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My Thanksgiving

I sat at the table at the buffet looking around at my family. It was just my son, my parents and myself but it was perfect. The chatter stayed consistent even as we filled our mouths with food. It was wonderful, probably my favorite Thanksgiving. This year was a pretty tough year for me and my family. We were challenged with heartache, medical scares, and a lot of self-discovery this year. It was filled with many highs and many lows…but here we were all together, stronger and closer than we were when we entered the year. I felt proud and I felt loved, filled with a sense of comfort. I couldn’t think of one word to sum up everything I felt thankful for, not even a few words could capture all the gratefulness I felt in that moment.

Thankful for strength.

Thankful for the lesson of patience.

Thankful for my family coming together.

Thankful for my mother, my father, my son, and everyone that helped me survive this year.

Thankful for the friends that stuck by me on my messy days.

Thankful for the roof over my head.

Thankful for life.

My son and I continued the holiday with getting up early and hitting some Black Friday shopping. He wanted to experience a ‘Black Friday’. I think we may have started a little Mommy & Son tradition. I think we made it pretty well – hit the outlets and picked up some new clothes. He loved being able to do something something and I loved being able to make it into some quality time and part of his Christmas gift – with him becoming a teen this coming year, it gets harder to shop for him so…new tradition: Every year for part of his Christmas gift, I’ll take him Black Friday shopping for clothes. We had fun and to be honest the wee early morning shopping was kind of peaceful. I have to give kudos to the kiddo for giving me a new perspective on Black Friday shopping.

Thankful for the time I was able to spend with my son.

Thankful for money to spend.

Thankful for new experiences.

My son headed over to celebrate with Thanksgiving with his Dad, stepmom and his little sister so I took the weekend to catch up on some cleaning and to-dos. I’m feeling pretty accomplished – threw out two bags of trash, finished a few paintings, have floor and dresser space again and crossed quite a few tasks off my list. I have always looked forward to the beginning of a new year and this year even more so. I had been putting things off to include in my ‘New Year Prep’ but realized, why wait until then? This can be the beginning of my new year!

Thankful for my creativity.

Thankful for a roof over my head.

Thankful for the growth and self-realization I’ve had this year.

Thankful for my journey to a simpler life.

Thankful for the opportunity to continue to grow.

 

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A Thoughtful & Grateful Week

Good Morning Beautiful Friday! It’s super cold here but the sun is coming up and I’m looking forward to a wonderful day!

I found myself in deeper thoughts this week, feeling a bit emotional and sensitive. It helped me see some important insight about myself and my life through it this week though. Some good, relaxing painting time last night and a great personal training appointment this morning is helping balance me out again and getting ready for a busy and fun weekend.

Tonight I’ll be heading to a Decked Out Art Show – a super cool local charity event. Local artists (including myself) painted and decorated skateboard decks which will be auctioned off tonight to benefit a local skate park. This show is always a great time and I’m very excited to have my family and friends join me at the event tonight!

What am I thankful for this week?

1.) I’m thankful for the immense growth and development I’ve had in my painting skills and style. I am naturally an eclectic person but I feel like I’ve really come into a nice style that fits me. I have pushed boundaries this year in painting different items and placements, started incorporating different methods, and have been learning to lose myself in the process by letting go and letting it flow.

2.) I’m thankful for my co-workers. I am so lucky to have the opportunity to work with some really talented, hard-working and caring people. I have built some strong friendships through my workplace and I wouldn’t give them away for anything. Thank you co-workers for being so supportive and helpful!

3.) I’m thankful for the patience I am learning to have with myself. I’m learning to enjoy my journey more, take my time to grow, and not feel like I need to rush to the end result. I’m learning to forgive myself more and to be more accepting of my mistakes and the lessons I’m learning as I go and be more proud and excited about progress not perfection.

4.) I’m thankful for my phone. Yeah, I know this is kind of a materialistic thankful thing but the reality is that my phone allows me to multi-task more and to be on the go more which fits my busy lifestyle. I’m thankful for all those folks out there that created the apps that help me stay on track and stay sane.

5.) I’m thankful for my ex-husband and his wife. I’m so proud of how far we’ve come and that we can call each other family and that (to be honest, sometimes I boast) we have built a strong foundation to be the best parents and team that we can be for my son. We had our many struggles as we learned to work together and to let by-gones be by-gones but we did it and we did it together. I’m proud of that and I’m thankful that we have the relationship that we have.

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A Very Thankful First Week

So for this month, I’ve decided to pull together a little list series to share what I’m thankful for each week. I find that when I spend more time thinking about the things I’m grateful for and less time dwelling on things that are not in my life, my heart feels lighter and I am more satisfied in the place that I am right now in my life. I wanted to spend this month highlighting some of my gratefulness that I have for the people, the things, and the experiences that I have in my life.

What am I thankful for this week?

