I've been posting pics of coffee mugs since the beginning of the year. Partly to say, "Good Morning World" and well, I don't really know why else I would do it, but as I was having coffee today and looked at this mug, I realized that often these mugs are much more than just vessels which hold my coffee or tea or other things. They hold memories of people, places, times, things. I wonder if I'm the only one who sometimes spontaneously and other times very carefully chooses the mug in which I drink from daily. Let's talk (coffee) mugs!
The mug in this picture to the left holds a very special place in my heart. It's an ordinary mug to most people boasting a brand, but to me, it's a reminder of my time in Guangzhou, China when I became an auntie for the second time. Blenz was the coffee shop I frequented - let's face it - daily. It was a place I went to journal, correspond, reflect, people watch, read, unwind and just be. Every time I drink from this mug I think of what an amazing experience I had watching couples become families and little angels be delivered to love. It's just a mug, sure, but it holds so much more than coffee.
This one was a Christmas gift from a girl who took a chance, walked in and talked to me about renting space for her newly started business. She not only built her business inside that space, but a friendship was developed and while there were many times she was frustrated with me and I wanted to tell her to move out, we managed and both grew from the experience. Like the mug, there are imperfections in our relationship, but all in all, it remains in tact and watching her grow and develop was among one of the amazing blessings in my life.
The one on the right I bought for myself. I gave an identical one to a friend when her daughter got married probably because I wanted her to remember the moments of that joyful time and that we shared a part of it together. I'm not perfect and yes, do sometimes have ulterior motives when giving gifts, but truly, it was simply a gift given to say, "I love you and am thankful that you're my friend and included me in this important time in your life."
I have a cupboard full of mugs. I do have a few matching ones - you know the kind that go with your dishes, but not many as I prefer my eclectic collection and the memories that they hold.
If your mugs could talk, what would they say???
As I was driving to Kansas yesterday the phrase defining moments kept popping in my head. I thought about this for the majority of my drive and it continues to linger in my mind today. I'm not sure why, how or what, but decided I need to explore the thought a bit.
What is a defining moment? Do we have more than one in a lifetime? What actually constitues a defining moment?
I believe that defining moments happen throughout the course of our life so yes, we have more than one. Some are definitely more profound than others. Some make us laugh, while others make us cry, but we are shaped by these moments. They have an impact on us. They play a big role in this story of life. Sometimes, it's easy to overlook the small ones because we are searching for the one "BIG" one, but those small ones are none less important.
Some of the "big" defining moments in my life are things like my paternal grandmother dying when I was 11. One of the things I remember most about that day are being pulled out of class (I was in 5th grade) and watching a single tear fall down my dads left cheek as we were driving to his parents home. Yes, that's right, just a single tear from his left eye. I don't recall seeing him cry again and in some ways, I suppose seeing that made me feel I needed to not cry also - to be stoic. That thought could lead me into a whole other realm of realizations, but I will do my best to stay on point.
Another "big" defining moment in life was coming home after my second year in college, dropping my bags and announcing (yes, that's right - announcing) that I would not be returning to school in the fall. It was a waste of time and money and if I could just have a chance, well - that piece of paper didn't make me better at anything. Again, stoic, my dad sat there and looked at me, put down the paper he was reading and told me that was fine. I could have a job for the summer and a place to live, but when everyone else went back to school, I would no longer have that job or the room in their home so I had three months roughly to figure out what I was going to do with my life. And....yes - I knew he was serious.
This process of him having cancer, going through treatment and the aftermath I will also probably consider a defining moment. Partly because another chapter is coming to a close. You see, my dad has been an attorney for 47 years and he is in the process of closing that part of his life - of our lives. 101 W Washington in St. Francis, KS was a home away from home in many respects. We all spent many hours there at different times of our lives and it provided a way of life for us. It provided stability and a comfort as well as a thorn or two. It will be bittersweet when one day we are no longer able to come and go through the doors as we please, but it's a part of the process of life.
I don't want to be sad about that or those other "big" defining moments in my life. And so I won't be and I'll share some of the other definers - I became an aunt for the first time on December 8, 2004 and for the second time on January 10, 2006 and yet again on August 14, 2008. Those were amazing days! I started massage school on my 40th birthday in January of 2009 and found something I had no idea I would find. All of those defining moments have also led me to where I am today and in all reality to a place I never thought I would be with feelings I didn't even think were possible. You see, through those moments, I've learned a lot about myself as well as others. I've learned that I can love more than I ever thought I was capable of and understand more than I ever wanted to. I've learned how to be close and yet, stand back. How to be encouraging without overpowering. To give room for others to grow and develop. To come to the realization that although I may want to make everything happy and peaceful and loving, there are opportunities in the struggle and that each one of us has our very own defining moments because each one of us has our very own story. And that, my friends is a part of the beauty of life.
Go out and relish the defining moments in life. Live and tell your story!
Yesterday I kept seeing statements about how today (January 1) is the first blank page of a 365 page book and to make sure to write a good one. That made me think back to my childhood and how every January 1st we would sit around the table and my mom would want to know what our resolutions were for the year. I always thought this was silly and continued that thought process into adulthood, but as I was taking a shower this morning resolutions came to mind so I decided to give it more thought.
The word resolution as defined by Webster means: 1 - the act or process of resolving.
I think a part of my adversion to resolutions has always been that I break them as do many people I know so what's the point of making them if we're not going to follow through? Then I thought about the dream boards and vision boards and all sorts of other tools I've made throughtout the years and still not accomplished some things. Let that not be discouraging as there are many things I have accomplished and there are those which have somehow just managed to get done without any fanfare or fru-fru. My point? Without dreams, visions, resolutions we would not set goals or have plans or see those things come to fruition. We would not form habits that are lasting. Kind of like cooking or cleaning or many of those everyday tasks we no longer think about. If we didn't access the fact that there are dirty clothes which need to have something done with them, would we just continue buying new ones or would we put the dirty ones back on? Most of us are going to see that the laundry needs to be done, put the clothes in the washer (along with detergent and possibly softener), turn it on, run the cycle and then either hang to dry or place in the dryer. After that, we will remove and fold or hang and (sometimes) put where they belong. Goal accomplished! Clean clothes.
Resolutions are much the same. They are dreams, visions or goals which need a process in order to accomplish. Perhaps we need to really give these some thought before claiming them. Are we really going to follow through? Is that particular thing or idea important enough for us to do what needs to be done to actually accomplish it? Is it hard enough to really be considered and yet possible (even if it means stretching or reaching beyond our comfort zone) to complete?
I know, for me, sometimes when it gets hard or inconvenient, I let it go thinking I'll come back to it and then somehow with each passing hour, day, week, month, it's easier and easier to never make it a priority again. So, this year - 2017 - I resolve to make my list big, but not insurmountable and focus on holding myself accountable.
Wishing you all a happy, healthy and very prosperous New Year!
When I set up my website and blog under the author section it reads "Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview." Whew - cuz that's all I've got for the moment. I'm a pretty simple person who lives life lovingly. I care deeply and am passionate about many things. I have always had a spirit of (I'm going to call it) entrepreneurship so have been self-employed about as much as I've been employed by others. This is a place where I share thoughts, ideas and happenings. I'm finding that sharing my story (life) helps me as much or more than it helps others and I find that empowering. Keep doin' what you love and lovin' what you do! XO-KM