The reasons I have for being grateful this week: reuniting with my cats, and finding gratitude in the basics we take for granted.Hello everyone! How have you been? It seems like crunch-time is approaching with Thanksgiving being a week away. I still can’t believe it.

Does anyone else feel like there’s no real warm-up to the holidays anymore? Or maybe that was an illusion from being in school…I keep saying, “It doesn’t feel like Thanksgiving/Christmas,” but what does that even mean?

Okay, enough with the pondering. It is what it is. I’m just looking forward to lasagna next week. I convinced my mom not to buy a turkey since it’s only the four of us, and I don’t eat much. (Seriously, a 2 year-old can eat more than me.) It’s not worth the money!

Being Grateful for the Basics

Every now and again, I’ll go back to the basics for this series. While I’m always grateful for my family, friends, and health, the events of last weekend brought that home for me.

I’m conflicted as to how much text I should devote to this, because I don’t believe focusing on the bad (or listening to the news 24/7) helps anything. It breeds so much negativity. I think Tonya said it better than me.

Obviously, what happened is horrible and senseless. It kills me inside to see people out there who don’t hesitate to kill innocents. But completely giving into despair is what they want, and I prefer to focus on what good I can.

It’s for that reason, immediately after everything went down, I began to feel grateful for everything I have. I listened to an interview with a survivor who said she was “lucky” to be alive, and I realized, in a way, we all are.

I’ve shared before that I almost didn’t make it back when I was a baby, as I was born with some odd complications. I took that for granted for a long time, especially during my brooding teenage years (ahem).

Only in the past few years have I fully come to appreciate how precious life is. I know that’s sappy, but there are a million little things that have to happen for us to be here – for the entire world to be as it is today. It’s a little overwhelming to think about, but it fills me with gratitude to get to experience that in some way.

Regardless, every day that we wake up feeling okay is a good day. I’m not a morning person, at all, so sometimes that’s difficult for me to remember, but I urge all of you to stop taking little moments like that for granted. Simple reminders like that can be powerful.

Lastly, we should be grateful for each other. For all the monsters out there, there are beacons of light that outshine them. Strive to be that light, and welcome others into it when they need it.

Work more #gratitude into your life by being grateful for waking up each day Click To Tweet

Being Grateful for my Cat!

All right, enough of the heavy stuff. It feels like I haven’t mentioned my cats here in ages, so here you go!

This past weekend, I finally got to pick up my cat, as my parents were babysitting her while we were away. I didn’t really have the chance to miss her while we were gone, since we were in a different environment.

However, as soon as I got home, I felt lonely! It’s amazing how much of a difference a tiny animal can make in your everyday life, but she makes things so entertaining. I’m glad to have her back.

As for my other cat, we decided to leave her with my parents. She was the “family” cat as we got her together back when I was 18. When my parents moved, we took her in, as we didn’t want her to go through that long drive. Of course, she ended up coming with us when we moved…

We’ve taken them to my parent’s house a few times on longer trips, and they both love going outside on the enclosed porch. We left them there in August when we went to Texas, and I didn’t have the heart to take my other cat away from her little paradise.

She’s perfectly at home with my parents, whereas our little cat is happier with us (apparently she found her place on the BBQ). Plus, they no longer go crazy chasing each other around. I think, at best, they tolerated each other, so it seems like things are better this way.

I know, I sound like a crazy cat lady, but hey. Quality of life is important for our pets. I’m just making sure they’re happy where they are, because they sadly don’t get much of a choice and can’t give their input.

Writing Around the Web

On Young Adult Money, I gave 5 gift ideas perfect for personal finance nerds (like myself), though I had a hard time coming up with them! I wonder if we’re all hard to shop for because we probably don’t want much? It seems like more and more people are going toward minimalism.

I also gave a few tips on how to stick with your debt repayment plan, which can be hard when you’re looking at a timeline of years.

I continued talking about debt on Frugal Rules with why debt shouldn’t be a normal part of your life. I answered one of those survey things while reading an NBC story online, asking what your biggest debt worry is, and the most popular answer was “I don’t worry about debt.” Umm. Considering 8 in 10 people have debt in the US, I find that hard to believe. Or they think it’s a normal part of life, in which case, they should read my post, and then continue on to find out how they can be proactive about paying it off!

On GenFKD, I wrote about the biggest challenge millennials face when saving for the future. Which is pretty much just getting started in the first place, and realizing how important it is!

