Catalyst 132 – It Is Never About Meeting Halfway

Catalyst One Hundred and Thirty-Three is: What’s one lesson you would give a married couple?

Journaling Reads:
Many people I’ve met over the years have given me relationship and marriage advice but I think it too often depends on the dynamics of each couple. The one thing I’ve learned from my personal experience is that it’s never about 50/50. Sometimes one person needs more help or attention and sometimes it’s the other. you go with the flow and always give 100% without keeping score. If each of you do that, it’s a good path for happiness.


Catalyst 131 – I am so very very Content

Catalyst One Hundred and Thirty-One is: Describe (or show) yourself at this point in your life.

Journaling Reads:
It might not be sexy but what I feel more than anything at this moment is so very content. I feel like I am full of peace and joy but I also feel calm. I feel my career, my family, my art, and life in general are exactly where I wish them to be at this moment. And I do not take that for granted for a second. I work out daily. I spend time with my kids. I do all my work and fulfill my obligations. But I also know I am so lucky. And things will change. Tougher times will come. So I celebrate this moment of contentment.


Catalyst 130 – Miracles Happen – 21 Years Later

Catalyst One Hundred and Thirty is: Tell us about a Favorite/special piece of clothing.

Journaling Reads:
I have saved this pair of jeans for 21 years. They traveled with me from Turkey to Pittsburgh to New York to San Diego and to the Bay Area. People told me to throw them out several times. “You can never fit the jeans you wore at 17.” I heard again and again. But I couldn’t bear to give up. And now that I am finally losing all this weight, I can finally fit into them once again (they don’t close just yet but still.) miracles do happen.


Catalyst 129 – Many Many Journals full of Gratitude

Catalyst One Hundred and Twenty-Nine is: Describe a family keepsake you have or hope to have?

Journaling Reads:
I am not one of those people who collects things to leave to my kids. I have the scrap albums which they may or may not want one day. The only thing I hope they will cherish and want to keep are the gratitude journals we’re keeping. I already cherish them deeply. Even keeping the practice of gratitude will be enough for me. I am so thankful we have these to look back upon.

Catalyst 128 – I will Always be At Home with You

Catalyst One Hundred and Twenty-Eight is: What are you (or would you be) giving your children that you wish you’d had?

Journaling Reads:
When I was a little girl, my mom always worked. When I got home from school, she wasn’t there and it made me sad. I vowed back then that I would always be home for my kids when they came home and wanted to talk about their day. My mom was wonderful but I did wish she was around more.

Catalyst 127 – Free

Catalyst One Hundred and Twenty-Seven is: What’s your word/focus for 2011?

“Let go of the past, be free to do anything you desire. Anything.” My word for 2011 is free. I plan to let go of all of what holds me down from my past and also let go of all the ideas I have in my head of what I can and cannot be in the future. My plan is to work on whatever I need to work on so I can clean the slate. Be free of any burden. Free to do anything. Truly.


Catalyst 125 – Love

Catalyst One Hundred and Twenty-Five is: Write a love letter.

My love letter went to my husband for father’s day. It was long and deep and I worked hard to express the depth of my love and gratitude for him. I love and adore my husband and the life we’ve created together. I consider myself very very lucky. And I wanted him to know this. I made this little card and put my letter inside the card. On the back, I stamped “love.”

Catalyst 124 – The Best Part of Having Two Kids

Catalyst One Hundred and Twenty-Four is: What makes you happy?

I made this layout back in May but it’s a perfect example of what makes me happiest in my life. Seeing my kids and my husband and my parents and sister laugh. Seeing the people I love happy is the biggest source of joy in my life.

Catalyst 123 – Don’t Wait to Ask

Catalyst One Hundred and Twenty-Three is: Is there something about someone that you’ve always wanted to know but have never asked?

A few years ago, I took this amazing class that completely transformed my life. Shortly after, I was back home in Turkey and I was telling my family about the class. My grandmother listened intently and said she wished she’d taken the class and that she had some big regrets about her life. I remember making a mental note to follow up with her, at the time. But I never did. And, this last winter, I lost my grandmother. So now I will never get to ask. So I wanted to make my art be a reminder that you should always ask. Right now. Do not put it off. Do not assume. Ask.

Catalyst 122 – Live with Passion

Catalyst One Hundred and Fifteen is: Create a postcard. Who’s it going to?

I took this photo a while ago and I loved it. I love so many things about it that I cannot even begin to explain. But I wanted to take this photo, make a card of it and send it myself to remind myself that each day is ephemeral and that I need to live it with full emotion and passion and suck everything out of each of my days. To make the very best of them.

Catalyst 121 – My Parents

Catalyst One Hundred and Twenty-One is: How was/is your relationship with your parents?

The Weekly Gratitude entry I did in July addressed this perfectly so I didn’t want to do something else just for the sake of it.

Journaling Reads:
I have been blessed with the most amazing parents.

I must admit that I have not always been actively aware of this fact. As a child, I spent most of my time wondering how I ended up in this family where I felt like I obviously didn’t belong. It’s not that they were bad people, it’s just that they were so very different than I was. They had different priorities and ideas of fun than I did.

So I did a lot of sulking, a lot of doing my own thing and taking these amazing parents for granted. Yet, they never gave up on me and supported all my crazy and far-fetched dreams. When I told them I wanted to study in the United States, they did every single thing in their power to make it happen for me.

Even though they don’t really understand what I do and sometimes they aren’t sure why I make the choices I make, they are always 100% behind me and they are first to cheer me on. When I falter, they are the first to rush in an help me. I’ve always known that my parents were supportive but it’s only in the last few years that I’ve come to full appreciate them.

Catalyst 120 – You Have Arrived

Catalyst One Hundred and Twenty is: what are you waiting for?

When I read this catalyst, my first answer was “Nothing.” A few months ago Jake was telling me to stop worrying. He said, “If you’re wondering how life is going to turn out, stop wondering, this is how it turned out. You’re living it.” And as opposed to what one might think, this sentence made me feel overwhelmingly grateful. I felt calm and happy. And peaceful. At this juncture, I am really happy with my life. My kids, my husband, our home, my work. Everything is in a good place and I am not wishing for a better tomorrow or waiting for the time to be just right for something. I am just working on enjoying this very moment. Reminding myself that I am not waiting for anything, I have arrived.