Advertisements
Tag Archives: Thanksgiving

Grateful?

25 Nov

joy

How do you stay grateful when you are living with Stage 4 cancer? It’s an interesting conundrum and it’s not that easy. I’ve read a few blogs on how people are grateful they got cancer…umm, no. My mind is tossed between living each day as if it’s your last yet being a little stuck in a place with many responsibilities. There are (many) days that I wish I could quit my job and conquer, or at least try,  to do all the things I wish I could have done or have wanted to do or to just be there for each of my kids following them around, holding their hands and hugging them (I’m sure they’d all love that, haha). Unfortunately since I am not independently wealthy I have to modify…a lot, and sometimes it gets sad for me because there are so many things I want to do with the time I have left whether it’s a little or a lot. Time is a funny thing. I was grateful to read this from author Ann Voskamp this week, ‘You have only one decision every day: how will you use your time? Sometimes the best use of your time is to stand and listen to a clock. We’re all terminal-and we all just want a number. What size is this bucket of time? How many days will I actually get? The hands of the clock are bound by the decisions of our hands.’ Day to day, minute by minute we decide. Yes we have to work and earn a living, but in that space of time is there something or someone to be grateful for? We have today. Can we be that something or someone for another person? Contentment stems from gratefulness, being grateful leads to joy and joy can change the world.

For this Thanksgiving weekend I’m not thankful to have cancer again but God has been so good through it all. Lately I have to say my heart’s been hurting a little because the days fly by so quickly and I feel like time’s just slipping away. ‘Heartache forces us to embrace God out of desperate, urgent need. God is never closer than when your heart is aching.’~Joni Eareckson Tada. I know I have to focus on gratitude for what God’s done through the cancer because it’s what gives me hope and I have to say that many of the things I’m grateful for today are because cancer has opened my eyes to them. I’m grateful that from the constant and consistent prayers of family, friends, and even strangers I have experienced the peace that passes all understanding. ‘Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life.’~Phil 4:7, MSG.  I’m grateful for the people I am surrounded by who lift me up and encourage me and for the strength to let go of toxic relationships and focus on life giving ones. I am grateful that I have found a love that brings me joy and lots of laughter. I’m grateful that having cancer helps me focus on what’s truly important and therefore helps me more readily release the stupid things that stress me out. Through any adversity there is opportunity to grow in faith and in character if you see it that way and I am grateful that I have peace and joy and that my faith and dependence on God grows stronger because I have no control over circumstances. I am incredibly grateful that I have a God that I trust who offers me hope for not just me, but for my family; He knows my joys and my heartbreak and I know He hears my prayers and loves me. Whatever happens in the future, He’s got this and that is the greatest reason for gratitude.

Today I wear Fenty Beauty Gloss Bomb Universal Lip Luminizer. Of course I had to try something from the popular new Fenty Beauty by Rihanna brand and of course it had to be a lip product. I chose this because she literally only has this one gloss which is supposed to look great on all skin tones, well, it does. It is called Fenty Glow and it is a soft rosy gold color, great shine, great moisture, great color, and yes, universal. Gratitude looks great on everyone. Cheers!

Advertisements

The Best Is Yet to Come

25 Nov

annabeach

The class song for my high school senior class was ‘The Best Was Yet To Come’ by Bryan Adams which I had the opportunity to sing at my high school graduation. One of the lines says, ‘ain’t it funny how time flies when the best is yet to come.’ It’s been almost 30 years later and after celebrating my birthday last month and now headed into the holidays and a new year I find myself sitting and reflecting on those words; maybe because I heard a DJ on the radio say that phrase recently…the best is yet to come. Is it? After graduation has the best come, did I miss it? Do we live in some type of twilight zone of expectation and anticipation for whatever the ‘best’ is that’s coming? I think we do. Is that ok? I think it’s fine as long as we’re not missing the people and moments that are in our face.

