Friday, April 1, 2016

Spirit, self-care, and reunited friends - my grateful list

While working on being present in my life, I have been much more aware of the things around me and the things that make my life special. It has been imperative for me to acknowledge those things, how they influence my life, and how I feel about them.

March has been an encouraging month. Here are just a sample of why:

The farewell tour of Spirit of the West

When Spirit of the West announced their farewell tour, it was on the heels of the news that their lead singer/guitar player had early onset Alzheimer's and he would no longer be able to tour. Having listened to this band for over 30 years and having seen them a handful of times, it was important to all of us to go bid them goodbye.

Spirit of the West final tour
Spirit of the West - final tour

The concert was beautiful, heartbreaking, and a testament to true friendship. To watch the members of the band rally around their friend, to guide him when he needed it, to encourage him, to step in when he couldn't quite get there, and to cry for him while he sang, it was an incredibly moving sight.

When they sang Not Just a Train (you can see the video here), as a way to say goodbye, I admit I cried. 

Best friends, best spouses

At the end of the month, The Guy and I celebrated the anniversary of our first date. I continue to be grateful every day that I have this incredible man in my life. 

best friends best marriages
9 years together!

Self-Care and my Passion Planner

When I ordered my Passion Planner for this year, I knew it would be a great help with productivity and reaching my full potential. I have been extremely pleased with my planner and am thrilled to see how many others are finding such joy and help from it. 

In cooperation with my counsellor, the planner is helping me remember what is important to me and what I need to do to ensure I don't forget those things. Now, I can clearly see if I'm ignoring my husband, my dog, or my friends. Most importantly, it has helped me to remember to take care of myself. 

Passion Planner self care
Self-care plan
I know that this coming month is going to be crazy, so my focus is on the things that keep me sane, keep me balanced, and keep me productive. I need to make sure I'm practicing these skills so I am on my game.

Monty's new dog tags

Since Monty took a little vacation from his babysitters in October (full story to be told soon, I'm sure), I've been a little more paranoid about how to make sure he can be returned to us if he decides he needs his freedom again. 

identification tags for dogs
Monty's new tags

This month, I decided to spring for a new tag with his name and both our phone numbers. It won't help for the next time we're in Vancouver airport boarding our plan for Hawaii, but it will be a bit easier.

Senior dogs

Monty's mom, Maddy is now 15 years and reaching the end of her time with us. This Easter, I got to spend some time with her again.  She was a great dog for me when I needed her and she has had a great life with my SiL who has cared for her for the last 7 or so years. I am thankful for this spunky little dog and we will be heartbroken when she goes. 

senior dogs
Maddy - the senior dogs

No matter what, this face will bring memories of unending games of fetch, stolen chap stick, and foraging for beans in the garden. 

Reunited: renewed friendships

March has been a great month for friends. A great friend from the states came up to visit me. It had been years since we were together and it was like we'd never been apart. 

I had a coffee date with another friend and we realized her child who had been new born the last time I saw her was now almost 2 years old. Again, we had an exciting conversation that gave me so much to think about afterward I cannot wait to do it again.

We then had another couple from the states come up for a quick stop and, though it was short, it was so good to see them.

These are my favourite types of friends. Friends who challenge me and encourage me and who pick up right where we left off in the conversation regardless if it has been days or years.

Monty too was reunited with his bestie.

Best friends reunited.
Lil E and Monty reunited

In December, my cousin and her family bought their own home. We have been so excited for them to have their first real home, but we definitely have noticed their absence. None so much as Monty, who spent weeks staring into their empty suite with sadness and confusion. 

We went to visit one day and he and Lil E spent ages running the basement, hopping on and off things, playing fetch and tag and colouring. Finally, we were able to slow them down for a brief moment of lunch and TV. Monty slept for 2 full days once we got home.


I am so thankful for these experiences. Though not every day was a great day, it has made for a great life.