Tag Archives: new year

Be Living Lavish (not lacking a thing!)

Lavish luxurious living.

Not lacking a thing.

Could you imagine it?

Really?

I am living it!

Truly!

My mind has shifted from living in lack, in scarcity.

It has moved into a place of abundance, of lavish luxury!

I have realized that I have everything I need, in this moment.

I am listening, looking, learning and living as I talk about in my book, “I Am Free!” 

Inside and Out!

I previously believed,  I never had enough time or that time was ‘slipping’ away.  My lists seemed endless and my priorities were blowing in the wind by others visions for me.  I was flitting here and there trying to get things done and make up for “lost time”.   Now I know that I create my time and I have enough each day.  I enjoy and savour moments throughout the day.  The moments create a beautiful life.  I know that I have enough time.

FAITH! (not lacking faith!)

IMG_7397[1]

Before, I would worry about spending money $$$$, didn’t enjoy spending it nor never thought that we would ever have enough.  I budgeted, spreadsheeted, pondered and prayed about how to make our finances “work”.  Now I know that we can create the financial future that we want by being awake to how we are spending money, by saving practically and enjoying the journey along the way.  I now find money EVERYWHERE and my boys do too!  It is fun to see how this currency we have created is coming our way.

FINANCIAL FUN! (not lacking a cent!)

IMG_6615[1]

I used to think, that I was a border collie when it came to relationships.  My role was to herd everyone together and to make sure that everyone was okay.  I would endless reach out to people and communicate in a way that I thought would “make things better” by often listening to gossip or by saying I am sorry are just a few examples.   I now know that I am a loving, strong woman with a wonderful tribe of people surrounding me, with their own personalities and traits.  Everyone is responsible for themselves.  I no longer am responsible for the herd, but choose to enjoy those that are attracted to my golden retriever personality.

FRIENDSHIP (definitely not in lack here!)

IMG_5547[1]

I am humbled to admit that before I never thought that I could do enough. EVER!  I ALWAYS felt that I was at fault if something went wrong. I ALWAYS felt that I was never able to meet anyone’s standards, even my own.  It was pressure, my friends, pressure to perform to the MAX.  I rarely rested.  I never let my mind sit, afraid of the lengthy to-do list that would push my face down into the pavement.  I now know, that I am enough.  I am doing enough, each day, with my gifts and imperfections.  I ALWAYS know that I can add value to people.  I ALWAYS feel freedom just to be.  My mind can sit and I often find myself lying down on the ground in awe of the divine moments that come my way!

FREEDOM (soooo much freedom)

IMG_6562[1]

What are the possibilities for you to move from lack into lavishness?  Is it related to your thoughts on food, friends, exercise, sleep, sex, communication, spirituality, writing…?

As we enter the season of the new school year, may we all move into a place of lavish luxurious living!  This is my hope for everyone who reads this post!

SMOOCH, Joanna

Be Knowing What DRIVES You!

Have you ever wanted something so bad that all you could do was talk about it, think about it, dream about it?

Perhaps you wanted a pony as a child.

Maybe it was to make it to the Olympics.

I wonder if it was thinking about getting married.

What was that “something” that just drove you into perpetual conscious and unconscious thought which caused you massive action?

This morning it started with a question from a personal development course that I am doing: What drives people?

IMG_1624[1]

Luckily I have an inner circle that is very tolerant of my philosophical questions coming out of thin air, so I started by texting one person.

Princess P ended up saying: “People that I love and enjoy, nature, adventures… Celebrations and traditions power me.”

Next I texted another person, Dr. K to hear what she had to say: “Before coffee: coffee”. (I must admit that I get up so early and excited for each day that I forget people may still be sleeping.)  After coffee, she text back and said, “Health and Happiness”. And then Dr. K asked her mom and she said, “Live in the moment and look to the future… not stuck in the past with regrets.  Also strive for excellence not perfection.”

Then I texted a few people more because I was oh so curious.  I love PEOPLE and I loved hearing what drives them.

One friend shared that she was contemplating this exact question.

