Today, on my 42nd birthday, I set out to write a list of 43 things for which I am grateful. Yes, my English birthday is just a few weeks away (for those of you who will be confused when it comes up on Facebook! We celebrate my Hebrew birthday in the house, but then I have fun getting my Facebook messages and calls from family on the 27th). Anyway…here are some of the things I’m grateful for as I turn 42.
1. The wrinkles around my eyes that show I laugh a lot.
2. The age spots on my hands that remind me of my many years, well lived.
3. My make-up bag that sits in the drawer and is almost never used. I always assumed that I would start wearing daily make-up when I grew up….hmmmm…wonder when that will be.
4. My ability to bring fresh cakes each month to soldiers who protect us each day.
5. The yells of “Mommy!” that greet me each morning from Yakir’s crib….
6. And the deliciously warm cuddles I receive when I bring him into my bed.
7. The surprise birthday sign with all of its spelling mistakes, made by two of my children and proudly presented by four.
8. Matan’s recent bar mitzvah and the amazing job that he did reading, giving his speech and enjoying his simcha.
9.The thank you notes that Matan has been writing methodically and beautifully (blog coming on this topic soon).
10. My family near and far and the love I receive from all of them.
11. My 92 year old grandmother who still loves to talk with me about books.
12. My ability to wish my mom, my mother in law and my grandmother a Happy Mother’s Day!
13. Our families in America who came all the way to Matan’s bar mitzvah and celebrated such joy with us.
14. Yehuda’s confidence as he plays basketball on the community team.
15. Eliav’s certificate of excellence that he received on Friday for his good character. And that adorable toothless grin that he shows in the picture.
16. Eliav’s front tooth that is finally coming in, 4 years after it was pulled as a result of an accident he had. Won’t he look funny with one front tooth in and one still to grow!
17. Zeli’s sweet nature (most of the time).
18. The ritual I have with Zeli when I drop him at his class. He needs a hug and a kiss before I can leave….
19. And then he yells “I wuv you!” the whole way into his class as I walk away.
20. Amichai’s question last night, “Mommy, are you going to make yourself a cake?”
21. Amichai’s desire to snuggle still, even though he’s eight and a half.
22. The pleasure that the boys all get out of Yakir and the way they make him giggle.
23. The omelet that Josh made me for breakfast today, breaking his neck to get everything done before his 6:30 am bus.
24. Josh’s present, my iPhone 5, that I vehemently insisted I didn’t need or want…and that I absolutely love. How does he always know?
25. My job and the wonderful people with whom I work each day.
26. Our car that works each day, saves us money on gas and lets me feel like a sports-car driving Mama.
27. The Hebrew skills that I DO have (which are quite poor) and my ability to get everything done (eventually) that has to be done in the house.
28. Curves. Yeah for exercise!
29. My ability to exercise almost every day and to squeeze this important activity into my life.
30. My Curves friends who all wanted to know about Matan’s bar mitzvah and whether or not the weather held (they said they were all thinking about us on the day and worrying for us). So cute!
31. My beautiful home that stays dry (most of the time), keeps us warm and has room for all of us.
32. My friends near and far who listen to my complaints, laugh with me (particularly about our kids) and are always there when I need them.
33. My amazing best friend who keeps fighting and reminding me what real strength looks like.
34. My morning coffee at work…I love that machine.
35. My Kindle…let me count the ways that I love that device.
36. The book club that I have with my dad and the beautiful books that I read each day.
37. The blankets from Auntie Janie that are all around the house, and that allow us to cuddle up all the time.
38. The convenience of my life which is lived within a 5 mile radius (less?) for my work needs, shopping needs, groceries, after school activities for the kids and all else.
39. The seven weddings that we will be attending this summer. Can’t wait to celebrate!
40. The fact that we live in Eretz Yisrael and can enjoy things like the official national ceremony for Yom Yerushalayim (Jerusalem Day) that Josh attended with four of our boys at Ammunition Hill.
41. The 50 day commitment that Josh and four boys made to go to shul together every single night to count the Omer. They have one more day.
42. The beautiful paintings that fill my home made by Matan and Yehuda and the anticipation that I get after each painting class to see what they bring home next.
43. The ability to look forward to yet another year filled with beauty, health, family and Hashem’s grace.