Archive | Inspiration

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Recharging

At the end of last week I was tired.  Not just physically tired but spiritually tired.  I felt as if I was suffocating under a pile of worry.  That feeling of being overwhelmed and anxious was a bit consuming so we took the weekend to recharge.  It is tempting on a long holiday weekend to plan lots of activities, social events and projects.  I knew that going into the weekend we should do none of that and instead take the time to recharge.

So this weekend we spent time porch sitting and napping.  We watched a very schmaltzy movie on the Hallmark channel and the Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt.  We went out to dinner one night, ordered pizza another night and cooked at home.

I was not completely without ambition.  The warm weather and open windows make me want to freshen up things in the house.  So, I washed every piece of bedding on our bed.  I also took summer clothes out of storage which involved more laundry.

I enjoyed a yoga class, got a pedicure and walked barefoot admiring my pretty pink toes.

We took Gatsby for many walks.  Gatsby and I supervised while my husband did a little yard work.  We watched someone else plant our new tree in our back yard.

I cut a few of my newly bloomed peonies to bring in the house and fill the kitchen with their sweet scent (after knocking the ants off of them).

I enjoyed sunshine and fresh spring breezes.  I left my phone charging for a whole day and took a break from the computer and all of its accompaniments.

We may have missed out on some things by pretty much holing up all weekend.  Sometimes though the best thing you can do for yourself is to take a break.  There is always chatter about listening to your body about what you need, but how many of us really listen?  I am so glad that I did listen this past weekend.    While I may have not woken up ready to take on the world, I did feel mentally and physically healthier.  All in all a weekend of recharging was just what was needed. –June

“All that is important comes in quietness and waiting.” — Patrick Lindsay

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Limiting Beliefs

Recently we were working on handstand in yoga class.   To feel more comfortable, we were working against the wall which meant that when you kick up, with your feet over your head, you cannot fall over.  However, as soon as I got in position my brain told me that I was not strong enough and that I was going to fall on my head.  Guess what happened?  I could not get my feet off of the ground and it was because of limiting beliefs.

I find that limiting beliefs can prevent me from doing so much that I am fully capable of doing.  Do you do this to yourself as well?

There are many things I do not do because I don’t think I can do them.  I cannot do a handstand or a headstand or really any upside down pose.  I cannot draw or sing.  I cannot run.  I have trouble going to a party where I do not know anyone.  Are any of these really true?

My limiting beliefs about myself prevent me from even trying any of these things.  The limiting beliefs cause fear.  They cause me to fear that I am going to fail or embarrass myself.  However, that should not matter.

We should try those things that we are passionate about even if there is the risk of failure.  In the long run, who cares if we try and fall flat on our face.  And no one is good at something the first time they try.

There have been times that I have let my limiting beliefs get the best of me and it has caused me to miss out on something amazing.  When we were in Hawaii years ago I refused to swing on a rope over a deep lagoon because I was not sure I could do it.  I still regret that I didn’t try it.  But I am so glad that my limiting beliefs have not prevented me from trying zip lining, going whitewater rafting, learning to knit or start blogging.

I am still working on keeping those limiting beliefs in check.  My dream is to write a novel.  I have dabbled with an idea and a few pages here and there.  When I sit down to write I am immediately seized with the limiting belief that I am not a writer or that I am a terrible writer.  It prevents me from moving forward and having fun just writing.

That critical voice in our head is loud and sometimes the best thing we can do is acknowledge it.  And then tell that voice it is a liar.  If you really want to pursue something, do it and do not let those limiting beliefs hold you back.

In the meantime, I am going to tell that voice to shut up when I sit down to write and also when I work on my handstand.  I may only write a paragraph or I may get my feet barely off the ground but it will be progress which will show that voice who is boss.

Do you have limiting beliefs about yourself that are holding you back?   Is there anything you do to put those limiting beliefs aside?  –June

Many people are passionate, but because of their limiting beliefs about who they are and what they can do, they never take actions that could make their dreams a reality. -Tony Robbins

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Another Step Closer

The last few days I have been in Chicago. Our youngest daughter, Alyssa, just attended her senior prom and is graduating from high school tomorrow. I can’t believe our adorable and feisty little redhead is going off to college in a few months. In addition to celebrating her graduation, I’m also back for a doctor and dental appointment- my last before moving, I’m staging the house for selling, and of course a day of play (ahem, work) with June. I also celebrated my last birthday in my home town yesterday. Although this visit has been filled with more work than play, we have all enjoyed our time together, falling back into the natural rhythm of our family.

I’ve been getting the house ready to sell in stages, removing the first layer of “stuff” last fall. I can’t tell you how many times my mom and I filled the car with items collected over the years, emptying its contents at the nearby Goodwill. Of course the same woman was always behind the counter, and I think I saw an eye roll a few times when she saw my car pull up. Living in South Carolina the last few months has really given me perspective on what I truly need, and what I can live without. There are no basements there and with the heat and humidity, you need to be selective when storing items in the garage. I did let go of a lot more this time around. There were more bags for donation as well as garbage and the house feels a little lighter. Bob and I decided to have a moving sale since there will be quite a bit of furniture that won’t be traveling with us and we’ll have a truck pick up what’s left, and take it for donation. It’s nice to have a plan.

I’ve accomplished a lot in the house this trip and definitely feel like we are one step closer to the final leg of our journey.  As I remove more layers of “us” from this home, I feel less connected to it. I always imagined leaving would fill me with sadness, and although I may shed a tear or two before the moving van pulls away, I am grateful for all the wonderful memories. Now that our family is grown, I feel it’s time for a new one to enjoy this house and fill it with the sounds of children, birthday sleepovers, and holidays. The grammar school and high school are within walking distance and it’s the perfect place to raise a family. I’m heading back to South Carolina on Wednesday, but will be back again for the 4th of July holiday where we will celebrate our nation’s birthday together, enjoying time by the pool and of course our town’s fireworks as we prepare to take that next step. It’s so true what they say about our lives being all about the journey and making the most of it, no matter where the road takes us. We are on a journey together as a family, but we are all on our own personal voyage as well. It’s a little scary but oh so exciting.

Have a great week! ~May

Sooner or later we must realize there is no station, no one place to arrive at once and for all. The true joy of life is the trip.
— Robert J. Hastings

 

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Everything You Ever Wanted To Know – All About May

This Sunday is May’s birthday.  So first everyone wish her a Happy Birthday!  Second, in our birthday months we always like to do something a little special.  So we thought it would be fun to interview each other.  I, June, interviewed May to find out everything you ever wanted to know about her.  Well, maybe not really but there are some interesting tidbits here.

