We often take for granted the very things that most deserve our gratitude.

Cynthia Ozick

Sometimes we find ourselves feeling so comfortable that we take the most basic aspects of life for granted. Novelist and essayist Cynthia Ozick tackled this feeling in her 1984 essay, "The Riddle of the Ordinary." In it, she pointed out the paradoxical way we experience extraordinary versus ordinary things: "The Extraordinary does not let you walk away and shrug your shoulders. But the Ordinary is a much harder case," she wrote. "In the first place, by making itself so noticeable — it is around us all the time — the Ordinary has got itself in bad fix with us: we hardly ever notice it." Ozick’s observation reminds us to treat everything — including the ordinary things — with gratitude.