Monday, January 31, 2011

do it with a heart wide open.

what i learned from nursing school and nursing..

..somehow, everything always gets done. can plan all you want, but in between now and what you've planned, eighteen other things will come up to take care of. may not be easy, but it's all do-able.

..always take time, at some point during the day, to do something other than study or work.. work out, watch the bachelor, read, listen to music, write..

..take it one thing at a time.. instead of trying to do eight things at once.

i'm carrying these lessons with me as i get ready to start grad school at hollins wednesday. it's a busy week.. my planner is filling up by the second.. and i'm literally surrounded by paperwork. the nerd in me, though, likes it this way and is excited for all that's to come.

today's lesson.. carry belief.

Friday, January 28, 2011

i remember you painting sunflowers in your room.

i was visiting with my grandparents today, and my grandmaw had the idea to move a chair from their living room to the basement. according to my grandpaw, though, the chair wouldn't fit through the basement door. my grandmaw joked, "will it fit through the window?" we laughed, and my grandpaw told her, "windows are smaller than doors."

for some reason, those words stuck with me through the day, and i knew there was a lesson in there somewhere. it didn't hit me until now, though, what the lesson was (is).

seemed, for a while, i was always looking for another option, a way to make it work, even when i thought it wouldn't. it seemed i had throw it out there, to at least try it. and then, when i finally realized the window was in fact too small, i ended up choosing to only walk through doors.. things i knew i could fit in. more cautious, less trusting, limiting myself. lately, though, it seems i'm getting back to giving it a shot.. and the endless possibilities only discovered by finding my way in through the window.

so, today's lesson is this.. as it turns out, doors are smaller than windows..

Thursday, January 27, 2011

i get the feeling she won't forget.

today's lesson.. ever exchange..

so, i was talking to my friend tonight as i do every night (still am, actually), and we were discussing the value of these nightly conversations. kind of fitting that two writers-at-heart spend their evenings sharing written texts back and forth. it's a neat thing and a neat feeling, to say the very least, and it's especially neat to me to watch it all happen.

"that was a good feeling, knowing i hadn’t missed it, knowing i wasn’t looking back on it and saying to myself, “so, that’s when.” no, it wasn’t like that. for once. instead, i lived each piece of it, watching as our exchange of words every night exchanged us, in turn.." (from the book..)

and that's all for now :)

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

take the way home that leads back.

i'm sitting here watching the counting crows on tv. as much as i love their music, their lyrics have always gotten to me.

a sea of flowers won't bloom without the rain..

from where you think you'll end up to the state that you're in, your reflection approaches and then recedes again..

wasted time, running scared, when all love needs is to be believed in..

she has trouble acting normal when she's nervous..

make a circle in the sand.. make a halo with your hands.. i'll make a place for you to land..

she walks along the edge of where the ocean meets the land, just like she's walking on a wire in the circus..

she's nothing but porcelain underneath her skin..

every word is nonsense, but i understand..

get right to the heart of matters.. it's the heart that matters more..

okay, there are about a million others. i read their lyrics a lot, kind of like reading poetry.

last night, i found a version of "sullivan street" (one of my favorite counting crows' songs) by sara bareilles (another of my favorites) pretty amazing. i think my all-time favorite song of theirs, though, is "anna begins."

i spent a good while monday running to the sounds of the counting crows. oddly enough, they're a pretty good band to run to. who would've guessed.

i'm not entirely sure where i'm going with all this.. all i know is, it's been a counting crows-filled week, and i'm enjoying it.. the reading of the lyrics, the listening of the music. it has stuck with me for years. i think the lesson here is this.. get back to basics..

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

go out walking in the sun.

clowns scare me. i'm supposed to wear glasses to drive. i like picture frames. commercials crack me up.. i was sharing these things, and many others, with a friend of mine tonight. it's funny to think about the new music, the new city, the new ways of life i once tried over the past few years. seems i was always trying to make something fit.. always trying to "find myself." nowadays, though, especially recently, things have changed. it's no longer about finding who i am anymore; it's about realizing i already know me.. and living it.

i wrote the following in the "book" about a week ago. seems like it fits in here..

maybe that was the big secret all along, finding someone in whom you found yourself, instead of looking for yourself in someone else..

today's lesson.. find brown eyes that match (i stole that one..)

