Day 724

1. Learning a genius trick at the grocery store.  Instead of getting into a power play with a two-year-old, one clever mom asked her daughter, “Lily, where are your knees??”  Since Lily couldn’t touch her knees when kneeling on them, she turned around and sat her bottom on her seat so that she could show her mom her knees.  Tricky mama; smart mama.

2. Seeing a friend who wants to spread positivity in her own pretty way.  Love it.

flowers

3. Continuing to be amazed at precisely how “tuned in” the puppies are to my energy.  They completely understood that I have felt like crap for the past four days,and they behaved accordingly.  (I was treated to snuggles and low-key behavior.)  Now that my raging headache is gone and I can stand without being dizzy, the puppies are being more energetic in turn.  Incredible.

Jojo is in front; Charlie is in back.

Jojo is in front; Charlie is in back.

A close-up of Mr. Jojo.

A close-up of Mr. Jojo.

Charlie awake and chillin'.

Charlie awake and chillin’.

Stef

Day 723

1. Napping with fresh air blowing on my face.  Ma Nature is blessing us with beautiful weather late into October.

2. Reading a very witty online post from a very down-to-earth guy (and his puppy).

3. Seeing Christopher Walken read a fairy tale.  Hilarious.  

Nature and humor are both very healing.  This nasty cold doesn’t stand a chance.

Stef

Day 721

1. Being able to do my job well even when I don’t feel well.  I appreciate the skills I have cultivated over the years, and I’m grateful that my job isn’t physically demanding so that I can perform it even when my body is ill/injured.

2. Hearing the puppies crunch-crunch through piles of leaves on our walk this afternoon.

3. Seeing a terrific video mash-up about women and voting.  It’s a great yesterday-meets-today clip – and is just as powerful now as it was 50 years ago.  

you-dont-own-me-psa

Stef

Day 720

1. Working with top-notch individuals.  The brainpower I am surrounded with daily deeply impresses me, and the sheer volume of work my colleagues produce on a regular basis astounds me.  I work with some rock stars!

2. Being with a friend who trusts me enough to be authentic and vulnerable.  I treasure relationships where the other person and I can be raw, and we know we will each still be liked and cared for.

3. Last week a person in my work area said a word that I had never heard before (which is very rare for me; I have a semi-impressive vocabulary [compliments of my 9th grade English teacher, Mrs. Hatton]). The word is a rather ‘niche’ one, so I doubted I would encounter it again – but this afternoon, I was listening to an audio book where the author used that very word!  Absolutely kooky.

humble

Stef

Day 719

1. Upon hearing that I was *really* tired this morning, my yoga teacher chose to lead the class through a slightly easier routine than usual.  We got to do more flexibility poses and fewer balancing ones – which felt terrific in my body. 

2. Leaving the city, I saw a young aspiring ballerina getting professional pictures taken in various urban settings.  The contrast of a ballerina on pointe against a steel bridge was pretty darn interesting.

3. Seeing my new slippers, my sweetie asked me what happened to my old ones.  When I told him, “They got a hole in them,” he responded, “Oh that’s very sad, dear Liza, dear Liza, oh that’s very sad, dear Liza, that’s sad” – to which I laughed out loud.  Nearly every day my husband makes at least one of these completely unexpected random-yet-relevant comments – and they all make me smile.  His kooky, creative mind is a wonder to me…

Stef

(P.S. If you want an evening of smiles, just search for “Sesame Street” on YouTube.  Adult humor neatly packaged for children; this cast and crew were decades ahead of their time…)

Day 718

1. Having free and open access to election candidate information.  I don’t take my right to vote for granted, and deeply appreciate that I can learn relevant information about potential future representatives so easily and thoroughly.  Thank you community journalism.

2. Attending a local semi-professional theater production with my sweetie.  While the performance was just “okay”, I always feel good 1) spending time with my sweetie, and 2) supporting local arts/artists.  

3. Seeing a brief video clip that had me laughing out loud.  Many approaches to combating fear and discrimination exist; but oftentimes humor is one of the more effective ones…

Stef

Day 717

1. Unexpectedly seeing one of my good friends at the salon today!  She works on Fridays, but took the day off to pamper herself – and was just leaving the stylist’s chair as I was arriving to occupy it.  Kooky!  (And very cool.)

2. Having my hair cut by a very personable stylist.  Today was our “first date” (her words), and she took care to listen to me, then explain what she envisioned, then encourage me throughout the cut and style that I absolutely can recreate the look at home she so skillfully crafted in the salon.  (“Just relax and don’t try to make your hair perfect.  See how casually I dried and curled it?  I made it look very easy, because it is.  You should spend time enjoying your life, not doing your hair!”)  This is my kind of woman.  :)

3. At the end of the appointment when I pulled out my wallet to pay for my service, the stylist informed me that the salon accepts cash or check.  All I had in my purse was a credit card.  (Plus $10 in emergency cash – but that wasn’t going to cover the bill.)  Oops.  I sheepishly looked at the stylist, but before I could say anything, she pulled a blank envelope out of a drawer and addressed it to herself.  She handed it to me, and simply said, “Just mail me a check when you get a chance this weekend.  It’s no big deal.”  A business woman who takes IOUs?? That action sealed the deal for me.  Incredible.

This image of the interior of the salon doesn't do the space (or the experience) justice; it felt very homey and comfortable.  Good stuff all around.

This image of the interior of the salon doesn’t do the space (or the experience) justice; it felt very homey and comfortable. Good stuff all around.

Stef

Day 716

1. Serving as a guest speaker at a college course.  It was fun to share some information about the business world with undergraduate students.

2. Getting to enjoy the college environment for a few hours without having to do all of the studying, paper writing, and test taking.  I loved school – but now that I’ve been away from it for a while, I also love not being in school.

3. Perusing a toy catalog (included in the newspaper that was delivered to our home), and recalling how I played with some of the same toys currently being sold to kids these days.  Sweet memories.

One of my very first toys.  This bad boy was METAL (not plastic); definitely a safety hazard, but SO fun push around the house.

3-4 years old: One of my very first toys. This bad boy was METAL (not plastic); definitely a safety hazard, but SO fun push around the house.

5-6 years old: Swinging and spinning were preferred past times; this toy fit that bill beautifully.

5-6 years old: Swinging and spinning were preferred past times; this toy fit that bill beautifully.

7-8 years old: The EZ Bake Oven produced cakes that tasted like sweet flour bricks; but it was a LOT of fun to make "real" food in a toy.

7-8 years old: The EZ Bake Oven produced cakes that tasted like sweet flour bricks; but it was a LOT of fun to make “real” food in a toy.

9-10 years old: "Transformers… Robots in disguise."  I had this exact Transformer (among others); but this one was my favorite because my dad drove a VW Bug, just like this guy was.  (My dad's car was blue, but still - close enough.)

9-10 years old: “Transformers… Robots in disguise.” I had this exact Transformer (among others); but this one was my favorite because my dad drove a VW Bug, just like this guy was. (My dad’s car was blue, but still – close enough.)

Stef

Day 715

1. Being just the “right” amount of busy at work.  Enough tasks and to-dos to keep me on my toes, but not so many that I felt overwhelmed or overly stressed.  A healthy balance.  

2. Having a partner to help me with the various issues and items that life (and Life) can serve.  [I love you babe.]

3. Remembering random quotes from The Princess Bride.  What a great movie.  (“They only say ‘never’ because no one ever has.”)

princess bride

Stef