It’s easy to overlook all you’ve got when you look over the fence and see a neighbor’s new mini-van or home construction going on down the block or even the kick-butt wardrobes and super-mod coifs on fellow townsfolk. Me? I tell myself the mini-van is leased and our old one is paid for. I acknowledge that we have our beautiful extension even if we didn’t finish it yet. And, those clothes and that hairdo are nice but they so aren’t my style or wouldn’t look good on me. All true. Still, envy can creep in and lead to forgetfulness. That is, I forget to be thankful for what I’ve got! And, I’ve got a lot…
 I’m thankful for an honest, hard-working and loving husband. Like everyone else, we hit rough spots on occasion. But, he’s my hubby and I wouldn’t trade him for yours or anyone else’s I’ve seen. No offense meant to any of your husbands. I’m just acknowledging that “the Sarg” is just my style and fits me perfectly! I’m so thankful to have him.
 My house is a home. Our beloved, 200-year-old historical, as-yet-unfinished Bayman’s Cottage. It may be half done for the rest of my life but there is a certain, “come in, sit down, kick-off your shoes” kind of comfort here. Friends and loved ones have said they feel the warmth and welcome of our home. That’s what I’m thankful for.
 I am not necessarily all that I would like it to be, physically. Actually, I’m more than I would like to be in many ways (LOL). That is, I wish I were thinner, more physically fit, younger (LOL). I wish I could better accept myself just the way I am. That’s always been hard for me but I’m working not only on acceptance but on achieving a healthier me too. In the meantime, despite my wishes for a different physical me, I am so thankful for the health and vitality I have. Truly. I am strong. I am able. I don’t ache (all that much once I get moving). I am healthy. For 46, I’m all right and I am so grateful for it!
 I couldn’t ask for better pets! I’ve got kid-friendly, other-creature/pet-friendly, neighbor-friendly dogs, cats and even fish (morning greetings at the top of the tank). They’re great watch dogs and watch cats (oddly) all four alerting us to everything and anything out of the ordinary that’s going on outside our home or the homes of our neighbors. They’re always loving and tolerant with the kids. And, Miss Molly Box has finally got the hang of toileting outside and chewing bones instead of household furniture and accessories. LOL! With my kids being who they are — albeit gently, they are lovey dovey to all the animals, all the time — I’m so thankful that I have no worries about scratches or bites. Of course, I watch… after all, they are animals. But nary an aggressive sound or move has been made by any of our pets to any person living in or invited into our home be it adult or child. Now if I could just keep Michael from letting Molly out the front door all the time. Or, maybe I should work on Molly not taking him up on his offer… or both (I guess).
 I believe I’ve got more in my 3 children than all the children in the world combined. Down syndrome and all! They are so awesome and so mine and I could not be more thankful. Honestly, this is one I NEVER forget to thank God for. Multiple times daily as one or more of my children look me in the eye and say, “Come Mama” with a kiss, a hug and a tug of my hand; as they play and [play]fight — sword fights, school, catch me, crafts and raspberries; as the boys learn to swim in our backyard pool choosing their sister “Ala” (Olivia) as their destination; as they close their eyes and drift off to sleep each with their own style, I thank God for giving me Olivia and Brian and Michael. As I say in my Profile, I learn more from my children on a daily basis than I learned in all my years preceding motherhood. No offense to the teachers in my childhood who taught me academics — all important — or my mentors in Corporate America who gave me business saavy (if I may be so bold as to say I actually have any of that). It’s just that my children are teaching me more about life, more about living, more about honesty and integrity and hope and faith every day than I ever imagined possible. More, even, than my adult brain can absorb… but I’m trying like heck! My parents gave me a good foundation in these all-important areas and my kids are finishing off the job with real-life examples of living graciously, thankfully, faithfully, mindfully. And, I’m enjoying my life lessons with these beautiful angels of mine!
Forget what’s over the fence. The grass is greenest when you’re comfortably barefoot in your own backyard! Be mindful, then thankful, for what you’ve got and never mind the rest.