Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Behind the Scenes

In loving one another through our
works we bring an increase in
grace and a growth in divine love.

~ Mother Teresa

I love our exterminator, Jerry.
He keeps our house pest free.
He always has a smile on his face.
He chats proudly to me about his
wife and their only child, a daughter.
He keeps treats in his pockets for
Gracie and the other dogs on his route.
I can count on him to come to our
rescue, even if it's not our regular
maintenance visit.  He makes us feel
like we are his most important customer.
I have an inkling that
 all his clients feel this way!
Thank you, Jerry.

I love our UPS man.
Although I'm not on a first name basis
with him like I am with Jerry, he probably
feels like he knows me pretty well.
Amazon packages.
Harney tea packages.
Land's End and J. Crew. 
Last Friday as I was pulling away
in the car, there he was, struggling
 with a big box and delivering it 
right.inside.the.garage.  Nice!
Thank you, UPS man.

I love my hairdresser, Kassie.
Kassie is so amazing that I plan to  
devote a whole post to her, someday.
She started working in a salon,
sweeping floors and folding towels
when she was 13 {shhh....}.  She toiled
to make her dreams come true and
opened her own organic hair salon
in her twenties.  Everyone leaves
her shop feeling a bit more educated
and a whole lot healthier.  And 
did I mention, prettier, too?
Thank you, Kassie.

I love our gardening fairy, Sandi.
Sandi is a friend of a friend who
helps me stay on top of our could-
nature yard.  She has an attitude 
as sunny as the days she works
in our yard.....even when those days
are not, in fact, so sunny.  Sandi
arrives at our house after putting in
several hours at her own, taking care 
of her horses and land.  I call her
our gardening fairy because she 
visits quietly and without fanfare
and it's almost like she's waved her
magic wand and the daisies and
ferns and black-eyed Susans march
to her direction.  Almost.  I know
that it is, in fact, hard, hard work.
Thank you, Sandi.

I also love Ana and Iurie {Yur-ee}.
Six years ago they left their home country 
for asylum here in the U.S. from
religious persecution; they are Baptists.
Every two weeks this energetic couple
 tackles the harder cleaning tasks 
around our house.  They have three 
children and this year their oldest 
graduated from our local high school 
with honors. They pay cash for 
everything and never go out to eat.  They
 tell me In America, if you are willing to
work hard, anything is possible.  
love their earnestness and the pride
they show in being American citizens.
Because they roll up their sleeves
and do the heavy lifting around here,
my job, especially, is much, much easier.
Thank you, Ana and Iurie.

Thank you kind lady who
rings up my groceries....and the
friendly gal at the hardware store
who greets my hubby by name....
Thank you men and women who
volunteer to keep us safe at home
and abroad.  Your works grace
my life every single day.

Thank you
 to all the other cheerful givers
I have had the great privilege to know
and befriend, quietly performing the tasks
 that need doing and doing them well.....
Not by taking center stage, but by gently
 playing in the orchestra pit of our lives.  
Without their measured beats in the 
background, life would be a lot 
less sweet.

So tell me, who are the 
cheerful givers
in the background



Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

Oh, such food for thought here dearest. Love is really the only force that will keep us together and sadly, it goes unnoticed daily. But yes, I do have many people that I LOVE for the small and BIG things they do for me, and that is RUBEN my husband. My students who always carve out another facet in my diamond in the rough every year (in a great way); I love my FRIENDS both in person and in BLOGLAND, for the kind words and gifts and I love my neighbors who always have a smile and a willingness to exchange one favor for another, or who just simple give. I love my life, for it is a gift like no other to have a soul that will never die. I love you dear Suzanne, for your insights are clear and profound and challenge us to respond. Merci mon amie....and on a different note, have you tried Archer Farms (from Target) tea, CHOCOLATE BERRY???????? Let me tell you, it tastes VERY SIMILAR to Harney and Sons PARIS...yep. Email me and I will send ya some:


LOVE ON!!!! Anita


How sweet to thank all the people who touch our lives constantly but with out much fanfare [except for the hairdresser....she gets plenty for covering my gray hair!]. I can't do without all of those same people and you are right, they always seem to be happy to be where they are. I need to remember to give them an extra smile next time.....

Shelly @ Life on the Wild Side said...

I absolutely love this post, Suzanne, because I feel the same way. I have a darling woman named Beata who cleans for me every-other week. Every time she comes I give thanks for her, literally. I am so grateful for her help. And then there's Rob, the guy who comes to take care of my dog when we're out of town so that Thunder doesn't have to go to a kennel. I am ever-grateful for him.

