April showers…

From “false spring” to “third winter” to “April showers,” the weather in MN lately has been nuts. It’s messing with my mental health. When the sun is shining, it’s so much easier to be in a good mood. I have a window in my office and it’s nice and bright. When the weather is gloomy, my mood tends to follow. Lately it has rained or snowed most days. We didn’t get the three feet of snow or the ice storms that North Dakota received recently, so I’m thankful for that. They did need the moisture, but it was quite a mess. The one day it was close to 70 here, it rained and was windy.

I tried to do some stretches while at my stand up desk today in an effort to sit less. My vertigo has improved from the physical therapy, so that’s wonderful. Since I’m working from home, I don’t get many steps in per day. It’s one of the things I’m working on. Recently diagnosed diabetic, I need to get some more activity in each day. It will probably help my mood also. It just gets difficult to get any to go outside to walk when it’s so chilly. I’m a “fair weather walker.” It’s supposed to rain again Friday and Saturday so I’m not sure if that means April is going out like a lion or like a lamb.

This Saturday, I’ll be helping out at an Expo in Fargo, ND. It’s the first time I’ve helped my friend and mentor with one of her shows. I’ll have my books there for sale also. (Ramada Inn -Fargo 10-5) It will be outside of my comfort zone but I’m very excited. I’m going up the night before and staying over. Some long overdue self care is in order! Although I’ll be missing the Sandy’s donuts as originally planned, but it will still be good. I’ve had a lot of changes in the last year, and I am looking forward to a brief pause. We often neglect ourselves or forget to take care of our wellbeing. Too busy looking out for others, our own needs take a back burner. We wait for someday or think of maybe later. It’s easy for time to slip by and nothing has changed.

The past three weeks have made me focus on myself. I’ve had to be more intentional about what I eat, when I eat and how much water I’m getting. I’m tracking food, blood sugar, weight and activity. I was in auto pilot for too long. This can be a good change.

Peace be with you on your journey of enough. Taking care of yourself isn’t selfish, it’s necessary. You’re worth it! I am too!

I didn’t breathe…

This was me on Saturday at my niece’s wedding. It was 90 degrees in ND on a hot summer night. The gym (where the reception & dance were held) was air conditioned, but it just couldn’t keep up with having over 300 people, the humid weather and doors opening. The humidity isn’t the reason why I didn’t breathe. I didn’t breathe because I was running around, trying to make it all perfect, and I failed to fully take it all in. The day went by almost as fast as my own wedding and I didn’t stop and take a breath.

My oldest sister’s oldest daughter got married Saturday. My husband and I were asked to be a host couple, and I offered to bake cupcakes. My love language is “acts of service,” followed by “words of affirmation.” People who know me will totally understand. I like to “do” and to help. (If baking was a love language, that would be on the list too. We made around 400 cupcakes with homemade frosting.) I’m not sure what a typical host couple does at weddings, but my planning & control freak sides take over and I become the Energizer bunny. I helped with my nephew’s wedding a few years ago also. The reception was in the same place, so I was somewhat familiar. It’s an old school, no longer used as a school but as an antique shop and community center. The gym is beautiful and makes a great wedding reception venue. The town itself isn’t really even a town anymore. They don’t appear on the list of ND town census. There is literally one street. I think there are 2 or 3 houses.

Big dark thunderstorm clouds loomed on the horizon as we took some family pictures outside. The temperature dropped a few degrees, and it appeared as though we would get drenched, but the rains stayed away. The wedding was beautiful. My niece was stunning and her groom had the biggest smile… just as it should be. She had planned everything, had a budget, an itinerary, and a vision of how things would look. It all looked magical. Everyone seemed to have a good time. It was hot, but we had lots of bottled water for the guests. There were snacks and bars and hundreds of cupcakes.

“You should really sit down.” I’m pretty sure I heard that phrase 20 times that night. In my mind, a good event is one where things are tidy and there are extra paper towels and toilet paper and the garbages are taken care of. The snack table is refilled, the lemonade is cold, there is plenty of water and the tables are cleared of plates & cups and half eaten bars. That was my job, at least in my head. For as many times as someone told me to stop running around, my niece and her new husband said, “thank you.” A sincere, loving, heart felt appreciation for what was being done… so they could just enjoy their wedding.

One of my aunts sent me a note the next day. She said, “I watched you scan the room and take care of every detail.” I didn’t do this for recognition or praise. I did it as an act of service. A few years ago, after my brother-in-law’s farm accident, we didn’t know if he’d get to walk his daughter down the aisle… but he did. I also

did this for him and my sister, so they could also enjoy the night.

I did dance a few songs with my husband. (We can two step to almost anything.) I wish I would have stopped a little more though, just to breathe deep. I should have taken it all in. I should have absorbed that love and joy and newness of marriage.

