compass tattoo

when what you have & where you are is enough.

“Be content with what you have;
rejoice in the way things are.
When you realize there is nothing lacking,
the whole world belongs to you.” ― Lao Tzu

i’m not necessarily talking about material things. i’m not talking about the things that you  and i own. or the things that we wished we owned. i’m talking about something a little deeper than that. i’m talking about what we have inside of us.

we try so often to fill that space inside of us called “happiness” with things that are outside of us. we think that if we live here, or travel there, or buy this, or own that, then we will finally be happy. but, it doesn’t work like that.  not at all. at least that’s not how i have experienced it.

the thing that brings us happiness is not outside of us, but inside. it is the choice to decide to be free. for, as i once read, someone, somewhere, said that we can always choose to be free. even if we feel (or are) enslaved and trapped. if that weren’t true, all the martyrs throughout history would have never achieved martyrdom. though they found themselves in prisons and facing death, they chose to be free. they chose to listen to their soul and to be content with their lives & their decisions to be faithful to themselves, regardless of their outside situations. they lived the phrase, “no one can steal your joy.” and, of course, there are hundreds, even thousands of heroes today who choose to be free, even in the midst of violence, war, hunger, homelessness, and sickness.

one year i met person after person who lived what we would call difficult lives, but who seemed to be completely free and at peace. these people just came into my life at random times and in random places over the course of that year. on the street corner. or outside the church where i worked. in a bookstore in anchorage, alaska. they were all homeless people, on journeys of their own. with a mission. to help others or to walk across the usa or to find themselves. when i met each of them, they were all looking for a little nourishment. and, as i sat with them, they each had tons to teach me about what it really means to be happy, or content. because they all were. their lives were not easy, but simple. they lived in the middle of difficult situations and faces challenges every day, and yet they were content. they relied on the kindness of others. they wandered. they prayed. they shared. they were at peace.

am i that brave? am i that content with simplicity? perhaps not. but, it is something to strive for… contentment.

however, at least i know that, while i love to travel and believe that there are some places where i might be better suited to live than others, my happiness, my ability to be content and at peace, does not rely on my outside surroundings, where my home is, or the things i own. because truly, i don’t need that much to survive (as evidenced by the empty apartment i am living in right now).

my happiness, my peace, my ability to be content relies solely on my choices and my connection to my inner life. do i choose to truly live life and be alive? do i choose to take time to listen to what my soul is whispering to me? do i choose to focus on the positive? do i choose to spread good energy? do i choose to see every day as an adventure and every moment as something sacred? it’s all up to me. and it doesn’t matter where i am.

so i chose to do this…

compass tattoo

day 20 | contentment… my compass. my guide.

i had written about wanting a new tattoo in my guest post over at for the love of wanderlust. and i really wanted to get it in sweden before i moved to the states. well, since time was running out, it just so happened that i was able to get it yesterday.  yippee!

this new piece of art not only symbolizes my ever-growing thirst for travel and my wanderlust-y tendencies. but, it is also a reminder, a symbol of my true guide… my soul. each time i look at it, i will be reminded that i am never truly lost, as long as i know who i am. as long as i let my soul, my heart, the spirit guide me.

it’s true that i am a wanderer. and i believe that life is a continuous journey out into the world, one of exploring new places & people. but, the beauty of life is that it is also a journey inward. a never-ending journey exploring and discovering who we are and who we want to be. but, no matter how far i roam, or where i am, i am never, ever lost.

and like the other tattoos that i have, my compass has instantly become part of my story told in symbols. representing different places in the world, and different phases and ideas in my life. i may have grown and changed in my thoughts, but the foundational belief or idea behind each tattoo i have remains a steadfast, core truth in my life. and it represents a very specific time and memory and belief.

so, contentment? it’s not an elusive thing. it’s a conscious thing. it being mindful and aware of all that we already have… within us. our souls are our guides to contentment and inner peace. it is a life-long journey and a daily practice of just being present.

