NEW YEAR ~ 2015

My Path

I can’t believe it is 2015 – THE YEAR I WILL TURN FORTY, TRAVEL TO ITALY and so many other amazing things…

CHILDREN: my oldest daughter will turn sixteen this year and get her driver’s license.  I am still in shock that she has grown up so fast.  I pray for her to remember to call upon God for all of her needs; this commitment will make her life so much easier.

FRIENDSHIP: my life has taken a turn in a direction I didn’t think it would ever go.  I have the most amazing friends in my life, helping lead me to figuring out who I am and reminding me that is okay to be just that.  I am forever thankful and pray that God blesses them all because of the unconditional love they have bestowed upon me.

BUSINESS: my career is about to take off.  I have planted so many seeds and am looking forward to watching them bloom into amazing opportunities, bearing profitable fruit.  I pray God will help keep me focused throughout the entire process.

TRAVEL: all of my efforts have led me to the travel my heart so desires.  I have wanted to make the voyage to Italy for as long as I can remember.  I believe all of my hard-earned life lessons have helped lead me to this moment in my life.  I finally have the self-confidence I need to go for it.

God be with me.

Happy New Year!
A~

Happy Half-Birthday To Me!

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I can’t believe that I am 39 1/2 today. In exactly 6 months I will be in Milan, Italy setting off on one of the greatest adventures of my life. It seems impossible that I’ve made it this far. The time is going by so fast. I have made so many plans in consideration of the process that I would go through leading up to this trip, that I have yet to complete. I made goals that I haven’t accomplished and promises that I haven’t kept, yet am at peace with it all. I am accepting the fact that I can only do my best each and every day and on some days my best is pure awesomeness, and on other days my best is an embarrassment.

I am learning to not be ashamed of my short-comings. I set huge goals and they are hard to achieve, but I like living like this! I would much rather make promises of amazing accomplishments and great success to myself and come up short, than to never dream. I do not want to except less than everything I am capable of in my life. I want to strive for my set goals and when needed, fail at accomplishing them. The process makes me whole.

I have fallen flat on my face, so to speak, so many times in the past 39 1/2 years. I have laughed and cried through it all because I am truly living. I am out there. I am alive. And people are taking notice.

The next 6 months are going to be amazing for many reasons. First and foremost, God is with me. I am also surrounded by friends that love me and make me better daily.  And, my children are paying close attention to see if I can do all that I need to do for myself and still find the time to love them. It’s not easy. I want to work, plan, write, build relationships; make my way in this life! But, without taking the time to be with God, care for my health and the needs of my beautiful daughters first, my best laid plans may never see the light of day.

May God lead us all to the light…and me to Italy in 181 days.  xo

Gateway

Bregno, Andrea 1480's GatewayI wake up each day with a sigh of relief and a prayer of thanks in my heart.  My mind always contains a long list of desires that I hope to accomplish in the blessing of another day here on Earth.  Some days, I am so overwhelmed by the possibilities that I lay quietly and cry.  The powerful feeling of hope, brought on by the opportunity for another chance to succeed, is the fuel that lights my fire.  My gateway to life is open and all I have to do is get out of bed to receive it.

As soon as my feet hit the ground, I am on the go.  Raising my children is an adventure in it’s self.  My life of details is one that, in the moment seems impossible at times, but in the end I know I will never regret.  My girls rock my world and I am forever changed for the better because I am their mother.

My work is diverse and something I love…LOVE…to do!  I joke that I will work all of my days.  Why would I retire when I am having so much fun?  I am challenged every day and have the opportunity to meet people, build relationships and solve problems.  Sales has always been my niche and I love that I am able to do it and do it well.  My desire to help my clients is what funds my passions…ITALY included!

My friends are the best!  The people that love me for who I am, no matter what crazy ideas I come up with.  The people that set out on a series of adventures because they care too much for me to allow me to do it alone.  The people who pray for me at night because they know I am lonely at times and want the best for me.  I couldn’t do it without a little help from my friends.

My gateway to life, handed to me by God, is something so precious and fragile that I want to hold onto it forever.  I am not done yet!  I still have too many things that I want to do.  I have too much love to share, too many adventures to be had and too many people to lift up.  I want to be hugely successful in this life, so I can giveback some of the light that fills my heart and spirit, allowing others to do and feel the same.

The gateway to heaven is right here on Earth.  I pray to stay and walk through the gateway of opportunity and do what is right and good.  I have 299 days to go until 40 years old; 6 decades, 9 months, 3 weeks and 5 days until 100 years old.  I better keep busy, getting busy.  I hope the same for you.  xo

 

 

 

 

Forgiveness

Riley's Prize Winning Art
I had to forgive myself today.  I have been buried with work the past few days, my daily chores and countless hours of volunteering in my community trying to support my local PTA and RELAY FOR LIFE.  While these are all good things for me to be doing, I am exhausted.  It was one o’clock in the morning when I decided to go to bed instead of writing my blog.  Once in bed, the wind howled all night long and 
tossed and turned.  I hate when I let myself down.

