Totally frustrated after that, I shut down my computer, and decided to make a list of the things in our community for which I'm grateful. Almost immediately I thought of the two free turkey dinners for islanders. One is held at the Grange Hall on Thanksgiving Day with two business underwriters, four business sponsors, and volunteers from thirteen social service organizations. The other is held at the High School by a small group of people who have been doing this for 25 years. Two free turkey dinners in one week is a really good deal.
>Next, I thought about the Friday Harbor Food Bank currently serving 150+ households each week. Then I thought about a certain grocer we all love to hate who not only helped underwrite the Thanksgiving Day Dinner, but also donated 160 turkeys to the Food Bank (and that doesn't even take into account the many other events and causes he and his employees support)...
By now, my brain was warming up. I thought about the community gardens (both the St. Francis and the Seventh Day Adventist versions). I remembered our mostly volunteer county fair, various parades and community celebrations on other holidays, hospice volunteers, social service organizations, spaghetti feeds and fundraisers for those in need, and...well you get the idea.
So here's your challenge: make your own list. See how many things you can find for which to be thankful right here on San Juan Island. Send me your list. I'll add it to mine and ask my editor to publish it around Christmas. Then, if that gets you motivated, start a list of ways to solve some of the other difficulties we all seem to be facing. You just might discover something other than holiday emotions bubbling up.
- Can you focus on the positive around you rather than the negative?
- How do you feel when you do that?
- Does it spark other positive ideas?
- What are they, and how can you carry them out?