the sacred everyday

week forty eight // the week that i gave thanks

30 Nov 2015

hey folks! and happy monday to you! i sure do hope that you all had a wonderful weekend. i, myself, truly truly did. what with thanksgiving and the start of the holiday season and time with my love, it was just great.

me

before the weekend, i had a pretty ok week too. much was focused on my preparations for thanksgiving. and the rest of my time was filled with living those regular life days and regular life moments – the ones that i am learning are what really take my breath away.

the very beginning of the week was super cold, everything was frozen and gorgeous with amazing sunrises and even more amazing sunsets, what with the full moon and such. so, i got out and enjoyed nature for a short little bit. and i definitely enjoyed standing at my window, as you know i love to do.
wheat

hydrangea autumn

frozen leaf

shoes boots me

however, one day, tuesday i think, i woke with a migrane. and this, my friends, never happens to me.

it was one of those headaches that makes you feel nauseous. i wanted to get up, i felt like i needed to get up to do all of the things that i usually do, but somehow i realized that my body was telling me to stay put. so, i stayed in bed all morning long. i took a detox from social media and the internet. i remember that i actually spent an hour or so just holding my cup of coffee in silence. i let my mind wander. i felt myself breath. i sipped my coffee. something inside me told me that i needed this morning to myself to ride out the shift that is occurring in my life. it’s so hard to put into words, but something is shifting, life is changing, and so much action and newness is to come.

and, giving myself that time to just be alone + to just be, healed my headache and calmed my soul. by afternoon, i was up and about, meeting my love downtown and then attending another support grouping the evening.

coffee

lights park uppsala

then, on thursday, after racing to ikea for some last minute thanksgiving needs, riding my bike home in the freezing cold, catching up with my love for a meeting at the hospital, and getting home to prepare dinner, lina and i went to our first christmas concert. we had an amazing walk through the city, soaked up the inspiring and beautiful music of the concert, and ended the night by coming home late, falling into bed, high from the night that we had shared. grateful for the magical city that we live in and the chance for my love to see (and talk with!) her biggest idol and role model.

cathedral uppsala

helene sjöholm

uppsala cathedral downtown

then, friday came. the day of the holiday dinner with our family who lives in town with us. i spent the whole day in the kitchen. it was a freaking mess, and i loved every minute of it. i had it all under control by 7:00 though; so much so that, as the guests arrived, i was able to put a spiked cider hot toddy in their hands as soon as that took off their coats. let the cozy family time begin!

dinner was served about 7:30 and we sat around the coffee table in the living room. it was so relaxing, and fun, and beautiful. exactly as i had imagined it could be. perhaps a bit better. we drank bottles of red wine, lots of white, enjoyed the classic holiday food (which they loved), and there was so much love in that room that i thought that i just might burst. it was absolutely perfect, lasting well into the wee morning hours. and i could not have shared this thanksgiving with any more better people than we had here. they are truly some of my favorites. what a blessing it was. my heart is still full.

thanksgiving cooking

thanksgiving dinner family

this is me, giving a little “speech” + introducing my swedish family to my classic southern american thanksgiving meal. hehe. anecdotes are included.

thanksgiving dinner

thanksgiving dinner

after our thanksgiving dinner on friday, we have spent a very quiet weekend spent at home, only leaving to attend the little fireworks show that uppsala had at the castle to celebrate the beginning of advent. so. much. fun. fireworks for advent is a tradition that i have never even thought would have existed. but, uppsala, invited the city’s citizens to gather and celebrate by brightening up these very dark times, both all around us in nature as we enter the darkest days of the year, and all around the world, in all of the violence and hate that exists. they even announced that the fireworks served as a symbol of hope and strength, of remembering to carry on. so, basically, this was a tradition that i absolutely fell in love with. standing there with thousands of other people, my love’s arms around me in the cold, under a magical, brightly-lit sky.

so, we are pretty much in the holiday spirit here now. and loooooving it. we are most definitely planning on a cozy, simple holiday season together.

dark windows home

star advent window

advent candles

uppsala lights

uppsala lights

castle christmas lights

uppsala fireworks

uppsala advent fireworks

so, my friends, it’s time for us to begin a new week. and i am certain that this week will be a test of my strength, of what i have been learning for the past year. i have a lot to do this week. a lot of places to be, a lot of work, a lot of opportunities, and so much potential goodness. at the same time, it’s all scary and overwhelming. this, though, is where the rubber hits the road. will i stay grounded in my meditation practices? will i stay committed to my intention to a life centered on slow living and spirituality? can i integrate everything? will i say yes when i want to say yes, and no when i want to say no? will i stay open and listen to my soul?