Today was another day like the day before.  I worked and worked until I found out that I had an engagement that I had to attend this evening.  I did not get everything on my TO DO LIST completed and was feeling angry at myself for another day of personal disappointment.  I missed my language lesson, yet again.  I did not review my Italian map to help plot my course.  I did not complete my database for the upcoming community event that I am helping put on.  I did not even do the breakfast dishes or dust, as I had planned, or catch up on my blog for DAY 468.

Feeling defeated and incompetent, I heading to the event that was waiting for me.  For someone who is joyful most of my days, I was feeling and acting closer to cranky than happy.  As I approached the event, I saw her and everything changed.

I suddenly forgave myself for all of my shortcomings.  I was suddenly filled with joy and the idea that there is so much hope in the world.  My youngest daughter was waiting to show me her artwork that had been picked to be displayed at one of our local school’s art shows.  Her kind face and her presence, offered me forgiveness and I am changed forever.

As if some kind of gift from the heaven’s, my daughter took First Place in her category.  She will get to go to Division Finals and may have a chance of making it to State.  Whether she wins or not, does not matter.  What matters is that she tried.  She put art into the world, not to win, but because she loves it and because of that she will always be a winner.

Here’s to another day of opportunities to be ourselves and ultimate forgiveness for doing so!

Adventure

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I encourage everyone I know to do what they love.  There is something liberating about doing what you know you were meant to do.  Many people work their entire young lives in order to retire, in hopes of being able to finally do what they love.  It is my belief and desire to turn that idea on it’s head.  I want to do what I know I am supposed to be doing right now.  I want to live my best day today because who knows how long we will be here to experience life’s adventures.

I love hiking.  I have hiked on a small scale most of my life but it wasn’t until two years ago, after my marriage fell apart, that I decided to go on a backpacking adventure in Yosemite.  The idea was to cleanse my spirit and rejuvenate my soul.  I miraculously found an awesome guide service that helped me make it happen.  My oldest daughter and I celebrated her birthday by hiking for six days in one of the most beautiful places on Earth.  We summited Mount Hoffmann, Cloud’s Rest and the iconic, Half Dome and through the process, changed our lives for the better.  I didn’t write a blog everyday leading up to the big adventure but I did make the commitment to myself and made it happen.

I plan to look into the option of backpacking through Italy.  I would love to travel with my Gregory pack instead of heavy luggage.  I imagine how much easier it would be with a pack to access the trains and stay in inexpensive hostiles through portions of my trip.  I love the idea of having my hiking boots on and making my way under the Tuscan sun.

I also love snowboarding.  It took my twenty years to get back on my board.  While I was married and raising my children, I didn’t believe I could be adventurous and participate in the “dangerous” activities that I loved so much.  I had no idea how much I missed doing what I loved, until last year when I was invited to snowboard in Tahoe.  I was petrified that I was too old to go back to the sport but I was determined to overcome my fears and try again.  It has been 1 year today since I decided to go for it and I have to say, it truly changed my life.

I have 478 days left until my 40th birthday and I planned on traveling to Italy during that time but now I wonder if I should wait until later in the year.  I would love to add snowboarding on Gran Paradiso or Monte Cervino.  I would love to experience the snow of the Alps.  What a ride that would be!

I really love adventures.

Moonstruck

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Amore!  What in the world or beyond is more powerful than love?  Everything I have ever done, in one way or another has been based upon my love for something.  Love presents itself in so many different ways.  

Today it presented itself as: a ruling from the Supreme Court of Texas, a piece of cheesecake, a sticky note from my youngest daughter, a sock in the arm from my oldest daughter, the rain that is finally pouring from the sky here in Southern California and my damn dog, who will not leave my side.  While I prefer some of these forms of love over others, they are all still expressions of the powerful energy that most of us need to feel complete.  

Love can send us to outer-space and into the depths of hell, in the matter of seconds.  The whirlwind effect seems almost unreal and for certain, unfair at times.  Love requires us to think and work, to strive for more and at the same time, to be satisfied with what we have.  Love can be seen by others, even when you attempt to hide it. Love has a mind of it’s own in a sense. Who in the history of the world, has ever been able to control it or live without it?  

The process of writing this blog is a reflection of my love for myself and the idea that dreams can come true.  It is a love letter to my daughters and all of the hopeful travelers in the world.  It is difficult and wonderful all at the same time to attempt to accomplish the sharing of my love for whatever the topic is for the day. I believe this blog in some strange way, represents the lose and gain that we experience when we love something or someone.

I too, like the character in Moonstruck, had decided to give up on love and settle for a life of simplicity and what I thought was normalcy.  Until I woke up and turned everything upside down because without love in my life, I wouldn’t have survived another day.  It was more important for me to show my daughter’s that love is worth the chance that you might make a mistake.  That a relationship based on love is worth every effort.  The effort that it takes to get you where you know you need to be, and the hard work and suffering it may take to get there.  Love is worth that moment in the moonlight that no one but you can understand.

I wish you all love.  Find it, care for it, treasure it and never, ever give up on it.  xo