Thankful

 

This was the highlight of my day. My kids came out for a hike with me, even though some thought this was a horrible idea.  I wanted us to get out for some fresh air, to move our bodies and to share conversation along the way, away from other distractions. There was some complaining and whining at the beginning and I kept focused on being grateful and patient, thankful that we were all together enjoying the crisp, fresh air and muddy puddles.  I loved watching them taking pictures, bird watching and deer and squirrel watching too. They laughed and danced and ran up and down the hills, teasing each other too.

This was a great way to end our Thanksgiving holiday break. I am thankful for my family, near and far, for traveling and being together sharing meals and conversation and chaos, and for being back home again.

I hope you all enjoyed your holiday, making memories and celebrating with those you love and like!

nAMaste

Family Practice

The kids didn’t have water polo or soccer practice on this particular day. I had to run an errand at the mall and they decided they wanted to come with me. Both wanted to come along. I kinda wanted to go by myself. One wanted to come with just me and to leave the other behind. The other one insisted their homework was complete and that they really wanted to come along and to spend some time together. How could I resist?  But there was going to be some conflict. Isn’t there always a little conflict?

I decided to invite both to join me for some family practice time. We had to practice getting along and working together and figuring out how to get along without bugging each other.  Isn’t that what families are about?

They got in the car and I set the agenda, letting my captive audience know what to expect and requesting that they silence their electronic devices. Can you imagine no Snapchat? Tonight we were having a family practice night, instead of soccer practice or polo practice. Tonight we were going to practice listening and cooperating and being patient and kind. Boy, did we practice. And as you know, with practice, there is a lot of repetition.

We practiced several drills, such as choosing our words, taking turns, ignoring the endless snaps and texts that vied for our attention. We practiced patience and listening and not requesting everything we saw. We practiced waiting and not competing with each other. We practiced delaying gratification and not always getting what we want when we want it. We practiced not rolling our eyes and saying, “Gosh” all the time. We practiced holding hands, going with the flow, and putting our arms around each other. And we practiced breaking bread together.

All in all it was a good night, mixed with a little resistance along the way. I am thankful that my not so little ones wanted to join me on this night for some family togetherness and practicing all that is good.

After all, aren’t we all just practicing in this dress rehearsal called life?

What are you practicing with your family?  I wish you success, peace and love!

nAMaste, BeLoveRs.

Have a good week!  xoxo

 

Whatever Will Be Will Be

It’s been a week, no months, of pushing and watching and questioning and wondering and flexing and letting go and accepting what is to be and flowing with it.

On Thursday, it began. Christian, my high school senior, came home early from school for our lunch date, but I had a work meeting. He went and picked up lunch for us and while I was working, he decided he was going to finally work on his college applications. I’ve been pushing and questioning and wondering and exploring and asking him to own this process since the beginning of summer. He decided that he wanted to go to community college and didn’t want to go through the college app process, and that he was happy with staying local. I accept my kids’ choices and yet I always push them to the edge and maybe over their comfort zone and I question their motivation and intention. I am okay with their decisions and I want to be sure they think through the costs and benefits and risks, every step they take. I ask the hard questions, set up challenges, and then give them space to own their decisions and the path they choose to take.

Well, on Thursday he decided he was going to apply to the University of Iowa and he decided he was going to fill out the application that day. While I was wrapping up work, he requested that I push my computer aside so that I could look over his online application on his laptop. Let me just say I was surprised and curious and supportive and perplexed and thankful and scared. I helped validate the form and gave my credit card number to pay for the application fee, all while wondering where did this come from?  I was proud that he (finally) decided to begin the process before the almost deadline. We clicked send and then I wondered, “what if?”

Flash forward to today, when I was busy working again to put money away for the kids’ college fund, when I received a text: 



And just like that, our thoughts have shifted and the opportunity is in front of us and we are thankful and curious and shocked and excited for the possibilities. Who knows what will come next, but for now I am thankful for the journey and know that whatever will be will be…and I am proud of Christian and wish him well as he navigates this next stage. Congratulations!! Be still my heart. 

Happy Hour

It’s 5:00ish here – it’s happy hour!  Are you feeling happy?

How was your day?   I have a little break between work and play and wanted to check in as I was thinking of it being 5:00 and it being happy hour, even when I was home cooking and cleaning.  It made me think of our definition of happy hour and how often we celebrate “it.”

We can and should celebrate happy hour every day, and it doesn’t just have to be at 5:00 with a drink in your hand.

Maybe your happy hour is when you first wake up in the morning and the house is still quiet.

I think I’ve had several happy hours today.  Mine started when Jeff brought me a cup of coffee while I was still in bed. This ritual makes me really happy. My cat wanted to sit with me and stay warm and who was I to deny him his happiness? I am a giver like that, and just had to stay a few minutes longer.

Maybe your happy hour is when you’re running or working out.  I didn’t choose to spend a happy hour working out today, although I thought about it.  I got in the groove of work and just kept going. Some days are like that.

