Thankful for things big and small


Many of the things for which I am thankful are materialist, commercialized even. The Dollar Tree tops the list. For a measly dollar and seven cents, I can find almost anything. Because my belt had been lost and my weight loss affected my pants to the point they would scrunch down my bottom, I scrounged in this store to find a replacement. No belts in sight, however, there were many lovely dog leashes, one of which perfectly fit me around my waist and even matched my outfit. A new phase of belting was born! There are only a few places where a $5 bill excites my granddaughter, and shopping at the Dollar Tree is one of them. If given an extra thirty-five cents for tax, she can pick out five exciting items. The glitz of a rhinestone crown, glamour of designer-like sunglasses, artistic quality of markers and a coloring book, and gastric pleasure of gummy bears is enough to thrill any young girl.

I am thankful for Amazon Prime. Many years ago, when Francis’ daughter was born, he started using Amazon Prime. Because of his vision impairment, Francis does not drive, so ordering things online became his standard method of retail purchasing. Need diapers? They came the next day. AAA batteries? The next day they showed up in his mailbox. I, of course, was mortified at the time because it seemed like such a waste of resources to get one little box packaged and mailed for no extra charge. Then came the day when I used up my last stitch of deodorant. Working long hours, the thought of running into a store depressed me. Aha! Amazon Prime! I ordered deodorant, along with another ten items so as not to frivolously use the US postal service, and the next day it showed up in my mailbox.

As delightful as gastric delights are, my wallet is more discerning. I am thankful for Wendy’s. For $4.44 I get a junior bacon cheeseburger made to my liking, chicken nuggets with sweet and sour dipping sauce, hot, crispy French fries, and my favorite Diet Coke. Eating there, I am almost as excited as my granddaughter shopping with her five dollars at Dollar Tree.

I am thankful for creative shows on channels such as Netflix and Hulu. A forty-five-minute show takes forty-five minutes to view, not an hour over-loaded commercials. “Little Fires Everywhere”, “The Crown” and episodes of “Whose Line is it Anyway” grace the television screen in front of which I sit. Pure relaxation and escapism. The only problem, Hubby repeatedly tells me, is that there are no commercials during which we can smooch. If only I could turn my head away from the crazy antics of Colin Mochrie and Ryan Stiles…

Of course, my appreciation for the Dollar Tree, Amazon Prime, Wendy’s, and premium cable stations is frivolous. It is just a way of making light of being thankful. Seriously, I join everyone else who is thankful for family. My children, of which I am proud, are no longer children, but adults with their own families and significant others. My children who are adopted have overcome their initial traumas and have made their way through life thus far, (“knock on wood”.) Francis, my oldest son, inherited my brains and Hubby’s looks and fortunately not the other way around. Responsible for designing accessible products for individuals with disabilities, he continues to make his way up the chain of command at an infamous computer company in Cupertino. He has his own family for whom he is thankful, and the appreciation just goes on and on, generation after generation.

Perhaps the best family quote is on the wall art recently purchased from Kohl’s. “Being a family means you will love and be loved for the rest of your life, no matter what.” For that I am thankful.

life, matters, column


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