Prompt 10 – What does unconditional love look like for you?

**Playing catch up on these prompts on this beautiful rainy fall morning.**

What does unconditional love look like to me?

It looks like my dogs.  They love me every day.  They don’t care if I’m hangry, hormonal or having some other human experience.  They are excited to see me every day.  They will cuddle with me even if I was a jerk five minutes ago.  They make me laugh and smile.

The love they show me is contagious.  It makes me want to be a better human for them.  When I’m mad because I’m cleaning up dog fur… for the seventh time that day because Huskies are always shedding, or I’m cleaning up poop or pee because one of them has a serious anxiety problem when it comes to fireworks… I just remember that they would love me if I pooped on the floor or was shedding all over.

In all seriousness, my dogs are a great example of unconditional love every day.  I hope to be more like them when I grow up.

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Prompt 9 – Make a list of the people in your life who genuinely support you, and who you can genuinely trust.

Family.

You guys, I have the best family.  I have a Grandmother, Aunts, Uncles, Cousins (first, second, third… literally hundreds of cousins), Step Siblings, Step Parents, Bio Parents and a Sister I’ve been harassing since the day she was born. that I don’t see for quite a while.  I can go a year in between seeing them… and they still feel like home when we hang out.  I can honestly say without a doubt that I would trust any of them to help me, hold me and cheer for me any day of the week (maybe a slight delay in response on Packer Sundays… ;).

I have many blessings in this life, but my family is one of my biggest blessings.  They have been supporting me since before I knew what a blessing they were.  I cherish each and every family member I have.

If one of my famdangle is reading this now… I love you, let’s hang out :)

Prompt 3 – Two moments I’ll never forget in my life are… Describe them in great detail, and what makes them so unforgettable.

Moment 1:  Standing in the Barn during my wedding late at night.

I took one moment to stand apart from everyone and take in the moment.  Thinking to myself… this is MY day.  And just being filled with such gratitude and joy for all the people who made that day the BEST day.  I will never forget standing there and being filled with such pure love and joy.

Moment 2:  Pep talk from my cousin Carmen

I was at a high school dance.  I had been shut down or pushed out of a group and was feeling bad about myself.  My cousin Carmen came over and gave me the best pep talk.  She basically let me know that I was awesome and everyone else’s opinion did not matter (she used shorter words that rhymed with curse words… or maybe they were just curse words).  Long story short… someone who I loved and admired told me I was worth all the awesomeness.

I know the challenge is to write two moments, but I have so many.  So many special memories of my amazing family. Aunts, Uncles, Cousins, Siblings and Parents… have all blessed me with their time and love.  I am a blessed human and having to choose just two moments reminds me how very blessed I am… because I have HUNDREDS of special moments.

Tis the season!

Wrapping up one year and looking forward to the next. What an interesting process. I remember many years where I couldn’t wait for the fresh start that a new year would bring. Funny how optimistic I always am at this time of year considering I live in Wisconsin and the new year just means 4 more months of cold weather. 

This year however I am just truly thankful and blessed to have experienced all the days in this year so far. I’ve experienced so much growth in so many areas. 

This year marked 5 years of togetherness with my husband and 2 years of marriage. It has seriously flown by.  I’m so thankful for us and hope we continue to share many more trips around the sun together. 

I attended a life and business coaching group for 9 months out of the year that totally changed my perspective on many areas of my life. It’s helped me declutter, repriorotize, rediscover and challenge my thoughts and beliefs. 

I enjoyed my 2nd full year of consulting on my own. It’s been such a rewarding experience and opportunity to work on different projects with different people. Definitely a different kind of education. I’ve really started to appreciate and acknowledge what I can add to a team and project. Being my own cheerleader has been such a blessing. 

My step-son turned 14 and watching him grow and discover himself is something I’m thankful to be a part of every day. He’s such a blessing and gives me perspective and many learning experiences. 

We spent the year focusing on our finances and now find ourselves debt free (except for our home). This is such a freeing accomplishment and it takes so much pressure of our career choices and really allows us to enjoy our 9-5’s more since we don’t feel trapped by them. 

I was diagnosed with Ménière’s disease in August. An inner ear disorder that causes ear ringing, vertigo and nausea. By cutting out caffeine and sodium I’ve managed to control the symptoms (and my anxiety around the sparadic nature of the episodes). So, yay. 

I traveled to Napa (CA), Orlando (FL), Mexico, Lake Placid (NY), Door County (WI), Rockville (MD) and of course Cleveland and Cincinnati for work. I enjoyed every trip and was lucky enough to spend time with great people and make wonderful memories at each location. Not to mention some good food too. 

We took down a wall (thanks HGTV for the words “open concept”, repainted most of the main level, filled a dumpster of crap to declutter the house, and put in new vinyl wood planks instead of the old carpet. 

I started and cancelled a wine club. I started and cancelled a fitness subscription. I gave up giving up Nutella. 

And so many other wonderful things… with wonderful people. 

With only two weeks left in this year, I have nothing but gratitude and love for 2016 and can only imagine what 2017 will bring… and I look forward to finding out. 

February Follies

Month two of 2016.  Today went pretty well as far as Mondays go!  Had a good work day, got laundry and dishes done early in the morning, got my workout(s) in, ate healthy all day, booked more stuff for my birthday trip to Napa Valley and also booked stuff for an awesome trip in March to celebrate awesome ladies supporting each other, networking, healing, learning, growing <– need I go on?  And… it’s in Orlando.  PS, that’s a helluva lot warmer than Wisconsin in March.

I have had so much on my mind lately.  The days are flying by and the nights are filled with weird stress dreams.  I have discovered a few things about myself lately…

  1. I do not like booking my own travel arrangements for vacations.  There are SO many options, prices, experiences, adventures… man oh man.  I’d much rather go on a structured/planned trip that someone else planned.  I have spent more hours thinking about and pondering what to do on my birthday trip to Napa, than I will actually spend in Napa!!  How crazy is that??  Lesson learned – just find a travel agent or friend that really digs that shit and just give them money or wine to do it for me.
  2. I am on a constant journey to better myself.  I am always open to ways to change, evolve, reflect, grow, enhance both myself and my life.  I hope this never changes, I enjoy flexing the muscles of my life to see where I can go and what I can do.
  3. I have a gum problem.  I chew like 8,371 pieces in a day when I’m stressed.  Is there support groups for this?
  4. I am so much more accepting of my body than I was even 6 months ago.  Focusing on eating clean and working out has given me such a different perspective and appreciation for my body and the things that it can do.  I take time every day to love all the bits!

Life has its ups and downs, and lately for me life has had many more ups than downs.  I’ve been really trying to find ways to fully appreciate and acknowledge this phenomenon since I know that might not always be the case :)  Appreciating the small things and each other.

Also – trying to be the biggest, best, badassiest version of myself that this universe will allow!  Which, is a pretty damn cool thing to think about every day.

fitspiration-b16

The 1 year nesting itch

with our one year anniversary less than a week away, I’ve been in major nesting mode. We’ve taken on a few projects to update the house. We have started with the outside/backyard patio. 

   
   

After the patio, the deck around the pool, then inside the house… Then the world!!! :)