I actually really love working, and most of the hours are happily spent doing what I’m doing, feeling creative, solving problems and helping others.  Do you enjoy your daily work? I think if we are going to be spending several hours a day working, that we should be enjoying this part of our journey too.

What about after work? What do you love?

Today I enjoyed being prepared to make a recipe that I had chosen this weekend and got to use the grill. I don’t know why this made me happy, but I think it’s because it intimidates me a little and makes me uncomfortable.  After using the grill and making sure the patties were each at 160 degrees, without a flame or burn, I felt strangely proud and like I conquered the all powerful grill. I am happy that I have a meal ready for everyone when they come home from their long days. Feeding my family makes me incredibly happy.  Such a basic need, and one that I truly love.


And now, this happy (partial ) hour of connecting and writing is done… I have more to do, to create more happily ever moments before the day is done.

Join me by enjoying whatever you choose to do next and we’ll celebrate happy hour together!

Cheers!

Adriana

 

 

 

 

 

 

Observing

The rain came and it was a perfect day to nestle inside. I was thankful for the rain and for choosing to slow down and to let the day unfold.

I was looking through recipes in the family room and heard Charlie playing on his drums. I came to his room and invited myself in to listen and observe, which I normally don’t do. I’m usually telling him to close his door and complaining that it’s too loud.

He smiled and I think he enjoyed my company, even though he was confused when I told him I was excited for his performance. He asked, “what performance?”  Obviously, because he was just playing to play. I was joking, but I was happy to just sit and watch him play, and to be present in this moment with him, with no expectations. He had his headphones on and no one was telling him to be quiet or to close his door and we all let him play freely. He played and jammed and I smiled.

Soon Juliana came in to listen as well. She say me enjoying him and she soon wanted to play too. My little cutie let her in and tried to teach her a little rhythm and my heart was full.


I noticed how much fun they were having and it made me want to play too, even though I have no rhythm at all and was a little fearful to even try. He told me which drum to hit on which count and then praised my drumming attempt. We switched spots and it was really cool!


I was laughing my head off and Charlie grabbed my phone to take videos. 

This was a fun, morning,  pajama jam session!  Thank you Charlie for sharing your passion with us. You made my day. 

How was your day? What moment did you really enjoy? Hope you have a good week. xo

One Love


Today I was validated. Over and over again. This is a great feeling, one that we all want, and I am thankful for the experience and this one beautiful life I’ve been given. Thanks mom and dad, for giving me this opportunity to live it up, to love this life and to laugh out loud!!

Today was chaotic and great.

I flowed. I loved. I was present. 

I enjoyed my family and friends and work and yoga. It doesn’t get much better than this.

My friend chose to come stay with me last night and left today, and before she left, she surprised me with this gift that I found on my desk after uber came to pick her up and take her to the airport, so that I could be at my kids’ sporting events.

During our short time together, I shared with her that I haven’t been blogging as much lately and that I’ve been sitting with the feeling of accepting this slower pace, and not quite giving it up and not quite sure the direction it would take. I have been blogging daily for 4 years and lately have slowed down and am figuring out what the future holds.

She gave me this gift of a journal and a sticker with my favorite thought, One Love. She gets me. She wants me to continue to write, even if I choose to write privately and she encouraged me to continue my passion and to consider writing children’s stories, based on the parenting practices we shared, and practice every day.

Thank you, Jen, for this gift and for the inspiration and spark and for choosing to come spend time with me! 

I love you!   One Love…let’s make America great, one moment at a time!! xoxo

October

I’ve been hearing that October is coming for weeks now. Someone has been very excited and has been making plans for decorating our house for Halloween. He would probably start in September, but he knows I like to wait until the beginning of the month to begin celebrating any given holiday. He was well prepared and kept asking me when we could go up into the attic to get down the Halloween boxes and when we could go to the Spirit Halloween store.  He knew that this weekend was THE weekend and he had a plan.

img_4429

I told him that we could go into the attic in the morning, after we had our coffee. Of course, as soon as his eyes had opened, he was asking if we had had our coffee yet. Have I told you that someone in our family is quite determined and a little planner?

Luckily he waited for us, however he couldn’t sit still and kept tapping the stick that pulls down the attic door. He was so excited that he was bouncing off the walls.

When we finally got up from the table and Jeff was ready to open the attic, he was asking if he could go up in the attic too. Jeff had the typical dad answer, which was “no,” until Charlie worked his magic. He informed us that he could do it now and that he was no longer 5.  He was now big and wanted to explore and to see what was up there and he had us convinced.  I loved watching him carefully climb up the ladder and grow up in that moment. He definitely is no longer 5 and I could literally see him growing up, right there. And the smile on his face showed all his success.

My no longer five year old, still loves the holidays and for this I am thankful. I received joy by watching him love the experience, tearing open the boxes once again with wonder and decorating our home.

img_4436

I love that he is growing up before my eyes and that he still is my little boy.

Happy Fall, everyone!  I hope you enjoy October.

xoxo