The Gratitude Series

The Gratitude Series – Introducing Denyse Whelan

November 2, 2017
Taking stock

Gratitude Series

I’m excited today to introduce my first guest in The Gratitude Series.  Denyse Whelan, from Denyse Whelan Blogs is a very special and inspirational lady who I met earlier this year through her weekly link up.  Denyse keeps us on our toes with writing prompts for each Monday’s link up and is such a gentle and warm soul.

Recently, Denyse faced some major health challenges in her life and has been such an inspiration to us all with her positive attitude and determination.  Successfully recovering Denyse has much to be grateful for and shares her thoughts with us.  I would encourage you to also check out Denyse’s website and follow her on social media especially if you are needing a little daily inspiration.

There Is Something About Gratitude.

It makes me take a few seconds each day to consider what I may be grateful for and to articulate this or write about them.

Like some people these days I have a gratitude journal. It is not a hand-written journal though. It is an app and it even reminds me every day to write something in the journal.

To come up with 3 things I am grateful for.

Some weeks and days I excel at this and on others I tend to ignore the message because I am:

  • Too busy
  • Not motivated
  • Already have done more writing in an on-line diary

So, when Sue asked me to write about gratitude I said ‘yes’ but then for a while I let the topic drift in and out of my mind as lately I have been writing about “Why I am Grateful” posts here, here and here.

I felt a bit empty of gratitude after those so I reviewed what is now said about gratitude in a way to re-connect and feel EACH day what gratitude might be like for me. I want to re-connect with my gratitude app so I went to some real life and on-line resources:

I asked my husband what he thought gratitude was and he answered:

“Not what I am grateful for but what do I feel grateful for”.

That made sense to me and maybe answered my unasked question of why I let writing in my on-line journal go. I need to make my gratitude posts more about how I feel rather than just doing a checklist!

I went looking further into ‘keeping a gratitude journal’

“Be aware of your feelings and how you “relish” and “savor” this gift in your imagination. Take the time to be especially aware of the depth of your gratitude”.

Then I found this brilliant piece relating to mindfulness, our five senses and gratitude. That really raised my level of interest too.

Through our senses—the ability to touch, see, smell, taste, and hear—we gain an appreciation of what it means to be human and of what an incredible miracle it is to be alive. Seen through the lens of gratitude, the human body is not only a miraculous construction, but also a gift.”

Finally, this. It makes so much sense. Every.Single.Day. I can be grateful and accept the many gifts and blessings coming my way. It is said, in today’s less happy world that there is not much to be grateful for…but maybe we are looking at the world in a masked way.

Let’s check out the sunshine, the rain after a hot day, the cuddle from a grandchild, the warmth of the cup of tea, the coolness of the ocean wave across our feet and the smell of newly mown lawn.

“If gratitude is a state of being that is essential to a life well lived, why then, in modern times, do we not cultivate and express it on a daily basis?  After all, giving thanks and expressing appreciation for the blessings and gifts of life is a natural human response.  Perhaps the key reason we do not make gratitude a part of our daily lives is that the accelerated pace and multiple distractions of modern life have simply made it all too easy to forget gratitude’s importance”.

And if anything was going to convince me, it was this. Why not say out loud (or to myself as a quiet reflection) what I am grateful for each evening after my day. If I want to, of course I could write in the journal app as well, but I have found the few times I have tried to say what I am grateful for that day it has settled me for a good night’s rest. I have used my fingers to do this…5 or 10…or as few as I like.

Meet Denyse


Denyse Whelan is a retired school principal and teacher, who lives with her husband on the Central Coast of NSW. She has been blogging here,  since 2010. She is a mother and grandmother and spends more of her days doing art and creative pursuits along with taking photos.

Denyse is currently recovering from a bout with cancer and seems to be winning! Her mouth has been re-constructed and she is patiently waiting until next year to get her full smile back!

Follow Denyse

Website:  Denyse Whelan Blogs

Twitter: @denysewhelan1

Instagram: @denysewhelan


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  • Reply Donna November 2, 2017 at 13:41

    Hi, Sue – Thank you so much for introducing us to Denyse. You are right — she is incredibly inspirational!
    I have recently set up a new ‘Gratitude Board’ on Pinterest. I have included Denyse’s post there.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric November 7, 2017 at 11:34

      Hi Donna, Denyse is a beautiful soul so I was happy to introduce her and her inspirational story. Thanks so much for pinning. x

    • Reply Denyse Whelan November 13, 2017 at 21:14

      Thank you for your kind words. Denyse

  • Reply Jean | November 5, 2017 at 02:27

    Sue and Denyse, these are great reminders. And I like the subtle distinction Denyse’s husband made. Warm wishes.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric November 7, 2017 at 11:33

      Thanks Jean! Denyse has certainly been through a lot but her husband is very supportive. They have a strong relationship which is important. Have a lovely week and thanks for stopping by.

    • Reply Denyse Whelan November 13, 2017 at 21:15

      Thank you so much Jean.

  • Reply Leslie Clingan November 5, 2017 at 15:22

    So pleased to meet you, Denyse. Interested in following your Monday writing prompts and hopefully joining in with you.

    I read somewhere that thinking of your “gratefuls” before bed was a great way to wind down the day. The article suggested having a gratitude stone on the nightstand beside the bed. And the rub the stone while thinking of three things (or more/less) for which you were grateful. I would do it and then pass the stone to my hubs and he would do it, too.

    I think it’s time to reinstitute this activity.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric November 7, 2017 at 11:32

      Denyse is lovely Leslie and yes join her link up. I love the idea you mentioned about rubbing the stone while thinking of three things to be grateful for. Great to see hubby involved too! Have a beautiful day my friend. x

    • Reply Denyse Whelan November 13, 2017 at 21:16

      That is an awesome idea and thank you for your kind words! My link up runs every Monday & I welcome all bloggers! The prompts are optional too.

      • Reply Leslie Clingan November 14, 2017 at 13:33

        Shoot, I missed the link-up today. Dad gum it. Will aim for next Monday. 🙂

  • Reply Leanne | crestingthehill November 7, 2017 at 11:15

    Lovely to read a bit more from Denyse – I always enjoy her blog posts and her approach to dealing with this cancer scare. Life likes to throw us the occasional curve ball and how we handle it says a lot about who we are as a person and what our core values are – Denyse always shines 🙂

    • Reply Sue Loncaric November 7, 2017 at 11:30

      Hi Leanne, yes Denyse is an inspiration. It must have been such a worrying time for her but fortunately with a good outcome. Have a great week and catch up soon. xx

    • Reply Denyse Whelan November 13, 2017 at 21:17

      Thank you dear Leanne! I have been remiss in not stopping by here till tonight! Denyse x

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