31 Days of Gratitude Challenge 64

Join the Gratitude Revolution!

Life can seem like a chaotic whirl of activity, particularly during the holidays, and it’s easy to get caught up in the worries and irritations of the moment.

31 Days of Gratitude encourages you to pause, take a breath, and acknowledge the things and people in your life for which you are grateful.

From December 1 to December 31, 2012 this is your place to pause. Come every day this month, share your good fortune and read what others are grateful for. Together, let’s transform this simple web page—31 Days of Gratitude—into something more: a calm pool of peace and shared joys.

Laguna de las Lavanderas

  • What nourishes you?
  • What (and whom) would it be difficult to do without?
  • What little things bring moments of pleasure?
  • What are you grateful for today?


Image Credit: Eduardo Amorim via Compfight

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64 thoughts on “31 Days of Gratitude Challenge

  • Khadijah

    What a beautiful idea! I’ll be here. I’ve found since coming back to America I have the most profound moments of pleasure when I am outside at the beginning or end of the day. I close my eyes and I relish the smell of woodsmoke and cool air- the smell of home- that I missed so much while I was gone. I listen to the sound of the wind in the trees, and I remember trying to explain that sound to my children who had never heard it. These small moments of grace nourish me and make my heart happy every time I encounter one.

    • Amber Lea Starfire Post author

      Thank you, Sharon. Personally, I have found that whenever I take the time and thought for gratitude—no matter what is going on in my life—I feel oh, so much better. From annoyance to hope, from hope to realization, from realization to joy.

  • patsy ann taylor

    My nightly journal entry includes a gratitude list. Amber’s more formal approach is intriguing and I plan to add more names of people in my life. Even the ones who are often a negative. Those individuals serve a purpose too. Thanks, Amber, for the fresh ideas. Patsy

    • Amber Lea Starfire Post author

      Patsy, I have periods when gratitude lists are a daily event … and my life always seems better when I remember the good things as they happen. “More formal”? … not so sure … it’s all about tuning into the heart.

    • Sharon Lippincott

      Patsy, what a powerful idea to include gratitude for the thorns in our lives. YES! Love it, and it’s EXACTLY what I needed to hear right this hour today when I had been thinking toward this conclusion.

      Today I am grateful for this brilliant insight.

  • Joyce Spurgin

    I am thankful for my daughter who knew what to do during a medical emergency this last week. I am thankful to be on the mend and being able to get back to the wonderful routine of my life.

  • Carol

    I am grateful that this link works, first of all. ;D
    Thank you, Amber, for putting this out there this month. I think that more than ever, THIS is the month to wrap up our thankfulness for the year. Not to say that it is not a great idea to have a gratitude journal for every day gratitude, but, since this is a month when so many folks actually have the blues or feel lonesome, that this is a good time to think of all of the things/people we have to be grateful for.
    Dec. 1–grateful for my children who have taught me to be the mother they need, each one is his or her own special way.
    Dec 2– I am grateful to have a husband with whom I am free to be completely and totally myself.

    • Amber Lea Starfire Post author

      Carol, me too! (about the link and the time of year). And yes, me too, about my children teaching me … and though I’m not married, I do have a partner who manages not to be threatened by me and who loves me just the way I am. And for that, I feel immensely grateful.

  • Amber Lea Starfire Post author

    I am grateful for my new little grandson, for a wonderful Thanksgiving with (part of) my family, and a relaxing vacation with my sweetheart.

    I am grateful for returning safely home, in spite of scheduling and weather obstacles.

    And I am grateful for my many wonderful friends and colleagues who support and cheer me on.

  • Karen

    This is a wonderful idea. I know that I tend to get caught up in the negatives of life, rather than looking for the good things. Today I am glad that my husband’s surgery was successful, it is warm and the holiday lights are beautiful.

  • Carol

    Amber, congrats on your new grandson. how exciting. I have one grandson and he is 4 and amazing in every way. Love does multiply doesn’t it? ;D ck

  • Juli

    I am thankful for my eldest son Jacob, as he has overcome many follies that being a teenager can bring. Tomorrow, Jacob will be leaving home for 2 years to serve as a missionary. I am thankful to all the great men and women who looked for the goodness in my son and encouraged him dedicated himself to a worthy cause. Juli

  • June Jefferson

    How could I do without the ability and freedom to walk outside my door any time of day or night into the natural world that nourishes me, brings me myriad moments of pleasure, and for which I am truly, always grateful? Thank you for asking us to ask ourselves these questions.

