"22 things I am grateful for this year."

Because it is the day to reflect and say “Thanks Universe”.

For the last few weeks, in the Christmas rush there was a lot to complain about. Parking, rushing around the shops dragging a toddler or two, those last minute pressies you inevitably forgot, the queue for Santa photos and don’t start me on trying to remember each and every accessory needed for your kid’s Christmas concert.

(Moose horns and a cowbell. Really?)

So this year, I am vowing not to get caught up in the angst and instead am trying to focus on what I am really grateful for.

This is what has really made my year:

  1. That Peppa Pig was not axed. We got close Mums but we triumphed. That five-minute window of peace and sanity remains (for now).
  1. That the words to ‘Let it Go’ were just bearable enough to hear sung on repeat 365 days in a row, often several times daily.
  1. That the Elsa costume (which has made an appearance at least once a day since it was presented to my daughter on her third birthday in April) is made from easy anti-stain wash and dry material.
Elsa headband. Up there with the Elsa dress.
  1. That the Elsa doll (which was presented to my daughter on her third birthday in April) was easily replaceable after the dog decided there was no way he was going to “Let it Go”.
  1. That the Elsa bag, t-shirt, hair clip, shoes, book, swimsuit, towel, poster, baby Elsa doll, skating Elsa doll and the talking Elsa doll (which were all presented to my daughter on her third birthday in April) and are all clutched, ferried and carted around daily have not been lost/eaten/ drawn on by a neighbour’s baby/ or left at pre-school. Yet.
  1. That Mincraft had an update which means it no longer freezes our iPad meaning Mister five-and-a-half no longer yells out “I’m going to say the 'S' word Mama if it happens again. I’m saying it. I’m saying it I’m saying it now. STUPID.”
  1. That my 5-year old son still thinks saying “STUPID” is the worst, most shocking swear word there is.
  1. That neither of my sons have been able to crack the code on my iPhone. Gotcha boys. Finally.
  1. That my son’s pre-school teacher learnt the hand signal for “peel him off me now I have to run to work”.
  1. That the lady at the corner store was tolerant enough to smile each time my seven-year old son took his savings down and counted out 72 five-cent pieces in an excruciatingly slow manner as he bought three banana paddle pops.
  1. That a simple banana paddle pop can still be the highlight of a lazy Sunday afternoon on a steamy Summer's day.
Via Streets Paddle Pop Facebook.
  1. That I live in a community where I can allow my two boys to ride their bikes along our cul-de-sac and I know that at every home there is a pair of eyes watching them enjoying the freedom we can still give our children.
  1. That Andy Griffiths 52 Story Tree House was released devoured and read again.
  1. That my son’s school was smart enough to start a supervised Woolworths Animal cards swapping day after the “Great-Animal-cards-scandal-of November -2014”.
  1. That those little blue strips which connect the Woolworth Animal cards are so satisfying to sweep up from each and every nook and cranny of my home, pram, car, garden and bedding.
  1. That Woolies have now released Christmas animal cards. Thanks marketing department I was looking for a new obsession for my kids.
  1. That the loom bands fad came and went quicker than I could scream, “I’m taking the money for a new vacuum cleaner out of your pocket money”.
  1. That my I-don’t-eat-anything-from-the-sea child has not yet worked out fish fingers are actually made of fish.
  1. That my last year before my middle child starts school allowed me to spend two delicious days a week with him to savior his just-starting-to-get-bigness.
  1. For the Hunter Valley, the Swan Valley, the Margaret River and the Barossa.. oh and the Marlborough Region of New Zealand.
  1. That my three kids are still small enough to fight over who gets to hold my hand and rock-paper-scissors over who gets to cuddle me first in the morning.
  1. That we live in a country where my three children are safe and happy and cherished. That they are free from sickness, hunger and pain and that everywhere they turn there is a neighbour, a friend, or even a stranger ready to watch over them and show them they are love.

For that I am grateful this year.

What are you grateful for this year?

Want more? Try:

“The 12 things I am most grateful for as a mum.”

The 20 reasons why I’m grateful my babies aren’t babies anymore.