The following is not an accurate and completely editorialized interview of my interview with May.  June’s comments are in pink italics.

So give me your stats – I am married to Bob.  I have two sons and two daughters and a labradoodle named Sawyer.  I am in the process of moving permanently to Charleston, South Carolina but right now have a home there and in the northwest suburbs of Chicago (If anyone is looking for a new home, May’s house is gorgeous and you should look at it).  I am a yoga teacher currently on sabbatical, an interior designer that is currently working on my new home, a blogger who is hoping to take over the blogosphere, a corporate and regular wife and a mom.

When and why did you become a yoga teacher?  I became a yoga teacher in 1998. I was going through a difficult time in my life (divorce) and a friend suggested that I try yoga.  After my first class I was hooked and a year later decided that I wanted to teach.  I completed a two year program that studied both the philosophy and the teaching of yoga. I know May had to do a residency for her yoga program and it was an all vegetarian diet at the yoga center which meant lots and lots of beans.  At the airport waiting for her flight home, May ate the best burger and drank the best beer she ever had in her whole life. 

What is your favorite yoga pose?  Child’s pose is my favorite because you can do it anywhere and anytime.  It releases tension in the body.  I also like headstand because it allows me to the look at the world from a different perspective. It really depends on my mood.

 

Everyone has a favorite holiday but what is your second favorite holiday?  Christmas is my second favorite holiday because Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday.

What is your favorite season?  My favorite season is summer although I also really really like Fall (unlike June who hates Fall).

What do you look forward to in the summer?  I look forward to being in my garden and playing in the dirt and just being outside in general. This summer is a little different because I am selling a house, packing it up and moving to Charleston, South Carolina. (June now has her fingers in her ears singing La La La because she doesn’t want to hear about May moving.)

What is one thing that you are good at that no one else in your family is good at?  Organizing. (I’ve been subject to her organizing when she helped me clean my closet.  She is good but mean, very mean.)

What is one of your pet peeves?  When people don’t clean up after themselves. (Are you guys noticing a theme?  Just so everyone knows, May’s nickname is Monica after the Friends character who needs to clean and cleans even after other people have cleaned because it’s not clean enough.)

What is one thing that you are not good at that you wish you could do better?  Math.  I was terrible at geometry.  I had to have tutoring sessions with the teacher and took it pass/fail.  The teacher agreed to pass me if I promised never to have a career that involved anything with math. (I hear you Sister.)

What do you do for fun?  Biking ( Bob and I biked over 500 miles last summer), trying new restaurants (especially in my new city), reading and cooking.

What are some of your favorite childhood books?  Boxcar children, Nancy Drew, Anne of Green Gables, and of course Little Women.

What are some favorite books as an adult?  The Winter Sea by Susanna Kearsley.  A writer goes to Scotland to do research for her book and she begins to experience some of the parts of her research.  Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy, The Devil in the White City by Erik Larson, and the Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton.  Honestly, there are so many favorites!!

What are some of your favorite TV shows?  Outlander, The Crown, any Masterpiece series show, The Walking Dead and Younger (I agree with a lot of those but The Walking Dead.  Scary.)

What are some of your favorite movies?  Gone With The Wind (she and her mom often say to each other, “We’ll worry about it tomorrow, Scarlett”), Star Wars, Jaws, ET, any movie with Audrey Hepburn.  I also like foreign films.

What is one weird or unusual thing about you?  I have always enjoyed listening to classical music when I cook or bake.  I used to have a little radio in my kitchen and I would turn on the classical station while I was cooking.  The classical music relaxes and inspires me in the kitchen.

If you could have any superpower, what would it be?  I would like to know the future.  As a structured and organized person if I knew the future I could prepare for it. (Umm, May do you remember that we are all about living in the present moment? )  I also would like to be able to fly.

Thank you May for allowing me to interview you and ask you some crazy questions.  I wish you the happiest of birthdays and so many blessings in the upcoming year.  I am so going to miss you when you move away from me.  I have already missed you this winter.  It’s good thing we don’t get charged by the text because we would literally go broke.  I love you my dear friend. –June

Today you are you that is truer than true.  There is no one alive that is youer than you.  -Dr. Seuss

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What’s Awesome Lately – May Edition

We think it is always a good thing to recognize your life for being awesome.  The awesomeness does not have to be saved for big moments but can be appreciated in small moments.  Here are a few things that we think are awesome lately.

Friday.  It’s Friday!!!  Friday’s are always awesome.  You can do anything on Friday.

Mother’s Day.  This weekend is Mother’s Day.  If you are a mom take time and enjoy being celebrated for the sometimes thankless but rewarding job of being a mom.  And we all have a mom so make sure to celebrate your mom.  If you are still looking for gift ideas we have some thoughts.

Spring Weather.  Because it is May it means that our favorite season, summer, is quickly approaching.  The earth is waking up from its long winter sleep and showing us her beautiful colors.  Looking out the window, going out for a walk or sitting on a lawn chair is awesome right now.

New Clothes.  The change of seasons also means that it is fun to look and maybe buy a few new clothes.

The ruffle is a big trend this summer.  It is a cute feminine detail and can be flattering.  You can find it on dresses, blouses and even t-shirts.

 

Gingham seems to be on trend this summer as well.  Gingham is always a sweet print but it is being done in styles that don’t make it too young to pull off.

And warm weather would not be the same without dresses.  Now is a good time to look for a few comfortable dress to be cool and look pulled together even in the steamy heat.  This is a cute sundress and looks to be a nice length.

Mexican Food.  Cinco de Mayo was last week and that combined with outdoor dining, makes us want to eat all of the chips and guacamole, tacos and margaritas.  Mexican food is always awesome maybe because it feels like a party.  One of our favorite Mexican restaurants is Uncle Julio’s, the skinny margarita is more than awesome, and we were excited to see that they are expanding and opening more restaurants.

Fun Quotes.  A fun quote we saw this week:

So check out the awesome in your life.  And have an awesome weekend. –May and June

“Whenever I’m sad, I stop being sad and be awesome instead.” — Barney Stinson

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Ribbon Cutting

Ribbon Cutting Ceremonies

I went to a ribbon cutting ceremony last Saturday.  As old as I am, can you believe that I have never been to a ribbon ceremony?  The ceremony was full of all of the pomp and circumstance that such an event should contain.  There were speeches and pictures.  Then the grand event of cutting a big red ribbon over the front door with giant scissors opened the building to all visitors!