Monday, January 24, 2011

make a circle in the sand; make a halo with your hands; I’ll make a place for you to land.

i'm blessed with the chance to live at home, to live with my family (my best friends.. including the pup). we sit down and have dinner together many nights a week, just as we have always done, catching up on our days and laughing about the random topics that never fail to come up. and many nights, i'm blessed with the opportunity to get to spend the rest of my evening with my family as well. like tonight, when we (and the silly puppy) shared our time together until it was time to say goodnight.

it's hard for me to believe i lived away from my family for as long as i did, for any length of time, really. homesickness doesn't even begin to describe what i felt at that time. i remember other people saying, "well, you're just a few hours away." and i was. but that didn't change the fact that i wasn't here. where i'm supposed to be. ever since i came back and moved back in, i have appreciated being here, being with my family, so much more than i could ever say.

i have the most unbelievable support and love and care surrounding me every single day and people who would literally do anything for me. from fixing my computer (because i'm a moron!), to helping me get ready for grad school.. from supporting my writing, my going back to school, my every decision to taking care of me and doing so many things for me (so many).. i'm not sure what i would do without my family. not just because of the things they do for me, but because of the way they surround me with support and love and care.

today's lesson? i love tacos. just kidding. today's real lesson? it's good to be home.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

hoping i would see the world through both my eyes.

i went running outside today for the first time in.. well.. a very long time. i basically ran in a circle, up and down the same street, listening to john mayer ("3x5" happens to be a great running song) and feeling my nose freeze little by little. i ran down the hill, around the cul-de-sac, and up the hill again until i reached a certain spot.. then, turned and ran down the hill again. the last time i did my lap, i saw this certain spot from a distance, and i felt i was running toward it, trying to get there. then it hit me.. not until that final lap had that particular thought occurred to me. for the rest of my run, my attention was, well, on the run itself and the music playing in my nearly-frozen ears. that "realization" that i was enjoying the "journey" (sounds corny, but go with it), instead of focusing on the destination, kind of struck me.

today's lesson.. keep your eyes on the road.

Friday, January 21, 2011

all this sunlight feels warm on my face today.

after painting pottery with the girls tonight, and sharing lots o' laughs, we headed to mcdonald's for french fries. sitting in the parking lot, enjoying our snack, all of us started to laugh at the thought of our nights out. "we are a strange group," i told them. "but i wouldn't change it." and it's true. our nights out might not be exciting to others, but it's what we enjoy. genuinely. today's lesson, i've decided, is this.. laugh 'til you snort.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

i'm only this far and only tomorrow leads my way.

oh snap. it's my 100th blog entry.
in flow today (the pilates/yoga/tai chi combo class at the gym), when i was supposed to be concentrating on the moves, the class itself, i instead found myself off in la la land, thinking of other things. even during the relaxation time at the end of the class, when we were lying on the flow, eyes closed, when we're supposed to, as the instructor sometimes says, "acknowledge your thoughts and then let them go" (ha), i couldn't calm my thoughts (then again, it could have been the bombastic music in the room next door or the sound of large weights being dropped in the open gym beside us). i kept thinking of what was ahead, what's coming up, which i do a lot anyway. somewhere along the way, i realized i have a little less than two weeks before grad school starts and before i become a full-time student again. i have a feeling things will get a lot busier come february (in a good way). so, i want to make sure and take full advantage of all the time i have now.. i just have to be sure and recognize it at the time without letting the thoughts of tomorrow creep in. to get the most out of flow, the most out of my free nights, the most out of reading books for fun instead of reading school books. the list goes on and on. the lesson here, then, is this.. enjoy your january before your february.

["we should live in this time now and have every minute of it.."]

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

these lessons that we've learned here have only just begun.

i love finding those songs.. the ones i end up listening to about a hundred times in a row.. in one night. i first heard it tuesday night at the gym.. during our cool down for "pump.." and it just got to me. i have no idea who this guy is (i'm thinking.. american idol?), but.. wow.

i just hit "replay" for the third time.. this will literally go on for the next couple hours.

i have to say, this is pretty exciting for me. this is probably the first of those songs for me this year. i realize it's just a song, but "just a song" is always an understatement to me.. especially when it comes to ones like this. i guess this year i should start an altogether different kind of song list.. for the songs that really get me ("replay" number four..).. but i'll get back to that later.

i also love finding those books.. the ones i have trouble putting down.. which, if i'm honest, hasn't happened a lot in my life. the first book i stayed up reading to finish because i couldn't stop? to kill a mockingbird. love walked in is another all-time favorite of mine, along with eat, pray, love. now, it's water for elephants. who knew i'd like a book about a traveling circus. seriously, though, i can hardly stop reading it.

