Turning 43 (or: 43 Things I'm Grateful For)

Erika Petrelli
Erika Petrelli

Erika is turning 43. However, the gift is for us this year

My birthday is later this week and so as per usual it has me reflecting on life, and all that I am grateful for.  I'm turning 43, so I thought I would list 43 of those things here:

  • Marlowe, my beautiful 7-year old daughter who is crazy-smart and creative and talented and perceptive
  • Dylan, my gorgeous 4-year old son who is mischievous and hilarious and outgoing and smart-as-a-whip
  • My hubby
  • My family, and the fact that I get to see my parents every week
  • My extended family
  • Our house, no matter how messy it is
  • My place of employment
  • My co-workers, many of whom I've worked with for more than ten years
  • Working at home
  • Rainbows
  • The crisp fall air
  • The crockpot
  • The ability to write this blog each week
  • Things that make me laugh until I cry, like “Drunk History” or “Kid Snippets”
  • Fountain diet cokes with extra ice
  • How my kids come into my bed before the morning is quite ready to begin and we snuggle
  • Watching kids' tv shows at night so we have more family time together, with multiple snacks... even though it means I can't join any conversations about Walking Dead or Scandal
  • Indiana
  • New York City
  • Sweaters and snuggly socks
  • Festivals with face paint and lemon shake-ups
  • Living so close to where I grew up that I can show my kids the house I grew up in, the schools I went to, the fields I played soccer on (which, shockingly, have not changed one single bit in the 35+ years since my little feet were there)
  • Big skies and big clouds and big stars
  • Hearing my kids sing (right now their song of choice is “Honey I’m Good.” Errr…)
  • My kids’ art and creative concoctions
  • My mini-van
  • Kid President
  • Brian Andreas and StoryPeople
  • Getting lost in a novel
  • Slow start Sundays
  • Taco Tuesdays
  • Boots
  • Kindness
  • Decorating the house for holidays
  • Holidays
  • Wine
  • Friends that I can laugh with even if I only ever see them once a year
  • Hearing the cicadas and the crickets and the birds and the other bits of nature that sing in my backyard
  • Going to bed early
  • Comfortable clothes
  • Sea Salt and Black Pepper Triscuits (seriously, those things)
  • Music
  • This day

I could keep going, and the list would be filled with more of the same...the things I am grateful for are so simple, and they haven't changed much over the past few years. So simple, yet they mean everything.

This day, this glass of water, this sunny sky, this dinner being made while the kids are playing with legos or games on the computer, this. This ride in the van, this soda from the drive-through, this chat with my mom, this. This spider crawling on the ceiling above my head, this errand, this walk to the pond to feed the fish, this.

I hold out my hands and say thank you for this.

What "this" are you grateful for today? 

Share what you're grateful for below, or tweet me @ErikaPetrelli1


Erika Petrelli

By Erika Petrelli

Erika Petrelli is the Senior Vice President of Leadership Development (and self-declared Minister of Mischief) for The Leadership Program, a New York City-based organization. With a Masters degree in Secondary Education, Erika has been in the field of teaching and training for decades, and has been with The Leadership Program since 1999. There she has the opportunity to nurture the individual leadership spirit in both students and adults across the country, through training, coaching, keynotes, and writing. The legacy Erika strives daily to create is to be the runway upon which others take flight. If you enjoy these blogs, you should check out her interactive journal, On Wings & Whimsy: Finding the Extraordinary Within the Ordinary, now available for sale on Amazon. While her work takes her all around the country, Erika calls Indiana home.