Bring On The New Year – With Gratitude!

Happy Friday, All!
Yet, a simple and warm T.G.I.F. may suffice!
Simplicity is a theme that a lot of people get all “worked up” about.  Have you noticed those folks … it’s a kind of “lost” energy … who, no matter what you say, they want to “complicate it”?  There must be someone in their brain saying, “Let’s confuse the shoes off of this person because I don’t know what I am doing anyways!”  “Ha!”, a la Armond Hill, former roommate at Princeton and teammate on the Freshman Tiger’s men’s basketball team there for a year.  I just ask myself, “Why?”  Have these people ever heard of having “gratitude” instead of being a bold faced liar and a pure idiot at heart?!?  Harsh, right?!  I just don’t need these people’s burdens and negative energy in MY life!  “Straighten up and fly right, fool!”
Here in Puerto Viejo where I will be spending my second “Christmas Day” since I moved here ON “Christmas Day” one year ago, I met a wonderful … even cool Canadian family!  They live in Canada but have “Jewish” and “Middle Eastern” roots with a cute little “mixed” daughter!  They are away now for the Holy Days spending time with their families back in Canada … Toronto to be exact!  Stu Silverman and his wife, “Zoee” along with their 6 going on 7 year old daughter, Amira, have become like a “family” to me.  We live in the same house that is located within the property of Jacaranda Hotel and Jungle Garden – they are on the first floor of the multiple unit house and I am on the third floor though the opposite side of this house.  I experience a most incredible view from the third floor of this place and we see each other daily.  Stu has “coined” a celebration that he, his family and friends call “Gratitude”.  It is celebrated for 9 days starting with December 16th, I believe.  Each day, a person states (writes, thinks) of things that they are grateful for in their life, ponders it and shares it with close friends and/or family.  I like the idea a lot, not to mention, that I thrive on having gratitude …  In other words, I PAY ATTENTION to the things that I know that I should be grateful for … and not look for MORE!  Each day, a participant thinks of the same number of things to be grateful, culminating in “9 things” on the “9th day”!  Gratitude is a feeling that is initially very humbling, yet empowering in the long run.  Those things that we are “grateful for” become our “treasures” … we honor them!  That’s empowering, especially when someone “challenges” your gratitude for these things (people, places or things!).  I haven’t written anything down because my head is still spinning from all the things that I have been “thinking” about being grateful – it’s a lifestyle for me!
Well, I am grateful to be alive today, grateful to be able to care for myself with my physical challenges, and grateful for the “hutspa” to meet these and any other challenges “head on”!  Boom!  With peace and love, mehopes!  In my contemplation of things to be grateful for, I realized that I have to make an “amend” to someone that has been years … decades … in the making.  I am very grateful to have one child, Ayanna Lynne, who now has her own little “bundle of joy”, my ONLY grandchild – Caleb Isaac!  This is a “powerful” time of year with the Winter Solstice hovering in the universal elements.  With the energy of the full moon, it seems, I am anticipating more “spiritual flow” than ever!  What about you?!?  Do YOU have anything that you are grateful for today during these “Holy Days”?
Love you guys … and thank you for reading!  Happy Holy Days!

John I. Cook, Director

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