Posted in Ballet, family and home, HD Beauty, Lifestyle, Travel Log

Seeing Sugarplums in the City: A Girls Trip to San Francisco

For Christmas, Maizy and I took an overnight trip to San Francisco to go with her ballet school (and mom’s) to see the San Francisco Ballet and a performance of the Nutcracker. It was a magical overnight stay at the Royal Sonesta Hotel right in Union Square. The tree was still up, the macaroons were still available, and the Opera Hall was simply stunning. It was a Passport performance, meaning our young dancers in training received an activity “passport” and were encouraged to explore the venue through a series of stations such as: a historical overview of the Nutcracker, a close look at point shoes and my favorite…locally made, organic marshmallows (only in CA right?). We Uber’d our way through the city, had homemade Rootbeer, and ate giant cast iron skillets of mac n’ cheese (with bacon of course).

The next morning we lounged in the hotel and ordered room service. The room was designed to mimic a California sunset, which led to a beautiful progression of color as it became light in the morning and only enhanced our relaxation in the morning.

It was a leisurely 24 hours in the city. Maizy and I relished every moment of our down time where we got to bring our comfy socks, see an amazing ballet, and spend some quality mother-daughter time.

Posted in Lifestyle, Motivation, Self Care, Why, Year of Self Love

Week 15: Year of Self Love-Learn to say No

Let me be honest, when I saw this week on my list at the beginning of the year I dreaded it. I struggle with saying, “No.” And when I say struggle, I mean S-T-R-U-G-G-L-E. I think it has to do with my upbringing. Now, don’t get me wrong, my upbringing was fine. No major trauma. I don’t feel like I have one of those stories where I’m working though the trauma of my past.

However, I was brought up to be a pleaser.

There was really no way around it. I’m the oldest of 4 children AND the only girl. My childhood memories all revolve around caring for my brothers, helping with the family business, and striving for perfection in my academics, my athletics, my music, and my activities. Add to that a conservative christian upbringing where it was frowned upon for women to rock the boat and say “no” to obligations charged to them by their husbands, family, or God and you have a recipe for a disaster on your hands.

Even today, knowing that “no” is a difficult concept for me, I still struggle with it, but in a different way. Typically those opportunities to say “no” aren’t in relation to unhealthy choices (for the most part); my life is a carousel inundated with fun and engaging choices. As an adult, Jason and I often have extended family in crises who need us, to the detriment of the attention of my little family nucleus. I have a demanding day job where it is often seen as a weakness to say “no” to additional or extra working opportunities provided by management. However, that takes me away from my family, as well as those activities that bring me joy. My part-time business can literally be worked anywhere at anytime and for that reason I am always feeling guilty when I’m not working, or, in the alternative pushing to keep myself active to the detriment of myself. We have an active friend group and with so much fun going on all the time, it feels impossible to say “no” to any of the activities and plans being made.

You see what I mean. These aren’t bad things.

It’s just that sometimes, the myriad of choices don’t support who it is I want to be as a person.

Over the weekend, I listened to a Podcast from Super Soul Sunday (thank you mother Oprah) that hit on this topic so resoundingly that I have listened to it three times now. “Iyanla Vanzant: You Matter”was one of those Aaah Haa moments that I haven’t had in a long time. Here is the basic premise for me:

Developing the ability to say “no” is the only way you are going to discover what you are meant to be.

How you ask?

Because when you stand firm in you “no,” you open space up to live in your “yes.”

Think about that for a minute. By saying “no” to the things that don’t honor, that don’t support, and don’t sustain who you were meant to be you can’t make room for those things that are really important to you. I am SO guilty of this. I feel frustration all the time because I don’t have time for those things that I find most important. In reality, it’s my own damn fault.

Yeah, I said it, It’s my own damn fault.

By worrying about others, by being a pleaser, I have over-committed myself in detrimental ways. I haven’t made space to live in my yes.

So this week, let’s flex that “no” muscle a little bit. We can all make space to live in our “yes’s” and really, that is what is most important.

