Day of renewal

A few weeks ago, a girlfriend and I had the opportunity to attend a day long retreat. Another dear friend and two others put together the event, and after reading about it, I felt drawn to attend; not only to support my soul sister, but to feed my own soul. How often do we do for others first? I know the answer to that question, loud and clear, and I’m guessing so do you. As women, it’s our nature to give to everyone before ourselves. That’s why this retreat was so important to me.

The first thing that caught my eye was when I read, Renew your Compassionate Heart – Spring Retreat. It drew me in, and I immediately reached out to my friend to find out more. Who doesn’t want to connect with their heart, stop the chatter, listen to our inner messages, and trust our intuition?

As the morning arrived, I set my intentions for the day; promising to stay open to receive any blessing or guidance. When we walked into the space I was blown away by the thoughtful detail; it was both inviting and comfortable. Different colored mats/cushions were placed in a circle, and in the middle, an alter of sorts, to place something personal we brought to represent ourselves for the retreat.

Throughout the day we connected to our mind, body and soul which included yoga, and centering breathing techniques. It was a day of self-care. We enjoyed an organic lunch, which was eaten in silence. That was a surprise to everyone in the room…..HA. It actually made people enjoy and savor every bite. After thirty minutes, we talked and laughed about some of the silent experiences.

The end of the day was spent with the third and final speaker, my friend, as she told personal stories, and experiences of reconnecting to her own heart. It was honest, raw and real. I would bet her stories resonated with everyone in the room.

We all have great triumphs and painful struggles; intertwining us as humans. Connecting with our heart, showing self-compassion, listening to our inner truth, and replenishing our spirit was experienced on the day of renewal. I hope you make the time to renew your compassionate heart…..Namaste.

xoxox…..Sheryl

Delizioso Vino

Recently I was invited to an annual wine dinner with a small group of friends that take turns hosting the event. The hosts determine what country, region or area the wine must come from….basically, whatever rules they want, they get…..HA!

This year’s hosts decided on wines from Italy…..no particular region, just any Italian wine. There would be five courses, and by luck of the draw I handled the first course, which included an Italian appetizer paired with a wine to enhance it’s flavor.

In my opinion, I had one of the easier picks; my wine had to be white since it was the first course. Any wines following would gradually taste bolder (explained in my simple, don’t know a lot about wine, kind of way). After determining my list of ingredients, I headed to a well-known Italian delicatessen, grocery and liquor store. They had exactly what I was looking for.

As good fortune would have it, there was a gentleman in the wine section helping with questions. I told him what I was serving, and what I thought might go with the course. He led me to the perfect selection; two bottles of an Italian Prosecco…….SCORE!

Part of the assignment when selecting the menu and wine is a short presentation about the food, wine region, winery, or any other pertinent information, regardless if it’s true or not. It’s part of the fun and lots of laughter is heard through-out the evening.

The dinner usually gets lively very quickly, and there’s no rush between courses. We take our time to savor each bite and sip the wine. Some wines seem to pair perfectly with the course. This year one of the wines was described to have a smell like a burning motor on a vacuum cleaner when something gets stuck or a rubber tire….LOL. It wasn’t one of the top favorites.

The best part of the evening wasn’t just the delizioso vino, but also spending time with friends, laughing, telling stories, and getting caught up on everyone’s lives since we last met. I love this annual tradition, and I’m pretty sure I’m up next. Hmmm…..so many options, stay tuned.

baci baci……Sheryl

Winter, he’s a jokester

Usually, winters in the midwest are cold, often brutal and long, however, this winter season has been milder than most. A few weeks ago a warm spell swept through the area that tricked me into putting my heavy, winter coat away. It was a wonderful surprise when the temperatures hit 70 degrees. Then, just like that, the cold, harsh winds returned to remind me. For some reason I couldn’t get it into my head, and every morning I’m surprised by the cold temps. Even though spring is on the horizon and just days away, to top it off…..old man winter decided to dump several inches of snow.

Living within a few miles of the lakefront, we are subject to lake effect snow. This week my area was in the path of a heavy storm. It fell on-and-off for two days, and in the end had accumulated about a foot. It was beautiful but……….Holy Snowstorm, Batman!

