My Gratitude For 2016 (Almost but not quite Camelot!)

(An illustration from an art book I made.)

Recently a priest gave me the penance in the Sacrament of Confession to spend a few minutes meditating and thinking with gratitude about all God has given me.  Of course I did my penance that day in church, but since I haven't spent much time blogging in the last year I thought I would write a little post about what I am thankful for from the year 2016.

Here are a few of the things I am grateful that happened in 2016.

1) I am thankful for fairly good health and that I am still alive and ticking and able to have yet another day, month or year to work out my salvation!  God is good!  Praise be God in His and angels and in his saints!

2) I am so thankful for my Guardian angel who is constantly reminding me to curb my appetites and willfulness.

3) I am so thankful for my peaceful marriage.  My husband and I have been married almost 20 years now.  I can't think of a time that we ever went to sleep at night in anger.  There has been very little strife in our marriage.  Oh, I have been frustrated at times and so has my husband, but these things never lasted more than a few minutes.  One thing I have discovered is that friendships can influence the peace in a marriage.  How important it is to have good, holy friendships!  Anyone who criticizes and finds fault in my husband is not my friend!  My heart is filled with gratitude for my husband.  If a disgruntled thought comes into my mind, I quickly dismiss it.  I no longer tolerate anyone or anything that disrupts that love and  peace in my marriage.

4) I finished a 30 page art book that was a gift for a friend.  This was a huge and difficult accomplishment for me because I am a procrastinator par excellence! This was a book of paintings and drawings of my friend's kitty.  The book was a thank you gift and my friend seems so thrilled with it.  Here is one page from the book where I found a place her kitty in the nativity scene.  My friend used this colored pencil drawing for her yearly Christmas card.

5) I am thankful for all of my friendships and family.  I am thankful for  the time I have been able to spend with my mom.  I never could have guessed that my mom would live with me and my husband.  I have had the opportunity to see how prayerful she is and to appreciate how she has enriched our lives.   I am thankful for my sister who has been like a wonderful, lifelong friend.  When I was seven or eight years old I remember praying that God would give me a sister.  He answered my prayer!

6) BRACES!  I am thankful for the braces on my teeth!  Ha! Ha!  I never expected to get braces and yet, God has been good!  I used to never smile.  I mumbled everything because I didn't want anyone to see my teeth.  My mouth was a mess and had been that way for most of my life.  Last year at this time I went to the dentist.  I had little cavities in difficult places to reach.  My teeth were so crowded.  It made me depressed because I could feel them becoming more and more crowded as time passed.  My dentist recommended braces and dental appliances.  My husband said, "Let's do it."  Well after nine months of wearing various appliances, I got braces in December.  About the middle of this month, January, lo and behold my front teeth are straight!!!  Yay!  I now go around smiling and laughing! (Oh, yes.  I still wear bracket braces.  Next stop:  Invisilign.)

7) I am thankful for the week my cousin visited us last summer.  We spent our days trekking through the woods and our nights catching up on our lives while enjoying the warm water in the spa. We rarely use our spa, but it was great to fill it up with water and make use of it.  I had not seen my cousin since she got married back in the 1980's.  She is a beautiful and sensitive person.

8) We were robbed in 2016, but even in this bad thing I can be grateful.  I give thanks because very little was stolen and we found out before much damage was done.  I am thankful that we know who did it.  I am thankful for the police who have taken an active interest in the robbery.   I am mostly thankful because the robbery made me pause and consider how worldly things don't really make us happy.  I have started getting rid of things.  There is a freedom in living with less.

9) I am thankful that I was able to visit my sister after Christmas.  We drove to Lake Huron which was frozen at that time.  I had never seen a frozen lake!  We also visited the Marshall Frederick's museum.  You might remember my post about The Cross in the Woods.   Frederick Marshall created the giant bronze image of Christ for that cross.  Here is a photo from the museum: 

 2016 for me was pretty wonderful.  It was almost, but not quite Camelot! Ha! Ha!
Thank you for visiting my blog. 
Please tell me what you are/were thankful for in 2016.



  1. I loved reading your gratitude list, Monica. Your words about your husband are beautiful. You even turned a robbery into something positive! I'm glad the person was caught!


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