Stories from 2018 – 41 – Backyard Camping Birthday Party

A good friend of Nathaniel had his tenth birthday a few weeks ago. It was in their backyard and the theme was camping. They went above and beyond to make it special for the boys. 

After dinner, they all got to watch Princess Bride. 

before dinner, they played with tons and tons of boxes. All the kids said it was one of the best parts.

at night they slept in tents in their own sleeping bags. It was quite lovely.

It was Nathaniel’s first sleepover ever. He had a wonderful time. We are super grateful and hope he continues to have special memories like this with his good friends.


Stories from 2018 is a year-long project for 2018. You can read more about my projects for 2018here.

Stronger Than Before – 42

 

Weekly Intention: This week is a mixed week. I have to work all Tuesday for an all-day meeting on Wednesday. I have to go to the high school on Monday night. I have a hair appointment on Thursday night and the kids have no school on Friday but David has a high school shadow. I also really want to knock off some of my todos this week. Personal ones. Things I’ve been dragging around for weeks. I have to make some serious forward momentum on some of my work too since I will be going to Zurich in a few weeks. So here’s my intention for this week: I will do as much as possible, i will give myself grace for the rest, i will make some plans for the next two months so I understand my priorities, and I will focus on what’s in front of me the most. I will be kind. Kind kind kind. This is what i really want more than anything else. I want to be kind to me, kind to the kids, kind to Jake, kind to colleagues, kind to every single person. 

This month’s intention is: Stronger than Before: Here’s your chance to give it one last push before the year’s over. Where are you still wanting to be stronger? How can you help yourself get stronger than before? How can you take things one notch higher? One notch deeper? OK so my plan here is to look back at the stuff I’d written in January of OLW and really figure out what I haven’t focused on so I can do more here. [ I didn’t do this so I will keep it here for this week.]

One way I will stretch this week:  the appeals committee work and the onboarding will both stretch me.

One boundary I will set this week: i will take all of Tuesday to read packets, i will make sure i can be at home reading.

This week, I will focus on pleasing: me still, i need it.

One new thing I will learn this week: what my priorities are for the rest of 2018, focus on a word for 2019 and personal goals for 2019.

One area where I will go deeper this week: december summit.

What do I need to sit with this week? how i’m feeling and why it’s so hard on me.

I am looking forward to: the kids coming home earlier now that cross country is over.

This week’s challenges: evening commitments are always hard for me. Getting back to exercising is also going to be hard. And finally the unpredictable Wednesday.

Top Goals: 

  • Work:  december summit, wednesday’s speech, year end goals.
  • Personal: get back to routine, journal, draw, eat well, exercise and sleep
  • Family: make a plan for each kid. cook again.

I will focus on my values:

  • Love: take stock, figure out what’s getting in the way, make a plan.
  • Learn:  learn what i am missing the most and how i can bring it back in.
  • Peace: peace with how i’m feeling, accepting what is.
  • Service: to myself still.
  • Gratitude: for my wonderful husband.

This week, I want to remember: that things will get better. i can do this.


Stronger Than Before is a year-long project for 2018. You can read more about my projects for 2018 here.

Weekly Reflection 2018 – 41


How I got Stronger this week: I want to be honest, this was a tough week for me. There has been many tough periods this year and I appear to be in the middle of another one. I feel like I am balancing too many things and they are all falling apart. At least I feel like they are falling apart. Each individual thing is small and possibly inconsequential but when I add it all together it feels like an avalanche and I just can’t breathe. I am not exactly sure how to find my way out at the moment. But I haven’t given up yet. I am trying. And I guess that’s going to have to do for this week.

Top Goals Review:  

  • Work:  i did get started on other things, and worked on the december summit a little bit.
  • Personal: i can’t really say that i got back to routine, i journaled only once, didn’t draw, ate i’d say mediocre at best and likely just not well, i exercised but not enough and i slept so so
  • Family: i spent a teeny tiny amount of time with david on his project, and did not find a volunteer opportunity for David yet but i did hug them a bunch. though not enough. never enough.

I celebrate: making it through this week.

I am grateful for:  my husband who showers me with kindness more often than i deserve.

Karen’s Points: this week i had a bunch of morning commitments so all I got in was one body pump and one 1.5 mile run.

A Change I embraced: I rested a lot this week, I needed it even though I had a lot of work.

I let go of: so much this week. i just couldn’t work crazy hours after last week. so i paced myself.

Core Desired Feelings Check-in:

  • Fresh: i got to meet with an old friend and it was lovely. 
  • Magical: getting to work from home both monday and friday was awesome.
  • Lighter: i don’t feel light right now. so much so that i feel like i have to pick light as my word next year.
  • True: i am working so hard at getting better.

Where I chose Joy: i worked at home when i needed it.

I showed up for:  nathaniel at school this week.

A Mistake I made this week: i have been dropping the ball a lot but i am trying to catch up.

What I tolerated this week: just overall feeling of being down. 

My mood this week was: exhausted. dejected and just worn out.

I forgive myself for: being where i am. this is how i feel right now. 

