Happy Surprises & Big Girl Panties

Sometimes I learn really huge lessons that I desperately want to remember. I tend to quickly forget (don’t we all?), so I’m resorting to print. Some of these are very obvious…but tonight I want to remember that:

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~happy surprises can (and do) drop out of the sky.

~we must tune out the naysayers. surround yourself with supportive cheerleaders. go where you feel moved, where something “pings” inside. follow the spark, always.

~nothing is permanent.

~when it rains, it pours. (really, really try to remember this in the midst of a frustrating standstill, an agonizing drought.)

~often, the only thing to stop the stories, the ruminating, the festering, the dis-ease—is hoisting up one’s big girl panties, opening up lines of communication & practicing bravery and kindness rolled into one.

~we never ever know the whole story (and often, when we learn at least some of it, we soften.) everyone is human, and we are all just doing the best we can.

It’s been a mostly good (busy) couple weeks here in the (sunny!) PNW, but tomorrow I’m heading east to my people on that (snowy!) coast, and I couldn’t be happier. Hope your weeks have been filled with some happy surprises and refreshing revelations, too.

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*winter*

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“Our lives are at once ordinary and mythical. … At the same instant we have these magnificent hearts that pump through all sorrow and all winters we are alive on the earth.”~Natalie Goldberg

(On that note, is it spring yet? Ready.)

*Song on repeat over here.

New Year Goodness

Dawn of a New Year

Dawn of a New Year

Usually, even when it shouldn’t, New Year’s Eve carries with it a lot of pressure, a lot of build-up, a lot of expectations. (I know I am not alone in feeling this way.) It feels like a stressful deadline to have fully processed the year that’s about to come to a close and to have neatly laid out all of one’s goals and intentions for the year to come.

Sometimes, I honestly feel relief when it’s over. For me, everything on this holiday feels a bit too crowded, a bit too sloppy, a bit too forced. (Next year, I repeat, all I crave is a cozy fireside dinner party with all my nearest and dearest in a remote cabin in the woods. Oh, and snow falling softly outside our window and a late-night acoustic jam by the flickering flames would be great, too, thanks:))

Party @ a home

Party @ a home

Party @ a bar

Party @ a bar

My NYE was fine, filled with moments that were good, but when the first morning of 2014 arrived, I also sighed a huge sigh of relief. My January 1st, in contrast, was FANTASTIC. One of my Seattle BFFs, who happens to live about three blocks from me, invited me over for a day of total vegging, and I loved it. She cooked (health-conscious but delicious food), we watched movies, we sipped some wine, we rehashed the night before and looked forward to the year ahead. We allowed ourselves that rare chance to be total yoga pants-wearing-sloths for an entire day without feeling one iota of guilt. It was divine.

The simple day reminded me of a few wishes I hope to hold close for the year ahead. Drop the “shoulds.” Do what feels good. Indulge. Maintain moderation. Surround yourself with those with whom it’s zero effort, who get you, who listen, who build you up,  who make you laugh. Be present. Appreciate the now.

Laugh easily. Dream hopefully. Trust steadfastly. Allow joy. Live with ease. Be grateful for it all.

New Year's Day bliss: zucchini-shiitake bruschetta, a wee bit of vino and Sweet Home Alabama on the tube

New Year’s Day bliss: zucchini-shiitake bruschetta, a wee bit of vino and Sweet Home Alabama on the tube

Happy New Year, friends.

Words & Tunes

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[Seeing these guys Thursday:)]

Happy Monday!

Hope smiles

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“Hope smiles from the threshold of the year to come / Whispering ‘It will be happier.'”~Alfred, Lord Tennyson