Friday, December 30, 2016

What I've Learned About Resolutions

Today is a day just like any other.  Tomorrow will be a new day.  The day after is a brand new day. The day after that is a brand new day, too.  Are you sensing a pattern?  

It is almost a new year.  It feels like we should be starting over, setting resolutions and writing down goals.  And you should...if you do that in April or July, or another part of the year.  You should write new goals...if you've already learned that your goals are only as good as the habits already developed.  The daily habits that you set in motion way before January 1st are what will make resolutions stick.  

So enjoy this new day.  Enjoy tomorrow, too. Have a beautiful 2017.  Admit that a new day will not automatically get you to your goal...your established, productive habits will get you to your new goal.

Make it a beautiful day, friends.

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Monday, December 26, 2016

Who is Rooting for Your Marriage?

Alone together.  That's how I heard one person describe our culture of social media.  We sit alone on our couch looking at other peoples' posts on social media.  The posts are the highlight reel.  It's not that they are bad things we's just not all the things.

I don't believe we should air our "dirty laundry" on social media.  We've all seen the posts that are vague and specifically angry. Um.  Be a grown up and go talk to that person.  Don't post it on facebook.  But that's not where I'm going today. I found out last weekend that a couple I thought I knew is getting divorced.  Apparently, I wasn't the only one surprised by this announcement. Someone else commented that they had no idea the couple was having trouble.  

"They didn't want to air their dirty laundry," was the reply.

While I don't think it's everyone's business if someone is having trouble in their marriage, it's my hope and prayer that you have someone in your life that you can talk to and have that real conversation:

"I'm having a really hard time in my marriage right now with ___." Fill in the blank.  Anything, on any given day can be really hard when you are married.

I have a wonderful husband, but there are still times that I want to choke him with my bare hands.  At that point, I need a real friend to tell me that they are rooting for my marriage...not what a jerk my husband is and that I should leave him.  Divorce is not easier, friends.  That is the lie the world tries to tell you.  That is the lie Satan whispers in your ear.  Marriage is not always sunshine and roses.  It's work...and it's a choice.

 colors: UL sugared plum & lilac bouquet

If you are the one struggling, please reach out to someone.  There are so many resources available. You are not alone.  If you don't know anyone you think will be on the side of your marriage, please message me.  I will pray for you. (Here is one resource you can look into.) If you are in a real physically or emotionally abusive relationship, that is another matter entirely.  You need help, too, and know that is not okay.  Please, get outside help.

We all want our happily ever after.  Sometimes we need to roll up our sleeves and work for it.

Make it a beautiful day, friends.

I'm sad for the heavy topic today.  This has been weighing on my heart.  After you get done pondering the current state of your relationship, visit me on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook for some light hearted decorating fun.  If you are looking for some color change up in your home or business, stop by for ideas and consult information.  Thanks for sharing.  You don't know who might need to read this today.

Friday, December 23, 2016

Mountain Lions and Ninjas

I hang around funny people.  Life is more fun that way.  Two of these maybe-a-bit-competitive gentlemen may have an ongoing competition/hypothetical discussion about whether or not they could kill a mountain lion before it kills them.  Fortunately, this is only a hypothetical discussion and not a retelling of a real life, horrific situation.  This discussion has been going on for years, apparently, but now it's shifted...

A couple weeks ago, one of these pranksters approached me at the gym and told me that even with my black belt, he felt he could take me.  He could take me down before I could kill him.  I'll be honest, at first my feelings were a little offended.  Sure he may have 50 pounds on me, but I have some skills and some knowledge that should give me the advantage.  (I hope that studying karate for 8 years has taught me a little more than just how to punch or kick!) While I wouldn't say I'm super aggressive, I do feel like I could hold my own if there were to be a random "mountain lion" situation.

 color: UL cotton candy

The funny thing is that I didn't know about this particular discussion before the throw down was issued at the gym.  I thought my friend was being the sarcastic, sometimes filter-less, often outspoken, albeit hilarious person that he is.  But the more I got to thinking about this weird challenge to my hard earned skill set, I realized they were comparing me to a mountain lion.  (If you live in Colorado, you know that if you encounter a mountain lion in the wild, it's probably too late for you.  Sorry.)  What I'm saying is this: it's kind of an honor to have grown men wondering if they can kill me before I kill honor in a weird, twisted kind of way, I know, but I'll take it.

