weekly letters.

dear andrew, thanks for taking Radley out every morning before work.  he obviously loves this quality time with you.  dear perfect tea maker, you continue to be so good to me.  thanks for getting me over that 3pm hump.  dear chlorine, thanks for boosting my ego by making me feel like an olympic swimmer.  i love being on a run & only smell you.  dear sweet hubby, thanks for fighting so hard for our future.  i'm super excited to have you as my partner-in-crime.

what are you grateful for?

these letters are inspired by my forever-fave blog


recapping my january goals.

this january, i set out to accomplish a few minor goals, hopefully make a couple new habits and embrace creativity.  here's how it went:
make time for sunsets (or sunrises): seeing how i'm usually driving to work as the sun comes up and leaving well after it's down, this was much more difficult than i anticipated.  i did however witness some amazing sky magic on days i was lucky enough to get out early and on weekends when i took full advantage of this time of day.  to be honest, just being aware of this everyday beauty is something i really enjoyed throughout the month and something i'd love to continue throughout the year (please note, you've officially been warned of a possible over abundance of sky photos on my instagram account).
eat 10 days of whole food:  this my friends, was an epic fail.  mornings were my most successful "whole food" time of day but I still managed to drink way too much coffee and eat too many scones.  basically, i was eating out way too often and by the time we got home from work, mexican & chinese was suddenly way more appealing than homemade stir fry & dishes.  there will be a take two.

meditate regularly: i'm in the habit of meditating about 4 times a week.  and for now, that's better than nothing.  it's gradually becoming a habit and is definitely a tool i love having in my mindfulness toolbox.
start triathlon training: this month i dove (pun intended) back into swimming and started adding spin classes and weekend cycling into my routine.  it's been fun to mix things up & helped me remember why i love triathlons to begin with- the training never gets dull.
embrace creativity: this was hands down the most amazing goal of the month.  by setting this intention i found i was so much more creative on a daily basis.  i wasn't starved for ideas and really felt my creativity soar.  i only have 2 months left of my 2013 project life album, i'm learning to play guitar, started taking a pottery class with my mom, & i'm even having more fun getting dressed in the morning (hey, it's the little things!).  it's been amazing and while these creative outlets are overshadowing some everyday rituals, i find the spontaneity fulfilling.

so there you have it.  some goals were set and met with flying colors and others, well...not so much.  i realized when planning these monthly goals, i should try and link my goals with what i'm trying to embrace so everything works together instead of pulling in different directions.  it gives me something to think about but for now, when reflecting on all i've managed to complete in a month, i'm going to extend myself some grace & just be proud of all i have done and not dwell on the could-have-been.


books of 2013.

atonement// the bone season// the girl who fell from the sky// a short history of nearly everything// gone girl// the happiness project// the kitchen house// mary coin// persuasion// wild// the fault in our stars// still alice// start// the seven spiritual laws of success

when we first moved to san diego i was desperate to get involved in something- anything- and so when a good friend of mine invited me to her book club, i jumped at the opportunity.  looking back, it's one of the best decisions i've made.

growing up, i read a lot.  i was the kid who had my nose in a book at all times & loved getting lost in riveting stories.  as i got older and life became more complicated my love for books never went away, but reading definitely took the back burner.  if i read 2-3 books a year i was lucky.

so now, being part of a book club with required reading, has forced me to make time for reading.  not everyday and maybe not for long periods of time, but enough that i have to finish reading one book a month.  at first i thought the pressure to find more time in my day was going to drive me to the brink, but as it turned out, slowing down and taking those much needed reading breaks really helped me recharge.

some of the books i read over the past year were awesome- like affected my life and inspired me big-time awesome- and others...well, not so much.  we have 10 ladies in our book club and each month (with the exception of the 2 breaks we take during the year) everyone picks one book during "their month."  this creates so much diversity in what we read- and i love that.  it gives us opportunities to experiment with books or just pick something we've been wanting to read for years.  but it also leaves room for some seriously dry novels.

i don't want this post to be a giant book report but i thought it would be nice to share some of what i've read over the past year (and maybe a couple opinions!) with you (and your book club perhaps).  i'll try and make some time to share with you what i'm reading this year, but for the time being, i've broken up these books into a few categories: must read, library rental, and snoozefest.  (please note, these reviews are totally my opinion.  also, i have nothing against renting from the library- i just tend to buy the books i love!)

