Today I'm linking up with the lovely Maxibella Loves, who each Saturday blogs about things which make her grateful.
Taking time to stop weekly, even better daily, to think about the things in your life that are going right, rather than concentrating on everything that's gone to shit, makes a person realise that actually, life's not so bad after all!
My 'grateful for' lists usually include the obvious things like my kids, pets, a roof over my head, friends and family. And while that's still the case, this weekend I'm trying to think outside the box.
So here's what made me feel grateful this weekend:
My single life
Contrary to popular belief, being single and/or being a single parent does not have to suck. Of course there are moments when I miss, ahem, the intimacy of having a partner. And there are the times when I physically would love to have a big strong man around. Like when the gas bottle for the stove needs to be changed, there are dead vermin to be disposed of, or there are lightbulbs to be changed.
But there are so many awesome things that come with being single too. Less washing and ironing. If I don't have the kids, I don't have to cook. I don't have to slave away to make money for someone else's lifestyle choices. And there are no wandering hands in the middle of the night when all I want to do is 'Go the Fuck To Sleep'.
(And please don't take that to mean I'm anti-men. I love men; some of my best friends are male. It's just that, at this stage in my life, I'm enjoying putting my energies into my relationship with myself and my kids.)
Good food and drink
Even though I'm a card-carrying member of the Boombah Club, I watch what I eat. But that doesn't mean I have to starve myself as I might have when I was younger. Lately I've realised that a healthy diet doesn't have to mean deprivation. I can still enjoy every bite I put into my mouth. Eating mindfully, quality over quantity, and organic wherever possible. Just perhaps smaller portions than usual. Or skipping dinner when I have a big lunch. (See above). Weight loss is just one goal, but putting good nutrients into my body and enjoying the taste and textures of food and drink is a pleasure of life, and another essential part of staying healthy.
I have a clunky old TV in my bedroom, which only gets three channels. But on the nights when I don't have the kids, I love nothing more than climbing into bed early, propping myself up with pillows and my laptop, the poodle and cats gathered around me. And then I tweet, sometimes with my snark on, while I indulge in reality shows like The Block and Masterchef.
On the weekends, sans kids, it's the same, but with the addition of the weekend newspaper and/or a good book. Bliss.
Blogging has not only given me an outlet for my writing (which is kind of my therapy too). It's also opened up a world of opportunities. Just last weekend, the fabulous media-savvy companies, Continental, Kia, Zuji and Hyundai, gave me enough sponsorship to allow me to attend Nuffnang Australia's blogopolis conference in Melbourne. I could never have afforded the airfares, flights, car-parking, transport and accommodation had it not been for their generosity. Not only did I learn more about social media in one day than I had in years of being a part of it; I got to catch-up with and meet the bloggers I admired.
I know traditional medicine has its place, and I use it whenever necessary. But Oh My Goodness, a session with a good alternative and/or wholistic health specialist can be amazing. I'm talking an honest-to-goodness, true-blue one. Lately, I've received a lot of no-drugs, no-surgery relief thanks to really amazing natural health specialists. It's made a world of difference.
So there you have just a few things that make me happy and/or grateful.
Readers, what are yours?