⚽ 10 Things Grateful, plus extra soccer #gratitudeandshit

stormtrooper r2 may 17 needed it acn

We made it!

After a season of grit and a whoopin’ or two, we made the state playoffs. They assigned us in Round 1 to a remote outpost: East Wilkes. That’s in Ronda, N.C. That’s not a lady, that’s a town, although there was probably a handful of women named Ronda about.

We lost 8-4 in a crazy match that included eight goals from one player – and a view into the valley so breathtaking that I said, Damn, son, that’s a helluva view you guys have up here to the kid serving as ball-boy for the match.

I was grateful for one last game. I was grateful Remmi made it, hobbling in on crutches but in good spirits. I was grateful we fought back to within three, twice. I was grateful for the annoying siren they turn on when they score only rang out … well, eight times.

I was grateful that when it was over, the girls seemed pretty pissed.

We’d missed that this season. We were a little too happy-go-lucky when giving up 10 goals in a game. Knowing we could have won this one 12-8, girls started talking about when we could start training again. Lord willing, I can’t wait to join them.

What else am I grateful for? #gratitudeandshit is a great thing, friends. Let’s explore.

panthers nfl 2018 gametime bank of america stadium press box
Is it NFL season yet?

1-Hope. For more goals. For another chance. For progress. For strength through adversity. For adversity, even. For online pizza coupons and cupcakes for someone’s birthday. For sales on soccer balls and unexpected Saturdays off.

2-A comfy chair for my morning meditation. A salt lamp to soften the mood. Birds right outside, who even drone out the whining dogs and backing-up trucks. For comfort so good I could almost fall asleep sitting up.

3-Patience. I know I have a long way to go. I know not all answers come when we want them. It isn’t easy to turn the other way and occupy yourself with what’s here, now, but it’s possible. Probable, even. This post is proof of it.

virginia belk bowl 2019 bowl season bank of america stadium
Must have football on my mind.

4-Connection. It’s come up before. But I don’t pine for what isn’t there. There’s so much possible in your every day, even if the connection isn’t with someone else, but with nature. Or stillness. Or yourself. Or the natural stillness in yourself.

5-Opportunities to become valued at work. There’ve been rough moments in my year here. I’ve been resolved to keep my head down, work hard, and bring my best. Nothing is ever guaranteed, but I finish this week feeling good again about what I contributed.

6-Reconnecting with friends. Sometimes it’s in big ways and other times small. Sometimes it’s for the long haul; other times, the bond fades as easily as it returned. Each time, I feel like it’s doing just what it was intended to do.

me uptown 2018 pretty charlotte
Such a pretty city. #clt

7-A day off to rest and recoup. They don’t come often. And usually, I jam them up with other stuff to do. But that’s my choice. Jammed up with stuff you choose just has a different flavor to it. Like, light on calories without tasting like it’s light on calories.

8-Leftover candy. I found some from Easter. Score! And for some reason, Hayden’s not eating her chocolate bunny. I mean, what’s a dad to do? I didn’t hunt that thing down for it to go to waste. A dad’s gotta do what a dads gotta do.

9-Car conventions with Camdyn. It’s been a while, but it reminds me of stuff I used to do with my dad. All three of the girls have accompanied me. It kind of feels like dad’s around when we all go too. I can dig that.

hayden me 2018 hornets game spectrum center
Me and Hayden after a Hornets game.

10-The pizza Madison gave me. It’s pizza. That says it all. It was also Totino’s, on a day I was running around and didn’t have time for food. I took her to work, and she came to the car with my favorite pizza ever. Know what’s better than Totino’s? Totino’s with love.

What about you? What happened to make you wear that #gratitudeandshit grin lately?


beecher quote gratitude.png


  1. Congratulations on making it to the playoffs, and i hope the girls keep that “when can we start again” attitude.

    An unexpected Saturday off is a dream come true.

    Food served with love is the best food.

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      I hope so too. Mimi, at the end of the season I always think of those things I could have done better, too. Better focus, better lessons. Better overall self-improvement. I hope I have the opportunity to try all that, because I believe it can make a difference.

      Turns out I looked at the schedule wrong! But I’m off next Saturday.

      Love’s the best ingredient. Right after vanilla and brown sugar.

  2. ksbeth says:

    found easter candy? the best

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      right? stuff doesn’t expire for seven years

  3. All great things to be grateful for.. Have an awesome weekend Eli!~ 😎

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      Thanks, Courtney. I want to delve deeper and diversify a little on the gratitude.

  4. Lauren Becker says:

    That’s awesome they made it to the playoffs! Congrats to them. I really need to try meditating more; I like it when I do it!


    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      I was so proud, Lauren – and they did themselves proud when they got there. I’ve meditated 115 straight days – not to brag – but I feel like my mind and soul are benefitting from it so much.

  5. Anne J. says:

    It’s a great thing to remember to be grateful. Awesome list. I should try it.

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      Sometimes it takes a minute to come up with something, on “those days.” Right Anne? Try one of these posts … and let me know when you have it! Look forward to seeing your blog.

      1. Anne J. says:

        Hi Eli. I might just really give this a go. It’s been a struggle with my creative juices or perhaps, I’m out of gas to keep going. I’ve been seriously considering giving up blogging altogether, but I can’t and won’t. My stubbornness is a blessing and a curse. 😊🤗

      2. Eli Pacheco says:

        Don’t give up. Email me. I have some ideas.

      3. Anne J. says:

        I should… I will. Working on my mobile isn’t as effective as on my laptop. I will do this weekend. *determined*

  6. Felicia says:

    Your meditation routine sounds cozy. And finding Easter candy when you think you had none left is the best!

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      I love it, Felicia – even though yesterday my app wouldn’t work! I would still welcome Valentine’s Day candy, and … who am I kidding/ I wouldn’t turn away leftovers from Halloween, either.

Leave a Comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.