Monday, November 14, 2011

Things I'm Thankful For - #13-14

Yes, yes, I didn't blog yesterday ... oh well.
Obviously we all survived, regardless. ^_^

Okay, let's see ....

13. I am thankful for the fact that my kiddos are learning, bit by bit, to be quieter (and, hopefully, more reverent) at church. Bruise was happily coloring away during most of Sacrament Meeting (like Communion, for you who aren't so fluent in Latter-day Saint Church-speak).
I'm also glad that their Sunday School teacher mentioned to me how much she loves and enjoys her class.
(Bruise and Bucket love her and enjoy their class, too.)

14. I'm grateful for the fact that we are able to pay our bills.
There have been times when money has been tight enough that we've had to work to squeeze water from a rock. But, thankfully, we've never had our electricity or water or phone/internet turned off (It has been by the skin of our teeth before). We, once, almost had our garbage cans removed (and, truly, since we've had those close calls, I DO still get a little nervous when I see the power company, water company, or garbage company trucks in the neighborhood.
Yes, this is a little more information than I usually do share ... but, in full disclosure, how can I not mention it? Without your being aware of those CLOSE CALLS, how can I fully express how many times (and how much) we have been blessed financially?
Even though we're a bit more solvent, I still don't feel like we have wads of cash to throw around.
Which is a reason why I don't do political donations (well, that AND the fact that I'm pretty disillusioned/jaded at present by politics) ... BUT that I STRIVE to donate (and get GIDDY when I CAN) to Heifer International or do a Kiva.org loan ... and, oh, I will be donating to the General Temple Patron Assistance Fund this year.
I don't often do a lot of monetary donations, unless I really, REALLY feel strongly about something.
And these are all causes that I can get behind. Heifer International and Kiva both are groups that work to help others become self-sufficient (AND to help others. Either by passing on the gift [Heifer -- once your animal/garden/whatever is established, you pass on offspring/seeds/a hive/etc to someone else ... and it keeps going] or you pay back the loan(s) [Kiva - which enables donors to assist OTHERS to start small businesses all over the world]). And, with the General Temple Patron Assistance Fund, I can help a person/family to attend the temple ... something that they would not be able to afford on their own. Since not everyone lives in close proximity to a temple.

I also want to donate to the Perpetual Education Fund, which goes with the goals of helping people to be self-reliant. This fund helps individuals to be able to afford education/training so they can be employable and support themselves and their families.

So, as a bonus thing I'm thankful for ...

14.5 - I'm thankful for the opportunity that I have to be able to donate of our finances to help others to become self-reliant and to have opportunities they never have without assistance.
If I had unlimited income, I would very much LOVE to be a philanthropist.
I mean, yes, I'd want to buy books and a house with room for all of us, linen closets, a guest room (or more, since ... as an only child, I will probably be responsible for the care of my parents in their old age ... and, well, let's face it, my folks are not very comfortable around each other. They'd need VERY separate quarters.), a library/den ...
But ... really ... the ability to help?
I LOVE that. And I don't know if it's because I just like to be able to FIX things and make people feel better ... or what ... but it'd be very awesome to be able to write out checks for donations. Especially anonymous donations (or donations in behalf of friends, family, organizations ... I mean, wouldn't that be a cool surprise?).

But, yes, I'm looking forward to when Michael gets his bonus at Christmastime. Then I can pick out a few things from the Heifer International catalog. And maybe finance another Kiva loan. And write out a slip for donations to the General Temple Patron Assistance Fund and the PEF.

Because, really, why else are we all here on earth ... with our different situations and abilities ... if not to be able to help each other?
(And, really, sometimes a smile or a kind word or a hug is just as helpful, if not more so, than a financial contribution. So don't feel like you CAN'T help just because you're not financially flush. Because you totally CAN. Just think outside the donation box. ^_^)

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