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My friend Meredith writes for Serial Optimist and has featured one of my photos in her recent article celebrating fall colors caught on Instagram. How I feel as a result of discovering my picture has been selected makes me feel thankful, a fitting sentiment for the month leading us to Thanksgiving.

I appreciate the recognition. Coincidentally, it involves a symbolism of surroundings taken for granted. These trees stand across the street from my work; I see them every day, drive by them. I even face them when I occasionally report for duty early enough to watch the sunrise. Yet I don’t often take in their natural beauty. Sometimes it takes special lighting to highlight the everyday quality.

All too often this happens in relationships with people as well. I have recently felt unappreciated, maybe more accurately unnoticed. Sometimes a simple thank you makes people feel their worth. In the last couple days, I have seen my photo appear in a special collection, and Lee Strobel, the author of The Case For Faith, the book I just finished, thanked me via Twitter for the recognition I gave him. It goes both ways. Even expressing thanks for seemingly expected or typical behavior reminds people that we care, that we notice.

As we continue to set aside time to contemplate which people, objects, and ideas for which we give thanks, let’s remember to show and tell people that we appreciate them. Let’s be thankful for the everyday details. Simply say, “Thank you.”

For a little inspiration on being thankful for nature during fall, check out “Favorite Fall Colors of Instagram” from Serial Optimist.

Feel free to follow my Instagram as well to see more of my photos. I enjoy my mornings and coffee and post several mug shots with positive notes to embrace the day.