“My Big Fat Gratitude BLOG?”

I’m weird…

But at least I own it… and I embrace it.  Hopefully you do too, otherwise you wouldn’t be here.

Agreed?  Okay…read on….

Ya’ know that movie, “My Big Fat Greek Wedding?”  I keep thinking about the similarities between that and “Gratitude Addict!”  Once I point them out to you, you will be as stunned as I was to catch the uncanny parallels!

One of my fave characters (my fave is Andrea Martin…she’s a freakin’ riot!) is Toula’s dad, Gus….the owner of the diner, “Dancing Zorbas” (played by Michael Constantine).  He’s so cute and funny and feels like he has ALL the power as the man of the house when really the women just make him THINK he does! lol

One of my fave things about him is how he believes that EVERY word is derived from a Greek word.  There’s one scene where he’s driving a young Toula (his daughter who is embarrassed to be Greek) and her non-Greek friend in the back of his car.  Being the proud Greek man that he is, he challenges the friend to give him a word….ANY word at all….and he will show her how it is derived from a Greek word.

So Toula’s clever friend gives him the word “kimono” which, of course, is NOT in any way, shape, or form derived from a Greek word.  But that doesn’t stop Gus from twisting and turning the word, as so:

“Kimono is come from the Greek word ‘himona’, is mean ‘winter.’  So, what do you wear in the wintertime to stay warm?  A robe.  You see?  ‘robe’, ‘kimono.’  There you go!”

So how does that apply to this site, you ask?

I was thinking about my fave word gratitude.  You know….that word this site is based on?

Since completing my self-imposed, year-long challenge of my “Gratitude Project” last year…I’ve been getting pretty cocky when it comes to gratitude.  I’ve kind of been claiming that I can find the gratitude in just about ANY situation.  Just like Toula’s dad can make any word GREEK…I can turn any situation into a GRATITUDE!

I’ve been strutting my stuff all over town saying things like…

Im wondering if these lovely green foils are a holiday leftover. Kim Bowlby at Artiste…if you are reading this…were you using Christmas leftover foils on my head and, if so, did I get a discount?

“Hey…I’m grateful for this bad-hair day….it makes me appreciate the good-hair days even more!”

Um….yeah…ok, Lauren…..

Or how about this lovely one?

Public Service Announcement: Gratitude Addict does NOT endorse energy drinks or this little mocha deliciousness in a can. Also…this pic was taken on a completely different day than the alleged incident in question so in no way was responsible for my energy levels on the day that I was NOT tailgating.

“Okay, okay…I may have gotten this STUPID TICKET FOR TAILGATING (ticket is true…tailgating is NOT!!!), but I’m grateful that at least I was sober.”

Yes…I’m TOTALLY grateful for my sobriety!  If only this jerk officer of the law had given me a field sobriety test!  I’d be made in the shade!  But…NO…now I have to hire an attorney when he was going 30 in a 45?!!  Gimme a freakin….


hold on…

….all of a sudden this post has taken an angry turn.

Cute little Gus played by Michael Constantine

Another one of Toula’s dad’s little idiosyncracies was that he claimed that spraying a little Windex on various ailments was a cure-all for everything.  He would go around squirting people’s skin rashes and apparently this blue liquid panacea from heaven even got rid of a wedding-day zit on the face of Toula’s husband-to-be, Ian.

Let’s squirt some Windex!!….let’s find one more gratitude here and turn it around..


I’m tellin’ ya….we were separated at birth! (except for the fact that she’s 5’9″ & I’m 5’4″) (and our eye color)(and she was born in 1967 & I was 1969) Other than that we are TWINS!

Okay..I am grateful for my two favorite things right now:  This awesome audiobook given to me by a pal in my online FB chronic pain group written by Lauren Graham (Lorelai from ‘Gilmore Girls’!) who I think may be my long-lost twin as she SHOCKINGLY shares my EXACT same twisted sense of humor.  We do share the same name, after all.

Lauren is just adorable, smart, witty, honest, and a breath of fresh air.  If you’ve loved her in Gilmore Girls or Parenthood…I guarantee that you will love her even more after reading this.

