Friday, August 6, 2010

Smile at the The Delicious Life!

For the past few years, I’ve developed a bunch of mantras, mottos, sayings, and reminders that bring to mind all the blessings that we have when we just look. Some have been long forgotten (like bad shades of lipstick and shoes with uncomfortable heels:)  Others have stayed, and become a huge part of what brings joy to my life, purpose to my day, and a balance to everything that life demands.

Take a peek….maybe you can identify with some, and hopefully, you can add your own!
1. Pray consistently – One thing that offers tremendous strength is prayer. I’m a lifelong Christian, and my boyfriend…Hindu. One of the things that unites us is our prayer. Together, we pray over food (we both looooooove to eat!). In my personal space though, I pray for what every my spirit is hungry for. Lately, I’ve ended my prayer by asking for 3 blessings: a blessing on a loved one (like traveling safety for my Mom, who is in Tanzania on a mission trip), a blessing on an unfortunate group (like those impacted by the rains in India), and a blessing on my life (like finding direction). There’s so much empowerment that comes from prayer, and it gets my day started on the right foot!
2. Live a life worth writing a book about – And I’m trying! I’ve been journaling since I was a little girl, and have lots of torn notebooks to show for it. There was purpose in my madness…..when I feel really defeated sometimes, I’ll pick up a journal, read an entry from a year ago, and feel so invigorated (almost immediately) about how far life has brought me.

3. Dress for the job that you want – I work in philanthropy at an office in Ottawa (love the job, by the way), and while I’ll likely stay in the field, I want my career to somehow encompass more creativity. So that’s how I dress – with color, ethnic richness, and funky silhouette. While I try not to pay too much attention to external fashion trends around me, the way you dress yourself is indeed a presentation to the world….and says a million lovely things about you!
4. Wake up slowly – This I learned from a 3 year old cutie pie that I used to babysit. Whenever he’d wake up from his nap, he’d always say that he’s waking up slowly. I’ve adopted this to characterize the way I greet the day. Allowing 5-10 abundantly empty minutes between you being married to the bed and you standing upright is such a great way to transition into the morning. Usually looking at the sun is enough….then my brain starts working, and gets excited about the day.

5. Try to make someone else smile – Nothing brings more joy than knowing that you could bring joy to someone else. Usually, a “Good Morning!” in the elevator in my building is enough (quite usual in my southern hometown…not so much in Ottawa…yet!).

What are some of your mantras/mottos/reminders about living the good life?!?!!?!

ciao y'all!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Summertime....and the Living WILL BE EASY!!!!!

Gosh I miss the days of old when summer was really summer.   A time to take off from school, assignments, responsibility, and life in general.  Now that I'm a grown-up, I really miss the relaxed laziness of summer.  I don't even know what it IS to have a lazy summer anymore!

Work is nonstop...I can't take off from how can I capture the essence of summer in the context of adulthood?!?!?!!  I'm just coming down from the high of one of the world's funnest celebrations (Caribana in Toronto!!!), and I want to build this FUN state of mind into my week. 

I can't lie - I do find traces of summer in my weekends (a trip to the cottage, a few cookouts here and there.....), but I really want to find more happiness in this limited season that we have.  I made the mistake of planning my big trip to California earlier this summer, in June. I kinda wish I had planned it for August - sort of something to look forward to throughout the summer, know what I mean?

Celebrating summer in Ottawa.....this is going to be my quest.  I've got some ideas....if you've got a few to add, please let me know :)

  1. Buy popsicles and eat them on the patio.
  2. Take an hour-long boat ride on the canal.
  3. WALK on the canal.
  4. Hijack my friend Daphna's pool for an afternoon.
  5. Take more walks outside (especially in the morning, if I can.  It's too muggy around sunset).
  7. Go dancing.
  8. Ask around about who is having a cookout (we can't have a grill on our outside property.  REALLY WACK!!!!!
  9. Dress in lighter fabrics.
  10. Have some summer dinners.

Hope to hear more ideas from ya!

ciao y'all!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

My best writing....

Oprah. Deepak. even Tupac - have all written and spoken about living the best life.  It seems, though, that talking about living the best life has been reserved for adults - those who have been through it, know about it, and are ready to do it over again, and do it better.

As I was growing up, I read voraciously (and still do) about how to improve my life, joy, spiritual strength, financial balance, career, etc. The pleasure is searching for writers whose views and goals are somewhat aligned with my own.  As a teenager and young adult, that was very difficult.

I'm huge on tips, tools, and lists....oh - and journaling, too!  Been writing since I was a young girl, and I'd always had it in my head to do something good with my journals.  The ideas are still coming together, but over the weekend I had an uplifting revelation:  to write the book that mothers will give to their daughters.  And, in some cases, this book will also be the book that daughters will give to their mothers.  I've been working on the content for years....just narrowing it down (in my own head) to what could be the most nourishing.

While a hardback edition might not even see the light of day, this is a soulfilled intention, and I'm gonna get started!!!  Wish me luck :)

ciao y'all!

My favorite holiday is........ CARIBANA!!!!

Seriously, folks.....if you're anywhere remotely close to the
Metro Toronto area next August,

It was beyond amazing....
good music, good peoples, good food, and good times.

I'm hoping to catch the fete in NYC in September,
but this year's Caribana festivities will be tough to match!

Photos come courtesy of my girl Angie Singh.

Good times, honey.  Good times!

A Haiku for the Polar Bear

I hope that you know
When the morn' greets and wakes me
You, again, are loved.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

The Young Traveler

And by young travelers, I don't mean the under 12 year olds who must fly under the supervision of air attendants (though I do appreciate the security that this can bring to parents!)

I'm thinking more of the advantages of studying abroad, and sharing (and learning!) more about how these amazing programs can really build a life of travel.

Read more here....

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