This ribbon cutting was special for me because it was the grand opening of a new library where my brother is the director.  The project has taken over a year and was a lot of work for him and many others.  The opening deserved this kind of ceremony because it was a momentous occasion of a vision coming to life.

When I mentioned to others that I had never been to a ribbon cutting ceremony, most others (some much older than me) echoed the same sentiment.  So it got me thinking that we should have more ribbon cutting ceremonies to celebrate the fruition of our own visions and accomplishments.

Other than your graduation and your wedding, when was the last time you celebrated an achievement?  And even if you have had a celebration when was the last time you celebrated in a big, possibly public, splashy way?  I know for me it has been a long time.  As adults I think we have a tendency to accomplish one thing and then immediately look forward to the next thing that needs to be done.  We should all take time to pause and celebrate all of those moments both big and small.

Buy a new house?  Put a big ribbon on your front door and cut it before you walk through.  Not only did you make it through the home buying process but you are committing to making a home in that structure.

Finish a big project at work?  Put a big ribbon on your office door and cut it before you start your day, taking a moment to relish in a completed job.

Clean out the closet?  Put a big ribbon on the closet door so it reminds you that the closet is clean every time you walk in the room.

 

The big ribbon might be a bit ludicrous and in some situation too ostentatious.  For example cutting a ribbon on the grocery store cart because you finally have food in your house may get you some funny looks.  But do something to celebrate when you accomplish something and feel proud.  The reason why those ribbons are almost always red and those scissors are gigantic is a statement is being made that this is something huge and important and special.  Those ceremonies not only celebrate what has been completed but what is to come.  So find those moments in your life to have a ribbon cutting ceremony to celebrate you and all that you are and everything that comes next. –June

You were designed for accomplishment, engineered for success, and endowed with the seeds of greatness. Zig Ziglar

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Home Inspiration

This past weekend was absolutely gorgeous here in Charleston. We were blessed with blue skies, moderate temperatures and best of all, low humidity. It was the perfect weekend to walk the beach, eat at a favorite outdoor cafe, or take a stroll through a nearby historical neighborhood and enjoy the beautiful homes and gardens, which is what I did on Saturday morning. Window boxes are overflowing with colorful blooms and I love that every house on the block is unique and filled with history. If only each home could tell us its story! I love to take pictures of homes and gardens that inspire me, especially as I continue to layer a little southern charm to my own abode.

The flowers are at their peak right now and do so much to dress up these historical homes.

These homes caught my eye and were on the same block, but as you can see very different from each other. I love that about old neighborhoods. I would move into all of them!!

I loved the color on this one. I picture some ferns hanging on the porches and pots of colorful flowers on the steps.

I bet this pink lady was magnificent at one time. The homes in Charleston are never torn down, but restored to their former beauty. I can’t wait to see this one after her makeover!

If you’re looking for a little inspiration for your home, simply walk out your front door or take a stroll  through your favorite neighborhood and enjoy the spring colors.

Have a great week! ~ May

Home is not a place, it’s a feeling.

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What We’ve Learned Lately

What We’ve Learned Lately

Today we are celebrating the last Friday in April before we move into one of our two favorite months… May of course! Let the May flowers bloom!! We are always taking away lessons as we journey through life and love to share the good, the bad, and sometimes the ugly. Sometimes these are profound and other times, they are just trivial.  Here are just a few things we’ve learned lately.

Our pets are our family. Make sure you stay up to date on their health with regular vet appointments, so potential problems can be caught early. Our furry family members give us so much and depend on us for love, care, and overall well being.

Meal prepping on the weekend is a godsend.  June started using a subscription service called Prepdish that sends her menus for the month.  You can pick between paleo and gluten free which means that all of the food is healthy.  The menus include a grocery list and instructions for four dinners, a side salad, a breakfast, a snack and a dessert.  She spends a couple of hours on Sunday prepping the menu items.  Sometimes this means cooking the day’s food completely and other times it means just prepping all of the ingredients to cook the day the meal will be eaten.  There are no more decisions in the evening about what to have for dinner, we are eating healthier (more fish) and throwing away less.  With only 2 people eating, we easily halve the recipes or have leftovers for lunch.

The only journey we are responsible for, is our own. It is not our job to make choices for others. When we do, we deprive them of their own experiences and life lessons. We all must walk our own path.

Take a moment to observe the beauty of nature right in your own backyard. Are rabbits nesting in the middle of your yard? June has had a mama bunny build a nest in the yard almost right outside the front door.  It has been a bit of a challenge to protect the babies from Gatsby.  We have put a little fencing around, but not enclosing the nest to try and dissuade the dog and also protect it from the lawn mower.  The mama bunny does not sit on the nest but she is always nearby.  Apparently, she only comes occasionally to feed her babies and tries not to draw attention to the nest.

When you’re traveling ,make time for an afternoon pick me up and just enjoy the scenery. (You can do this in your own town too!) It’s amazing how much you can learn by simply observing.

Have a good weekend! –May and June

Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young. The greatest thing in life is to keep your mind young. -Henry Ford

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Quiet Moments

Quiet Moments

I hope you all had a wonderful Easter weekend. We had a beautiful day and while Sawyer and I were out for our early morning walk, I enjoyed seeing the little ones in our neighborhood, armed with Easter baskets as they ran around their homes searching for Easter eggs in cozy pj’s, their tired parents (also in pj’s) stifling yawns and armed with coffee mugs, following close behind. The smell of pancakes and bacon throughout the neighborhood was intoxicating.  By the time we made it back to our porch, cars were driving down the street, its occupants dressed in their Sunday best as they headed off to Easter service. It was a lovely day.

Since returning from Italy, my internal alarm clock has been waking me up at 5am. I don’t know if my body is just taking its sweet time adjusting back to our time zone, or if it’s simply the subtle shift in the seasons. Over time, I’ve noticed my body has always been very much in tune with the sunrise and sunset. This morning, I again was awake early and left Sawyer dreaming in the quiet sanctuary of the bedroom. I made a cup of coffee and went outside onto the piazza to listen to the first stirrings of morning. I love hearing the birds when I wake up, especially the familiar tune the cardinals sing, along with the occasional owl.

