Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Teaching kids to be thankful

You may be shocked to discover this, but I have a pretty vast aptitude for complaining.  I  come from a long line of Lamenting All Stars, and I could go all night. Weirdly, I am also a generally, and deeply, optimistic person, which counteracts my ability to complain endlessly about petty details.

Still, the complaining gets annoying. I have learned this from listening to my daughter. She's a Master Kvetcher, a real chip off my mom's block. A few months ago,  I started working with her on being less negative - focusing attention on the positive parts of the picture, finding silver linings. The simplest and best strategy we've used to achieve this superhuman feat is a listL A Things That Make Me Happy list, or alternatively Things I like or Things I'm Grateful For. It's been an edifying process which has served as a fantastic reminder for me to linger on the positive, to savor the good stuff.

So I feel like we've been in Thanksgiving mode, and are ready for the one day a year officially devoted to such an endeavor. In the spirit of Thanksgiving, I thought I'd share Seconda's list. Every one of these are things which also make me happy. Who wouldn't smile at a guinea pig?

Seconda's Things that Make Me Happy List

Whoopie pies
Guinea pigs
Days when Daddy's off
Smell of leaves in fall 
Stuffed cats 
Doing handstands on the couch 
Running into friends on the street 
Warm baths
Playing with my little sister
Playing with friends
Getting a new frog
Petting dogs on the street 
Finding marbles
Barber shop swirling sign 
Seeing bugs
Squashing berries
Hanging out with nice teenagers
Making chocolate cream pie with Daddy