Sunday, October 19, 2008

Vacation Musings...

After a much needed vacation, I returned to New York rested and a little saner but also with a lot on my mind. I guess when the body and the mind get a chance to slow down, you start to notice things that perhaps you've gotten too used to.

Just a quick background info- my mom took a little tumble in the backyard and ended up injured. Not the best scenario for a vacation but also the best prescription for the two of us. With her out of commission, we were forced to slow down considerably and have a little more R&R than perhaps we would have.

Enter the wheelchair and cane.

I have always thought of myself as a fairly tolerant and considerate person. I believe that my parents taught me the best they could have and I am very grateful for that.

BUT I feel like there are people on this planet who have not been blessed with the same education.

I met some of the most helpful and considerate people over the last few weeks. I am really grateful to them for taking some of the pressure off of me- most of it self-induced I admit.

I hate seeing the people I love in any sort of pain. I hate seeing the look on their face when they just can't help themselves in the same ways that they are used to.

Getting ourselves in and out of cars, planes, elevators and cruise ships was a challenge for sure. I am surprised by the reaction of other people while witnessing my experience.

Just to vent for a moment- the complete lack of regard for someone in a wheelchair amazes me. Why do you need to ram your oversized suitcases into an elevator without looking to see where you're aiming your bag? Perhaps there is someone in a wheelchair sitting there with knees braces and ankle braces that could perhaps be in your line of attack? Perhaps your patience has been earned, if not given willingly, just because someone can't move as fast as you'd like them to. Perhaps you could give up that "go, go go" mentality for just a moment as someone tries to do something for themselves that they haven't been able to. Perhaps you could put aside the pushing and shoving just for a little bit. Perhaps you could say please, thank you or any of the other trivial "common" everyday sayings that we all take for granted.

I saw all of this over my vacation and some or most directed towards myself or my mom. Having her slow down forced me to slow down. I needed it so much more than she did. I had to put aside my own agenda of constant movement, constant action, I need to be here, I need to do that mentality.

I also did see an amazing amount of kindess and that was also something that I really needed to see and something that I need to embrace myself.

As much as it saddened me to be on the receiving end of some unkindness and intolerance, it really opened my eyes. I needed to see all of this and I needed to learn how to buffer myself from it and not be nearly as sensitive. It's not a personal affront. Some people just don't know any better.

My job now is to open up just a few more pairs of eyes and maybe make things a little bit easier for someone else. Life is hard enough for all of us, we could do a little something to make someone else's journey a little smoother.

Just my two cents...

Sunday, August 10, 2008

When Friends become your Family

I've been toying around with this idea for a while. I kept thinking, yes, let me write about this now. Or no, it's not quite time yet.

But the truth comes out that this is much harder to broach than I had originally thought.

I have a wonderful family. My mom is close by in both location and heart. My brothers and their families are not so close in distance and although, we don't always see eye to eye, we always have each other's best interests at heart.

But what happens in between all the family time?

You work, you play. You spend time in places where your family is not.

I don't know where I read the statistics, but we spend more time at work than we do at home. How scary is that? No matter how hard we try, we often end up spending more time with our co-workers than we do with our loved ones.

This can be a challenging situation for some, as it was for me in the beginning.

On the outside looking in, we are as different as different can be. Our cultures are different. We had different degrees of education, majors, family situations, siblings, places of birth. You name the difference and we had it.

However, if you open up your heart and allow the differences to take on a lesser importance, then you find that you are really not all the different from the people you work with.

As much as I've thought about it, my co-workers have really become my brothers and my sisters. We've got each others best interests at heart, much like my own brothers have.

It's a very interesting situation because by not being related by blood, you are more open to sharing your opinion and being open about your past. There is no pre-existing knowledge of a shared childhood. They are seeing through your eyes and are able to add their own knowledge of their own childhood into yours. They can help to color your memories with a brighter and more vibrant spin than perhaps you were able to give it yourself.

The best thing that you walk away with is a larger support network of people who know you, who love you and accept you exactly the way you are.

You can choose your friends. You cannot choose your family.

You cannot choose your co-workers but you can choose to have them become friends.