Awesome A shared, “Creating a loving home for my family.”

Double D (the one who keeps giving me back my hat!), said, “My family” and

RvZ said “Work, play, laughter, kinda combo. Achievement. Getting stuff done. But the days that I spend in nature are pretty top.”

When you have great conversations like that all day long and ponder such a question like “What drives you?” the answers come clearly.

What drives me?

Harmony.

Freedom.

I seek harmony in the world around me through relationships, nature, and within myself.

I move towards freedom to be my authentic self, freedom poured out for others to be exactly who they are, time and financial freedom for my family and friends.

What drives you?

Here is my “drive” story for today: Before dinner, my boys, spied a digger down end of our road.   They had this incredible drive to go and see this digger.  The talked about this digger and wondered why it was there throughout the entire dinner. They ate without complaint and then they were off out the door without a word, just so that they could get an eye on this digger.

Drive.

Target.

Success.

The boys reached their target!

IMG_1625[1]

Our brain is a cybernetic system and unless you pick a target, your unconscious brain will choose something for you.   Think about these three boys and yourself as a child, what drove you?  What did you love to talk about, think about, dream about?

Today, why don’t you find what drives you and then choose the target?

Go for it!

You “Cann” do it.

Be Hitting the Targets I Set!

One of the best hockey players in the world, Wayne Gretzky, was once quoted as saying: “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take!”

Before I wasn’t even in the game.

I was working very hard.

Going no where.

I was floating.

Listening to all the chatter around me.

Now, I am listening to the still inner voice inside of ME.

In my life right now I am taking a TON of shots.

Saying “yes” to new opportunities.

Being open to the possibilities.

Allowing myself to feel deeply and go deeper still.

This week, I was on the phone with M, someone that I have known for almost ten years… She is twenty-something and she is a FORCE.

I was sharing with M my last sixteen week journey of setting goals and achieving them.

Here is a photo of this first journey:

IMG_1558[1]

Now after a very fun sixteen weeks of achieving many goals, I was in a quandary. Weight loss is no longer one of my MAJOR goals.  Hmmmmm… Now what?  I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do with this second challenge and I expressed my ‘unknowing’ to friend/business partner.

Later in the day, she send me her ideas via text.   My ‘unknowing’ brought out a ‘knowledge’ in her that profoundly helped me and spurred me on.  Isn’t it awesome that she even thought of having “party tricks” as a goal!!

IMG_1531[1]

Here is what I came up with because of her awesome inspiration:

IMG_1566[1]

And here is me getting started to see where I am at: (It wasn’t pretty!)

IMG_1597[1]

4 push-ups (the last one was with VERY shaky arms)

No chin-ups (I could barely hang there for 2 seconds)

And NOW I am off moving towards the targets that I set for myself.

The ULTIMATE goal is to be the healthiest ME and live the most energetic, positive-infused days of my life with my brood of boys, family and incredible circle of friends.

Be Treading Water 

When you’re in the middle of the ocean, when you can’t seem to find a place to set your foot or something to grab onto, the best thing you can do is just tread water.



Keep your head up. 

Kick your legs.  

Move your arms around and around and around.

It’s pretty hard to notice the beautiful bird that flies by or the duck-shaped cloud above your head when you’re treading water. You can’t see the beautiful turtle swimming underneath you.  

It’s also difficult to have the person treading water beside you telling you what to do or give feedback.

The very best thing you can do, is just be with them. 

Try to find a rhythm. 

Ask God to be with your friend.  

Try to encourage them. 

Ask God to help you. 

Try to deal with your own thing you have going on.

Most of us are treading water in our daily lives.  

Over scheduled.  

Stretched in our finances and head over heals in debt. 

Always striving for more and better.  

No time to be with your chosen partner in a meaningful way, as the details of life almost push you over. 

Unable to attend to your children’s  needs because imagine how hard it is to tread water with a child holding onto you? 

We are really unable to do or see anything except the water enveloping us.  

I have treaded water during my November midterms in my first year of University.   To say that I coasted through high school, would be a mild understatement.  

