This is a local park in my town. Those little specks are families at a fishing derby in the pond. I know, I am pretty lucky. Lucky to live here, lucky to be in sunshine most of the year, lucky, lucky, lucky. That's just what this post is all about. You see I've learned a few things about myself in the last year or so. For one thing, I have learned that I have to get outside everyday or I go kind of squirrel-ly. I have learned that I have to eat nutritious foods, regularly (not just live on caffeine until noon) and that, most of all I must express myself creatively in order to be happy. I must also be grateful. Grateful for it all, what I have, what I don't have, what I learn and mistakes I make, for they are the greatest teacher of all. Yesterday we went for a walk to my favourite store. It's a discount store and it is absolutely crammed with every conceivable thing you could think of from art supplies to home decor to hardware. It just has everything. You could spend hours in there and still not see the whole store. I took my son for a walk because we had some time to kill, and my dollar store list had a few items on it. Yes, I bring a list to the dollar store, too. Otherwise I can get swept away with the "it's only a dollar!" type of mentality and end up buying a bunch of silly stuff that I don't really need. Every so often when I get the urge to splurge, I will give myself a ten dollar limit and throw a bunch of stuff in the basket. Then I have to be selective and take out any items over nine, because with tax, that is my limit. Nine items is usually more than enough. This is why I usually shop alone, not just because I am so weird, but because if somebody says to me, "you should buy that" nine times out of ten, I will ;) Well, I wasn't alone. I was with my son and he, knowing me very well, having scrutinized my every emotion, body language and facial cue since birth, was trying to play me like a fiddle. "You should buy this mom, ooh look at this...isn't it pretty? I think you need this Mom...Oh, I think this is a learning game..." I held fast, though and we left with my only spending $5 dollars and three items. Whew.
We started walking home and were feeling pretty great. The cashier had given my son a lollipop, so he was thrilled. We were walking along when I happened to catch the eye of a young man in front of the book store. He was rinsing his toothbrush from a water bottle. He quickly averted his eyes. I could only assume that he was a homeless person, from the warm clothing and back pack. He was attending to his oral care on the sidewalk. I was reminded in that moment how very lucky I am. Lucky to have my family, my home, my five dollars worth of dollar store merchandise. Lucky that my toothbrush lives in it's own palace, a room of it's own; my very own bathroom(s). I can go to the dentist when I have a problem with my teeth. Lucky that my short walk would take me to my comfortable couch where I could rest my tired feet and warm up from the chilly day. Lucky that we would soon have a hot supper on the table. Do I feel the pinch of the economy sometimes? Sure, I do, but, man... Have I ever got it made.