Count Your Blessings


Editor's Note: Aging is what we make of it. Do you fight it tooth and nail, continuing to celebrate your "29th" birthday year after year, or do you embrace it as a badge of honor? Maybe a little of each? One great way to celebrate a new birthday is to take stock of the great things in your life as Hillary Chybinski does in her list below.

Birthdays roll around once a year. Like it or not, every 365 days we add another number to our age. For years, when we are kids, we can't wait to get older. As we move into early adulthood, that eagerness begins to wane. Sometime around 30 the groans begin. Before you know it, you're 40, and then 40-something . . .

I've always considered age nothing but a number; it truly is about how you feel. With 50 as my next approaching number in a short 365 days, I'd be lying if I told you I haven't considered what getting "older" means to me and how it makes me feel. Want to know a secret? I feel pretty good about heading into the second half of my life.

With that in mind, rather than dwell on any negative, I am choosing to focus on all the things I have to be grateful for. Here are 49 of them: 


1. My loving and patient husband of more than 20 years.

2. A teenager with a kind heart — the boy that made me a mom.

3. A happy, funny and loving 10-year-old.

4. Fantastic, supportive and healthy parents.

5. A brother that makes me look good. (I kid — he's an amazing guy!)

6. Aunts and uncles that are always there for us.

7. Fabulous cousins that round out our crazy family.

8. Friends — some old, some new but all cherished.

9. Our stray cat, who showed us we were, in fact, ready for another cat.

10. A sturdy roof over our heads.

11. A cozy and loving home.

12. Food on the table every night.

13. A positive bank balance.

14. Dark chocolate.

15. Starry skies.

16. The Atlantic Ocean.

17. A great pair of jeans.

18. Thick hair.

19. Books.

20. Pizza (my total desert island food).

21. Shopping trips with my mom.

22. Family vacations.

23. Holidays and parties spent with family and friends.

24. Health and wellness.

25. Essential oils.  (Who knew I was using all those toxins?)

See page 2 for the rest of the list!


26. Smartphones. (I never would have guessed what my beloved telephone would morph into.)

27. The internet. 

28. Learning to type when I was in high school.

29. A great skincare regimen.

30. Sharing my essential oil story with others and helping them find better health and wellness.

31. Finally finding a comfortable chair for my desk.

32. A rewarding job at a non-profit that I love, with women changing the world.

33. Inspiration — near and far.

34. Yoga pants.

35. Girls' nights out.

36. Family movie nights.

37. Long talks in the car with my kids.

38. Late night cuddles and the security of knowing someone is always right there. 

39. Changing seasons . . . pretty sure I would get bored of the same weather all the time.

40. Living near most of my family, relatively close to where I grew up.

41. Memories and photographs of long-gone relatives, much missed.

42. Being able to know my grandparents and remember them.

43. Traditions, memories and stories to pass along to my children and future grandchildren.

44. "Sick Days" with my sweetie.

45. A really great song.

46. Goodnight kisses.

47. Spontaneous hugs.

48. Texts from my kids "just because."

49. Vanilla — yes, vanilla —ice cream.


What are you grateful for?

Hillary Chybinski is a crafty mom of 2 boys living the American Dream with her husband in the Philly burbs. This post was adapted from her blog, My Scraps.



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