I feel very lucky to have a group of people who know me and understand me (sometimes more than others) but still love me unconditionally and wish me the best.

So this can be challenging to write about. How do you put into words the gratitude you have for people who you spend so much time with, who you can't escape from but yet who you have no real ties to other than the shared experience of your workplace?

You really can't. But the opinions they have of you, if you're ever lucky to hear them, is perhaps higher than the one you have for yourself.

"Don't mistake her kindness for weakness."

"You are destined for greater things, I can just feel it."

I am so very grateful to have them in my life. I couldn't have chosen better.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

The Nature of Passion

Okay, so before you think this is some post about sex and sexuality, it's not.

I want to address the topic of passion and I mean more about passion for life.

A few months back I was driving down the East Side of Manhattan and when I hit the point where the Harlem River Drive becomes the FDR- right under the Triboro Bridge- I saw a familiar face.

After many years of driving through rush hour traffic, I've come to recognize some fixtures on the highway. It's not uncommon for me to see the same drivers, in the same cars, driving at the same time from week to week.

One of these fixtures is a, let's call him artist/poet, Otis Houston. The only reason I even know his name is because he posts signs pointing you to google him or check him out on myspace, or small poems or words of wisdom.

Sometimes its his form of performance art. There is usually some sort of fruit involved, like watermelon. You'll see a little more of him here.

Even though he catches my eye every day I see him, there was one day that stuck out moreso than others.

On one day, he had posted a sign that I will never forget.

"Don't ration your passion."

Simple, right?

It's not just about the words. If you think about what he was saying with that sign is that you shouldn't hold yourself back.

We are in a society where we are always, even painfully, politically correct. Why?

Who are we helping by not being honest with ourselves? Who are we helping by holding back who or what we are?

Read this, it could change your life.

"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our Light, not our Darkness, that most frightens us.
We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?
Actually, who are you NOT to be?
You are a child of God.
Your playing small does not serve the world.
There is nothing enlightening about shrinking so that other people won't feel unsure around you. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us.
It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone.
As we let our own Light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.
As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others..."

-- Marianne Williamson

So think again what it is that you do with your passion? Are you hiding it? Are you making the most of it?

My question is- can you do more with it?

Are you living your life's purpose or are you hiding it because you don't think you'll be loved or accepted?

I've made the decision that I am going to be my beautiful, wonderful authentic self. I am not afraid of succeeding in my chosen field. I am already successful. I am already embracing my passion.

Free yourself. Live your passion. Live your life.

Or in the words of Otis Houston, "Don't ration your passion."

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

The Master Cleanse

Have you ever heard of the Master Cleanse?

It is a somewhat severe cleanse that is designed to help loosen up your digestive system, clear you out and leave you with more energy, better digestion and an overall better sense of physical well-being.


The last time that I went on the Master Cleanse, I spent 10 days drinking my lemon juice, maple syrup, cayenne pepper and water mixture. I felt pretty good until about the 8th day. I know now that 10 days for me is too much.

When I decided to do the cleanse again for 3 days, I figured, no problem!

I made it just over a day and a half. I wasn't into it. I knew that I was going to be hungry the first day as my body transitioned to a liquid diet. My energy wasn't off really. My mood was good. But my brain wasn't into it. So I stopped.

I try to explain to my clients that deciding what you need to eat is such a highly individualized thing that it changes all the time. I can't give someone a super specific diet that they will follow for the next month, season, year because it just won't work.

The recipe for the Master Cleanse does not change.

My body, however, does.

I don't feel like a failure that I wasn't able to do my 3 days. I'm actually really glad that I was able to listen to my body and know that maybe, this wasn't the cleanse for me, or the cleanse for me right now.

I'm open to experiementing and I'm glad to be able to have the chance to do that.

I'm realizing more and more that being gluten-free will do me more good than cutting out anything else like fat or sugar or salt like a lot of people might need to do to get to their ideal diet.

Doing the research for gluten-free foods and products can take a lot of time but I consider myself very lucky that I've surrounded myself with people who are either in the same boat or who are willing to support me through that process.