must reads:
the girl who fell from the sky- a heartwarming story of loss and love.
the happiness project- definitely one of my favorites.  there's a lot of great goal setting ideas and interesting to get started on those things you've always wanted to do).
the kitchen house- an amazing novel.  you can't help but build a love/hate relationship with so many of the characters.
mary coin- a beautiful novel that does an amazing job bringing a single photograph to life.
wild- my hands down favorite book.  i laughed, i cried, i yearned for adventure.  this was the book my friends- the book that affected me to the core.
the fault in our stars and start- a total tear jerker.  i love a book that makes me cry.
smart- great read.  mostly because it's totally inspired me to find my awesome.  i'll be re-reading this one for regular inspiration.

library rentals:
gone girl- predictable but entertaining
still alice- an interesting perspective on alzheimer's
the seven spiritual laws of success- love the concept of this books and the applying daily laws


so there you have it.  the books of 2013.  if you take me up on any of these reads, i'd love to know your thoughts.  also, what are you reading now?


weekly letters.

dear andrew, very few people can say they're married to a pilot and a sailor.  i'm one of the lucky ones & am so thankful that you love sharing your hobbies with those dear to you.  dear 24 hour fitness, your monday yoga class keeps me centered and strong.  a total win-win and great way to kick-start my week.  dear san diego skyline, i know you hear this a lot- but damn, you're gorgeous.  thanks for always being so predictable.  dear hubster, you're the most supportive person i know.  thanks for always & undoubtedly standing beside my every whim.

these letters are inspired by my forever-fave blog.  in an effort to embrace all that i'm grateful for, i hope to make these letters a regular thang.


my january goals.

those of you who know me know i'm a big fan of goal setting.  way more than resolution making.  mostly because resolutions are daunting & tend to have an ominous "365 days" attached to whatever was promised.  with goals, i have the flexibility to ebb and flow my "resolutions"... & that's so much more my speed.

in years past i've gotten into the habit of making monthly goals.  sometimes they'll be simple- like reminders- and other times, they'll be focused and demanding of my time & energy.  but regardless of how big or small they may seem, they'll always be focused toward my personal growth.

this year, is no exception.  using embrace as my guide, i'm focusing on a monthly theme (in this case i'm embracing creativity) and mapping out a few goals i'd like to focus on.  this january, i'm diving into some creative eating habits, focusing a bit more on centering my mind and body with meditation and beautiful sky, and starting up my triathlon training.  right now, it's everything i need.

what are you hoping to embrace this month?

ps. i used the rhonna designs app to make this image.


my one word of 2014.

in 2013 i chose grow as my word of the year.  little did i know how very hard it was going to be to actually apply this word over 365 days.  i had expectations of growing fierce, growing this blog, growing strong and growing our little family.  what i wasn't expecting was how difficult this would be.  over the year there were times where i clung tightly to my growth as i tried my hands at new things and new ideas and new perspectives & other times clinging just as tightly, i'd come back, dirty, bruised and humbled by all that it meant to grow.  but looking back and reminiscing on all that was, i realized how much i did grow.  i grew in ways i didn't expect and in ways i never intended.  & that right there is why i continue to pick these words each year.

for 2014 i wanted another word just as empowering to guide me through the year.  so i chose embrace. 

as was the case with all my other words from year’s past, embrace found me.   it's not so much how it found me, but the state in which it found me.  after a moment of  discouragement, i had to step away from a situation and while i was badgering myself for silly, stupid, stuff- i realized i  had to stop, breathe, and embrace myself.  the very moment i spoke the word, i knew then and there what i needed to focus on in this new year.

unlike my last words, i'm hoping to do a better job documenting my progress as i find ways to fit embrace into my every-day life.  right now that concept doesn't seem like it’ll be that difficult, but as things change over the year- as they undoubtedly do- there will be times when embracing anything is the furthest thought in my mind.  and that my friends marks the beginning of a new adventure.

so today i'm embracing my life.  i'm embracing my past, my present & my right now.  i'm embracing my passions and dislikes, my body, my dreams, my commitments and responsibilities.  i'm embracing it all & looking forward to every minute of it.