I’ve always loved the peace that comes just before sunrise. For me, it’s a time for reflection, gratitude, and preparation for a new day. It’s a time when I can set my intention for how I want my day to go. Do I want those that I interact with to have the power to affect how I feel? Or, do I simply want to live this day to the fullest for myself? For me, gratitude is part of everyday. Saying thank you for what I have, as well as what I don’t have keeps me present and my life meaningful. How easy is it for us to constantly be worrying about what may or may not happen in the future? When we do that, we miss the beauty and subtle messages that come with today. For me, “thank you” is the most meaningful part of prayer.

Now, as I continue to reflect, the birds songs are growing louder and I’ve noticed a few lights turning on in my neighbors homes. Soon, everyone’s day will begin as cars and school buses make their way down the street. The light outside is beginning to change as the sun prepares to rise and shine on what promises to be another beautiful day, and I feel connected and at peace. Sawyer, now awake, has found me and soon will be ready to start his day too…..after a few quiet moments of reflection.

Thank You.

Have a great day.

~May

A quiet mind is able to hear intuition over fear.

 

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The Purge Continues

The Purge Continues

At the beginning of Lent, I told you about my Lenten challenge.  I was going to get rid of 40 bags in 40 days. This was not only a housecleaning project, but a spiritual one.  The intent was to get rid of things that were no longer serving.  By getting rid of the material, I hoped to let go of the non-material.  The purge has continued at my house and I do not mean that horror movie that I refuse to watch.  These are a few things that have helped me in this process.

First, before taking on this challenge, my husband and I talked about and agreed to do it together.  Both of us have an excess of stuff in our house and he needs to make his own decisions about his stuff.  It has been extraordinarily helpful for him to be right there alongside me getting rid of things that are no longer serving him.  He also helps me carry out the trash and take items to be donated which is practical help.

Second, we did a large painting project to the interior of our house including the master bedroom closet.  This meant that all of the contents of the closet were all over the rest of the bedrooms in the upstairs of our house.  We had stuff piled on the bed in the guest room, in the hallway and piled on the floor in the office.  The visual of all of that stuff was a great motivator to realize that we had way too much stuff in that closet.  Instead of simply putting everything back in the closet, we took our time to go through the items, and purge.  Our closet is much more organized now.

Third, I read portions of the book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing by Marie Kondo.  A caveat is that I borrowed this book from the library so I did not add another book to my bookshelf.  This book was much buzzed about a year or two ago on women’s talk shows and other media.  I was told that there were tricks in there for storing your clothes.  One of her tips is to fold your t-shirts in a manner that your can line them up vertically rather than in a stack.  Then when you open your drawer you can see all of your selections rather than just the ones on top.  Some of her philosophy for organizing seems a bit hokey.  For items that are not purely utilitarian, she tells you that you should hold each object and determine if it gives you joy.  It sounds silly but when I have been on the fence about whether to keep or dispose of something, I have thought about whether it gives me joy.  The other thing she advises is if you are disposing an object to thank it for what it gave you, and say goodbye.  I have done that and it does make me feel less guilty about getting rid of it.  It served its purpose and now it is time for it to move on.

Finally, we have donated a lot of items.  While I do not want to have an attitude of snobbery, I have tried to think often of the people my donated items may help.  We have not donated items that are worn out or broken.  For the items that still have life in them, I hope they will clothe someone and keep them warm, help someone dress for an interview, or even just allow someone to wear a nice item that they otherwise might not have been able to afford.  We also try and donate to an organization such as Goodwill that employs people who have limitations that could make it difficult for them to find a job.

The process continues over at our house.  As of the weekend, I think we were up to 22 bags, an extension ladder and a broken magazine basket.  I am not sure we are going to hit the 40 bag mark by Easter next weekend unless we are absolute maniacs this weekend.  However, we have started the process and plan to continue it past Easter.  By disposing of material things, not only do I have a clean closet but most importantly I have realized that we are blessed with overabundance.   Even after purging, I still have too many pairs of shoes, too many hoodies and too many books.  It is making me more conscientious about spending our money on items that we do not need.  I would like this evolve into less excess stuff in our life and open our lives to an excess of experience and joy.  –June 

Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful. -William Morris

 

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Rainy Day Adventures

It is officially spring and along with new life poking up from the cold damp earth, we are starting to hear the beautiful sound of chirping birds in the morning, as well as the wonderful feeling of the warm sun as we gently turn our faces up toward the sky, our bodies eager to drink in some much needed vitamin D. Spring is also the time we experience those rainy days that are so needed to wash away the stillness of winter, and encouraging new growth to take its place with beautiful blooms in shades of pink, yellow, and red.

As much as we love blue skies and sunshine, every now and then we enjoy a rainy spring day.  A rainy day is the perfect time to stay in our comfiest of clothes, make a bowl of popcorn, and snuggle up on the couch with a great classic movie. How about Gone with the Wind? Yes, it’s a bit long but that’s the great thing about having a pause button, right? If you’re like us, you have probably seen it several times, but if you haven’t seen it yet, do yourself a favor and check it out.

A rainy day is the perfect time to put on your boots and raincoat, grab your umbrella and explore your neighborhood. It’s mother nature’s way of cleansing the body and soul and you’re never to old to splash through puddles.

A rainy day is the perfect time to bake chocolate chip cookies. Is it just us, or do cookies smell better on a gloomy day?

A rainy day is the perfect time to take a nap. There is something so peaceful about the sound of rain falling in an otherwise quiet room. There are even apps that mimic that sound for a better night’s sleep.

Of course a rainy day, or any day is the perfect time to curl up on the couch with a great book and a cup of tea.

What do you like to do on rainy days?

Have a great weekend.~May and June

The sound of rain needs no translation.

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Viewing Your Life Through A Screen

Last Tuesday night, I went to a concert with my husband.  The performer was not my choice.  My husband thinks though that he is still young and hip, so we saw Ariana Grande perform (and some other people who I did not even know).  The audience was young for the most part.  We had crazy close seats on the floor and a great view of the stage.  However, that view was obstructed by everyone in front of us holding up their phones to record the show.  The guy immediately in front of me recorded the whole concert.

 

We go to concerts sporadically and we go because we love the experience.  There is a magic to seeing and hearing a performer sing live.  There is a magic to sharing that experience with the people filling the venue and listening to their screaming and singing along with the performer.  We attend live performances for that shared experience.  This is the reason we still attend movies at a movie theater or a football game in a stadium.  The technology has become so advanced that we can watch almost any movie from the comfort of our own couch.  However, it is a different experience to attend those events with the excitement of a crowd.