I've tried to teach my kids to be thankful for the people who help us every day as well. We could not run this busy household without them!

Tiffini said...

a list of thankfuls is a wonderful way to start the morning! right off the top of my head
my kids..my best Lisa..my hairdress - bless her heart I have so much hair who I have to visit this week:) all of my blog friends..and yes all of those who wait on us throughout the weeks at various stores and such and those fighting for our freedom at home and abroad..and those who fight for spiritual freedom as well!
feels like a Monday:)

Alicia said...

what a great post. unique, in that these are the people we forget sometimes. for me? my hair girl, shanna. my every-2-week cleaning lady, levina. babysitters :) thanks for making me think today, suzanne!

Mary said...

Oh, Suzanne, you brought tears to my eyes. I could really see each of these individuals that you honored with your thankful words.

So, my dear, I am so grateful for Suzanne, the Privet and Holly blogger. Suzanne lovingly shares her gift of words with us, saying what we wish we could say. Her writings are accompanied by her photography and soul-stirring music selections. I feel that Suzanne is on a journey that will take her far and we - dear readers - are along for the ride. I appreciate you, Suzanne, for sharing your heart with me.

lisaroyhandbags said...

I do miss some of my cheerful givers in Muskoka - honestly one of the friendliest places I've ever been. Now in Dubai I'll have to gather new givers - I did meet a lovely water delivery guy today...

Amy Arnaz said...

Good Morning Suzanne~
This post is SO valuable because our lives are supported and made easier by all those whom you mentioned from the UPS man to your exterminator. I love my UPS man (Jeff) and my FedEx girl (Zena) and the folks at the Post Office (Renee, etc) and the checker at our corner market (Janice) and the lady across the alley who helps me feed the feral cats (Mara) and my pool guy (Serapio) and my gardener (Jose) and.... on & on. I love the people who work so hard to earn a living and support themselves. I thank them every chance I get and bring them boxes of chocolate at Christmas. And then there is the whole group of people who work at night to clean & mop & Windex glass doors to make businesses presentable in the morning. Thanks to them too! xoxo Amy

Farmgirl Paints said...

let's see i have my grouchy sourpuss postal lady...who i've grown to adore. my hair lady brie, who makes me beautiful and i'm going to miss ALOT! the target girls. ugh makes me sad.

pollydove said...

Oh I love this post today! I feel the same way about so many of my friends who touch my life this same way. (Although I could really, really use my own Sandi.) I am in love with so many of my McDonald's workers since I see them just about every morning! One time I even tipped a little gal $10 because she is always so pleasant and sweet!

Thanks for all of your kind words to me over at my blog too Suzanne! (I soooo need to get my own zoom, don't I? And my daughter corrected me and said she bought the zoom separate from the camera at Best Buy.)

Grammy said...

Stopped by to comment on blooming where planted and found this new post. I too love my cleaning crew, most especially Ellen, who also stays with the dog when we are gone. My mail person always stops to chat when she has a package for me, which she delivers to the door instead of leaving it by the box on the road. But, the husband and wife who take such good care of my 93 year old Mother are the real angels in my life. Always smiling and so grateful for their life here in America. They are from Romania and love the freedom they experience here. Loved your post as always.


This post delights me, Suzanne, because I have long been a believer in "giving honor to whom honor is due."

This week I was deeply touched by some gigantic guys (looked like football players), that stood in the hot el (elevated train) stations in Chicago. They are called Guardian Angels. They volunteer. They have been showing up in force, to combat the flash mobs that have been robbing people in broad daylight in Chicago.

I passed two of them while my husband and I were on our way downtown to have dinner with friends.They stood like soldiers on duty.

I touched them each gently on the shoulder and said "thanks."


michele at hellolovelyinc said...

what a beautiful reminder, suzanne.

one of the most cheerful givers in my life is my pharmacist who calls out my name enthustiastically when i walk through the door. there is a unique intimacy one shares with their pharmacist, yes? and i instantly feel better when i am handed medicine for healing.

because of this reminder, i intend to offer the staff something special the next time I'm in.

you're lovely.


Deborah said...

Im thankful for the deareast people I serve evryday in the place where I work and how their smiles and sweet conversations; though short as time allows, bless me everyday.
It's the little things that really mean so much.
So much to be thankful for and so many whom we can bless on this journey.
Im so thankful for you too Suzanne..a bright ray of sunshine in my world!!
Have a great week my friend!

Deborah xoxo

Indie.Tea said...