If you think that there is something that you're eating that you shouldn't be, don't hesitate to experiement with taking it out of your diet. The worst things that can happen is that you add it back in.

Not a bad deal!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Figuring it all out...

The funny thing about food is that as soon as you think you've gotten it all figured out, you find out that there is something that you didn't know that ends us being so important.

I've been working on the wheat and gluten thing for a little bit of time now but I keep finding that I'm reacting more and more to different foods that used to be okay for me.

Geez! As if the wheat and gluten weren't enough!

Seriously though, I can feel a difference in my body and in my energy. It's amazing to think how much time I spent feeling not 100% and not knowing why. Sure I could have exercised more, eaten more fruits and vegetables, drank more water and gotten more sleep, but this whole wheat and gluten thing goes deeper than just all of that. Did you know that wheat and gluten is everywhere?

I'm telling myself over and over again that I need to cook more to keep myself healthy. To be honest, I'm okay about it but my problem is a little different than just cooking.

I'm frustrated by not being able to eat anything and everything that I want. I want to be able to just go into a store and know that I can eat, without a reaction, anything I want in that store.

The reality is that I can't.

The real truth is that I'm okay with it but I'm not sure where to start first. With the weather getting warmer, turning to beans and rice just seems too heavy.

SO, fruits and veggies?

Sounds like the best idea so far.

My favorite cookbook so far is "Greens, Glorious Greens." There are just so many incredible recipes and I've only scratched the surface.

I'm also thinking of reenstating my summer smoothie habit. I just can't wait for the weather to get a little bit warmer. As I'm sitting here typing, it's about maybe 60 degrees and raining outside. Definitely not warm enough to start thinking raw.

My next summer experiment is going to be raw meals. Don't get me wrong, I love a good BBQ and I love meat, but there are just some totally yummy raw dishes out there.

If you're in NYC, head down to Pure Food & Wine (or if they'll let you, Pure Juice & Takeaway) and ask for the lasagna. It's made of squash and so yummy. Then again, you could just take a trip down there for the Bunny Brew.

Come to think of it, when the weather gets a little less rainy, I'll also need to take a trip down to Babycakes for my tummy friendly sugar fix. If you're interested, let me know!

I have a lot of experiementing to do. I'm going to be checking out Gluten-free Girl's blog and any other gluten free resources that I can find.

I'll keep you posted!

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Experiments in Eating!!!

I love food.

I love everything about food, it's taste (obviously), its smell, it's texture, practically everything.

BUT I have learned that there is one part of food that still doesn't sit well with me, literally.

I have found that as I have learned to eat in a more healthy way, in a way that feels better for my body, I have gotten more sensitive.

Doesn't make sense?

It didn't make sense for the longest time to me either.

Here's the way I think about it.

I used to eat anything I wanted. Since I was very active, it never seemed like a big deal. But once I started studying nutrition and all of the ways that our bodies react to the things we put inside of it, I started to think.

What if, there was a better way for me to eat?

See, my allergies have been just this little annoyance for me. No big deal. Sinuses, same. I'd always be a little warmer than everyone else, so winter was okay for me but sometimes summer could be brutal.

Why do I mention this? I mention it because I honestly feel like all of this manifests itself directly in proportion to the way I eat.

I eat "bad", my allergies, sinus issues, heat problems become blown up out of proportion.

So I started eating more fruits and veggies and wouldn't you know it, I started to feel better. I slept better. I had more energy. My skin cleared itself up and PMS, well that wasn't so much of an issue. Any premenstrual cramps I had disappeared once I decided that milk wasn't doing very much for me. I was happier and healthier and my digestive system ran like a well oiled machine.

BUT and this is a huge but here, all of the benefits that I had stopped at the ones I listed above. I was eating better, but still wasn't where I should be for my body.

Let me make a huge distinction here. I say "My body" specifically because each of us have out own stuff to deal with. My body is different from yours and every one elses on this planet. What may work for me, may not work for you.

There are, however, some universal truths that we can all embrace that will make everyone feel better. Period.

This is where I am taking May.

I eat well but I know I can eat better.