"replay" number five..

i love finding things that become another piece of me. sometimes, it's a song that very quickly makes its way onto my ipod. sometimes, it's a new book that makes its way into my collection. they all, for one reason or another, remind me of the things, and more importantly, the people, who make up my life.. and the laughter surrounding it all.. who have always added their pieces to me, who have become pieces of me.

so, what's the lesson here? if it moves you, it's worth holding on to.

["you're a shell-picker of the pickiest kind, but you always find the ones to keep.."]

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

the laughter keeps us coming back for more.

i think i've literally been laughing for the past six hours for one reason or another. from the crazy launch night at the gym (i now have a temporary tattoo on my left arm of a body builder), to the usual girl talk in the parking lot (jump!), to the overall silliness with the family tonight (i love tacos!), to the conversation i'm having now with my friend about a movie (together, they become the sensation of the streets crowds).. i haven't stopped laughing. thankfully, almost every day is like this. today just happened to be an extra-funny day.

i was sitting here trying to think of a lesson for today, thinking back on the afternoon and evening and laughing to myself again.

today's lesson: remember to rewind (taking note of all the funnies, of all the good, that surrounds you every day.. knowing it's with you.. always).

["we can only be said to be alive in those moments when our hearts are conscious of and thankful for our blessings.."]

Monday, January 17, 2011

in the morning, it will find you.

another passage from the "book.."

"The wine glasses were never used. We never even got them out of the box after moving in together, actually. We never had any wine-drinking company over who would use them and probably say things like, “These wine glasses are to die for!” But they were something we just had to have, according to him, something he planned on having around and using on a later day and at a different time. But, just like so many of his other plans, the wine glasses would never be put to use, let alone put into place.

I later thought to myself, even if his plan had worked out and the wine glasses were finally taken out of their box and used; even if I had faked enjoying wine and had just gone along with it; even if I started saying things like, “This wine is to die for!,” I myself – not to mention everyone else back home – would have known I was taking pretend sips all along."

today's lesson has to do with sticking to what you enjoy, what's you, something i've learned to do again. sweet tea instead of wine. cardigans instead of graphic t-shirts. nights in with good books and music instead of nights out. butterflies instead of mistrusting eyes. january snow instead of a january tan.

the lesson? don't unpack the wine glasses.

["i'm choosing happiness. i know i am. i'm making space for the unknown future to fill up my life with yet-to-come surprises.."]

Sunday, January 16, 2011

and for all you know, this could be.

my friend melissa (mel-steps-a-lot) and i were talking tonight about her recent decision to become a step instructor, about my going back to school, about all the things that our happening, beginning, in our lives right now. things we never expected to be doing and things that seemed scary at first and then.. altogether exciting. we both agreed that knowing that everything always works out the way it's supposed to helps when it comes to taking chances, leaps, and making changes.

over our french fries and sweet teas, mel and i decided today's lesson should be this (inspired by her weekend of step training, i believe).. just do it.

[from eat, pray, love.. "what would i do if you never came here?" but i was always coming here. i was never not coming here. this was never not going to happen..]

Saturday, January 15, 2011

our lives are made in these small hours.

from the "book.."

"The snow of a week ago wasn’t ready just yet to melt, to leave us. Still frozen to the streets in sheets and bundles; still slowly fading away under trees; still draping a few select branches with relentless attention. I wondered what it was waiting on and why it had chosen to stick around. Was it waiting to be met with a bigger snowfall, helping to add to its weathering? Was it simply stuck and hoping to disappear into something else? I had a feeling the snow was waiting, in waiting, for something more, after it had already sneaked its way into our everyday. That was the next step after snowfall - snow stay. After welcoming its early December appearance, we find ourselves growing ever more comfortable having the snow around. It becomes a part of our holiday, sending afternoons into cozy glimmer and creating a nightlight as we sleep. It becomes a part of our conversation, as we wonder if and when we’ll see its addition. It sets the tone for Christmas, I believe, a certain kind of warmth rising off the snow as it hugs the ground. The snow was unexpected, no one knowing just how much it would fall and just how long it would choose to stick around. But, just as soon as it had fallen and made itself known, just as soon as it had weaved its flakes into the most hidden, and sometimes the most secret, of places, the questions disappeared and I knew there would be more to come. I knew there was meant to be something more.."

the lesson for today.. watch for the snow stay.

