This week has felt productive.
I can’t put my finger on the why, but I feel like I am on a path forward… not standing still, or worse, moving backward.
Pinterest and Tailwind.
As I move toward the end of the year…and closer to the 2-year mark of this blog, I am reviewing the posts that people are interested in reading and those that fall into the “perhaps not so much”. I’m reflecting on how I see things moving forward. I signed up for a trial of Tailwind because I keep reading about how Pinterest is so many people’s source of traffic. I’ve still yet to see that prove valid even though I actually have quite a few monthly viewers to my Pinterest page. So I’m guessing there are things on my part that I should be tweaking and learning. That’s what I’ve been doing in my downtime.
Not that I have much of that!
On Tuesday, I shared that over the weekend we traveled to a Christmas Tree Farm to choose our tree this year.
We tend to keep our tree in its natural state and enhance it with some lights and our collection of ornaments. The bottom is intentionally bare this year because we weren’t sure how Maverick (our 65 pound Goldendoodle puppy) would react. So far, he has made no attempts to touch it. I was surprised as he eats every stick and tree branch that he can in the yard. I assume it’s because he knows that he can’t touch the peace lilies that sit beside the fireplace, and therefore realizes a tree inside is a no-no to touch.
Many of our ornaments have deep sentimental meaning to us. Some are handmade, some adorned with photos of my three children who are now teenagers, one on the cusp of adulthood.
I am slowly capturing photos of those ornaments that I hold dear to share along with some of our traditions. update: you can find that post here.
This ornament holds no special endearment. What used to be a set of six bulbs has dwindled down to two, the others meeting their demise on tile or wooden floors. The bulb is covered in glitter, yet opaque. I always hang it in front of a light so that its color can shine through. I loved the snowflake design even though I kept a home in Florida for the first fourteen years of home ownership.
Now, we are expecting snow tonight. In fact, there are flurries outside as we speak. I watched Maverick’s eyes grow large when he saw it coming down.I feel a sense of newfound wonder as I watch someone ( a dog in this case) see something for the first time.
I still recall the first time that I saw snow as a person grown enough to remember. I was 21 and in the mountains of Georgia. I looked out the window and was pretty sure it was snow. But if I were incorrect, then I would be disappointed. So instead, I said to the hubby… “look, it’s raining ice”. He told me that it was indeed snow and I was so excited! Perhaps he had a moment of newfound wonder through my eyes?
I have been consistent with my December Challenge. I have shared a moment of gratitude from the prompt each day on my Instagram Story. I am also taking photos with my Sony Alpha that fall under the prompt, as well as journaling each evening about more moments of gratitude based on the prompt.
I’ll probably compile a synopsis of my month of gratitude in my review of how the challenge went.
Today is day 8, and the prompt is self-love.
I had to spend some time with this one. I have had plenty of struggles over the years learning to be at peace with and love myself.
When I was younger, I wanted to be petite. I wondered why I looked like the Jolly Green Giant next to my mother or had shoulders as broad as a linebacker (I’m exaggerating of course, but I thought that as a teen). These big hands that fit into no warm gloves and feet that would make a sasquatch proud. These are the thoughts I fought. We often want what we aren’t.
I was certain that I must have Scandinavian DNA. If you’ve read about my results from Ancestry.com then you know that my results were only 5% Scandinavian. I’m still not convinced that my 79% Great Britain and 10% Ireland/Scotland/Wales isn’t rooted in Scandinavian ancestry.
Have you ever read Celtic mythology?
The Tuatha Dé Danann (and similar in the Mabinogion) were gods who came in ships from the sky (clouds) and were fair-skinned with red or blonde hair.
I’ve read an account that supposed that just as Troy was found to be an actual place, perhaps the Tuatha Dé Danann were Vikings who sailed through the mist on their ships.
However, I do believe in magic and they could have been magic as well.
Maybe that’s why I find a strong desire to visit the standing stones in Scotland. Hmmm?
But back to self-love.