i wish you each of you some moments of contented peace today, in the midst of the hustle & bustle of your life. may you find some peace & feel loved even in the middle of the hectic moments.

contentment is just a long, deep breath away. peace.


be present. what a great idea.


i am reading the tao of inner peace by diane dreher. and right now, i’m in the middle of the part on simplicity. i suppose you could argue that the whole book is about simplicity, but there is one part really struck me. i’ve been thinking alot about life, and how we have the power to choose the life that we want to lead. we may not be able to choose the circumstances we find ourselves in, and they may be very crappy circumstances, but we have the power (always!) to choose how we respond to those circumstances. how we act. and react. we have the power to change, or not. and again, we may not be able to change our circumstances, but we can always change and choose our attitude.

but, we must be strong. and self-aware. and vulnerable. and flexible. and hopeful. all at the same time. nevertheless, we have the power to choose how we face the day when we wake up in the morning. will we see it as a day with opportunities or a day with “musts” and “shoulds”?

however, it’s not as easy as just flipping on a little positive switch in our brain. i believe that in order to be able to find the strength to choose to seek & spread peace, to choose to spread out positive energy, we must begin to be in touch with ourselves. but, we have that power, if we tap into it.

in other words, we must simplify our lives just enough in order to focus on what is really important. we must slow down enough in order to simply be with ourselves. we must center ourselves, so we’re not just living life and going through the motions, but really feeling alive.

the way of the tao teaches that “without the center, the surface means nothing… what we are brings meaning and purpose. beneath the restless surface of our lives lies a deep source of peace, power, and inspiration. we find that deep center in reflection or meditation.”


for the next 5 days i’m focusing on being present. living in the moment. slowing down. the next 5 challenges in june’s photo journey of simplicity are all about just being. and remembering that those quiet, alone, reflective moments are ones we need to remember to carve out each & every day. at least that’s what i believe.

quiet. alone. contemplative. present. alive. yeah, these are my focus words for this week.

i think that just being allows us to be with ourselves, which is sometimes difficult, but always a fantastic learning & growing experience. and right now, since we don’t have a tv anything in our apartment, life is pretty quiet and simple. part of it drives me crazy… but at the same time, i love the challenge. and i know it is good for me. i know that my soul needs to breathe. i know that i need to remember to be friends with myself. i know that i need to to just sit & listen, so that i can hear the heartbeat and music in my soul. only through listening will i know true peace. only through listening will i discover who i am. and remember who i am not.

i am not the labels that define and describe what i do or my relationship to others. i am, in fact, not defined by anything outside of me. who i am is found deep within my inner self. my soul. it is found in the same divine and sacred stardust, magic, spirit (or whatever you call it) that lives within each of us. of course, we are not all completely the same. we are created to be unique, beautiful creatures, each with unique, beautiful gifts to be used in the world; and yet mysteriously and wondrously connected to one another.


side note: i just became aware that i am in the midst of a magical, special moment in my life as i type this. my love is sitting in our empty living room, picking on her guitar, singing loudly, filled with emotion as the bare walls and floors provide an amazing acoustic experience. and i’m on the bed, typing away, books open beside me. both of us, soaking up in our own ways the simple beauty of this moment. being fully aware. fully alive. fully in touch with our souls. so, i can feel it. it is a special moment of connection and peace. a gift.

suddenly, as a typed that last sentence, lina began singing & playing the song that i heard her sing the night that i met her for the first time. she hardly every sings it. and right now, she sits in the other room, singing to my soul. memories are rushing back. memories of meeting her. of my year of death and rebirth. of knowing exactly who i am. of knowing exactly what dream to chase. those memories were from 6 years ago… and in this moment, i know that hearing that song from lina in this present moment was a gift and a moment of clarification that everything is exactly as it should be.

and i am overwhelmed. with joy. and security. and fear. and excitement. and hope. and i know that this crazy journey to the states is exactly right for us right now.

well i did not intend for this post to go quite like this, but it did. and it feels right. but, before i settle in for the night, i’d like to share with you a quote i put on my photo for today’s word.


