Elan Morgan is a writer and web designer who works from Elan.Works, a designer and editor at GenderAvenger, and a speaker who has spoken across North America. They believe in and work to grow both personal and professional quality, genuine community, and meaningful content online.

Grace In Small Things: A Challenge For All Of Us

Although I have written entries here aimed at focusing solely on the positive before ("1000 Words About Things I Love", for example), I tend to bristle at the idea of imposing anything remotely pollyannaish on myself as a regular practice.

Too much niceness in others tends to bring out adverse reactions in this Schmutzie. Something about sweetness lined with naïveté makes me want to turn into a shin-kicking, hair-pulling schoolyard bully. I don't, of course, because I recognize that no matter how nauseasly saccharine I find a the-glass-is-completely-full view of the world, I recognize the beauty hiding in the idealism, and it is alluring.

When my counsellor brought up the idea of keeping a gratitude journal this morning, visions of Oprah had me doing my typical bristle routine, but I could see that she had a point, and since growing evermore bitter and prickly has not been doing much for me lately, I decided to taker her up on it.

The world we live in is loud and harsh and bright and demanding, and it is easy to slide into a less than thoughtful survival mode in which we do what we have to do to make it through the day with the least amount of strife possible. This robs us of the time and energy to be mindful of ourselves and those we love and to recognize the grace that exists in small things.

It is with this thought that I am beginning one year of posts called "Grace In Small Things". Every day for 365 days, I will post a list of five things that have graced my life, either on that day or at any time in my life. Feel free to join me. Or mock me. Or, you know, do whatever's in your heart. You can start on whatever day you want, so if you come across this six months from now, don't let that hold you back.

I have even used the Official Seal Generator to create a badge for this project in case anyone wants to join me. Just copy the code below your chosen seal size and paste it into your entries or your weblog's sidebar.


<a href="http://graceinsmallthings.ning.com/" title="Grace in Small Things"><img src="http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v491/schmutzie_pickles/buttons/seal.gif" style="border:0px;" /></a>


<a href="http://graceinsmallthings.ning.com/" title="Grace in Small Things"><img src="http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v491/schmutzie_pickles/buttons/seal-1.gif" style="border:0px;" /></a>


<a href="http://graceinsmallthings.ning.com/" title="Grace in Small Things"><img src="http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v491/schmutzie_pickles/buttons/seal-2.gif" style="border:0px;" /></a>

I am going to start this project tomorrow, and this is the perfect time of year for me do it, because I hate the Christmas season. I hate cranberries, fruit cakes, Christmas shopping, too many family members in one house without alcohol, and seasonal television specials, and this little project will help keep my mid-winter teeth-grinding in check. As will some good liquor. And my lovely counsellor, Madame B, who brought this project up in the first place.

UPDATE: Grace in Small Things has a social network, so come on over, check us out, and join in!

Grace in Small Things screenshot

Grace In Small Things: Part 1 of 365

Running Around The Internets