I barely had my head above water my first year of teaching in a wonderful country school one hour away from my home.  

My body and mind were working hard when I had our firstborn son and caught mastitis.  I now joke that this should be a weapon of mass distraction.  Forget bombs, mastitis would level the strongest man.  

And now I have just come out of a season of treading water in the waves of grief.  A year and a half ago we moved cities, the day after this move my mom was diagnosed with cancer and we watched her die five months later.  Many relationships I had also died during this season. 

Now, I can finally really see and feel what is going on around me.  Isn’t hindsight wonderfully freeing? 

I now feel very deeply for those I see treading water around me.  

I don’t have much to offer but I do know what has helped me.  

Let go of the non-essentials.   What do you really need in your life? 

Lean in to those who love you.  Who accepts you for who you are and love you unconditionally?  

Hold on to memories made and to be made.   Can you look at old photos or picture a future holiday in your mind? 

Move you body in some way every day.  What gets your heart beating and legs moving? 

Eat to be fit, not for feelings.   Do you like to stuff your feelings with food?  I did and it didn’t make me feel any better.  

Hold on.  

Strap yourself in.  

God is the ‘Life preserver’. 

Ask Him for help, for wisdom and for guidance on the path of life. 

You are not alone.  

You were wonderfully created. 

In the messiness of life, your imperfect ways are a gift.  

Let go of perfection.  

Let go of the vision that your home will look like an one hour fixer-up reality tv show and your body like the cover of a magazine.  This is not real life! 

Give what you can.  

Be where you are.  

Be who you are. 

Be enough.  

One.  

Day.  

At. 

A. 

Time.  

Be Skiing Through Your Grief

Grief is very personal.

I would love there to be a recipe for grief to follow or a ‘how-to’ book.

But nope.

No recipe.

No book.

Just living each moment.

Feeling the emotions.

My dad is choosing to cross country ski through this month of grief.

2015/01/img_8179-0.jpg
January has thirty-one days.

He has skied twenty-seven days.

Each day.

Getting up.

Getting out.

And skiing.

For a total of ONE HUNDRED AND SEVENTY- TWO kilometres this month.

One kilometre at a time.

2015/01/img_8180.jpg

Be Skiing Through Your Grief

Grief is very personal.

I would love there to be a recipe for grief to follow or a ‘how-to’ book.

But nope.

No recipe.

No book.

Just living each moment.

Feeling the emotions.

My dad is choosing to cross country ski through this month of grief.

2015/01/img_8179-0.jpg
January has thirty-one days.

He has skied twenty-seven days.

Each day.

Getting up.

Getting out.

And skiing.

For a total of ONE HUNDRED AND SEVENTY- TWO kilometres this month.

One kilometre at a time.

2015/01/img_8180.jpg
Every day.

Making a choice.

To ski through his grief.

I love you dad!

Be Rolling, Jumping and Balancing

What do you personally think every human being should know or be able to do?

For Sexy Neck and I, we believe it is essential that our boys learn how to move their bodies safely.

Thus, gymnastics is a priority for our schedule and our budget.

Man, it isn’t cheap!

As we move into our winter activities, we say goodbye to our autumn gymnastics class.

Thank you for teaching our boys to balance, hop and roll.

I wonder if we made gymnastics mandatory for us all, what would our Western-living lives look like?IMG_7482

Be Having a Snowy Epiphany

More snow than in over seventy years.

First ‘snow’ day school closures in over forty years.

Days of snow falling.

Big thick snowy flakes pouring from the sky.

Great memories with friends and the three brothers playing together.

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/491/14178302/files/2015/01/img_7950.jpg
Hours upon hours of creativity and outside snow time.

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/491/14178302/files/2015/01/img_7952.jpg

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/491/14178302/files/2015/01/img_7953.jpgIt has been a monumental Epiphany.

Nope, no epiphany for me today.

Another kind of Epiphany.

We are celebrating the twelfth day after Christmas that symbolizes the three wise men arriving from the East to worship the newborn King, Jesus.

