Dear friends,

I didn’t intend to be away for four days. But somehow it happened.

Anyhoo . . . things are fine if a little hectic this week with busy work projects, overnight guests and a short business trip.

I had a handful of thoughts about things I wanted to tell you — some happy, some not. In the end, I failed to make time to write them up for you.

Still, I wanted to share this with you even though it’s late Thursday night and I’m awake far past my bedtime in a depressing airport hotel:

There were a multitude of times this week — when I heard wonderful news from a friend and when I heard sad, when I tackled a very big, very pernicious problem and left a meeting not sure if I made any progress, when I heard the sweetest compliment in a long time, and when I grumbled with irritation at my kids — I found myself saying a silent thank-you for the simple blessings of this life (where simple equals conversation with Mr. Mom, a good supper, blooming flowers, a friend’s phone call, an act by kind neighbors — you know, the good stuff in life.)

I might not have been here to tell you about it, but I noticed it all and I thanked my lucky stars. It makes a difference, you know, to indulge in an appreciative reverie whether the moment is a high note or a low one. There were plenty of both this week, but offering a word of gratitude to the universe either way made each new morning seem more good than not.

Give it a try. Let me know what you find. Consider me your gratitude ombudsman.

With gratitude {for guys like RWE whose eloquence far outstrips my modest efforts but who inspire me to try},

Joan, who even though she found the Marriott depressing found their bed comfortable so she called it all good