Monday, November 26, 2012

Monday Motivation

Our holiday weekend was filled with wonderful family and friends. Having our first holiday in our new home was amazing. (Not to mention delicious! I'm still full from all the food!) Tom and I also got some extra time over this holiday weekend to finish moving in to our house and get some things situated. I can't tell you how grateful I am for the extra time off work, for family, for good food, and for new couches! So many people made this weekend special for me and I am lucky to have so many lovely folks in my life!  Today we will all head back to our normal routines but while thanksgiving may be over let's not forget to keep being grateful! 

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Overwhelming Gratitude

It’s been a super light week here on the blog due to the move but I promise we’ll get back to our regular schedule soon! Here is a quick Grati-Vember update in the mean time.

Tom and I are moved into our house and I can’t begin to tell you the amount of ooey gooey love-y great-fullness I feel. This thanksgiving season, I am overwhelmed with gratitude. I’m not a big cryer but I was very close to happy tears this past weekend. The move couldn’t have been better. There is just no way to fully thank all the wonderful family and friends who stopped by to help us. They are all such blessings!

Tom and I are both having a love affair with our house. We’re getting to know it and make friends. It has quirks, new sounds, a different key for every door, and I love every bit of it!  The cats are running from window to window all day. It’s just unbelievable that its ours and as a bonus, we get to be close to so many folks that we love.

I have heard about bright faith but this weekend and this last year in general has proven it to me. You have to believe in your dreams. You have to keep getting clear on what you want and have faith that at the right time things will work out. When it does, and its even more amazing than you imagined, you too will be over whelmed by gratitude and the meaning of bright faith. 

I want to share this feeling of intense love, gratitude, and overwhelming joy with everyone. So this is me sending you all the good vibes I have and wishing you all the most amazing Thanksgiving week!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

The Art of the Surprise

There are so many ways to add gratitude to your life but one that I think is less often thought about is showing someone how much you appreciate them. I love surprises and I love surprising the folks I love. Today I thought I'd share some of my favorite ways to surprise others.

1) The hidden note
  This one started when I was little. I loved my grandparents and when they would watch me, I would go about their house and hide little notes. They would have a smiley face or an "I love you" on them in my little kid handwriting. I'd hide them in coat pockets, drawers, books, behind cushions, under plates... anywhere I thought they would find them. My grandma kept these note and gave some of them to me a few years ago. I still smile at the thought.
  I've been a note writer ever since. Tom gets notes in his work shirts, hidden behind his train pass, under his pillow when I'm going to be out of town. Anywhere I think he will find them, even if its not for a few weeks! He leaves me notes now too! I can't tell you how much I love each one.
  If you want to try this grab a post it note, put a smiley face on it or write a little something special. Then think of some place to hide it that the person your hiding it for goes every day. I've even hidden notes in the shower! Get crafty with it! If you go by your significant others car in the morning stick one on the seat or under the wiper! See what fun places you can find to hide them! (you might just find one for yourself!)

2) Snail mail
 I love, love fun stationary! One of my favorite ways to surprise friends who live a bit farther from me is sending fun cards. We get so much junk mail and bills every day, who doesn't love finding a card from a friend! Email may be faster but wouldn't you love to come home from work to a card that says "hey, just thinking of you".

3) The always popular Flowers
 This one is not only for guys to send girls. I send my mom flowers All. The. Time. (If my dad liked flowers, I'd send him some too!) I send them to friends, to anyone I think would like them. Now here is the thing with this, the Internet makes this way easier! I don't go to the expensive "send flowers anywhere" places. I go local BUT I don't always live local. So for example, say your mom/best friend/ sister lives in another state. Ask them for their work address (or if you can ask someone who knows their work address with out directly asking them, even better for the surprise factor!) Then google local flower shops in that area. Find one that delivers where you can order online and BOOM! Your mom/ best friend/girlfriend/grandma won't know what hit her and will be delighted to be appreciated!
    Bonus: Find out what the person's favorite flower is and take it up a notch!
Double Bonus: Please note most if not all girls LOVE getting flowers AT WORK. (Yea, we like to show off a little and it makes any day better when you have flowers to look at!) Please also note you will get major bonus points for flowers that arrive on a Non-holiday. Don't get me wrong we still want them on holidays (sorry charlie) but the Non-holiday flower says "I love and appreciate you just because your in my life."

4) Tasty Tasty Treats
Okay so girls like flowers but what about the guys? Well here is one that works for everyone. One of my favorite treats to send is cupcakes! Generally I use Crumbs cupcakes because I love the design of the site but there are a ton! All of them deliver!
They have themed cupcake sets! Beware you may start drooling on your computer!
Come on chocolate covered strawberries!
This is Tom recommended! If you want to surprise your guy I'm just sayin' this would be it. Hit the link and go order online, then Bar-B-Que. Beware: he may drop down and ask you to marry him for this.

There is no link for this but the last one is Pizza. I have a friend who ordered her husband a pizza while she was on a business trip, in another state! Come on who doesn't love that!

Send someone some love today! Let them know your grateful you are to have them in your life!
You get what you give folks, go give some smiles!

*The awesome snail mail in the photo above is from a very cute little girl named Liliana and her momma. The flowers were from Tom!

