Disclaimer: this little dimpled cutie is not ours.  We do have cute kids, I’ll admit, but I think we can all agree this one = #futureheartbreaker.  I would have never known this little angel existed without the power of connection.  Connection through cliched terms like family, friends and community.  But break those all down and really think about those words for a minute.

Family.  For instance, this sweet little thing pictured is one of my brother's best friends’ daughters (stay with me people), Lola.  This photo was taken at the Harvest Moon Yoga Festival by Melissa Vaughan where L's mama reached out to me for a flower crown workshop.  The ONLY reason I was lucky enough to do this was because of my family and their unwavering support in sharing in our dream.  And sharing that with the people they know and love.

Friends.  I can’t start because I’ll never stop.  I would accept a challenge (and win, might I add) in a duel of anyone thinking they have better friends than I.  I've had some for decades, others for years, some for months and a few that I get to see for just a few short days per year.  The older I get, the more I put value in the ones who “get” me (and like me anyway)…and I can assure you it has nothing to do with how many “likes”, “followers” or “hearts” my social media accounts get.  

Community.  Sounds lame right?  I used to think so…until I broke it down.  I have no less than 10 communities in my life right now; my work (but I have sub-communities there: co-workers and members, customers and clients), my kids’ teachers, coaches and their little friends’ siblings and parents, our neighbors.  The people I run in to at the coffee shop and the grocery store and the library (ha…just kidding, I don’t go to the library).  The friends and family and acquaintances I run in to at the restaurants and taverns, and at the wakes and funerals and weddings and baby showers and all the other amazing, awful events we go through every day of our lives.  And then that powerful social media crowd…which, in one fell swoop, can rattle your cage or send you soaring through the clouds.

In any case, I am thankful and blessed for all of it.  This is a precious life full of surprises and hopes and dreams and a whole lot of mundane and boring things in between.  On any given day, I can forget all of these wonderful things, but today it's not lost on me.

It’s a new year.  By now my resolution has resolved and I am at peace with that.  (Don’t get your undies in wad, it was just making my bed everyday.  I have been making the same resolution for years.  Maybe 2020 will be my year.  Or maybe we'll start sleeping in sleeping bags.)  It’s been a little quiet around here…and will continue to be until February.  Which brings me to my next point…


Cruisin' south

We are headed south.  Think sun-sand-umbrella drinks and blue oceans kind of south.  And for possibly the first time in my life, I am turning off.  My phones, computers, tablets, social media accounts.  All of it.  It's been a tough few months, some of it self-inflicted (the norm), some from obvious unforeseen events.  Without guilt, I am going to take this time to rest, recharge and restore. 

I often hear people being so hard on themselves and think (or say), "Jeez, give yourself a break."  But, I rarely let the mindless chatter in my head go.  Thinking I should be more than I am, while also preaching to others they are enough.  I am going to try and take my own advice, if only for a week in January.  I can't promise a "new" me when I return, but dammit, I'll be tan.