While we all try to be thankful throughout the year, November brings such warm reminders of being grateful and appreciative for what we have. As the holiday season begins we, as the staff of the Nonprofit Leadership Center, wanted to share one thing that makes us pause and give thanks. We’re so delighted to be able to provide education and training for the nonprofits in our community who provide so much and work every day to make our community a better place – for everyone!
“This week I was reminded to be thankful for something I usually take for granted: laundry. As a busy family, we generate a lot of laundry so it’s not something that generates much gratitude, usually. But this week Brian Butler who teaches our course “Form 990: It’s Not Just a Tax Return” shared some of his experiences with Current of Tampa Bay’s Laundry Love Project. Laundry Love Projects assist low-income people with meeting the basic need of washing clothes and linens. He told of meeting people who have to choose between putting gas in their car or washing their clothes. I was reminded of all of the things I have been blessed with in my life – family, education, opportunities – and how I sometimes forget to be grateful for the smallest of my blessings: a laundry room in my home, detergent, fabric softener. I’m especially grateful for my two reluctant laundry helpers – Emma age 10 and Will age 7 – and will try hard this week to convey to them what I learned about appreciation.” — Sara
“Without a doubt, this is my favorite time of the year! I am blessed to be a part of a large loving family and all but a few of them live near enough to me now so that we are able to get together often and celebrate with dinners, parties and gift exchanges. This wasn’t always the case as I have lived many of my adult years far away from sisters, brothers, parents, nieces, nephews, and all the rest, while I was bringing up my own sons. Now that I am reunited with much of my family, our frequent times spent together are extra special to me and always filled with joy, laughter and fun – and memorialized by lots of photos, especially now with the addition of darling grandchildren! As we gather again for this holiday season, I am thankful to all the family and friends – both near and afar.” – Lorraine
“This time of year reminds me to be thankful for something I too often take for granted – a full pantry. According to the USDA (http://tiny.cc/37j4nw) in 2009 – 2011 an average of 15% of Florida households were food insecure – they didn’t know where their next meal was coming from. This month, more than ever, I’ve tried to cook more at home and use the food that fills our pantry. While I complain about having to eat those canned green beans for dinner, I stop and think how grateful others would be for that opportunity. I also put a few more things in our cart that can be shared in our community to help those who aren’t in the same fortunate position as my family – in hopes they can start to stock their own pantry.” – Ashley
“Not a day goes by that I don’t drive by someone sitting at a bus stop waiting for the bus to come. And, every single time that happens, I am consciously and sincerely thankful for having a car on which I can rely every day. I am thankful for many things like my family, my job, and my colleagues at work. But those are things we are almost unconsciously grateful for every day.
My bus stop gratitude is very heartfelt because with different choices in my life, it could have been me waiting at the bus stop. Instead, I have been blessed with great transportation and I don’t have to worry or be inconvenienced. I am very thankful for this very special daily blessing.” — Grace
“Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.”
— William Arthur Ward