Relative Something

*this* John W. Hays' take on things and experiences

Posts Tagged ‘gratitude

Grasp

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Words on Images

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Written by johnwhays

September 8, 2018 at 7:47 am

First Aroma

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It was one week ago that I wrote about the waning days of summer and my noticing colored leaves in our grass beneath the tree that always turns early. Now, on the last day of August, it’s probably right on schedule that I noticed my first scent of dry leaves in our woods.

It doesn’t even look like there are enough leaves on the ground to be noticeable, but the smell is there.

I was doing some forest bathing with Delilah and breathing in the aroma as we walked the trail. It made me think of September, and then I realized that the month begins tomorrow.

The smell may not be early, but it seems like it is.

Last night was a gorgeous summer evening with a perfect temperature and fabulous sky when Delilah and I headed out later in the evening to tuck the chickens in their coop for the night. The horses had wandered through the open gate out onto the grass of the middle pasture again, and the scene was a perfect picture-postcard moment.

In sharp contrast to the travails of so many other people and places in the world, the sanctuary of our property is quite the healing balm for whatever assails my being.

The aroma of fallen leaves comes as a particularly precious added bonus.

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Written by johnwhays

August 31, 2017 at 6:00 am

Precious Getaway

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We are so lucky to have people who are willing and able to take care of our animals for enough time to allow us to get away to the lake place every so often. It is our Memorial holiday weekend in the U.S. and for the second time in three weeks, we are again up at the lake place.

This time, we are without Delilah. She stayed home to be with our very capable recent college graduate, McKenna. Two of Cyndie’s brothers are up here with kids, and her parents as well. We got the weekend off to a very festive start by venturing out to the Lost Land Lake Lodge for the Friday night fish fry.

The place was hopping and our server was a real charm. Food was perfect in every way and the family banter was wonderfully entertaining. It was almost enough to entirely purge the lingering mental distractions of the day-job, where business has gotten so good (busy) it’s getting annoying.

Before the night was over, I had already lost two completely different card games. It didn’t bother me one bit. The precious ambiance was all the victory I needed for putting me in my happiest of places.

A precious getaway is an amazingly priceless luxury. This one is certainly more than I deserve.

As it fills my cup to overflowing, I will send the extra love out to you and the world to distribute and amplify all that is good.

It’s the least one can do for a world that too often seems out of our reach to help.

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In-Law Jackpot

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It was at Christmastime about 34 years ago that I embarked on the first steps of a journey that has proved to be more remarkable than I dreamed would be possible for me. I won the in-law lottery. I hit the jackpot. I will never comprehend what it was like for Cyndie’s parents to deal with the fact that I had asked for permission to marry their daughter —their first-born child, for heaven’s sake— but for me it was just a mind-numbing step in my magical journey of life.

Sometimes when I think back on it, I feel astounded that they said yes. I owe Fred and Marie Friswold more appreciation than I have been able to convey. How can I adequately express what it has meant to me to be accepted into their family? The immensity of my gratitude is beyond what I have ever thought to speak.

FredMarieDSC02641From that very day when I asked for their blessing to take Cyndie’s hand in marriage —when Marie’s first response came out as shock that I was asking her while she was in the middle of untangling Christmas lights— I have fallen short of telling them what they have deserved to hear.

Once again, I resort to writing. It is my preferred means. I figured maybe I would get a Christmas card for them and write a heart-felt note. Thinking about what I should write, I realized it would probably need to be a letter. That quickly led to this: a blog post. Even though they are humble enough to likely favor I had stuck with the card idea, I would like to profess my appreciation for them to the world.

It’s not like the years have been without turmoil. I am embarrassed for the number of times I failed to mask my preference to be back among the Hays way of doing things when in the midst of all things Friswold. It has always turned out to be a small price to pay. For the most part, I have been blessed with the opportunity to bask in the greatness that Fred and Marie create. Their generosity and patience is immeasurable. They have taken me to places I never thought possible, and provide never-ending support to me, Cyndie’s and my marriage, and to our children. Their acceptance and support of me is a precious gift I treasure more than any other.

Christmas is a particularly special time when their saintliness shines. They care for others with boundless benevolence. I always receive from them more than what I feel I deserve, but that is not how they measure their giving.

Fred and Marie have succeeded in the art of family where so many others have failed. It is a wonder to behold and an amazing thing to experience first hand, as their son-in-law. I owe them credit for more than I can grasp about who I am and what I have experienced.

Either written or spoken, what they mean to me really is greater than words. If you are reading this, I hope you have a sense of how blessed I feel and an inkling of the grandiosity of jackpot with which I have been blessed. I hope Fred and Marie will sense that I am more grateful to them than I ever have been, or ever will be able to say.

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Written by johnwhays

December 20, 2014 at 11:27 am