Thursday, March 31, 2011

Caution: Paradigm Shifting Ahead

I think I am undergoing a paradigm shift. Recently I have been reading and hearing a lot about trying to find "what makes you happy" or your "passion" as a lot of people call it. This has opened up a new way of thinking for me. Less based on logic, planning, and the future and more on the moment and enjoying it for what it is. I have not been seeking out these books, blogs, or conversations...they all just keep falling in my lap.

For example, today while clicking "next blog" at the top of the page I randomly stumbled across a very good piece on finding your passion here. In this piece the author suggests you start by making a list of things that make you happy or you have an strong emotional reaction to- for her it is anything that makes her cry.  (For those of you who knows me -I think it would be safe to say that anything that makes me clap is something that makes me happy, agreed?)

Anyways, I don't want to take all this information and direction and apply it entirely in a me, Me, ME way, but instead I would like to become more aware of who I am, how I tick, what makes me happy, and what is Gods plan for me. I think God created us for something, and I also think it is something we will be passionate about. This first really hit home for me as a teenager when I was reading The Dream Giver for Teens. For some reason I've forgetten it the past few years, I plan to revisit it now that I am at a new point in my life, this time I will probably use the original The Dream Giver by Bruce Wilkinson.  Check it out, I assure you its worth it!
"Will to be that self which one truly is."

-Soren Kierkegaard

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Wonderful Wednesday!

(Ha! Nailed it this time, with 2 hours to spare!)

When I was in high school (yes here comes a good ol' HS story...) we had a bible study 1 day a week in the morning before school, as a part of the morning we would share what we called "God Stops" -moments in your day that you stopped and noticed God working around you- it could be a flower growing on the side of the road, it could be an instructor available in their office unexpectedly, it could be just about anything... as the weeks went by and we all practiced noticing God Stops to share in the morning we noticed that we began to NOTICE... we are surrounded by beauty and joy everyday, we just have to stop and notice...

so some of my noticing-s for this week include:
  • The feel of clean sheets
  • Husband bringing home flowers for no reason at all- the most beautiful brilliant flowers I think I have ever gotten- yellows and purples and magentas! <3
  • Sunshine! I can never seem to get enough of it this time of year!
  • The daffodils popping up along the path I walk at work during lunch
  • The smell of fresh laundry (definitely apposed to dirty laundry!)
  • My early birthday fun present from husband -FUSHIGI!
  • My leftover-enchiladas turning out amazing tonight- I took leftovers from the refrigerator and the freezer mixed them together with some V8 and taco seasoning, popped it into the oven and 25 minutes later- perfection! *whew -lucky break there!
  • Some good conversations with family- you just can't beat them! 
  • Husband's impromptu invite to go walking the local trail, where we saw geese, ducks, great blue herons, cormorants, and egrets... little purple flowers, white flowers on the trees, and red leafy looking flowers!

One of the birds, not sure what it is called- Phil? Nicki? Zach? Any help here?

 This little guy is eating some crumbs that Phil tossed to him- it was so cute!

    Well there are a few from this week. Take a moment yourself to look around you and notice...
    "By having the courage to be simple, you shed the layers of meaningless complications."

    ~Alexandra Stoddard

    Sunday, March 27, 2011

    Husband was gone Friday night so it was ladies night for me! First time I have been completely alone at night since my college days- yes there was a freak-out moment late at night that involved pepper spray, locked doors, and... the ol' chair under the door knob routine- felt kind of foolish in the morning. What can I say I have an active imagination. *sigh*

    BUT other than that it was a great girl night. I stopped at Red Box and got not one, but TWO girl movies. Popped the first one into the DVD player grabbed one of my two-for-the-price-of-one  Ben and Jerry's Ice Cream pints... Half Baked won the coin toss... IT WAS DELISH! and sat in the Laz-e-Boy and watched "Love Happens" IMMEDIATELY followed by "Step up Three" I stopped the movies when I wanted to stop them, I baked lazagna for dinner after I ate all of the Half Baked, and then I proceeded to put the lazagna in the fridge, untouched - no judgement people!

    Over-all it was a pretty good night and I look forward to my next ladies night in.... lets say 2013! 

      Saturday, March 26, 2011

      Dos for Any Day...

       I was introduced to these different looks through the blogging expertise of 
      a new favorite blog of mine, if you have a moment to check it out it will be a fun refreshing hiatus for your soul.

