It’s totally cozy.

lightweight down

The economy. Yes, many people still do not have jobs and, yes, existing wages aren’t climbing. But the stock market has strengthened, and this may affect bosses, who will feel better about things and won’t lay people off.  In fact, more jobs are being added each month. The economic rebound may be slow, but it’s happening. Why are we not hearing more about this?

Health care. My neighbors in New Hampshire initially had one insurance carrier to choose from. As of the coming open-enrollment period, they will have five. Moreover, I can personally name ten people in my own state who have affordable insurance for the first time in their lives. They’re pleased, and so am I. The more people – especially young ones, which these ten are – who sign up, the cheaper it will be for us all.

Ebola. Oh, it’s serious. I’m glued to the screen, heartsick watching news reports of the devastation in West Africa. But the international spread that many of us feared appears for now not to be happening. Moreover, extra forces are at work searching for effective treatment and a vaccine.

Holiday safety. Flameless candles. Need I say more?

flameless candles

Food. Clementines are now in season. Yay!

TV.  The worst of the new fall shows are starting to be cancelled. And “Downton Abbey” returns in January, “Game of Thrones” in March, and “Outlander” in April.

I’ve forgotten a slew of good stuff, I’m sure. What’s on your list?





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  1. Katrina Epperson on November 13, 2014 at 10:29 am

    Very insightful. I think a lot of people don’t often stop and count their blessings. I think that’s just one of the reasons there’s so much unhappiness in our society. Thank you for sharing.

  2. maryb on November 13, 2014 at 11:01 am

    Love your coat. I also love your books. Have read everyone. Cannot for the newest.
    Have a safe and healthy holiday season.

  3. Diane Blaser on November 13, 2014 at 11:13 pm

    i agree with every point you made Barbara! I have so much to be thankful for and I start every day with a prayer of thanks for my life…as crazy as it is, I wouldn’t change a thing! Thank you so much for all the wonderful books you’ve written over the years; each one has taught me a life lesson and has helped me through some very challenging times. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

  4. Sue Batton Leonard on November 21, 2014 at 2:13 pm

    Look forward to your next book “Blueprints,” I so enjoy your writing, and this next book I am sure I will enjoy since I came from a family with a home construction business that has lasted 5 generations.Blueprints were as common as wallpaper in our house.

    What am I grateful for? My memoir “Gift of a Lifetime:Finding Fulfilling Things in the Unexpected” my first publication ever has been published and has won three book awards in the independent publishing world.

  5. Connie Carroll on December 2, 2014 at 4:22 pm

    Thank you so much for this post. I echo your sentiments. We have so much to be grateful for.

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