Snow, Its My Favorite

Growing up in California I didn’t spend much time in the snow. In fact, the first time I saw snow was in 1985 when it snowed the day after Christmas. I was amazed. There was just about one or two inches, but it was heavenly to me! I had been at my grandmas house and she woke me up early, because in the Bay Area snow is nearly unheard of. I was instantly in love!

When my kids were growing up we would take them to the snow multiple times during the winter. We would pack up our car and drive hours just to play in the snow. Sledding, snowball fights, building snowmen and making snow angels with the kids would take up all afternoon. Ate the end of our day the kids would be all tuckered out and we would drive home.

We moved to a small little town in the Eastern Sierras and lived there for two years. The winters there were freezing. We spent days indoors when it was far to cold to go outside, seriously like -27 some mornings. We would have feet, upon feet of snow. At 32 I had to teach myself how to drive in the snow, no fun! But we did make some amazing memories. I taught my older daughters to drive in the snow, I did fear for my life a couple times. We loved living in this little snow covered paradise.

We adopted my furry best friend while living in this tiny town. Bella came to live with us when she was 8 weeks old. This furry ball of energy captured my heart the moment I set my eyes on her. Bella fit right in with our family, her love of the snow was second to none! Watching her experience snow the first time was heartwarming. The prancing, running, sliding and dropping her jaw to the ground and eating mouthfuls of the white fluffy snow.

There is just something about the peacefulness that a white blanket of snow brings. Sometimes the quiet falling snow is the most deafening sound. Sitting at my desk and looking out the window to see my yard blanketed in snow brings me so much joy. It feels like a fresh start, second chances and do overs. When the snow melts the ground seems more fertile. Spring brings beautiful flowers and green trees. There is a beauty in nature that can never be truly expressed in words. Enjoy the silence. Enjoy the beauty. Remember its never to late for a do over, for a second chance. Life is a sweet journey, experience it with an open heart!

Making Memories With Grammie…

I love spending time with my grandchildren. Making memories with them has become one of my highest priorities. These sweet little people are miniature versions of my daughters.

Some of the fondest memories I have of my childhood were made in the kitchen with my Grandma. We would bake cookies, cakes and all different delicious treats. I am pretty sure my Grandmother is the one who instilled a love of baking deep within my soul. I feel the most comfortable and at home while cooking or baking in my kitchen. These are the memories I am trying to create with my grandchildren as well.

My grandson, Gabriel, loves to help Grammie in the kitchen when I visit. I let him do the easy things (he’s only 4) and always praise his efforts. During one of my recent trips to visit we made “sparkle cookies”. This sweet boy was insistent that he wanted sparkle cookies, so this grammie was going to give him just what he wanted! I found these adorable sparkly unicorn chips at Target.

Gabriel and I spent the morning of Halloween baking these amazing sparkle cookies and we had the best time. From adding the eggs, to stirring in the chips my sweet grandson was all in! We made these huge cookies and then rolled them in sprinkles. Nothing warms a Grandmas heart more than bringing joy to her sweet grandchild heart. Gabriel was so happy. Grammie was so happy.

These precious moments with my grandchildren will only last but a fleeting moment. Soon these babes will be grown and probably not want to bake with Grammie anymore. As long as they are young and have the desire, Grammie will continue to make treasured memories in the kitchen with them.

The Story of Who I am Today Pt.2

I am pretty sure being the mom of adults is bittersweet for everyone. I love that my children are all grown and can take care of themselves. However, I miss having my house full of little people running around. I miss the tiny fingerprints on windows, children’s books strewn around and listening to Barney on both the television and in my car daily.

Our children grow up and become adults and we are left with a quiet home. Sometimes too quiet. So leaving my firstborn in that airport was hard, probably harder than when she moved out. Bittersweet.

After my plane was in the air I decided to watch a movie. I felt great. Life was as close to perfect as it could get for me at that moment. I decided on watching Crazy Rich Asians. If you haven’t seen this movie, its hilarious and I recommend you watch it, like now.

Approximately fifteen minutes into the movie I started to not feel great. I was hot, the tops of my feet hurt and I just felt off. I requested a cup of ice chips from the flight attendant, which seemed to help for a few minutes. The last thing I remember is the sweet girl next to me asking if I wanted more ice chips. The next moment I came to and was on the floor of the plane with a man on top of me giving me cpr, and another man by my head talking to me. Apparently my heart stopped and I had been unconscious for about five minutes and no heartbeat for close to three minutes. I died. My blood pressure bottomed out, my heart stopped, I died. After numerous attempts to stabilize me an in flight doctor made the decision to emergency land the plane and get me off. I spent the next three days in Billings, Montana.

Everyone on the plane was extremely friendly. The two men who helped me were doctors. One was an emergency room doctor in Seattle, the other a surgeon in Seattle. There was also a RN present who helped to keep me calm. When you die on an airplane, it tends to cause some major anxiety!

