gratitude52, Weeks 31 – 36

gratitude52, Weeks 31 – 36featured

gratitude52 (because “52 Weeks of Gratitude” is too much of a mouthful) is a year-long challenge/series on, obviously, gratitude. Read more about the challenge here and all gratitude52 posts here.

I haven’t given up on this! I just…well…I don’t know. I lost my blogging mojo for awhile, especially on Thursday nights/Fridays. So I figured to jump back into it, I’d touch a little on the weeks I’d missed rather than skip them all entirely.

gratitude52: Weeks 31 - 36 {the ponytail diaries}

Week 31: Core Value

Integrity. I don’t always fulfill this as well as I’d like, but I think it’s my integrity that keeps me honest, gets me to keep commitments, and reminds me to show compassion and respect.

Geez, that got serious.

Week 32: A City I’ve Visited

Oh, Paris. I’ve been there three times (once on accident) and I just can’t explain that city’s hold on me. I remember walking out of the Metro with my friend the morning of that accidental, 12-hour visit. It was a fall day, but bright and sunny, and as I looked up and caught a glimpse of the city, I wanted to throw my hands up in the air and twirl around.

I didn’t, because God, how American would that be, but there was an unmistakeable lightness of my steps that day. Even after we crossed the Seine and walked through the Notre-Dame and then walked allllll the way up the Right Bank of the Seine along the Champs-Elysees to the Arc de Triomphe and then turned towards the Eiffel Tower. When can I go back?

Week 33: Something I Look Forward to

Right now, I’m looking forward to my husband finally earning his architecture license — not only because that’s a huge accomplishment for him, and something he’s been working towards for the past 5 years, but also because, without sharing too much, that’s going to open up a lot of choices for us that I’m excited about.

Week 34: My Heritage

Since the last time I wrote about my ancestry, my grandpa discovered some distant link between us and Richard III (the last of the Plantangenet monarchs). My mom and I are choosing to believe that means we’re related to Eleanor of Aquitaine, all-around medieval badass.

Week 35: My Neighborhood

I’m going to purposefully leave this short and vague for, you know, personal safety, but I absolutely love my neighborhood. I lucked out that when I first moved here, it was close to where I used to work, because a reasonably safe area with a short commute was really all I was looking for.

Week 36: My Home

I would pretty confidently put a good deal of money on the fact that we have the absolute best deal, as renters, in our area of the city. Not saying our place is cheap, but the last time I checked on Craigslist, if we wanted to move to a similar place in the neighborhood, we’d be paying a good bit more each month. So (especially after dealing with a string of crappy renting experiences in SLO), I’m incredibly grateful for our landlords.

I’m grateful I had some good timing when I hopped on Craigslist 4+ years ago to skim the latest listings (when I toured the place for the first time, my landlord remarked I emailed within minutes of them posting the ad). I’m grateful that, while we have aspirations to move (hopefully buy) a bigger place, we’re not desperate to get out of a rundown place or bad situation. I’m grateful my grandpa figured out a plan for our patio (which was basically just a concrete slab and some dirt when I moved in. And I’m grateful my husband is handier with design and decorating than I am, or I’d probably still have cardboard boxes in my bedroom instead of, you know, dressers and real furniture.

Thank you for sticking around as I find my footing as a blogger. I’m grateful to have this outlet and for anyone taking the time to read my ramblings.


  • I like that you call it Gratitude52!! It does roll off the tongue much better! 🙂 Ooh paris! That’s somewhere we have yet to go. I’ve mainly been intimidated because I’ve heard so many people say they are so rude and hate Americans.. but then again other people have such a great experience. That’s so exciting that your husband is getting an architecture license!

    • Oh you have to go! I think I’ve had good experiences in Paris in part because I know a little bit of French, so I try to use it, and I’m totally okay laughing at myself. I’ve been teased for my sub-par French and bad accent, but I’ve always been able to laugh it off instead of feeling insulted. Most Parisians I’ve met have been super nice and helpful — making an effort to speak French (even if it’s just “Bonjour, parlez-vous Anglais?”) and being respectful goes a looooong way.

      • I actually took 4 years of french in high school.. but I can’t remember a thing! i will try to brush up before I go. I know the stereotypes of American tourists can also be true. I guess you never know if it’s because Americans are being rude first that they have a bad experience. 🙂