Sunday, December 18, 2011

{Monday} Moments: My Gift List

I was standing in the shower,
 eyes closed, hot water
cascading over my head,
down my shoulders and
beyond to the drain.

Something I carelessly
take for granted each
day, now suddenly 
in focus.

What a gift, I thought,
to turn a handle and have
this luxury, when others
in the world still have to
go to a well or a river
and carry their water home.

As I lathered the shampoo,
I pondered other gifts
that I had received on this
chilly morning.  My first 
gift of the day.

I'd awoken, sleepy in 
the pre-dawn, to attend 
a spin class.

Gift two:  great health, 
something to be thankful
for each and every day,
but seldom lauded until
it ducks and hides.

Back from class, I'd packed
lunches for my two kids.
As I spread peanut butter
and jelly, I smiled.

I was making lunches for
my healthy and happy
children that, at one time,
I was told were unlikely
to ever be conceived.

And I had two.

Gifts three and four.

While I was powering
through exercise class, 
my mama, visiting for
Christmas, was already
up and baking, and the
sweet smell of delicious
cookies greeted me as
I stepped through the
garage door.

And it occurred to me
that 100 years ago it
was doubtful that a
relative would travel
1500 miles for Christmas.
The ease of transportation
in modern times means
that we can hold loved
ones close, more often.

Gift number five.

Checking my e-mail, I
noticed a sweet comment
that a reader from Norway
had left for me earlier.  A 
new, lovely friend from 
across the globe.  

Gift number six.

Shower turned off and
embraced in my terry robe, I
considered all these gifts.

And it was only 8AM.

The rest of the day lay
ahead like an endless roll
of beautiful wrapping paper,
waiting to be filled with
more gifts, if I just slowed
down enough to 

I did.

Sweet tangerines from
Florida, nestled in a bowl
in this Midwest home, far
from the groves where
they were grown.

A text sent from a 
dear friend.

Electricity when the 
sun went down.  

A good laugh with 
my husband.

Precious gifts, 
each one.

My wish for all of you
in 2012 is a heart that
is open to receive all the 
gifts that are there, in your
own lives, every single day.

You certainly have been
beautiful ones, for me.

Merry Christmas 
with love,


PS: Please link up your
own special moments, 
below, or leave me a
comment about them.
I'd consider it a very
special gift : )


Phyllis said...

This is a lovely post :)

Alicia said...

this is precious, suzanne. i especially love the one about your mama traveling 1500 miles to you for christmas. we'll be alone this christmas...our first away from "home" after moving 1500 miles away in october. we're ok with being alone this year, but it's good to see someone else with a far away mama that comes to see her :) thanks for sharing your blessings.

June said...

Beautiful post as always Suzanne. Some days I hardly have room for all the gifts I am given. I am thankful for every one...every day.
sending hugs...

Marie said...

Another beautiful post Suzanne and a wonderful reminder of the blessings we take for granted each day. Merry Christmas to you and your family. xxoo

lisaroyhandbags said...

Beautiful post Suzanne. It's true - we have so many things to be thankful for, all those little details that so often go unnoticed. Your friendship has been a gift to me and I always smile when you leave your sweet comments. My warmest Christmas wishes to you and your lovely family. We're alone this Christmas but we'll be with our families in spirit. xo

doodles n daydreams said...

Merry Christmas to you and your family Suzanne. It's lovely your Mama is with you. What would we do without them?

Days at Buttermilk Cottage said...

At the top of the list of gifts is having the appreciation to realize all the gifts and blessings we have in our lives. The "overnight" butterscoth rolls you posted about last Christmas have been requested for Christmas morning again this year. I think you've started a holiday tradition at Buttermilk Cottage--one more wonderful gift!

Days at Buttermilk Cottage said...

At the top of the list of gifts is having the appreciation to realize all the gifts and blessings we have in our lives. The "overnight" butterscoth rolls you posted about last Christmas have been requested for Christmas morning again this year. I think you've started a holiday tradition at Buttermilk Cottage--one more wonderful gift!

Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

Excellent thoughts. Beautiful verse. Wonderful family, and you, a gift to us. think that on the 28th.....I will see you. THANK YOU for reaching out to me, Suzanne. There is most definitely MUCH to be thankful for!!!! Anita

Susan T said...

You obviously have the gift of being able to put into words what others think. For just a moment perhaps in our busy day we think how very lucky we are to have this or that, not really realising the steady succession of gifts throughout the day that make our lives so much better than some. We are blessed indeed.x

MaryBeth said...

Thanks for opening my eyes to the gifts all around me everyday. Trust me today I will e looking at everything a little differently. Merry Christmas!

Lisa @ Shine Your Light said...

You are beauty-full, my friend! So blessed, and a blessing (to me, your readers, your family!)
Merry merry Christmas week!

Claudia said...

What a beautiful post! Thank you for reminding us that we are blessed each and every day.


Sherri B. said...

Thank you for sharing your 'thankful' thoughts. I had a few of the same in my shower yesterday and today, just minutes ago, I was waving to my husband as he left for work and stood on the porch, thanking GOD for 'not feeling anything in my body'...meaning, I am well.

Farmgirl Paints said...

I love you girlie. Somehow you always make me look at everything a little bit closer. Did I spy an awesome new sconce? Looked great. Have a wonderful week with your sweet family. Merry Christmas.

Frizzy said...

Wonderful blessing each and every one of them! Merry Christmas from CA!

My vote is to keep the Monday Moments going in 2012. Unfortunately I could not vote as the poll had closed.

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for waking me up to appreciate the many "gifts" I, too, receive daily. What an eye opener. I am truly blessed with so many wonderful gifts. One of them just happens to be your blog. I discovered it just a few short months ago & I truly enjoy it. Have a VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS & a gift filled NEW YEAR!!!

Diane J./Ohio

pollydove said...

What a great way to start off this week! I love all of those "simple" yet profound gifts you shared ... sounds like an absolutely perfect morning to me, brimming with good things and lots of joy! Baking cookies first thing in the morning?! Perfect!

LISA said...

This touched my heart...thank you for this sweet post! May you be as richly blessed in the new year!

Teacup Moments said...

Suzanne, your generosity and inexhaustible positivity is a gift to ME. Thank you for writing and sharing. Wishing you and yours all the blessings of the season.

Jenny Schouten Short said...

I say amen to everything you wrote. You left out one thing...the gift of words with which you bless others...
xo Jenny


It is such a great thing when we have eyes to see the gifts around us. Thanks for sharing yours.


ps. I missed your poll, but I vote YES.

A Cottage Muse said...

After seeing my husband's Nana over the weekend who is 95 (his other Nana is 99) and hearing her tell how she is thankful for so many things each day as you are, I am going to be more aware of my blessings each day in the new year.
Thank you again Suzanne!

Linda said...

I learn so much from your beautiful, insightful posts, Suzanne...makes me look around with fresh eyes! My special moment was getting together with you this past week...I am so glad we are friends! Merry Christmas! XO

Sylvia said...

Thank you for the opportunity to share my moments here and I consider this as a gift that I will be blessed to have for a long time . Thank you for being aware and making us see all the simple things that make up a meaningful life , but we often overlook them . Stay happy and stay TRUE to yourself , Suzanne. You are precious !

Julie said...

Lovely! :-) Please keep doing the MOnday moments! love to read them. Wishing you a VERY Merry Christmas Suzanne...maybe a white one??????
Hugs and more hugs. so glad that you get to be with your mama. :-)

Low Tide High Style said...

I know I sound like a broken record, but thank you for another wonderful post Suzanne! We are very blessed to have all of those amazing gifts in our lives!

Kat :)

Jemsmom said...

Your beautiful posts always touch my heart and make me think. Thank you for reminding me to find the beauty and joy in the simple gifts around me. I wish you and yours the Merriest Christmas ever!

Linda in AZ * said...

*** Once again, dear Suzanne, you open your heart and express your feelings ever so beautifully...

You're so right about it ALL, and ESPECIALLY thanking Him for good health... we take it for granted, UNTIL we start, or have already lost, that wonderful blessing & life is never quite the same again...