Our country just went through one of the ugliest and craziest presidential elections of all time. There has been so much passion and negativity which has continued on; the country feels divided, some feel hopeless for a positive future. Well, what about the kids? When I was growing up I felt like the world was my oyster, my parents constantly encouraged me and told me I could do anything I set my mind on. They also taught me that nothing is ever handed to you, that you had to work hard and stay persistent. I believed the best was yet to come. I have teen kids and listening to them talk to each other and their friends is eye opening. Instead of the ‘best is yet to come’, their attitude is ‘live for today cuz it’s all we have’ along with ‘the world is on a downward spiral, who cares.’ During and post election along with all the other happenings of our country and world, if our children are listening to all the adults and watching the news than why would they believe the best was yet to come? Why the entitled youth, the instant gratification kids we get so annoyed with? I believe alot of it has to do with the negative news and adults they are surrounded by. Instead of anticipation for an awesome future we have ‘media-ed’ the youth into a fearful future with no jobs, no health insurance, no equality and really no hope for ‘the best is yet to come.’ I want to be positive. I want my kids to be excited about the possibilities of ‘next’. I want my kids to work hard and be kind and be positive for what’s coming with no fear. I have learned the opposite of being fearful is not just to be brave. The opposite of fear is trust and faith; trust in the ultimate One who has a plan and faith in the One who is in control of the future. Trust makes me brave.’Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, whose trust is in the Lord. He is like a tree planted by water that sends out its roots by the stream and does not fear when heat comes for its leaves remain green, and is not anxious in the year of drought, for it does not cease to bear fruit.’~Jeremiah 17:7-8

So what did I find after graduating high school? Has it been the best life? Cancer, divorce, job changes, lay offs? Yes. Life is crazy, painful, beautiful, challenging, heart breaking, and amazing. I cannot say that it’s always been butterflies and unicorns, stonesactually quite the opposite but holy smokes, the places I’ve been, the emotions I’ve been able to feel to the depths and edges of my heart, and the people, all the people that have stepped into (and out of) my life…wow! I am so grateful. Teach your kids gratitude because every single day there is always a ‘best’ part. ‘Grow old along with me! The best is yet to be, the last of life, for which the first was made. Our times are in his hand who saith, a whole I planned, youth shows but half; Trust God:See all, nor be afraid!’~Robert Browning

Today I wear LipSense lipstick in Gingerbread. I was introduced to these long lasting lipsticks by a friends and I LOVE them. I am usually sensitive to long wear lip products and I also have chronically dry lips. These are amazing. You can only buy from distributors so if you want to try one email me through the blog! I chose this color which is a light pinky brown mainly for the name. The color is easy to wear for most skin tones but gingerbread because it’s countdown to Christmas 🙂 Cheers!

Inspirations

24 Nov

2012-07-02 11.07.09

This week’s topic for my blogging group GBE2 is inspirations; movies, music, people, whatever or whomever is inspiring us lately. Well, this list could go on and on for me but not with famous musicians, athletes, movie stars, and not even Oprah. Really, just the people around me. My friends Dawn, Leanna, Frances, overcoming some difficult youth situations and using those experiences to help others (me in particular). Your incredible support astounds me. My friends Callie and Grace, supermoms for different reasons, your strength and courage in your daily situations blow me away. Thank you for your friendship always. Stacie who juggles work, family, and volunteerism but still has time to listen and support my family.  Lissa, despite her circumstances, continues to push to be a better mom; whose friendship goes above and beyond. Bev who adopted a beautiful little girl just as her son was leaving for college. Jill, inspiring me to bring ‘Anna’ back. Lori and Donna whose work in the communities never cease, amazing what one person can do. Michelle and Melissa, two fiercely strong women who stood by their men while juggling work and family, through all of the ups and downs of their cancer treatments. Steve and Paula, two mentors I look up to, all love, no judgment. Dr. Rubin, Dr. Menaldi, and Marie, whose belief in my voice and spirit to overcome never wavered. To my beautiful radiation partner and friend ‘B’ who despite being in severe pain and sitting in a hospital all week, still sends me notes of encouragement. ‘B’, you are one of the kindest and strongest men I know, so glad you’ve been a part of my life. Jen(Chapstick), who checks in consistently, always positive, always encouraging, always making me laugh. To my crazy friend who quotes movie lines and song lyrics, you inspire me to ‘stay gold’ (The Outsiders), and laugh. To my awesome kids who make me want to be a better mom and a better person all the time. My incredibly talented brother who continues to follow his dreams. Although there are many ups and downs, you always land on your feet (and always land a gig too). You are incredible and those times you may stop believing in yourself (nature of your industry), I will always believe in you. My parents, who left everything and everyone they knew for a better life for their kids. It wasn’t always easy but we were never in want or need of anything…plus look at how good we turned out (haha).