I must alert her that she’s my new bff.  I’ll add that to my ‘to-do’ list for tomorrow…

Need I say more?

And then there are my new sriracha socks.  I don’t think any other explanation is required as to why I’m grateful for them, is there?

So that’s my case for showing you all the super duper crazy similarities between “Gratitude Addict” and “My Big Fat Greek Wedding.”  Just as Gus is able to show how EVERY word is derived from a Greek word…..I am able to turn ANY situation into a gratitude.  Easy peasy…?

I wish you all peace, love, laughs, and gratitude.  And if you’re having a hard time coming up with a gratitude of your own…squirt some Windex on yourself and one will come to you.

Admittedly, I, Lauren Zalewski,(“Jingle Woman”) do not remember this jingle. Do any of you? Check out a very young Steve Guttenberg polishing up the chrome. And HEY!!!  Did that woman just use the same Windex-drenched paper towel she wiped the wall with and then put it on her kid’s face?  Somebody alert DYFS!!!!


Lauren has lived with lupus & fibromyalgia for 18 years & is the founder of the FB group, "Attitude of Gratitude with Chronic Pain (AoG.)" Also a recovering alcoholic, Lauren discovered the power of GRATITUDE during her recovery for that as well as in dealing with her chronic illness. In 2016 she embarked on her "Gratitude Project" by writing an essay on one new thing that she was grateful for every day on Facebook for the entire year. It was that project that sparked the website and she's currently writing a book called "Attitude of Gratitude with Chronic Pain" based on how living with the intention of gratitude has changed her life with chronic pain as well as the lives of the thousands of members of AoG. Lauren also sits on the Board of Trustees and is Social Media Coordinator for Chronic Pain Anonymous. #GetYourGratitudeOn


  • Lucia

    OMG, I’m smiling after reading this!!
    I never would’ve gotten the correlation between the movie & gratitude….so I’ll leave things like that, to you!

    Just delightful, thank you Lauren. The socks putr over the edge! Hahahehe ??’d it! ?
    (I’m a fan of the movie and the follow up is on my DVR, to be watched soon!!). Strut your stuff woman!!!

  • Denise

    Once again Lauren, you have made my day! I love your wit you’re a comical genius in my book. You definitely mean the world to me! Your gratitude project was a win-win for everyone! And I’m loving your blog! I hope you have a loving peaceful and great day! I love you!

  • Bill Wyrebek

    Hello Lauren, It has been many years since I have seen you and yet one of my fondest memories was playing croquet with you and your sister in my rustic back yard. I am greatful that you have found a positive endeavor that helps you every day. You should be proud of what you are accomplishing and the role model that you have become for others that share your pain. I am proud of you and wish you continued positive experiences and many more reasons to be grateful.

    • Lauren

      Uncle Bill!!! Thank you for reading my site!!! I remember that croquet game so well and I remember being covered in bug bites!!! Good times (despite the bug bites..) Thank you for your kind words. My love to you & Nancy. xoxo

  • Kristen

    Hey would you mind stating which blog platform you’re working with?
    I’m looking to start my own blog soon but I’m having a difficult time making a
    decision between BlogEngine/Wordpress/B2evolution and Drupal.
    The reason I ask is because your design and style seems different then most blogs and I’m looking for something
    completely unique. P.S My apologies for getting off-topic but I had to

      • Lauren

        Kristen, I should mention that I, too, was looking for something unique. I spent an entire month (no joke!) scouring the different themes and platforms and was not finding what I was looking for. All of the female blogs were these flowery, feminine, pink things that, although pretty, just weren’t what I was looking for.

        And I never did find it. So I’ve been spending the last 3 months building my own basically. I use WordPress with a Divi theme. I liked how customizable Divi was. Technically I use the Astra child theme of Divi, but there really is zero that resembles that anymore other than the blog module. It’s just been months of trial and error and tweaking to what I like. Good luck!

  • Russ Tejada

    Excellent pieces. Keep writing!
    I will certainly dig it and will personally recommend to my friends. I’m sure they will all benefit.