For instance, I've realized that wheat doesn't work for me. My stomach blows up like a Macys Thanksgiving Day parade balloon whenever I eat a "regular" slice of bread, have any sort of pasta and for the most part, baked desserts.


I have learned that I can eat well and even better if I make a few adjustments.

This is what has been working for me so far. I know that this will change as I get older, as the weather changes and as my life situation changes.

So far:

1. Wheat and gluten are no friends of mine.
2. Same goes for milk and most dairy products
3. I still love cheese but I understand that if I want to eat it, I need to deal with the stuffy nose and other consequences afterwards, i.e. it had better be worth it
4. Sugar. Yes I have a sweet tooth, but this needs to be limited to natural sugars, period. My body doesn't like you. My body does like extra dark bitter chocolate.
5. Vegetables are more than just good for you, they are delicious too! Yay kale!
6. Pot liquor! If you don't know what it is, ask or google it. It made my world turn green, in a good way, for a whole day!
7. I love, love, love fruit. Smoothies are the way to go for me, even if they all turn out brown.

There will be plenty more.

My question today is about peanuts and peanut butter. I didn't know that they were or can be classified as a fungus, or react as such. Maybe that's why my tummy protests after some plain peanut butter...

One last word on Gratitude...

As much as I don't want this experiment in gratitude to end, it must because that's just the way things happen. It's been an amazing month and I am really grateful to have been able to share this journey with all of you.

Feel free to post your own reactions to our month of Gratitude. Has it changed anything in your life? Has it changed the way you look at things?

So without further ado, my last day.

Wednesday, April 30th

1. A surprising conversation with an old friend
2. Being where I am, right now
3. 30 whole minutes to myself to just breathe
4. Realizing that maybe peanuts and peanut butter just doesn't work for me
5. Waking up on time and even before my alarm

There you have it. The very last post for the month of April, albeit a few days after...

I'm a busy girl, you know...

As for here, I'm turning May into another experimental month. Perhaps it'll even survive past May.

May is henceforth known as "Experiments in Eating!"

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

One day more...

I can't believe that there is just one day left in the month of April. This gratitude experiement has been amazing and one that I know I will continue for many, many days.

I've been thinking about what form this blog will take once April is over. I will continue with writing about gratitude but I'm also going to be writing about my eating experiements. This is going to be a huge source of gratitude for me because I am learning what my body can tolerate and exactly what it cannot. So huge for me.

I can't wait to keep going on this crazy, amazing journey of mine. Keep tuning in, it's going to be something else!

Tuesday, April 29th

1. Bursts of inspiration
2. A light schedule on a day when I needed it
3. Playing with my Dog, Sally
4. Knowing what foods to avoid
5. Great conversations

Monday, April 28th

1. My next step towards financial freedom
2. Being able to be there for a friend
3. The idea for the best birthday gift ever!
4. Planning ahead
5. Creativity

Sunday, April 27th

1. A good night's sleep
2. Feeling productive
3. Daily Detox Tea
4. This year's series of Detox Foot Pads
5. Finally filing my papers

Sunday, April 27, 2008

I'm almost there!

I FINALLY got the chance to catch up with some old friends. I got some good news and some bad but all in all, I've been able to keep this mindset of gratitude strong all month long. I can't believe that April is almost over. I haven't decided yet what I'm going to do with all this gratitude, I'd love to say that I'll write out my gratitude list every day but who knows what will happen over the next few weeks, months or years?

I am so grateful to have had a chance to show my gratitude even though it's in this simplistic form. It works for me and I have noticed such a huge effect on my life.

Saturday, April 26th

1. Good times with old friends
2. Finding a parking spot a block and a half away from where I need to be
3. Good doctors and fast reaction times
4. A comfy bed
5. Being able to be comfortable being 100% honest

Friday, April 25th

1. Sleeping late!
2. Zero traffic
3. Knowing that while my mom may be bruised up and swollen, she didn't hurt herself falling
4. A reprieve at work...
5. A promise for quality time

Thursday, April 24, 2008

So far, so good! : )

Although I was hit unexpectedly by my allergies, it's been a bit of a blessing in disguise. I've been forced to slow down. I've stopped to smell the roses, so to speak. ; )

I have had these incredible bursts of inspiration and that has been an amazing blessing. I think I might need to carry around some kind of recording device to capture all of my brillance!

