Well, That Didn’t Go As Planned.


For the past six weeks, I’ve been absent from writing. I have thought many, many times “Oh! I should write my letter for today!”

I didn’t.

The desire dwindled, and then my good old friend guilt kicked in: “But you committed to writing those!” “What about the one or two people who read faithfully? Will they miss it?”

Mostly, my commitment and determination and loyalty spoke: “You made a promise.”

When I was in graduate school, I took a class on qualitative research. Basically, this is a fancy term for sitting in a location and waiting for something to happen and trying to make sense of it. I chose a vegan cupcake place near one of my classes. Initially I thought my research would be health-related: why vegan? What kinds of people were coming into this bakery? etc. Sooner rather than later though, I saw a lot of feminist issues. I was wrangled into this more complex, uncomfortable study, and as hard as I tried to avoid it, there was no going back. I had to write the paper that my research was offering.

In my reflection on that class, I wrote about this struggle. I wanted so badly for things to be neat and tidy, for my hypothesis to be tested, for observations and results to be created, and for a conclusion reached. But my experience of that vegan cupcake place and its feminist issues was much more complex (ask me about it sometimes, it was fascinating.) I wrote in my paper: “this project much more realistically reflects life. Because life, in case you haven’t noticed, is messy.”

Project Thankful Heart has gotten messy too, at least in the way that I am not following my self-established terms.

I loved the first year of this project, and its 365 thank you letters. I loved starting it again. But my life took an unexpected turn. I ended up in two musicals, directing a third, and found a few new hobbies along the way. With the arrival of spring, I found myself leaving my house and the blogosphere behind in search of adventure with friends. I let this project rest.

And, now, I am putting it on hold. I’ve decided to focus my energy elsewhere. This is really tough for me, truth be told: I am the kind of person who feels the need to finish a TV show if I’m more than 10 minutes in, even if it’s terrible, and a book if I’m 50 pages in, since I’ve already committed. But I would rather give my whole (thankful, grateful) heart to this project rater than force my writing to seem authentic, spontaneous, and joyful. 

My gratitude? Absolutely still there. My joy? I’m living it in the real world. My desire to write? Count that in as well, and who knows what the future will hold?

But for now – I’m grateful for a year and a half or so of writing. The creativity, spritual reflection, and further joy is what my life needed. And now, I look towards the many other things that bring me that fulfillment at the moment.

Thank you always, for reading.

With gratitude,


Nos. 193 – 206: Spring Break.

I have been on spring break these past two weeks, and while I was off finding things to be grateful for and savoring them in real time, I had not updated the blog. So here’s a collection of all I’ve appreciated in the past 13 days:

193. Sleeping in late.

194. Broadchurch, the BBC series on Netflix that features David Tenant and some pretty rocking storylines.

195. A bowl of warm oatmeal on a cold day, complete with cranberries, walnuts, and cinnamon.

196. Safe flights and the airline workers that make it occasionally funny (by doing things such as playing “Highway to the Danger Zone” upon take off.

197. School Bread at Norway in Epcot.

198. Holding my best friend’s beautiful baby girl, a mere 20 hours after she was born, and knowing that she will see so many beautiful, wonderful things.

199. The super kind gentleman who held my coffee for me as I was in line for Frozen Ever After.

200. Lunch with friends whom I have not seen since their wedding – and meeting their beautiful baby boy.

201. Self care, in the form of a massage and a restorative aerial yoga class.

202. Getting to stay home while I have a cold over break to pump myself full of essential oils, apple cider vinegar, and tea.

203. A yoga practice which challenges and inspires you.

204. Trips to the fabric store and the creative projects they jumpstart.

205. Easy craft ideas that take less than an hour to make but have a big impact.

206. A beautiful hike through the snow and mud to find the sunshine. Both literally, and metaphorically.

No. 193: Invitations.

I received an invitation to rise today. I refused it at first. 

Even through my griping and agonizing over it, some part of me was asking: how is this an opportunity to grow? What will I learn?

