Seasons

Reminder Reflections: 8 Lessons Remembered From Last Year

Since July happens to be the start of my “new year,” summer has come to be a reflection point for me. As I reflect on the last year, I have to say as I get older I have gotten better at celebrating and being celebrated. I just finished a business book about cultivating teams and collaboration. One of the concepts that struck me was the idea that people need to reminded more than they need to be instructed (props to Patrick Lencioni).
I don’t feel much wiser than I was thirty or even 365 days ago (or that much older, for the record thankyouverymuch); but I do feel reminded of a few things that I may have lost sight of for a bit.

Mental Health Awareness, Not Just October and a New Cause Calendar

It’s hard to believe that October is already here. I find the rest of the year always goes so fast after Halloween. This past year I decided to forgo many of the usual get-togethers and celebrations I have held in the past to focus on more personal matters.

I have posted less, trying to focus on quality not quantity; what has been happening in my life has had a lasting and permanent impact on my life, so that influenced my writing and point-of-view, prompting me to adjust the look, feel of my site a few months ago and resolve to a new site mantra: today is a gift, that’s why it is called the present.

So the in honor of Mental Health Awareness Week—a cause near and dear to me—I have added a new page, an Awareness Calendar, listing all (or many) of the days, weeks and months dedicated to social advocacy and social responsibly for a variety of causes. This lives in a new section called Resources where Anniversaries, Birthstones and annual Holidays still reside and new ones may surface (stay tuned).

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40 things I’ve Learned Over 40 Years 

July is less than 90 minutes away. As a kid the beginning of July was like the countdown to the New Year at midnight. Every day until the twelfth I would get giddier, more excited, convinced that each year would make me smarter, prettier, more adept.

One year, I think it was when I turned five, I remember waking up and running to the easel standing in my bedroom and drawing a flower with crayons. Armed with the certainty that because I went to sleep a four-year-old and woke up a much savvier five, I would craft a more perfect, more precise flower. That drawing, framed and dated, would hang in my mothers’ hallway for years.

So now, on the cusp of 40, I am not going to wait until the morning of my birthday to feel older and wiser. I am in a reflective mood and decided to start to ponder what I have learned over the last four decades, and I chose (appropriately) 40 things. I wasn’t totally sure I could come up with that many things worthy of note–perhaps not all are to everyone–but they have special meaning to me.

So, for those who care to partake, the 40 most meaningful things I’ve learned in the last 40 years.  Maybe I’ll come up with a completely different set by 50.

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Taxicab Confessions: Birthday Edition

I was in the taxi with my kids yesterday, on our way to the movies. We were having a conversation about, of all things, my birthday. They both know how old I’m about to turn, 40–or as my daughter likes to say, “the big 4-0” and my son likes to remind me “that’s four decades, mom”–and they feel “it’s a big one.” So in the cab, they were debating the virtues of different celebrations, ideas and trips we should consider. This has been a rough year, as you may have previously read–and it’s hard to get up the gusto to want to celebrate in a manner that’s out of the ordinary right now. My answer was “it’s just a number, like any other…lets just do what we’ve always done.”  

And then I saw a post from a friend the night before.

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Looking Back on Summer: Baseball, Camp, Forgiveness and Faith

This is the longest spate I’ve not posted on my blog. It’s so funny, the reason I usually stop writing is not lack of ideas or things to say, but too much to say. It becomes overwhelming and I don’t know where to start. Much has happened already this year, some I have shared and some I don’t, well, know where to start… Some seems almost moot now. I sent my kids to camp: baseball, theater and technology (yes, technology). We were all pretty busy, so no vacations were planned although we did go on a few day trips: Coney Island, the Ripley’s Museum and Madame Tussaud’s.

But the crux of my summer boils down into better understanding three primary themes: Forgiveness, Authenticity and Faith.

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When Commencement Commences: Celebrating the Graduate

This month both of my children will be graduating–one from elementary school and one from middle school–and entering a new phase. It’s an exciting time that comes with anticipation, reflection and even a bit of sadness.
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Vacation Victory and Remembrance

A little over a week ago my family and I returned from a family trip to the Caribbean. These kinds of trips are always incredibly special to me. I have memories of spring vacations from when I was growing up so nostalgia is part of it, but it’s also been a while since the four of us have been able to go away together. So this trip felt special in a few ways–almost like a victory for our family.

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Spring Cleaning and Shopping From My Closet

The changing of the seasons is always fun for me. After a few months of the same wardrobe I am pretty tired of the same-old-same-old and a closet refresh–even if it’s simply pulling out items from another time–is a nice change of pace. My favorite style-switch-over is winter to spring/summer so this time of year gives me fashion-joy like none other.

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April Roller Coaster Recap – 6 A-Ha Moments

It’s hard to believe it’s practically May and I haven’t written a post in almost a month. April was a bit of a roller coaster for me–emotions and decisions, new opportunities and (my personal favorite) change. Any and all of this could reasonably account for my loss of time and lack of word count–but if I’m being totally honest, there was also some recreational time packed in there for relaxing and enjoying a week off with my family (more on that later).

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For St Patrick’s Day – Getting Grateful, Feeling Fortunate, Giving Luck

It’s mid-March and I am finding quotes, cards and info-graphics about luck and good fortune popping up in my newsfeeds and inboxes almost daily. All understandable with St. Patricks Day imminently approaching, but it made me stop and think about the meaning of luck–or rather, it’s meaning to me. Some believe we make our own luck, others believe it’s being at the right place at the right time. The Roman philosopher Seneca said that luck was a combination of preparation and opportunity. I think it’s a bit different–although who am I to argue with a philosopher–I think luck has two primary vectors to those that believe in it:
1. How we view ourselves
2. How we view the world around us

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