Watching these mainly young people watch this live concert through the screens of their phone made me think they are missing the experience.  I can assure you that just because you do not have a recording or a picture of an event to post to social media, the event did still occur in your life.  This blog often talks about enjoying the beauty of the present moment and this is the antithesis of that concept.  Do you really want to view your life through a screen?  It seems that you are being an audience member of your life rather than a participant.

My iPhone 7 plus has a screen size of 5.5 inches.  My world and life would be very small if I viewed my whole life through that screen.  I would miss out on things going on around me.  I would miss the crack on the sidewalk and trip.  I would miss the beautiful sunset.  I would miss seeing the “protest” a few weeks ago of six people walking down the middle of a busy city street holding a sign and chanting.  I would forget to use my other senses too.  My sense of smell to enjoy a fresh rainfall or my sense of sound to hear the first birds of the spring chirping their songs.

Preserving memories is great but don’t forget to enjoy your life in the moment.  My husband and I took a few pictures at the concert.  He also recorded a snippet here or there.  But for the most part we enjoyed the experience.  We sang or clapped along.  We danced so much that my feet hurt.  We enjoyed looking at some of the fans’ outfits complete with bunny or cat ears.  We enjoyed watching dads taking their tweenage daughters to a concert.  We thoroughly enjoyed the experience and those memories are what we will talk about as time moves on.  When I looked at those people that were recording every single moment it didn’t seem like they were having much fun.  I wonder when they watch that video later on how they will feel about the concert.  Will they remember the things my husband and I will talk about or will their experience without emotion or excitement.   The memories of a fully experienced moment are so much sweeter than a picture in a book –June

Being connected to everything has disconnected us from ourselves and the preciousness of this present moment.”  – L.M. Browning, Vagabonds and Sundries

 

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What We’ve Learned Lately

Happy Friday! No matter what is happening in our busy lives, we are always learning new things. Sometimes these new things are profound. Sometimes they are silly. Sometimes they are little hacks that make life easier, and sometimes they are an interesting fact or two that can make life more interesting . Here are a few things we’ve learned lately.

The difference between a graveyard and a cemetery is that a graveyard is connected to a church.  If the church closes then the graveyard becomes a cemetery.

If you are having any work done around your house, clean your closets first.  The contents of June’s master bedroom closet were let out of their confines during the course of painting, and have now taken over the whole upstairs.  She has a lot of work to do.

Make a list when you go to the store. If you don’t, you will buy items you don’t need, and forget the item you went to the store for in the first place.

Pay attention to your pets. They remind us to stop, breathe, go for walks, and give belly rubs.

Our Dogs and their Black and White Enemy

Gatsby

Sawyer

Dress for the weather- not for the calendar date.  And check the weather before you leave the house.  If it is 70 degrees in February you do not need to wear a coat.  If it was 70 degrees in February the day before it does not mean it will be 70 degrees today.  If it is not going to be 70 degrees, please do not wear flip flops or shorts.

No matter how much plastic surgery the Hollywood stars have, you can always tell their age by their neck.  Find a good neck cream.  We are looking for one and if you have found a magic neck cream, please share.

Have a good weekend. –May and June

It’s what you learn after you know it all that counts. John Wooden

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To Gray Or Not To Gray

A few weeks ago, my mom and I were on the hunt for a patio table for her yard. We didn’t find the table, but we both noticed the sales clerk’s hair which was a beautiful silvery gray. We actually complimented her on it and she proudly said she gets more positive feedback on her natural gray hair than she did when she colored it. We continued our conversation about gray hair on the drive home, wondering why society finds that men look handsome and distinguished as they gray (George Clooney), and women simply look old? But then we thought, maybe it isn’t society at all, but pressure that we women put on ourselves to try to stop the hands of time. Or, perhaps, it’s a little bit of both.
 
Recently, I have noticed gray hair becoming a growing trend for women who want to embrace a more natural look. I actually started a Pinterest board titled Forever Goddess that shows photos of beautiful women embracing their naturally gray hair. Let’s face it, coloring hair to cover gray is a lot of work and if you have it done professionally, a lot of money, not to mention the regular application of smelly chemicals to your hair and scalp. Even if you use organic products, we are still talking time and dollars. I know women who have to color their hair every three to four weeks to prevent their gray roots from showing, and if you’re a brunette you really need to stay on top of it. Are we truly realizing our authentic selves if we color, or are we wearing a mask? Also, are we fully living in the present moment if we are worrying about our gray roots and staying on top of our coloring appointments? I really don’t know the answer to that. I have a few friends who are tired of the vicious cycle of coloring their gray roots, yet they can’t ever imagine letting it go natural. I did find a great article about ditching the dye, and going for a more natural look in the Chicago Tribune.
 
Last year I wrote a post about clean hair care. Because of an allergy to traditional hair dye that I developed over a period of time, I had to find a salon that used products my scalp could tolerate. I did find a salon in South Carolina that uses the same Organic Color Systems, but because it was the holidays, and I was busy with the house, I didn’t make an appointment right away after I arrived. When I called, I had to wait four weeks for an appointment which brought me to nine weeks between coloring. (Yikes!) Now over the years, after I saw my first grays, I just got into the habit of getting my hair colored every five to six weeks without really thinking about it, because that is what we girls do. My new stylist was so apologetic about not getting me in sooner until she saw how little gray I actually have. I discovered that I not only inherited my maternal grandfather’s curls, I also inherited his slow to grow gray. That’s not to say I am gray free, because I am not. But it is loosely scattered around my head virtually showing no roots in between colorings. Interestingly, this stylist is not a big proponent of over coloring hair and uses low lights and high lights to help unite the new gray growth with the previous color, so you aren’t tied to a strict coloring schedule. I like that. Am I ready to give up color and just go au natural?? Not yet, although I am embracing the idea of it. For now, I am going to relax my hair schedule a bit. Also, because of the humidity here in the south, I am adopting a more carefree style that doesn’t require a precision cut, and I can just let my hair do what it was born to do. I am going to start blending whatever new gray comes in, with just a few low lights and see what happens.
Are you ready to embrace your gray?
Have a great week. ~ May
I am not aging. I am ripening. I am not getting old. I am becoming wiser. My hair is not going grey. It is shimmering silver like the light of the moon. My beauty brightens and glows with more brilliance with each circle around the sun and my spirit becomes stronger and softer as she flowers like a autumn orchid. I know this because i was told by a Whisper in the Wind.
 
