Rethinking Gratitude

Rob, the kids and I were heading downtown for a family day in the city. As we were driving along Lakeshore Drive, I see this guy riding his bike. As you might be able to tell from the picture, he has no legs. He is racing along with the strength from his arms.

Yes, I have seen this kind of bike before. I have thought about how hard it would be to use. How incredible it is for people with disabilities to push themselves waaayyyy harder than most people that have no disabilities.

But this day reminded me of a book I read about gratitude. (A Better Way To Live by Og Mandino is one of my absolute favorites!- affiliate link) It made me stop and think harder.

I consider myself a grateful person. I write down things I am thankful for. I stop and appreciate moments and people. I try to look at the many small things that make my life happier, better, amazing. BUT…I never think about having legs, my eyes, my fingers.

Think about this….most of us would love to have more money. Who wouldn’t !?!?! I always say how much good I could do with it, if I ever won the lotto! Right?!?! Not even keep it all for myself and my family but share it. Give it to people who need it. Ok now, if we all want more money, how much would you take for your legs? A million? How about your sight? 2 million?

Just as I thought….we wouldn’t take any amount of money for those things. They are true blessings! Then why aren’t we thankful for them everyday if they are that important?

It is so easy to complain about the things we don’t have. Let’s rethink the things we do have…there are so many more than we can ever count. We use our legs everyday and we take them for granted.

I recently read this quote below. Think about it and maybe we can all start being more grateful and appreciative starting today:)

A Little Me Time

I would like to say this happens weekly, but it doesn’t. I don’t always plan enough me time, but when I do, I realize how important it is. It’s my time to reset, refocus, and get away from the chaos of everyday life.

Last weekend, my “me time” was the Notre Dame/Vanderbilt football game in South Bend. Notre Dame campus and their whole football experience brings back amazing childhood memories and is still to this day, one of my favorite things.

This game was particularly special because our friend’s (who both went to ND)son plays for Vanderbilt. We got to experience that special day with their whole family and it was amazing. One thing I am learning is that I NEVER REGRET taking time for myself doing the things that I enjoy.

Another thing I am working on is taking “me” time in moments.

I had to drive Maddie to early morning band practice twice this past week. That means I had to be up, showered, ready and out the door with her by 6:20. Ugh, right?!?!?!

Well, on those car rides, I got great conversation with my 12 year old. Discussed friends, her activities, her goals and even the beautiful morning sky.

All things that never would not have been discussed if we didn’t have that time together. So, I didn’t HAVE to drive her. I GOT some alone time with her:)

Plan some “you time” soon. Look for the little blessings in your busy day to day life. They’re there and they are meaningful. It’s time to appreciate them more.

Make it a great week!


Leading By Example

I just read this poem in a book (affiliate link) I am reading. You can substitute the words for Mother/Daughter too. Here it is….

To Any Little Boy’s Father

There are little eyes upon you, and
they’re watching night and day,
There are little ears that quickly take
in everything you say,
There are little hands all eager to do
everything you do,
And a little boy who’s dreaming of the
day he’ll be like you.

You’re the little fellow’s idol, you’re
the wisest of the wise,
In his little mind, about you no
suspicions ever rise.
He believes you devoutly, holds that
all you say and do,
He will say and do in your way, when he’s
grown up, just like you.

There’s a wide-eyed little fellow who
Believes you’re always right,
And his ears are always open and he
watches day and night,
You are setting an example every day in
all you do,
For the little boy who’s waiting to grow
up and be like you.

-Author Unknown

I just love this. I am not looking at this poem as a way to feel bad for all the things I haven’t done right. We all have those things that we wish we could change. I love this poem as a reminder that everyday we get a chance to make new choices, to handle life’s problems in a better way, to work at being a better role model and to grow from our mistakes.

We do not need to be perfect all of the time. The kid’s see us make bad choices, use the wrong language and say the wrong thing. That is part of life. I think it’s more important to model what to do when those things happen. How to get back up, apologize, do better and be better.

Our kids will follow our example, not our advise. Again, it’s not about being perfect, but it’s how we grow and learn with all of our imperfections. Here’s to a better way to live….one day at a time.