1.) I am thankful for my mother helping me get some tasks done on a very busy week. My planner was full of things to get completed this week. I came home after a very long and busy day to find that my mom had prepared my broccoli, cheese dish for my work potluck tomorrow for me and had dinner cooking. Because of her help, I was able to sit down and have a nice dinner with her while we watched our current show ‘Grace and Frankie’ and talked about our days before heading to bunker up in my room and finish up painting my skateboard deck for next weekend’s local charity art show, Decked Out. I felt valued and it took an amazing amount of stress off my shoulders tonight. Thank you Mom!

2.) I am thankful that my idea came together and to life in my artwork tonight. I found relaxation in painting tonight and am feeling accomplished and proud of my artwork…considering I was cutting it really close with the painting due to the gallery tomorrow! It is such a great opportunity (and feeling) to be able to participate in such a great local event and be a part of a wonderful, artistic community.

3.) I’m thankful to be greeted at the door by such loving pups! The excitement and happiness that they have to see me every single day just fills me with joy!

4.) I’m thankful for the opportunity to work with my boss (she’s leaving for another opportunity…she will be missed greatly). I’ve learned so much about the business and about myself from working with her. She was a wonderful manager and brought the best out of me by helping me learn to play up my strengths and manage my challenges.

5.) I’m thankful for my friends for supporting and cheering me on in all of endeavors. They are the ones that motivate me to push towards my dreams and they’re also there to help me get up if I fall.

Believe In Your Blessings. They Will Keep You Strong.

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       I’m sitting in bed with my laptop on my lap, staring at my editorial calendar and the asterisk marking that I’m due for a blog post tonight, thinking what do I write about tonight, coming to the realization that I’m just feeling a bit drained. My thoughts continue on what to write, I search through my list of blog ideas on my Evernote App and I have plenty of ideas, but I’m just not sure my thinking process is there to fill them out… I continue to drift into thoughts of what is all on my mind. These past two weeks have been harder than others, emotionally I’ve been up and down, not sleeping well, but still finding myself driven to chase my dreams through it all, and knowing that I am strong enough to get through all of this. My daily mantra is that no matter what is going on around me, focus on myself, growing myself, focus on the positive things in life and working towards continuing to develop a life I love, and then everything else will fall into place around me. I sat down to review my day for tomorrow in my Happiness Planner and as fate may have it, tomorrow’s quote is “Ego says, ‘Once everything falls into place, I’ll feel peace’, Spirit says, ‘Find your peace, and then everything will fall into place’ ~ Marianne Williamson. The Universe has a way of putting exactly what we need right in front of us. When it comes to people, and to life, truth is that we cannot fix people, we cannot control them, we can only love them. Therefore I choose to be love. I choose to love those around me with all my heart, I choose to love life, and I choose to love myself. I know I will have days that are good, and I will also have challenging days, but I can choose to love each of those days, to cherish the lessons I learn, to appreciate the strength I gain from each and every moment. Tonight, my thoughts are scattered (as it shows in my writing I’m sure) but they will organize themselves, they will become clear in time, tonight I just need to let them go, let them run wild and just be. The holidays stir up all kinds of feelings inside of us, they remind us of what we are thankful for, they remind us of lost loves, and of so much more. I find myself becoming reminiscent, of wonderful moments but also of old emotions but I will continue to remind myself that, happy or sad, they are of my past. I get to live here and now and that is my greatest blessing, having a present to be in and a future to look forward to, wherever that future may take me. I am blessed with so many things, so many wonderful moments, so many great people that are in or were in my life. Initially when I started this post with the confusion of what to write about I was going to create a ‘What Am I Thankful For’ list post but I find that question hard to answer, not because I have a lack of blessings but because I have so many blessings, and that is what I am most thankful for. Several years ago, I may not have had the same outlook but I decided to make a choice to view my life differently. Whether I find myself with a lot or with a little there can always be a lot in my heart if I allow it to exist there and that makes all the difference. So tonight as I lay down to sleep (after I finish my Lifetime Christmas movie of course) I will go to sleep, leaving my scattered thoughts to sit, and replace them with thoughts of love, hope, and faith.  <3 

 

Cheers To Today!

Cheers!

Cheers to being alive,

To being able to love,

To being able to be loved.

Cheers to experiencing adventure in each day,

To feeling everything.

Cheers to the sky, the sun, the moon, and the earth.

Cheers to life,

To having a life to live that is your own.

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This Thanksgiving, when you sit down for your meal remember to feel blessed, for the family, the friends that you have. Remember to feel blessed for being able to have a life to experience. Remember that even when times are tough, there is a lesson there to learn and that there is love in that moment even when you cannot see it. Remember that someone does love you just as you love someone else. Find a reason to be thankful for everything in your life, remember that everything has a purpose. I am thankful for everyone and every experience that I have in my life and I believe that I am exactly where I am meant to be. Today when you sit down be thankful for all, say cheers to all. 

Happy Thanksgiving to all! I am blessed that you are here!

“Be thoughtful. Be genuine. But most of all be thankful.”