Thursday, April 24th

1. An honest opinion
2. A good laugh with friends
3. Authenticity
4. On-time clients
5. The way my life currently is going

Wednesday, April 23rd

1. Sincerity
2. A cocktail before bed
3. Really bad reality tv
4. A really incredible offer
5. A hot shower

Tuesday, April 22nd

1. An open mind
2. A "Numbers" Guy
3. Patience
4. Unexpected presents
5. Any reason to celebrate

Monday, April 21st

1. Zinc
2. Puffs plus tissues
3. Changing plans
4. The support of friends
5. Inspiration

Monday, April 21, 2008

Springtime keep me busy, keeps me outside and moving around, BUT not at a computer!

Sunday, April 20th

1. Little or no traffic going to and coming home from Long Island
2. Time spent with friends who have turned into family
3. A flourless chocolate torte
4. The knowledge that I'm not a reality tv star
5. Happy moments of inspiration

Saturday, April 19th

1. Fuji Apples
2. A body scrub in the shower
4. Beautiful Spring weather, okay, maybe Summer weather
5. Letting my feet breathe in sandals!

Friday, April 18th

1. An amazing sunrise
2. Time to sit and read
3. A conversation with a friend
4. Leaving work "early"
5. A yummy and well-timed gyro

Thursday, April 17th

1. Amazing clients
2. Energy for cardio (my own!)
3. Comfy clothes
4. Putting my feet up
5. Petting my dog, Sally

Wednesday, April 16th

1. A 7 am yoga class (yikes!)
2. Knowing that a spring cleanse is in my near future
3. An understanding friend
4. Still getting to bed early
5. Someone who can make me laugh

Tuesday, April 15th

1. Waking up early
2. Feeling super productive
3. My mom : )
4. My awesome clients
5. Getting to bed early

Monday, April 14th

1. PATIENCE, from myself and others
2. A helping hand exactly when it's needed
3. Dark chocolate
4. Not hitting any traffic at all
5. Finding an ice pack when I needed it

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Am I ready for Monday?

This is one of the first weekends where I have done very little and I truly feel like my body needed it and deserved it. I entered the weekend with throbbing, achy feet and now they are much better and much happier.

Saturday, April 12th

1. Sleeping late
2. Early bedtimes
3. Do-nothing time
4. My 1st day of the year wearing sandals
5. French fries

Sunday, April 13th

1. My running shoes, a.k.a. my comfy old friends
2. Central Park in bloom
3. Runners cheering on for other runners
4. Some delicious oranges
5. My "Foot Pleaser" foot massager

Saturday, April 12, 2008

It's been a good week...

Thursday, April 10th

1. A real, sincere compliment
2. Time to put my feet up
3. Being able to help out a friend
4. A nice long walk
5. Blooming flowers

Friday, April 11th

1. Love
2. A shared laugh
3. A really comfy bed
4. The mean green car missing hitting my own car
5. A flying saucer, even though I'm not supposed to be eating them! Yummy!

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

A few days of Gratitude...

Gratitude is a funny thing. It can happen in an instant but the effects last as long as you can remember them. I absolutely remember mine.

Saturday, April 5th

1. Creativity, either my own or others
2. Passion to make a difference in the world
3. Finding legal & free parking on the street in Times Square
4. Confidence to do things on my own, without flinching
5. Early bedtimes

Sunday, April 6th

1. Spending time with good friends
2. The hood on my sweatshirt
3. Volunteering for a half marathon
4. The smiles on the faces of women who finished their 1st half marathon
5. Yogatoes- they help stretch out the webbing on my feet

Monday, April 7th

1. Sleeping late (is 9 pm late?)
2. Someone who can make me laugh
3. Honest communication
4. Quiet time to work out, in my own time
5. Someone to just listen, without judgement

Tuesday, April 8th

1. Inspiration
2. Stress, yes, I mean it
3. A working computer internet connection
4. Freeze dried fuji apples & asian pears
5. My dog, Sally's wagging tail

Wednesday, April 9th

1. Two simple little words- thank you
2. A really good, long laugh
3. A nice, hot shower
4. Random questions
5. Time to put my feet up

For me, it's the little things that mean the most. I don't need the big, in your face acts that remind me just how grateful I am to be living this day. Gratitude is just gratitude.

