#366daysofgratitude 2020 – Week 4

At the start of 2016, inspired by a friend, I started a daily gratitude challenge – posting one thing that I was thankful for each day on Instagram. I enjoyed it so much that when I reached the end of that year, I carried on and have kept going ever since. Finding one little thing to be thankful for each day has now become part of my daily routine and I’ve loved seeing friends joining in along the way too.

 

Finding something to be grateful for each day isn’t about trying to give the impression that life is perfect and wonderful. It isn’t. Those little moments of gratitude can be hard to find at times; particularly after my eldest daughter Jessica died in April 2018. Some days, I struggle to find my grateful moment; some days I just feel broken and bruised. But even when it has been hard to do, I have still managed to find something. Even if it is something small, and silly, and trivial.

 

Jessica was an inspiration to me throughout her short life. She had so much strength and such a wonderful zest for life. Her godmother described her once as a “joy carrier” and it was the perfect description for her. She was a little ray of sunshine, full of smiles and gave joy to all who knew her. I am, and will always be, grateful to be her mummy. She taught me to enjoy the little moments and to make the most of everyday because tomorrow is never promised. And even though having to live life without Jessica is by far the hardest thing I have ever had to do, I will continue to look for those little things to be thankful for, and keep going with this challenge in honour of my beautiful brave girl.

 

Here are my grateful moments from the past week:

 

Sophie dressed as Batgirl at her friend's party; a screenshot from my Duolingo app showing the last few completed lessons; a print of an angel wearing glasses surrounded by the words 'feathers appear when angels are near'; Sophie and Thomas in their warm dressing gowns; Thomas walking across a keyboard mat; me and hubby with a very small Jessica and Sophie at Chateau Villandry; me (with Thomas on my back), Sophie and my friend Katy in front of a Wind in the Willows poster - "#366daysofgratitude 2020 - Week 4"

 

Day 26 – I am grateful that my little Batgirl had fun at her friend’s superhero party.

Day 27 – I am grateful that I finally managed to complete all the lessons on the French course on Duolingo after four years of doing it. Each time I’ve come close to completing it before, there was an update to the app and lots of new lessons were added. No doubt there’ll be more new lessons at some point and I’ll still keep practising and using the stories section to work on my French in the meantime, but this feels like a nice achievement!

Day 28 – I am grateful for this beautiful print that I received in the post today from another heart family. The little note that came with it said that the illustration reminded them of my Jessica who was “so brave and so very kind”. What a beautiful thing to receive in the post today and I love the little angel with hair and glasses just like Jessica’s. Always means so very much to know that Jessica is loved and remembered by others and that we are too.

Day 29 – I am grateful for warm dressing gowns on a chilly morning.

Day 30 – I am grateful for music.

Day 31 – I am grateful for diversity, for different cultures and experiences and for my European friends and family. I feel very sad that after today Britain is no longer part of the EU and although I have no choice but to accept Brexit, I am still European and I always will be. Sharing a memory today of a little moment from our last trip across the Channel.

Day 32 – I am grateful for a lovely afternoon at the theatre watching my friend Katy playing a horse, rabbit and stoat in The Wind in the Willows. Such a brilliant show, well done to everyone involved.

 

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28 thoughts on “#366daysofgratitude 2020 – Week 4

  1. Well done on finishing the French course! I’d like to spend more time on my French, but I already go to a German class once a week and can’t manage any more commitment. Learning a language helps me feel closer to Europe though, so I will keep doing that (I’ve been going to German classes pretty much all my adult life).

    1. Going to a German class each week is great – I need to find a class as I’m sure it would help improve my French. I’m with you on that language learning helps you feel closer to Europe – if anything Brexit has made me even more determined to improve my language skills.

  2. Lots of lovely memories and things to be happy about … except for the mention of Brexit. No idea what will happen now, but I’ve got my dual nationality now and the kids had their automatically so I’m not too stressed over the practicalities. Love the Batgirl costume and the dressing gown picture – they look so happy ! xx

    1. I’m glad you have your dual nationality – I wish it was something that could have been an option for us.

  3. What fun photos!
    Well done with the French lessons. Such a great achievement.
    The print is gorgeous. Such a lovely thought from the other heart family. x

  4. That print is beautiful, how very thoughtful. I love the photo of the kids in their dressing gowns, Thomas has such a cheeky face!
    It is very sad that we have left the EU. I really hope things go smoothly after the transition period, but I suspect they will be rather bumpy for a long time to come.

    1. I think you might be right but I’m hoping that things will be smoother than anticipated. Thomas really does have a cheeky little face but it’s such an adorable one 🙂

  5. For some reason my comment never goes through on the first attempt.
    I was saying that your Batgirl is super cute. Big well done on completing your French course. The angel print is lovely, with a beautiful sentiment. Such a thoughtful gift.
    Friday was a very sad day. I’m a European, was and always will be, even if I have the British citizenship.

    1. How bizarre that it never seems to go through first time, no idea why that might be. I’ve not had anything going into spam. I felt very sad on Friday too.

  6. Well done on the french. Impressive keeping it up for 4 years. How lovely to go to the theatre to see your friend.
    I think everyone’s a bit in shock at Brexit. We’re just going to have to ride out the storm – hopefully it won’t be as bad as we all anticipate. I’m just hoping we can / avoid agreeing to US requirements for trading with them, otherwise farming over here and food quality will be devastated.

    1. Oh I hope so – I’m not keen on the sound of some of the US requirements for trade at all and I can imagine they’d have quite a negative impact on farming here too.

  7. I love that card, and she looks so much like Jessica, it’s such a lovely thought. I feel like you about Brexit, with parents who live in Spain and family who are French I find it hard to reconcile myself to everything that’s happening. Can’t beat a good comfy dressing gown #366

    1. It was such a lovely surprise to get that in the post. Brexit makes me feel so very sad and I also find it hard to reconcile myself to it all too.

  8. I love your little bat girl, glad she enjoyed the party. Sad to no longer be part of the EU, I’m amazed at how many people think we’ve left Europe and not the EU, oh well, nowt as strange as folk. Well done on finishing the French lessons.

    1. Yes it is a distinction that people do seem to get confused about. I think there is a sense of leaving Europe too though because in many ways it does feel like we’re cutting the ties we had with other countries (whether that’s a good thing or a bad thing depends on your view!) and that sense of connection has been lost. I’m sure there will be some big changes ahead as a result of it all.

  9. Love the batgirl costume. I need to look at Duolingo as a possible homeschool tool, for French, thanks for reminding me.

    I am gutted about Brexit. Mostly in denial now, I think because it all seems such a mess. I think we are not the only ones.

    1. It does all seem quite a mess – hopefully the politicians will manage to find a way through it all that works.

  10. Cute superhero costume. OoOOo it’s great to keep learning how to speak French. I’ve joined a group that teaches Chinese and I plan to Arabic as well. I can’t imagine what Brexit must feel like. I hope it’s for the best

    1. Oh good luck with learning Chinese and Arabic. I’m still going with the French but have now added German as well.

  11. The print is so beautiful and the motto is definitely one I believe in. I hope Batgirl enjoyed her party, I always struggle to think of female superheroes. #project366

    1. Last time Sophie dressed as a superhero, she dressed up as Jessica which I thought was really lovely.

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