      ANY-WA-AYS... Back to the Dos
      *not even sure if that is how you spell that 

      First up we have the Messy French Bun, I think this look is great for any saturday, on the beach, in the park, at the farmers market- its light and fun, but classic.
      For the how-to follow the link below.

      Next up, we have the fun  Three Twisted Buns, you like? 
      Click the link below for the tutorial.

      I love this look! 
      I am not sure if I am in love with the actual style 
      if it the gorgeous red hair and lips I am in love with! 
      Either way, I present to you option number three...

      And finally, the messy twisted chignon... 
      A look that can take you from work, to home or dinner. 
      Master this look and you'll always have an ace up your sleeve.

      (in-fact I think I am going to go practice right now!)  

      Cute Chignon

      *follow the links for how-to, photo credits, and some amazing bloggers 
      All the newest and latest trends need is time 
      to become an old-hat.

      -Alexandra Stoddard

      Thursday, March 24, 2011

      Thankful Thursday

      (again I am a day behind of when I planned on posting my list- oops!)

      I am thankful for:

      -my husband making me yummy cheese toasties for dinner (exactly what I wanted)
      -walks with friends- 4.5 miles baby!
      -girl talk
      -magazines- just finished Women's Health and moving on to Women's Day
      -Soft sweaters- snuggling in my comfy maroon one as we speak!
      -Color! I love color! I am so glad God created the world with color! I love the little pops of it that are springing up everywhere this time of year!
      - 2 for 1 Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream sale tomorrow! Woot woot! I am thinking Half-Baked AND Coffee Heath Bar Crunch!
      -A tall glass of cold water, in a glass glass of course!
      Sometime you just have to sing you heart out, 
      and not care who is listening.

      Wednesday, March 23, 2011

      Meet Husband, and yes when I look at him I always see him surrounded by a halo of light (and the hallelujah choirs in the background, of course!)
      "Give me books, fruit, French wine and 
      fine weather and a little music out of doors, 
      played by someone I do not know."
      --John Keats

      Monday, March 21, 2011

      Blogger Love

      I just stumbled across this blog and so far I have really enjoyed everything I have seen.

      You should definitely check out Diandra Ann Photography  who just moved from that blog to her new blog here

      I hope you enjoy her style as much as I have!

      Sunday, March 20, 2011

      Finish each day and be done with it. 

      You have done what you could; 

      some blunders and absurdities have crept in; 

      forget them as soon as you can. 

      Tomorrow is a new day; 

      you shall begin it serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense. 

      -Ralph Waldo Emerson

      We're on Vacation

      As I said yesterday husband and I have decided this weekend we are going to be "on vacation" We're staying home but doing things just because we want to, not because we have to and the things we do we aren't allowed to feel guilty about, neither are we allowed to feel guilty for NOT doing some stuff that needs to be done. -- So for vacation on Saturday we slept in then we walked to a local restaurant to have breakfast - husband had a Greek Omelet and I had pancakes! Later we went to the park and went for a walk-it was 74 out and sunny! We visited our favorite store- Bass Pro Shop and both bought some zip off hiking pants because "we're on vacation".

      For lunch we got Arby's to go and took it to a pick-nick table overlooking the water and ate it there.  After we finished eating we walked down to the water and skipped stones, picked up sea glass and Phil even found a pair of camo pants that has washed ashore- same exact pair he had been looking at in Bass Pro Shop, we he put them in a bag and he decided he would clean them up for himself, they were even his size. "Gift of the sea" he says, I agree.

      Then we went downtown to do some Antiquing. I found a pin I liked and Husband got a... harpoon! (He turned to me when I asked if he was serious and said "we're on vacation" I couldn't argue with that!) Then we were  going to go fishing but we were happily worn out so we went home and I started another book and husband played with his new toys. I stayed up until 1am reading, but you know what? Its ok- because "we're on vacation"

      Friday, March 18, 2011

      Thank the Lord its Friday!!! It has been one crazy week!

      So today husband and I decided this weekend to be on Vacation... no we aren't going anywhere, and we don't really have anything planned. What we mean by being on vacation is we get to do whatever we want, whenever we want and we aren't allowed to feel one bit guilty about it! So tonight, Husband made dinner, I lounged around in a dress, I read a whole book, Husband watched LOST, and I am not setting the alarm clock. This is a big deal people!

