* this morning, I rediscovered the tiny one tazza Bialetti I bought in Florence, Italy back in 2001. It made the perfect swallow of coffee. It tasted like the country in which it was born.
* the Frozen Planet series on Discovery Channel
* Alec Baldwin's voice as narrator
* fresh mango, pineapple, sugar snap peas, and shredded cabbage, but not all at once
* planting peppermint and basil with my daughter yesterday
* a trustworthy auto mechanic, especially since I own a minivan with more than 150,000 miles on it
* journaling, pouring my thoughts, prayers, rants, complaints, joys, dreams, and a few sketches onto paper
* making eye contact with my son while he is in the barber's chair. Barber shop humor spoken with a heavy Southern accent cracks us up!
* learning grammar and punctuation with my son. I thought I knew most of this stuff. Turns out I don't know much at all. (Which verb is correct in this sentence? He is one of the men who does/do the work. The correct answer, based on proper verb and subject agreement is "do." Read that aloud. Doesn't it sound weird? We've decided that there are some rules that may be correct, but we are going to keep doing it the wrong way for fear of sounding either stupid or overly educated in grammar. That's right; we've decided to dumb ourselves down. Actually, we decided that we will simply avoid this kind of verb-subject situation completely.)
* walking Maya this morning and getting caught in the rain. I enjoyed getting wet with her. I'm convinced that she was confused about my wetness because I usually carry an umbrella in the rain, but I wasn't prepared this morning. She spent a lot of time on our morning walk staring at me.
* roasting peanuts here at home. I can't wait to eat some when they cool down a bit.
* learning to love the great outdoors by clipping the bushes and filling nearly 15 bags with leaf debris. Hard work with beautiful results.
* the leaf debris people who come pick up our bags and piles of branches every Tuesday
* cardio funk class in the dark while wearing glow-in-the-dark bracelets and necklaces. Fun was had by all.
* reconnecting with people there whom I haven't seen in a long time (I'm not sure if it should be who or whom. This new book with all of its rules and regulations is gonna mess me up, I suspect.)
* being remember and being missed
* being asked by my watercolor teacher if he could create a portrait of me
* saying yes
* having him give me the portrait as a gift
* recognizing that I am not a watercolorist by nature. I have concluded that writing and taking photographs suit me fine.
* emails and texts that include photos
* sending a letter and some photos to the Spanish teacher in Haiti with the 2nd team that went to Bayonnais. Receiving letters back from him and from one of the students.
* every day, even though each one is infused with challenges, spills, falls, disappointments, and do-overs, every single day is a gift. I am increasingly grateful.