14
Sep

Five Minute Friday - crowd

Every Friday we unite for five minutes. Only five minutes, that's all we get, that's all we have. And then, right where we are, no edits or second-thoughts, we publish those words. This week, we write on crowd.

Go.

It's not my favorite, being surrounded by a crowd.
I instantly think of strangers and small talk and the awful feeling of awkward.
I think of how awkward I am, how quiet I get.
I get lost.
But then I think of him.
How much he loves a crowd.
How much he comes to life.
How much he seeks it.
How much energy he gets from it.
And I realize he is my balance.
He has taught me to find the energy from it, to take their excitement and turn it into my own.
He has taught me to love races, not just solo races, but official races with crowds of people.
He has taught me to sit back and watch, take in the crowd, watch how excited they get.
He has taught me to look at my resort town with enthusiasm when the crowds pour in.
He has taught me that it means life and joy and people are out and happy.
He has taught me to get caught up in it, use it to my advantage.
And so I have.

Each summer, our amazing little town comes to life in this amazing way and crowds and crowds of people come.
Everything is busy and loud and warm and summer nights walking around have become my favorite.
We are teaching our kids how special it is, how lucky we are.
We remind them that having to find parking means people are here.
We tell them that we are privileged, we get to live here, where others want to be.

Each year, I do two races and both are now in official race settings, not just on my own.
I have learned that my time does improve.
I have learned that it does warm my heart to hear people cheer their family members on.
I have learned that there is something about that "great job" from a stranger who is smiling that makes me feel okay.
I have learned that reading the signs always makes me laugh when I need it most.
I have learned to relish in their screams and cheers and go get its.

You taught me this and now I know it too.
I get it.
I don't need it like you do, I never will but I understand now.
Crowds do mean life and joy and spirit and energy.

Stop.

7
Sep

Five Minute Friday - rain

Every Friday we unite for five minutes. Only five minutes, that's all we get, that's all we have. And then, right where we are, no edits or second-thoughts, we publish those words. This week, we write on rain.

Go.

We're called Pluviophile, lovers of rain.
Those that find peace, joy, a calming of the mind the second the first drop falls.
It's restorative.
It is beautiful.
It is comforting.
And I wish I could explain why it's so important to me to have rainy days.
I wish I could eloquently put into words that when the skies gray, when the water falls, when the sound on my roof is that rhythmic beat of the earth crying, I feel comforted, I feel safe.
I am restored.
I feel relaxed and deeply exhale.
Because there is a sense of stopping, pausing, watching.

It starts with a darkening of the sky.
A sign of what is to come and flickering lights become a must.
You can finally look at the sky without squinting, you can see nature take over.
And we need the gray to enjoy the sun.
We need the dark to finally appreciate and never take for granted the light.
Water is needed because our earth needs to drink.
And sometimes, we all need a good cry, even the skies.

The sound, the rhythmic sound.
The sound against my roof, up against the windows, the sound that reminds me that all is being renewed.

So send me your long, cold, rainy days.
The ones I can watch out my window, light candles, cozy myself up.
Send me the wind and the storms, it's okay to tantrum out of control, even the weather needs to have a bad day.
Send me water and the sound and the rhythm that brings about a calm and reminds me to breathe.
Send me your storms while I take a long car ride so that I can see its full story in all of its glory.

I am not just okay with rainy days, I crave them. I wish them, I look for and am drawn to them.
They allow me to finally pause, take a moment and admire the power of weather.
Just stop, listen, watch it as it falls down all around.
And then, watch how green everything looks, how renewed it all is.
We need the rain, we all need water.
Some of us more than others.

Stop.

2
Sep

Five Minute Friday - loyal

Every Friday we unite for five minutes. Only five minutes, that's all we get, that's all we have. And then, right where we are, no edits or second-thoughts, we publish those words. This week, we write on loyal.

Go

I was away when this one was posted.
And I am too loyal to just let it go.

Loyal is a word I often use to describe myself.
I am loyal to my family
to my framily
to my work
to my life choices
to my little faces
to my person
to my life.
I am committed to myself and my life.

I am your go to if you need someone in your corner.
I am the one always on your side.
I am the constant, I am the protector of relationships and bonds, I am loyal.

I am the one that can be counted on.
I am the one that rushes to defend, myself, my choices, my people.
I am always working for you, I am the one that will have your back.