Additional Resources

Make sure to check out Iyanla Vanzant: You Matter. Available on iTunes. Here is a video link to her full “You Matter” sermon. (Oh and if you don’t think it’s a sermon, watch the whole thing….It will have you saying “AMEN” by the end)

https://youtu.be/fXCXyz8sZPg

Fair Warning: I am an Amazon Affiliate. But here is a link to one of my favorite books right now. Girl, Wash Your Face, by Rachel Hollis.

Her chapter on about the word “NO” is about as life-changing as can be…if you are open to it. 🙂

Posted in Course Notes, family and home, grit and glitter, Lifestyle, Motivation, Why

Course Notes: The Jourse (Week 1)

You can’t know who you are without knowing what you need.

Katie L. Wood

Katie L. Wood is one of my favorite trainers. She recently branched out of the business world and developed a series of training’s designed for specifically for women and their personal development. Her terminology of “Jourse,” which I can’t say without trying to sound like a white female rapper (and not a good one), is based on the premise that you must figure out what you need before you can discover who you are. The Jourse wants you to learn that sometimes we get caught of living our life backwards-we try to have more in order to do what we want. However, the opposite is true:

You must first be WHO you are and do what you NEED to do, in order to have WHAT YOU WANT.

Katie L. Wood

Perhaps the biggest takeaway I had from this first week in the Jourse is this concept of having 4 primary buckets we need to fill in our lives. If we don’t focus on filling the buckets it will lead to self-destruction. As women we tend to pour everything we have out of these buckets for the benefit of others and never take time to replenish them.

So what are those buckets?

  1. Physical-What are you doing to keep your body healthy and strong?
  2. Mental-Do you flex your mind, learn, and continue to grow?
  3. Soul-How do you honor the higher power your recognize in your daily existence?
  4. Relationship-Are you showing up meaningfully to those people that matter?

What are you doing to fill these buckets? I mean, really think about it. Are there one or more of these categories that are completely lacking in attention?

For me, I’ve done a pretty good job filling buckets one and two; however, buckets there and four have been getting neglected in a pretty major way. And you know what? I’ve felt it. I have physically and mentally felt a drain of energy, motivation, and focus in my life. I can’t even count how many times over the last several months I have said to my husband, “I’m drained,” “I’m spent,” or “I can’t put myself out there anymore.” My buckets are empty and need to be filled.

So this last week has been one of rejuvenation and reflection for me. How do I focus on my soul and my relationships? That, my friends, resulted in a pretty fabulous weekend with the family: quality time with the kids, date night with the husband, and Super Soul Sunday with Oprah. I mean really who else do you turn to when you Soul Bucket needs a refill?

The Jourse, Week 1, was a success in my book. Looking forward to the journey this course takes me on.

Posted in family and home, grit and glitter, Lifestyle, Motivation

Adventure Time!

Welcome and thanks in advance for joining me here as I begin a brand new adventure!  Carving out a space to put pen to paper (so to speak) has been a life-long goal; one that has scared me more than just about anything else.  I’ve been meaning to to this for a long time but have found excuse after excuse as to why I shouldn’t, couldn’t, or wouldn’t.

2019 is different.

I’m hoping this will be a place where I can share my adventures and that others might find value…or at least be a little entertained in the madness that can be my life.  And let me tell you having been married for 20 years with a 15 years old, a 9 year old and 2 demanding careers (one glittery and one gritty…more on that later) feels like nothing but pure madness most of the time.  We travel, we work, we play hard and through the good and the bad we are learning to see it all as just a big adventure.  I’d say I’m hopeless in my devotion towards a well lived, beautiful life.

But back to why 2019 is different.

I recently got my hands on the book The War of Art by Steven Pressfield.  It was one of those books that I highlighted, dog-eared, and reread.  It described me to a tee, or rather my inaction to a tee.  I resisted.

Even with that knowledge, I have resisted. Resisted my way right into April 2019. As Pressfield says so succinctly, “To yield to resistance, deforms our spirit. It stunts us and makes us less than we are and were born to be.”

So…welcome to my space where I will fight resistance and share about those things that I am hopeless devoted to. Hopefully you will share in my journey and help me along my way.

Nashville in October 2018. I kid you not, I read The War of Art on the plane out to Nashville and I have been “resisting” ever since.