Friday, January 14, 2011

times have changed. but isn't it strange? lifelines stay the same.

my days always involve family and friends. in many ways. and i'm very thankful for that. today was no different. after a work-out at the gym, i headed over to see my grandparents, to visit and to eat some cake (ha). we caught up on our weeks, enjoying the time together. i spent dinner with my family, as always, sharing stories from our fridays and lots o' laughter. and, now, here i am, talking to a couple friends o' mine and getting ready to watch a movie with the family and the silly puppy. i feel so blessed to have days like this every single day, and i try and be aware of it, in it, as it's happening.

today's lesson is this.. all you need, you have.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

i see a tiny light, like a flashbulb sparkle in the night.

short and sweet.

so, i love my carbs. always have. pasta, rolls, chips. you name it. it didn't hit me until tonight, as i enjoyed my ginormous bowl of frosted flakes, that all this running i've been doing lately helps justify my carb obsession.

today's lesson: there's always a plus.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

once you've had enough, carry on.

so, i was watching "the middle" tonight. brick and sue ended up punching a hole in the wall and spent the episode trying to repair it. at first, the hole got bigger. then, they ended up dropping random things into the hole and behind the wall (a screwdriver, an egg..). and the problem, the challenge, kept getting worse and worse. regardless of the challenges, though, brick and sue continued trying to better the situation. in the end, the screwdriver was retrieved and the egg rolled out from the hole, and the kids found a way to "fix" the hole.

today was the first day running didn't kill me. i was waiting for a day like today, for it to get easier, to get better. i honestly wasn't sure if it would ever happen. but, sure enough, this afternoon, it did (hopefully, it will last). i've been running regularly now for about a month, setting small goals each week. this week's goal was to run five times (two more to go). those small goals help a lot.. to help better the situation.. all the while continuing to "tackle" the challenge.

today's lesson has to do with determination.. wait for the egg.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

this morning, there's a calm i can't explain.

a note to myself (and a lesson i'm still learning): if something doesn’t feel right, trust your gut. i believe it’s important to give everyone and everything a chance (or two or three..), but keep your instincts in mind. more often than not, they are right after all.

i wrote the following a while back, and something about this entry made me think of it..

On one of my favorite television shows, the main character finds herself in love (or what she thought was love) and moves away to Paris with her new special someone who is working in the city for months at a time. She leaves New York, her friends, her family and the only life she has ever known. In some ways throughout the television series, this character becomes synonymous with the Big Apple, and her leaving the city, and those there, seems altogether unnatural.

She arrives in Paris excited and overtaken by the city and its beauty at first. Her boyfriend, however, is busy working (too busy working) and wrapped up in only that which he has going on. Each day, she finds herself lonelier than the day before, walking the streets of Paris alone, thinking of her home and those who are there - secretly thinking, secretly knowing, New York is where she is meant to be.

Back home, her friends and family think of her as well, hoping any day that she will return to them and her life in New York. Soon, these same friends find out they are not the only ones missing her and wishing she would come back home. The character’s lost love soon confesses to her friends how much he too wants her back in his life.

“Go get our girl,” says one of the girlfriends after his heartfelt confession. And, just like that, he is off to Paris.

He finds her in the hotel lobby, after she and her boyfriend have had an argument, as she is trying to find a room for herself and for herself alone. As soon as their eyes meet, she is overcome with tears.

“Paris is a mess,” she cries to him. “I never should’ve come here.”

today's lesson: stick to new york.

Monday, January 10, 2011

spinning on the streets of stars and ride away.

what have i learned today? i know very little about geography.
i'm taking an online geography course through virginia western as part of the undergrad requirements for a master of arts in teaching. the class began today, and after taking the pretest, and a "survey of geographic literacy," i realized i have a lot to learn.

my tenth grade geography course (the first, last and only time i've ever had geography) consisted of coloring in countries on a map. that's about all i remember. i have a feeling, there won't be any coloring in this class. but i also have a feeling i can learn a lot from this course, and since it's a requirement, i figure i might as well get the most out of it.

today's lesson (it's another corny one): shape your world. taking what you're given, what you're blessed with, and getting as much from it as you can.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

find out what you are, face to face.