And recently, a coworker mentioned how they too were described as loyal and how that is such a generic term
and a different coworker was quick to point out that it's really not.
Because it is not generic and it's not a given and it's not in everyone.
It is only the loyal that understand that we will stand by your side.
We will stand proud and strong and we will be your everything.
It is the loyal that understand that we love fiercely and with all we have.
We give you our all so we do not take love lightly, we know who is deserving, who we allow in.
Because once you have us, really have us, we don't let go.
We are yours and you are now a part of us in a very special and unique way.
We are the loyal.

31
Aug

Five Minute Friday - rush

Every Friday we unite for five minutes. Only five minutes, that's all we get, that's all we have. And then, right where we are, no edits or second-thoughts, we publish those words. This week, we write on rush.

Go.

We are having a summer.
An actual summer with late nights and camping and vacation and the dad adventure days and camps and sleep aways and smores and ice cream for dinner and a Saratoga Racetrack kind of summer.
We are having an amazing summer.
With sunsets and sunrises and paddling and water and swimming and tired puppies and fall asleep the second your head hits a pillow and friends and framily.
God, we are having a summer.
But with everything so jammed pack and every week and weekend planned and crammed, I feel so rushed.
It all went by so fast.
And I know it always does and I know it only gets worse the older and older they get, but this was a different kidn of rushed.
This is a: our window is closing kind of rushed.
This is a: our time with them, this part of them is quickly fading kind of rushed.
This is a: they are getting bigger and more independent but still just want us and that won't always be the case kind of rushed.
This is a: are we appreciating this time enough kind of rushed.
This is a: are we pausing enough kind of rushed.
This is a: are we telling them how much they mean to us enough kind of rushed.
This is a: are we letting them know how much we love to be around them too kind of rushed.

I spent a summer watching you.
Both of you.
The nine-year-old that still loves stuffed animals and playgrounds and mom and dad time and reading.
the six-year-old that still loves all Star Wars stuff and running around, and all sports and mom and dad playing with him and reading dates.
I watched you and I saw our gorgeous wide open window.
The one in which you don't need, you just want us around.
The one that lets you do more for you, but still love all little girl and boy things.
And I watched me too.
I watched me inhale all of you in.
The deepest breath I could hold, and I forgot to exhale.
And so I watched me live in a world we aren't in right now and I held and held my breath.
I lived in the world where this incredible window was already closed.
I lived in a world where there was no going back in time.
I lived in a world where there was no reliving it and I felt rushed.
Because I want zero regrets when it comes to living your best childhood.
I want to wake up old and have these memories make me smile.
I want to wake up much more wrinkled and have my eyes glisten at the thought of all we did together.
I want to wake up more gray and run my hands through my hair and remember all the times you did.

I lived in tomorrow and forgot to exhale and remember I am here with you today.
I lived in a time where I want time to constantly hit pause, even for a little while longer
so I can hold you more.
so I can tell you more things about you.
so we can discover more about you.
so I can give little guys and kiss noses and breathe in all the little and olive juice love.

But, I can't pause and I think I am being to realize I don't have to.
I have a little while longer to go and so this is the pause.
This is the time, this is when they don't need us but want us.
It is happening right now and as long as I don't rush through it
as long as I don't look at this gorgeous open window of time and spend it worrying about the door on the other side,
I won't rush us through it.
I have exhaled.
I have hit pause.
Every day until you guys tell me, mom, it's time to take one more deep breath and hit play again because we are ready
and taking you with us.

Stop.

17
Aug

Five Minute Friday - loved

Every Friday we unite for five minutes. Only five minutes, that's all we get, that's all we have. And then, right where we are, no edits or second-thoughts, we publish those words. This week, we write on loved.

Go.

The way it feels to be around you.

I had this week with friends who know my whole story.
We talked and talked and talked.
We ate and laughed and watched.
We watched our children (no longer babies) love on each other.
We watched them become the sort of friends that will also know each other's whole story.
We watched the waves come in and out.
We watched the sunshine warm us all.
We watched the water make our little faces silly.
We watched love.

The way it feels to be around you.

I once wrote about when love becomes family.
How important that feeling is.
How you just know that it means this person will be in your life, you are connected.
And it can happen with partners.
It can happen with friends.
It can happen with the family you were given and the one you pick for yourself.
But along the way, all you have to keep in mind is the bond, the connection, the feeling of loving and being loved.
It is all that matters.
Not the squabbles.
Not the ups and downs.
All of those tell your beautiful story, give your life the color it needs.
But the family, the connection, the wanting to love them and being loved by them, that's family.
That's love.

The way it feels to be around you.