  • Riz

    I went out this morning. Early morning before dawn. It’s snowing heavily where I live at present. I write. I write journal, thoughts, all the things I feel. I’ve been walking and walking and talking to myself as there was no one to hear me. I feel much better after this exercise. I am sure my general anxiety condition will leave me. All I want is to share thoughts.
    Thanks everyone on this forum!

  • Nancilynn Saylor

    I am grateful to be sharing a wonderful life with Romeo
    my beloved life partner. We shared my favorite holiday, Thanksgiving with my
    siblings and some of their children and spuses too. We are very happy to celebrate at the house our parents celebrated in for the last years of my mother’s life. I am grateful to have our dad still with us at almost 90. Good job with good benefits and relatively good health.

  • Renee Cassese

    I like this idea. It’s self-nurturing to focus on the positives in our lives and I look forward to making this a daily task. Today I am grateful for ten minutes alone in my car reading poetry before going into work.

  • Leah

    This is such a wonderful idea! Thanks, Amber! I am grateful today for being alive. I have lived two years with ovarian cancer and am grateful for each day that I’m here! I’m also so grateful for my partner, Larry, who has been with me each and every step of the way. He has a big heart and lots of love. I’m so grateful for that!

  • Barbara Toboni

    Dec. 3: I just saw this today as our power was out yesterday, so I am grateful PG&E and also I was grateful for a day yesterday of not worrying about the TV, internet, phones, etc…had a nice day raking leaves, reading and spending time with my hubby!

  • Amber Lea Starfire Post author

    Today, I am feeling grateful for my health … for a body that works well (most of the time!) … and my ability to exercise. To be able to move freely is such a wonderful thing, and one that I never want to take for granted.

  • Maya Lazarus

    I am grateful to be able to escape the winters of PA and come to Cartagena, Colombia for replenishment. Since coming here (2 weeks ago), my husband and I started a practice of saying a blessing over our food before we eat each meal. We’ve never done this before and we do this individually. In my blessing, I offer gratitude to the person who made the food I’m eating and to the animals and plants who gave their lives so that I could receive nourishment from them. I very much like the awareness that this blessing of gratitude brings to mind.

  • Khadijah

    Today I am grateful for my children, all eight of them, for being such wonderful, bright, creative little beings that make my life more meaningful and never fail to add interest- and very often adventure- to my day!

  • Sarah

    I am grateful for all the good people in the world who work at low wages in Alzheimer’s units to help people that have no other choice but to live there.

  • Leah

    Today I am grateful for all the people in my life who give me guidance, support, and love. It’s so easy to take our loved ones for granted. I want to always remember to never do that.

  • Amber Lea Starfire

    In this moment, I’m feeling gratitude for warm clothing. And for the countless people who worked to make the clothing, from harvesting and manufacturing the raw materials, to weaving, cutting, sewing, inventing and manufacturing the machinery upon which all of this is accomplished, to packaging, shipping, and for all the steps it took to get to me. When I think about it, it’s all pretty amazing!

  • Sharon Lippincott

    Today I am grateful for the beautiful example of patience and open-mindedness set by my 100-year-old mother-in-law whose simple life of caring has left loving footprints in countless thousands of hearts. Her own heart has worn out from loving so much, and I’m also grateful for the compassionate Medford Leas medical center staff who are tending to her needs right now.

  • Khadijah

    Grateful today for memories. How do they all become so bittersweet? Realizing today that even happy memories come with a sting of loss. But grateful to have had the experience, and lived the life, that allowed me to have them.

  • Sarah

    I am grateful today for the desert and the mountains where I live and where it is still in the 60’s everyday, even though it is almost dark at 4:30 in the afternoon. But I also get to see the beautiful sunsets from the 13th floor of the building where I work.

  • Maya Lazarus

    I am grateful to be a freelance editor who can work from anywhere. It allows me the freedom to plan my own schedule while still making a living.

  • Amber Lea Starfire

    I am grateful for the gifts of hope and optimism.

