A few weeks ago, i wrote a thankfulness list about the people for whom i do paid work.
Yesterday, i was at the shelter twice, once to pick up paperwork on the foster kittens, and once to do my regular shift. It made me think about how thankful i am for my volunteer jobs, too.
There are several reasons to be thankful for the work i get to do with the shelter. Bottle feeding kittens is a huge blessing, although the other cats besides Dansig do not agree. (Unless it hisses at him first, Dansig has never met another cat he didn't like.)
Taking shifts at the shelter is a great way to get to interact with a hundred cats or more each week, and i'm thankful for the opportunity to get to know them a bit so i can talk to potential adopters about them.
The people who love animals so much that they are willing to work at a non-profit shelter for much less than they could probably earn elsewhere are fabulous, and i'm grateful for each of them.
My volunteer work at the homeless ministry comes with many reasons to be thankful. People who hang in the part of town most people don't want to go to have taught me a lot, especially that just like everyone else, if you are nice to them, they will be nice to you.
Distributing food down there has made me thankful for the companies that donate the food. Our local Trader Joe's is especially generous.
Attending an outdoor church with them has taught me to be very thankful for our church, especially for the people who go out there with me. We work under a fabulous team, as well, people committed to making sure those who might not feel comfortable in a church building nevertheless have a place in which to worship.
Years and years of volunteering in Sunday school classes and church nurseries has been an education in itself. Most children, i am thankful to have learned, are willing to help with the clean-up time if you don't surprise them with it. Set a timer and tell them when it sounds we will put toys away and do another activity, and they generally cooperate.
There is little that makes you feel better than going into your usual class and having the kids not just recognize you, but run to hug you. Every hug is special, every child is precious.
Also i am thankful for the Sunday school teachers and nursery workers. They are deeply committed to nurturing souls, not just babysitting the children for an hour.
rEcess makes me thankful, especially for Emmy and how she loves peace and quiet. Every rEcess night is fun and full of smiles.
Is there any "work" that you do that is really more like play? Any volunteer opportunities that bring you joy? List the things you are thankful for about that or any other things that just make you smile, and join us at Ten Things of Thankful. Gratitude, after all, is contagious.
Aloha Day -- unofficial celebration of the annexation of Hawai'i by the US
Anniversary of Snick-Snacker's Left Foot -- Fairy Calendar
Anvil Mountain 59 Minute 37 Second Challenge -- Nome, AK, US (starting gun sounds at 7 pm, and the course begins at the base of Anvil Mountain, goes uphill then back down via a gravel road, with the challenge being to do it in less than the time allotted)
Awa Odori Festival -- Tokushima, Japan (through the 15th; one of Japan's largest dance festivals, Awa-dance is said to be a "fool's dance", and the saying is "It's a fool who dances and a fool who watches, so if both are fools, you may as well dance!")
Bud Billiken Parade -- Chicago, IL, US (second largest parade in the US, as well as the oldest and largest African-American parade in the US, begun in 1929)
Celebrate Your Lakes Day -- originally a senate resolution in the US state of New Hampshire to celebrate local lakes and ponds, now more widely observed; go enjoy some recreation at a pond, lake, or even river or stream near you!
Coupeville Arts and Crafts Festival -- Coupeville, WA, US (one of the longest-running arts festivals in the Pacific Northwest, with only the best artisans, lots of entertainment, and proceeds donated to the community; through tomorrow)
Crater Lake Rim Runs and Marathon -- Crater Lake National Park, OR, US (one of the toughest and most spectacular runs ever, around the deepest lake in the US)
Ferry Fair Day -- South Queensferry, Edinburgh, Scotland (centuries old fair, the biggest day of the modern festival that was originally a way for farmers to find labour for harvest, but is now just for fun)
Festival for Hercules Invictus -- Ancient Roman Calendar (through tomorrow; based on an even older Greek celebration of Heracles at the same time of year)
Festival for Venus Vitrix -- Ancient Roman Calendar (Victorius Venus)
Grouse Day/Glorious Twelfth -- England; Scotland (opening of grouse hunting season)
Her Majesty the Queen's Birthday and National Mother's Day -- Thailand
International Youth Day -- UN
Inter-State Fair and Rodeo -- Coffeyville, KS, US (rodeo, livestock shows, carnival, and more; through the 19th)
Julienne Fries Day
Leadville Trail 100 Bike Race -- Leadville, CO, US (100 miles of off-road bike racing over Colorado's high peaks)
Lychnapsia -- Ancient Roman Calendar (celebration of the Birthday of Isis, instituted after the conquest of Egypt)
Middle Children's Day -- on some sites, listed as Aug. 14; either way, Middle Children deserve a special day!