What a lovely, lovely post! You are such a thoughtful person.
It reminded me of a young man who works at a pantry store. He always steps in and helps me, and recommends things, and we chat about desserts, salts, spices, and once, Heidi Swanson (of 101 Cookbooks). Last week, he gave me a few sprigs of fresh lavender :)
And I do like my hair guy, Chung, even if he raises his prices 10% a year - no one before he seemed to understand my hair. And he always asks about S, which just seems so thoughtful.

Low Tide High Style said...

Such a lovely tribute to the people in your life who make things just a little easier and more cheerful!

Kat :)

Carol@TheDesignPages said...

What a beautiful post. So often we forget to be thankful for all the people who make our lives easier. Great reminder!!

Frizzy said...

This is the 2nd maybe 3rd blog I've read tonight about giving thanks. I think someone is trying to tell me something.

THANK YOU for always giving us something to think about. It's never fluff but things that make me want to do better and be a better me for those around me.

Jemsmom said...

What an amazing post and makes you stop and think about all the people in our lives that we don't really take the time to say THANK YOU to. So nice!!!

A Rosy Note said...

Oh, what a happy and wonderful message for the day, Suzanne. My most cheerful givers are really more in the forground of my life...my parents. They help me immensely and usually with a smile :)

Blooming Rose Musings said...

The timing of this post is perfect because I was just talking to someone about this. I have so many people that I am deeply thankful for who over the years have helped me in so many quiet ways. So many people who have even just taken the time to smile at me and make my day brighter. So many people who have gone before me and opened the door so I may accomplish something that may have otherwise been out of reach for me. And so many people who make my daily life more enjoyable. Another magnificent post, Suzanne!

quintessence said...

I appreciate ANYONE who does their job well with a good attitude - and there are many of those in my life as well. Until my UPS man retired, almost all of my service guys (UPS, postman, garbage man and contractor - when we had one) were named Dave!! It made it so easy since names seem to be the first thing I forget!

Whosyergurl said...

When I was growing up- my Mama was a cafeteria worker. I know she taught me to be kind to everyone but I think especially because she was a "behind the scenes" person and then I taught my children to be kind to the janitor and the cross walk person and to always learn their name!
xo, Cheryl

Mona Thompson Providence Ltd. said...

A wonderful tribute to so many special people in your life. I'm willing to bet that each of these would have some pretty kind words for you as well. Thanks for making us all stop and think about the huge blessing that the people we encounter every day are to our lives. Mona

Lisa said...

Suzanne, you are such a beautiful person.....filled with gratitude for those around you. I am grateful for you and the words you write!

Natasha in Oz said...

This was a beautiful post. Thank YOU for sharing your thoughts about these special people in your life.

Best wishes,

Linda said...

This is such a nice post, Suzanne! Such a great reminder to express gratitude...Hope you had a wonderful 4th! XO

Happy Homemaker UK said...

We are slowly rebuilding our 'village' in England - it takes time to find the right fit. Sounds like you have a wonderful one :) XOL

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Ladeeda ~ my alter ego said...

You inspired me today. I will spend today (and hopefully all the days that follow) focusing on the small things others do to make my day to day existance grand. Thanks Suzanne!

Bringing Pretty Back said...

Thanks and gratitude. What love Suzanne. This was so touching and really made me think ... thank you.

Anonymous said...

Love this post-but please consider what kind of chemicals your exterminator is using to keep your home pest free. You might find that you can stay on top of it naturally yourself and save your health and a lot of $ taboot!

Michelle said...

Wow, it sure makes a WORLD of difference, when the people in your life, and around about your life, love and care about what they are doing.. and when we appreciate and care for them back!
How beautiful.

It adds such a richness and depth to life.
And it is funny that I used the word "richness" as I am surrounded by people with a lot of money. Both friends and family - some are millionaires. One is tempted to strive for this, and this alone. However, I am convinced that money (alone) cannot deposit such "richness" into one's soul as the positive, loving, human interaction found in your post. For surely this fills the soul, and makes one feel "rich".

Such a Beautiful post - as always.

Beautiful words of love and gratefulness xo

(I am running a little behind in reading your posts )

Patty said...

what a beautiful post of gratitude... i love my USP guy, too... he waves at me from across 4 lanes when we pass on the highway, and he's often accused me of being a UPS guy in cognito... as we pass so often around our small town! :)

Lili said...

Oh Suzanne I can tell how very grateful you are for everything and everyone in your life. It's so refreshing to come here as you always reinforce the positive things in our lives that many people may just take for granted! xoxo ~Lili