Things to be thankful for....

Health. We tend not to notice it until it goes away.

Productive work. It is a prerequisite for sanity. It is an increasingly rare luxury.

Leisure. Time to read books. Time to make music. Time to watch the Twins.

People. Family, friends. We're all getting older. Sounds sad, but it is not. If we lasted forever, that knowledge would cause us to be unforgiving and petty. Knowing that we are all frail, and increasingly so day by day, enables us to tolerate, appreciate and love what is good in all.

Sanity. Not everybody is lucky enough to have it, and we all struggle for it. When it happens, we should enjoy it.

Food. Not everybody has that, either.

Good coffee in the morning. With all these great new flavorings.

Birds. I am encouraged daily by their energy at the feeder. They have no trouble getting up in the morning!

Trees. To grow, they must commit to one spot for the rest of their life. If that spot has limitations, they just do their best where they're at.

Stars in the sky. A constant reminder of our insignificance--and of the grand mysteries of the universe. May we never unlock all of its secrets! And may we die trying.

Scientific advances in health. We no longer die of abscess teeth. Or tuberculosis. Or measles. Or strep. If it seems like there are mysterious new diseases coming down the pike, it is because science has identified them and is preparing to fight them, something we were not able to do in the past. The more we learn, the more we find there is to learn. We should not let that frighten us.

Death. If not for our imminent demise, we would have no motive to live full lives while we are here. Mortality is a great boon, and shunning it only warps us.

Loss. If not for the possibility of loss, we would never value what we have.

Pumpkin pie.

Fresh green beans at the store in November.