      Oh so random! I saw a fox today! In the middle of the city! It was right next to the hospital, I was driving home from work and there it was! In the middle of the day (well 4pm, but still!) I took a picture, very blurry, but what can you do?

      Thursday, March 17, 2011

      Thankful Thursday

      (I changed the title, because  I am a day late -shhhh)

      Things I am thankful for:

      -My husband- he is the best in the whole world!
      -My new business- I am really excited about developing it and it gives me a new spring in my step!
      -A good hair day- thank the Lord!
      -Crock Pots- love walking into a house after a long day at work and knowing dinner is ready
      -Flowering trees- soooo pretty! They look like a fairy tale!
      -Chocolate- need I say more?
      -Family- always there for me, they get me, and I love them
      -Gmail- keeps me connected and has a WONDERFUL spam blocker
      -Books... love reading them and decorating with them

      So what are you thankful for? I would love to hear- shoot me an email or leave a comment!

      Tuesday, March 15, 2011

      "The tree that never had to fight
      for sun or sky, air or light,
      who lived out on the open plane
      and always got its share of rain
      never became a forest king,
      but lived and died a scrubby thing.

      Good timber does not grow at ease,
      the stronger the wind the tougher the trees.

      -Author Unknown

      Monday, March 14, 2011

      "It is a funny thing about life; 

      if you refuse to accept anything but the best 

      you very often get it."  


      ~W. Somerset Maugham

      Friday, March 11, 2011

      Isn't this a crazy awesome idea? I think it would be great to have at touristy places... Mackinaw Island, Virginia Beach, Hawaii, Paris- just imagine you are in some beautiful location and your tired of walking but you don't want to join the crazy motorist world again (come on you ARE on vacation) then- BAM! You see a  bike dispenser vending machine ! There you go! You pull one out and off you go. Haha! I think it has potential- we'll see...

      Thursday, March 10, 2011

      Someone just showed me this site- it is so fun! There are so many different things you can do! I think I am going to become addicted! 

      It is so easy and its free!

      Check it out! You'll love it!
      Go here to make your own sweet pictures.

      Wednesday, March 9, 2011

      "You were born an original. Don't die a copy."
      -John Mason

      Wonderful Wednesday list....

      Goodmorning Everyone!

      I have been entertaining the idea of 1 day's post each week be the "Thankful/Makes Me Happy" List.... we'll see if Wednesday is the day or not.

      For todays list:
      • my mom coming to visit in 7 hours! (Family lives 800+ Miles away, so this is a big deal people!)
      • Fresh Market Éclairs- oh my word! Sooooo good! If any of you have a Fresh Market near by you MUST try these! But a little tip: try to get them right after they make them- the chocolate is softer- yum!
      • my alarm clock playing a good song for me to wake up to- "Good morning Brittney!"
      • clean floor by my bed so I didn't stub my toes on anything this morning (inspired by a visit from the mother)
      • Husband being so awesome and helping clean- ladies if you find a man who will help you clean for his mother-in-law to come and visit you grab a hold of him tight- he even cleaned my bath tub for me!
      • birds chirping outside my window- SPRING is coming!!! Yeah!!!
      Alright off I go to work... have a happy/thankful day! I would love to hear about it!!!

      Tuesday, March 8, 2011

      "How does one become a butterfly? 
      You must want to fly so much that you are willing to give up being a caterpillar" 
      Trina Paulus

      Monday, March 7, 2011

      Which would you chose?

      Hahahaha!!! I love watching these kids! The first little boy is my favorite I think... you can watch them try to trick themselves- so adorable! This is such a cute video that demonstrates something we all experience daily. Do we take the immediate gratification or do we wait for the bigger future reward? 
      Which would you choose? 

      I am a delayed gratification type of gal- which sometimes drives my husband crazy! But I have to say he has taught me to loosen up a little and drink that hot chocolate now instead of saving it for "something special" that never comes or I forget to celebrate with hot chocolate- instead I make myself that special Carmel and Sea Salt Chocolate on any old day, because I deserve it and it makes me happy! And sometimes that all the "something special" you need- Thanks Husband!


      Sunday, March 6, 2011

      Its a tromping sort of day...