so, i'm sitting here looking at the information for one of my online courses, trying to get an idea of what i've gotten myself into. being out of school for a little over three years made me wonder how i'd feel about going back, and how it would all go. i mean, i'm so old now (just kidding). but, as i look through the course orientation and the assignments and the syllabus, i almost feel like i've been in school all along, without any break in between. weird. was not expecting that. and, yes, i'm kind of a nerd for filling out my planner and checking things off my to-do list. i enjoy that kind of stuff. and, now, with classes officially starting tomorrow, i'm even more excited for what's ahead.

the lesson today? fly your nerd flag.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

and i could tell what form my dreaming was about to take.

today's lesson is short and sweet (mostly because i want to catch up on "the bachelor" now).. with words, write.

the "book" is starting to really come along. for a few months this past fall, i couldn't think of anything to write. i hardly wrote at all. come december, though, i caught the writing bug again and since then, have kind of been on a roll. the best writing days are those when you don't even really have to think too much.. you can just write and write. today was one of those days.

the lesson isn't as literal as it sounds. yes, obviously you write with words. but what i mean more than anything is when the words come, especially when they come without thought, write.

okay, "the bachelor" is calling, and i love my reality tv.

["it is necessary to write, if the days are not to slip emptily by. how else, indeed, to clap the net over the butterfly of the moment? for the moment passes, it is forgotten; the mood is gone; life itself is gone. that is where the writer scores over his fellows: he catches the changes of his mind on the hop.."]

Friday, January 7, 2011

on the way, so it seems. blooming flowers waltz before me.

i was standing in line at the bookstore today, getting ready to buy a couple books for the semester, and finding it a little hard to believe i'm going back to school. i had already been through school for nursing and had gotten comfortable with being a nurse. something needed to change, though, and the idea of teaching came to mind. sure, i've had thoughts like.. what am i doing?, and can i do this again? but, mostly, the thoughts that cross my mind go something like this.. i'm excited for grad school, for more school, and i'm excited to try something new.

there are several albums on my ipod i hardly even listened to. i downloaded them because different friends suggested doing so, but a lot of the time, i chose to stick with the bands and the songs i've known for years. last year seemed to be a year for finding and getting into new music.. more so than any other year before. that new music became the music i started listening to just as often as my classics. but, still, i left a few songs unlistened to. today, though, on the way to the bookstore, i began listening to atreyu, a band i kept putting off, with thoughts of the relay marathon in april in mind. my thinking? they are perfect for running to, perfect for making you want to run fast. all i had to do was give it a try.. another something new.

so, the lesson for january 7th is this.. jump in.

["leap and the net will appear.."]

Thursday, January 6, 2011

why won't you run in the rain and play?

so, the treadmill and i had a good evening together wednesday night. i love walking and listening to music. i think i could do it all day long. running, however, is taking some getting used to. i have a bad habit of keeping my eyes on the treadmill display.. watching as i get closer to a mile and two miles.. watching as the timer ticks down.

last night, though, i tried to keep my head up instead.. watching the eight different tvs in front of me and the few people in the gym. the running seemed to go faster, and i was able to get back to what i love.. walking.. in no time. instead of letting the challenge of running get the best of me, and the treadmill display that likes to taunt me, i chose to "grin and bear it" (okay, i wasn't exactly smiling but still).

today, tonight in particular, i chose to do the same. different situation, same lesson in mind. not letting a certain challenge get the best of me.

the lesson? look up.

["our hearts are strong..]

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

light swimming right across your face.

i tried a new recipe tonight. apple turkey burgers. yes, apple. along with green onion, ground turkey and some different seasonings. and a special sauce made up of ketchup, chili sauce and apple jelly heated over the stove. sounds weird, right? they were surprisingly tasty.

even though i've been going to the gym fairly regularly for the past year and a half, i haven't always done so well with eating well. recently, i decided i wanted to try and start eating better, too. after all, you can only have so many chicken nuggets and pizza bites.. although, they are both delightful.. before feeling like you need a change.

so, this week, the grocery cart was full of good stuff. granola. yogurt. vegetables. chicken. pasta with enough protein in every serving to turn me into a body builder by the end of january (just kidding). and, i don't know if it's the additional work outs i've been doing lately (even if the running is about to kill me), or the healthier food (it can be good), or maybe it's the combination, but i just feel better. not that i wasn't feeling well before. it's just a little different now. doing good things, eating good things and feeling good because of it. a lightness inside and out.

today's lesson, then, is this.. put thought in, get light out.