I grew babies in my womb. Babies that have grown and grown. Babies that have my shoulders, hands, and feet and it has helped me to love my own more. But the journey towards self-love is a continual process.
Meditation and Yoga.
Meditation has definitely worked in helping me draw deeper into that space. But also yoga and pilates. They have shown me that my body is strong. That my body is capable of doing so much more than I thought it could. I realize my form could be better in the photo (that’s what happens on a 10-second timer), but I can actually do side plank crunches (yes, at some point I have to do them from my elbow because my shoulders can only handle so much work in a session). That is something that I never dreamed I’d be doing.
I grow to love myself more each day.
L.L. Bean Boots.
My other fave of the week is that my L.L. Bean boots FINALLY came in! The first pair I ordered were too small and so I had to send them back to be exchanged. My sasquatch feet range between a 9-10 in a woman’s shoe, mostly being 9.5. Bean boots are known for running large and it said that if you were a 1/2 size to size down 1 to 2 sizes depending on whether or not you planned to wear thick socks. I do not plan to wear thick socks because I own a pair of Sorel and a pair of Eddie Bauer snow boots that I wear to be able to capture photos like the one below:
I just wanted a cute waterproof boot to wear instead of always needing to opt for my tall Hunter boots.
Anyways, I ordered an 8 because I could fit my feet in Miss Sunshine’s size 7. But nope! I needed a 9. Keep that in mind if you do ever order a pair. I love that they include a card that lets you know who hand stitched your boots.
This week as I hunted “new to me” songs on Youtube, I came across this Swedish Indie Band, Mountains of the Moon. I hope you enjoy their sound. I did!
I hope that you have a beautiful weekend.
I’m off to watch the snow as it flurries down outside my window. I think I’ll make a cup of tea and settle in with some Middlemarch.
I hope that you catch a glimpse of the world through new eyes.
Let your light shine!
26 thoughts on “Friday Faves – Edition 43”
You’ve achieved so much with your beautiful blog diaries.. keep inspiring others 🌸
Thank you so much for your kind words!!
Love your photos and your narrative. A very beautiful tree you found. Thanks for saring!
A very good Friday indeed!!
Thanks Dwight! I’m hoping to get back to that stand of trees again this year once the snow settles in. A very good Friday! 🙂 -Amy
Great post, Amy, a joy to read, as always! Have a great weekend! Marcus
Thanks Marcus! I hope that you have an amazing weekend as well. -Amy
Isn’t it funny how the grass always seems to be so much greener on the other side? When I was in junior high, I desperately wished for a growth spurt so that I might be at least average in height. Alas, that wasn’t meant to be. Not the growth spurt, nor the boring ol’ average. Now I enjoy being occasionally mistaken for my sons’ older sister. 😀
Yes it is! I have a cousin that I am close with and she is that tiny version that I always wanted to be. Yet there was a point in her life when she wished she were tall like me. I remember being mistaken for my middle son’s older sister when he was in 4th grade. Totally made my day!! 🙂
This was a wonderful post, delightful from beginning to end. Enjoy your boots!
Thank you so much!!
I’m with you on settling in with a hot cuppa and Middlemarch! I haven’t re-read that in several years nor watched the PBS version in a long time. That cast was awesome. Are you reading the book or watching the movie version?
I’ve never ordered L. L. Bean boots, but have often contemplated doing so. I’m never sure of the size so have opted to go to the store and buy my boots right then and there after trying them on. Shoes are the hardest thing for me to shop for. It makes me feel so picky, but seriously it’s the lack of proper fit. It’s not me! It’s the shoe manufactures. I have an average size foot with a little heel. I prefer a wider toe box for room to swell that goes with hiking and all day wear. I wish I could afford a real cobbler to make my shoes and boots. Oh how I long for a real cobbler. Sigh.
