“If you want to find happiness, find gratitude.”

Steve Maraboli

November is upon us and it is only fitting that we talk about thankfulness. I have had an interesting reminder lately of something I have taken for granted for years. You see, a little while ago, my oven made an interesting “pop” it was a signal that said it was no longer going to be with us and that my days of baking in that white masterpiece were over. It was warm outside so we decided it was ok. We would commence the oven search later and utilize our summer cooking tools which consist of the grill and smoker. It was not long before there was a longing in my heart to bake things. It was a silly longing but even premade tollhouse cookies seemed to feel as if they were completely out of reach.

I am excited to announce that we have acquired a new white beauty. (I like white kitchens). This range has more buttons than I know what to do with. It roasts, it convects (maybe that isn’t a word), it dehydrates… The list goes on and on. The thing that it does that I love most is, it bakes. I feel a bit like a character from Forest Gump as I have already made two types of muffins and we have only had it for a day. I have been listing all of the items I plan to bake to my husband. He patiently smiles at me because frankly, I am acting like a giddy child! The smell of freshly baked goods wafting through the house is such a warm and welcoming scent. It makes me feel like I am making a warm and cozy home.

Let’s be honest. There is a lot of tough stuff going on in the world. Perhaps you are in the midst of a huge struggle right now and it is hard to wrap your mind around a feeling of gratitude. It may feel as if it is much more comfortable to stay uncomfortable in focusing on the bad things that are happening around you. I want to encourage you to try to look up. Notice the things that are around you that are going right. When you walked into your room last night and flipped that little switch next to you, light filled the room. When you were thirsty, the sink was nearby ready to dispense clean water.

Sometimes we need to stop and take notice of the little things going right so that we can maintain the energy to face the tough stuff. We live in a place where a lot of things go right for us every day. Shoes, clothes, warm food, shelter, water, these are all things that are readily available and seem so automatic.

This time of year can be trying. Painful family situations can often rise to the forefront. Loneliness can set in when your relationships are not where you want them to be. Those things can take a toll and feel like a powerful weight keeping you from moving forward. I want to encourage you to change your focus. Pick the little things and focus on being thankful for them. It won’t fix the big things going on in your life, but it will help your emotional bucket to fill just a little to help you handle those bigger things.

Know that we are here for you. Sometimes the big stuff is too overwhelming and you need someone to walk alongside you. Give us a call. We are happy to help.

Not that this is a bribe, but if you come to Greeley, there may be a baked good ready to be shared because I have a brand new oven!

Please also know, we are thankful for you. We appreciate your trust and willingness to share your hard stuff with us. Be well and may you be blessed with big and small stuff this holiday season.