Am sending warm holiday hugs (from AZ( where INCREDIBLY, it's COLD and RAINY and HAS BEEN for daaaaays!!!!! SHOCKEROO!!!)...

Linda in AZ *

Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

Good morning gorgeous!

OH THANK YOU for "getting it"!!!!! It was sure fun to write my post, for I truly felt the inspiration flow...and due to the lack of snow, it was a good writing prompt, but it turned out to be an exercise in metaphor! I AM LOOKING FORWARD TO THE 28th!!!! MUCH LOVE, Anita

Anonymous said...

Your post is a gift - taking the quiet moment to read this morning before the bustle begins - being in a retail business this time of year, it is easy to lose touch...must listen for the angels' voices! Thank you!

"Create Beauty" said...

Your post is so inspiring! To be thankful for all these blessings.

I read the book, "One Thousand Gifts" and became even more aware of the blessings that surround me that I am so thankful for.

Wishing you and your sweet family a very Merry Christmas!!!!
~ Violet

Designs By Pinky said...

I actually do thank God every morning for hot water when I am in the shower. It soothes my soul and lets me see all the rest of my blessings through the day. I am so glad your Mother is there with you. My son and sister who both live in Fl. will not be able to come for Christmas so I am sad about that but it will still be a great day with the rest of the family. Blessings to you, Pinky

michele said...

your post reminds me of a lyric we heard harry connick sing last night on broadway: ON A CLEAR DAY, YOU CAN SEE FOREVER AND EVERMORE. i so love a clear day when the blessings are in focus because we are seeing with the right eyes. you have such a gift for sharing your vision, suzanne. thank you for this.


Stitchfork said...

Such wonderful gifts to cherish Suzanne! Monday (and Tuesday) moment was driving for over 11-hours to retrieve youngest from college and finding radio stations that played Christmas music the ENTIRE trip!
Merry! Merry!
xo Cathy

Ivy Clad said...

Lovely and thought-provoking post! I have been enjoying the season by looking for the beauty of simple things everywhere I go.

Merry Moments to you,

The Devine Life said...

Beautiful post.

Simply Beautiful Now said...

Just discovered your blog from "The Enchanted Home". Love your writing...I wrote two posts this week on special moments/memories, so I thought I'd share both...hope you don't mind!

Merry Christmas!

Tricia said...

What a beautiful post, Suzanne. There are so many things in life that we take for granted. I think about that often, but probably not as much as I should. Hope you have a wonderful Christmas.

hugs ♥

Acanthus and Acorn said...

I love these posts! This is a gift, to be reminded of all the simple things that we can so easily lose sight of, especially in the hustle-bustle of the holiday season.
Merry Christmas!!!

Blooming Rose Musings said...

I was thinking along these lines yesterday when a group of us made over 1200 sandwiches to take to different shelters. I thought about how fortunate we are on a daily basis for all the gifts we probably take pretty much for granted. I think a simple smile from another person is one of the greatest speaks volumes without uttering one single word. I know I am very blessed in life and very thankful. Suzanne, this is another beautiful post.
Dear friend, I send warm wishes to you and your family for a very, very Merry Christmas. I am happy to hear that your mom is visiting, as well. I know the New Year will hold many special blessing for you all.
Merry Christmas. XO

T's Daily Treasures said...

Beautiful post! Wonderfully written. We didn't have water yesterday and boy does it halt so many things when you don't have it. I thought back on all the times my Mammaw would give us cousins a scrubdown with a soapy washcloth rather than everyone trying to take a bath. Thankfully our water tank is full today. Wishing you and yours the happiest of holidays. Tammy

Humlehagen said...

You toutch my heart all the long way to a nurse and personally, i have seen soo many times what a good health means in life- it is a gift!Thank you for sharing your thoughts,i look forward to your next post, it is a wonderful gift to me every week!I love your blog,it is so inspiring - thank you for writing monday moments! Merry Cristmas!

pretty pink tulips said...

