Category Archives: new

Looking Ahead, Setting Intentions

Well, Christmas has definitely taken priority this week! I meant to blog through my ‘10 tips to prep for another year,” (most recent post) and have missed: clean house, give away & sell, organize, organize your closet, plan needs and budget. How about I circle back to those topics here this next week and into 2016?

If I pick back up after budgeting, we’ll be discussing setting new goals, which is a favorite topic and something that pushed me to do more this year (because I continued to check back on my progress). I’m a list maker and goal setter by heart but maybe you aren’t. Hopefully, in sharing some of my own ambitions, you’ll be inspired to start thinking up yours.

I had fun reflecting and setting new goals a few weeks ago as I asked those in my fit group to create their own vision boards and share them. I didn’t have a compilation of magazines to use and wasn’t thrilled about printing a ton of Pinterest photos so I did my own spin on a vision board. All that was necessary was a handful of sharpie markers, chart paper (from teaching) music and about 30 minutes. I’ll post a photo, but wanted to list (some) of my 2016 intentions below:

  1. daily gratitude + creative journaling + planer use
  2. WRITE. Blog through 2016 health overhaul
  3. launch Live Audaciously in January + partner with non profit by June
  4. READ. One book a month {health} related
  5. weekly date nights + weekly random acts of kindness
  6. two adventurous vacations planned by May
  7. public speaking + self publish plans set in motion by May
  8. be diligent in learning about adoption and homeschool
  9. help Nigel pursue his dreams (launch career by June)
  10. PRAISE GOD FOR EVERY MOMENT. Okay, I will forget some moments but I can never forget that all my striving is in vain if I forget what it’s truly about – 

I love when Lewis Howes said, “when you doubt yourself, you doubt your Creator.” When we take the focus off ourselves and realize we have something to offer from our own unique person, possibilities abound. You have a purpose. You have a story to tell. You have goals to set (and conquer) and a passion that is singly your own. Entertain these thoughts tonight. 

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Simplicity is a Blessing

This morning I had the strongest craving for Honey Nut Cheerios. I haven’t had cereal in five years (thank God) but today I wanted a bowl. Nigel left for work and I walked to Publix. (It’s a funny thing, when I decide I want something, I’ve already convinced myself it’s done). As I was walking I noticed the breeze – cool enough for a jacket and also refreshing.   Seven a.m is perfect for walking. Nothing is crowded or busy. My attention was set on the coolness and serenity of being alone in the moment.

Last year, I would have been stressed at the idea of owning only one vehicle. This year, in the attitude of reduction and knowing most, if not all, individuals who retire early talk about the insane amount of money a car will cost over time. Most early retirees ride bikes or walk and have forfeited their vehicles completely.  Over the summer we concluded one vehicle was plenty. I’d be working from home 90 percent of the time and any challenge one car presented was only an opportunity to be creative.

So this morning, I was thankful to be without a car. Walking was cathartic and created space for me to reflect and be joyful in the moment. 

In this space, I meditated on what this next year will hold. I’ll be blogging through my own health challenge, which was born on the observation that my strength lies in movement. You do not have to convince me to power through a workout, or to stretch, or to enthusiastically occupy the dance floor..!  However, I’d rate myself as decent in overall health. I know how to feed my body (mostly) and I put this into practice (mostly). But why is mostly enough when “our body is a brilliant piece of machinery that outperforms even the most advanced computer,” ?

What I haven’t mastered is true health from the inside out. I want to set out to do what feels nearly impossible. I want 2016 to be the year of complete health. This will include transitioning into a completely organic household beginning with food (inside) and ending the year examining our environment (outside). Obviously, you’ll find so much in between so please follow my journey. I’ll be blogging from a different space as well as soon as my business website is launched.

For now though, consider all that was bread of convenience: our homes, grocery stores, fast food chains, the microwave, cars, airplanes, cell phones. Everything we quickly enjoy, but how we pile it all on ourselves until we’re suffocating, until we are stuffed fat with lethargy, until we have forgotten the true peace and beauty of simplicity. The blessing of having and needing little. The weight metaphorically and literally you’ll lose when you clear out the ‘stuff’ and the ‘junk’ and the desire to hoard the unnecessary (most of it).

I had been disappointed in our ‘humble Christmas’ this year until I was alone with the thought. The simplicity in the lights and the stockings and a few pieces of trim (branches snagged from outside) decked our home perfectly, sweetly, simply. This moment and season are whole. God, we are blessed.

 

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Compartmentalized Faith

Or, faith that suits you.

It seems a theme practiced especially in America is compartmentalized faith, or the idea that one truth only permeates in certain conditions. For example, when someone believes God will take care of them in any situation, and then any random situation occurs, and they forget their belief and retreat into fear. Or when we are asked to take in refugees and we decide that caring for those in need is conditional.

Or when we’re afraid to quit our job when we know it’s the right thing to do. Or when we can only give a little of ourselves because if we give more, we might be at a loss. Or when that scared voice inside is all that we  hear. When it starts counting scars instead of blessings and hurts instead of beauty.

We complicate the simplest of truths. Here’s one: you have faith or you have fear. You cannot have both. Well, maybe you can have both but only one will be driving. So which is it? Is the faith that you were created in such a way, that whatever happens if you wrap hold the faith you know you have somewhere – it will be ok. Or is it fear who tells you to look out for you no matter what because if you don’t, no one will? When in reality, the more you wrap yourself up and take care of you, the more you take away the opportunity for someone to love into your life.

