Being grateful

I woke up at 4:45 am Sunday morning and could not sleep or get comfortable. I thought about just getting up. Instead the thought that came to me was to just lay there and be grateful. A long list of things came into my thought and eventually I fell back asleep. I woke up an hour or so later, not able to sleep and still uncomfortable. So I did the same thing.

I have had pivotal moments in my life when I have woken in the middle of the night and could not get back to sleep with very strong thoughts about another person in my life. Whether I had an intuition that something was not right in the world, or a moment of pause about a specific individual. Early on when I would have these pitch-black-middle-of-the-night intuitions, well they freaked me out. Over time I learned to stop, be quiet, and listen. Depending on how coherent I am I might lay there and pray, or think about how I can support and think good thoughts for the world situation or individual that woke me from sleep.

Waking in the wee hours of Sunday morning was not about a person, but it was a full body reminder for me. Why did I have to lay in bed unwilling to get out of my cozy bed to take moments to be grateful for my amazing husband, family, friends, colleagues, home, work, etc? The list went on in my head. Even to specific worldly pleasures, such as my new favorite sheets that I was laying between. That utter euphoria I felt for all the goodness in my life (does not mean it was perfect) reminded me to take more moments in the day to acknowledge that goodness. Why not before I fall asleep at night? Or at least on those nights when I do not fall asleep the instant my head hits the pillow… Who am I kidding? That never happens to me.

This is a reminder for you and for me. Be grateful. Keep it inside or let it ooze out and tell those that you are feeling gratitude for them. Snuggle in your bed and appreciate the sheets that have you smitten. Watch the video of your niece laughing over and over again. Forget the struggles that you have for a few moments and just be head over heels grateful for all the good in your life.

Are you a nitpick?

Are you a nitpick? I am.

This article from The Washington Post titled: “Carolyn Hax: A wife who gets things done is judged by a nitpicking husband.” I am the nitpick wife. Is it my dad’s fault? He ingrained in me to do it right the first time.

Why am I a nitpick? I make quick decisions often based on my intuition, but also based on the facts I have. I completely relate to the very first line of this article, the only difference is 9 times out of 10 Chris and I both believe that if it is worth doing it is worth doing right. A house project, a work initiative, a trip, whatever it might be, we focus on the plan, and put time into selecting the right options.

“My wife and I live by two different schools of thought. I believe that if something is worth doing, it’s worth doing right, and put lots of time, energy and resources into things I plan.”

We like to make sure we are both on the same page. If one of us researches, then we show the other our findings, sharing pricing, timing, likes/dislikes, and what we think the next steps are for the project. Yes, in essence we project manage our life, but it means there is no miscommunication. Take a weekend. Yes, this might sound sterile, but often I will coordinate all the different errands we need to do (and the list is usually long) and orchestrate where we need to go and when. It feels slightly militaristic, and yet what it actually does is allow for us to get shit done and the rest of the time is for relaxing. If we did not coordinate, we would probably not get what we needed done, and potentially never find any downtime.

I love the ending of the article too:

“As a person on the receiving end of this constant oversight, I can tell you the drip drip drip of disapproval is eroding your wife’s affection for you. I can appreciate my husband’s careful ways (we got a great mortgage rate!), but he has no appreciation for someone like me who knows when it’s just time to pull the trigger and buy some damn sheets instead of endlessly researching thread count. You’ve been warned, husband. Find a way to appreciate her ability to get things done or someday she will leave you.”

I agree with the author. I would never leave Chris and often I want him to decide on the damn sheets, but that is just a little conversation we have to move the decision along. We need someone in the marriage that reads the fine print, watches out for where we might be screwed, and keeps us on our toes. Maybe we are both nitpicks. Either way, I like us just the way we are.

Beds and crisp, clean sheets, ahhh…

I was talking to a friend yesterday over lunch and we discussed a plethora of topics, but one that I kept thinking about later in the day was our shared excitement over having clean sheets. I know what you might be thinking. “Are you seriously going to write about sheets?” Yes, I am. “Why?” Because it is one of the best things ever. “Really??” Yes, really.

Call me a dork, but there are a few little things in life that make me feel relaxed, grounded, and completely at home. One of those things is crawling into a bed with clean, tight sheets at the end of a long week and weekend. There is something fulfilling about it. Kind of like that first day of your stay at a hotel before you have lived in it for a week, except in my opinion my bed is far better than most hotel beds.

Beds. Yes, let me just tell you about my bed snobbery. I am in no way ashamed about it. Think about how many hours you spend in your bed each day. If we each got a good night sleep, we would potentially be in bed for 8 hours a night. That would be 1/3 of our entire day. On weekends you might get even more sleep. It is my opinion that a bed is worth spending good money on in order to find one of good quality. Think about how much money we spend on a car, and I sit in my car for maybe 30 minutes a day, yet I spend more time in my bed. Food for thought?

So back to sheets. If you have a good bed, then you cannot skimp on sheets. The quality also needs to be outstanding. It is what your skin touches all night. They should be soft, appropriate for your body temperature (flannel if you get cold, lighter cotton if you sleep hot), pillows, comforters, they all matter for that perfect night of sleep. Feathers, faux feathers, down, faux down, there are so many options but at the end of the day what is it about your bed that makes you crawl in, decompress, let your body relax, and you fall into a fitful night of sleep?

For me it all starts with the bed, and those clean crisp sheets. Absolute bliss.