30 Day Gratitude Challenge Days 25 and 26: Expressions and Small Things

Hey guys!

I took a break yesterday from blogging to do what many did — which was Black Friday…now for the most part, let me explain the tradition of Black Friday for me.

Most people may start Thursday night or early Friday morning, and for us (family and I), we aren’t the let’s wake up early and go conquer the sales at each store. In fact, we’re the more mellow, laid back type and we’ll look and see what’s on sale, and we’ll buy just that — what’s on sale that we need or is worth the price. The craziness of people shopping and what we see on the news or what’s on video these days is quite ridiculous so…we start later in the day and we’re honestly out for like…a few hours. Even as kids, I think we started at like noon or 11…which was usually when things were sold out. It was disheartening as a kid when you don’t get to purchase that DVD, but honestly, it was a life lesson that you don’t get to get everything in life, especially Black Friday. Now that I’m a lot older, for me it’s ehh…I didn’t get it..whatever, I’ll wait.

We did do a lot more online surfing, I feel like. We checked deals out earlier via online, and like others, I find that it had its convenience. However, it also made me do a double take at times. As convenient as it was, I do know that online holiday shopping or Black Friday shopping does in fact affect the physical stores. My dad recently told me that several Macy’s stores including in San Francisco, the Men’s department, which traditionally have been separated from kids and women’s is closing. So part of me, when it comes to online shopping, which I did, don’t get me wrong, but it made me think about those who are hired at the stores…..and then I started thinking about what’s today — which is Small Businesses shopping day; where instead of simply shopping at larger stores, you shop at the mom and pop stores in your area or where ever you are going out for the day.

Anyway, just a small discussion about Black Friday. I didn’t get much this year, but I did get a few beauty items that I thought were worth it. A lot of the items I got are back up items that I needed such as brushes (my flat top is on its last leg and recently my ELF tapered brush went kaput on me…), I bought a few tinted lip balms, and recently I had a bad eczema flare up, so I had to buy some lotion for that. If you want to know some of the new make up I purchased, I can share that, I recently acquired a few items that I wanted to buy and am really liking so far. One of them was so expensive that I can’t believe I bought it…but I had been eyeing it for 3 years now…so, I that was my splurge (LOVE!!!)

Ok, sorry for the disorganized blog post here…I think food coma from left over Thanksgiving food is kicking in…which means I will be making some coffee soon…but, I wanted to do days 25 and 26 gratitude prompts because I wanted to really finish out the 30 day challenge strong.

Day 25: What form of expression are you most grateful for?

For yesterday’s prompt, I was trying to be observant of what people were doing while shopping, and also for myself, what’s the form of expression that I am most grateful for. It may seem simple, but I’m actually thankful for laughter. Yesterday, while shopping, it was late at night, and this father and son was out in a plaza, while mom was shopping probably, and the two were playing tag. There wasn’t very many people out at that time, and just seeing the two run around and laughing, it was so joyful to see that. It was refreshing. That was probably a highlight for me of the day, because it reminded me of how many smiles and laughter I saw during the day. Honestly, Black Friday shopping, some take it to a level that I’m like ‘Whoa…homey…homeslice..CALM DOWN….No TV is worth fighting for.’ But for me, to see this father and son duo laugh, chase each other and using various cement blocks there as “home bases” or “safe” places for tag was just fun. It was awesome to see that. So for me, this sight was something that I was grateful for, and it made me think of this form of expression. Simple, but when a story or highlight of the day helps seals that form of expression, for me, that makes it so much more significant.

Day 26: What small thing that you use daily are you grateful for?

For today, what is the small thing that I use daily that I’m grateful for. Now, I’m really going to go back to the basics here. Before technology became such a significant part of my life, and even so many others, the one thing that I’ve always used, to this day, without fail, is this — paper and pencil. When I started this 30 day challenge, I talked about simple things such as the ability to see or touch for textures, but as we’re rounding out the 30 day challenge, and as I’m watching YouTube Videos on things like how to decorate a planner with stickers (I wish I were honestly a crafty girl…and unfortunately, as much as it may be fun….I am not one to be a consistent crafty person..I can get crafty, don’t get me wrong…but to actually be crafty in such a way…sorry, not that kind of person). Essentially, it made me think about paper and pencil. Some of the laugh till your stomach hurts moments are some of the things I’ve found over the years that my sister and I wrote as a kid. We wrote stories and we said some crazy things. Old diaries are the most hilarious things. While these days, a lot of my handwriting moments are for work or on post its, I thought it was interesting that when I went back to the basics, back to the simpler things in life, paper and pencil (or pen) are things that I actually am grateful for. Besides bringing back funny memories, I do think that it’s something that we take for granted a lot of times. Whether it’s writing in a planner, signing something, or whatever it may be, the capability to write is such a small thing that’s worthy of recognition. The science behind it is amazing, I mean just think — there’s dexterity, utilization of the musculoskeletal systems, cognitive function, thoughts, and it’s quite amazing…even one’s preference of pencil vs. pen or type of paper, all of that is significant. So much for something so small right? However, that’s what makes this gratitude challenge so interesting. You can always come up with something. But to delve more into the notion of something small that I use…it makes you appreciate things more…I know at least for me, that’s what I find when I actually sit down, pause, and write out what it is that I’m grateful for.

So there you have it guys! For those who may be shopping today, stay safe, don’t go crazy, and don’t forget that those who are working..they’re people….I’m so surprised by how as consumers we can be the meanest people ever — I was told by someone that they had money thrown at them, and for them it felt so demeaning. Workers are human, they’re working, they’re just as tired as you if not more because they started earlier than you….so for all those who are shopping today…be nice…smile, and thank that barista, that cashier, that worker helping you…they need that just as much as you do too.




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