1. I finally used my common sense and started getting outside and going for a walk in spite of knees that are worn out. I walk slowly. I walk less often. Yes, my knees might be a little more achy the day after, but they get over it. It's so wonderful to be able to get out there in nature again. The lesson is this: Don't sit around feeling sorry for yourself because you can't do things as often or in the same manner you once did; just do what you can, when you can. You might surprise yourself.
2. My knees. Yes, they remind me often of their presence, but I have learned that when I'm having a "bad knee day", the best thing I can do is remember what good and faithful servants they have been to me for seventy-one years (I do take a Tylenol, of course). I remember the fields and hills I wandered in Taylor County, Iowa, and Harrison County, Missouri, when I was a child and know these knees have served me well. Not to mention the jobs I've worked where I was on my feet walking, day after day: National Bellas Hess, Whitaker Cable, Beckner's Orchard, Kohl's Distribution Center. I had sit-down jobs too, through the years, but I always preferred working on my feet, standing and walking!
And then there was all the walking I did for exercise almost every day from 1980 right up to 2014. I loved every minute of it.
3. The ease of obtaining wonderful books to read at no cost. As a non-driver, I am especially thankful for the way I can check out library books while sitting at home in my easy chair. Not only that, I have ways of finding out which books I will likely enjoy before I check them out. I often check the New York Times Best Seller page online to see what others are reading, and this helps a lot. I frequently look at the lists from previous years, since a good book is timeless.
On the same topic, I'm thankful for devices that, when I'm reading, allow me to find the definition of a word simply by holding my finger on it; or to change the size of the print, when necessary, for my aging eyes.
By the way, at present I'm reading an outstanding book, "The Invention of Wings" by Sue Monk Kidd.
4. All the wonders of the Internet. There's no need to list the ways in which I'm thankful for the World Wide Web.
5. That the oldest grandson bought this property, releasing us from a lot of concerns and cares.
6. For the little girl we've been babysitting for over two years. It has been an ideal situation for a couple of old folks. It's mostly four-day weeks, so we have three-day weekends free to make plans. If we want to go off someplace for a week, Cora's mother is only too happy to take her to Iowa for a visit with Grandma and all the other relatives up there; if we want a vacation, we just have to say the word. Not to mention what a ray of sunshine that little girl is, especially during the cold, gray, shut-in days of winter that used to drag on endlessly.
OK, I know it isn't Thanksgiving. But today I am feeling so grateful for all I have, I just couldn't hold it in a minute longer. I could go on, but then everybody would get bored and stop reading.
Keep on the sunny side, folks. It makes life so much easier.