day 17 of the simplicity photo journey | idea.

i am a true believer in the power of living in the present moment. tonight, after dinner, my love & i took a walk in the evening warmth. holding hands, laughing, strolling. and as we walked, my love commented on everything she was seeing. and she told me that she was purposefully paying attention to every little detail. she was, in fact, soaking up the sun’s rays and the present moment all at the same time. and i could feel her joy and her appreciation for life. i could feel her being grounded in that moment, in touch with her center and with all that really matters in life.

so, my friends, i urge you to find a moment over the next few days and just be. do it every day. while you drink your morning coffee. or while you walk. or when you lay down at night. or when you eat. anytime you have a moment to yourself. just close your eyes. and breathe. and see what amazing ideas, thoughts, and dreams come to you…

goodnight. peace & love.


green is the new black.

everybody’s into going green these days. and that’s a good thing. our earth is a beautiful place to live, and somehow, we’ve got to get a handle on learning how to take better care of her. so, i’m all for all things green. and i do my part. i walk. i recycle. i turn off the water as i shower. i’m trying to leave light footprints wherever i go. i’m not so good at growing my own things, but i do buy locally & ecologically, when i can. but i am no where near perfect. i could do way much better.

as a part of the simplicity photo journey, i thought i’d take a few days to consider the earth. to focus on the simplicity and beauty found in nature, for she is one of the important things. and whether you believe in god or mother nature or whatever, nature reveals much to us about spirituality & interconnected-ness. simply being in the middle of nature, slowing down enough to observe the intricate beauty, can give us a connection to each other & the rest of creation. i call that spirit. and if that’s not spirituality, i don’t know what is.

in my opinion, living a green life is a way to take back some of the simplicity we are missing in our face-paced, fake, all-too-convenient world. now, don’t get me wrong, i love convenience, quick fixes, and the fast pace of the city energizes me. but, i also know that i i must balance it all. i must get back to nature in order to nurture my soul, and i must work hard to do my part to leave this world a better place…

today i had a staff luncheon… sort of a last hurrah before the summer begins – everything shuts down & slows down in sweden in the summer (speaking of simplicity…). however, we were not gonna just go to a restaurant in town for lunch. nope. we drove about 30 minutes out into the middle of the swedish countryside to visit an ostrich farm. that’s right. i said ostrich farm! i had no idea what an ostrich farm was doing in the middle of sweden, since they are native to africa. but, i soon found out that a man & his family read an article about the big birds and decided they wanted to raise them. soon i realized that they raised them for their meat. gaaaahhh. on the plus side, i guess, they were raised to be organic and free range. so that’s good, i guess.

anyway, aside from the whole poor ostriches thing, it was a fabulous day. the weather was outstanding. the landscape was the typical, eye-popping beautiful swedish landscape, and the company of ladies i was with was fun. on top of that, it was the perfect inspiration to get my head in gear for the next 5 days of the photo journey.

today’s word for the photo journey was grow, and i had tons of opportunities to snap pics of things growing. and here’s what i chose to be the official photo of the day:


and here are a few others from the day. you won’t believe the beauty of sweden. even after living here for almost 3 years now, i still can hardly believe my eyes…




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IMG_1257  IMG_1333


it was the last time i’d see some of the staff today, so there were moments where i felt overwhelmed at the paradox of the beauty and peace, and the sadness and strangeness of embarking on something new. of course, seeing sweden in all of her natural glory today was both inspiring and difficult, for i will miss this country quite a bit.

but, i’m gonna soak up as much of it as i can over the next month. every single little minute. and for the next 4 days, i’m gonna do it by reminding myself what i have learned about living a simple and green life by living in sweden, a country that is serious about the environment. living here has made me a better person, a much more environmentally conscious person.

well, my friends, if you want to join in the photo journey fun, here are the simple words for the next 4 days:

  • wednesday: solar/sun
  • thursday: fruits & veggies
  • friday: vintage
  • saturday: recycle/reuse

take some pics, and spend the next few things thanking mother nature for being so amazing by going free. just let yourself float back to a time where things were much simpler & much more appreciated. and remember… green is the new black.

now go hug a tree. peace.


i can get a little design crazy.

for the second part of my photo journey, i thought about focusing on simplicity at home. we all want a peaceful, cozy, friendly, welcoming home. and, if you’re like me, you want your home to be a sanctuary as well. a place that reflects creativity and inspires. a place where everything has a meaning and everything has it’s purpose and place.

i must admit, i’m a sucker for interior design blogs/websites and photos. there are a few blogs that i follow purely because they share amazing photos of inspiring homes. like this one. and i also pin photos of rooms and designs to pinterest. click here to see what inspires me. i’m a mess of contradictions. i love clean, simple, white, black, & gray. at the same time, i love funky, quirky, second-hand, vintage, and warm. my love is exactly the same… lucky for us, huh? somehow, though, we always seem to work out a good balance, even thought our tastes may seem all over the place.

as we prepare to move into our new dream apartment in asheville, we have begun planning what we want our home to feel like. how we want it to look, yes. but also what we want the vibe to be. we want it to be all the things i mentioned above: clean, simple, warm, and a bit funky. so, as we look at websites for new furniture, and pack up very important things that we want to take with us, we realize over & over again, that it isn’t at all about the stuff. sure we love the stuff. we love cool & clean & funky design. but, the meaning behind it, the purpose of it all, whether it is old or new, is what’s most important. so, i’m working hard to keep all in mind.

i’m working hard to remember to make my new home, a simple, loving environment. where moments are filled with laughter and coziness. where we rejoice and enjoy the simple things… quiet mornings on the balcony. dinners around the table with friends. game nights. nights reading in bed. cooking & baking together. rooms filled with music & art.

ultimately my only dream is to make my house a home. it’s that simple.

here are some of the last photos of my home here in sweden… we’ll be moving out of this apartment in about a week or 2. mixed feelings. yeah. it’s been a great, great, great home. take a look at my simplicity journey for the past 5 days:

day 6: corner – my favorite spot to hang out by myself in the mornings. sipping coffee. reading. writing.


7: bowl – my favorite bowl. lovingly made by my creative sister-in-law potter, who i’m gonna live near very soon!


day 8: family – in the midst of some chaos at home this weekend, we found ourselves in the hall at one point & decided it was time for a silly, crazy family portrait. my family is everything to me.


9. table – with the apartment in disarray, i sat down for a moment with my mac on the only empty table to catch up on some blogs and find some inspiration.


10: DIY – check out my love DIY-ing it like a boss. yeah.


wishing you a peaceful morning or night, wherever you are. may you steal away a few moments of silence and peace somewhere in your home.


bringing us together year after year.

you see? i said last night in my post that i was so thankful for having a chance to read what you have to say, and there y’all go again inspiring and uplifting me and pointing me in the direction of beautiful things.

i took a little break (and a much needed shower) and opened my little mac on my coffee table and was greeted with a sweet comment by one of my newer blogging buds, grumpy granny, who has decided to join in the june photo journey fun on her blog. yay! as i clicked on over to her blog (click here to visit), i scrolled through some of her latest posts and came across a quote that touched me. i connected immediately with the words and the sentiment. so, i decided i just had to pass it on & share it with the rest of you.