A Happier You In 5 Minutes A Day

If you woke up tomorrow with only what you were thankful for today, what would you have?

This 5 minute gratitude journal has it all! It has inspiring quotes, questions to answer, ways to improve, challenges and affirmations. Writing down what we are thankful for is the most amazing way to see what we already have! Life gets busy and we too often forget these things. Keep them fresh in your mind, then watch your perspective and life change! 5 stars on Amazon with over 1,200 reviews! (affiliate link)

5 Reasons To Food Prep


Food Prep sounds like a big, scary thing to add to your to-do list, but it is not at all. Food prep is just making a plan ahead of time on what you will eat and preparing it. That’s it!

For this bowl, I made a big batch of quinoa in chicken broth. It adds so much flavor that way. Then I roasted broccoli, cauliflower and carrots in coconut oil for 30 minutes. When I am ready to warm it up each day, I add some teriyaki sauce. This made lunch for 4 days and was all real food!

Here is why I choose to do it.

  1. Time Saver– I work from home and need quick, easy meals to eat when I am hungry. I just warm up what I made and it’s ready to go.
  2. Takes the Decision Making Out– I tend to chose unhealthy options when I am short on time and need to make a quick decision. At those times, “pantry foods” usually win out.
  3. Accountability– By preparing healthy food options, I am holding myself accountable for how I REALLY want to eat….not what I want to eat in the moment.
  4. Goals– You know I am big on goals. I placed numerous pictures and goals of eating more vegetables on my vision board. I truly think it’s the best way to eat for me to stay healthy. Adding veggies to my food prep helps me stay on task and work at achieving this goal.
  5. I Eat What I like– Everything that I make is food I like to eat. That is so important. You won’t stick with a diet that tastes bad. You will give it up at some point. I just think of all the foods I enjoy and add them into my plans.

At the end of the day, I can feel good about the way I ate and how I followed through on my goals! Give it a try:) Here are some food prep container options for easy storing or if you are on the go. (affiliate links)

3 Compartment Containers with Lids-

Glass Meal Prep Containers-


Living With A Grateful Heart

I have to tell you….this past week was a bad one. A lot went wrong, lots to cry over and lots to worry about. It’s not fun. These are the times I have to dig deep and be grateful for the things I DO have and the things that are going RIGHT. Focusing on the bad isn’t going to help at all. Here are some of the things I am grateful for this week.

Grateful that bad situations were not worse– I am the only one in my family that didn’t want a dog. Granger is more work than I can handle and most of it is on me because I am home all the time. Even though he is a lot of work, I have grown to love him more than I ever imagined. Anyway, this weekend we were visiting my grandma and were hanging out on a party beach on the Mississippi river. Everyone brings their dogs too. Long story short, Granger got attacked by a Pit Bull. We had to rush him to the Emergency Vet and get the wound cleaned, staples put in and meds to help him heal.

Seeing the kids cry and having them witness this horrible attack is something I don’t want to ever happen again. I am beyond grateful that it wasn’t worse, that one of the 7 kids with us wasn’t hurt and that Granger is ok. He is gentle giant and I feel just awful that this happened to him.  Here he is but I will save you the wound picture. Also, an after the beach picture of the kids (all thankfully safe).







Grateful for time with my Grandma– She is 92! So happy to get some time with her. Pretty sure she lives off of wine and desserts.  Her humor is still on point.  Talk about life goals:)

Joey’s Football– After years of being told that he couldn’t play due to his heart issues, Joey started football. He passed his stress test earlier this month and got the go-ahead. He also scored his first touchdown! Never take these things for granted. There are so many kids that cannot play sports and a lot of us look at it like it’s one more thing to complicate our schedules. I am just so grateful my kids can go practice and play the sports/activities they love! Whether it is one season or years to come, I love watching Joey’s excitement as he plays with his best friend.


Kids are back and loving school- What more can I ask for?

My friends and family– I have so many that are truly there for me.  Life is about the people and experiences we have, not the things. I am soooo blessed.

I am choosing to live this week with a gratefully heart for the things I do have instead of only focusing on the things that are not so great. I hope you will join me and make it a great week full of gratitude.