The Arizona Gratitude List

Once a year we all gather to give thanks for what we have. The day before we shove other people out of the way to buy new things to be thankful for.

But that’s at the end of the year. Why not at the beginning? In the spirit of this thought, here in the month of January, I have made a list of all the things I am thankful for since our move to Arizona at the end of last year.

  1. Cactus

Cactus (cacti?) are just plain cool. As someone who has never lived in an arid climate before, there is just a novelty about them. The variety of shapes and sizes, lights hung on them at Christmas (which takes a brave person judging from the pointy aspect), finding out you can’t cut one down, they are a unique feature of the landscape and a cool part of the desert.

  1. Accessible Interstates

When we lived in PA, we had to drive almost 30 minutes to get to the nearest interstate, and then you had to pay for the privilege of driving on it. You never really realize how nice it is to drive faster than 45 mph until you spend over two years getting stuck behind Amish buggies.

  1. Food

It’s so nice when my husband and I want to go out to have more than a couple of choices. We are thankful for a large city with many of our favorite restaurants and even more new places to explore. We even got the opportunity to rekindle an old birthday tradition: Dave and Buster’s.

  1. Open Minded Discussion

It’s been a long time since I’ve been able to drop the “oh we aren’t having kids” in a conversation and not have it followed with “What? Why? You’ll change your mind…” or something to that effect. Instead, it’s followed with the proper “Oh that’s cool” and the conversation continues.

Or the productive conversation my coworkers and I had about Trump, religion, and politics the other day. I should add the people represented here include three different ethnicities, religious backgrounds and beliefs. The same goes for the opportunity my boss and I had to have a conversation about guns, carry permits, etc. We listened to each other, talked, educated, and both learned in the process.

  1. Opportunity

I started counting how many jobs I have applied for in my search here, and it’s up to at least 20 at this point. That was depressing, for a moment, until I realized that that means there were 20 open opportunities. And more come up almost every day. There is so much more opportunity out here, and I am thankful that there are so many opportunities here for me to apply for.

  1. Shopping Options

Not having to drive over an hour to find a real mall has been amazing. I am not a shopaholic by any means, but when you need something, it’s great to not have to plan an entire day around going to get it.

  1. Culture

After a two year hiatus, it has been wonderful to get back into ballet accompanying. I am thankful to be living in a city with so many different types of arts available. From chamber music, to opera, to the ballet, anything we could possibly be interested in is available here in Phoenix.

There are other things I notice almost every day, but these are the ones that spring to mind immediately. It’s been a great experience living here so far.

But…come ask me again in July.


One thought on “The Arizona Gratitude List

  1. This is a great place to live. A little warm (hot) in the summer, but I really don’t mind that either when the rest of the eight and half months provide great weather.


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