We are all living life, trying to find a balance and searching for happiness. Here are some things I’ve learned to do in order to be happy.
- Make the best of everything. Whatever happens in life, it could be worse. So make the best of it.
- Love yourself. Sometimes we are so busy taking care of others that we forget about ourselves. You need to be full in order to take care of your loved ones.
- Put your electronics away. You need to take a break from all the distractions. You are more likely to find your happy place when you are focused.
- Live in the now. Yesterday’s a memory, tomorrow is a mystery and today is a gift. Which is why it’s called the present.
- Faith. I have gone through so many ups and downs in my life, just like all of you, my faith has carried me through my toughest times. I’m thankful that I believe in a higher power.
- Help others. Do something every day to help someone else. It doesn’t have to be big, even a smile is an act of charity, you never know how it may impact someone’s day.
- Be grateful. Practicing gratitude will help you see all that you have, instead of focusing on what you don’t have.
- Meditate. Take a few minutes every day to sit in quiet contemplation . There are so many guided meditation apps that will make it easy to do. Meditation allows you to clear your mind and relieves stress.
- Diet & Exercise. Eating clean and moving your body is healthy for both your body and your mind. Having a healthy diet will give you more energy and exercise releases endorphins that make you feel good.
- Find a creative outlet. Do something that you are passionate about, or learn something new. It keeps you balanced.
- Surround yourself with positive people. It’s much easier to be happy with people who see the glass half full. And no negative talk, that means no negative self talk either.
- Set goals. Having goals helps you grow and learn and it keeps you on your toes.
- Travel. When you travel you learn so much about people and cultures. Travel allows you to see that we are more alike than we are different.
- Create a community. Keep in touch with your family, aunts, uncles, cousins. Most of my cousins are my best friends. They are a link to your history. Cherish your friends, especially your long friendships, those die hard, steadfast friends are keepers! I’m so blessed to have both old and new friends that I adore. Relationships take communication, time and love. I hope you have people in your life that think you are worthy of their time, because you deserve it.
I wish you happiness.
This is a letter to my daughter,
I can’t believe that you are a teenager! Although I do see some major eye rolling and a lot more time away from the “mommy” you used to be glued to, you’re still the beautiful, loveable you! You will always be our baby.
I want you to know that the day you were born was the most magical day of our lives. God blessed us with the most amazing little girl in the world. You are the most precious gift we have ever received.
You changed our lives forever. You are as beautiful on the inside as you are on the outside. You are an old soul, wise beyond your years. You fill our hearts and our lives with so much love and purpose. I know that whatever you do in life will positively impact the world. Your beautiful heart is filled with love, kindness and compassion. The love and loyalty you have for your family members and your friends always amazes me. We are so privileged to have you as our daughter. While we help shape the person you will become as an adult you have helped us to grow and learn as well. I know you will teach us a lot more as you continue to grow into the beautiful woman you will soon become. Know that love and the bond you shared with your grandparents will sustain you for life. You will always have them watching over you. They were so proud of you just as we are. I know that you will continue to make us proud.
We love you Sophia and wish you the happiest of birthdays. Welcome to your teen years, they go fast, so learn, live well, make the right decisions and always know that your family will be here for you. Remember, God and family first, always, that’s the legacy that is left for you by your grandparents.
I love this manifesto on parenting by Brene Brown and thought that I would share it with you all.
If you want to download the parenting Manifesto..click on this link. Wholehearted_ParentingManifesto (5
And if you want to shop for some pretty gorgeous little girl clothes make sure to visit http://www.ariaandsophia.com
You look at me and you think you see me, you see my smile but did you notice my eyes? You see me calm, serene as the sea but can you not see my ripples? You hear me speak I sound of cheer, but can you not hear my pain?
There’s a part of me that no one sees, its hiding just behind my eyes, pain so deep but no one sees, each day I wonder how bad it will be, I wonder if anyone will ever see. But I see, I feel, it keeps haunting me. Will I ever be free?
This is a painting I recently created. It’s a replica of a picture I found on Pinterest. I usually like to create art I can connect to emotionally. I wear my heart on my sleeve. I often talk before I think and feel both love and pain with deep intensity. When I love, I love deeply. When I lose someone I love I literally fall apart. I am loyal to a fault. It may seem like a good character trait to have but it can sometimes backfire.
The painting depicts both the way I felt while I was painting it and the way that I feel today. It’s a feeling of falling, gently shifting into another phase of my life. Sometimes I am in control, feeling peaceful and quiet with my thoughts and my surroundings. Being in the now and appreciating all that I have. Sometimes it’s a feeling of losing control and direction .Feeling lost and alone. Mostly it makes me feel as if I’m floating into where I am supposed to go. Letting go of what I cannot control and being at peace with life.
How does it make you feel when you look at it?
