I just read this article in the Washington Post. I like it. And while I am not sure if 95% of what I do as a parent is thankless, it's certainly closer to 100% than 50%. The article talks about saying "yes" more often, and making the 5% (the thankFUL) part worth it. I suppose it's all just good to be more mindful - say yes to something different, step out of the routine, because isn't it interesting when your child recalls something from a year or more ago that had little impact on YOU, but still makes them smile? Not even the big ticket items. Not the trip to Great Wolf Lodge (although those definitely fall into the 5%!!), but the little things - Tate loves to take an unplanned walk around our little town. Both kids seldom walk Spud with me, but on a beautiful fall day, we'll go and play Monsters and Zombies at the park with the dog chasing us, and every time we do it, they recall the last time. I have no doubt they'll remember our ginko tree with the yellow puddle of leaves every fall.
Or saying yes to a $2 turn in the Hurricane tunnel at the mall. Still talked about (obviously).