Please open up this season. Give and share more of yourself because you were made to bless someone. You have unique talents that will heal the broken if you let faith drive you.

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Moving (on)…

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So now I rededicate this blog to adventure, whether that maybe real, tangible adventure or the soul adventure this life has us riding. I feel I keep chasing different styles and goals, but now I’ll make it clear.

I received the news I hoped to hear (after what seemed like years, ok, eight days…) and I am overjoyed to step forward toward the unknown and super exciting.

Many details need to be sorted, but very soon my love and I will get a chance at newness: new places, faces and experiences.

Stay tuned for what is next! (Stay alert for another secret blog as well)

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What’s in a name?

Life events overlap sometimes. Common themes began to appear. A friend called it synchronicity.

Either way, I’ve found the dilemma is not knowing what to write about, rather, owning what I write. I hold back because I don’t want friends or family to knit my writing to me, to draw conclusions about me because of what I have written, or to be disillusioned by what they comprehend.

One by one, lots of happenings began pointing me toward something that would allow me the freedom to bleed: a mask, a name, a pen name.

Man is least himself when he talks in his own person. Give him a mask and he will tell you the truth. -Oscar Wilde

Dr. Suess; Mark Twain; William Shakesphere; George Orwell; Pablo Neruda; Voltaire – to name a few famous pens. Now to creating my own. What an adventure this will be!

 

 

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Secrecy

Oh, I can’t explain. When I like people immensely, I never tell their names to any one. It is like surrendering a part of them. I have grown to love secrecy. It seems to be the one thing that can make modern life mysterious or marvelous to us. The commonest thing is delightful if one only hides it. When I leave town now I never tell my people where I am going. If I did, I would lose all my pleasure. It is a silly habit, I dare say, but somehow it seems to bring a great deal of romance into one’s life.

-Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray

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2013

Fresh. New. Possibility. Adventure. Alive.

I can almost feel these words as I think them. The psychological and ideological approach to the new year is not new, nor is it realistic, but it sure is fun. It’s fun to imaginatively pack up 2012. A memory just the right size to put in that box over there and, here, this one will fit too. That one memory gets shoved into the “never again box.” The NA box will be thrown out completely, burned, and hopefully we’ll lose sight of the ashes.

On NYE we construct new boxes. We fold them just right, we decorate them too. These boxes are created in the form of wishes, dreams and resolutions. These boxes are always much better than the used, sometimes ugly boxes of the years past. I realize I’m a day or so late in constructing my own box for the new year, but I wasn’t feeling the drive to create until now.

Mine is far more abstract than it has ever been before. The rules which dictated my dos and don’ts are loosely embraced this year. I’ve flung aside the brown cardboard that told me exactly how my experiences should appear and exactly what I will do to create them. This year’s ideas are merely suggestions.

Some suggestions I will paint on the outside of the box include: creatively existing, less do-ing/ more experiencing, a transition into better health, allowing myself to live by my own advice and learning to feed my soul.

Near the close of 2012, I shed the thought that my life had to seem a certain way. I too sensitively listened to everyone’s plans and thought I had to have my very own plan (and it had to look like every other plan). Sometimes my life will look radically different than anyone I can name, and that is OK. This epiphany birthed the choice to quit my job and purposefully not focus on the inevitable question of, “what’s next?” This decision has ignited so much feeling of freedom within my being. This decision has allowed me to entertain the world of possibility that lies ahead. I don’t want to be slave to the “have-tos” and I am embracing the “want-tos” and the “wouldn’t it be amazings?”

I know this year will be chalked-full of adventure and I cannot wait to share the “what’s next?” as it evolves into existence.

Here’s to a less complicated and more holistic new year. CHEERS.

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Possibility

11: the number of days remaining at my current job. 0: the number of jobs I have lined up after this one.
This makes me feel alive for some reason. It makes me feel free. It makes me feel like I don’t have to be tied-up to some responsibility to survive. I feel like my options are wide open and my future can be etched with my own pen.

Realistically, this is very stupid. However, it doesn’t stop me. I technically have a job substitute teaching, but need to register my fingerprints to be “official.”

I’d like to work in a warehouse or bar-tend or do something completely random, for fun, just because.

Ideas?? Suggestions?? Dares???

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The Cleanse

So often in life, we need harvest time.

We need to uproot everything we’ve been producing and sort the authentic from the destructive.

When this is done, we must burn our fields and start anew.

This is my harvest time. Yesterday, I gave notice at a job that means well, but is sucking my soul right out of me.

Yesterday, I also gave zero notice as I destroyed a relationship that had been destroying me.

As I purged the poisons from my system, I noticed a feeling of new, of hope, of authenticity bubbling up inside of me.

I took account of all the beautiful sorted out from the evil and realized, my life is so so good.

Praise God.

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The Borings

I’m not so good at this blogging thing.

I too often let the borings of life get in the way of the interesting, the fun, the creative.

Right now, the borings pay the bills; writing a blog post does not.

As I drove home from one certain boring, I thought to myself, “if I were to die tonight, would I have accomplished anything? Did my life make any difference? Did I reach my highest goals?” I know life is not without hope, but I still want to leave this world with a small trace of who I was for those I leave behind.

I want to live so loudly that people notice. Of course I want to love and to serve and to make others’ lives better; but I also want to experience life, to live creatively and purposefully.

I just feel so robotic.

Here’s to hoping I can live a teensy-bit longer… long enough to not be ruled by the borings, and long enough to experience and drink deep of the joy in life.

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