At the end of each month, I take stock of the previous month. What went well? What did I learn? What brought me a simple joy? These monthly reports are a way to encourage myself to take delight in the littlest of things. I find that Ten Things I Loved allows me to always see the silver lining, even when there are hard moments in a month. And taking joy in the simple things is paramount to how I want to live, making 10 things an invaluable tool for me. Here’s this month’s simple pleasures.
Things I/ We Did
1. Hammock Time. So we have this hammock with a hoot of a history and, at the end of each summer, I am always disappointed that I didn’t spend more time in it. But, already, we have used the hammock more this month than all of last summer and we are all loving it! Happy and I climb in on warm, sunny afternoons with books all around us and just read and pretend to pluck the clouds out of the sky and eat them like marshmallows or cotton candy. All three of us then head out after dinner and throw the ball to Lola from the hammock, read, chat, and just savor the day. It is pretty fabulous.
2. Running again. You know I am a total fair weather runner– over 45 degrees/under 80/not raining are my parameters. So, I typically start running again every March and give it back up at the end of October, but spring took forever to spring this year so I just started back this month really. And that sliver of morning solo time to mull everything over from creative ideas to practical details is so good for my soul.
3. Preschool graduation. It is hard to believe that Happy’s time at his little preschool is done. It has been such a good place for him. This fall, he heads to transitional kindergarten. Anyway, his graduation was super sweet and actually a hoot because the kids were just so funny about it– they giggled and giggled and giggled which made us all giggle. The sweetest moment came when the school played a slideshow of their 2 four year old classes and the kids sat on the floor and screamed every kid’s name whose mug was on the screen at the time. It was so darling. The school fostered a great community environment, and all these kids loved each other so much. I’ll miss this group of kids and their parents as we all scatter (families from several different towns came to this preschool and now everyone begins schooling in their own towns, mostly).
4. Extended Family time. My sister’s kids are just one and two years older than Happy and when the three of them get together, good times are had (as well as some nice, healthy cousin spats). Our niece had a birthday party this past weekend, and we got to venture down to South Carolina to see my family which we don’t get to do nearly enough. And we also had time with BF’s family- for birthdays, preschool graduations and just because so lots of awesome family time.
5. Canoeing. Talk about setting way too high a bar on the first day of summer. Happy and I went canoeing. It was such a fun thing to do but, seriously, the day also included a hot dog for lunch, cotton candy at the end of school party, and a movie. Bar set entirely too high. For both of us.
6. Karina Dresses Brand Ambassador. I discovered Karina Dresses on Sally McGraw’s Already Pretty blog and they seemed kinda perfect for me– like the dress equivalent of my favorite cardigan, blue jean combo- practical, comfortable, and easy to care for- while also being way more stylish and interesting (and taking up less room in my suitcase when I travel). So as I was going through my style update early last year, I started my Karina Dress experience with the Megan. And loved it. And then the Karina Dress folks- who live their tagline of Dresses for Every Body- offered to be so supportive of different things I was doing– offering a dress giveaway to a Shine participant last year, a giveaway dress as a training and fundraising incentive to Circle de Luz’s Run Big Dream Big IV, and a dress for a mom attending each Right in the Middle. So as these conversations evolved and I had the delightful fortune of visiting the good peeps at Karina, the conversation turned to other ways we could support each other’s work. As it turns out, Karina Dresses has a brand ambassador program where they have people who they feel exemplify their brand sign-on as brand ambassadors and I was honored to be invited to be a part of the program. Basically it means that I can write a couple blog posts for their blog a month on the themes that are important to me and, when I do, I am “paid” in a dress. I am also able to provide my readers with a $30 off discount code (and I do not receive any payment or anything like that if you use the code) if you want your own Karina Dress (so far, I’ve worn the Megan and the Marisa and I love them both). Want to use the discount code? Just enter MOLR30 at checkout.
7. Pretty jewels. Circle de Luz celebrated its fifth birthday this spring and the amazing Board of Directors I work with treated me to a gift certificate to Erin McDermott Jewelry. I was able to order a couple beautiful necklaces that will make me feel oh so loved and oh so special every time I put them on. Having good friends that treat you well while also treating you to things you’d never splurge on yourself? My cup runneth over.
8. Letterpress Stationery I love sending hand written notes on pretty stationery so when I received a sweet note on this beautiful letterpress stationery, I had to order some for myself.
On the Bookshelf
9. Where Did You Go, Bernadette? A quirky fun mystery whose story is partially told in emails, letters, and other unusual ways. When a mother goes missing, daughter begins a search for her.
10. Reconstructing Amelia. A dark mystery that follows a mother trying to discover what led to her teenage daughter’s tragic death.