Welcome to Day 6 of our 12 Days of Journal Challenge. We are going to talk about giving thanks for the simple pleasures in life. Be sure to check out our Day 5 Challenge Post too.

Life's become so complicated. And yet, more than ever people are setting aside time in their busy schedules to indulge in the simple pleasures. Have you managed to cultivate an attitude of gratitude for the little things in life, that mean so much?

Here are some simple, old-time enjoyments that have made a comeback in recent years, despite the technological advancements of our time.

Home cooking. Comforting foods that are good for you never seem to go out of style, do they. It doesn't matter what the latest eating trends are, or which famous chefs have put out a new set of gadgets or series of cookbooks. Home-cooked meals using simple, healthful and wholesome ingredients will always be the preferred choice. Treasured recipes that have been passed down from grandmom to mom to daughter to son will never go out of food fashion.

Local, seasonal fare. Here in North America, we have a wide assortment of convenience foods that are flown in from the farthest corners of the world. And yet, now more than ever, we're grateful for access to fresh, local ingredients that are grown or farm-raised in healthy, humane ways. Do you support local farmers by buying local eggs or purchasing produce from small farms that are close to home? Do you tend to prepare what's in season, rather than indulging every whim and fancy? Cultivating an appreciation for simple, homegrown foods makes good sense for every body.

Gardening. Do you tend a patch of home-grown vegetables and herbs that grace your table with a healthful rainbow of tastes and textures? The self sufficiency that comes with being able to nurture one's dinner to life from small seeds or plants is both rewarding and remarkable. A grateful gardener gives thanks for rich, fertile soil, life giving sun, and thirst-quenching rain. She revels in the simple beauty of heirloom seeds, carefully preserved and passed down through generations… work-worn hands that nurture life into being… and the bounty of harvest that graces the family table with the fruits and vegetables of her labor.

Crafting. Are you a crafter or creator? Then give thanks for those amazing, skilled hands of the great makers who paved the way for you to master their skills. Knitting and crocheting resurged in popularity about 20 years ago, and continue to be a mainstay leisure activity even with our easy access to fashions from around the world. These old-world skills live on in modern society because the desire to put our hands to work creating something useful and practical has remained a feature of human existence. If you are a maker, give thanks for nimble fingers, a patient brain, and keen eyes that envision the end before the beginning.

Campfires. Take a peek over fences and into neighbor's backyards, and you'll likely see something totally unexpected and unnecessary, yet more common than ever. The glowing embers of a backyard campfire are about as basic of a human enjoyment as one can get, and continue to be a preferred method of relaxation for many. What's more, they provide warmth for our bodies, fire to cook by, and the brightest of lights to illuminate our dreams.

Exercise: Revel in the simple pleasures of life.

Journal Tip: Use this exercise to create a simple pleasures of life entry in your journal today. Think about what simple pleasures you really enjoy. Then journal about what they are and why they are so special to you. Is this a pleasure that you enjoyed with your mom or grandmother for example? 

Have you rediscovered the uncomplicated beauty of some very basic pastimes – like cooking, crafting, making things, fishing, walking or  just being?

We really hope that you have been enjoying this days of gratitude challenge. Once you have completed today’s journal exercise feel free to leave a comment below, or come and join in the conversation on our Facebook Page.


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