My Happiness Project – July edition

Well, here it is. My twelfth installment of #MyHappinessProject. I almost titled this “July- The final chapter”. But it just felt wrong. I have enjoyed these monthly roundups! I have enjoyed thinking back on the month reviewing the photos and reminiscing. So, I am going to keep it going.

July is always a weird month to me. On one hand it feels long. On the other, it’s like you blink and it’s been weeks since we celebrated our Independence Day. I feel like we did so much! Here is just a little highlight of the past few weeks…

On the 2nd we hosted our annual 4th of July picnic

My niece was newly engaged and asked Al to be her maid of honor

We celebrated my sister turning 50 (that’s her in the blk/wht)

The sunsets were spectacular

And yoga on the deck at sunrise was inspiring

Overall, I’d say July has been very good to me. When I started this little project last August, my goal was for it to help me focus on the little things in life. Live in the monent. It has done that and so much more!

I hope you are enjoying your summer! Stop in again soon!

My Happiness Project ~ June edition

How is it the end of June already? I am on vacation this week. It’s a staycation this time around. We have some things to do around the house before our big picnic on the 2nd. But it hasn’t been all work.

We started off with a drive to Central PA to find new towns to explore. Although we have been going out there togetherb for years hiking and Dan has been going there all his life with family, our original plan was less then inspiring. So, since we were near Knoebels Amusement Park, we decided to stop in and walk around. We weren’t there long. It was nice to walk around and reminence about taking Allyson there when she was little. I love the fact that it’s free to get in, pay as you ride, the tickets never expire and it is all surrounded by this:

A great view from above


Our TV died last night so we ran out this morning to get a new one. Although I loved our last one, the new LED TV is even better! Gotta love The Goldberg’s!

Yesterday was all about gardening and we got our wood delivery for the winter. While Dan is preping for the septic tank appointment tomorrow, I got to look back at a few other moments from June…

Sister’s weekend in OCNJ

My niece got engaged to her HS sweetheart

Yoga on the boardwalk

A blues festival with beer and BBQ

And an 80’s tribute band to flash back a few decades

Overall, June has been pretty fantastic. Some things were experiened just the two of us. Other moments were all about family. What more could I ask for?! July is shaping up to be eventful as well! 
Tell me about your month in the comments below. I would love to hear about your happy moments!

What a week!

How is everyone’s June going so far? This has been a week of ups and down. Strange but familiar. Ever have one of those?

I was told what not to wear because I am old. ( not worth linking the actual article but a quick search will give you many other similar fluff pieces )

I say to that:

WearWhateverThe HellYou Want

Give me my leopard print, converse sneakers, bright pink anything and oversized sunglasses. One thing you learn as you get older is to not give a shit what others think, especially about your wardrobe!

I became obsessed with the guilty  verdict,  weak sentencing and public outrage of former Stanford student turned rapist, Brock Tuner.  His name should not even be mentioned again.  I am so blown away by the words of this little dork and his elitist father. What is worth sharing is the letter written by the victim (warning: parts of it are graphic).  WOW.  Her words are powerful.  I got emotional as a mother and got all “Girl Power” as a woman when I read this statement.  Be the beacon of light, dear girl. Be the lighthouse.

A friend received a diagnosis, another leaving her husband, while another friend has an uphill battle of her own. Funny not but funny is that these three women are some of the strongest, toughest chicks I know. I have a gut feeling that they each will come out of their situations even more badass then ever. But still, I send them prayers and good vibes along the way.

I binge watched VEEP S1 & 2 in two days.  Seasons 3 & 4 are not free on Prime yet so they will have to wait. I am not sure if I liked it enough to invest more time on it. Did anyone else see it? Should I keep watching? I have to say I am happy to see Anna Chlumsky in the cast. I have not seen her in anything since My Girl.  I always liked her but did not follow her career. I would say she is one of my favorites on this show.

I was introduced to a new yogi to follow on YouTube – Lesley Fightmaster of Fightmaster Yoga. I did a 30 minute class that focused on a lot of hip opening and flexibility in the back. I am hooked.  I am adding her into my weekend practice from here on out. That is when I have the most time to focus.  During the week, I can add parts that I learn into my personal practice. I am feeling the burn in my sides and core two days later. It’s been a long time since I felt sore from my practice. This new find is just what I needed to move forward where I otherwise felt stuck.

download

And can we talk about this amazing weather? Even though we are still having crazy amounts of rain, the humidity has been low and the mornings are spring like cool. I AM IN HEAVEN!  Considering the AC in my house is total crap, I will take the cool temps all summer long if that is possible.  All my runner friends must be in their glory too! am I right?

