The Grateful Ornament

This is the time of year when everyone is running madly around trying to get things done in preparation for the holidays. In other words, it’s a stressful time. Right? To be honest, this year has actually been more stressful than most for me, whether it be good stress or bad stress, but through it all, I’ve been reminded how important it is to just stop for a few minutes to reflect on how fortunate I am.

No matter how good things are, they can always be better. No matter how bad things are, they can always be worse. But, I think the key to surviving it all comes from deciding what things are worth dealing with and what are not and to pay special attention to those things that edify one’s life over those that do not. Life is too short to waste on negativity. As a result of all this thinking, I decided to make a virtual, all-important ornament for my Christmas tree this year. It started out as a clear ball and developed from there. I named it, the “grateful ornament.”

To me, the “grateful ornament” has many layers. In its core is LOVE; that I picture as molten, ready to flow and seep into any space no matter how small or large. Surrounding this center are smaller layers that contain things like PATIENCE, FORGIVENESS and UNDERSTANDING. The outside of this ornament consists of a rich, glossy covering of KINDNESS that glows and pulses and is mixed with a multicolored, bumpy HAPPINESS, whose appearance reflects the favorite color of whomever is beholding it. But the wonderful thing about this ornament is that it has a magical quality that makes those who gaze upon it―full of HOPE and ASSURANCE that every year can be experienced with these wondrous qualities.

So my dear readers, this year I encourage you all to join me as I place the “grateful ornament” on my Christmas tree, front and center and you place your “grateful ornament,” on your tree, as well. As we race against time to get all things accomplished before year’s end, may we have the grace of gratefulness and so much more to carry us through. I wish you a Merry Christmas and a very ornamental new year!



Coco Ihle is the author of SHE HAD TO KNOW, an atmospheric traditional mystery set mainly in Scotland. Join her here each 11th of the month.


Filed under How To, life, musings

12 responses to “The Grateful Ornament

  1. Art

    Thank you. I look forward to put our ornament on our tree this year.

  2. kathy

    Well Said! I am glad I took the time to read your blog this month! Gratefulness is one of the most important feelings we can keep in our heart but it is remembering to put it in our head that is the struggle. But when you do you are rewarded with God’s grace!

    • Thank you, Kathy. Did you know there’s a biblical test for knowing whether or not your heart is in the right place. There is a scripture that says, “Out of the mouth the heart speaks.” So when my words don’t line up the way I want, I go and work on my heart. It feels so cleansing and helps so much. I hope you and your whole family have a wonderful Christmas filled with His blessings!

  3. Susan Coggins

    Excellent reminder!

  4. Renee Latty

    You have made me pause and take time to start a list of things I’m very grateful for both now and in the past! What a wonderful reminder. My list will continue!

  5. What a wonderful tradition! Merry Christmas, Coco!

  6. Wishing you a merry Christmas, and grateful for your post. Thank you.

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