What strange compliments have you received today?

Make it a beautiful day, friends.

When you're done contemplating what kind of strange people would come up with such a discussion in the first place, pop over to Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook for some inspiration that's a little more tame.  You can also subscribe to this blog simply by entering your email in the box below.

Monday, December 19, 2016

What Did You Ask for 10 Years Ago?

At my gathering of friends for my birthday-ness, one of my friends asked me about the highlights of the last decade. I'm sometimes hesitant to pull up to the bragtable, but I do believe it's good to reflect and see how far we've come, on occasion.  

My list accomplishments that I'm proud of could go on, but it wasn't until a week after my party that one of my friends pointed out something else that I have accomplished in the last decade: friendships. This particular friend, I have known since I was about 12. She reminded me of a conversation we had about 10 years ago. I was a stay at home mom and we had just moved back to the area and I was looking for relationship with depth and accountability and honesty. I had a few friendships that were close-ish, but I was desiring the next level in friendship and spiritual growth.

 Colors: UL shoreline blue & matte black

Through a series of circumstances, we ended up with a small group Bible study...that we're still a part of. Some of the faces have changed and there are some newer ones I've also grown to love, but these are my core people. We've even split a couple times because we were too large, but I still love all of  the people. They are the ones that tell me when I'm having unreasonable expectations of myself. They're the ones that will stop what they're doing to pray with me. They're the ones who bring me a coffee and a hug just because.  Ten years later, I'm glad we made the choice to find our people.

I know without a doubt that God brought each of these people into our life. He knew exactly what I needed to stretch, grow, challenge, and encourage me. That safe place to be vulnerable and honest has made me better at other relationships, too. My point is that it was a choice to put ourselves out there.  It was a choice to be vulnerable and willing to develop relationships...and I'm so thankful we did.

Make it a beautiful day, friends.

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Friday, December 16, 2016

Rootin', Tootin' Flutin'

I played the flute all through school.  I won't say that I was exceptional, but I was good and more than anything, I enjoyed it.  

Last year, being the musical creature God made her to be, my daughter started to play flute, too. She was good, and, of course, a natural. Long fingers, great rhythm, and an amazing ear for all things musical, it was no surprise when she quickly picked it up.  Tonight, I was so proud to witness the legacy continuing.

It's the time of year for winter recitals, so away we went to watch our girl do her thing. Of course, every parent was proud of their child. They all did well. But I was especially proud to see how confident she was as she played in a duet and a solo that she volunteered for.  Volunteered. My baby girl who likes to think she's shy, but then has these glimpses of sparkle that break out every now and then.  It's really beautiful! She's amazing!

 color: UL Italian Turquoise

I appreciate your letting me brag on my kiddo for a moment, but I want you to understand something else about this little recital: she wasn't amazing just because she practiced. She was amazing because the music was in her and she couldn't help but let it out. She is living in and expressing her gifting. What kind of glow do you have when you're living in your purpose? What's in you?  Who were you created to be? 

Make it a beautiful day, friends.

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Monday, December 12, 2016

Planning for Help

I have a lot on my plate.  I think I always will, or at least for a good while.  It's just the season I'm in.  

I'm fairly organized, at least as far as my calendar goes, but I believe I can do better.  I do manage to get my family fed on a regular basis--just kidding. They have food available every day, and usually there is some semblance of a meal (thank you, emeals!).  That part of my schedule feels like it works most of the time. Where I run into trouble is my to do list...I don't think I'll ever get done with it.

I was discussing this issue with my coach last week and we decided I need to add some priorities to my scheduling, as well as changing the format a bit.  I know there are a TON of different planning and/or calendar systems out there.  I'm currently using Google calendar, which I really like in a lot of ways, but it has some short comings.  Here's where you come in: I'd love to know what calendar/planning systems you use. My qualifications are that it has to be portable and intuitive.  I don't want a wall size calendar to carry around with me all the time, or something so complicated that I can't use it well.

 colors: UL bright white & crimson red

I don't usually ask for much feedback in this blog space, but I'd really live to hear what you know on this one.