I like your tree. Especially the Grinch! He’s a favorite among our family, and Oscar the Grouch too. We have him on our tree too. My tree has never been a perfectly themed, and arranged one. It’s always been a collection really a hodge podge of ornaments I like, and ornaments friends, family, and the kids have made me. My most treasured are the home-made ornaments the kids made me while in school with their pictures in them. Oh, and the Ziggy ornament Big Baby Boy brought home one day from school his freshman year in high school and sheepishly handed to me and said, ” Here Mom, it’s for you. You can put it on the tree if you want to” .
Someone gave it to him, but he wouldn’t say who or how it came about. I suspected it was given to him by a girl that he didn’t have the same feelings for. Years later when he was an Under Grad he coughed up the tale. Yep, a girl gave it to him and he didn’t have a crush on her like she had on him. She was just a friend and he never saw her any other way.
They’re still friends, and so are her Mother and I. Thankfully! It’s a fun bit of family history, and one day that Ziggy ornament will be hung on Big Baby Boy’s tree. 🙂
I am reading the book. I didn’t know there was a movie. I’ll have to check that out when I finish. This is my first read. I stumbled upon it a classic that should be read. I had a hard time being interested in the beginning, but now it is moving along and I am fully invested in seeing the twists and turns.
I don’t often order shoes. I like to know exactly how they fit, but I don’t have an L.L. Bean store nearby and really love their classic look. And no shoe seems to fit the same! Like with clothes, there is a true lack of consistency.
I love a tree filled with memories. I have some ornaments that I took from my mother’s tree as well! 🙂
I found the book tough to get into at first too, but stuck it out and was glad I did. I seem to recall PBS did a series which ran for several weeks. I liked it a lot, but like Masterpiece series almost always. 🙂 You can probably find it on Netflix or Youtube.
LOVE the yoga photo. Interesting that you have mainly British DNA. I always wonder how accurate those DNA tests are – how they have compiled the data. I suppose I should read about it – there’s bound to be some articles somewhere. Knowing that DNA is HUGE (1.5 gigabytes per person), it makes me wonder how general the tests really are – because comparing anything more than a few markers would be unrealistic to even attempt.
I’m sure that I understand very little about how DNA testing works. Ancestry says that it tests 700,000 locations on your genome. They compare it to samples that they have from around the world and say that as more people take the test, the more accurate it will become. I think there is some comparison to DNA sourced from ancient bodies as well (although I’m not really sure). They show it as a broad circle of locality. For example “Great Britain” DNA also extends into part of France, Belgium, and the Netherlands. I wish it were more precise, but I find it extremely fascinating!
I very much enjoyed watching my pets see snow for the first time, too. Especially my most recent kitten. Every time it falls, he tries to get it. It’s adorable.
I have average feet. They’re narrow, but I wear everything from a 6.5 to a 9.5 and I think that’s WAY too wide a range. I think it’s absurd. Boots are good though, so it’s worth the frustration.
I bet the kitty is adorable to watch. Maverick liked eating the snow. He thought that it was the best thing! That does seems like a wide range for shoes. I really wish there were more consistency in clothing and shoes. Boots truly are the best! 🙂
Have you taken video of Maverick eating his snows?
No, not yet. The snow was brief and melted already. I did video him trying to figure out what it was when there were flurries.
Don’t let me miss that if you capture him 🙂
I love to take out the decorations and remember where they came from. I actually have some from my own childhood. I also love LLBean boots. Thanks for sharing your Friday Favs!
Going through the decorations is such a beautiful time. I have some that I brought from my parent’s tree that have made their home on my tree for many years now.
I am loving the LL Bean boots! 🙂
Thank you for sharing your week! I love your yoga photo – I am trying to get into the yoga habit, but it is rather challenging!
I’m glad that you enjoyed my sharing of the week. Thank you for the compliment on the yoga photo. I’ve fallen somewhat out of the habit recently because I’ve been going to Pilates classes and running on the other days. I’m looking forward to spending more time on the yoga practice again.
I feel very torn as well. I actually prefer to run, but the yoga is very good for my core, balance and dinky shoulder.