What I love right now: my husband. the good weather. kindness of everyone.


Weekly Reflection is a year-long project for 2018. You can read more about my projects for 2018 here.

Moments from this Week – 41

more from our weekend away. adventures in the backyard. and just reading and reading.

i love the beach so very much.

so grateful for sunny california days!!


Moments from this Week 2018 is a year-long project for 2018. You can read more about my projects for 2018 here.

Books I Read This Week 2018 – 41

This might be the week I read the fewest books in all of 2018 so far. It was a long week so I knew it was unlikely I would be able to read much but it’s still better than nothing.

I thought Charlotte Walsh Likes To Win  was ok. I wasn’t amazing but it didn’t make me upset as it has many others if you read the reviews on amazon.

I then read Wildcard which I knew would be an easy read and it was.

I started the  Muse of Nightmares  as soon as it came out. Laini Taylor is so so so talented. Her books are a joy to read and are unlike any other. And this was no exception. 

Here’s to a much better reading week next week.


Books I Read this Week 2018 is a year-long project for 2018. You can read more about my projects for 2018 here.

Stronger Than Before – 41

 

Weekly Intention: This week is the week when I regroup and focus forward. The big event is now over and I can start planning and working on all the other things that are happening throughout the rest of this year. So my plan this week is to get organized, to rest a lot and then start taking some small steps. Pay attention to my kids again, to my own life again, to my sweet husband again. The goal this week is to work less and be home more.

This month’s intention is: Stronger than Before: Here’s your chance to give it one last push before the year’s over. Where are you still wanting to be stronger? How can you help yourself get stronger than before? How can you take things one notch higher? One notch deeper? OK so my plan here is to look back at the stuff I’d written in January of OLW and really figure out what I haven’t focused on so I can do more here.

One way I will stretch this week:  I will focus on taking extra time at home.

One boundary I will set this week: i will work as little as possible and still be effective. i will leave work early almost daily.

This week, I will focus on pleasing: me.

One new thing I will learn this week: how to start pacing myself for the end of the year.

One area where I will go deeper this week: write the feedback form.

What do I need to sit with this week? how i’m feeling and how i want life to go.

I am looking forward to: some quieter weeks.

This week’s challenges: i have a bit of traveling around this week, to school and then to another office but i don’t expect any of it to be too stressful hopefully.

Top Goals: 

  • Work:  get started on other things, and december summit.
  • Personal: get back to routine, journal, draw, eat well, exercise and sleep
  • Family: spend time with david on his project, find a volunteer opportunity and hug them all so so much.

I will focus on my values:

  • Love: pause and love my life.
  • Learn:  how to get some balance again.
  • Peace: peace with winter coming.
  • Service: to myself this week.
  • Gratitude: for my wonderful life.

This week, I want to remember: that there’s time, i will be okay.


Stronger Than Before is a year-long project for 2018. You can read more about my projects for 2018 here.

Weekly Reflection 2018 – 40


How I got Stronger this week: This might have been one of the longest weeks I’ve had this whole year. I was long and draining and I am grateful that work went well but I am exhausted both physically and emotionally. Saturday’s news just drained the very last bits I had in me and I’ve been in self care mood ever since. I wasn’t even sure I was going to write here today but this space is my little grounding space. So I come, I write, so I can remember. This was a tough week and may we never forget what’s possible and how much progress there still is to make. 

Top Goals Review:  

  • Personal: i got a mediocre amount of sleep, a lot of nightmares this week.
  • Family: i loved my people so much.
  • Work: i was all in all the way

I celebrate: the offsite being over and that it went well.

I am grateful for:  being at home and getting to rest a bit.

Karen’s Points: just one body pump this week.

A Change I embraced: oh jeez. all of this week. was intense. i embraced it.

I let go of: trying to get anything done besides the offsite. it can all wait.

Core Desired Feelings Check-in:

  • Fresh: doing this offsite for the first time.
  • Magical: being in carmel was magical and lovely.
  • Lighter: i feel lighter now that it’s over.
  • True: i am still really tired and worn out. and will take some time to recover.

Where I chose Joy: i stayed, i showed up, i participated.

I showed up for:  work mostly.

A Mistake I made this week: i made many little ones. 

What I tolerated this week: exhaustion. mental and emotional (and physical.) yet again.

My mood this week was: execution-focused and then very sad on saturday. 

I forgive myself for: being sad. 

What I love right now: i am looking forward to what I hope will be a quieter October.


Weekly Reflection is a year-long project for 2018. You can read more about my projects for 2018 here.

Moments from this Week – 40

this week has photos from rock climbing adventures. my birthday. our weekend away in cayucos.

oh and back to school night for nathaniel.

such a rich week full of wonderful things.


Moments from this Week 2018 is a year-long project for 2018. You can read more about my projects for 2018 here.

Books I Read This Week 2018 – 40

 

 

 

 

 

I had a so-so week.

I started with Dear Committee Members  which was funny and I laughed and laughed. 

I then read The Line that Held Us which wasn’t the kind of book I’d normally have picked up at all but I liked it. 