I was taken to the hospital by ambulance once the plane landed. It wasn’t just cold there, it was bitter cold, -10 to be exact! Billings was in the middle of a massive snow and ice storm that would close the airport and ground all flights for the next two days, thus leaving me alone in the hospital in another state, I had no friends or family in Montana, but God provided both friends and family for me while I was there. From the hospital staff who would come in and visit with me, the airline personnel checking on me and a sweet friend of mine who has several friends in the area put the word out on her Facebook that I was in need, and the out pour of love and kindness was overwhelming.

My family tried in vain to get tickets to be with me, but I honestly think everything happens for a reason. I had time to reflect while in that hospital bed alone. Reflect on what is important, what I want, who I want to be and what I want out of my life. I had already laid the groundwork motivationally. I just needed to now figure out what I wanted for my career, my health, my relationships and what my goals would be in 2019.

During my time in the hospital I had three blood transfusions and two iron transfusions. Since I have been back home I have had two iron transfusions. My health has improved, but I will always suffer from chronic anemia and must be monitored for the rest of my life.

People talk about life being short, but in all honesty we don’t realize that our life could be cut short at any moment. Say the things you need to say. Forgive the people you need to forgive. Love your family and friends everyday as if its your last. Forgive yourself. Love yourself. Give yourself permission to move on, to move forward and leave your hurt in the past. Believe me, you are worth it and it is so freeing when you finally let go of any negativity you have held onto.

I’m not perfect today. I still get upset, I leave my coffee cup in the bathroom (sorry Brie), sometimes I eat cold pizza for breakfast and Hershey kisses for dinner. Life is about living, loving and enjoying everything. This is my wish for you friend, that you are able to live and love freely in 2020.

The Story of Who I am Today Pt 1

Life is short. Life is precious. We hear those two phrases all the time, usually from people who have no idea exactly what they are talking about. Seldom do we actually hear those words from someone who personally survived a near death experience. I survived.

2018 I fell in love with my best friend, the only person who will always be there for me, the one person who walks side by side with me every single day. Myself. My journey of self love began when I read a book I had on my shelf for almost six months, Girl, Wash Your Face- by Rachel Hollis. Life changing for me.

I think you have to be ready to make a change in your life before you can truly move forward from past hurts, habits and hangups. I was ready. I submerged myself in all the motivational and self help books I could find. My perspective and outlook changed dramatically in 2018.

In 2017 my oldest daughter moved to the East Coast with her husband. We have always been close, even living two states apart we never went more than a couple months without seeing each other and we talk everyday. This was not only hard for myself, but also her sister who she is extremely close to as well. I had never visited the East Coast and was looking forward to the new experience. So, Christmas 2018, after 22 months of not seeing my oldest daughter I flew back east to visit.

I have always had a fear of flying. The first time I flew was when I was 7. My parents took me to Disneyland and the flight was less than an hour long. It was amazing, and I remember I got these cool little wings from the flight attendant. Nothing happened on that flight, but it would be 30 years before I would fly again.

My daughter and I had an amazing time along with her husband. We visited several states and I was able to check things off my bucket list. My son in law was awesome, planned an entire day in New York so that I could see as many things as possible. New York City Macy’s was at the top of my list.

As a little girl I would watch Miracle on 34th Street and dream of visiting this fabulous department store. I must say, the NYC Macy’s did not disappoint, it is so large you could get lost inside. Visiting at Christmas was an absolute dream come true.

New Years Eve 2018 our visit had come to an end. We woke up early and headed to the airport. I had a 7am flight back to the West Coast and plans for my New Years Eve. The sunrise that morning was like nothing I had ever seen in my life. The sun rising above the river looked like a glimmering ball of gold. Everyone in the airport and on the plane was talking about how magnificent this sunrise was.

Seated on the plane I felt an unfamiliar peace. I was not anxious, I was grateful. The girl who sat next to me was 15 and from Seattle. We talked about everything we experienced from our vacations. As the plane began to take off, I sat looking out the window at the amazing sun over the river. With a grateful heart and feeling so much peace I began to thank God for such an amazing vacation and that I was able to spend so much quality time with my East Coast kids…

To be continued…

Good Bye 2019… Hello 2020

What a year this has been! This year has been full of ups and downs, accomplishments and setbacks, love and loss, through it all I have grown and become a stronger and more determined woman.

I am looking forward to accomplishing new goals and creating a life for myself that I both love and look forward to. I am not one who makes resolutions. I believe we set ourselves up for failure when we make large outrageous resolutions for ourselves. Instead, I prefer to make small promises to myself. This year I promise to treat my body like I love it. This year I promise to nurture the relationships that are so important to me. This year I promise to live my best life!

Life is so short and precious. Make sure to let those you love know how important they are to you. Tomorrow is not promised to any of us, and you never know when the last time you talk to someone will be the last time. I personally had a near death experience last New Years Eve and it changed my life. I will share my story soon, today I am focusing on how thankful I am to be alive, given a second chance to love my family and continue to pursue all my goals!

I want to wish each of you a very Happy New Years!