So once I gave into it- here I am. Accepting this invitation to rise and grow and learn. Continuing a legacy of strength and acceptance and growth.

My record for surviving lousy days and events is 100%, after all, so I think it’s going to be okay.


You may write me down in history

With your bitter, twisted lies,

You may trod me in the very dirt

But still, like dust, I’ll rise.
Does my sassiness upset you?

Why are you beset with gloom?

’Cause I walk like I’ve got oil wells

Pumping in my living room.
Just like moons and like suns,

With the certainty of tides,

Just like hopes springing high,

Still I’ll rise.
Did you want to see me broken?

Bowed head and lowered eyes?

Shoulders falling down like teardrops,

Weakened by my soulful cries?
Does my haughtiness offend you?

Don’t you take it awful hard

’Cause I laugh like I’ve got gold mines

Diggin’ in my own backyard.
You may shoot me with your words,

You may cut me with your eyes,

You may kill me with your hatefulness,

But still, like air, I’ll rise.
Does my sexiness upset you?

Does it come as a surprise

That I dance like I’ve got diamonds

At the meeting of my thighs?
Out of the huts of history’s shame

I rise

Up from a past that’s rooted in pain

I rise

I’m a black ocean, leaping and wide,

Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.
Leaving behind nights of terror and fear

I rise

Into a daybreak that’s wondrously clear

I rise

Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,

I am the dream and the hope of the slave.

I rise

I rise

I rise.

No. 192: Ice Cream.

It’s been so long since I’ve had ice cream, and today, after our school “surprise we are cancelling classes and taking a field trip” day, I enjoyed some:

Vanilla. With whipped cream, rainbow sprinkles, mini chocolate chips, and crushed oreos.

I felt like a five year old again. And it was delightful.

No. 191: The Friend Who Picks Up.

One of my friends made a phone call yesterday and the recipient picked up. When she asked him a question, he replied, “I’ll have to get back to you. I’m about to take this exam that starts in about three minutes.”

She was taken aback and bordered on scolding him playfully. “Then why did you pick up?” she asked.

“You don’t call often. I figured it was important,” he replied.

To the friends who pick up – regardless of how often we call – thank you.

No. 190: Anew Life Yoga (&Mike &Jen).

It’s one of life’s greatest pleasures to see your friends fully realize one of their dreams. Today, I got to see Mike and Jen live theirs.

I met them at a small group assist after starting at Honor Yoga. Through attending classes, I got to know Mike and Jen. From powering through heated classes together, to enjoying some sushi a few doors down, to seeing Jen’s lovely daughter get married this past year, it has been a privilege to become their friends.

When they went away on a yoga retreat last year, I saw a switch in Mike. He shared that his practice became more about the spiritual and not only focused on the workout factor. And when he joined teacher training, I was overjoyed to see him come into class glowing. When he shared his plans to open his own studio, I knew it would be uniquely Mike and totally magical.

From the moment I walked in, I knew I was right. From the decor in the lobby to beautiful and whimsical light fixtures, it was clearly designed and decorated with great attention to detail. The studio spaces are beautiful and just the right size for an intimate yet active asana practice. I also appreciate the meditation room, which is secluded enough to allow for a more immersive experience. It’s clear that Anew was designed for the yogi with any practice level, from beginner to seasoned practitioner. 

Jen and Mike have crafted a beautiful sanctuary. I am so blessed to be welcomed into its doors!

No. 189: Progress.

I have been working super hard on preparations for Big Fish. It’s a show with so many different moving parts: instruments, dancing, accents, acting… it can seem daunting!

At rehearsal tonight I was really giving my 100%. I had studied choreography on my own, gotten off book for the scenes we were rehearsing, and in general, just going for it.

And if felt good. It felt like something was beginning to click, the wheels were beginning to spin, and I had actually earned that spot on the stage.

Practice never makes perfect, but if you’re lucky, it does make progress.