I didn't know if I would be a mom.
I didn't know if I would take this on.
And just the week, I was reminded by someone who only hears snippets of my life that I love it.
And I do.
I love being a mom, no, I love being your mom.
I love holding you.
I love hugging you.
I love the smooches.
I love the traditions.
I love making it special.
I love your childhood.
I relish in your little.
I am in love with your points of view.
I protect this time.
But, none of that comes naturally to me.
All of my mothering is a lot of work.
I work and work and work at being your mom.
But, want to know why that's okay, because it is the work that I love.
My whole life has led me to this moment, has led me to you, has led me to love my mothering.
My whole life, I didn't even realize how much I wanted this but now that it is here, I love being your mom.
Because when I am with you, I am loved.

It is my year of different.
And as the year is quickly rolling by, I need reminders of why I wanted it to be different.
I needed to find peace, calm, health, me.
I needed to find acceptance, gratitude, and reminders of all the love.
The love I give, the love I get, the love that surrounds us.

Because being loved is the way it feels to be around you.

Stop.

3
Aug

Five Minute Friday - anniversary

Every Friday we unite for five minutes. Only five minutes, that's all we get, that's all we have. And then, right where we are, no edits or second-thoughts, we publish those words. This week, we write on anniversary.
Go.

There's the one I share with you and the world.
The one in which I met you halfway down an aisle and together, we walked hand in hand to our forever.
But then there's the one just for us.
The one that people tell me I am silly for still recognizing.
The one where we met.
And for me, meeting you is the same as the day we became family.
I never needed the big day, or the announcement.
All I ever needed was us.
Because from the moment you smiled at me, I had this overwhelming feeling we would be in each other's lives.

There's the one I share with you and the world.
The one in which I am not even in the picture and dad is introducing you.
The one in which everyone else gets to finally see the amazing you are, all wrapped in pink little.
But then there's the one just for us.
The one in which we became connected well before it was time.
The one in which you let me know you were there
you were coming
you were a girl
when you were actually coming to meet everyone else.
There's that anniversary too and I remember it so clearly.
You were my girl, I was your mom and since I didn't enter into motherhood lightly
this is the anniversary where you whispered in my ear, we've got this.

There's the one I share with you and the world.
The one in which everyone came to meet this little man we created.
The one in which people fell hard for you fast.
The one in which I can hear nurses fighting over who gets to change you because being by your side meant finding joy.
But then there's the one just for us.
This quiet moment in chaos in which they put us face to face, nose to nose.
And I gave you our first little guy.
It's the one in which I remember thinking, this is love at first sight.
You are my one and only love at first sight.

There's the one I share with you and the world.
The one in which a family a four went and picked you up in a parking lot.
Got to take new puppy pictures and tried to heal from a loss.
But then there's the one just for us.
The one in a friend's living room looking through pictures of a new litter.
And I saw your puppy face and I said, that's her.
That's our girl.
I showed your dad and said clearly, this is her.
This is our next baby and we have to go get her.
Because I knew you had healing powers to mend the sad and broken.
And I knew we were ready to accept that again.

Anniversaries around here are important.
Anniversaries around here are special.
Some are joyous reminders of love and family and framily.
Some are reminders of loss and goodbyes and heartache.
All tell our story though because life has to be filled with both.
Anniversaries around here are plentiful.
There are many of them because we have much to celebrate, so much to remember and keep close.

Stop.

27
Jul

Five Minute Friday - 13

Every Friday we unite for five minutes. Only five minutes, that's all we get, that's all we have. And then, right where we are, no edits or second-thoughts, we publish those words. This week, we write on thirteen.
Go.

The moment I left home for college.
The moment I met and realized I had forever found framily.
The moment I adopted our Mia.
The moment I met you and it all melted.
The moment you asked me.
The moment we moved to our little town.
The moment I fell for Anna.
The moment I became CEO.
The moment I met Cole.
The moment we once again found forever framily.
The moment we had to say goodbye to our first peanut.
The moment I started a company.
The moment you agreed to Pearl and I realized I couldn't love you more.

These are my 13 moments of life. Looking back, I realize we have a nice little life.

13
Jul

Five Minute Friday - done

Every Friday we unite for five minutes. Only five minutes, that's all we get, that's all we have. And then, right where we are, no edits or second-thoughts, we publish those words. This week, we write on done.
Go.

I try.
It's the best I can do.
No, it's the best thing about me.
I put one foot in front of the other and I keep going and trying and I use grit and determination and I get there.
I never look the prettiest.
I never look accomplished.
I never look like I belong.
I never finish first or top anything.
I struggle, but I keep trying.

