life curation · reading list

What I’m Currently Reading

Happy Saturday! The post is arriving a little later today because I didn’t have much time to write: I was out running errands and the time got away from me!

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I’m popping in quickly to share what I’m reading right now as well as what I’ll be reading through the month of January. Of course, I’m still rereading Write It Down, Make It Happen by Dr. Henriette Anne Klauser. You’ll recall this title from numerous posts on this blog, but most recently I talked about it on this one. I love the book so well that I have both the hardback copy as well as the Kindle version of it. I’m also going to read her books With Pen In Hand and Put Your Heart On PaperI’m kind of surprised that I hadn’t thought to read her other works earlier, but inspiration nudged me to buy them, so I listened and I’m eager for what I’ll learn while reading them.

Additionally, I’m going to read The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron. I’m really interested on how I can best tap into my creativity. I’m hoping that the book will help me on this creativity journey that I’m embarking on in the upcoming year.

I have a book review coming up next week, so look out for that. I’m always reading something, so there’s no shortage of reviews coming your way!

I hope you all had a beautiful Saturday, and I’ll talk to you all tomorrow. Take care!

fitness · life curation

2019 Planning – Health and Wellness

Welcome, Monday! You’ve been gone for a few days but we’re all somewhat glad to see your return!

As I plan for the upcoming year, I’m reviewing the planner I bought a few weeks ago and starting to think seriously about what goals I’m pursuing in the upcoming year. My challenge is to balance my ambition with a little bit of realism. I don’t want to set my goals too high and then end up missing the mark.

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So, I’m taking my time to consider some major areas of my life and set realistic goals that are attainable but still require me to “stretch” a bit. Since I’ve been talking about improving my health since the summer, I figured I’d start with this area.

For 2019, my health and wellness goals are as follows:

  • Learn to swim
  • Take at least 3 dancing/fitness courses that I’ve never taken before
  • Achieve my goal weight
  • Start working with a naturopathic doctor

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My overall goal is improved health and more energy. I know that I can achieve it if I do the work and stay committed. I won’t write a tonabout my health journey – the blog will be taking a more focused turn in the new year – but I will post periodic updates so that you all can keep me accountable.

I’ll have more posts over the next two weeks about my 2019 planning. Look out for those, and I’ll talk to you all tomorrow!

life curation

Making Space Challenge: End of the Year Updates

Happy, happy Saturday! I figured I’d make this last post about the Making Space challenge before the end of the year, because it’ll be 2019 before you know it.

I’m still doing my thing with the challenge. It’s a little easier to “make space” in December because I have more time at home (due to the holidays). When I’m enjoying “down” time, I always start clearing out things and tidying up. That may defeat the purpose of taking time off, but I enjoy it, so that’s that.

However, I also tend to clear out a lot of clutter (in the form of magazines) during this time. Since I create a vision board every New Year’s Eve/New Year’s Day, I need images to paste on it. So, a few weeks before NYE, I start ripping up my magazines, putting the images I plan to use in a folder and throwing out the magazine when I’m done. I also will rip out any articles that I’ve been meaning to read: I challenge myself to read them all before the end of December.

Sometimes I read the articles, sometimes I miss my December deadline. It’s the intention that matters though, right? I always intend to do it, and eventually, the articles get read because ripped out pages don’t age well and I get tired of them holding valuable space in my file cabinet.

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So for the challenge, I’ve been working through no less than 3 magazines a day. At the rate that I’m going, I will have gotten rid of at least 50 magazines by the end of the year. That’s going to create massive space in my magazine bins, and I can start using those containers for something else (yay!)

Are you all making space before the end of the year? Please let me know in the comments below, and if you’re so inclined, take a pic of how you’re making space and use the hashtag #makingspacechallenge or #makingspace so I can see what you’re up to.

Have a great day, and I’ll talk to you all tomorrow!

life curation

Writing Out My Bucket List

After a few weeks of feeling uninspired and restless, I finally started getting back to my “normal”. I’m not 100% back but I’m on my way. As part of my recent burst of inspiration, I started writing out my bucket list.

checklistNow, I’ve done this before (multiple times, actually). But funny enough, I can’t find any of my old copies. I take that as a sign that I need new dreams. NO surprise there: I’ve already accomplished a lot of what I’ve wanted to do (as I mentioned in a previous post).

So I’m starting all over again. And I needed some ideas to help get my creativity flowing. I found this great list on Celestine Chua’s website that has 101 things everyone should try. She also makes this fabulous list available as a free PDF so you can get a printable version if you’d like. Between this list, Write It Down Make It Happen, and this incredible book I’ll be reviewing soon (more about that later), I expect to be absolutely unstoppable next year.

To our continued success! I hope your Monday is happy, productive and everything else you want it to be. Take care, and talk to you all tomorrow!

life curation

Let Inspiration Lead You

Happy Saturday, friends! I recently experienced a major positive shift in my energy, and I wanted to share what happened that turned things around a bit. Now, the positive shift doesn’t mean that things are completely perfect; in fact, nothing is truly perfect in my life right now. However, this shift was powerful enough to give me a significant “push” when I wasn’t feeling inspired to do anything at all.