When we first moved to our home we found some furniture in the attic that was old and we tossed most of it, but some I just liked too much to throw away. This table is one of the pieces that I really liked. The beautiful little girl is my talented apprentice.The table is too dated and doesn’t fit into my décor but I just love its shape and design. So instead of tossing it, I decided to change it up and turn it into an outdoor table.
I thought it would make a great family project and I was right! My little girl and I had a great time painting the table with a white outdoor paint. The paint brightened it up and protected the table from the outdoor elements. We had a lot of fun painting it, although we did get a lot of paint on each other as well, all apart of the fun! We let the paint dry for a couple of hours and then applied another coat. We then let the table dry overnight.
Once the table was dry we used this blue/green tile blend that we found at Home Depot. My husband used pre-mixed adhesive and grout to secure the Mosaic tile onto the table.
Once the tile was secured on the table, we used a wet sponge to take off the excess grout from the tile surface. We then allowed the grout to dry. Because the table is round the edges were a bit off so we got creative by using some small stones we found in our garden to decorate the edges.
Here is the final result. I think it turned out pretty great and it was a wonderful little project to do as a family!
Hope you are inspired to do your own project!
Summer is here and one of my favorite things to do is to spend time in our yard. Admittedly, my husband does all the heavy work. I do the designing and directing. We’ve worked a lot on our front yard but we are far from done, We haven’t done much to spruce up the backyard so now I’m trying to focus on that. I would like to add a bit more color to it. The back is very green and Zen, but it lacks color…other than just the green. My friend, a landscaping designer suggested that I put a bunch of colorful large pots filled with flowers in between the hosta.
One of my favorite places to find design ideas is Pinterest. I found some great looking colorful pots there.
Because my backyard has a lot of shade the best flowers to plant would probably be pansies….that’s according to my artistic friend. Now the hard part will be to find some great inexpensive pots.
I’m also focusing on an outdoor wall that looks a bit empty to me. I don’t necessarily have to do anything with the wall…but I think it’s the perfect place to add a little oomph to the back of our house.
Here are some more great designs that caught my attention on Pinterest. The first one is a frame designed with a bunch of gorgeous Succulents. I can do this with an inexpensive flea market picture frame and a variety of small succulents like hens and chicks and sedum. Looking into how to create this design I realized it takes a lot of work, but it can be done.
The next idea is one that will make my nine year old very happy. All I have to do is to put up a chalk-painted board to the wall so our daughter and her friends can unleash their creativity outdoors. This won’t add color to my backyard but it will bring a lot of fun into it.
Putting up a garden mirror is another great look. This will give the illusion that lawn goes on forever. It’s a really great and easy way to add a bit of beauty to the backyard.A few pieces of wood with a couple of lanterns is another great way to light up the wall. This will make the evenings in our yard brighter and add a nice décor for the day.
There is so much I can do including some art work on some wood, putting up some pots, arranging some colorful bird houses. Take a look at these great designs. I love them all! Decisions, decisions….
I would love to get some input from you folks…what do you think? Please feel free to let me know. In the meantime, I will ponder it all and let you know what I plan on doing. I hope I’ve been able to inspire you to get out and do something beautiful in your yard.
Sonia Singh is an artist, illustrator and scientist in Tasmania. She’s also a woman who is doing something that may change the way little girls see themselves. When Singh was a child she says her mother didn’t let her play with Barbie dolls because of their curvy shapes and overt makeup. She says now she can understand that those are some things that can affect the way young girls perceive themselves.
Our daughters are influenced by celebrities, models and dolls like Barbie. With these unrealistic expectations projected onto them, how are they supposed to feel when they look in the mirror? Looking at Barbie with her unrealistic body and the Bratz dolls with all their overly done made-up faces and inappropriate clothing, you have to wonder if the girls who play with them, believe that is what they are SUPPOSED to look like.
I love that Singh navigated the world of hyper-sexualized dolls and decided to turn them into something that resembles what a little girl really looks like. She recycled, then repaired old dolls to resemble a child.
She uses nail polish remover and erases away their overly done made-up faces. She then uses her artistic skills to make them under with new age appropriate styles.
It gives the dolls a new lease on life and gives young girls something that they can identify with.
I love her idea and her dolls! The recycled dolls are beautiful and ready for little imaginations to take them for an adventure. They are gorgeous dolls that I hope will take flight with mainstream doll manufacturers.
My daughter Sophia thinks the new look is pretty and natural….”just like all my friends” she says. The overly made-up dolls looked scary to her. That’s my girl! See what your daughters say about the make-under look.
You can support Sonia Singh and her work by going to the Tree Change Dolls etsy shop and ordering a set of greeting cards or limited edition prints that features her original photos of some of first Tree Change Dolls. Every month she lists a Tree Change Doll on Ebay with most of the proceeds going to charity.
Want to give your child’s dolls a make-under? If you’re interested Singh has created some DIY videos to show you how. I know I’m going to give it a try.