Tag Archives: gratitude

On being thankful for every moment

3 Apr

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This morning I met a beautiful friend for an early morning swim, at Fairy Bower in Manly.

The dawn sunlight pierced the crystal sea, as waves rocked across reef. Sparkles radiated around us, frightened fish flashed at our feet, and a paddleboarder glided across the horizon.

Salt sizzled on skin as we waded in the cool pool.

In that moment, I was deliriously happy. Grateful that I was alive to see and smell and sense such a special scene.

In 8 weeks, I’m moving to Asia! Vietnam stole my soul, peeled back the layers, and I’m itching to return.

And so I’m making a point to bask in every magical moment while I pack up my life in Sydney. 

The spectacular shoreline. Crisp air. Fresh drinking water. Sunrise over the sea. Quiet streets. Dips at dawn. Gorgeous friends.

We should do it every moment: look for the lining. Appreciate being alive right here, right now. Wish for nothing other than who we are in this very moment.

Will you join me?

 

The nomad’s guide to putting down roots

17 Jan

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I can’t sit still. Seriously. Even in the cinema, I wriggle and sigh and stretch and play with my hair. Two hours sat in the same seat? Gah!

It could be because my family moved house seven times before I was eight. And after relocating to Perth, no sooner did we settle in a space, we packed up and found another.

So I say I never really had a home. Houses, sure – and some pretty cool ones (including one that was DEFINITELY haunted) – but no home. We were like nomadic animals, roaming about with no destination in mind. We simply spotted a better watering hole and set off.

And in the past year, I’ve moved four times. FOUR!

I’m now back at the beach in Sydney. And part of me never wants to leave.

But the nomad in me is already itchy. Already restless. Thinking about far-flung lands, wondering if the other side of Manly might be more exciting, more me. Searching for a better watering hole.

So how can we nomadic souls stay still?

Because we really, really want to sometimes. I’m nearing 30 and should probably start thinking about ‘nesting’.

That’s not to say I won’t travel and explore and jump around. But I want to be in a place long enough to make connections, meet likeminded souls, contribute to the community and build my business.

It’s funny. I’ve just finished reading ‘The Life You Were Born to Live’ by Dan Millman. It uses the Life-Purpose System to calculate your path. My life path number 34/7 is described as struggling to commit. To work through issues of trust and security (the main life purpose for 34/7s), I need to stop flapping about, stay still and put down roots.

How?

Well, I’ve started with daily meditation. And by meditation I mean – try to block thoughts about what I’m going to do the second meditation ends. And ignore the itch on the end of my nose. And stop wondering how I’m going to be still in life when I can’t even sit still to meditate. It’s a struggle! 😉

I’ve also started getting out more, and trying to be more open in public. I’m meeting strangers in cafes – a few of whom have already turned into friends who are on a similar path. I’m reaching out to other business owners on the beaches, just for a chat, not to sell. Or I’m just striking up conversations with people on the beach…many of whom probably think I’m a tad cray cray. (All of this, by the way, is pretty frightening for a sensitive soul!)

And I’m expressing gratitude, in the moment. Like looking out at the water and saying, ‘thank you that I get to look at this beautiful view’. Or ‘thank you that this time I had the patience to actually bake the cake, instead of eating all the batter  and feeling really really sick as a result.’ Whatever works, right? 😉

Who knows if any of it is working. But so far, I’m still.

Are you a nomad? How do you sit still long enough to put down roots? I’d love your help!

Dear Woman. Today is your day.

8 Mar

Dear Woman.

Today is your day.

Today we celebrate how far you have come.

Today we know the struggles you made; the battles you won.

Today we see the struggles ahead; the battles you continue to fight around the world. The peaceful fights – the fight for rights.

Today we honour your integrity; your endless love. It stems from the home and seeps out into your community and wafts around the world.

Today we see your potential. To rise up and shout out for those who do not have a voice.

Today we applaud you for doing two thirds of the world’s work. While earning just 10 per cent of the world’s wages.

Today we thank you for providing us with a home, a haven, a safe house. For filling it with real riches – your heart and your spirit.

Today we recognise the barriers you confront – in the workforce, on the land, in the home.

Today we support you.

Today we stand with you; we walk with you; we hold hands and march forward with you.

Dear Woman.

Today is your day.

Thank you.

 

This post was written for International Women’s Day. To find out more about this ever-important initiative, please click here.

Grateful for a little ball of fluff

5 Jan

Today’s Thankful Thursday post is unusually short on words.