“See this world as a free world, and see everyone in it as trying—through their individual experiences—to find their way back to that calling, back to that Source Energy. And even though there are billions of them going about it in a way that is different than you would choose, there’s no right or wrong way. In other words, bless them all, and get on with the only thing you have any power about, which is opening or closing your vortex to your natural state of Well-Being.”



so. there ya go. that’s what’s was on my table in the morning. my computer, my connection to all of you. a few leftover candles. a car brochure of the car we’re planning to buy in the states. and that’s it.

later on in the day, this table same held 4 mugs, a carafe of coffee, and some ice cream. we had some friends come by for a short visit while they were in town.

isn’t it amazing how tables become such important pieces of furniture in a home? they are usually quite simple, and can be rather ordinary. even boring some would say. yet, we find ourselves sharing intimate moments over good food & drink with family and friends at our tables. we celebrate, discuss, argue, dream, and work at them. every home has one, and i hope they are used.  i hope that others have the joy of sharing life around a table with the ones they love. it is truly one of those simple things that makes regular ole daily life a tiny bit more meaningful. that is, if we just take the time to gather there and connect with each other.

i’m so thankful for this little sofa table that i sat at today for a few moments of relaxation & inspiration by myself, and then with my love & our friends as we laughed and chatted the afternoon away. my love & i have has so many cozy, wonderful moments centered around this little wooden centerpiece. it makes me think… our next table purchase/creation will definitely be one that we give a lot of attention to. but you know, in reality, it doesn’t matter at all how it looks or what the design is. all that matters is that it’s there. and that we slide our chairs up under it, ready to discover and enjoy the people in our lives. if i could, i’d invie you all to sit around my table with me at some point. well, if you’re ever in the area, there’s always a seat for you!

wishing you peace & love & simple moments around your table.


feelin’ zen?

what is zen anyway? if i say that i live a zen life (which i don’t, but i try), what does that mean?

for me, without any official or historical definition  right in front of me, zen is all about peace, simplicity, and contemplation. of course, i think of the zen buddhists, sitting quietly, legs-crossed, under a tree. i think of zen masters quietly mentoring & teaching apprentices. i think of men & women, the zen masters of today, taking young people under their wings, helping others who are mixed-up about their journeys in life. i think of clean, white, organized, & simple homes. i think of nature, of greens and blues and natural things.

but, i can’t really put a finger on what zen is. or i cannot say it with words.

it is simplicity. it is living in the present moment. it is breathing deeply. it is a way of being. a way of living. yeah. that’s what it is… it is being aware. present. alive. conscious. and drawing on the peace that is available in every moment. it is being true to who you are.

so, i thought that the best way to kick off a month of simplicity was to slow down and get a little zen groove on. time to just be. focus. and remind ourselves that life is as simple (or as complicated) as we choose to make it. simplicity, living a life of zen, is a conscious choice… one that we make every single moment. and we can seek that zen feeling anytime, any place.

so, sit back. and take a deep breath. wherever you are, whatever time it is, look up at the sky for a moment. be here. right now. and in this moment, while you breathe, think that this moment in life is beautiful. you are whole. beautiful. loved. let peace swirl through you.

hope you enjoy my zen-inspired photos from the first part of belovelive’s simplicity photo journey.

day 1. minimalist – having a zen moment by a swedish lake while my youth splashed about around me. though there was a lot going on, i still found a moment of quiet and peace.


day 2. mindful – after a successful weekend of camping with the youth and an emotional & powerful goodbye sunday at work, two of my teenage boys gave me this cute little seal, asking me to promise to take him with me whenever i fly anywhere. i promised. and i named him. buddy. it was such an important day for mindful reflection and awareness of all that i have experienced in sweden.


day 3. monochrome – walking all over stockholm will present many, many opportunities for fabulous photos. in this moment, my love & i were celebrating & feeling really good, and the music that this street band was playing expressed our emotions just perfectly.


day 4. unbusy – tuesday afternoon i took a moment to myself to just soak it all in…. because now, the crazy moving preparations have begun. it’s insanity from now until the end of july! i need to remember to make some space for simplicity in my life.


day 5. balance – love for yourself. love for others. love for nature. it’s simple really.


take it easy, my friends. and take some time to just be. peace & love.

who’s ready for a more simple life?


i wonder… do we have our priorities screwed up? are we living life like little rats? running a meaningless or shallow race? work. play. get. spend. repeat. do we really enjoy life? do we take it for granted? or do we appreciate every moment? do we think of others? or ourselves? what is most important in our lives?

