Gifts Not Gaps, Connection vs. Conflict

These are the words that I repeat daily in my mind and out loud with my family. 

Today my husband said the words, as if they were his original thoughts. This is a huge compliment. They stuck and mean something to him too and I loved this moment.

I sometimes have a tendency to focus on the gaps, the little things that frustrate me, instead of the gifts that my family bring to my life. I want to stay in the space of creating connections and happiness and seeing the gifted moments and living happily ever after, day by day. When I focus on the gaps, I get stuck in a negative place and I don’t like that. So this is a daily practice to overlook the gaps, to let go, and to get back to joy as quickly as possible.

When my kids are arguing with each other, I ask them if they are creating connections or conflict with one another and if they don’t answer with connections, I ask them what they can do to create a connection instead of a conflict. It empowers them to choose and to take ownership of their actions and to focus on creating peace, just as soon as possible. Our goal is to create happiness and to take care of each other, all the time. 

This is how we find and create happiness day by day.

  
Choose peace.

Choose love.

Choose gifts.

Choose connections.

We get to choose every day!!

What will you choose tomorrow?

nAMaste

  

Here I Am in Yosemite

Yosemite is a majestic place that takes your breathe away! I love being here and feeling so small compared to the huge mountains, tall trees, granite walls and rushing waterfalls.  Life is beautiful.

First time skiing together

  

My baby

  

My big baby!

  

Love the light

    
  

Horsetail Falls right before sunset

 
Today was exhilarating. I am happy and exhausted. 

Hope you had a good day!

nAMaste

What Do You Wish For?

  
For me, this is it.

I wish to just be with my family and friends. That’s it. I don’t long for anything else. I want to see Kimmy and Tricia and Johnny and my mom and dad and nieces. I want to see my BFFS and I want to share life’s experience together.

The simple life is good.

Well, I do long for a beach house so that my family and friends can come hang and relax with me and hopefully someone will bring a guitar.

Life is good. What do you wish for?

nAMaste

Opinionless

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I’ve been thinking about opinions lately.

In my family, we have lots of opinions and strong feelings and ideas. We are not afraid to share them and debate them and argue our sides. We are passionate and rather confident with what we each believe, which is healthy and great, but having lots of opinions can sometimes and most times, conflict and bounce against each other creating friction and tension.

I’m not even talking about philosophical opinions. Just basic and strong opinions, like which way the toilet paper roll should hang, or whether we should go for a hike. Sometimes they are over where people should sit. I mean these are really important things to feel strongly about and to discuss and debate, am I right?

The last couple of times I’ve been home, I’ve been practicing having less opinions and listening more than talking. Can I just tell you how much peace I experienced?  Maybe I even offered peace to others through my stillness and acceptance of what was and by not reacting to opinions that were different than mine. I actually enjoyed listening to the debates and not partaking in the conversation, except as a listener, smiling and nodding.  I didn’t feel any tension or stress and this was an A-HA moment. I let people be and didn’t try to move the ocean current of debate in any particular direction. I was just present.

I thought about the Girls’ trips I’ve been on and how much joy I experienced in this type of setting. One of the reasons why I love them so much, is because everyone just goes with the flow and the opinions about what to eat, where to go and what to do are carefree and easy and there is usually immediate group consensus without conflict. An A-HA connection!  Our opinions are in alignment, almost immediately.

Now I’m not advocating being boring and a bump on a log without any feelings or expressions. I’m just wondering if we practice being a little bit more accepting and flowing with other people’s opinions without feeling as strongly about our own or thinking that they are wrong, that we might swirl our ideas together like dance partners and just enjoy being in the moments together a little longer, in sync. We might just celebrate our gifts versus our gaps. Just sayin’

Well, that’s just my opinion. 😉

nAMaste

 

Say Anything

  
We bought new board games this break and played together. This made me very happy! I loved watching the cousins play together at my parent’s house and I loved playing at my house too.  

I absolutely love playing games and am so quietly competitive and have been my entire life. I silently laugh when I win and beat my kids and husband. That seems like such a bad trait, yet at least I’m good at something!

My favorite question tonight that my family had to answer for me, wondering what my opinion would be was, “if I could be the best in the world at something, what would I choose?”

 
What would you choose? What would you want to be the best at?

I thought about my answer while they wrote down their thoughts. I was happy with their ideas on what I might think I’d like to be the best at. They chose:  teaching happiness, soccer, and wife/family woman.

They made me smile. I had to pick from their ideas and I chose wife/family woman as my top pick.

I am a wife and family woman and those roles make up my primary identity. 

My choice was to be the best me I can be. Here I am.

Of course I picked the philosophical question – next time I’ll pick “what would be the weirdest job” and stump them! 🙂

Happy New Year. Don’t forget to play!

nAMaste

Playing and Exploring at Stanford

Here I am. There You are!! How are you? I hope you’re enjoying the last few days of 2015.

Here I am, playing and exploring and relaxing with my family this afternoon on the Stanford campus, downtown Palo Alto and at home sweet home.  I want to share with you some of the beautiful and fun things we discovered while wandering and exploring and geocaching.

  
The oval.

   Gorgeous light on a naked tree in a green field.   

  Exploring the new arts building.

  
Gorgeous planters around campus.  
Exercise as play.   
  Charlie found the smallest geocache ever and was so proud and excited! 

    
  Playing with shapes. 
Hoover Tower as the sun went down.

  
Playing together at home.

Life is good.

Happy almost New Year. Wishing you lots of love and peace!

nAMaste