Month: May 2017

What Sustains Me

Inspiration Simplicity

What Sustains Me

A few months ago, I planned a Financial Summit for me and my husband, Sean. He thought the idea was ridiculous but went along with it. (I have been known to call various meetings, give them big names and declare it mandatory to wear suits. All of which he despises.)

We met at my favorite cafe late on a Sunday. We had Sean’s parents babysit. I guess it was a DATE! I was excited, and prepared. I’d given some assignments to Sean and one of them was to list the three things he cannot live without.

After we covered how we were were going to dig ourselves out of student debt and got sobered up by how little equity we have in our house, we got to the good stuff…how are we going to spend the money we do have to work with?!?! Being cloaked in the millennial uniform of school debt isn’t enjoyable but we find it so important to continue doing the things that nourish our lives in wholesome ways alongside paying increasing amounts on our school debt each month. So I showed him my list of the three things I can’t live without and he laughed at me.

My list was:
1. Yoga
2. Vegetables
3. Books

I’m never without a grateful heart for the privileges we have, which are many, and the choices we are afforded in our lives as Marjorie & Sean. So that had me thinking about what sustains me each and every day – when things are wild, chill, chaotic, mundane, crazy, lovely or sleepy these are and always will be my go to pick me ups, things that I fall back on no matter what.

Chats with my mom & sister
Trader Joe’s coffee (French Roast)
eggs, eggs, eggs
Trader Joe’s coffee (French Roast)
Journaling/writing/creating anything
Dinner (many roasted veggies)
Togetherness with food and friends and love
My tiny plants on my porch
Music – John Mayer, Zac Brown Band, Kenny Chesney, Nina Lee

Feel free to borrow my pick-me-ups or add your own.


Image: Arno Smit

Treasure Hunting

Adventures & Travel Community Family Inspiration Simplicity

Treasure Hunting

I wrote this a few months ago and forgot about it. My memory lost all these details already, so happy I saved them here. Enjoy and let me know what treasures you find if you go hunting!


“Now I know why you said this would be a treasure hunt,” said my five year old son, Brady, as we made our way through the Bryn Athyn Thrift Store on a Thursday afternoon.

We went for pajamas and left with treasures (and one pair of pajama pants for the little man). A win all around. For some reason, Meadow insisted on taking her shoes off multiple times while we were shopping in the big old barn. I’ll never know why. There are feasts for the eyes everywhere you turn. The decor was so fun to look at with old tools hanging on the walls and historic photos of the area and barn nearly everywhere. The kid/toys area was the most fun.

The Barn Thrift Shop
The Barn Thrift Shop

Anyone who knows me, most likely knows that Brady is quite arguably the most dedicated Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle fan. Our neighbor across the street kindly gave Brady some old TMNT action figures that were her son’s when she was cleaning out the basement. These are the best kind of toys! They hold stories and memories and he still plays with them more than a year later.


Recently he expressed that he wanted to complete his “old school classic” turtle collection. I talked about how they don’t make those guys anymore but perhaps we could go on a treasure hunt to different thrift stores and see what we might find. He was intrigued. But I could tell he didn’t really know what I was alluding to.

So today at the thrift shop we found the toy area and there was a full bin of action figures (!). Although we did not find the “old school classic” Leonardo that was first on his list, we did find some more recent happy meal TMNT toys and his face LIT UP! For $.50 each, he got Donatello, Michelangelo and Raphael happy meal toys without the meal! It was so exciting!

TMNT Treasure: FOUND

Meadow found two new babies for $1 each and I got a new shirt! Walking through all the dishes and books and replacement coffee pots was so much fun. The craziest thing is that I never even saw or heard of the happy meal toys Brady scored today but when we got home he told me, “You know mommy it’s a funny thing. I thought of those happy meal turtles this morning and was hoping I would get them.”

The Barn Thrift Shop
Outside the thrift shop, how pretty
A Recovering Perfectionist


A Recovering Perfectionist

Most people I know confess that they are “Type A.” Are we all just trying to control something? Are we all Type A to an extent?

I used to think I’ve let go of controlling everything, a recovering Type A, if you will. Type B, I suppose? But now I just filter this perfectionism to organic eating and parenting, so who am I kidding?

Life has been difficult for me recently, internally, and I can’t understand why. I’ve broken down in tears more than once in the middle of the day, a puddle on the kitchen floor. I rarely hide my emotions from my kids (intentionally because I want them to see we all have ups and downs) but I’m pretty certain they are so confused by me lately. I keep trying to write how I feel but I don’t have words. I can’t explain why I’m so emotional lately or how these feelings surface like a summer storm and drift away.

I read that 4 planets are in retrograde and shifting the earth’s energy. It made me feel better about my storms. I’ve been creating so much that there hasn’t been much time for consumption. I’ve been making space for more reading and listening of things and people that inspire me. The effects are medicinal for me.

We all have those “things” that are our strengths, our anchors, what carries us and what carries others at times. And we all have those traits or “things” that continuously, painstakingly, FEROCIOUSLY at times visit us again and again presenting yet another opportunity to work on ourselves.

“The best predictor of a child’s well-being is a parent’s self-understanding,” is a quote I respect from Dr. Dan Siegel and the motto of Zen Parenting Radio. They used to say it every podcast episode. Sometimes it sounded so mundane because I’ve heard it so many times, but most times it really feels amazing, so simple yet complex.

So when I know and feel that my awareness is basically unawareness or foggy or I’m reacting more frequently than thoughtfully living with intention, all the red flags go up. It’s when my journal pages get scribbled on intensely and feelings literally move out of me through a pen and once I’ve said or written them – sometimes to no one other than my secret journal – life feels manageable again.

The hardest thing in all of this is it makes no sense, it can’t be understood with the mind, there’s no physical result to finally feel “done” with my latest emotional roller coaster…I just need to let it go and move on. And that’s where the Type A comes back into play. For me at least, I see it creep up.

So I try again to look at what is mine, how I’m living, what I’m choosing to do each and every hour of my days with a beginner’s mind and a curious heart. It gets me through to the next season of ease and joy and blinding love – because they always come back around. I know that for sure.