bottom line: is there a way to bring more meaning to our lives, to feel a deeper sense of joy and peace?

i believe that there is an amazing life waiting for each one of us. a deep, soul-filled, completely content & happy life where we feel peace. a life where we are like water flowing in a river, steady & strong, no matter what comes our way. a life where we are like a tall, strong tree… grounded and stable, but bending & swaying in the wind. i believe that there is a way for us to live life and feel peace, come what may. no matter what happens. in good times & i difficult ones.

the thing is, that deep and meaningful life that we want doesn’t come to us through material things, power, or status. we create the life that we want by living simply and by simply living. so, that’s what this month is all about.


you know, i am moving out of my apartment here in sweden this month. and with that, comes lots of going through stuff. scaling down, giving away, reassessing what i want, what i need, and what’s really important. and you know what? i don’t need that much. my love and i will be staying in sweden for another month after moving out of our apartment, but then, it’s off to the states! and we are only taking with us what fits in 2 suitcases each. yep. that’s it.

so, with all that in mind, i decided that june would be the perfect month for a journey of simplicity. of rediscovering a more simple way of life, a more meaningful and peaceful way of being and living. one that is connected to my soul, to nature, and to others.

so, gear up, friends! june’s photo a day is all about getting back to basics, slowing down, and enjoying life one simple moment at a time! i guarantee, if we all take the time to do this, by the end of june we will have journeyed to a new place within our souls and reconnected with our selves and each other.

june photo a day

if you wanna know how to join in, play along, and get in contact with others who will be keepin’ it simple this month, just click here.

peace and love. it’s that simple.

keepin’ it simple.

i know that i begin a lot of my posts by talking about the weather. but, weather seems to affect my mood tremendously, for better or for worse. so, i’m gonna write a little about how things are meteorologically in sweden right now.



it ain’t so great. so much for all of may being the highlight of the summer. the beginning was stunning, but the past week has been chilly, windy, and a little gray. today has been really gray, with bursts of rain soaking everything outside. but, today my mood is not matching the weather in a gray, depressed kinda way, but rather a cozy, peaceful way. i’ve been nesting today. sure, i worked this morning, but after arriving home again mid-afternoon, i put on cozy clothes and settled in. it’s late enough that i don’t feel bad sipping on a glass of red wine while i type this. and i keep turning my head to gaze outside the window into the grayness. i lit candles too, something i haven’t done much lately – except the one that i light when i write. it’s a little strange to light lots of candles when the sun doesn’t set till after 10pm. but, it’s so dark today, the candles only add to the atmosphere.

this afternoon, as i searched online for “stuff” to fill our apartment with, i’m also thinking about simplicity. and while we will be buying new things and working to surround ourselves with beautiful things, we also want there to be a simplicity, a calmness to our life. that’s how we roll. i suppose you could say we are fairly mellow people, who have bursts and fits of dancing and belly-hurting laughter. we want simple because it feels more real. it feels more free and open, both inside our home and inside our souls. living a life of simplicity is a constant reminder of what is really important. we may have nice stuff around us, but it’s more about the space, the design, and the meaning of things than about keeping every single thing that we have or have had. we know the things that makes us feel peace, free, creative, joy… and those things that are priceless. these are the things that we want around us. these are the things that we wish to fill our days and moments with. quiet evenings with friends and family. movies on our sofa, wrapped up under a shared blanket. sipping coffee or a glass of wine on a balcony. a place to write and draw and create. a place to lay our head and rest. a home where everyone feels welcome and at peace. a road trip to a new or familiar place. a chance to wander in nature, whether it be by the sea or in the woods. journeys to far away places.

some of these may not seem simplistic to you, but for us, for me, it’s all about the simplicity of living the present moment. it’s all about people. bottom line, it’s all about peace. this is what is most important: being true to myself. loving others. feeling peace. and spreading that peace forward. the end. simple. meaningful. a life filled with moments where i just breathe in deeply, and where i make a space around me where others feel that it is safe to breathe. and be.

