Today, I’m thankful for “snail mail”

My very dear friend (of 20 years!), who moved from NJ to PA a couple of years ago, dropped a card in the mail for me this week…it was just to say hi.  She could have called, texted, or sent an email.  She could have contacted me via facebook.  She could have used a number of electronic, quick ways to reach me, but she took the time to write out a card and mail it instead.

The card – mixed in with my bills and advertisements, sent through the mail, just because – made hearing from her that much more special.

So today, I’m thankful for getting a “just because” card in the mail, but mostly I am thankful for the dear friend who sent it.

~Melissa
The Jersey Girl

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Today, I’m Thankful for the Superheroes in My Life

By definition, a superhero is someone who has the ability to swoop in during times of greatest despair, when no one else can possibly help stop the dangerous and daunting trouble at hand, and has the power to single-handedly save the day.

No matter what mood I’m in, no matter what type of day I’ve had, and no matter how good I may already be feeling, my nephews always manage to make me feel even better.  They make me (yes, little ol’ me) feel like a celebrity when I walk into their house.  I’m the safest citizen in all of the city.

“Aunt Mimi’s here!” they shout, and faster than a speeding bullet, run toward me.  (Unless of course the Wii or the iPad are in use.)

I’m greeted by grins and hugs (charged with more love – and a million times stronger –  than the man of steel himself could give), and I’m informed about their adventures from pre-school, given demonstrations on how to play a favorite memory game, or shown a new toy train that “goes by itself.”  We count and spell, and they ask a million questions about what things are and what they mean and how they work…

It’s magic.

So today, I am thankful for my nephews, the superheroes in my life.

~Melissa
The Jersey Girl

Today, I am Thankful for My Brother(-In-Law)

Growing up with one younger sister, I often wondered what it would be like to have an older sibling.  Someone who would look out for me and set the example.  As my sister and I grew older, we became good friends and our birth order didn’t really matter much any more – we now look out for each other and, for different reasons and in different ways, we are each other’s example.

Still, from time to time, I find myself wishing that I had a big brother – someone, other than my parents, who I know I can turn to for protection or guidance, someone who I can trust is always watching out for me.  No matter how old we get, it is nice to have someone like that in our life.

(I don’t know if he knows this, but) for a long time after my sister got married, I referred to her husband as “my sister’s husband.”  It wasn’t really an intentional choice of words; it was just what made sense and seemed to fit the most.  He was a part of my life through my sister.  She was the thing we had in common, the person that connected us.

Somewhere along the way, however, a shift happened.  Maybe it was spending so many family holidays together year after year.  Maybe it was the birth of my nephews that brought all of us a little closer.  I’m not exactly sure when it happened, but I stopped referring to him as “my sister’s husband” and he became “my brother-in-law.”

This past weekend I found myself seeking guidance and needing to consult with someone whom I could trust.  I needed someone who was rational and logical, but who could also be compassionate and sympathetic.  I needed someone who cared more than a friend, and someone who wasn’t lecturing me like a parent.  My brother-in-law came through for me, and then some.

So today, I am very thankful for my big brother(-in-law).

~Melissa
The Jersey Girl

Today, I’m Thankful for Agreeing to Disagree

Sometimes you just know (deep, deep down in your core) that you are 100%, undeniably, absolutely right.  The person with whom you are speaking feels the same way – except that they believe they are the one who is right. The big problem here is you are in no way, shape, or form talking about the same things at all.

We’ve all been there, right?  Lately, it feels like I’m in the middle of these types of conversations a lot.

So today, I’m thankful for the wonderful people in my personal and professional life who do not always share my opinions, but do share and respect the idea that we can always agree to disagree.

~Melissa
The Jersey Girl

Paying it forward – Thankfulness

We know that when good ideas are identified, they are borrowed (or as great writers often say, just plain stolen)!

Today, I am “borrowing” a good idea that I came across on  CC Fowler’s blog, Central Jersey Working Moms.   CC is a working mother of two, she keeps her own blog, and contributes for Notes on the State of New Jersey.  I always enjoy reading her insightful posts, and was inspired by what she posted yesterday.

CC shared how she came up with the idea for sharing a reason to be thankful each day between now and Thanksgiving.  (She got the idea from a friend’s facebook status, who got the idea from someone else, who got the idea from someone else, and so on.)  It is a really simple, but beautiful idea. 

What struck me most about her blog post was that I know, from reading her blog regularly, that CC struggles with the “complaining” or “whining” types of posts that people put up on facebook.  And, while I do completely believe in freedom of speech and expression, I am right there with her in agreeing that we can do better and more meaningful things with our time and our words than complaining about the little inconveniences or frustrations in our lives.  Let’s be thankful instead.  How beautiful. 

Here’s the link to CC’s post.  I’m not sure if I will be able to write a new blog post each day about something I’m thankful for, but I will try…and I will certainly try to update my facebook status with something that I am thankful for. 

November 2, 2001 – I am thankful for CC Fowler because she shared her friend’s brilliant idea  via her blog and because she inspired me (and, I’m sure many, many others) to focus on the things we are thankful for this season.  🙂

~Melissa
The Jersey Girl