Monday, February 5, 2018

2018 Vision Board

After much self-reflection and a thorough evaluation of my prior year's intentions, I found myself drawn to the concept of "flowering" as a person in 2018.  I have an amazing life.  I am surrounded by supportive family and friends.  I am lucky to have married a man who chooses to be with me every day of our life.  It may not always be easy, but we both continue to strive to make our relationship better and better every year.  We have remarkable children who fill my life with questions, frustrations, happiness and life lessons.  We have an incredible home and sanctuary. I am blessed to have a successful career where I can be a resource and expert to my colleagues and clients.  Honestly, I am truly grateful.

However, life is full of teaching moments and this year I want to continue to grow and flower as a person.  I want to continue to blossom but in a more mindful way.  I want to be kinder and more flexible while also staying true to who I am.

I want to raise amazing children with less yelling, more patience, more gratefulness and lots of giggles.

I want to fertilize/improve my marriage.  Our relationship has strengthened so much in the past couple of years already, but we can still continue to grow and

I want to prune/thin my body.  I haven't focused on my health in the past couple of years and would like to find the balance between exercise, nutrition and relaxing.

And while conquering all of these intentions, I want to soak up as much sunshine as I possibly can.  Be that on a beach vacation or in our backyard oasis.

Now, may all of my intentions come to be ...

2018 – Flowering 
Definition: reach an optimum stage of development; develop fully and richly
Sunday, February 4, 2018

Vision Boarding

For the past five years, I have created a vision board every January as a way to focus on my intentions for the upcoming year.  A vision board is a visualization tool in which you build a collage of words and pictures that represent certain goals and dreams you are trying to achieve. In creating my vision board for 2018, I found myself very drawn to examining and reflecting on my vision boards of the past.  I loved exploring what goals and intentions I had set for myself and how these aspirations transpired by the end of my goal year.  Some of my past vision boards were more focused on photos and less on words.  Others were more word and phrase focused.  Many of my boards shared many similar goals and yet each were uniquely different.  They even varied by color.  Some expressed much more vibrant colors while others were more muted or pale.  Here is my analysis of the past five years of vision boarding.  I hope you find it as intriguing as I did.

2013 – Core Strengthening 
Definition:  make or become stronger
Intentions for the year:  Strengthen marriage, career, financials, as a mom, my body, personal well-being and development.
Results:  We strengthened our marriage with a couples trip to Miami which allowed us to connect more.  Josh strengthened our financials by starting Commercial 33.  Jenn strengthened her faith by taking a Judaism course.   

2014 – Playful 
Definition:  giving or expressing pleasure and amusement
Intentions for the year:  Playful with my love of learning and storytelling, in my marriage, in the kitchen (cook more), on vacation, with my kids.  
Results:  We played more at home with the kids.  We played on the beach in Coronado.

2015 -- Re-Framing 
Definition: to look at, present, or think of (beliefs, ideas, relationships, etc.) in a new or 
different way
Intentions for the year:  Re-frame my mind, my relationships, by body, work-life balance.  
Results: We re-framed our backyard with master renovation.  Jenn turned forty and took some time to re-frame what that meant to her.  Madi started kindergarten, so we had to re-frame our thoughts about vacations and daily life schedules.  

2016 – Connections 
Definition: a relationship in which a person, thing, or idea is linked or associated with something else.
Intentions for the year:  Connect more with my husband, with my kids, with my friends, with my faith.  
Results:  We cultivated more relationships through our trip to Israel which also strengthened my connection with Judaism and my husband.  We added a couple of new family members – Mina and Harley. Jenn connected with her sorority sisters with a girls weekend.  We connected more with our kids during family vacations and trips.

2017 – Transformation 
Definition: a thorough or dramatic change in form or appearance
Intentions for the year:  Transforming my thoughts from old to new, my attitude, our family’s dynamics, my marriage, my work-life balance, my body. 
Results: I enjoyed my best sales years ever, felt fully connected to my husband and family through some personal assistance and guidance, developed a core circle of friends, maintained my body weight, and changed my thoughts on life.

