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A season of gratitude

Lydia Sparksworthy
Good Reads

In the spirit of the holidays, it feels appropriate to remember an attitude of gratitude.

This season provides us with an opportunity to reflect back on this past year, to take joy in the present moment, and to consider the New Year with a fresh perspective.

Reasons to be grateful, I have lots … being able to see the stars at night, breathe our brisk, mountain air, and share in the unique community that is Truckee with friends and family.-

A source of pride and pleasure for me is our local library and all the people who make it distinctive and special. Ruth Hall, Friends of the Library’s past president, has volunteered so tirelessly for many years to help our library survive and thrive.

Her passion has been an inspiration to everyone who knows her. Ruth’s successor, our current president, Jois Child, continues in this spirit of optimism and energy. We all look forward to great things for our beloved library. Pam McAdoo has kept us informed and delighted with her weekly library column and newsletters. As head librarian, Lauri Ferguson’s dedication and diligence has kept the Truckee library on track, vibrant and dynamic into the 21st century. I am grateful to these folks, and to all the other “friends” who contribute through their efforts to maintain and develop Truckee’s unique library.

On the subject of gratitude, there are several books that come to mind which I’d like to share. First, there is “A Grateful Heart” by M.J.Ryan.

This is a collection of prayers, organized by season, which provides a warm and wonderful way to acknowledge feeling grateful. There is a wide range of blessings, sayings and poems included here. Buddhist, Christian, Jewish and Native American traditions are represented, to name just a few. This book helps me to slow down, and realize the sacred aspect of everyday life, when sharing a meal or a moment with a circle of family and friends … and for that, I am grateful.-

Another book that delights and inspires me is Willie Nelson’s “The Tao of Willie: A Guide to the Happiness in Your Heart.” Written with Willie’s golf buddy, Turk Pipkin, this book contains worldly wisdom from my favorite country artist. Willie’s been around the block, and he has some profound, yet simple insights to share in this little book. I’m told that in Chinese, Lao Tsu means “old man,” so it seems entirely natural that this country version of the “Tao Te Ching,” is offered by our quintessential “good ol’ boy,” Willie Nelson.

The last two books that represent gratitude for me are Patrick McDonnell’s “The Gift of Nothing” and his recent “Just Like Heaven.” Creator of the “Mutts” cartoon strip, McDonnell is a gifted artist who delivers an “ah-ha” message that is never sappy. I enjoy his syndicated strip whenever I get to see it, but these books are just brilliant in their simplicity and beauty of both content and style.-

So please join me in the spirit of the season, by giving thanks for all we have and giving the best of ourselves to those we care about. Cheers.


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