Here is Mount Shasta up in the northernmost part of California. Even though it's not particularly close to our house, it's almost a symbol of gratitude to me. My friend Chari lives with a view of the mountain from her house and she often posts a picture of the mountain just to show what she has to be grateful for. Don't you think that's a good idea in general? Her life is not always perfectly happy and serene, any more than anyone's is, but whenever she looks at the mountain she thinks of how beautiful it is, how fortunate she is to have such a beautiful view, and how God in His bounty provided her with that setting in which to bring up her six children and live her life.
Gratitude: For the good things in my life, the things that are always there but sometimes go unnoticed because of their very solidity and stillness.
Thinking of Mt Shasta and Chari reminds me how grateful I am for this durable family friendship. When my daughter was only 10 she was lonely for the first time in her life. She had always been very close to her next-in-age brother but now she wanted a girlfriend, a "kindred spirit". She and I said a novena together. Soon after that Chari's oldest daughter wrote Clare a letter and a pen-pal relationship started that turned into a true friendship when our families met. We were blessed several-fold because now Chari and I are close friends and several of our children have close friendships as well. A couple of them even go to the same college.
Gratitude: For prayers answered in such a loving, unique way, leading to so many fruits beyond the prayer itself. No matter HOW God answers my prayers, He always does, and He does it with an infinite, personal care.