1. Family somehow gains importance to us as we age. I have been especially thankful this week for our opportunities for involvement in the lives of family members: attending grandchildren's ballgames, helping in fundraisers for their activities, reading and commenting on the blogs of siblings and mother and daughter, talking with son and daughter about our mutual interest of public education, and hearing about events in the lives of far-away family members via email, working alongside husband in making home improvements, putting together jigsaw puzzle with grandchildren.
2. Aging frees me from many of the concerns that occupied and even burdened my younger years. I no longer try to impress others with material success. I no longer care much whether my clothes are fashionable or my hairstyle is perfect. I realize that whatever the current "must have" purse of the year is -- it will be joked about in a few months and will be filling the racks at Goodwill as people spend big buck on the NEW "must have." Meanwhile my very useful and respectable-looking black bargain from last year serves me very well, and that money I didn't spend on the purse is still in the bank and available to spend on something worthwhile.
3. Another realization that I appreciate this week is this: The complexity of interpersonal relationships will never be fully understood by anyone. What any one person says or writes is never understood by any other person in exactly the same way. We each interpret every event in our lives based on past life experiences and our own personal psychological needs. Realizing this allows us to suspend judgement of others. What a relief to accept people and their stated beliefs and their unexplainable actions without having to place blame or make judgments! What an improvement our society would experience if we could all just "assume good intentions" on the part of others.
4. Attending estate sales, as I love to do and did last weekend, helps put life and material things into perspective, too. When the person who valued those material belongings is gone, it is just "stuff" that has to be disposed of in some way.
5. I am reading, belatedly, a best-seller from a few years ago, Flags of Our Fathers. Oh my! My father was a Marine who fought in the South Pacific in WWII when I was a newborn. I never really realized what that meant or appreciated it fully before. Those boys (mostly 17-25 year olds) have not received the credit and appreciation they deserve. This non-movie-lover has been told that the Clint Eastwood-directed film based on the book was also good. If you have not read this book, I encourage you to do so. The book tells the story of the lives of the six men photographed raising the American flag on Iwo Jima in 1945.
6. I have an opportunity to earn some extra money next month.
7. We had a LITTLE bit of rain yesterday. We need much more, but at least we had a little. The drought in this part of the country has become quite severe.