Friday, April 4, 2008

Today's observation of Gratitude

I'm realizing now that Gratitude comes in many shapes, sizes and forms. I realize that I have so much to be grateful for and that every moment that I allow myself to feel (and I do mean really feel) grateful that my life is infinitely better than the moment before.

What I was grateful for on Wednesday, April 2nd:

1. My alarm clock
2. The sunrise
3. The sunset

I'm going to address these three together because they were so intimately related on Wednesday. I am grateful for my alarm clock because it was the only reason that I woke up on time and made it to work early enough to be ready to torture my pilates students.

Because of my alarm clock going off at the right time, I am so grateful to have had the chance to see the moon in the crisp, clean air as I drove into Manhattan. As I watched the moon, I was able to see the sun rise underneath it. It was pretty cool and such a quiet moment to really set my day off the best way I could have thought possible.

I did say that the sunset was related to both the alarm clock and the sunrise. Well, that is only partly true. I am so grateful for the sunset because I was also able to see that from my car. Doesn't seem like such a big deal, right? Well, since I usually miss the sunset, I was very grateful to be on my way home while the sun was setting. Somewhat unheard of, but very much needed!

4. My lack of internet connection

I was so super-motivated to get home and get myself on the computer before I headed off to bed. BUT my computer decided to not connect to the internet. So I went to bed early. I am so so so grateful for that.

5. One of those lavender scented body hot packs

I know you've all seen these things at your own local mall. They look like little pillows and are usually sold by people looking to reduce your stress. I've made it somewhat of a bedtime ritual to heat mine up in the microwave and use it to warm up my bed before I get into it. I love the feeling of a warm bed especially now with the damp, sometimes chilly nights of the springtime. It really makes my falling asleep so much easier.

Thursday, April 3rd

1. All of my amazing clients

I am constantly amazed by all of my clients. Whether they are working on their food and wellness "stuff" me or in the gym working on their physical bodies, I am constantly in awe of the progress that they are making and it makes me so grateful to be able to witness their growth and transformations.

2. Some quiet time to myself

As much as I love being around people, I still cherish my time alone. I got some Thursday, yay!

3. My school buddy Shayna

Shayna and I have been phone buddies for a whole year. She's got my back and I've got hers and I am so grateful that we've been able to keep our Thursday morning dates for so long. It's really amazing that I've been able to bounce ideas off of her and know that I have a constant source of love and support.

4. My bed

I fell into my bed Thursday night and it was like falling into a giant cloud. So perfect and so appreciated for a tired body!

5. A phone call with an old friend

Things don't need to change just because distance separates any of us. It's really nice to know that and not be the only one to feel that way.

Friday, April 4th

1. Patience
2. Being stuck in traffic
3. A short day
4. A working internet connection, finally
5. Good, sincere, honest conversations

I'm finishing up adding in details about why I'm grateful for what I've put on my list. This is a little bit of motivation. Know that writing it down is enough, you never need to explain anything.

I find that gratitude is a strong emotion and never really needs explanation. If someone really asks why you are grateful for something in your life, maybe they really just don't need an answer. Once you've experienced gratitude, the explanation of it will never do it enough justice.

It's a feeling, plain and simple.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Day One

Day one, April 1st:

What am I grateful for today? Other than the usual long list that I keep running over in my head. Here are today's highlights!


This site has saved my butt many a day by keeping me updated on my usual routes to and from work. I can even set them up to hit at different times of the day on the same day! Genius!

2. Chinese food buffets

Yet another reminder and hopefully one of the last that yes, wheat and gluten are not good for my body. I eat the food, my stomach hurts. Great routine but I'm getting tired of it. Then again, I need the reminder every so often.

