And so begins my birthday "week." As I take days to contemplate my life, and days to eat (I hope someone remembers to buy one) chocolate cake, gratitude will be my primary goal. I will try to focus on gratitude for what I have, rather than what I don't. Gratitude for who I am, rather than dissatisfaction with who I am not. Gratitude for those in my life, rather than yearning for those who aren't. I strive daily to be mindful and in the moment. To focus on my food before inhaling it. To say "love you" before I dash out the door. Alas, I falter a lot in the process. How about you?

Open this video to full screen and contemplate the message. And feel free to commune here. Wishing you all a wonderful and mindful Thanksgiving week.


11/19/2012 06:31

Thanksgiving for you, Laura! Happy Happy BirthDay week!

11/19/2012 08:03

Happy Birthday Week dear Laura! Thank you for posting this beautiful video. Loved the little girl playing hop-scotch. Hope your Thanksgiving is filled with joy.

Laura Novak
11/19/2012 08:54

Thank you, ladies. Tell me, what are you grateful for? This morning while driving my son to school, I noticed the formation of the clouds. I don't focus much on clouds other than to wonder what they'll mean for my day. But this video made me realize that they are as ephemeral as all the rest and that appreciating what is above us is as important as what is in front of us.

11/19/2012 16:45

Happy Birthday Week Laura- and Thanksgiving also. I am like you- I try to focus on gratitude. This week I am grateful that a friend of over 45 years is not quite as sick as we feared a couple of days ago. I am grateful that we will still have time to sit and laugh and remember when we were 20. I am grateful that my children are such a big part of my life and that I can sit quietly and listen to my grandsons chatting away as they are busy drawing. I am grateful that I have a man in my life- for almost 40 years- who still thinks I am one hell of a woman. And I am grateful that I have finally found the courage to look at my mother's suicide 50 years ago and begin to come to terms with it. What more could I ask? Gratitude is always about the things closest to our heart.

Laura Novak
11/19/2012 17:14

Granny J, what a lovely message. Thank you for sharing every bit of it. I hope your friend does well. And I will think about the sound of your grand kids chatting. It's a delightful treat to listen to kids talking in our midst. I'm sorry for your loss. But I am glad that you can now face such a horrific situation. Our journeys are hopefully long, even if it takes a long time to examine part of it. Thank you and be well. This is truly such a lovely comment.

11/20/2012 05:22

Thank you Laura. You share so much of yourself and your journey in your posts, you create a place for others to feel safe enough to do the same.

11/20/2012 10:42

Happy Thanksgiving! GrannyJ: I concluded from my father's difficult early life (and his siblings' rather easier ones) that the nicest, best people I know are the ones who faced big problems when they were young. And now (like learning a new word), I see the truth of that everywhere.

I am esp grateful this Thanksgiving. I can't put it all into words. But I will cite my few and deep friendships -- one with my lifelong best friend from second grade, and several others I don't want to minimize by caging them in with words. The e-friendships here and on a few other blogs, as we sorted out some very puzzling, hard-to-believe chicanery and learned a lot from readings others suggested and that we noodled around.

Grateful that we have a very able and wise team trying to minimize war and help our country do better.

Very grateful for all of this, and more.

11/20/2012 13:22

Laura -- I've been baking all morning. Here is a Happy BirthDayWeek cake . I hope there are many, many more.

Laura Novak
11/20/2012 16:44

Thank you Granny J. A blog is only as good as the wonderful people, like all of you, who visit it. And Ottoline, I love the cake! Did you bake this??? I also like your thanks and gratitude as written here. Old friendships and E-friendships: they take different forms but are memorable in their own special ways. Thank you all!

11/27/2012 18:23

Laura, as someone who use to comment here frequently, I've been wondering about something. You use to have great discussions about..."Babygate!"

No one seems to want to talk about this..."anymore!" Why? I'm not just talking about your blog, but so many others, too. Even you, left your blog for some time during this period. Are blogs being paid to..."back off"...or threatened? We all know Sarah faked a pregnancy but it seems to be a..."NO...NO" discuss anymore.

Is there any explanation for this, that you know of? I don't want to list all the blogs that have gone south that discussed Sarah's fake pregnancy, but it's pretty remarkable. Some are still standing but will not discuss "this" issue. They just tease about it.

BTW, a very Happy Birthday to you!

Laura Novak
11/28/2012 12:53

Thanks for the birthday wishes all! Got a few loose ends to tie up and then will try to get a new post written. Ginger, I can only tell you one thing for sure and that was that no one ever offered me any money to either write about it or shut up about it all! As I wrote in my "Perftect Timing" post, her lack of a political job coincided with my need to move on. I didn't have any of the leads or resources that many other bloggers had. I think that Regina and I sensed that we'd done what we could. In terms of other bloggers, I have no idea what they think. I'm not in touch with any of them. And I don't have anything intelligent to add to the conversation at this point. Frustrating, I know.

11/29/2012 07:04

A strange thought, regarding Ginger's post. Can it be that women are still so unimportant, so marginal in the power of the world that someone who commits the atrocities and crimes Palin did simply slips through the cracks. Should I be hoping for the day of gender equality where a woman suffers equal scrutiny of a man-- no matter what the topic. Even childbirth and mothering?

Really. We are so incidental. At least, that's what I feel at times.

11/29/2012 07:07

not enough coffee yet to write clearly, but I reckon yall get my point inspite of the booboos.

FWIW, my sister sent me a link to a Global Women's Event on Valentine's Day 2013. Not sure how I feel about it or what it really means but yall may be interested.

11/29/2012 10:12

Ginger and V-A, I too often wonder about women's place in this world. The disregard that men often hold us in, even when they purport to love us, or like us. Except for Stockholm Syndrome, we are important to ourselves -- and the Women's movement has helped that sensibility grow. I feel that each time I hear Gloria Steinem speak and offer me new illumination.

I think interest in exposing the Palin Hoax has withered due to direct, successful MSM suppression of any discussion of it, esp in the context of GOP dirty tricks. Because to expose it opens too many other cans of worms, like enabling by GOP VIPs, why did Schmidt/Wallace remain mum, McCain, ties to the fundies, corruption in AK, etc. Also, we got so busy with the election (pre- and post-, all pretty riveting), Petraeus/Benghazi and whether a real other shoe will drop there. And a big thing is the supposed FBI attn to Dairygate. I guess we all wonder whether any kind of justice will prevail there. If yes, the pregnancy hoax should find a way to unfold. If no, then my guess is the hoax will remain protected.

So: not much point for us little bloggers to flail around on this topic -- let's see what the big guys are willing to do, or will not do.

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