I quickly can begin to list all the amazing gifts that I enjoy each and every day. Thank you for the gift of perspective and friendship...though miles away.

There are people who see the glass half full. But, I believe you are one of the lucky ones who see it as spilling over!

Merry Christmas, Suzanne!
xoxo Elizabeth

Tiffini Kilgore said...

i would expect nothing less than this from you.
i value your words you know?
they always bring me back to what really matters
i believe with all my heart that this coming year will be so rich and full of gifts...miracles if you will because we now have eyes to see them...
love you and a big hug

Lili said...

I'm so thrilled for you that your Mom is there to spend the holidays! There is no end to our precious daily gifts and I always love your reminders of gratitude for everything we must not take for granted! Merry Christmas dear friend! xoxo ~Lili

Roses, Lace and Brocante said...

Dear Suzanne

We are all so lucky to have you as a blogger and friend - your magical way with words always make me stop and think - you have a rare gift Suzanne - thank you for sharing it!

At Christmas time we all reflect on the what, why and who of the past year.
I for one, know I could have done things better and have made firm resolutions to address this in 2012!

Joyeux Noel to you and your family
Christmas hugs & love
Shane (in New Zealand) x

ps- Santa has already visited us in New Zealand several hours ago and is now on his 12,000 mile long journey around the world to see YOU!!!

Elizabeth said...

Merry Christmas! Blessings to you or the new year. What a beautiful post and a wonderful reminder that " it's the little things in life" that are the best gifts. A smile from a stranger on a bad day, a card from a friend across the miles, a call from my mom, and so many wonderful posts from wise, witty women like you. Your thoughtful posts have been a gift and a reminder to me on more than one occasion.

Thank you for your beautiful posts and your always kind comments.

Have a wonderful day and enjoy your precious family.


Indie.Tea said...

As I read your post on Christmas day, I feel doubly thankful for the blessings in my life. Thank you for sharing your beautiful thoughts.
And I hope you and your family are having a wonderful and very Merry Christmas.

patty said...

sweet suzanne.... my second link on this post... i hope you had a lovely holiday, full of more beautiful gifts, like those you mentioned above.
wishing you a happy, happy new year!

René said...

Well said as always Suzanne. The small things that we take for granted are truly gifts. I hope you had a wonderful Christmas.


quintessence said...

How lovely Suzanne!! Hoping you had a very merry Christmas and sending you very best wishes for a Happy New Year!!

koralee said...

Just popped in to wish you a very blessed 2012 dear have truly been a blessing to be all year long. I am so happy I got to meet you in person...what a gift!!! Hugs and love always.

Miss Gracie's House said...

I LOVE your have such a sweet way of writing...I don't get over here near enough...something I WANT to change in 2012~
Blessings to you this new year!

Jeanie said...

So many lovely gifts we have, we share. Most of the best aren't wrapped in paper, but love. Sending you lovely New Year wishes and much joy! So glad to have discovered you in 2011!

Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

Suzanne dearest!

I had such a wonderful time last week chatting with you! We must have talked for THREE HOURS!

I am so glad que la petite Genviève is sitting still and pretty in your tree!

OH, tell me how to link to your Monday party dear. I am so bad with knowing to do this! Do I send you a link?

ENJOY THE EVENING and yes, I am totally thrilled about July! So many ideas flying around! I have birds ON the brain!

HUGS! Anita

The enchanted home said...

Suzanne..this was just amazing! Oh my gosh, I so enjoyed it and you are so right its very easy to take the day to day luxuries for granted, but how wonderful that you reminded us all to realize how lucky we truly are for the simple things that so many are not blessed to have!
Beautifully said....wishing you all the best that life has to offer in 2012!

Whosyergurl said...

I love this post. Yes, so many gifts to realize and appreciate. I just had a crazy thought. Want to hear it? You were talking about your Mama visiting you...I was in BWI recently to visit my girls (I am there about once a month) and a lovely woman and I chatted...she was waiting to pick up her Mama...then I thought "wouldn't it be crazy if that was Suzanne?" It probably wasn't. But it is possible. :-)
Happy New Year! xo, Cheryl