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365 things

liz lamoreux

a few months ago, i started a kind of secret blog called "seek gratitude." i started writing about things i was grateful for each day. but in november i stopped. i wasn't blogging much then and was focused on getting better. on christmas eve, wishing i had stopped to take in more of what invites me to feel grateful in my life and written every day on the other blog, i decided to make this list (and to post on the no-longer-a-secret blog too).

this gratitude list isn’t exactly in an order of importance (because it isn’t like i am grateful for warm toast more than my parents). if anything, it is more a timeline as i reflected on the year by month as i wrote it…though it isn’t really a timeline either (because i am always grateful for fuzzy socks, sushi, laughter, grey’s anatomy, and poetry). so really, just a list of 365 things i am grateful for in the year 2006. (and there are more things, i am sure of it. and i left important things off that didn’t come to me in my holiday chocolate buzz…but it is a list of some things that made this year what it was for me.)

  1. the overall health of my family and friends
  2. living with a man who loves me and supports the person i am becoming and wants to know me more each day
  3. reading the time traveler’s wife. this book introduced me to derek walcott’s poem “love after love,” which led me to the poetry section of bookstores all around the seattle area.
  4. the commitment to taking self-portraits
  5. the telephone
  6. the many, many meals jon cooked for us this year
  7. the artist’s way (starting the journey of reading it with other bloggers)
  8. poetry readings in the bath tub
  9. warm toast with butter and cinnamon sugar
  10. the music of the weepies
  11. snow
  12. polka dot flannel pajamas
  13. all the little things jonny does for me (especially when i yell to him from the couch because i don’t want to move and he is in the room that has something i want in it)
  14. buying my first books of poetry
  15. friendships formed with so many bloggers this year. i am truly blessed to have connected with so many people in blog world in 2006. (i could probably write a list of 365 moments of these connections that i am grateful for…but i am letting this one just cover it.)
  16. chocolate milk
  17. being warm and safe in my home
  18. mary oliver (the way she walks in nature with her words demands that i pay more attention)
  19. william stafford (his spirit pours life into my heart)
  20. may sarton (her poetry, her journals, her words)
  21. a new typewriter
  22. my yoga students
  23. fuzzy socks
  24. flickr
  25. great pens that invite me to put all that is in my head to paper
  26. hours spent playing the game diner dash. it is on my husband’s old computer though and i never did pass that last darn level.
  27. grey’s anatomy
  28. monthly (and eventually come November, weekly) trips to i love bento, our favorite sushi restaurant (because, we do, indeed, love bento)
  29. morning pages
  30. long hot showers where i solve the problems of the world
  31. the movie brokeback mountain
  32. the gift of being able to love
  33. beginning to put paint to paper. swirling the colors together to form new colors.
  34. spending time with my mother when i went back to indiana for a meeting
  35. reading the kite runner in an airport with tears running down my face
  36. reading wicked
  37. hours spent on the phone with my friend heather
  38. the pictures my aunt sent me. the one that means so much to me.
  39. participating in a postcard swap and sending my art out into the world for the first time.
  40. jon’s health (after an evening spent in the emergency room in february)
  41. getting through the first year of missing my golden child traveler
  42. artist dates
  43. my neti pot
  44. the way the crocuses in our front yard popped open in all their glory this year
  45. the community of my yoga teacher training sangha. it was a true honor to be part of such a group.
  46. drinking lots and lots of water
  47. reading blogs and having that moment when you are reminded you are not alone, that yes, someone out there, the very person who wrote those words, completely knows how you feel about something
  48. for our first full year with millie
  49. the serendipitous way my group of portland blogger friends formed and all the time spent with them this year
  50. moleskine journals
  51. my yoga teacher laura
  52. the shells that my grandmother kept in her room that my grandfather sent me
  53. remembering to take my camera with me to capture life
  54. phone conversations with my friend melissa rose that are full of laughter and silliness and truth and honesty
  55. mug after mug of tea
  56. longs talks with patty on yoga weekends
  57. for the crazy, fucked up reality of realizing that with deep grief comes many gifts
  58. for feeling comfortable swearing on my blog (finally)
  59. stretching myself: physically, emotionally, mentally, spiritually
  60. wandering through the aisles of the arts and crafts store to buy things like gesso and gel medium and other crazy things i had never used in my life
  61. my friend julia
  62. the birth of poetry thursday
  63. jars of tulips throughout the house
  64. conversations with my great-aunt honey
  65. for writing, for getting it out of me
  66. my favorite pink sweater (though jon shrank it last month…he didn’t mean to…when i was sick i put it in the washer and he put it in the dryer not knowing i didn’t want it dried…now i just look at it and wish it still fit)
  67. deciding to start to tell more people about my blog
  68. superballs (the ones that bounce and bounce)
  69. that my friend beth lives nearby, even though we do not see each other as often as i wish we would, knowing she is here is a gift
  70. moments where i find my way to the silly side of life
  71. cherry coke
  72. a realization about my eye and my parents and love
  73. learning to say “no”
  74. this post written by michelle
  75. serendipity
  76. naps
  77. rain falling and keeping this corner of the world so green
  78. emails exchanged with my grandfather
  79. my friendship with kathryn, my yoga friend
  80. hummingbirds at the feeder in the winter
  81. poetry readings all alone in my house
  82. reading life’s companion: journal writing as a spiritual quest by christina baldwin
  83. taking pictures of myself each day during the month of march. so many poloroids of me drinking tea.
  84. cosmopolitans
  85. buying myself a superhero bracelet (and wearing it every single day)
  86. my new laptop (even though it recently was not a friend to me, i have loved, loved using it over the last few months and am glad it is being nice again)
  87. walks on the beach looking for sea glass (we don’t really have many shells out here…my grandma and i always looked for shells. but looking for sea glass, she would have loved that too. when i look for it, i think of her, i feel close to her and my memories.)
  88. feeling safe
  89. yoga pants
  90. a trip into my memories of the songs of kenny rogers and how they are a part of the soundtrack of my life
  91. cupcakes
  92. my friend virginia’s strength of character
  93. giggling as i painted a canvas for the first time
  94. the moment when i realized exactly what to do
  95. the music of jonatha brooke
  96. for the day i realized that the little girl inside me is awake and dancing
  97. being introduced to green tea with brown rice through a gift from my friend julia. every. single. day. it warms me up.
  98. seeing the joy on my husband’s face as he watched me have so much fun painting and creating on the night i decided to go to artfest
  99. deciding to go to artfest
  100. the anticipation of artfest
  101. my drive alone in the car up to artfest (singing “galileo” on repeat and just knowing my life was changing with every mile)
  102. the companionship of my dear friend kelly throughout artfest. that because of our instant connection we had one another and just knew how the other was feeling through this incredible experience.
  103. connecting with kim at artfest (we have known each other in past lives, of this i am certain)
  104. meeting kristin steiner and taking a class from her at artfest. (this class changed my life. it did. it completely changed my life. and i am taking a class with her again next year.)
  105. that jon came up to port townsend to stay with me during the weekend part of artfest
  106. vendor night at artfest (one room. over 500 people. all like me. i was truly on overload.)
  107. connecting with tracie lyn huskamp and her artwork (the moment that i stood at her table on vendor night, i knew there was a connection between two kindred spirits and it was so very cool to know she knew it too)
  108. meeting blue poppy and walking with her, arms linked, on the beach at fort worden
  109. teesha and tracy moore and all the good that they put out into the world
  110. being forced to leap outside my comfort zone (even if i was kicking and screaming in my head)
  111. learning how to use gel medium
  112. the beginning of my love affair with fabric
  113. talking on the phone with missy b. and loving how it feels like no time has passed
  114. the chanting, yoga, and meditation class that i taught for a few months this year
  115. that i decided to tell my dad about my blog
  116. trips to portland
  117. chocolate ice cream
  118. learning to set boundaries
  119. the afternoon dana and i spent at the point defiance zoo (and the friendship that began that day)
  120. the hope for peace
  121. knee socks
  122. afternoons spent in letha’s studio
  123. mount rainier
  124. my friend juli and knowing she is out there in the world
  125. the smell of freshly baked pastries wafting out of the french bakery near the market
  126. millie sighing and then laying her head on my leg
  127. comfortable shoes
  128. hot chocolate
  129. getting through the first year since my grandmother’s death. getting through the days approaching the anniversary, the days after as i remembered where i was and what we were doing and how i wished i could touch her just one more time.
  130. seeing my brother for his 25th birthday
  131. visiting powells for the first time
  132. attending my first poetry reading
  133. that my brother introduced me to daniel ladinsky’s translations of the poems of hafiz
  134. watching the birds at the bird feeders (we had a goldfinch this year)
  135. flip-flop weather
  136. sitting on the couch with jon with my feet up on his lap
  137. raspberries
  138. how excited millie gets when she knows jon is home
  139. the day dana agreed to host poetry thursday with me. because of her and our work together this project is growing more than i ever dreamed it might. (and that makes me so happy!)
  140. fresh, ripe peaches
  141. days when the sky is blue
  142. for the days i listen to my body and dance dance dance around the house
  143. noticing all five senses more often
  144. honey nut cheerios
  145. the right to vote
  146. caller id
  147. moments sprawled on the floor surrounded by art supplies
  148. oprah
  149. the artwork of theo ellsworth. when i need to invite my imagination to stretch a bit, i turn to his work. (i met him at artfest, and i still think about his humility and thoughtfulness. i just read that he is at the portland saturday market now. so go and meet him. you will be grateful for him too.)
  150. eating at yuki’s in portland (three times this year)
  151. finding my way to writing some fiction
  152. being honest about feeling grumpy
  153. the day an idea for the november weekend retreat of a small group of bloggers was born and all the anticipation leading up to it
  154. snuggles
  155. finding letters, notes, cards from my grandmother in unexpected places. over the years i have stuck them in books, drawers, boxes and when i clean or pick up a book for the first time in years, i find them. and even though i cry every time, i am so grateful for these unexpected pieces of her. she really did know me more than i ever realized when she was alive.
  156. the west wing (how sad i was to see it end but how grateful i am that for seven years it was my escape from reality)
  157. the wise words of my friend heather; she always has them ready to share
  158. connecting with bloggers through comments
  159. hearing rain falling on the roof as i drift off to sleep
  160. turning 30 (and waving a thankful relief-filled goodbye to my twenties)
  161. the gift of my sewing machine
  162. sundays spent in pajamas
  163. hearing my friend rebecca laugh during our phone conversations
  164. my ipod nano
  165. moments spent in meditation
  166. the movie il postino
  167. gram (jon’s 90-year-old grandmother)
  168. homemade hummus
  169. the song “we walk the same line” by everything but the girl
  170. a little girl named rebecca louise paulson who invited herself into my life one day and keeps hanging around talking to me
  171. listening to the song “virginia woolf” over and over and over again
  172. that my grandfather survived the surgery for his hip and the other health problems he encountered this year
  173. goat cheese and sundried tomatoes
  174. long baths
  175. the weekend retreat that ended my two-year yoga teacher training. it was incredible.
  176. turning on the music of keith urban to wake me up and get me going when my mind becomes a bit sleepy when i work
  177. margaritas (strawberry ones)
  178. sitting quietly together
  179. the kindness of complete strangers
  180. deep, warm hugs
  181. seeing the indigo girls in concert (twice, once with kelly and once with meg)
  182. hours spent watching the show "weeds." it is sometimes nice to just lose myself watching really, really good tv like this show.
  183. getting in touch with my inner love of totally inappropriate humor as i watched an evening with kevin smith.
  184. moments of inspiration
  185. phone conversations with my brother
  186. that several of my friends gave birth to healthy, beautiful babies
  187. fabric depot
  188. realizing that i am grounded in my body. even though i have feelings about how i look and all that stuff, i am simply grounded in my body. it is a good thing.
  189. paul simon
  190. the words to paul simon’s song “once upon a time there was an ocean”
  191. jon’s father coming to visit for father’s day weekend. good times.
  192. seeing my husband interact with his father. the love that is there.
  193. netflix
  194. homemade iced tea
  195. connection
  196. al gore
  197. moments of synergy
  198. marc broussard’s song “home” (i dare you not to dance to it when you hear it)
  199. taking my mom to port townsend when she was here for a visit, walking on the beach hand in hand
  200. moments full of giggling
  201. the time spent with my mom as we made a purse and an apron together
  202. reconnecting with the memories that surround “the happy apple” via dana letting me borrow it (for months now…)
  203. cracking up out loud watching hbo’s "entourage" (two words: johnny drama)
  204. brie
  205. homemade lemonade
  206. moments when i feel sexy
  207. picking up rocks as i walk along the sound
  208. successfully sewing my first purse by myself
  209. spending the fourth of july with friends
  210. moments spent singing in the shower
  211. that my brother is happy
  212. the way god speaks to me through the pedicure lady at the salon i go to
  213. being safe during a storm
  214. a trip to jackson, wyoming to witness two friends get married. a beautiful day, wedding, experience.
  215. spending time with friends who have known me half of my life
  216. the poem “persimmons” by li-young lee
  217. seeing my friends lindsey and brad so in love and hearing them tease one another as we sat together this summer
  218. feeling pretty in a new dress
  219. the grand tetons
  220. that planes can fly
  221. turquoise
  222. stripey socks
  223. starting the daily mirror meditation and the women who joined me during august and september
  224. finding my way to write a poem about sex (and the thought of writing a few more about this subject)
  225. the music of deb talen
  226. seeing the moon in the middle of the day
  227. safe travels
  228. moments spent in child’s pose
  229. that poetry helped me put into words all of the regrets i have about the days surrounding my grandmother’s death
  230. spending the weekend in Portland with dana and her husband
  231. the PEK (poetry emergency kit)
  232. rainier cherries
  233. ikea
  234. moments spent chanting to shiva
  235. orange, blue, brown, green, this year i have been drawn to these colors
  236. seeing my mom’s side of the family at my cousin’s wedding
  237. the joy on my cousin’s face on her wedding day
  238. (selfishly) making it through the first family get-together without my grandmother (the first one is behind me now)
  239. the hummingbird that flitted about right before my cousin’s wedding began
  240. time spent with my mom in durango
  241. standing at mesa verde and feeling
  242. seeing wild horses. real ones.
  243. having an incredible conversation with my cousin jeremy.
  244. hydrangeas in bloom
  245. dinners eaten at the table
  246. spending the afternoon with kristen and meeting her family
  247. rosie o’donnell joining the view
  248. that my friend ryan is safely home from iraq
  249. the poetry of sharon olds
  250. my husband’s smile
  251. a job where i can wear my pajamas or yoga clothes and just be comfy all the time and never have to wear heels
  252. the memories remembered of a house filled with music when i was a child
  253. reading eat, pray, love by elizabeth gilbert
  254. the moment when i looked in the mirror and realized i could see myself as beautiful
  255. that we own a drill and my husband isn’t afraid to use it
  256. beginning to work full time as a stay-at-home-editor for my awesome boss
  257. a steady paycheck
  258. that my dad’s health is okay
  259. spending the afternoon at the pike place market with maureen
  260. netflixing huff, house, weeds, and so many good movies (with so many more to come)
  261. freedom
  262. ideas that wake me up in the middle of the night
  263. moments when i have felt completely content
  264. spending a day shopping with anne when she and my dad visited this fall. i am still smiling about the fun we had.
  265. doughnuts and jam at the dahlia lounge (and the good conversation and laughter that went along with that meal)
  266. watching a notre dame football game with my dad
  267. seeing paul simon in concert
  268. our new kitchen appliances
  269. soft, luxurious towels from restoration hardware
  270. the smell of vanilla
  271. david whyte’s poetry
  272. fleece
  273. "studio 60 on the sunset strip" (still miss "the west wing" though)
  274. organic lip balm
  275. the gift of memory
  276. reading poetry to my yoga students
  277. my favorite soft knit green scarf
  278. that our house didn’t burn down on a sunday in october
  279. moments spent in the quiet
  280. hanky pankies
  281. hair long enough for two braids
  282. red slippers
  283. the ideas that come to me in the shower
  284. the colors of the leaves on maple trees
  285. curling up on the couch with my husband to watch "battlestar galactica"
  286. subscribing to the new yorker
  287. pumpkin scones
  288. the website www.kittenwar.com (hours of fun)
  289. a fall walk in the point defiance rose garden
  290. great bras
  291. the quiet of our new dishwasher
  292. pumpkin spice lattes
  293. writing truth
  294. the ritual of lighting candles as dusk settles around us and blowing them out, sending blessings into the world
  295. produce delivered right to our door
  296. moments spent brainstorming with dana about PT
  297. a weekend in november that i spent with six amazing, beautiful, incredibly talented, and wise women
  298. the realizations, lessons, thoughts, ideas and so many other things that continue to wash over me because of that weekend in november (thank you)
  299. feeling as i walk in my life
  300. that jon took me to the doctor the night i finally admitted how ill i felt
  301. that being ill and scared and unsure of what the future might hold gave me these moments where i realized how much i mean to my parents
  302. paul simon’s song “wartime prayers” (listening to this song over and over again got me through november)
  303. the gift of beginning to talk to my grandmother
  304. friends calling and emailing when i was ill in november (thank you)
  305. the moment when a doctor finally chose to listen to me
  306. tomato soup and grilled cheese
  307. hearing my friend katie’s voice on the phone in a moment when i just needed not to be alone. i know she doesn’t know it, but it meant so much to me.