Like I said, I am surrounded by inspiring people, too many to mention. All different, all from different backgrounds, all with a story. There are many famous people we could look to for inspiration but I think it’s just as easy to look at the pool of people surrounding you. Everyone brings something to the world and I believe those around us, if even for a season, are there for a reason. ‘People, even more than things, have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed, and redeemed. Never throw out anyone.’ ~Audrey Hepburn. Thank you all and Happy Thanksgiving!

Today I am not going to name a lipstick color but recommend you go to Sephora.com.  This is the best time of year for lipstick sets. Since the holidays are upon us many cosmetic companies put gift sets together of their most popular products in the most popular colors. Some are small versions but some are full sized, but all of the sets are specially priced and a lot less expensive than normal. NOW is the time to try something new! Cheers!

Changes and Thankfulness

18 Nov

When I started my sales career after college over 21 years ago I was assigned a university hospital as one of my accounts. I remember being fresh out of college and placed in a city (and state for that matter) that I was unfamiliar with to begin ‘adulthood’. There were many changes like a phone bill, an electric bill, rent. etc; and I remember that first week driving through this college campus to get to the hospital to do my job. I cried. It was a huge transition and as I looked out at the college kids walking around with their backpacks (and some in pajamas), while I was in my suit, I couldn’t remember why I was ever ‘stressed’ in college, and I asked myself,’am I now doing whatever it is I’m supposed to do when I grow up?’ I wanted to go back. Fast forward to this week. I was assigned another university hospital with my new job and as I drove around the campus, I was filled with gratitude, it was like deja vu’ from when I first started. I smiled thinking about those old feelings in college, will I get a job? where will I end up? am I doing the right thing? why did I change my major? Even now some of those questions linger but I do know that life goes on and we follow a path based on our own mistakes and decisions and ultimately where God leads us.

Also this week, an old friend was asking about a television show I was on in the 80’s. It spurred conversation between a few of my other friends on Facebook and brought back fond memories of my past. Since I have to drive quite a bit for my new job, I brought a few CD’s I had of musicals, Les Miserables, Miss Saigon, Rent…and as I tried to sing along with the soundtracks, for the first time in a long time I was a little heartbroken. I miss my singing voice. I have always loved music and was fortunate to do a lot of singing over the years and now, after cancer took away a vocal cord, it’s not so easy and I was feeling a little nostalgic and sad. I have to say though, it was because of my singing and my inability to reach some of the notes that I found my cancer (massaging my neck after singing somewhere because my throat was so sore).

So this week, as I celebrate Thanksgiving with my family, I am thankful for my singing because in a strange twist of fate, it’s what saved me. I am thankful for a career that allows me to talk to and meet all kinds of people. I am thankful for the journey God has taken me on, past, present, and even future. I am thankful for my family and friends; for all those who support me through this blog and my Facebook fanpage. Most of all, like all survivors, I am thankful for life. Blessings to all of you and Happy Thanksgiving!

Today I wear Mac Sheen Supreme Lipstick in Can’t Resist. I LOVE these ultra moisturizing full color lipsticks! They feel almost like lipbalm, but a tiny bit thicker and are a full color lipstick! Can’t Resist is a plummy-red that is a great color for fall. I chose it because not only do I love the color, but I also love the name. When I think about my life and all that’s transpired I can’t resist smiling. Feeling blessed.

%d bloggers like this: