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Gratitude can transform common days into thanksgivings, turn routine jobs into joy, and change ordinary opportunities into blessings. ~ William Arthur Ward

 

The thanks I give today is for the wood floors found throughout the first floor of the home I share with my husband and children. Yes. Wood floors. These Brazilian-red, wide-set planks have seen better days and will need replacing in the next couple of years. Meanwhile, I can ignore the nicks and flaws and find something special in their worn-in beauty. For instance, that they have provided a steadfast platform for multiple levels of child’s play over the years, from babies on their tummy-time mats, to crawling and scooting toddlers working their way from stacking rings to building sturdy block towers, onto puzzle making, racing trains and cars, and now, presenting the base for elaborate card and board games.

Smooth in surface, these suffering floors offer wide, ample space for practicing ballet twirls, cartwheels and made-up cheers. Children will chase, tag, and hide from each other for fun from one end of the floor to the next. Often enough, the floorboards take quite a beating while we dance in the kitchen to emotion-chosen background music, our feet stomping and bodies moving free-form to the tunes that lighten our moods. So many footsteps of family and friends, neighbors and guests have walked the length of these floors, warming our home with their sheer presence and welcomed visits.

When the day is complete and nighttime falls, clean-up of these wood floors is quite simple and allows extra time in the evening for me to relax and catch-up with my husband after a long day spent apart. These floors in our home are the foundation from which we stand together. So, yes. Today, I am grateful for the luxury of having wood floors–the horizontal platform supporting the hard-won and love-filled living that preserves my beloved family together.

 

The best things in life are nearest: Breath in your nostrils, light in your eyes, flowers at your feet, duties at your hand, the path of right just before you. Then do not grasp at the stars, but do life’s plain, common work as it comes, certain that daily duties and daily bread are the sweetest things in life.  ~ Robert Louis Stevenson

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