And I am done with feeling bad about it.
I am done with hearing how I need to tweak something or change something or work harder on a different part.
I try my best and I get there and that makes me proud as hell of me.

I work for what I want.
I set my mind to it, I formulate a plan and I learn by making mistakes.
And I make a lot of them.
I make them as a mom, as a business owner, as a long-time CEO, as a friend, as a bride.
I make them over and over again.

And I am done pretending that I am the only one that has faults.
I am done with feeling like the world is sitting on my shoulders and I have to, should have, need to have
everything or anything figured out.
I tell my kids that everyone makes mistakes
all you have to do is take responsibility
apologize and learn so you don't do it again.
And it is time I start listening to myself.
Everyone makes mistakes, not just me, everyone.

I do a lot of research on me and others.
How to communicate
how to manage
how to be a better person to those in my life
how to connect better
how to make them feel better
how to make myself feel better.
What makes me run?
What makes me tick?
What makes me move?
What is frustrating for me?
What motivates me?

And I will never be done.
There is always new information to learn.
Always more information to gather.
And it does make us better people.
Not because of labels and putting things in boxes but because it illuminates who we are, who others are.
Because it helps us understand more
judge less
have more patience
set up better systems
be our best selves.

Anger comes easily to me.
Blue and lack of luster and joy.
Never calm and or at peace but always moving, nervous, my mind always going.
But there is too much beauty and joy for this to be all of life.
And I need a balance. I need to be surrounded by love and joy and calm and happy.
So I am done with misery for misery's sake.
I am done with those that look for reasons to be angry, just because.
I am done with having to be with those that cannot see color, everything is black and white.

It is my year of different and I have found ways to say yes, I accept as well as no, I am done.

Stop.

6
Jul

Five Minute Friday - vacation

Every Friday we unite for five minutes. Only five minutes, that's all we get, that's all we have. And then, right where we are, no edits or second-thoughts, we publish those words. This week, we write on vacation.
Go.

Standing, watching you run in and out of the water
hearing your joy spill out of you.
Seeing your childhood come to life.
Getting the house ready to go, my little girl who believes in traditions as much as I do waits all year for this.
She waits for us to pile into the car
she waits for the house
she waits for ice cream for dinner
she waits for our framily to show up
she waits for the walk to the beach
she waits for this time.

Our vacations are filled with nothing special and that makes it magic.
Our vacations are filled with doing nothing and it is amazing.
They are simple.
Simple food
simple toys
simple home
simple times.
Walks
dinners at home
sandwiches on a beach
sandcastles and water
ice cream.

They are almost the same thing every single day.
They are so much nothing and not doing that I finally unclench.
I finally exhale.
There is so much laughing so much catching up and talking about important and unimportant things
so much time
so much reading
so much coffee
so much togetherness.

And I know, you shouldn't need a vacation from your life and I don't but that doesn't mean we can't take this opportunity to realize how exceptional time away is.

I hope you grow up and find your circle.
I hope you find people that make you better.
I hope they are in your daily life as well as ones you can live with for a week.
I hope your vacations are special
I hope you remember that ours were.

Stop.

29
Jun

Five Minute Friday - if

Every Friday we unite for five minutes. Only five minutes, that's all we get, that's all we have. And then, right where we are, no edits or second-thoughts, we publish those words. This week, we write on if.
Go.

If I smiled more, I would be proud of my almost 40-year-old lines.
If I laughed more, you wouldn't see me as a serious mom.
If I let go more, the anxiety wouldn't build.
If I was more patient, my family would feel lighter.
If I was more in-tune, I would know how to de-escalate situations.
If I could turn back time, there are so many things I would change, so many conversations I would do over, so many words I would take back.

But, I am me.
I am me and I am okay.
I am me and I don't have to be different.
I am me and I am not anyone else.
I am me and I shouldn't be anyone else.
I am me and I have to find the good of what I do.
I am me and I too am allowed to make mistakes.

If I focus on my good.
If I remember my year of different.
If I remember that I am who I am.
If I remember that I am not the crazy that I feel others see me as.
If I remember how much I love, how much I care, how much I try, how much I do.
If I remember that the person standing in front of that mirror is okay, she is okay.

If I had to do it all over again, this life all over again, you know I would have it turn out just like this right?
I would marry you all over again.
I would have the two children we have.
I would have spent 17 years loving Mia and I would adopt Pearl.
I would be living here.
I would be loving you all.
If I had it to do all over again, I would have it turn out just like this
being exactly who we are.
Because we are okay.

Stop.

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