Thursday, November 26, 2020

Thankfulness in 2020


autumn tree

In this crazy year we call 2020, it is easy to find lots to complain about, but I would like to take a few minutes to reflect on those things for which I am thankful.  Won't you join me?

Family and Friends

I am very thankful for my family and friends.  During times when we couldn't get together we have family and good friends who have stayed in touch by phone call, texts, and emails.  At the beginning of April my husband and I spent 12 days in the hospital and we never missed a day without hearing from so many people that are near and dear to us.

Now that we are home, and our health is good, these friends and family continue to contact us.  When the weather was good and we could sit out on our deck with masks and social distancing our friends would join us.  We had several small groups gather and it was wonderful to see people.

My next door neighbor is working from home and we are able to take daily walks in the fresh air.  We often go to a park near our house.  I am thankful for Teresa.  Sometimes we bring our cameras and take photos along the way.

fountain grass and trees

bench surrounded by autumn leaves


I am very grateful for technology this year.  It has allowed us to connect in ways we otherwise couldn't.
  • We have live streamed our church services every Sunday on our TV and it has been a great comfort to worship in this manner.  

church sanctuary decorated for Christmas

  • Our church has increased online opportunities for Bible study and for prayer services.  They are available on Zoom, Facebook, and You Tube.
  • Zoom allowed us to have visits with our doctor while we were safe in our own home.
  • Zoom also allowed my photography club to meet so we could share ideas and connect with each other.  I had never used Zoom before and it has certainly been a blessing this year.
  • We also did a Zoom call with our family for my husband's birthday.

  • Books

    I have always enjoyed reading books, but this year I am particularly thankful for the opportunities that a book brings.  Here is a quote that I think is very fitting.

               Reading gives us someplace to go
               when we have to stay where we are.
                             Mason Cooley


    Hobbies are a wonderful thing to occupy your time.  I am very thankful for my hobby of photography.  It has certainly helped to keep me grounded this year and also to help me appreciate all that is beautiful in nature.

    I have had plenty of time to take online classes in photography and various software programs.  I have spent hours honing my skills and this has brought hours of enjoyment to me.  

    I have then taken the skills I have learned and visited "safe places" like my yard, my neighborhood, and nearby parks.  I am so thankful for all the time I have had to devote to my hobby this year.

    Here are a few of the photos that I have taken. 

    close up of ornament grass

    close up of red maple leaves

    autumn sky

    Today is Thanksgiving Day in the USA.  May you and your family have a blessed Thanksgiving.  May you take a few minutes to reflect on the things for which you are thankful.

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    1. May I take this opportunity to wish you and your whole family a wonderful, Blessed and bountiful Thanksgiving. You certainly have helped us to appreciate what is around us! Thanks for that Mary Beth!

    2. I am thankful for friends like you, Mary Beth, and your quiet and compassionate look at life no matter what the fates have in store for us. To find joy in the simple things like the sunset your camera captured, the birds in your backyard, the love of family & friends, is enough to go on with for this tumultuous year. Loved your book quote -- so true. Books allow us to travel anywhere without leaving our armchair. I've reread nearly my entire home library collection this year. :) Happy Thanksgiving to you and Ray. Thank you for this thankful and peaceful moment.

    3. This has, indeed, been a difficult year. Celebrating Thanksgiving will certainly be unique today, but I love your attitude! We do need to focus on what we have to be grateful for and to use those workarounds like Zoom to stay in touch with loved ones. Wishing you, Ray, and your entire family a wonderful and joyous Thanksgiving. I am grateful for you and our friendship!

    4. Thank you so much for sharing this beautiful reflection on the many blessings for which you and Ray are grateful this Thanksgiving. Wishing you and yours a wonderful day, Mary Beth!

    5. I've always enjoyed your photos and the way you use them to share your thoughts and experiences with us. You have selected some lovely ones to share today. Like you, I've been especially thankful for Zoom. It makes it possible for me to connect with long distance family even more than I did before the pandemic locked us in. Now we meet every week to watch our family's new baby grow up. It's the best hour of the week. Our Bible study group also meets on Zoom. Our church live streams on YouTube. So I, too, am thankful for this kind of technology. HOpe you had a wonderful Thanksgiving.

    6. We have so many things to be thankful for though at moments life is tough. Thanks for the reminder to keep our chins up!

    7. The positive side of the nightmare side of 2020 is how many of us are focused on being grateful for each other. It's been such a hard year, for some more than others, and counting blessings is the way to get through it - being thankful for simply breathing and loving the ones we're with. I have to say, when covid is over I'm looking most forward to heading back to our church. To sit for an hour and enjoy peace, and a gathering of souls who simply want to better their spirit - awe, that's what I miss too.

    8. This year has been difficult and challenging in so many ways for people. I love that you are choosing to take time to focus on what you have to be thankful for. Thank you for reminding us to take time to reflect on our blessings in these strange times. I love your photographs and the joy you have in taking them :)


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