    I am also extremely grateful for all the gratitude shared on this list. And though I can’t always respond to each post, I want to let you know that as I read your expressions of gratitude, I am reminded of the many things for which I also feel grateful—thinking, Me too, me too!

    I am experiencing the power of your grateful hearts.

  • Barbara Toboni

    Today I’m grateful for life. It’s just that simple and the lives of my loved ones and friends. We attended a funeral yesterday for a family friend who died way too young, 53!

  • kp

    I am grateful for people who are willing to take a risk and reach out to strangers. What a gift!!!

    I am grateful for lovingkindess!

    I am grateful for small seeds of hope!

    I am grateful for divine direction.

  • Linda Sievers

    Oooooooooo…love hot coffee in bed with my husband, who has had two, tumor free reports on his battle with bladder cancer. I marvel at how well he has dealt with this health crisis over the past two years. Each day he is grateful that he has been given one more day. I am thankful with him.

  • Amber Lea Starfire Post author

    Today, as my youngest son leaves home, I am grateful for all of my children. I am grateful they have grown to adulthood in their own ways, learned to forge their own paths in life. I feel immensely proud of each of them and grateful for what they have taught me.

  • Amber Lea Starfire Post author

    I am grateful today for my Prius. It may seem strange, but I love my little red car that gets me to so many places … gives me mobility … and sips less gas while doing it. In some ways, it represents freedom. Freedom of movement. Prosperity. So many things. So thank you, my little red Prius, for getting me from here to there and back again.

  • Marlene Samuels

    Last week I drove from Chicago, Illinois – where I live, across a big chunk of America so many of us never, ever see. My destination -Sun Valley, Idaho where I’ll be spending the holidays, teaching three memoir writing workshops, and editing my short story collection. All this will occur while I’m enjoying the amazingly pristine scenery and winter snow of the American Northern Rocky Mountains. Arriving after the 1,746 miles in two and a half days with my two gigantic dogs, I was crabby and exhausted.

    It was at that moment when I decided to leave my unpacking and instead, to take a long walk in newly fallen snow. I watched my dogs bound through powdery drifts for the sheer fun of it, chase each other, burrow their heads deep into tunnels and emerge covered in crystals. Suddenly, I realized that I was smiling, realized that my mood had lifted tremendously and realized, especially, how incredibly grateful I am to have such tremendous opportunities!

  • Sharon Lippincott

    I am grateful for the glimmering example of my mother-in-law as she tip-toes her way across the bridge toward whatever lies beyond. At 100 years of age, she spends much of her time counting her blessings and dispensing gratitude at every opportunity. This in spite of delays in care-staff response and her inability to even walk to the toilet alone. This in spite of her constant nausea, lack of appetite and clogged heart valve. Friends flock in a steady stream into her room on the Skilled Care Unit, and she glows like a California sunset when she sees each one.

    She knows their stories, and they know hers. I am grateful to her for underscoring to me the importance of STORY for linking lives in a sea of living love.

  • Amber Lea Starfire Post author

    I am grateful for the urge and will to write, and for the pre-dawn quiet in which to work. I am honored to know and share stories with incredible writers — most happen to be women — and to be part of a legacy network.

  • Joanne

    I am grateful for the others who have or are opening new doors of opportunity related to my new paths in life as a writer and as an emerging needlepoint artist. Thank you Meghan, Janet, Elizabeth and Anne-Marie! And thank you, Roger, for being my greatest support system.

  • Linda Sievers

    I am grateful for the beautiful snow fall of yesterday. It changes the way the world looks and feels especially if you get up early enough to see it glistening in the morning sun, and before everybody drives over it.

    Also, here in Utah, we need it for our water source, so I am grateful for its beauty and for the water it provides.

    Happy Holidays, Everyone!


  • Sharon Lippincott

    I’m with Sarah, being grateful for a fixed furnace. I’m grateful for Gene, who came out yesterday on a Sunday to diagnose and cobble together a temporary fix, and for the Beam dude who came around today on Christmas Eve to install a new mother board in our aging furnace (who knew?).

  • Amber Lea Starfire Post author

    This morning, I am grateful for so many things … health and well being for all my children (an myself), the love of friends and family, prosperity and comfort, and for compulsively backing up my computer (I came home to a dead hard drive). Life is full of bright possibility. Thank you, Life. And thank you, friends.