["take time to realize.."]

a recipe to share. apple turkey burgers (ours were grilled, not broiled)

Crisco® Original No-Stick Cooking Spray
3/4 pound ground turkey
1/2 cup peeled, shredded apple
2 green onions, thinly sliced
3/4 teaspoon lemon pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon apple pie spice
1/4 cup bottled chili sauce
2 tablespoons ketchup
1/4 cup Apple Jelly
4 whole wheat hamburger buns, toasted, if desired
Lettuce leaves (optional)
1. HEAT broiler. Spray broiler pan with no-stick cooking spray.
2. COMBINE turkey, apple, green onions, lemon pepper, salt and apple pie spice in large bowl. Shape into 4 patties about 1/2-inch thick.
3. COMBINE chili sauce, ketchup and apple jelly in small saucepan. Heat over medium heat, stirring occasionally while patties cook. Cool slightly.
4. BROIL turkey patties about 6 inches from heat for 6 to 8 minutes per side or until no longer pink in center.
5. PLACE lettuce and burgers on bottom halves of buns. Top each with 2 tablespoons sauce. Cover with bun tops. Serve immediately.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

not far, but near, i stood and saw it all.

my friend melissa and i were standing outside the gym tonight after our work-out, enjoying another round of parking lot girl chat. for whatever reason, we seem to have the best conversations, and end up giving and getting the best advice, in the parking lot at the gym.. even if it's freezing and i can't feel my face afterward.

i was telling mel my plans for the night, which included staying in and making a chicken pasta dish for dinner. as we said goodnight, she yelled, "enjoy your noodles!," and after i had stopped laughing, i got to thinking about the phrase itself.

i'm a homebody who enjoys staying in and watching reality tv, having laughter-filled dinners with my family and friends and sharing in the silliest, but also the most heartfelt, conversations with them. it's those simple things in life (that are anything but simple), just like a big plate of pasta after a trip to the gym, that i love the most.

so, today's lesson is this - enjoy your noodles.

Monday, January 3, 2011

but this time not for you just for me.

today's lesson is going to take some time to get used, i think.

sometimes, sticking to what you want and believe means you've got to let go of whatever it is that is trying to pull you in the other direction.

i've found, the more i do what i truly want, the more i stick to the real me, the happier i am. for a while, i thought, if i did what others wanted, and they were happy, i'd be happy myself. it worked, too, but only for so long. nowadays, i'm no longer scared to speak up, to speak for myself. it's interesting to me, though, to see what happens and who sticks around when i listen to me instead.

["i used to think someday i'd relax a little and be more like you. then, i realized how silly that thought was. i needed to stand in my own shoes."]

Sunday, January 2, 2011

i can't stay in the middle of it all.

i spent a good amount of time today with the treadmill (my new best friend), walking and running and trying to convince myself i enjoy running. the weird part is, i don't completely hate it anymore, but it's still a challenge for me. i'm learning, though, if i can concentrate on my breathing or the music i'm listening to, and get my mind off the actual running, things go much, much better. the key is keeping my focus, which is hard for me to do - a million different thoughts seem to be on my mind at any given time. today's lesson, then, on this second day in january, is simple - distraction works. if you can concentrate on the good, the not-so-good begins to either disappear or get better.

["i was doing something i'd never done before. and what will i be able to do tomorrow that i cannot yet do today?]

Saturday, January 1, 2011

in the end, we will only just remember how it feels.

a lesson a day. every day of 2011. a new idea to carry through the year.

today's lesson? there are millions of blessings all around me every day.

i was sitting and visiting with my family, my aunt and uncle this afternoon, hearing stories of how important it was to them to take care of family, without thinking, without asking anything in return. whether it be through money or advice or help with laundry or with tuition. i listened as my parents and my aunt and uncle all said the same thing - they'd do anything for my brother and me and their girls (as they always have). i got a little teary-eyed sitting there today, thinking of how blessed i've always been to have the kind of support i do.

my best girlfriends and i went to dinner tonight to exchange christmas gifts (we're always a little behind) and catch up (even though we talk every day). we shared our meal, silly stories and hours of laughter, along with our plans for the new year that all require a great deal of support from each other. i had the same thought again, knowing that support would be there, just as it always has been - i'm so, so blessed.

it is a wonderful way to start the new year, visiting with family and friends and laughing until my face and stomach both hurt. and it's a wonderful feeling to know i don't have to look far (i don't really have to look at all) to see and to know the blessings all around me.

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