      Today is a warm rainy Sunday here in the south... the kind that says come, bring your hot tea, your warm blanket, wool socks and book. Come curl up on the sofa with me.... we will read books and take naps and smile quietly at one another.

      You know the kind of day I am talking about. A soft gray day with a soft drizzly rain that turns everything to marshlands.

      As a child on days like today my mom would hand me my water-boots and a wind jacket and send me out to go "tromping."  Tromping is when you go walk aimlessly about in the backyard, woods, or park (wherever you happen to be turned loose) and you make up stories and adventures that keep you entertained for hours, and then when you come in from cold, hunger, or lack of light mom has a warm bowl of tomato soup and a grilled cheese (cut into triangles) waiting for you.  Tromping days are the most perfect of days. They start with an adventure and end with contentment.

      As an adult there is less hiking outside on these drizzly days, but they still hold a sort of magic to them... I suppose its the adventure of a book or even the adventures you create in your mind that make the day so why don't you come, lets go tromping...

      Saturday, March 5, 2011

      "It is never too late
      to be what you thought you could have been!" 
      - Unknown

      Bead for Life

      I just HAVE to share this with you- I just LOVE them and I can't keep it to myself any longer!!!!

      My in-laws introduced me to a program called Bead for Life. It is really amazing the oportunity it provides for the women involved. Here is a quick excerpt from their website (linked above)
      Our goal is for our members to be independent of BeadforLife within 18 months by being able to support themselves within the Ugandan economy.  To assist members in launching their own small businesses or in creating new revenue streams, we provide entrepreneurial training, facilitate savings accounts, and make business funds available.  In the rural areas our program focuses on agricultural development.

       I love love love this jewelry- because it is made out of paper it is super light and lays really well. It is coated to make the beads slightly shiny and water resistant.

      I wish I had them in every color!

      You can buy them here at the Bead for Life Store.

      By purchasing these products you are supporting family, community, the environment, and fashion! I love it!!!

      Thursday, March 3, 2011

      Make Me Happy....

      That title reminds me of the song- "If it makes you happy..." ok- anyways! 

      This year it has been my goal to try and have a more positive outlook on life. One way I have tried to encourage this is to make a "Makes Me Happy" list every couple days (I tried to do it everyday at first, but that wasn't going to last long, so I decided to loosen up a little- every couple of days counts too...right?) So here goes, here is my list for this morning:

      -hugs from husband
      -Simply Orange orange juice with mango- yumm! If you haven't tried this stuff grab some next time you see it on sale, its like... a Hawaiian vacation for your taste-buds!
      -birds chirping outside my window (a sure sign its almost spring! please hurry!)
      -good talks with family last night
      -Banana bread for breakfast
      -warm toes
      -fresh flowers

      (I always feel like I am singing The Sound of Musics "Favorite Things" when I make my lists!)

      What are a few things that make you happy or you are thankful for?

      Wednesday, March 2, 2011

      Yes, Yes, its true...

      I have a confession... I love quotes and little essays or tales. In-fact it could be considered an obsession. Yes I know, I know, there is more to life than the occasional inspirational excerpt, but... I just love them! And I refuse to be sorry about it! So, here is an oldie but goodie, one of my faves- Enjoy!

      The Star Thrower
      by Loren Eiseley

      Once upon a time, there was a wise man who used to go to the ocean to do his writing. He had a habit of walking on the beach before he began his work.

      One day, as he was walking along the shore, he looked down the beach and saw a human figure moving like a dancer. He smiled to himself at the thought of someone who would dance to the day, and so, he walked faster to catch up.

      As he got closer, he noticed that the figure was that of a young man, and that what he was doing was not dancing at all. The young man was reaching down to the shore, picking up small objects, and throwing them into the ocean.

      He came closer still and called out "Good morning! May I ask what it is that you are doing?"

      The young man paused, looked up, and replied "Throwing starfish into the ocean."

      "I must ask, then, why are you throwing starfish into the ocean?" asked the somewhat startled wise man.

      To this, the young man replied, "The sun is up and the tide is going out. If I don't throw them in, they'll die."

      Upon hearing this, the wise man commented, "But, young man, do you not realize that there are miles and miles of beach and there are starfish all along every mile? You can't possibly make a difference!"

      At this, the young man bent down, picked up yet another starfish, and threw it into the ocean. As it met the water, he said, "It made a difference for that one."