Thanksgiving: Top 10 Things I’m Most Grateful for Today

mehobbies & me time

My house is quiet. It's dark outside. I'm jet lagged. I woke up at 3 a.m., hopped online, and started seeing a flurry of gratitude-related tweets and Facebook status updates. Yay! Thanksgiving has arrived! I jumped in the online chatter, replied, sent out my own thankful text, and then sat back. I reflected on 2010 and what has made it a tremendous year. I have a lot to be thankful for.

10 Things I Appreciate Most About 2010

I'm grateful for...

1. Relationships. I am most grateful for my family, my friends, and all of the wonderful people that add such beautiful color to my world. Thank You!!!

2. Basic needs. Having just visited India where so many struggle to have their basic needs covered, I am grateful that I have food, shelter, clothing, medical care (even if at a high price), and other basic things.

3. The future. I am grateful that I have a knowledge of what the future can hold (or even a glimpse at the possibilities) and have hope in a brighter tomorrow while at the same time being grateful for all of my sunny todays.

4. Different cultures. I am truly thankful to have been able to see and experience as much of the world as I have, recognizing how connected we all are and that our differences are interesting and unique, but that our similarities are truly what bond us, making us one people.

5. Leaders. I want to bow down and kiss the feet of the many people causing change in the world through their leadership, sacrifice, and passionate devotion. Whether they are rescuing children from child labor and slavery, ensuring villages have pure water, raising wonderful children, or simply being a kind friend, they make the world a wonderful place to live.

6. Personal growth. In Gretchen Ruben's The Happiness Project, one of the definitions she gives for happiness is growth and I'd agree. I've grown a lot this year. Some of it hasn't been pretty or easy, but it's been awesome and the evolution feels great! The good news? There's always room for more change.

7. Health. Four years ago, I had a serious accident and found myself in the hospital a couple of weeks before Thanksgiving. Just as I came out of the woods from that, I got pnuemonia—right on Thanksgiving day. I am really grateful that both me and my family are in good health today. I'm also grateful that some of my friends who have experienced major health issues this year are alive and kicking and well on the way to mending!

8. Mustard. Weird one, I know! I saw this huge field of mustard plants in India—vibrant and beautiful. I thought of the scriptural references of the mustard seed and how faith starts as tiny as a seed, but grows and grows as you give it room to do so. When I say I'm grateful for mustard, I'm really saying I'm grateful for faith and for the knowledge that faith leads to hope and peace.

9. Baby steps. Sometimes, when we become aware of issues—whether in our personal lives, with members of our family, or global causes—feeling the need to resolve the challenges can be overwhelming. I have an insatiable need to find solutions to everything, so changing the world right around me let alone the world at large keeps me up at night. I'm grateful for the small and simple things I can do everyday to impact change and make a difference.

10. The Mom It Forward Community. I appreciate all of the people who make up this fabulous community—from the people who participate in our weekly #gno Twitter parties, to those who contribute posts to the website, to those who chat with us in our forum, to those who participate in blog tours and live events, to the many who joined us for our first Evo Conference this year, and to the agencies and brands who partner with us on fun and meaningful opportunities. You are all helping to change the world one mom at a time!

What are you most grateful for today?

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An active part of the Mom It Forward team, Jyl primarily writes about parenting, social good, and all things travel related. In a past life, Jyl was an award-winning copywriter and designer of corporate training programs for Fortune 100 companies. Offline, Jyl is married to @TroyPattee; a mom to two teen boys and a beagle named #Hashtag; loves large amounts of cheese, dancing, and traveling; and lives in the beautiful Rocky Mountains. Topping her bucket list is the goal to visit 50 countries by the time she's 50.

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