While the past couple of years have brought us some mild winters, this year, well, this year has been a gift to some and curse to others.
Here we are in Central Pennsylvania and at the end of February, we have yet to have an actual snow storm. The evenings have been mild and the day winds to a minimum.
We have had but one "snow-fall" where we awoke to a tiny bit of snow on the ground and then later in the day it changed to rain and thunder. By dusk, the snow had disappeared as if it had never come to visit us.
While many are enjoying the lack of winter weather, some are still hopeful for at least one good snow storm.
I was born in a small town of New York where winters came as early as late September and the snow accumulated well past the Easter season. The first snow of the season was ceremonially christened with our traditional hot cocoa, marshmallows (holiday-oriented of course, I mean, you all remember these right? -They had pumpkins, Santas, Easter Bunnies, etc.) and the secret and most cherished ingredient - a hidden Hershey's Kiss at the bottom of the mug.
Then quick bathroom breaks before mom stuffed all four us munchkins into our snowsuits!
We would spend hours and hours playing in the snow - making forts, snowmen, sledding, and just having fun trying to walk around in the snow which had piled just as high as us.
Our noses would turn a slight red and our toes and fingers would begin to feel numb before we would "allow" mom to call us in for the day and of course another cup of hot cocoa!
It's memories like these ones that remind us that we all need to latch on to some child-like behaviors - ignorance to some things and joyous to others!
More importantly, we need to live more free-like. Less anxiety. More hope. More love.
For the past 5 or so years, I have made my parents a yearly scrapbook and each year it is stuffed with month-to-month adventures that we do together as a family. I think it helps my sisters see that despite noting how much they hate each other, they really do love one another.
This past Christmas was a hard one for my family. The baby sister decided to announce that she wanted nothing to do with our family - I think most of us have since been trying to respect her request. I don't think she realized how much it would trickle down through the family and how it divide us even more.
I have always tried to stand in a more "middle-man" space and love each family member for who they are. We all have our flaws, but we also all come with our own set of beauty!
While we are almost 3 months into the year, I am finding I don't have as much material as I accustomed to for the family yearbook.
I am finding that I no longer care or stress about trying to bring the family together and I quickly learned, it was me - it was me nagging them, it was me chasing them, it was me... and I can't drain myself trying to make something happen that others don't want - family or no family.
And in this time, as I have learned to essentially treat my family as I would any other acquaintances - I have learned to focus more on myself. I have learned that I still love my family with all of my heart, but to essentially let them fly their own path. I have learned, in this world, it is you and you only. You need to think of you first, be brave, do the things you want to do and fly your own rhythm.
With this, I am beginning to find my own peace, my own growth, and my own healing journey.
I am smiling more - thank you :)
The past month has been a very transformative month for me. I have started to emerge from my cocoon a bit more. I am leaving my strictly- at-home yoga parctice and moving back to some studio time. It's good for me to get out and surround myself with others.
When my anxiety kicks in - I say to its face: "GET OVER IT", and I move on. I am upping my game at work, letting go of some of my routines and just taking in some more fresh air.
I have found that I have begun baking more - something I used to spend a great deal of time on and always enjoyed experimenting with new recipes and creating new masterpieces as well as failures. The failures always seemed to teach me more than the successes.
Flourless Banana Bread
Bananas (6 overripe)
1/2 teaspoon Bake Soda
Splash of vanilla
Handful of soaked and mashed dates
1/2 teaspoon carob powder
Bake at 350 for almost an hour and then immediately set in the fridge to continue to settle for another 2-3 hours.
Enjoy with some homemade jam, honey, nut butter - get creative!
I prefer it served warm - but room temperature is just as good.
Oh - and it freezes well!
Here is to continued growth - 2017!
"My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style." - Maya Angelou