Be Happy Anyway

Be Happy Anyway
From Brave Girls Club

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

We Continue to Reflect

Wow, it's July and I have managed to stay focused enough to stick with something and not drop out. I would say that is something new and different for me. My friends and I are still reflecting on our words and continuing on this journey together. Come share the journey with us.


“Discipline is remembering what you want.”
David Campbell

“Discipline is the bridge between goals and accomplishment.”
Jim Rohn

“Discipline is the refining fire by which talent becomes ability.”
Roy L Smith

“Endurance is one of the most difficult disciplines, but it is to the one who endures that the final victory comes.”

My daughter epitomizes the definitions of discipline described above. She has working since September towards the goal of attending the Showcase National Dance Competition. By setting an achievable and measurable goal, she was able to see that dream come to fruition this past weekend.

Caitlin spent several hours a week attending ballet, tap, jazz and technique classes without complaint. Additionally, her instructors would call weekend rehearsals.

What was the result of all this work?

Two amazing performances and two platinum awards. Which just goes to show that when you have the necessary discipline, you can achieve just about anything.

Excellence by Octamom

As we hit the completion of half of the year, I find myself amazed that July is right around the corner. Four blog friends and I started the year by each choosing a word that would be our guiding beacon for 2009 and at the end of each month, we have each posted something about how that word is shaping our year.

My word for the year has been excellence. When I selected this word, I thought it to be the element would wind its way through many of the areas in my life in which I seek to grow and improve, in my relationships, homemaking, schooling, writing, photography and walk with the Lord. To pursue excellence has become a lesson in degrees. How does one know when they have achieved 'excellence'? It's not really a destination or accomplishment, but rather an approach and attitude toward the duties and desires in life. And one thing that has emerged as I have pursued excellence this year is that it can be practiced in the smallest things. In my world right now, with so much of my time joyfully captured by the needs of small children, big goals could be frustrating. But to know that I can exercise excellence in making a bed, wiping a nose and reading a book to a child allows me to honor my New Year's goals without creating frustration and overwhelm, which is a very excellent thing indeed.

Abundance by AVTCoach

I have been blessed to be attending a Yoga class three days per week. Through this class I have also met some amazing women. One of the women, a new friend has added so much to my life in only a few months. We enjoy a nice cup of chai on Sat. morning after our yoga class.

The first weekend in June we went on an overnight trip to a retreat center about 40 miles from our town. We stayed in an old farmhouse. Here is the abundance of this 24 hour time away. A glass of wine on the front porch, talking, watching the sun go down, watching the three new young alpaca's recently adopted by our retreat center owners, sharing again a viewing of the movie Chocalat while of course eating dark chocolate and sharing another glass of wine and talking. Feeling the morning breeze flow through the windows upon awakening in the morning, and taking turns getting a massage by a massage therapist who came to our farmhouse with table in hand..and talking. Enjoy an organic salad then taking a nap just because we can..and talking. It was a gift we gave ourselves and the shared experience was truly abundant. It is not easy to take the time to break away from old habits and do something new. We did it and we are only blessed beyond measure. Thank you Cris for our girl time away.

Abundance is.. sharing new experiences with a trusted friend.

Balance Peggy (Miruspeg)

6 months, 26 weeks, 181 days, 4,344 hours......four Americans and one Australian united together believing by focusing and reflecting on our tools called words our journey would become clearer.

For me, without a doubt the journey so far has been very rewarding. Who would have thought that by focusing on a few simple words (Balance, Desire, Persistence) they would grant me so much power and freedom.

This month I would like to reflect on finding balance in the midst of life’s ups and downs.

In life there will always be ups and downs. When something negative happens, instead of agonizing over it or trying to oppose it, we should accept it and try to turn it into a positive. Similarly, when positive things happen in our life we need to be prepared for the fact that good things can’t last forever.

Instead of wishing for a life of complete happiness where nothing bad ever happens, these ups and downs should be embraced, because they are what gives life its colour and meaning.

In Taoism it is believed that the entire universe is a balance of opposites, symbolized by yin and yang (day and night, winter and summer, male and female, life and death, etc).

Roban is the final piece of the puzzle we call our friendship.

JOY. Amazing how such a small, simple word can make such a huge impact in your life (when you let it!). Acknowledging the joy in my life has been one of my goals this year. By focusing on the word “joy,” I hoped to leave worrisome thoughts behind as I looked for those proverbial silver linings instead.

For me, finding joy is really about slowing down to enjoy the moments that make up my life. It’s about stopping the thoughts that whirl through my mind long enough to truly enJOY what life has to offer.

As I focused on this word, I began to recognize joy all around me. I saw joy in a baby’s smile at the grocery store, in the words of a student, and in my daughter’s unique way of seeing things. I found joy in a rare March snowfall and in the serenade of cicadas and frogs on a warm summer night. I found joy while cooking meals for my family and when treating myself to a few good books.

I have found that joy is not elusive but awaits me every day if I just look in the right place. Joy, I found, is a simple thing to enJOY.

This interesting and thought provoking group have come together to form a unique bond - one of support and camaraderie.

Today I am thankful this friendship.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Disciplined Procrastination

This is what I do. Why? Usually because my brain hasn't completely wrapped itself around whatever task I need to tackle. I do other things while one part of my brain processes my assignment. This method has worked for me for years. I tell myself these days that if I were more disciplined, I wouldn't need to put things off, but I have come to realize that some of my best work comes after a time of procrastination.

Case in point: I have known for two months that I would have to turn in a collage about my word for the year. However, I didn't start working on that project until Thursday evening. I went shopping on Tuesday for my materials, but they sat in my trunk until Friday. I didn't even gather the magazines I needed until Thursday evening. I then began cutting out different words and images I thought might be useful. When I finally broke out the other materials from the car, I stared at the blank canvas, not sure exactly which direction I wanted to go.

A Blank Canvas - Very scary

Even after I gathered some more supplies, I still didn't know where I was going.

Finally, I just had to jump in with both feet and start laying stuff down.
After several hours of pasting, papering, cutting and inking, I finally had a finished project.You can click on the picture to see it larger.

This canvas was created as part of my monthly "Reflectng on Our Words" group post. Below you will see the various contributions from the other bloggers in the group.

Miruspeg created a Scrapblog page about balancing desire with persistence.

Flygirl also got out the scissors and paper to show us what she thinks of she thinks about JOY. Doesn't her collage just make you smile?
AVT Coach made a gorgeous mosaic of photos representing Abundance and included the following:
May is a month full of life. Graduations, Weddings, Concerts, Recitals, and Championships. Bike races, Running races, and Horse races. It is a month in Oklahoma for rain storms and twisters. You have to keep your sneakers on to catch up with the action.
May is also "Better Speech and Hearing Month". I'd like to think of it as "Better Encouraging and Listening Month". My blog posts have been absent but my life has been full. I am truly creating abundance one step at a time. Blessing to you as we move into June. What will the next month bring?
Octamom also provided us with an "excellent" collage created at

It makes me proud to belong to such a wonderful group of friends. Together we have given each other support and for me accountability while we continue to Reflect on Our Words.
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