what do you have going on this week? is it one of those where you know what’s coming, or do you think you’ll just have to see what happens as it happens?

no matter what you and i are facing, we’ve got this. this new week offers us so much. every single day is a new beginning, a chance to choose to create our life exactly as we want it that day. an opportunity to choose exactly how we live and respond and spread our energy. another day for which we can give thanks simply for being alive.

so, let’s get to it. happy monday, you beautiful people!

onwards + upwards! xoxo

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11 Comments

  • Reply SingTravelAct 1 Dec 2015 at 00:39

    This is great – I love your description of your dinner, and also of the week ahead. I’m facing something similar over the next three weeks, coming off of a holiday that gave me lots of time to reflect. I am approaching the coming weeks and beyond with a new perspective. It’s a lot to think about, and to write about – and it does involve consciously choosing to be in the moment, each and every moment. All the best.

    • Reply Liz 1 Dec 2015 at 09:30

      Sending you lots of peace and energy and strength to make it through this week feeling balanced and grounded. Love to you!

  • Reply kate365til 1 Dec 2015 at 02:47

    You live a beautiful life my dear. I love that you shared thanksgiving with all your Swedish friends!! What fun 🙂

    • Reply Liz 1 Dec 2015 at 09:30

      I am so blessed, that is for sure. And I do all I can to not take it for granted one second… as I know that you do as well. What a beautiful soul you are, love. xo

  • Reply Laura4NYC 1 Dec 2015 at 04:10

    Oh how great that you got to celebrate with the Swedish fam! They all look quite interested in what you have to say. I know of a few Americans in Germany who also celebrated on Friday or Saturday. It’s simply not doable else when Thursday is a normal workday abroad. I was off Thursday but unfortunately had to work on Friday again. Oh well…

  • Reply Farm Girl 1 Dec 2015 at 05:51

    Your frozen pictures are breathtakingly beautiful. So is your description of your wonderful Thanksgiving dinner and the weekend that followed. So much love, so much slow living, and so much intentional living in there!

    I hope your week will go well and you do everything you have to do, and find the time and dedication to do everything you want to do.
    I have the next three days off, which I plan to spend on writing, reading, hanging out with my love and the 4-legged babies, and planning this upcoming, joy-filled month.

    • Reply Liz 1 Dec 2015 at 09:29

      Oh, do enjoy your three days off, dear Miriam! That sounds beautiful. And I am certain that you will be immersed in love, slow living and intentionality as well. Sending you lots of love and peace and joy this season. xo

  • Reply Mani (A New Life Wandering) 1 Dec 2015 at 06:02

    That’s very interesting how you got a rare migraine and how you healed it. It must be nice to really take a [long] moment away from technology and listen and connect with ourselves. I wish I did it more often but more and more I can seem to just stray away from he computer for a long while. I guess I’m too addicted to it. Often times I wish that there was no internet for at least one hour a day so that I’d be forced to spend my free time doing other things.
    This week I’m traveling. On Thursday I’m heading to my hometown, Mexico City for 10 days to visit family and friends. We will be celebrating Christmas early since I won’t be there for Christmas.
    You mention a shift happening with yourself. I feel like there is a big shift happening in the world. I feel like December of this year is going to be deeply big for may people around the world. I have been anxious and a bit nervous for it for the last few days. I’m also hoping all of my flight connections go well considering December’s crazy weather.

    • Reply Liz 1 Dec 2015 at 09:28

      I am most definitnely sending lots of good vibes your way as you travel later this week. Yes, you are so right. I feel the shift happening globally too. And I know of many people who are feeling it personally. It is such a magical, mysterious, intense time right now I believe. I, too, tend to be quite attached to all of my devices, but I really really try to step back every now and then. I truly need it. I’ll bet that with all of your traveling you step back more than you realize. Traveling and experiencing new things definitely gives us a much-needed reality check, I believe. And so much inspiration too. xoxo

  • Reply Meghan 2 Dec 2015 at 03:29

    What a wonderful start to the holiday season, Liz (minus the migraine)! Despite the cause, I’m glad you had some time to slow down so you could appreciate even more the special Thursday night concert, Friday night Thanksgiving, the advent celebration, and the magic of setting up your home with your love. Also, sitting with each moment as it ticks by, coffee in hand, sounds like an ideal way to reconnect with yourself, tune into your soul, and listen to the universe.Wishing you a joyful and peaceful week! xoxo

    • Reply liz 2 Dec 2015 at 11:03

      It really was a beautiful, slow way to enter this season. Definitely very intentional and peaceful. I wish for you a ton of joy and peace this week too, wherever you are. 🙂 xoxo

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