Tonight, Dan and  I have plans to hang out with our sister and her husband. We are going to see Rubix Cube ,  our favorite 80’s tribute band!  They are so fun to watch with all their (seamless) costume changes and stage show.  It is a fun night and I recommend you check them out if they come to your neck of the woods.  Oh and did I mention some people dress up for the show?  That’s right ladies and gentleman.  People watching is part of the experience so grab out Members Only jacket, Wayfarers and lace gloves and entertain me!

It’s time for me to get ready for night so I gotta run! I hope you all have a fabulous weekend!  Make memories people!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Where was I? My Happiness Project ~ May

So last time I was here, we were having coffee and discussing life. Several weeks have past and I have had a lot of time to reflect on things.

Grandma made it back safely to her home in Florida where her son and extended family are doing everything they can to make life easy for her.  The northern Long clan is happy that she has support down there.

I had felt that my doctors appointment on the 16th went very well.  I was left with hope that I would get answers for the weight gain, tiredness and other issues that have left me less then myself.  My new doctor took the time to listen to everything I said. “We will get to the bottom of it!”  was her response.  In reality, I was told everything looked good (thankfully) but to take B12 and call if things get worse.  Otherwise, there is nothing to do at this time. Sigh….Honestly, I was going to just take it anyway before going for blood work but I caved to peer pressure.  This is the exact reason why I don’t use doctors. I always feel like going is a big waste of time. Rant over. Thank God I have my yoga to keep me sane. Breathe in the good. Release the bad.

image

The weather finally turned to summer! We totally skipped spring this year.  Having the sun up and 60* weather by 6:00AM is my silver lining. I freeze in my office every day so I am loving the act of throwing my hair up in a big bun, opening the sunroof/windows in my car, cranking the radio and singing loudly.

image

This is the total mood changer for me. It is time to find myself again. I think I started to lose myself in the rain and aches and pain.  Maybe all I needed was the feel of warm sun on my face.

It’s Memorial Weekend. Time for outdoor BBQ’s with family. This is one of my favorite weekends of the year. My family means everything to me. Each year the dynamic changes. For some it’s a new divorce. For others it’s a new baby to celebrate. It is always nice to catch up with everyone even if it’s just for a few hours until the next time we see each other again. Sure, there is Facebook and other social media to stay in touch. But there is nothing better then sharing a meal and laughing together.

The weather it beautiful. The birds are singing. My lilac bush is sending it’s sweet scent in through my front door. As I sit here listening to the world around me, I give thanks for what I have. I remember those who came before me. I silently thank those who fought to secure my freedom and protection of this beautiful country that we live in. Even though I know I am hard on myself at times, I forgive myself and I am grateful for being surrounded by so much love and light of so many amazing people in my life.

image

I wish you all a happy and safe Memorial weekend.
Namaste 💟

Ultimate Coffee Date – May

Hello beautifuls! I am teaming up for another coffee date with Deborah, Coco and Lynda.  Thank you for having coffee or tea with me while we chat and catch up.

Ultimate-Coffee-Date-Badge-e1416682466503

If we were having coffee… I would tell you about our weekly visits with Dan’s grandma.  She lives in FL most of time but has been in PA with her one son since late autumn 2015.  Even though they are “close” is was not close enough to see her often.  She is currently floating between rehab facilities within an hour from our home healing from a broken shoulder she suffered in a fall.  It’s unfortunate that this is how we get to see her.  But we are making it a priority to visit 1-2 times a week.  She just got the news that she is healed and can go home real soon. We would like her to stay in PA but she is home sick for FL.   At her age, 96, we just want her to be happy living out the rest of her life where she will be comfortable. She still has a sharp mind and we will miss her stories when she does get to go home. We will just have to make a trip down to visit her someday.

If we were having coffee… I would tell you I am starting to have food issues ~ Again. I am not sure if it is sugars or gluten. I plan on doing a total detox next week including alcohol. I am hoping the detox will do a few things: Help me feel better, find the trigger foods that are causing the major bloating/stomach pain  and jump start some weight loss. I see my doctor in two weeks and so I hope we can figure this out.