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40 Bags in 40 Days

Today is Ash Wednesday which is the start of Lent in the Christian church.  Lent is a time of sacrifice, prayer and alms-giving.  In the Catholic Church we are asked to sacrifice something in our life for the period of Lent.  As a kid I always gave up chewing gum.  I loved chewing gum and not having any between Ash Wednesday and Easter was tough, but it was a simple way to keep the meaning of Lent and Easter in the forefront.

In the last few years, I have not been very thoughtful about sacrificing something during Lent.  We do not eat meat on Ash Wednesday or on Fridays during Lent which is not really that big of a sacrifice.  However, the last few years I have seen this 40 Bags in 40 Days Lenten “Challenge” floating around on the interwebs.

The physical purpose of this challenge is to get rid of 40 bags of stuff in your house over the 40 days of Lent (Lent is longer than 40 days but apparently Sundays don’t count which is something I wished I had know when I used to give up gum).  The bags of stuff can be donated, if still useable, or thrown in the trash.

When I first read about this, it seemed a bit self-centered to me.  I would get all of the benefit. Cleaning up the clutter in my house would equal me having a clean house.  This did not seem appropriate during the season of Lent when we should not be focused on our own pleasure and ego.  This seems a bit like giving up dessert during Lent not for the self-denial but because you really want to lose a few pounds.

I spent some time thinking and praying about this and came to the conclusion that for me this is a good Lenten sacrifice.  I tend to hold onto material physical stuff.   I become attached to things.  The Church often asks members and clergy to shed material items which is what this challenge will require me to do.  In addition, in the process of letting go of the physical that no longer serves me, I may let go of the more transcendental that no longer serves me.  This may be long-held expectations or beliefs or goals.  If I let go of the pants that no longer fit, possibly I can let go of that expectation of what I think of as the most attractive size.  If I let go of those books that I no longer want to or have time to read,  maybe I can accept that it is alright to use my free time in the way that is most enjoyable for me and not always in a way that is for self-improvement.

(We are having our house painted.  I feel like I am living in the house from E.T.)

In addition, for some items such as barely worn clothes or shoes, I will be donating them to others that need them.  While doing so, I intend to pray for those that receive them, that the items will serve them, and in some cases give them a little joy.

I also think in doing this project, I will appreciate even more how many blessings we have.  The truth is we have way too much in the way of material goods while others have very little.

My husband and I have decided to do this as a team effort this Lent.  It seems even more meaningful that we are taking it on together.  An important part of our relationship that sometimes gets neglected is our faith.  We met in a church small faith group many years ago so it seems appropriate that we approach a Lent sacrifice together.

You will find a lot of websites out there that have rules and a printable for this challenge.  However, it really is your journey to undertake in the best way that you see fit.  I intend to try and do a little bit every day but I also know that more time will be devoted to it on the weekends.  We have to clean out our closet.  I have too many clothes and my husband has shirts hanging in the closet that I have not seen him wear in the 15 years I have known him.  The closet will be a weekend project.  Smaller things such as the junk drawer in the kitchen can probably be sorted out in 15 minutes on a weeknight.

(This closet has way too much stuff)

We also intend to define “bag” how we see fit.  For example, we have an extension ladder that we ended up with when my mom moved.  For the last 5 years it has sat outside against the back of our garage never used.  We are getting rid of that and counting that as one “bag.”  In this case it really is the process of shedding ourselves of material possessions in a thoughtful and prayerful way.

If you are interested in doing the 40 bags in 40 days let me know.  We can support ourselves through this process. I know that this process will not be easy for me.  Letting go of stuff is hard for me even if it is no longer serving me.  And no matter how you choose to participate in Lent in another way, I wish you prayers.  And now I am off to buy lots and lots of trash bags.  –June

“Everything in life has its own time. There is time to celebrate and there is time to mourn. This is the time for reflection and transformation. Let us look within and change into what we ought to be.”  — Aaron Saul

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Styling Your Home With Vintage Finds

Have you every heard that saying everything old is new again? It can be said for a lot of things including fashion styles, movies, quotes, and music just to name a few. So much of our past seems to come back in fashion after a long absence. So I was thinking, how about finding something old, to make new in your home? Back in the day items weren’t as disposable as they are now. People didn’t have a lot of extra money to spend, they hung on to their things for a longer period of time, plus furniture and accessories were so well made they could practically last forever. I think my appreciation for well aged items came from my childhood. My mom and I were always looking for unique pieces to refinish and use in our home, my grandparents had some lovely pieces that I inherited and love, plus I have picked a few things up at antique stores and consignment shops along the way, and all have added that extra layer of charm to my abode.

I have never decorated my home in one particular decorating style because I love facets of them all including traditional, farmhouse, industrial, British colonial, nautical and of course the playful and sculptural mid-century modern. I feel a house really becomes a home when you blend a few elements of history with today’s styles, those pieces that could tell an amazing story if they were able to talk. For me, there is something so special about taking on an item of furniture or accessory that was loved and cared for by previous generations. Whether it is an early 19th century dresser, a beautiful vase, or a lovely oil painting from the past, these original items add a wonderful balance to some of the newer pieces that you may find online at popular stores such Wayfair, or furniture stores in your area.

I love poking around consignment shops when I travel to find something interesting from that particular region, and I have already found some great shops here in South Carolina, making a few purchases to dress up our new home.

Don’t you love this zebra patterned chair? They came as a pair, and my mom found these mid-century beauties at a garage sale in her neighborhood a few years ago. The sale was just about to close and the owner wanted to get rid of them, and sold them to her for $6.00, for the pair! My very talented friend re-covered them and I am in love. They add so much personality and a touch of sophistication to our space.

This glass top mid-century Baker table also has a story. It was found in a consignment shop in Chicago with a sale price of $50.00. At the time, the bottom was painted green which didn’t work with my mom’s decor, so she had it repainted and for years I admired it in her living room. She wanted to change things up a bit when she moved into her new house, and now this gorgeous piece gets to live with me.

How many of you were fans of the the show Frasier? We loved it and still enjoy the repeats. My husband, Bob, always admired Frasier Crane’s mid-century Eames style chair that adorned his beautiful Seattle apartment. It was something I tucked away in the back of mind, planning to someday surprise him with one that he could relax in after a long day. I came across this great little consignment store that only sells mid-century pieces, and I didn’t even have to walk inside because it was sitting right in the storefront window! Often times I will see something I like, but don’t commit right away because I’m not sure it will look great or if I really need it. I’ve often gone back deciding that yes, I do really need it only to find out that it’s gone. I acted fast on this one which was a good thing, because there was a lot of interest in this particular chair. It looks perfect in the loft, and yes, Bob loved it!!