Make it a beautiful day, friends.

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Friday, December 9, 2016

Looking Back to Move Forward

Then I had a client ask me this question last week,

"Did you always know you would do something with artistic design?" I believe I just took me a while to get there.

There were little snippets of my future sprinkled in my past...smoldering twigs, if you will.  I took art classes during a lot of kids do.  Coloring, painting, drawing.  I always liked to do that stuff.  At age 10, I started taking painting lessons.  Apparently, my parents saw something in me that I thought was just something people did, but they saw as more exceptional.  I'm not saying I was a phenom.  I wasn't.  But it was something I was fairly good at and that I could develop.

 color: UL mulberry wine

Along the way I have developed many skills and many more are still in the growth process, and hopefully will never leave that stage.  I love learning.  That is part of who I am.

What have you always known you would do?  What can you grow into a marketable skill?  What can you grow simply for the joy of learning?

Make it a beautiful day, friends.

Find me on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.  You'll see some snippets of some of the things I'm having fun creating.  I've also added new posts and updates at, so stop by and see.

Monday, December 5, 2016

Happy Birthday to Me

I'm turning 40 this week.  I didn't think I'd be so contemplative about it.  I have several beautiful, amazing friends that are a few years ahead of me...and they make it look good so I'm not too worried. Nevertheless, conversations keep popping up in my mind.

      -Do you realize you're halfway through your life?  What have you done?  You'd better get started!

     -Do you realize you're halfway through your life?  What have you done?  You're too late.  You might as well lay down and quit.

They may not happen simultaneously, but both those conversations happen in my head.  Yes, I realize the dichotomy.  It happens.

Thirty-eight (as in, last year) was a exceptional year for me. I earned my black belt in karate.  I was offered and accepted (and completed!) a project in my business that was bigger than I had ever done before.  I learned some of what I was capable of.  

In the time since I've completed those bigger milestones, I haven't had other "huge" successes.  I didn't have the huge explosion I thought I might after I finished my big project. I have had some firecracker moments, though. Our karate school is growing and we've implemented some new programming I'm really excited about.

 color: UL lucky green
Cute up your birthday reminders with this adorable birthday board.
Just hang a mini card from each month with the birth date & name on it.

I've had some bummer moments, too.  I injured my foot and couldn't participate in my regular CrossFit routine for 3 months...causing me to slow down a little and gain a little weight.  Ugh.  My son fractured his leg in his first season of football.  I've had a slower season in my creative business.

But I'm not done yet and there are new adventures on the horizon.  I still feel like I'm just getting started. Maybe I'll always feel like I'm just getting started, and that's a good thing. It means there's room for expansion.  It means things are exciting and fresh.  It means I'm growing...even though I'm almost  40.  What new dreams do you have today?

Make it a beautiful day, friends.

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Friday, December 2, 2016

Little Man

"I might not have responded like I know I should have." That's what my 14-year-old son said when he called me to tell me he and his sister were fighting. He had the self-realization to know he was angry and that even though his sister was pushing his buttons, he knew he needed to not lose his cool completely.

 colors: UL valencia orange & hot cocoa

It was one of those rare moments when I wanted to congratulate myself for being a great mom...then I realized it was more a reflection of the amazing man he is becoming despite my best efforts.  I have great kids. They aren't perfect, but they are terrific.  It's easy to get down on yourself when one of your offspring makes a choice contrary to what you believe you taught them.  

I often try to remember that I didn't birth little robots. They have ideas and dispositions that are all their own.  I'm comforted by the thought that God gave Adam and Eve a perfect world, environment, and an actual perfect parent--and they still screwed it up. I'm not throwing in the towel, and, just like my Heavenly Father, I will always love  my stubborn, feisty, smart-alecky, silly kids. 

Make it a beautiful day, friends.

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