Welcome to Project Real Life REDO, a project to re-start the (closed and finished) Project Real Life Workshop with some friends. Project Real Life was a 4Expert course by by Becky Higgins I took care of Big Picture Classes. I’m documenting the class prompts and then I’ll include them in my Project Life.
Week 5 was all about Living in Gratitude. For me, living in gratitude is not just about being grateful for what I have. It’s about recognizing the privileges I have; the good parts of my life that have happened as a result of luck of birth instead of what I’ve earned. This week, I’ve been reflecting on how I can use that privilege to help others that aren’t so lucky.
Living in gratitude, for me, is also about living life fully. Not every bad situation can be turned around by an attitude adjustment, for sure, but thinking of the big picture and realizing how darn good things are can really help me get out of a funk, and can help me to appreciate the little things that could otherwise slip by.
Here’s what I documented for week 5:
Person: This little man. I am so grateful to spend the majority of my days snuggling and chasing Jonas. Sure, he’s exhausting. He’s a mover, and he’s always on the go. Always getting into things. Often testing the waters as he learns the lay of the land (and what he can get away with). But he is so full of life, so curious, and so full of love and empathy. I love watching him learn and grow, turning slowly from a crazy little toddler to a tiny person with his own opinions. I am thankful for a financial situation that allows me to spend these days with him, even though it means that we’re working long hours and that the budget is tight at times.
Place: City Market Coffeehouse. I miss living across the street and visiting daily, but it still feels like a second home when I go once or twice a week. It’s a place where everyone knows my name. It’s a place for connections, for making new friends, for writing and generating ideas, and, of course, for drinking amazing coffee.
Health: I am thankful to have a big, amazing farmer’s market here in the city. Not only does it allow us to buy fresh, more nutrient rich food, but it also encourages us to center more of our meals around produce.
Invention: I am so thankful for computers. They give Jake and I livelihoods we both love. They allow me to connect with amazing people all over the world. They’ve put endless amounts of information at our fingertips. They are magic.
Thing. Coffee. I love the taste of it, I love the boost of caffeine in the mornings, and the times in my life I had to give it up were very cranky, sleepy times. I’m thankful to have a fancy coffee grinder my great aunt and uncle gave to me before they moved to Florida, so I can brew fresh cups each morning. I’m thankful to have access to high quality coffee that supports my moral values. I’m thankful to get to start each day with something I love.
Skill. Like every parent, I’m not confident in myself 100% of the time. But I know I’m an amazing mom. I worry that I let the kids watch too much TV. I worry that Jonas isn’t eating balanced enough. I worry that I’m not spending enough one-on-one time with Eliza. But this weekend I got a ton of affirmation. When I worried about television while talking to my mother-in-law, she pointed out that I’m always doing fun things with the kids, and she knows because she watches the progress on Instagram. (Instagram is the highlights and doesn’t generally show the stressful stuff, but she’s right.) I had a stranger and a friend marvel at my patience this weekend, as Jonas was crazy in public and I stayed calm and positive to turn things around instead of freaking out. I don’t always feel like a patient mom, but I realized that I am the majority of the time. I’m grateful for my skill as a parent, I’m grateful for others seeing those skills when I’m in doubt, and I’m grateful that I can be a parent at all.
Check out the rest of my Project Real Life posts.
If you’re doing a Project Real Life REDO too, head over to Document Life Workshop to link-up and to see what Allie and Alissa are doing!