Friday, September 10, 2010

I'm thankful for...

Most nights, we ask our children, "what are you thankful for?" Unfortunately, our children have a tendency to whine, complain and generally gripe about a lot of things. Ever since Dora was about 2, we've been trying to uphold this practice, with the hopes that expressing gratitude might eventually help them to truly be grateful people.

I'm feeling the need to practice a little gratitude tonight. So here are the ten things that I'm thankful for today:

1. George. Our cat. Who knew that he would be such a source of entertainment and affection. And as I type, he is knocking things over in the kitchen.

2. An invitation! I got an invitation today! To what, you might ask. I don't know! But a fellow parent at the school invited me to something tomorrow at 4:00 pm somewhere by Avenida Nossa Senhora do Carmo. Thankfully I have her phone number, and I do know her name. That always helps.

3. Help. I am SO grateful that we have help that comes 3 days a week to iron, clean the floors (a dream come true!) and watch the kids so I can go grocery shopping alone. This is a huge gift.

4. Compliments. I got two compliments on my Portuguese today, and one yesterday! Dora's teacher said that she could understand me (somewhat) now, as opposed to not at all at the beginning, and some fellow parents were impressed as they overheard me at the school tonight. Here's to not studying!!

5. Pipoca. Pretty much every night at school we buy popcorn. It's the best R$1 we spend all day, because it helps make a little 3 year old so happy.

6. Caffeine. Be it coffee, chocolate or coke zero (no diet coke here), I'm thankful for tasty artificial stimulants.

7. Blog and internet connections. Yesterday I got to chat with a woman who is considering moving here. She got my email from a friend, and found my blog. She brought me peanut butter, chocolate chips, a new tee shirt, and two outfits for Bea. And I got to talk to an adult for 45 minutes yesterday, and be called her "hero". Wow.

8. English students. I really like teaching English. Especially conversation classes. It's a little bit therapy, a little bit of teaching (which means I have to crack open the grammar books myself), and a lot of fun. And I get paid. And I have great students.

9. The yellow trees that are blooming.

10. The taxi driver that only charged me R$2.35 for a R$5.20 ride. He didn't have any change for my R$20 (huh?), so I just gave him all my coins. Taxi rides to school make everyone happy, but seriously discounted taxi rides make mamãe very happy. So happy that she buys herself some #6 without feeling any guilt.

There you have it! And I feel better too!

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