As the saying goes, a picture is worth a thousand of them.

Just looking at this photo makes my heart melt. My smile broaden. My gratitude grow.

This little ball of fluff lives with mum. Hugs mum. Licks mum. Loves mum. Makes mum laugh.

She’s there with mum when I can’t be.

She lifted mum’s heart when it was heavy.

Today (and every day) I am grateful for…

Bella

What are you thankful for today?

‘Tis the season to be thankful

22 Dec

The valley view from mum's verandah.

This is a short post, as I’m preparing to head up to mum’s tomorrow for Christmas.

But I don’t need many words to express today’s Thankful Thursday thought.

I am…

Thankful that I was able to write that paragraph, on a computer that works, in a comfortable, temperature-controlled room.

Thankful that I have a job which allows me to take time out to be with my loved ones.

Thankful that I am in fact paid to take that holiday.

Thankful that my mum is able to live on top of a mountain, surrounded by clouds and eagles and clean air.

Thankful that she has met a man who has renewed her happiness and helps around the house.

Thankful that I have met a man who loves me unconditionally. Even when I cry after too many vodkas. Or roll out of bed with a blonde afro and blobby thighs.

Thankful to God for all these blessings.

Sara from Tis the Life has written a beautiful Thankful Thursday post. You might like to read it and leave a comment.

What are you thankful for this week?

A wake-up call from a windscreen washer

5 Dec

Click image for source link.

On Saturday afternoon, the lad and I stopped at a set of traffic lights in Sydney’s inner west. I was feeling a little glum from a frustrating week and resulting vodka-induced headache. I was indulging in bleak ‘everyone is against me, life is really hard’ thoughts, rather than enjoying a stress-free summer afternoon with my lovely man.

We watched as the renowned local windscreen washer dashed from car to car – as he always did – wearing a vibrant costume and offering a quick wash. Today he was dressed as Santa Claus – albeit a very tanned, thin, pirate-like Santa. The lad waved him over to our car. It was the second time in as many weeks that we had him de-grot the windscreen and handed over a fiver as thanks. As the washer speedily squeegeed the glass, I was struck by the wide grin that wrinkled his sun-spotted skin. He was genuinely happy, even ecstatic to be wiping our windscreen. He squinted as he scrubbed a stubborn spot, determined to remove it. This was one happy man. A man who, even on wild windy and rainy days, or in sweltering heat, stands in the middle of that busy Parramatta Road intersection to scrub windscreens. In every traffic light sequence, he is seemingly waved away 9 out of 10 times. I like being the one who nods.

When he was done, the lad wound down the window and offered the usual fiver. The washer bent down and beamed. ‘Thank you very much! Have I done your windscreen before?’ We said yes. The washer thrust a folded A4 photocopy at us and wished us a merry Christmas, before he whistled and walked away. As the lights turned green and we took off, I unfolded the piece of paper. It was a handmade Christmas card. It read, ‘Dear the driver, Thank you for your contributions this year. From Maurice, your window washer.’

Click image for source link.

I then noticed a small scribbling in the bottom right hand corner of the page. It was accompanied by a grainy photograph of a young girl. It said ‘Thank you – 30c from your donation goes to help this girl in Kenya. $38/month.’

I was floored. Here was a man who, I felt, was really up against it. He seemed to have so little and surely needed (and certainly deserved) every cent that he made. Yet he saw there were people elsewhere in the world with even less. And so he donated the equivalent of my monthly mobile phone bill to help them.

I had just spent an entire week living miserably while eating good food, living in a clean home, drinking fresh water, and wishing I had a different life. One simple, photocopied Christmas card changed all that. It snapped me out of my selfish self-talk. It reminded me that life is precious. That I should never wish for the things I don’t have. That a ‘bad week’ in my life might be another’s dream.

I used to donate regularly to World Vision and Child Fund. Until I re-did my budget and decided I couldn’t afford it (because it would mean cutting down my phone usage or getting fewer manicures). That Christmas card spurred me to take up donating again. And stick with it.

That card made me see that it’s all too easy to frown. Live the life you’ve been given. Live it wholly, authentically and with purpose. Live to give to others. Live to count your blessings. Pass those blessings on to the person who battles wild weather to don a costume and collect a couple of dollars from cleaning a windscreen. Who then selflessly passes a portion of that hard-earned money to a little girl, on the other side of the world, who so desperately needs it.

You can find out more about Maurice the windscreen washer here.

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