I don’t have a regular handyman that plows my driveway, so it’s usually, my children and me (in any combination). The first day it snowed, I was driving home dreading the pending chore, but upon my arrival was thrilled to see it was clean, and soon learned my sweet girl surprised me. The next day snow accumulation was heavier, and decided to work a half day to help clear once the storm subsided.

My daughter and I shoveled for most of an hour to clear the heavy snow. It felt good once the job was complete, and the snow had stopped. Just when I thought winter was over and spring was here, I was reminded to bring back my heavy, winter coat, prepare for cold days, and not to judge a warm spell or a book by it’s cover. Winter…..he’s a jokester, and here to stay for a spell.

xoxox…..Sheryl

PS…..Wouldn’t you know, my plow-guy showed up later that evening, but we had long finished……….drat, on our timing!

Fair game

I’ve been with my company for eleven years, and in all that time it’s been a well-known secret that when someone leaves, whatever was left in their cube or office is fair game for the takers. A week ago, I was working with a colleague and in the process of a project discovered two, fancy, expensive ergonomic desk chairs that had been abandoned. These chairs are like gold, and it’s very difficult to get your hands on one.

We immediately looked at each other, knowing what the other one was thinking. The only problem we could foresee was the chairs were on the other side of the building from our department. We couldn’t believe they hadn’t already been scavenged. The week went by, and we thought if they were still available the next week, we would make our plan to confiscate the goods……HA!

The day prior, we made sure the chairs were still available, put our plan in place, and would arrive at work earlier than most people…..basically at the crack of dawn. Once we both arrived, we made our way to the other side, nabbed the chairs and headed back. What we hadn’t plan for was the loud, annoying, racket the chairs made going across the tile floor…..for the love of.

On our journey, we encountered an employee they we’d seen over the years, but didn’t know very well. We smiled as we acted like it was a normal occurrence to be moving chairs at dawn. We were doing everything to keep from busting out laughing at our antics, and seemed to take us forever to get to our area.

We finally arrived at each of our destinations, I was thrilled as I sat down, but almost flew out of it backwards. The chair was reclined as far as it could go. As well as being reclined it was so low, it was almost like sitting on the floor……WHAT? It had several levers and buttons and none seemed to be working properly. After fiddling with them for a bit, thought I needed help.

I quickly ran to my friend’s office and she was having the exact same issues. OMG…..they were both broken! We burst out laughing. It was clear why no one had confiscated the chairs…..LOL! Now what? Ummm…..we have to freaking take the chairs back to the other side…..are you kidding me?!

Here we go again……for a second time making a loud, irritating racket, feeling like fools. Why we didn’t make sure before we took them is beyond both of us….deserves us right! Who do you think we ran into for the second time that morning? The same gentlemen we passed earlier. We commented about the broken chairs and he had already known……oh my gosh….no words!

Even though the chairs were fair game according to the well-known secret, we certainly learned our lesson that morning, and won’t be confiscating chairs, anytime soon. Why do we think there is always something better around the corner? It’s the illusions they create that draw people in. Our chairs were much better than the illusion of the fancy, expensive ones. Being happy in the present will serve us far better than being potentially happy with something on the horizon.

xoxox…..Sheryl

PS….the one positive outcome of the story was we worked up a healthy sweat….haha

 

Sleepover

Growing up, having sleepovers was a normal part of my childhood memories. It was one of those special events I looked forward to attending. I remember getting excited at the thought of being able to stay up late, laugh, share secrets, and basically hang out with my closest girlfriends. Now when my girlfriends get together, sleepover memories and adventures are often part of the conversation.

This past weekend I was invited to spend the night at a friend’s house, about ninety minutes from home. We were having dinner with a group of friends nearby, and she offered me one of her guest rooms for the night. “Absolutely”……which ultimately made things much easier for me.

After a fun night of having dinner with friends, we headed back to her house, washed our face, got in our jammie pants, fixed a beverage, and sat down for some good old fashioned girl-talk, and plenty of laughter.

The next morning we weren’t in any hurry, had no place to be; as we sipped coffee, talked and laughed about random topics. We took our time getting dressed and out the door, did a little shopping and had a late lunch, before heading back the ninety minutes to home.

What a fun sleepover it was. Having girlfriends to share your heart, and nourish your soul is a blessing from above. Make the moments count by saying yes to adventure; it will feed both your soul and your friendship. Here’s to the next sleepover!

xoxox…..Sheryl