  308. watching ellen during my two weeks of being on the couch and laughing, laughing, laughing
  309. buying myself a scarf from alicia’s "rosy little things" shop to cover my little scar
  310. feeling rested
  311. antibiotics
  312. the constant companionship of a little stuffed animal named jeero who i took with me to every appointment and who i held during my horrible biopsy experience
  313. the moment a fever breaks
  314. comedy specials on HBO
  315. white cheddar cheese and apple juice
  316. candles from carla’s shop zena moon
  317. the night i called my mom because i was scared and having nightmares while awake and she talked to me for an hour even though it was the middle of the night where she lives
  318. cuddling on the couch with millie
  319. my husband holding my hand through every moment of it (i will not forget)
  320. the lessons (even the ones that invite me to feel like shit)
  321. seeing and hearing david white read his poetry and talk about it
  322. hearing david whyte read his new poem "start close in"
  323. talks on the phone with jon’s mom
  324. cargo pockets
  325. listening to joshua radin sing his songs over and over and over again
  326. polka dots
  327. warm cozy sweaters
  328. moments spent in cobra pose
  329. owning that i am a serious person most of the time and realizing that i don’t need to apologize for it anymore
  330. giving myself permission to not be serious in every moment of every day
  331. deciding to make a stuffy for jon, and then making another one for heather
  332. visiting my friend heather in la: seeing her corner of the world and just spending time with her
  333. moments when a group of people sit together and laugh and laugh and tell stories and laugh some more
  334. godiva chocolates (my favorite are the little open oyster shells)
  335. heat
  336. bloglines
  337. finding the bright spots in the midst of deep disappointment
  338. the moment when the owners of i love bento say, “thank you. bye-bye” as we leave their restaurant. each and every time it just makes me feel good inside.
  339. gingerbread lattes
  340. making some christmas presents this year
  341. for not losing all my pictures from the last few years
  342. new bangs
  343. finding my crafty self
  344. prayers
  345. beginning to speak up (watch out world)
  346. felt
  347. finding a craft store less than a mile from my home (how could i have not known it was there until december of this year after living here for two and a half years?)
  348. that we didn’t have to spend christmas stuck in an airport
  349. for the kindness of jon’s parents
  350. spending three days up in seattle with jon. tourists in our own corner of the world.
  351. new make-up that just makes me feel good (thanks to thea’s suggestions)
  352. christmas eve pajamas
  353. that because we couldn’t go to colorado i got two pairs of christmas eve pajamas (jon had sent the other pair to his parents house so i got those a few days later) and we were able to spend christmas eve with friends
  354. springing millie from the kennel so she could spend christmas with us
  355. spending christmas day snuggled up on the couch with my husband in our pajamas stringing garland for our little tree and watching lots of movies
  356. the movie night at the museum and the wonder i felt inside watching a museum come to life
  357. winning an item on ebay
  358. moments when i stop everything to get up, ipod nano tucked into my clothes, earphones on, and dance around the house. i love those moments. here’s to more of those moments in 2007.
  359. my friend melissa rose’s sense of humor and the way she looks at the world. she invites me to be just a little less serious about things. (thank you)
  360. continuing to find my way
  361. the wisdom of others who came before me
  362. that the new year brings the promise of all that is to come
  363. creating an altar where i burn my daily “intention” candle
  364. the six little words that were my favorite words of 2006: there is no evidence of cancer
  365. the opportunity to learn the lessons without cancer