Finished! An exercise in gratitude

IMG_0309Euphoria – that’s what I felt after finally finishing my deck this weekend. Or maybe I was just a little giddy from the deck stain fumes.

Yes, I know it’s a little late in the year to be staining a deck. I prefer to think of it as a head start on next year.

And in that spirit, rather than dwell on the negatives (like the 8,000 oak leaves that fell as I worked, or the birds who decided to party a little too hard on my freshly cleaned deck), I’ve decided to express gratitude for the people and circumstances that contributed to my success.

I’d like to thank:

  • Twenty-odd years of yoga for enabling me to work in a crouching position all weekend.
  • A well-ventilated area, that is to say, the outdoors, although even that was not quite ventilated enough.
  • My friend Barb who drove my daughter home so I could stay doggedly at my task.
  • Sherwin-Williams’ semi-transparent stain for covering up a multitude of evils.
  • That the deck is outside so every time I got frustrated with the quality of my efforts I could say, “Get a grip, it’s OUTSIDE, how good does it have to look?”
  • A couple of rain-free, just-windy-enough-days.
  • The Gopher-Michigan football game for providing energizing background noise (for a change).
  • The excellent gouda cheese my husband bought at Costco. It may not seem like there’s a link here, but trust me, there is.
  • Evening opera tix to La Fanciulla del West, which was the light at the end of a cedar-stain covered tunnel. (I know that those of you who don’t care for opera, which is about 99.75% of you, are wondering how an opera could possibly be the light at the end of anyone’s tunnel – and in fact would probably stain a deck to avoid having to go to the opera. I make no apologies.)
  • Scott and Heather who took my boys boating for a whole day. That was eight hours I was not interrupted every 15 seconds. Do you realize how fast all that time adds up?
  • That I remembered to “paint” myself toward the porch door so I was not stranded on the deck until it dried.
  • Coffee, ’nuff said.
  • Wine, see above.

So, my thanks to all – and one last grateful thought about all those leaves that fell during my project: At least it wasn’t snow.

14 thoughts on “Finished! An exercise in gratitude

  1. La Fanciulla del West!! Sweet. Hope you enjoyed it. I’m part of the .25%. I remember seeing the Hal Prince production at the Chicago Lyric back in 1978. Carol Neblett sang the Minnie and Carlo Cossutta sang Dick Johnson. In an odd twist of fate, we became friends with Carol some years later. Congrats on your deck project.


    1. Ah, a fellow opera-goer! I wish this production had played Minnie a little more like a feisty saloon girl, but good overall. If you feel like a road trip, check out the upcoming production of The Manchurian Candidate. The last time this pair wrote a premiere for the MN Opera, the composer won a Pulitzer for it.


  2. Those leaves are beautiful. You know, I love opera. And Rossini? He’s my main main (actually, I have a few composers that I love, he’s one of them – Mozart, Puccini, Donizetti, Offenbach, Bellini all them dudes too!).


    1. Oh, thank you! I would have taken a picture of the whole deck if there weren’t so much detritus sitting around it right now. Looked a little too much like the “before” segment of a reality show titled something like “Yard Disasters”.


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