Monday, April 24, 2006

Favorite Things Monday

It's a cold, rainy day in Boston. But I have very little to complain about. Wifey must teach today despite knowing that one of her students is at Children's Hospital after a horrifying tragedy this weekend. I'm on the verge of tears, and I don't even know this child. I'm sad for Wifey. I'm sad for the school community. I'm sad to be reminded, once again, that humans can be truly evil. However, in some bizarre and twisted way, this morning is the perfect backdrop for a post I've been planning for weeks.

For the last two years, I've been blessed with Nina Gilbert's friendship. One of the many things I admire about Nina is her ability to stay focused on the positive. Mind you, sometimes it drives me crazy, but 95% of the time, it's a healthy way to cope with the difficult world in which we live. I have very few coping mechanisms, so I'm always on the lookout for something that will help me get through a tough day.

To stay focused on the positive, I'm starting a weekly "Favorite Things Monday" post, in which I'll post photos and stories about my most cherished possessions/places/activities/etc. I was tempted to join SouleMama's "Corners of My Home Thursdays" or "Favorite Things Saturday," but decided that my Favorite Things would extend beyond my home, and Monday was a better day for staying focused on the positive. So here are a few of my Favorite Things ...

For Christmas, Nina gave me this lovely garter stitch scarf in my favorite shade of green, and a super cute pin cushion with homemade shrinky dink pins. She's a new knitter, so this scarf is one of the first few projects she's done. It's so soft and cuddly.

Nina made this awesome quilt for Little Man for his 2nd birthday. He takes it to daycare everyday and uses it for naptime. Of course, no quilt can be spread across the floor without a cat jumping on it.

I know she's going to kill me for this close-up because she's self-conscious about her applique, but I love it, and it's withstood weekly washings for a year. This pic also shows the quilt backing, a beautiful cranberry corduroy textured fleece.

Coolio vintage fabric block

My favorite fabric in the quilt

Another thing I admire about Nina is that she's simultaneously frugal and very generous. I've learned a lot from her about making homemade gifts that are more thoughtful than any store-bought gift. A couple weeks ago, we went to Nina's Dad's house for the 23rd(?) annual family Easter egg hunt. We felt quite honored to be part of her family holiday celebration, and Little Man was delighted to run around with his buddy Grace all morning. Upon arrival, Grace gave Little Man his "Happy Spring" present, a bucket of homemade grape-smelling play dough. Only later that day did I peek underneath the paper decor to see the recycled container. I love it! She's so smart!

There you have it ... a wonderful friend, wonderful prezzies (Nina-speak for presents), and my first attempt to stay focused on the many things I can be grateful for. Happy Monday!


mathomhouse said...

Definitely nice to have more good things to think about. The quilt looks perfect.

Danielle said...

Awww, happy Monday!

Thorny said...

I LOVE the Favorite Things Monday idea. As someone who also has trouble staying focused on the positive, this seems like an excellent practice to get into. And Monday is exactly the right day for it! :)

(Also, strength and healing to Wifey and her colleagues, and of course to that poor family. All the more reason to remember our favorite things.)

Unknown said...

What an uplifting friend you have, and an uplifting idea as well. The quilt is beautiful.

Anonymous said...

What courage to start your Favorite Things Monday against the backdrop of such tragedy. You are indeed blessed with Nina, and she with you, no doubt.

susan said...

What a wonderful concept (Favorite Things Monday) and what a wonderful friend.

My partner and I had a therapist who suggested that once a day, we tell each other about one moment when we had a happy thought about each other, or felt connected to each other, or something. We ended up making it a time when we just told each other what our favorite part of the day was (and that's now something we do as part of a bedtime ritual with our daughter). It's a nice push to think about the happy.

nina beana said...

hi, i'm bawling, and i'm not really a crier :) thank you for honoring me with this wonderful post...i love that you're not afraid to admit that i bug you 5% of the time-
thank you for brightening my day when i need it the most. you're the best.

and for the record, i'm all about the favorite things monday.

hope jess and her school community are so tragic.


Anonymous said...

a few days late, but this post made me all kinds of weepy.