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Let It Breathe

Like a fine wine, letting things in life breathe, can make the flavor that much sweeter. This concept has always been hard for me to follow. I want instant results, instant change, instant resolution. That last one is a biggie for me. I can’t handle un-resolved things. They eat at me and I start obsessively thinking about them. If I’ve had a disagreement with someone and we don’t come to a resolution right there, I will stew on it every moment until we do. I’m a compulsive problem solver (half of my job as a designer is to solve graphic problems) so when I can’t find a solution or  “make” one happen fast enough, I stress over it to distraction. This past month and week in particular has brought this concept to the forefront of my consciousness.  (Thank you universe, I hear you, ps mercury retrograde, I hear you too) 

In a little less than a week Tom and I will be moving into our very first house! ( I may have mentioned a few times, can you tell I’m super excited?!) I’m also more than a little stressed about it. Normal closing on a house is 3 months. The folks selling the house we are buying needed to settle in 1 month. (holy cow) This is awesome in that we now get to spend the holidays in our beautiful new home but is a lot to accomplish in a very short time. If you have ever bought a house or are in the process you know that its a LOT of info gathering and feeling like your giving money to everyone. For us, we also have to find a suitable tenant to rent the townhouse we are living in currently so that our landlord will let us out of our lease. Add on getting movers, packing everything, and still doing all the things you have to do in your daily life, all in a one month time frame... well.. you can see why it’s a little crazy over here. 

I found myself having a little mental breakdown at work the other day. I was trying to do my job and thinking about all the things we had to do outside of work. (obviously this is super productive) I was worrying over an over about getting a tenant in by december. What if no one responded to our ad? What if we had to pay rent and mortgage until march? What would we do? Then the movers, what if we couldn’t find someone on short notice? Then I started thinking about insurance and all that goes into that... I had worked myself into an anxiety attack complete with a trip to the bathroom for a small cry. ( don’t feel sorry, thats not where I’m going here!) 

In that bathroom I realized I was worrying about all the “what ifs” and trying to solve all the things that needed worked out, in my own head, at exactly the same time. There is not a person on this earth who can do that! I needed to BREATHE. (you know the faith hill song, “Just Breathe”) I needed to relax, take a breath, and trust that things would work out. I can’t force the universe to send the right tenant to us or the best movers, or the magical box packer to pack our place. Everything has to happen in its own time and I have to believe it will all work out. I mean if I don’t believe it why would the universe or anyone else? 

Just let it breathe. When you get so wrapped up in emotions, its hard to be rational. You know how you get the best ideas when you’re in the shower or vacuuming.. well, it’s the same concept. I needed to let my problems breathe so that I could see the answer. When you stare so hard at the problem, you completely miss the answer waving at you with the giant light up sign behind it!  You also miss the journey of finding the answer. Which is usually where you learn the most and makes the answer that much more beautiful.  I also momentarily lost sight that i am not in this alone. Tom is right there next to me helping every step of the way, as are some wonderful family and friends. 

Tom hugged me when I got home that day and told me he found movers. (He has no idea how much I appreciate him) While we still haven’t found a tenant, we have a contingency plan, and people have started emailing about the place. Some friends helped us pack and made us dinner. We are getting there and I am working on breathing.

I am blessed, grateful, and breathing. I declared this to be Grati-Vember and in just a week, I completely distracted myself and stopped thinking about the things and people I’m grateful for!  Wherever you at right now, whatever you’re thinking about, don’t forget to be grateful for what you have and the journey your on. It’s a journey only you get to take and only you get to make it what you want it to be!

P.S the cats think the box city is spectacular and have been playing king of the castle ever since! and if you want to know more about Mercury Retrograde check out this article from Gala Darling, a blogger I just discovered! How to survive Mercury Retrograde

Saturday, November 3, 2012


It's November and I am loving all of the 30 days of gratitude posts on Facebook. Living in the North East and hearing all the stories of loss from Hurricane Sandy, (Half of manhattan NY still doesn't have power!) this seems extra appropriate to be even more great-full for all our blessings. I truly believe focusing on all the things we do have rather than what we don't is part of the key to a happier life. I also believe what you think about most, you attract to yourself. In other words, thinking of all you are grateful for brings more things for which to be grateful. Now, I know that has to be hard for someone who has just lost their house, car, someone they love, or everything. I wish I could help take away that pain but I hope and imagine in those situations, they too are grateful, if even just to be alive.  I cant imagine what and incredible struggle some folks are going through right now but sometimes in the midst of great struggles come the most beautiful things.

"Strength shows not only in the ability to persist, but in the ability to start over."
- F.Scott Fitzgerald

I am thankful for so much in my life and in honor I'd like to dub November "Grati-Vember". I want to work on being more grateful each day and really acknowledging it. So I'm going to theme all of my posts this month on gratitude.  I also want to know what you are thankful for so I'd love for you to grab the badge above and share on your blog what your thankful for! Or just leave a comment, or post on your Facebook page. Heck, even just thinking about what your thankful works! The world needs more thankfulness and love right now so lets get it going! 

Today I am thankful for pumpkin spice coffee, saturday mornings relaxing on the couch with Tom, and bear patterned pants from my mom. 

How about you??

Happy Grati-Vember!