Here’s the boys Epiphany play:

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/491/14178302/files/2015/01/img_7972.jpg
The wise men have spent the last weeks traveling from a faraway box land arriving in our bookshelf stable in Bethlehem.

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/491/14178302/files/2015/01/img_7936.jpg

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/491/14178302/files/2015/01/img_7935.jpg
We created three ice candles and placed them in our front yard, which is coincidently (or not) to the East of our home. We didn’t realize this was the East until JC pointed it out.

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/491/14178302/files/2015/01/img_7958.jpg

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/491/14178302/files/2015/01/img_7957.jpg
Sexy Neck read about the three Wise Men and we eventually talked about how we both came to know God personally in a private manner.

My beginnings with God began, coincidently, with a writing journal in my bedroom and for Sexy Neck, he came to know God through snow. Another coincidence?  Hmmmm….

It was a privilege to celebrate Epiphany today and it is an even larger privilege to know a personal God where snow is the gift of “Epiphany”.

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/491/14178302/files/2015/01/img_7955-0.jpg

Be Alive (2014)

Being alive is not only the opposite of being dead.

Being alive is also ALERT and ACTIVE

Alert.

Active.

In the last year, my life has being painfully touched with the cycle of life and death.

I have tasted the acidity of death.

I have reflected on the sweet life lived by my precious mom.

As I think about 2014, which started five days after my mom’s death, I am acutely aware that my year could have been different without the prayer of my “people”, the presence of some very wise souls and my brood of boys that surround me.

I would not have survived without these “Saints”!

IMG_7913[1]

(Yup, that’s me on the right after our workout!) 

With my whole heart, mind and soul, I want to shout:

I am ALIVE.

I am ALERT.

God is ACTIVE all around me.

Working things out for His good.

Helping me see His ways.

Allowing me the privilege to taste life anew.

Savouring each workout with incredible women in His creation.

Doing things for the first time, things I thought I would NEVER do.

Enjoying every moment with people I love and adore.

IMG_7914[1]

I am grateful to be ALIVE.

Be Having A Significantly ‘New’ Normal Day

I have had an incredibly encouraging and heartfelt day with many new ‘God’ moments. I am full of gratitude. I feel ready to come back to the blogging world to reach out and share this journey once again.

God has been revealin Himself to me through lying down, rest, coincidences, nature (especially sunsets), His word, music, memories and now through simple everyday living.

He is alive.

I am back!

Renewed and new.

Hurting and humble.

Grateful.

🌀 Last night, I had my first dream about my mom. She told me she was going to travel around the world with her friend Sherry and my dad’s friend Oscar. (No idea why these two friends came up… but I have incomplete understanding of many things these days.)

🌀 A friend, A, sent me this book:

20140203-150103.jpg(Note the butterfly on the cover. A gift from God just for our family?)

🌀 I saw a friend’s daughter walking down the road. Another great gift as I am mourning never seeing my people from Vtown on a daily basis.

🌀 CC decided to take his Nana toque out if the bag that I gave out on December 21st.

20140204-103759.jpg

🌀 A new friend shared that her close friend’s two year old son died in his sleep. I cried with her and was able to recommend some good grief books.

🌀 For the first time, I noticed that a card that my friends sent from Vtown had butterflies all over it. Butterflies have become very significant for our family around my mom’s death.

20140203-191523.jpgThe card has been sitting above my sink but I hadn’t even noticed the butterflies.

🌀 God gave me this word from a bible study I have been doing:

“Forget about what’s happened. Don’t keep going over old history. Be alert, be present. I’m about to do something brand new. It’s bursting out, don’t you see it?”(Isaiah 43:18-19)

🌀 I have finally decided to open the Christmas gift my mom bought for me, wrapped for me and wrote a tag on all while enduring cancer. I am full of gratitude.

20140203-150853.jpg

I feel newness in my journey. I sense God has given me new eyes to see with my heart. I feel a deepening. I wonder what all of this newness will entail.

Wallpaper.

Words.

Helping cancer patients.

Holidays.

A new policy for doctors.

My people.