My ten-month-old niece, Annie, thinks the rubber bouncing ball she's just discovered is the best thing invented since breast milk. She can't get over how it dances and dribbles, first towards her then suddenly away from her. It makes Annie squeal, that rubber ball, and her delight has prompted me to ponder anew the niftiness of such a simple toy - of such simple pleasures.
What gets me all uptight and in a huff is dwelling on stuff I don't already have but really, really neeeeeeed - there's quite a bit I'm often sure I neeeeeed to be happier. A 50 mm camera lens, for example, a vehicle with all its door handles, better kitchen knives, an iBook (the thought of that one makes me salivate), a home gym would be nice, as would furniture without marker stains, and some sort of high tech "wisdom" chip I could insert into my brain to guarantee I'd make the perfect parenting decisions (no more late night second-guessing of myself).
Once I start down that road, ooohhhh boy, it's hard to turn back, back to where all I do have shines and glistens (family, friends, faith, food, library books, book club, our local YMCA, a Bunn coffee maker, another chance to start over each morning, dark chocolate... Why, just look at my life, its extraordinary!) - back to contentment.
May this weekend (yours and mine) be stuffed with loads of little joys, with plenty of in our face reminders to be thankful.