National Garage Sale Day -- US (the goal, according to C. Daniel Rhodes, is to turn the nation into a giant shopping mall on the second Saturday of August each year)
National Toasted Almond Bar Day
Osirian Mysteries; Feast of the Lights of Isis -- Ancient Egyptian Calendar (date approximate, but this is the date the Romans gave it, so who am i to quibble?)
PC Day -- no, not politically correct, personal computer; IBM introduced theirs this day in 1981
Perseid Meteor Showers -- in 2017, peak visibility is tonight; the Celts believed these meteors were due to games being played by Lugh, their sun god
Put Peanuts in Your Coca Cola Day -- and no, i can't figure this one out, but they say don't shake it once you do it; if anyone else wants to experiment with why, let me know the results
Solar Alignment with Teotihuacan, City of the Gods -- ancient when the Aztecs found its ruins, this city's ritual cave aligns with the setting sun today and April 29, also the rising and setting dates of the Pleiades
St. Gracilian's Day (Patron of Bassano Romano, Italy)
St. Murtagh's Day (Patron of Killaria, Ireland)
Stillaguamish Festival of the River and Pow Wow -- Arlington, WA, US (sponsored by the Stillaguamish Tribe, activities for everyone; through tomorrow)
Streetscene -- Covington, VA, US (car show, open to all types of vehicles; come show off your ride!)
Vinyl Record Day -- celebrating the tremendous cultural influence of records, on the anniversary of the day in 1877 that Edison invented the phonograph
Watermelon Festival -- Rush Springs, OK, US (fun all day and free watermelon for all)
World Elephant Day -- learn more here
Zaraday a/k/a Zarathud's Day -- Discordianism
Casey Affleck, 1975
Pete Sampras, 1971
Peter Krause, 1964
Ann M. Martin, 1955
Pat Metheny, 1954
Sam J. Jones, 1954
Skip Caray, 1939
George Hamilton, 1939
William Goldman, 1931
George Soros, 1930
Alvis Edgar “Buck” Owens, 1929
John Derek, 1926
Michael Kidd, 1915
Jane Wyatt, 1912
Joe Besser, 1907
Alfred Lunt, 1892
Cecil B. DeMille, 1881
Christopher "Christy" Mathewson, 1880
Edith Hamilton, 1867
Katharine Lee Bates, 1859
"Diamond Jim" Brady, 1856
Robert Mills, 1781
Thomas Bewick, 1753
Wings(Film, only silent film to win the Oscar for Best Picture), 1927
Today in History:
The last ruler of the Egyptian Ptolemaic Dynasty, Cleopatra VII Philopater, allegedly commits suicide by asp bite, BC30
A conjunction of Venus and Jupiter occurs which may have been what the Bible calls the Star of Bethlehem, 3
Crusaders win the Battle of Ascalon, 1099
Juan Ponce de Leon arrives in Puerto Rico, 1508
Praying Indian John Alderman shoots and kills Metacomet, the Wampanoag war chief, ending King Philip's War, 1676
Isaac Singer is granted a patent for his sewing machine, the first one to be practical for home use, 1851
Asaph Hall discovers Deimos, 1877
The last quagga, a subspecies of zebra once plentiful in South Africa, dies at the Artis Magistra zoo in Amsterdam, 1883
Hawai'i is annexed by the US, 1898
William Somerset Maugham published "Of Human Bondage", 1915
Alleged date of the first Philadelphia Experiment test on United States Navy ship USS Eldridge, 1943
The Soviet Union detonates its first thermonuclear weapon, 1953
Echo I, the first communications satellite, is launched, 1960
South Africa is banned from the Olympic Games because of its racist policies, 1964
The first free flight of the Space Shuttle Enterprise, 1977
The IBM Personal Computer is released, 1981
Canada, Mexico, and the United States announce completion of negotiations for the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), 1992
The Oscar class submarine K-141 Kursk of the Russian Navy explodes and sinks in the Barents Sea during a military exercise, 2000
The Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter launches, 2005
Director of Wikileaks, Julian Assange, announces plans to release remaining Afghan War Diary documents from War in Afghanistan, 2010
President Obama's health insurance mandate from his Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is struck down by the U.S. court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, 2011
The International Olympic Committee announces it will punish athletes who support Russian LGBT rights at the 2014 Winter Olympic Games, 2013