Let’s end on this note – I’ve been grateful for some inspirational posts lately. I’m trying to make time to read blogs more often, and Kali has been hitting it out of the park (as always). Making Hard Choices and Do You Have Enough? definitely resonated with me. Give them a read!

What are you being grateful for this past week? What are your Thanksgiving plans? Are you going to be one of those crazy people I absolutely don’t envy going out at the crack of dawn on Friday? ;)



  1. Traci November 19, 2015 at 5:04 PM

    This week, I am grateful for Trader Joe’s seasonal drinking chocolate! If you haven’t had it, try it. IF you love rich and extra chocolatey treats, as I do. If not…avoid it. :] Thanksgiving this year is the first that I will be away from my family, but I am still having the traditional turkey and all the fixings. I think it’s totally fine–and fun!–to choose lasagna instead!

    1. Erin M. November 19, 2015 at 9:23 PM

      Ooh … Sadly, I think the closest Trader Joe’s might be 20-30 minutes away, but that sounds yummy! Is it bad to say I don’t like turkey very much? =/ I prefer chicken, haha. My mom might make turkey breast since my dad was a little upset about not having turkey. I hope you enjoy your Thanksgiving – I know it can be hard being away from family.

  2. Tonya@Budget and the Beach November 19, 2015 at 7:33 PM

    I wish I hadn’t read the above comment about the trader joe’s seasonal chocolate! lol! I think we are on the same page regarding what happened last week. I’m happy to see that there seems to be more love spreading around than hate, which is awesome! I’m grateful for opportunity. Now I just have to see where that opportunity lands and takes me! I got invited to an orphan thanksgiving, but honestly I’ll probably just get a whole foods meal and watch movies. I’m doing a turkey trot in the morning and we usually go out for breakfast and mimosa after, so I get my social time in then. Unlike you though I’m a pig and eat a lot on that day. More than one piece of pumpkin pie? I’m pleading the 5th. :)

    1. Erin M. November 19, 2015 at 9:31 PM

      Yes, definitely seems like there’s a lot of love and hugs going around, which is always nice to see! Yay for opportunity! Ahh, I forgot about Turkey Trots. R used to do those back in NY. Breakfast and mimosas after that sound nice. Yep…I’ve never had pumpkin pie before. I don’t know why, pumpkin never appealed to me. BUT, my mom does make chocolate pudding pie, which isn’t very healthy, either. ;)

  3. Sarah November 20, 2015 at 6:47 AM

    Beautiful post, Erin!

    I just did a post on what I’m grateful for, too, and I couldn’t help but stick to the basics. My family is my life, and there is nothing I’m more appreciative of :)

    We just got two kittens!!!! I am totally a cat person but had been living without a cat of my own since I was a kid. I love them so much :) :) :)

    Thanks for the post! I must say, I love that you do these posts – they always lift my spirits :)

    Hope you have a wonderful day and Thanksgiving with your family!

    1. Erin M. November 20, 2015 at 10:32 AM

      I always love seeing other people reflect on what they have to be grateful for. Sometimes, all it takes is the basics!

      Aww, I hope they’re not causing too much trouble for you! My little one was an absolute terror for some reason, but thankfully she’s slowly calming down. Honestly, if I were to adopt another cat (ever), I think I would go older after that experience. ;) After working in an animal shelter, it also saddened me to see the older cats stay there longer because everyone wanted kittens. It’s hard to resist, though.

      I hope you and your family have a Happy Thanksgiving as well!

  4. Cat@BudgetBlonde November 23, 2015 at 12:02 PM

    I can’t believe Thanksgiving is almost here! I do think being in school made time feel a lot different than what it feels like now that we’re adults. I suppose if I worked in an office with a set schedule everyday it might help my time passage awareness too. Sometimes I don’t even know what day of the week it is. :)

    1. Erin M. November 23, 2015 at 1:49 PM

      I’m glad I’m not the only one! I go by dates and deadlines, definitely not days of the week. Everything tends to blur together!

  5. Melanie @ Dear Debt November 23, 2015 at 7:06 PM

    I am grateful to be going home for Thanksgiving and seeing my grandpa for the first time in six years! I’m also grateful for your friendship, my health, and good clients!

    1. Erin M. November 23, 2015 at 11:28 PM

      Yay, so happy for you! I hope you enjoy your time there. It’s always nice to be with family you haven’t seen in a while, especially grandparents. I’m grateful for our chats/vent sessions, health, and understanding clients as well!


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