Cocktails and bar carts go hand in hand and were quite the rage back in the 50’s and early 60’s.  Today, there is a growing trend of serving retro drinks at home on a tableside bar cart. I see bar carts adorning pages of design magazines and catalogs, as well as consignment shops. Last week this one caught my eye. Isn’t it beautiful?

I could go on and on about all the lovely artifacts out there. Here are a few more pictures of some beautiful items I’ve come across. If you do decide to make a purchase in an antique or consignment shop, don’t forget to ask if the prices can be lowered. Almost all of the stores I’ve visited are willing to negotiate.

Beautiful Garden Stool

This dresser from the early 1800’s made its way to our master bedroom

This very old garden statue comes as a set of 4 and called “The Four Seasons”

Have a great week! ~ May

“Old is the new New”.

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An Unexpected Gift This Winter

This weekend we had a completely unexpected string of days in the 60s and 70 degrees.  For Chicago in February, this is unheard of and records have been being broken right and left.  The unusual weather was a gift to us.  I looked at these days as a gift given to me, an unexpected vacation from the expected.

With a long weekend, it was a gift to get outside and enjoy it a bit.  We also enjoyed running errands quickly without the added weight of parkas, boots, hats and gloves.  I was scrambling to find weather appropriate clothing.  A t-shirt and a lightweight sweatshirt was all that was required which resulted in a gift of feeling weightless.

Gatsby enjoyed his gift by lying in front of the opened storm door to enjoy the rays.  Of course he lays there so long he eventually gets so hot that he is panting, but I guess he likes that feeling?

An organization had a polar plunge this past Saturday in a local lake.  I am sure the participants were planning on raising money through the adversity of freezing themselves in the winter snow and breaking through ice to access the water of the lake.  They had the gift of enjoying a dip in albeit cool water but with the warmth of the sunshine on their back.

The kids in the neighborhood enjoyed the gift by dusting off bicycles and shaking the rust off of the swing sets.

I have mentioned before that I hate winter and I tend to suffer a bit from seasonal affective disorder during the long dark days of winter.  This unexpected spring landing right in the middle of the worst month of the year was truly a gift.  Being a true Chicagoan, I know not to trust that it will last (or if it does last the world must be coming to an end), because I am sure winter is not done with us yet.  I will, however, soak up every minute of it while it is here, knowing that even when it fades, it will be back soon enough. –June

If we had no winter, the spring would not be so pleasant: if we did not sometimes taste of adversity, prosperity would not be so welcome. – Anne Bradstreet

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Signs of Spring

Happy February! Here in the South we are already witnessing the first signs of spring. The days are slowly getting longer, and as it grows lighter a little earlier every morning, I am waking to the cheerful sounds of birds, particularly cardinals outside my bedroom window.

February seems to be that bridge between winter and spring and although the weather can be rather turbulent this time of year, it is generally short lived. February is the shortest winter month after all, and it lets us know that spring is on the horizon, bringing with it stirrings of life and warmer temperatures. I know once February is here, a new season isn’t far behind.

It has been a particularly mild winter here in South Carolina, and although we have experienced a few cold snaps, we have generally enjoyed sunny skies and temperatures in the 60’s and 70’s. Will there be a price to pay for this lovely weather? Absolutely. I have heard from reliable sources that a mild winter is often followed by a hotter than usual summer, plus we can expect a larger population of mosquitos, snakes, and the very large and crunchy palmetto bug. This happens because there hasn’t been a hard enough freeze to kill the eggs of all the afore mentioned creepy crawlers. I will be in Chicago preparing for our move most of the summer, so not being here for a few months won’t be a terrible thing. I don’t like snakes. Right now, however, the sun is shining, there is a warm breeze, and all is right with the world.

Of course the first signs of spring are always obvious in nature. The landscape begins to green up a bit and we start to see buds preparing to open. I have made a point of observing the many trees and shrubs around me on my morning walks, enjoying foliage that is very different from the landscape in the midwest.

The stores in the area are also preparing for the coming season, and while I was at Target, I noticed several aisles overflowing with backyard twinkle lights, grills, beach towels and patio furniture. I know even in the midwest stores are preparing for spring, selling off  heavy jackets, bulky sweaters, and boots at a much reduced price, letting go of one season to welcome in a new, lighter one. Many of my favorite catalogues are waiting in my mailbox filled with pages of new spring styles for myself, as well as my home and garden, and I enjoy daydreaming about warm summer nights. A lot of supermarkets are selling bouquets of spring flowers such as daffodils and tulips, which I always enjoy on my kitchen counter this time of year, letting winter know its time with us is limited.

No matter where we live, spring is a season of renewal. Officially, it is still six weeks away and while we don’t have control over the weather, bringing a little spring into our homes, wearing a little pop of pink or yellow, or taking a brisk walk and enjoying the sun are all great ways to get rid of the winter blahs, welcoming a little spring into our lives.

Have a great week! ~May

No matter how long the winter, spring is sure to follow. -Proverb

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What's Awesome Today?

What’s Awesome Today?

I am feeling weary and exhausted lately.  The world in the last few weeks has become noisier, harsher and less kind.  And in the quest to have opinions heard, the media and people are making themselves louder and more extreme.  At the end of the day I come home feeling wrecked and tired.  Are you feeling this way too?

A few months ago I switched the radio station I listen to in the morning.  My previous station hired new morning hosts that grate on me and I was fortunate to find a new station with the music I enjoy and hosts that are entertaining.  During the lead-up to the election, the hosts started a weekly segment called “What’s Awesome Wednesday” to put some positivity in the world.  Listeners call in with what is awesome in their life at the moment.  The awesomeness does not have to be anything momentous but can be a witnessed random act of kindness or something that brought a small smile.  It has met with such success that they have found that teachers are using it in their classrooms to help their students feel more positive and less anxious and have now made it an almost daily segment.

So in my personal quest to spread some positivity, joy, love and peace in the world, here is my list of What’s Awesome Today.

The sunshine.  On Monday, we saw the sun in Chicago for the first time in 8 days.  It has been a dreary month and the sun was such a welcome sight.  The warmth and the light improved everyone’s mood and made me smile.

