smile…and make a thank you journal

by Holly on December 27, 2011

in gluten-free,happiness,randomness,recipes,snacks,vegan

If you do one thing this week, you should probably make a thank you journal.

Ever since I turned an old Lisa Frank notebook* into “My Thank You Journal,” my life has been filled with more smiles. Small smiles…ear-to-ear smiles…sly smiles…smiles accompanied by obnoxious guffaws…content smiles…smiles where I don’t even realize I’m smiling!

You may even venture to call the vast increase in smiles statistically significant…and I blame it all on the thank you journal. It so damn infectious. Writing down things you’re thankful for can’t NOT put a smile on your face. I mean, I’m smiling just writing about smiling as a result of smiling from the inception of this thank you journal idea.

All it takes is two words: THANK you. Thank YOU. THANK YOUUUU.

So simple, yet so underused…until today.

Thank you to my frizzy, curly-haired mop. Even if you make me look like an electrocuted version of Medusa some days, I can go without washing you for a week, style you in less than two minutes and never tell if you have split ends or not.

Thank you to sparkling water. You saved me from Diet Coke.

Thank you to my amazing, hilarious + inspiring blog readers who wished me a happy 27th birthday AND congratulations on going back to school. You are the best.

Thank you spicy cinnamon candles. You make my danky, uncleaned apartment smell so pretty.

Thank you Chobani for making Greek yogurt that comes in 32-ounce containers. Sadly, I still go through your jumbo tubs in mere days.

Thank you to quarters. You are so much better than pennies, dimes and nickels.

Thank you Jake Gyllenhaal for staying single at age 31 so you can meet your Everythingtarian soulmate and make cute blue-eyed babies with heads of kinky, crazed curls. Sorry about the hair – unfortunately, I can’t change genetics.

Thank you cold Wisconsin winters. I rarely have to shave my legs because of you.

Thank you to my best friend Ashley for sending me a birthday card with a clown eating a hot dog and an inappropriately phallic message inside. It was the creepiest card I’ve ever received…in a good way.

Thank you to the three anonymous donors who each gave more than $100 and ALL the donors to our Haiti Medical Mission of Wisconsin fundraiser. I am so humbled.

Thank you to myself for not owning a scale. The month of December thanks you for it.

And a very special thank you goes out to tofu, the slightly scary-looking soy product that is giving me a much-needed respite from the meat devouring going on as of late: whole roast chickens, eating a roast beef sandwich for Christmas Eve dinner at Arby’s and the pans of lightened-up buffalo chicken dip I have sitting in my fridge (<- recipe to come!).

*And yes, I actually found an old Lisa Frank notebook of mine…I know you’re jealous.

Tofu Tarragon Dip
Prep time: 10 minutes

2 (12-oz) packages silken tofu, drained
2 T white wine vinegar
1/2 T olive oil
juice of 1/2 lemon
1 t minced garlic
1 small onion, finely diced
2 T fresh tarragon, julienned
salt + pepper, to taste
carrots, celery, pita chips and/or pretzels, for dipping

In a food processor or blender, puree tofu, vinegar, olive oil, lemon juice and garlic until smooth. Pour into a medium bowl, and fold in onion and tarragon. Salt + pepper, to taste. Refrigerate overnight to let flavors soak in. Eat with your choice of dippers.

Makes 3 1/2 cups

Finish this sentence: Thank you to _________________. Remember, sharing is caring!


Evan Thomas December 27, 2011 at 9:40 pm

Thank you for being a friend. Your heart is true, you’re a pal and a confidant. And if you threw a party and invited everyone you knew, you would see the biggest gift would be from me and the card attached would say “Thank you for being a friend”

I just made that up off the top of my head.

Linda December 27, 2011 at 9:48 pm

LOVE this!! I did a “thankful” post on FB every day for 30days and it was nice to sit and think about all of the things I am thankful for. Most days it was so easy (I do have a lot to be thankful for)……and then I had a couple of days where I struggled a little. I just kicked myself in the butt and thought about all of the people in the world who definitely had it a lot worse than me. I really have nothing to complain about. :) I love the idea of a Thank You Journal!! I think I will dust off my old journals and get to writing!!
Happy (belated) Birthday!!!!! And I love that Jake Gyllenhall is waiting for you! He’s a lucky guy!!! ;)

Thank you to my coworkers for an amazing ramen lunch today!! :)

Allison (Allison's Delicious Life) December 27, 2011 at 10:10 pm

I love the idea of a thank you journal and I’m going to start one myself!

I thought “lisa frank” sounded so familiar; must be some fancy notebook… I clicked on the link and burst into laughter. I remember those!! I had so many.

Jessica December 27, 2011 at 10:30 pm

Thank you for being you!!! We need to hang out more. I’m going to make this a New Year’s resolution. Details to follow.

Oh and thank you WhatsApp – the greatest app ever for allowing to text cute Irish boys for free while they are home for Christmas. Um yes. I will tell you more later. :)

Lauren December 28, 2011 at 5:54 am

I just love this idea and I just love you. :) I am so thankful for you and your inspiring posts.

Amber December 28, 2011 at 6:34 am

Thank you to you Ms. Holly! You have been making me smile and laugh since the good ole days of district 196 figure skating club!

Erica December 28, 2011 at 7:02 am

umm yah, I was a Lisa Frank freak when I was a kid. I couldn’t get enough. I used to use the notebooks to pretend I was a secretary taking important meeting notes. It is good to sit down and really think about all of the wonderful things in your life. Chobs would make my list too! I’m most thankful for my healthy little peanut :)

Hillary December 28, 2011 at 7:58 am

I kept a thank you journal for an entire semester in college. I don’t remember why I gave it up, but I do remember that I loved it. Thank you for giving me the idea to possibly start it up again. If I can find an old Lisa Frank notebook of mine, that would just be the cherry on top ; )

Suzanne December 28, 2011 at 8:10 am

Girl, this post has just made my day! Thank you so very much for being such a wonderful person!

Mackenzie @ Whatever, Gatsby December 28, 2011 at 10:09 am

i like to make it a point to say thank you to the little things i pass by….outloud. as in “THANK YOU LAMP POST. BECAUSE YOU ALLOW ME TO PARK MY BIKE WHEREVER I WANT”.

yeah. about that. this actually might explain a lot of my boy problems.

Elizabeth December 28, 2011 at 10:35 am

I just wrote all my Thank You cards from Christmas and that put a smile on my face! Amen to curly hair – for ease of styling & very rarely needing to be washed or brushed or product. Actually I hate washing my hair, it takes longer than anything else in the shower.

Merry Christmas Holly!! And Thank You for writing a funny, entertaining, relatable blog. :)

Lindsey December 28, 2011 at 4:18 pm

So I don’t really read many food blogs anymore, though I can’t stop reading yours. Awesome sense of humor and thoughts, I always enjoy them.

So thank you for writing such original witty posts!

Lindsay @ Lindsay's List December 28, 2011 at 7:19 pm

Thank you to Holly for creating not 1, but 2 amazing headers for me!! I’ll forever be in your debt. I’ll try to start hacking away at that debt next May with a round of sassy shots at a skanky Boulder bar.

Jamie @ Don't Forget the Cinnamon December 28, 2011 at 8:32 pm

Thank you to YOU for suggesting a thank you journal. I love love love this idea!!

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