3. The rain

April showers bring May flowers. I love flowers. I saw daffodils today. I love daffodils. I'm just waiting for the tulips.

4. My purple bed linens

They are so comfortable. Once I'm curled up in them, I don't really want to leave. To make it even better, they're organic. Not the widespread but not really organic, but the for real organic. I don't feel guilty sleeping but now I feel even less guilty for spending more time in bed!

5. Orchid food

While this may seem totally out of left field, my mom and I went to the New York Botanical Gardens on Saturday, March 29th to see the Orchid Show. The whole thing is incredible and I highly recommend going (by the way it closes on April 6th). While we were there we stopped in the Botanical Garden gift shop and found the one thing that I feel my orchid needs to thrive. Yes, I could have picked it up anywhere, but I didn't simply because it wasn't at the forefront of my mind. Seeing all these beautiful orchids for sale made me want to have my own orchid bloom again. I bought myself a slipper orchid which, to me, looks like a rastafarian orchid plant, anyway, I named him Bob Marley. His bloom lasts almost 3 months but then takes him time to bloom again. He's already responding to the food. I'm excited because maybe I'll have another bloom to stare at in my bathroom.

The key is simple things. Simple things keep me happy and it's much easier to be grateful for simple things than to go out and look for big things.

Till tomorrow.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

The Gratitude Experiment

Although it's not quite April, I'm beginning early.

What am I grateful for?

I used to have a really hard time expressing my gratitude but as I've grown up, matured is another way to put it, I've been forced/encouraged to embrace the concept of gratitude as being more than just saying "Thank you."

So, as of today, just before midnight on March 30th, I have many things to be grateful for. Here is today's five.

1. My health.

This is not a cop-out and not one that I will list every day even though it is at the top of my list every day. I find myself more and more knowing people close to me and not that are suffering from some sort of health problem.

The next time I complain that I'm tired, I should just be shown pictures of the many people who didn't even get a chance to sleep the night before. Tough love people, tough love.

2. My friends.

I am horrible at socializing. Well, maybe that's an exaggeration but I am really horrible about being the social butterfly that I secretly enjoy being. I have just gotten myself to the point where I almost feel guilty going out and acting my age when there is just so much out there that needs to be done, solved, helped, etc. Someone remind me that I am not and never will be Supergirl.

Despite all of that, my friends still love and support me. In fact, sometimes they encourage me. Not often, but often enough.

3. My mom.

This is a no-brainer. I am so grateful for her for so many reasons. Today is because she has a lap-top computer that has cookies enabled. I was silly enough to disable the cookies thing on my own computer and now cannot remember how to turn them back on. Hence, I cannot even get to my blog on my own computer.

Silly really. I think I outsmarted myself. I still need to get some writing done, so I'm really grateful that she had the foresight to buy herself a lap-top for the kitchen in the hopes of being able to just pull up the cool recipes she sees on Food Network TV and make them, rather than just paying computer games...

4. My dog.

Even though she has been cranky lately and I know that I push her sometimes into doing things that she might not want to do. Seriously though, just how much can one dog sleep?

She helps keep me in the moment. She demands attention and she doesn't care that I'm in the middle of something that I might deem as "important" because she's really the smarter one.

I can only think about the here and now with her. If I don't, she leaves me a present. You do the math.

5. Patience

I say patience but I mean it in a way that is mostly used with myself. I can't say that I always want instant gratification, but usually I do. I know that I can be patient with my clients, my co-workers, my family and friends, but the minute you ask me to be patient with myself, it becomes close to impossible.


I could not give you a reasonable answer right now, but I'm working on it. I'm learning to take the patience that I have for everyone else and reflect back onto myself. I am so grateful for that lesson.

I could go on and on but then what would I have for the month of April?

This is just the beginning of my point. If we just sat down and thought about it, we could all very easily find 5 things per day that we are grateful for. We could potentially find 10 or 20 things every day. We, however, are programmed to not acknowledge the good in our lives. It's almost like if we see all the good and acknowledge it, then it will no longer be there. Almost like if we admit that our lives are better than we say they are, then we have no chance of ever getting back to that goodness. Make sense?

If not, then just wait for tomorrow.