In retrospect, the past five years have been full of so many amazing things: growth, challenges, relationships, vacations, learning, stability, spirituality, health, laughter, little moments, gratitude and lots of love.  I can only hope that the next five years are just as fulfilling and astounding.
Saturday, February 3, 2018

Melinda's Bridal Shower

On the first Saturday of January, I hosted a bridal shower for Melinda.  We have been friends since high school and we consider her a part of our family.  Cannot believe we have known each other over twenty years!  Anyway, she is getting married in February, and our entire family will be involved in her wedding.  Knowing her love of cooking, I centered the bridal shower theme around the kitchen.   Melinda's guests included family, friends and coworkers.  We enjoyed some fun kitchen themed games, tons of good food, mimosas and showering Melinda with gifts and love.  It was a wonderful party!  Cannot wait to celebrate with her more at the wedding!

Melinda with some of her bridesmaids (me, Merritt and Debra)
Guests enjoying the party
Game time!
Gift time!
All of the guests
Melinda and I
Melinda and Merritt
Friday, February 2, 2018

Puerto Penasco ~ Adios

Our last day in Puerto Penasco was bittersweet.  We all wished that we could just have one more day, but we also knew that we would most likely say that every departure day.  The last morning was spent packing, cleaning up the house, enjoying final walks and family pictures on the beach.  This will definitely be a New Years trip we will not forget any time soon.  Adios for now...

Sunrise view from the patio
Morning beach views
Family photo
Christy and Brandon
The Raetz Family
Maelyn and Keaton
Selfie with Aiden and Christy
The Entire Gang!
One last car debacle ~ losing our boxes on the Mexican highway
Thursday, February 1, 2018

Puerto Penasco ~ New Years Day

New Years Day was a quiet one for our normally rambunctious group.  Sadly, when the clock struck midnight, it delivered a major stomach bug to La Casa del Milagro.  Five out of the six adults and one out of the four kids developed this nasty virus.

The kids (as Keaton didn't develop the virus until after dinner) spent the day playing on the beach.  They must have known that a majority of the household was on bed rest as they played all day outside.  No fighting.  No crying.  They entertained themselves all day.  It was pretty amazing.

Paige and I mostly read, sunbathed and chatted until she finally succumbed to the stomach bug late in the afternoon.  Then, there was one adult standing.  That evening, I spent the night on the couch for two main reasons:  1) to avoid Josh and our contaminated room and 2) to be close enough to the kids in case they fell ill and needed some assistance in the middle of the night.  Luckily, I was not needed.

Beach time!
Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Puerto Penasco ~ New Years Eve

New Years Eve in Mexico was a blast!  Our day included some more beach time, a visit downtown to enjoy some shopping, and dinner at La Casa del Capitan at sunset.  After dinner, we returned home to ring in the New Year with fireworks, dancing on the beach, and midnight kisses.

As a side note, let me just say, the "skinny" margaritas at La Casa del Capitan were pretty potent.  Some of us may not have been able to stay awake until midnight. 

What a fun way to celebrate the end of an amazing year!

Kids enjoying breakfast on the patio
Beach walking
Beach reading
Aiden and Keaton
The kids
Walking around downtown
  Puerto Penasco!
Christy, Madi and I
Christy and I
Christy and Brandon
Our family
Christy, Madi and Mae
Madi balancing
Dinner at La Casa del Capitan
A girls selfie
Paige and Jason
Madi and I
Aunt Christy teaching the boys hand gestures at sunset
Miss Madi
Madi and Mae
Paige and Keaton
Paige and I
Paige, Christy and I
Jason and Mae
The boys
Looking at the sunset
Josh and I
Christy and Madi with the lighthouse
Paige and Jason
Sleeping! (that would be me)