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Thursday, November 27, 2014

50 Reason to Give Thanks

Simply because I can, and in no particular order.

I am thankful for:
  1. The small physical challenges I have, because they are in fact small and because they serve to remind me that our bodies are not to be taken for granted.
  2. The Beatles.  All You Need Is Love.
  3. My cat JeanLuc and his step-brother, Tiger.  Cats remind us not to take ourselves so seriously, mainly because they never take us very seriously.
  4. My home office, which may not be Superman's Fortress of Solitude or the Batcave, but it is never the less my place.
  5. The gift of being able to continue my education.  It's one class at a time, but so far I've had outstanding instructors and I'm managing to learn some stuff.
  6. My past, as it was my path to today and because it serves to chart my future.
  7. Emily Dickinson, who was Emo long before there even was Emo, and who reminds me all the time to seek beauty in simplicity.
  8. My job, which supports me and mine, and which provides me with a purpose in life.
  9. An inquisitive mind, which has served me well.
  10. Kittens, because they are one of the best antidepressants out there.
  11. Dr Hunter S. Thompson, who was the first to teach me that being a little weird is, in fact, okay.
  12. Dunkin Donuts, for their version of the Cronut.  It's darn good and well worth the 300 calories (once in a while).
  13. The Keystone Rescue Mission Alliance for all the  good that they do and the honor that I have in supporting them in a small way.
  14. Rebecca Albert, for always allowing me to  call her "Stinky" (despite being 21 years old) and for being the hardest working person I know.  I love you Stinky!
  15. Every clothing manufacturer that makes the size Extra Large Tall.  Words can not describe how frustrating it is to wear a shirt that is too short or being forced to wear a shirt that is too wide.
  16. Sylvester Stallone, for making the Rocky movies.  I don't like fighting, but I love stories of individuals who beat the odds.
  17. Christine Elizabeth Rivers, who is a gift from God to me. Here's to the second half of our lives together.
  18. A&W, for making the best diet Root Beer on the planet.
  19. The gift I have to not hold on to anger or bitterness.  
  20. Militant Right Wing Catholic Radio, for entertaining and enraging me.  We all need to listen to ideas and opinions we may not agree with from time to time.
  21. My coal stove, which requires effort to produce heat.  There is something noble about having to actually work for something, be it a paycheck or warmth in the winter.
  22. Everyone who does not call me "Albert".  I really don't like being called by my last name.  Just saying.
  23. The health professionals who keep me running, including Dr James McKenna (my family doctor) and Dr Jan Charnitski (my dentist).  I am grateful to have healthcare professionals who are both extremely competent at what they do and also honest with me.
  24. Korin Albert, who is one of the smartest people I know, and I'm  not just saying that because she is my daughter.  I love you Korin!  Be careful up in Amherst!
  25. Photography, which I thoroughly enjoy, even if I don't get to do it very much.
  26. My sister Michele and the fact that technology has allowed us to reconnect.
  27. Gary, my brother Rich's dog.  I'm not a dog person (see #3), but Gary is just about the happiest, most uplifting and wonderful creature ever to walk the Earth (on 4 paws), and I know he brings my brother real joy.
  28. God.
  29. Boston Mint Tea, the greatest mint tea on the planet.
  30. High quality socks. There is a world of difference between cheap and high quality socks, and they are a worthy indulgence.
  31. Katrina Albert, who lives her passion for helping children and young adults. The best spot in life is to paid to do what you love while also making a difference, which is what Kate does every day. I love you Trini-Bug!
  32. The ability to express myself in writing. I simply couldn't survive without the ability to describe what I feel, hear and see around me.
  33. Mr Rogers, who continues to impart simple wisdom. 
  34. My religious upbringing, which has helped form me. To get to here I needed to go through there.
  35. My brothers, with whom I experienced so much with while growing up.
  36. The gift of temperance.
  37. My co-workers, both now and in the past, who always see more value in me than I ever see in myself.
  38. My Mom, who taught me much by example, even when that example was an unintended "don't be like me".
  39. Berkeley Breathed, for creating Bloom County.
  40. Saturday morning routines.
  41. The family of Ms Rivers, who from the very first introduction have treated me so very well.
  42. The gift of empathy.
  43. Living in the United States of America, which represents the very best and worst that humanity has to offer.
  44. The clarity of thought that comes with growing older. 
  45. The ability to laugh, sometimes at the dumbest of things. It doesn't take much to entertain me.
  46. Those who have taught and mentored the professional me over the years.  My first "real" manager was a housewares buyer named Tina Veverka, who was incredibly kind and patient with me.  Since then I have worked for some great people, up to the present day.
  47. All those who serve now or who have served our country in the military.  We have because they gave.
  48. A (mostly) positive attitude, which I firmly believe is the greatest attribute anyone can have in life.
  49. Daniel Goleman, Melody Beattie, Daniel Pink, Brene Brown, Gordon Livingston, Tal Ben-Shahar, Jim Palmer and countless other authors who have written books that have helped make me a thoughtful, better person, be it personally or professionally.
  50. Everyone who reads this blog, be it once or repeatedly.  I am honored that you have let me share small snippets of my life with you over these past 6 or so years.  

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