If we were having coffee… I would tell you that I am glad it is May but frustrated with all the rain and cold temps.  Ok, the cold temps.  The constant rain and lack of sun I can deal with.  But come on mother nature! It’s May!  Can we have some days that get above 65?  My feet are rejecting my shoes and are begging to be barefoot…

If we were having coffee… I would tell you that I am happy with my yoga practice right now.  I am taking a step back and really focusing on my breath and movement.  I am not worrying about progress.  The past two weeks I have really taken things back to basics so to speak and have been loving every minute on my mat.

If we were having coffee… I would wish you a very happy Mother’s Day.  I will be having dinner but I am not sure of the plans yet.  I am leaving it all up to my MIL and sister. Whatever they want is cool with me.  Just tell me when and where!

mothers-day-flowers

If we were having coffee… I would tell you my job is heading into busy season.  So, if I am suddenly silent, you know why.  Life is good but this time of year does not leave much leisure time for posting, reading or commenting.  You’ll see me around though.  I can’t stay away too long!

If were were having coffee, what would you tell me

 

 

My Happiness Project – April

IMG_8213

April has flown by! Work is starting to get busy again gearing up for summer which is craziness for us.  I had a few posts planned but time got away from me.  Life happens and I have enjoyed every second of it!

I have a baby announcement for this month!

Screenshot_20160417-155202

Jacob Patrick was born on April 16th to our step brother and wife.  I have not met the little guy yet but when I do, there will be pictures galore! This one was taken from my MIL’s IPad.

I have owned my Mindful Yoga Wheel for a month now and am slowly learning ways to use it.  One of my yoga challenges this month is all about using props ( Straps, blocks, wheels…).  This month of poses has helped me refocus and go deeper into my practice. Sometimes I feel stuck after doing the same poses and don’t feel progression in them. Typically, I stop doing them for a while and try new things… then I lose all that work.  This is where the wheel and other props comes in. It is helping me find new ways to do “old” postures.

Spring is finally here!  I love how everything has that new, bright green look to it. My allergies are not liking the pollen too much but it’s not a bother when I can look at the pretty trees in bloom!

 

These pictures were taken on Saturday.  Sunday turned out to be a bright and sunny day.  We managed to get out of the house somewhat early so we started off with a walk by the lake.

20160424_113248

By 11:00AM the park was packed with runners, families on bikes, race teams and people in boats fishing. There was even a local photographer set up with props taking Mother’s Day photos. The little kids all dressed up in their fancy dresses and bow ties were adorable!  It certainly was a good day for people watching.

One last thing I am happy about are my new sunglasses!  This is my first pair of prescription sunnies.  I have always had clip-ons or transition lenses but wanted a larger pair that actually blocks the sun.  These are working out better then I ever imagined!  I wish I had done this years ago.

So tell me….

What are you doing to enjoy this amazing spring weather? I know all you runners are in your glory! Am I right?

My Happiness Project – March

IMG_8213

March- I decided March is my least favorite month and I can’t wait every year to have it be over. It’s the hump month between winter and spring. It goes by fast because it is filled with family birthdays and St. Patrick’s Day but it always feels like a dud to me.  My cabin fever really goes into overdrive and I am eager for it to really feel like spring.  I did not do anything huge to talk about. So, I am going to just list quickly what made me happy this month.  I do not have a bunch of pictures and lists make me happy… so here we go!

Things that made me happy this month:

  1. Dinner with the family for my brother-in-law and nephew’s birthdays.
  2. Attending my step-sister-in-law’s baby shower – I think it’s going to be a boy ;0)
  3. Visiting Grandma a lot now that she is in a home 45 minutes from our house.  Sad though that it took a spill and a few broken bones to make these visits happen. We don’t know how long she will be there so we are trying to visit as much as possible.
  4. Spending time with Allyson over Easter weekend even though it was a short visit before she had to head back to school.  She makes me happy any time – visit or not.
  5. Easter day spending it with family. My sister-in-law made the best vegan chocolate cake/pie desert made from black beans.  It was a nice alternative and left overs were tasty with my coffee the next morning.
  6. The warm days at the start of the month.  It was nice while they lasted.  I got to wear my new spring dresses!
  7. All the new spring green growth! I love driving and seeing the new grass and spring bulbs/trees in bloom.

Things I am looking forward to in April:

  1. Dinner with old friends
  2. Hopefully start hiking again.  I need to ground myself with nature all around me!  Or at least do some urban hiking around our town or explore some place new.
  3. Garden and yard clean up begins!
  4. Being more active in general.
  5. Warmer weather and longer daylight hours.

85465-pink_cone_flower-wallpaper

Tell me something that made you happy this month! 

Do you have any big plans for April?