***This post is part of a Thankful Loop post as part of the Natural Living Bloggers Helping Each Other Facebook Group. Please click the links below to read other bloggers post within the loop, you won’t be sorry!:
A Day of Thanks, Today and Tomorrow
I used to live my life on edge. Not to be confused with on “the” edge, because risky business has never been my forte, but just on edge. I was stressed all the time, uptight, overwhelmed, always in a rush, you name it. It seemed like my reasons for a day of thanks weren’t too many. Then homesteading happened to me. My husband and I decided to take on this lifestyle that resists stress. I read a quote by Van Gogh that says
“If you truly love Nature, you will find beauty everywhere.”
It couldn’t be more factual. If you come here often, you know I’m homesteading alone while my husband works a full-time job to support our overhead as we strive to decrease it. Being here alone can sometimes be, well, lonely. But being here alone has taught me to appreciate my time, to slow down, to love, forgive, accept, and appreciate every piece of matter in this life of mine. I’m thankful for all I have and truly wish for nothing more. I won’t tell you why I’m thankful for my friends and family, but instead, I want to tell you why I’m thankful for the “simple things”. These are things that are around all of us every day, whether we’re alone or not; things I never knew to appreciate before slowing down and noticing them. These are my reasons for a “day of thanks”.
There’s something about a morning, hot, humid, or chilly alike. A day that’s fresh and new, presenting itself to you to take it and do the best you can with it. There are so many quotes about starting a new day and how it’s yours to manipulate in the way you want to. Once you put those quotes into action is when the real magic happens.
After I started homesteading, I learned to love waking up in the mornings. Walking throughout the yard as all the different lives started to stir and checking off the morning chores one by one, was something I looked forward to the night before, even in the rain. I would laugh when the mornings came and the rain fell upon me. Once being something I’d run from, I found myself embracing the soaking wet clothing I wore…looking more laughable than a wet chicken. So with that, I’m thankful for the mornings and the variations of life and beauty it presents to me time and time again to learn, love, and grow from.
Oh, the birds. When I was a young girl I remember my grandmother bird watching. I thought it was so silly and boring to sit and wait for a bird; birds were never something I noticed, much less appreciated. After moving to our little slice of heaven here in Homosassa that all changed. Within the still of the morning, I started to hear calls and pecking.
We have three types of woodpeckers that visit our yard throughout the year, but my favorite to watch is the Pileated Woodpecker. They’re so large and scale up our pine trees looking for their next meal and once they’re done, they chase each other to the next one. I notice when the robins start coming back and I love the cardinals. Their songs quiet my mind and make my soul smile in a way unfamiliar to me with prior to noticing them. Birds move so quick, yet there’s a slow, swiftness about them. It’s lovely. If you’re looking for a reason to have a day of thanks, look no further.
You might think this one is silly. Why appreciate the wind? It cools me on the hottest days while I’m tilling the gardens, makes the leaves dance providing a percussion that wasn’t there before, and reminds me to be patient. The wind washes over me when I’m frustrated and reminds me to breathe. It’s all-encompassing, resembles life, motion, and pushes me to keep going. A day with no wind will help you remember why the wind is so beautiful. Noticing the wind will add to your day of thanks.
I have my husband to thank for learning to be thankful for sunsets. Some of my most wonderful memories are of us chasing the sunsets, trying to find the quickest way to witness the day slide away from us. Emerson will often countdown to see if he could estimate how quickly the day leaves us. My favorite part of the sunset is the moment after it leaves the horizon visible to your eye, wherever you are. The sky turns their hues of purple and pink and the stillness lingers.
I’ve tried to capture its beauty with a camera, and every time I fail it adds one more reason to be so thankful for the sunset. Not one of them is the same and it holds its own beauty. To appreciate the sunset in all its magnificence, you have to pay attention to it. Lend your whole self to the sunset as the sun lends itself to us and understand that it’s an honor to have the freedom to sit and appreciate something as small, yet so large, as the sunsets. You can not capture it, but you can come back tomorrow to see what it’s willing to bring. I suppose this one would be considered a night of thanks, but we’ll stick with a day of thanks since that’s the trend!
Time for the curtain call. I firmly believe the evenings are more still than the mornings out here on the homestead. In the evenings, the rooster gathers his hens into the hen house, the rabbits become more active, and the ducks tuck in near the pond in a uniform circle, one on the lookout at all times it seems. Every evening I walk the yard to make sure everyone successfully made it to where they need to be and all the gates are secure. I look up at the sky to see how many of the stars are joining me, sometimes I don’t need the flashlight because the moon is shining so fierce.
If you’re looking for a natural release, I invite you to walk outside after the sun has moved to another part of this world and look up at the stars. Close your eyes and breathe. Every night after making the rounds, I stand for a moment in the yard listening. Some nights I hear faint barking in the distance or a rabbit thumping its strong hind leg on the plywood. Other nights I hear nothing at all and those might be my favorite. There are so many reasons for a day of thanks.
What do you consider your “day of thanks” things? I’d love to know below in the comments! If you’d like to sign up for my email list, I send maybe 2-3 emails a month you know what I’m up to, and often what I’ve been thankful for. Go to my homepage and scroll down for the signup form!
Read “The Search for Simplicity: Farming for Freedom” next!