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TToT: Stoking The Fires and Fanning The Flames, #WorldKindnessDay #Armistice100 #TToT

You do not have to be good. You do not have to walk on your knees for a hundred miles through the desert repenting. You only have to let the soft animal of your body love what it loves. Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine. Meanwhile the world goes on. Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain are moving across the landscapes, over the prairies and the deep trees, the mountains and the rivers. Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air, are heading home again. Whoever you are, no matter how lonely, the world offers itself to your imagination, calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting – over and over announcing your place in the family of things.

—Mary Oliver

I may have used this quote in one of these already, but I like it so much and am using it again.

On Remembrance Day, here in Canada, I pause for silent reflection. Then, I get pissed off.

I’m supposed to feel gratitude and I do, but I look at all the sacrifice and I can’t help seeing waste. Of course, we wouldn’t have the peace we now have if it weren’t for the actions of so many, but I am angry and can’t feel grateful that mankind continues to get itself into ugly, awful wars.

We teach our children to share, to play nice, and to work it out. Yet, adults repeatedly let greed and lack of compassion and a sense of entitlement for what they may have get the better of them. Nationalism is dangerous, while patriotism even gets stuck in my throat sometimes. I am thankful for peace and for Canada, but I see the wider world in pictures, clearly with borders and laws and still I look for more common decency in the face of the things we all deal with.

I’ve been away from
Ten Things of Thankful
for a month at least. I am returning, on this day in particular, because I am still thankful for so much.

Remembrance Day makes me more mad than anything, overshadowing my gratitude. I take peace for granted too, in my own way. I am sick and tired of conflicts and battles because there’s endless suffering and a long lasting mark is left on nations and on their people.

It’s still going on. Maybe not at a world level at this moment, but there’s no guarantee that things won’t worsen into more widespread destruction.

Saying all that…

I’m thankful for all the kindnesses I’m seeing. I’m thankful for those putting out the fires and those celebrating and highlighting peace.

Armistice Day: moving events mark 100 years since end of first world war – as it happened

I am thankful for the live performances, those willing to play their music on stage, and discovering new music.


These are Moscow Apartment and they are a young duo, two amazing musical girls from Toronto who are so musically accomplished at such a young age. I was so impressed.

Teenagers. I can still relate and empathize so much with that time of life, even as I approach my 35th birthday this February.

I am thankful for
Women’s Travel Fest
and my trip to New York in March. The prospect gives me something to look forward to in the new year.

It will be a challenge for me, traveling to New York City for this conference, but I need to keep on taking chances and going on adventures. I can sometimes get so down on the things I don’t have and focusing on things I do have makes it tolerable.

I’m thankful for my sister, who helps me go jean shopping and writing up invoices for my freelance writing work.

I am thankful for a six-week storytelling workshop. It’s getting me out of my comfort zone.

I’m thankful for a
fantasticly fun friend
on our latest podcast episode.

I’m thankful for the opportunity to talk about the issues of
accessibility, equality, and advocacy
on the radio.

So there’s so much going on and I’m just barely catching up, but I always swore this TToT was a positive thing in my life, getting me focusing on the good things. I wanted to return and I wish I hadn’t been gone for so long.

I’m thankful for this gratitude journal of sorts and everyone who has ever run it or participated in it.


RIP Stan Lee.

“It was November–the month of crimson sunsets, parting birds, deep, sad hymns of the sea, passionate wind-songs in the pines. Anne roamed through the pineland alleys in the park and, as she said, let that great sweeping wind blow the fogs out of her soul.”

—L.M. Montgomery


7 thoughts on “TToT: Stoking The Fires and Fanning The Flames, #WorldKindnessDay #Armistice100 #TToT

  1. hey! Kerry… good to see you here at the TToT.
    (Took me a while to get to the bottom of the page for comments. A good sign in a post, lol, liked the video (Moscow Apartment) There is something about some groups (and probably other performers) that seems to stand out in greater contrast when they are just starting out… the un-practiced enthusiasm. Definitely stands out.
    Agree with your thoughts on Armistice Day celebrations….
    Maybe we should consider ‘taking peace for granted’ to be the reasonable thing as opposed to the non-reasonable.
    Having been working on ‘Almira’ and a character goes to Europe towards the end of WWI so I did some research on it… man! Even at a distance of a hundred years and a thousand miles, how awful can man be towards his fellow man.

    I will stop before I go into ‘rant mode’. Glad to have your post to read here at the ‘oT’

  2. Kristi says:

    Welcome back! I’m so glad you joined us; I’ve missed you!
    Have you been to NYC before? Although I wouldn’t want to live in such a big city, I have enjoyed visits there. Will you be able to attend any Broadway (or off-Broadway) shows while you are there?

    • I missed you too. Glad to be back.

      I was in NYC once, in 2004 or so, for the May long weekend. I went on a road trip from my home in Ontario to Manhattan. It was a lot of fun, lots to squeeze into 72 hours or so it was, but there’s a lot going on there for sure. It will be interesting to revisit all these years later.

  3. Pat Brockett says:

    A world without the repetition of wars.. . This pattern of repetitious wars and all that leads up to them is so discouraging. When will we as a society ever learn not to repeat the actions that lead us into this vicious cycle.
    It is so good to read another TToT post from you. Welcome back!
    I so enjoy reading your quotations from Mary Oliver and from L. M. Montgomery.
    The Travel Fest for Women sounds like it will be fun and very informative.
    I have been so impressed by all that you are achieving in your life and the impact you are having on society.

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