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Letting inspiration guide you is as simple as letting go

Earlier this week, the word “lagniappe” crossed my mind. Lagniappe is a Creole term meaning “a little something extra”. It’s a little gift or token that may be given for anything or nothing. Usually, little shops in New Orleans (though this might also happen in other parts of Louisiana, I’m specifically referring to New Orleans because I’ve been there) will throw in a little extra gift when you purchase something, or even give you a little token just for stopping by and chatting with the staff for a bit.

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A common sight in many shops in New Orleans – masks with all sorts of fancy designs

I hadn’t thought of the word in years but here it was, on my mind. I just figured that meant it was time to plan another trip to New Orleans (which would be fabulous!) and let the thought pass. I went on with my day as normal and didn’t think any more of it.

Two days later, I went online and read some posts in one of my coaching groups. I saw a post from a member that was unclear on what she needed to do to resolve the issue that she was facing. I thought a writing technique that I first read in Write It Down, Make It Happen by Dr. Henriette Anne Klauser. I flipped through the book, located the technique I wanted to describe to her, and posted my response.

After writing the response, I flipped to the back of the book, right before the bibliography. Right there, in the middle of the page, was the word “lagniappe”. For clarity, Dr. Klauser is not Creole nor does she write about life in Louisiana or anything else related to that part of the world. Literally, the word was on the page, like a beacon, telling me that what I needed was sitting on my bookshelf all along.

I’ve been languishing a bit because my dreams need fine tuning. It’s funny: I actually have almost everything that I want. I’ve spent years getting clear on my desires and successfully co-creating everything that I’ve wanted. I’ve traveled to places that I couldn’t imagine that I’d ever see in person. I’m in my dream field: the one that took me NINE years to get into. My family is healthy and happy, and I earn enough to do everything that I want to do (with proper planning, of course). By all accounts, I’m happy with my life and everything is great.

But my daily passion is lacking. I knew that I needed to get clearer about my art career goals as well as a few other “bucket list” items. I didn’t realize how much being “comfortable” and uninspired could negatively affect me, but now I know. So the next few weeks will be all about getting clear and finding my passion again. Now, don’t get me wrong: I love my life and find a lot of joy in it daily. But my drive was gone because I’ve already gotten so many of the things that I wanted.

I mean, what do you do when you got everything you wanted?

It’s simple: you find new dreams. You get some new goals. You find a new passion because that passion is what keeps us going.

So I’m taking some time to get quiet and let inspiration lead me. I think I know where it’s going to take me: there’s a dream that I’ve been tossing around for a bit, but I needed a little extra clarity on how I’d like for it to look in my real life. So I’m going to reread Write It Down, Make It Happen, spend some time just doing what sounds like fun (because having fun is great for setting things in motion), and allowing my new dreams to reveal themselves to me.

Have you all had to “recalibrate” your dreams? I’d love to hear how you did it: feel free to comment below and let me know how you tapped back into your passion after a period of feeling uninspired.

Take care, and enjoy your Saturday!

life curation

Take This Course Before 2019

I know we’re all excited to start 2019 on a strong note, and I’m all for finding (and sharing!) the tools and resources to make this our best year ever. So, I’m going to do a mini-series called the 2019 Toolkit. This is informal, but as I find things that I think will be useful to you all, I’ll share them here and tag them for your convenience.

I’ve come across this particular course multiple times over the past six or so years, and each time I see it, I’m impressed by the high student ratings and continued popularity. Learning How to Learn, a course available through Coursera, is a powerful tool for setting the tone for 2019 successes. The class is 12 hours of study, so 30 minutes a Day is more than enough time to complete the course by the new year.

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2019 Travel Plans: Looking Back, Looking Forward

Well, as 2018 winds down, I can comfortably say that I’m done traveling for the year. I don’t anticipate going anywhere new until next calendar year, but boy, what a fun year this has been!

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From my trip to Kenya, to road trips to Philadelphia and North and South Carolinas, to my cruise last month, I’ve been a busy girl. And 2019 shows no signs of me slowing down!

I’m finalizing a few details on a late winter trip to San Juan, as well as a late spring/early summer trip to Paris. I was toying around with the notion of attending a very pricey and exclusive class next spring, but I’d rather spend my money on transformative or “bucket list” travel. The class can wait!

Next falls looks like it may include another family cruise and, if not, I’ll be in London for a few days to attend an event I’ve been eyeing. I’m also looking into some additional travel to the Pacific Rim: I haven’t decided on a country yet, but I feel like this region is calling me, so we’ll see where my hankering takes me.

I have to finish reviewing my cruise travel for you all, but once that’s done, I’ll be laser-focused on my 2019 plans. I’m so excited!!!

I hope you all are having a relaxing Monday and an easy transition into this post-Thanksgiving work week. Take care, and I’ll talk to you all tomorrow!