Peace be with you on your journey of enough. May you stop and take a breath amidst the chaos. May you look for the good and focus on the blessings. The more you focus on the blessings, the more abundant they become. They sure were abundant for these newlyweds. Wishing them many years of wedded bliss. I’d do it all again, but next time, I’ll breathe more.

Thoughts are powerful…

Are you familiar with the saying, “Be careful what you wish for?” Thoughts are powerful. What we focus on, we attract. Think the world is crappy? You will look for validation of that and either see, find or experience crappy things. Think things are great? You will also find validation of those thoughts… you will look for the good in people, find the bright spot in the day or make someone else smile.

Recently, I’ve been lamenting about how quickly my sons are growing. They are more independent, one is driving and they just don’t need me as much. Then Myles broke his leg. I’m not sure how much the leg splint or the cast weigh, but for a 12 year old, who isn’t much more than 100 lbs, it’s a significant amount. He cannot bend over. He needs help with many daily tasks that seemed like no big deal prior to February 2nd, when his tib/fib fractures changed his life. He suddenly needed me. My husband made the comment that I must love being needed again. I got defensive. “Woah, I never wished for him to break his leg.” Well, no, not directly, but he does now need help.

Wheew. That was a tough one. It really brought home the power of thoughts. I’ve said to myself several times, “I’m too heavy” or “my stomach is too fat.” I recently lost almost 30 pounds. And then something happened. I stepped on the scale and couldn’t believe the number. I hadn’t been that weight in a while. And although I should have been happy, it scared me. My identity as overweight was changing. So I ended up eating things I had avoided for several months. I gained 10lbs back and was subconsciously trying to get back to that overweight me I had identified with for so long. Now I need to shift my thoughts back to the positive. I need to remember my “why” … why I wanted to get healthier in the first place. It’s not a vanity thing or a competition. I want to live longer. I want to honor this body I’ve been given and keep it around for a while.

Is your glass half empty or half full? When life hands you lemons, will you make lemonade? (These lemons in the picture were from my sister’s tree in CA last week. Dallas are one like an orange!) If you knew how powerful your thoughts were, would you try to change them? Every time you think of something negative, try to think of 2 or 3 things positive. It’s more difficult than it sounds. I’m not sure if this is one of the coldest or snowiest winters in MN, but it’s probably on the top 10 list for sure. Complaining about the weather won’t make it sunny & warm. Thinking positively won’t make it warm either but it certainly won’t make you miserable. Might as well put on some extra layers or a heated blanket & grab a glass of lemonade!

I wish you peace on your journey of enough. May your glass be half full, but more importantly, be refillable.

Thoughts are powerful…

Are you familiar with the saying, “Be careful what you wish for?” Thoughts are powerful. What we focus on, we attract. Think the world is crappy? You will look for validation of that and either see, find or experience crappy things. Think things are great? You will also find validation of those thoughts… you will look for the good in people, find the bright spot in the day or make someone else smile.

Recently, I’ve been lamenting about how quickly my sons are growing. They are more independent, one is driving and they just don’t need me as much. Then Myles broke his leg. I’m not sure how much the leg splint or the cast weigh, but for a 12 year old, who isn’t much more than 100 lbs, it’s a significant amount. He cannot bend over. He needs help with many daily tasks that seemed like no big deal prior to February 2nd, when his tib/fib fractures changed his life. He suddenly needed me. My husband made the comment that I must love being needed again. I got defensive. “Woah, I never wished for him to break his leg.” Well, no, not directly, but he does now need help.

Wheew. That was a tough one. It really brought home the power of thoughts. I’ve said to myself several times, “I’m too heavy” or “my stomach is too fat.” I recently lost almost 30 pounds. And then something happened. I stepped on the scale and couldn’t believe the number. I hadn’t been that weight in a while. And although I should have been happy, it scared me. My identity as overweight was changing. So I ended up eating things I had avoided for several months. I gained 10lbs back and was subconsciously trying to get back to that overweight me I had identified with for so long. Now I need to shift my thoughts back to the positive. I need to remember my “why” … why I wanted to get healthier in the first place. It’s not a vanity thing or a competition. I want to live longer. I want to honor this body I’ve been given and keep it around for a while.

Is your glass half empty or half full? When life hands you lemons, will you make lemonade? (These lemons in the picture were from my sister’s tree in CA last week. Dallas ate one like an orange!) If you knew how powerful your thoughts were, would you try to change them? Every time you think of something negative, try to think of 2 or 3 things positive. It’s more difficult than it sounds. I’m not sure if this is one of the coldest or snowiest winters in MN, but it’s probably on the top 10 list for sure. Complaining about the weather won’t make it sunny & warm. Thinking positively won’t make it warm either but it certainly won’t make you miserable. Might as well put on some extra layers or a heated blanket & grab a glass of lemonade!

I wish you peace on your journey of enough. May your glass be half full, but more importantly, be refillable.