so, for my six senses sunday this week, i thought i’d share some of the simple moments i have found during the past week.

see: a new issue of the magazine, the simple things. i just love this magazine. it’s so organic, homey, just lovely. and simple. the big, bright moon… shining for all of us, all around the world. the bright, green leaves.

smell: the fragrant flowers bursting forth on the trees. the simple pink rose on our coffee table. it smells like spring everywhere i go. and i love it!

touch: the grass beneath my feet (of course, i took off my flip flops!). the freedom of wearing the flip flops.

taste: an amaaaazing middle eastern dinner with my love to celebrate her birthday. oh. so. good.

hear: the purring of  peaceful, snoozing cat.

feel: overwhelmed and privileged by the love & life i share with my love.

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peace and love and simplicity.

7 days. 7 ways.

i seriously believe that every single day it is possible to celebrate something. and that’s why i created april’s photo a day journey about life. i had the help of many different people (many of you) to come up with words that have something to do with life. and the opportunity to have a word as a prompt every day, invites us (me) to find something to reflect on every day. what i have found, is that this opportunity to focus and reflect often teaches me something. or gives me a chance to think about something that i haven’t thought about in a while. not to mention, it forces my creativity a bit.

it is ironic, or coincidental, or destiny or something that i chose the journey to be about life in april. a month which, so far, has been pretty tough in our little home. having to find something to celebrate every day helps me to get out of my head, away from my worry, and remember to breathe.

and ya know what? i have found something beautiful, a moment to celebrate, every single day. take a peek at my journey so far…

day 1: (new) beginning

i began april with a tasty breakfast, some coffee, and a good book: on the road by jack kerouac

i began april with a tasty breakfast, some coffee, and a good book: on the road by jack kerouac

day 2: breathe

breathe: "it is better to have your head in the clouds, and know where you are... than to #breathe the clearer atmosphere below them, and think that you are in paradise." henry david thoreau

breathe: “it is better to have your head in the clouds, and know where you are… than to #breathe the clearer atmosphere below them, and think that you are in paradise.” henry david thoreau

day 3: wisdom

wisdom: a message from the universe in my inbox on this day. perfect timing.

wisdom: a message from the universe in my inbox on this day. perfect timing. get your own message here.

day 4: simple

simple: our newly bought, simple, danish-designed thermos. love it!

simple: our newly bought, simple, danish-designed thermos. love it!

day 5: wild

wild: a posted on this the other day. it's a awesome song.

wild: i posted on this the other day. it’s a awesome song.

day 6: chaos

chaos: my love trying to figure out her first semester schedule at unca. a majorly chaotic puzzle, but sooo exciting.

chaos: my love trying to figure out her first semester schedule at unca. a majorly chaotic puzzle, but sooo exciting.

day 7: confusing

confusing: the weather has been all over the place today. seriously. we've had everything. but, some moments have been breathtaking.

confusing: the weather has been all over the place today. seriously. we’ve had everything. but, some moments have been breathtaking.

there ya go! my beautiful moments from this past week where i simply sat back, breathed in life, and remembered that simply being alive is reason enough to celebrate.

if you’d like to join the photo journey, which may or may not lead to you taking photos, click here to get the list. or look at the bottom of this page. there’s you’ll find all the word prompts for the upcoming week.

i hope that you had a week full of tiny little moments that took your breath away. or, if you are dealing with something really tough in your life right now, like my love and i are, then i wish you moments of deep peace. moments when you remember that just as you about to give up, you can keep moving forward. the power is yours. you determine your life. and you, my friends, were meant to have an amazing life.

tons of love & peace.

week 3: december photo a day. american style.

week three of my december photo challenge is now complete, and it has been so much fun to have a higher level of inspiration due to the change of scenery. yep. i’m posting from the states from now through the end of the challenge. woo hoo!

the words for the week were:

joy, listening, old/new, carols, simple, cold, and elephant.

and the photos:








don’t give up yet! this coming week is gonna be goooood!