I thought the The Dinner List was sold as a lighter book than it actually was. I still liked it.

Fear was what you think it would be.

I needed some laughter after the Woodward book so I grabbed David Sedaris live at Carnegie Hall and laughed and laughed.

I was excited to then read The Mermaid and Mrs. Hancock but about 3/4ths of the way through I still was not a fan and decided to finally stop reading it.

I then bounced around many many books, finally settling on An Absolutely Remarkable Thing which was fabulous, fantastic and just the best! Both of these brothers are so talented.

Here’s to a good reading week next week.


Books I Read this Week 2018 is a year-long project for 2018. You can read more about my projects for 2018 here.

Stories from 2018 – 39 – Barcelona Part 4

I am so grateful that we got to spend several days in Barcelona. This will be the last of my installments about our vacation and Barcelona. 

more on La Sagrada Familia. 

the doors were magnificent.

so much detail

some parts so modern and others so detailed and classical.


and these stunning doors.


they blew me away.

but of course my favorite was the light. 

i couldn’t stop taking photos of the stained glass windows. 

look at that amazing light.

can’t you almost feel it?.

i could have sat there all day.


it still gives me chills.


Then we went to this fountain and music show, it lasted two hours and was amazing.


light, water and music, what more can we ask for?


here’s the before with everyone waiting.


we took the subway there 🙂


on our last day we saw some street art. 


on our last morning we went to this awesome maze. 


the kids had a lot of fun.

and then we went home to pack and we were grateful for a full vacation and for finally being ready to go home to our own beds. so grateful for this incredible vacation.


Stories from 2018 is a year-long project for 2018. You can read more about my projects for 2018here.

Stronger Than Before – 40

 

Weekly Intention: This is the week I’ve been working so hard for, for the last few weeks. We have a big offsite all week, so I expect this week to be early mornings, long nights and a lot of running around. My intention this week is to connect with my kids as much as I can in the early part of the week and then work as hard as I can when I will be away. I want to pace myself and do what I need to do to take care of myself. Let’s see what I can do.

This month’s intention is: Stronger than Before: Here’s your chance to give it one last push before the year’s over. Where are you still wanting to be stronger? How can you help yourself get stronger than before? How can you take things one notch higher? One notch deeper? Hmm this is an interesting one. I expect October to be a reasonably tough month so it’s good for me to think about how I can take it a notch deeper. 

One way I will stretch this week:  I think the hours alone will stretch me this week.

One boundary I will set this week: i will try my best to get sleep. I think it will be challenging.

This week, I will focus on pleasing: the head of our group. this is her week.

One new thing I will learn this week: how to put one of these on.

One area where I will go deeper this week: i think maybe i’ll take notes for my big event coming in December.

What do I need to sit with this week? i will just have to sit with not having much alone or recovery time this week. 

I am looking forward to: being at carmel even if I will be working. 

This week’s challenges: sleep. peace.

Top Goals: 

  • Work:  be all in.
  • Personal: get sleep as often as i can. take care of myself.
  • Family: love them hard.

I will focus on my values:

  • Love: love all the opportunities I get.
  • Learn:  what makes an offsite work well.
  • Peace: peace with being present.
  • Service: to work this week.
  • Gratitude: for kindness of others.

This week, I want to remember: that we worked hard and now we just do what we can.


Stronger Than Before is a year-long project for 2018. You can read more about my projects for 2018 here.

Weekly Reflection 2018 – 39


How I got Stronger this week: I tried to work out as often as possible this week which was reasonably challenging because I worked a lot. A LOT. but I also hung out with my loves and even had a quick dinner with a good friend which was lovely. I was out socializing most of the weekend. Growing, learning, stretching. 

Top Goals Review: 

  • Personal: i did the best I could.
  • Family: I was quite present for the most part I think.
  • Work: October occupied all of this week indeed.

I celebrate: getting the planning process out the door.

I am grateful for:  a really lovely weekend away

Karen’s Points: one run, 3 body pumps this week. not awful. 

A Change I embraced: going to Tahoe was a change and I really did my best to truly enjoy it.

I let go of: trying to take alone time while in Tahoe. Too much going on.

Core Desired Feelings Check-in:

  • Fresh: our weekend in tahoe is my fresh of the week. 
  • Magical: watching the sun come up on Saturday over the beautiful lake.
  • Lighter: i felt light and peaceful while we were away. especially thanks to intermittent internet.
  • True: i am still really tired and worn out. but i am also grateful.

Where I chose Joy: going away for the weekend was really joyful.

I showed up for:  my family. and at work. and even my friend a bit this week.

A Mistake I made this week: I wasn’t as kind as i should have been, my goal is to always always be kinder than necessary but I fail as often as i succeed.

What I tolerated this week: exhaustion. mental and emotional (and physical.)

My mood this week was: peaceful on the lake. 

I forgive myself for: having unnecessary anxiety. it’s such a part of me, I don’t know how to not have it.

What I love right now: i am so looking forward to all the books that are scheduled to come out in October.


Weekly Reflection is a year-long project for 2018. You can read more about my projects for 2018 here.