The start of a new month.  January, the wickedest of winter months, is now in our rearview mirrors.  While February is no walk in the park (and in fact is my least favorite month of the year), we are that much closer to March, when spring officially begins.

New paint colors.  We have lived in our house almost ten years.  That means the last time we had the interior of our house painted was almost ten years ago.   We have decided it is time to freshen up the house and get rid of the dingy marks from handprints and dog slobber.  So I am having fun picking out lighter fresher paint colors and envisioning what our house will look like with a new coat.  If you have any favorite paint colors, let me know, I’m still in the browsing phase.

New niece.  My husband and I are an uncle and aunt again.  Tom’s sister had a baby girl who surprised everyone 5 weeks early.  Because she was early she can use some prayers that she will be able to go home soon.  We cannot wait to meet her and enjoy some of that sweet baby smell and cuddles.

Spring catalogs.  The spring catalogs have been arriving in my mailbox.  I am far from buying anything because it will be months before it feels like spring in Chicago, but they are nice to look through and admire the warmer weather clothes.

The Bachelor.  I admit this show is ridiculous and I probably kill brain cells while watching it, but it is a perfect Monday night guilty winter pleasure when all you need is silly entertainment.  There is not one redeeming cultural thing about this show and it so far from real life, which is why we watch it every week.

Books.  In the last week, I have read 2 great books that I cannot get out of my head.  It has almost ruined me from starting another book (not really because if you know me, you know I always have to be reading something).  The first was A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles.  It gets off to a slow start and the Russian names are a little confusing, but it is so worth it.  After the Bolshevik revolution, the Count is sentenced to a lifetime of house arrest.  Luckily, for the Count he lives in a hotel.  While he is captive, his life changes in ways he could never imagine through the people that come into his life.  The story is full of humor, spectacularly written scenes, interesting and delightful characters and an ending that, a bit unexpected, but so satisfying that I smiled through tears at the end.

The second book I just finished and cannot stop thinking about was All the Ugly and Wonderful Things by Bryn Greenwood.  I cannot describe this book because a lot of what happens to the main character, Wavy, is absolutely horrible.  This story could have taken such a different turn but it ends up being a hard-fought love story.  A love story that could very easily been extraordinarily ugly but ends up being so beautiful that you cannot put it down.  And I can doubly attest to that because this book is so overdue at the library right now that I must pay many overdue fines.

Pink.  My neutral winter wardrobe of blacks and greys seems to fit the weather but often make my mood similar to the weather outside.  So lately I have been trying to add a pop of color to my wardrobe which usually means my favorite, pink.  I got a great bright pink little cashmere poncho when I was visiting May a few weeks ago.  I can add that over a long sleeve neutral tunic and legging and add a little fun to my outfit and warmth to my face.  I also have this fun necklace in pink that adds that same pop.  I have worn both several times, and am surprised how many times I get complimented.  Maybe everyone needs a little pink in their life too.

Remembering the beach.  When I visited Charleston 2 weeks ago, we went to the beach for a short time before the storms moved in.  I am remembering the feel of the sand between my toes and the treasures from the sea.

Comfort Dogs.   I fell in love with the LCC Comfort Dogs several years ago.  The Comfort Dogs are a ministry of the Lutheran Church Charities.  The dogs are all golden retrievers who are trained as therapy dogs with the sole purpose of giving comfort to people.  The dogs and their handlers provide local services at schools and nursing homes but also often travel to disaster areas such as Newtown after the shootings, Orlando this past summer and Joplin, Missouri after the tornadoes there several years ago.  The organization has a presence on Facebook and Instagram but even better each of the dogs have their own social media accounts as well.  It brings me much joy and peace to open my social media accounts and find amid all of the bad news, posts and pictures from various Comfort Dogs providing comfort to others.  Also, they have some Comfort Dogs in Training right now, so there is a lot of puppy cuteness going on.  If you need a little joy and comfort of your own search for LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs and like some of their pages.

So what’s awesome today for you?  Help spread some good cheer and joy in the world. –June

Thousands of candles can be lighted from a single candle, and the life of the candle will not be shortened. Happiness never decreases by being shared.
Buddha

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Getting Away From It All

I left home for a few days.  It was nothing dramatic.  I had scheduled a getaway to visit May in Charleston, South Carolina for four days.

I realized upon arrival to the airport that I rarely go somewhere by myself just for fun.  Usually when I travel solo it is for work or a conference.  Vacation time tends to be sacred so I usually spend that time traveling with my husband.

Because this was going to be a weekend of frivolity and I wanted to travel light, I left my laptop at home.  That meant no work unless it was a phone call or an email.  I was absolutely unable to log into or attend to anything substantive.  That alone felt like a weight off of my shoulders.

I left my boys (my husband and Gatsby) home to take care of each other.  At home I am the caretaker.  I make sure everyone is fed, walked and has clean clothes to wear.  However, they were on their own and guess what?  They survived.

May and I had a really fun weekend (we’ll post more later), but being away by myself made me realize a few things.  First, it is good to do things for yourself once in awhile even if it means spending a little money and going on a trip.  It is good for you to do things on your own.  That may mean travelling alone, eating in a restaurant alone, going to a movie or a play alone, or just sitting quietly alone.  I have a good marriage and I genuinely enjoy my husband’s company, but sometimes I need a little space to do things for me with no expectations from anyone else.

Second, re-entry to work is tough after a fun vacation especially if you do not particularly like your job.  The morning I returned was a grouchy morning.  Work is not always fun no matter what you do, but when your work is exhausting and uninspiring, the time away from it makes it all that much clearer.

Third, I appreciate that my husband encourages me to do these things on my own which makes it easier to take the leap and step out of my comfort zone.  I was a little anxious before I left about travelling by myself.  We usually road trip on vacation so flying makes me a little uncomfortable especially with all the rules now of security and carry on baggage.  When I expressed my concerns, my husband told me how happy he was that I was going on a fun trip for myself.  He recognizes that we each need to keep pieces of ourselves to keep our marriage interesting and strong.

Fourth, the dog is not happy when I leave him but is really, really happy when I come home and follows me around like my second shadow.  He is also very good at guilt trips, but copious amounts of dog treats assuage all of his feelings of abandonment.

Fifth, and finally, there is no better place to sleep than your own bed. –June

 

It is only when we silent the blaring sounds of our daily existence that we can finally hear the whispers of truth that life reveals to us, as it stands knocking on the doorsteps of our hearts.      

K.T. Jong

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