Freeze column: What I am thankful for

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Last year on Thanksgiving, I mentioned just a few things that were important to me. Here is this yearís list:
Iím thankful for people with a sense of humor, certainly more important in tough economic times. Smiling is good for the giver and receiver.
My windmill, which makes the best Christmas display ever with all the lights. And especially to Mike Mangum for doing the high wire act.
People who do what they say they will. Nothing is better than someone who is dependable.
Snowy days. That certain excitement that comes just when we hear the first words of the weather forecast and the resulting anticipation as we look toward the sky.
Readers who enjoy my column and other articles. It is so much fun to write them, but it is even more fun to meet all the people along the way that I get to write about. Thanks to the Post for letting me do it.
Good books. It doesnít always happen, but I try to read a little for personal enjoyment every day. Give the gift of reading to children, and their horizons will be unlimited.
Our favorite sports teams, and eternal optimism. My Yankees, Howard Plattís Redskins, Elaney Hasselmanís Cubs ó we all look forward to the next game and next season.
Coaches who see the big picture, helping youth to realize that competition is a stepping stone. Reid Bradshaw and Rick Roseman figured it out, sending lots of youth off with an appreciation of real life born in healthy competition.
Those who suffer from serious medical issues, yet stay positive and return the kind words and caring to those around them.
The city of Salisbury with another Fit Community designation. An extension of the greenway, a new park and so much more. Running, biking and sports opportunities make Salisbury stand out.
Those who have goals and go after them. Anything from walking a mile to completing an ironman triathlon, be OK with challenging yourself. Moving is improving.
Readers who stop me to ask about my past wives and girlfriends. I never tire of talking about them, even though there are so many. I realize they all had at least a small part in shaping who I am.
IHOP pancakes, farmers markets, and a good run on a chilly morning.
Teachers who genuinely put the children first. Thanks for all the invitations to talk to the kids about writing, reading and fitness.
The United Way, Rowan Helping Ministries, the Salvation Army and many more organizations like them. It seems they are more needed than ever.
Those who volunteer for the above and other services. Many good things wonít happen without volunteers, and the gift of time is something that we can all give.
Special thanks for our military, law enforcement and fire departments. We live in the greatest country of all, due in large part to the sacrifices of these folks.
Holiday traditions that involve friends, neighbors and family, remembering that our faith should be the center of it all. Special thanks to this group who do their best to keep me off the naughty list for another year. Letís make every day be like a holiday.