In 2012 we challenged you to write 12 letters of Gratitude to people that influenced your life. Many of you did this and wrote amazing stories of the experience.
This year 2013 we are focusing on BEING PRESENT. This is your life. Each day is a gift. You can't turn in yesterday for more time. So make the most of each day and continue to be grateful and embrace life! Be Present! We are changing the world...ONE DAY AT A TIME!

Saturday, August 18, 2012


I read a blog post this year from someone that talked about wanting to be a finisher.  I know it was a friend that wrote it (at least I believe it was...) but I read a lot of blogs and I can't pin down which friend.  But here is a shout out to them..  THANK YOU FOR THE INSPIRATION!  I have thought about that post many times over the past months.  I have a pile of 10 books on my night stand.  Books on parenting, relationships, schooling, self esteem, self government.  I am notorious famous for buying books.  Unfortunately I am infamous for NOT finishing them.  Don't get me wrong, I finish many, many books.  But they are usually either the Scriptures (over and over), the most recent fiction series I am working on or Dr. Suess.  The self help books appeal to me on so many levels.  But the follow through...the sealing of the deal often seems to be a struggle.

So reading this blog post from a fellow peer and contemporary that struggles with the same passion for things and the ever illusive closure inspired me to want to do better.  But that was it...I wanted to.  My mom used to say, "Set Goals!  Write them down!  Work for them.  If you don't write it down it is only a wish."

This led to a huge personal challenge.  I wanted to finish something.  Not just something but goals, my goals for 2012.  They have grown as the year has past.  Some have changed shape, but the progress is thrilling.  The Butterfly Project was the beginning of the changes for me this year.  A good 60 letters into the project I have learned a great deal.  I am far from my goal.  And whether I have a writing marathon or spill my goal over into 2013 I feel so grateful for all I have gained and shared from this project.  I have people close to me and some I have met solely through the project writing me about the amazing and inspiring experiences they have had with becoming more grateful and expressing it.  I have had people whose letters were not received in the spirit they were shared, and I hurt with them over the notion.  But I assure you all...the biggest (and most valuable) change comes from within, not externally.  The Project is intended to cultivate the BUTTERFLY in YOU!  If in the process you reach, lift, change, help, inspire and cultivate a Butterfly in someone else that is just Icing On The Cake!  I KNOW this was inspiration for me to take and extend the challenge to express our gratitude to loved ones.

My next goal this year was to run a 5K.  This is a new goal that I set in July.  I could walk a 5K.  I have walked on and off for many years.  So walking really wasn't that big of a challenge to me.  But living with my runner husband and having NEVER run in my life, I have always dreaded it.  Then, when my mom died my sister "became" a runner.  She just DID IT!  I remember thinking, "Great for her!  But I could never do that, even if I wanted to."  Is anyone else self depricating hard on themselves like that?

The past two years I have had the opportunity to attend our youth group's girls camp.  The first year as a cabin mom and this year as a camp photographer.  The experience really was life changing.  Camp is where I truly started believing I COULD do difficult things!  They have a ropes course that is strung between telephone poles.  One climbs a pole (believe me they ARE higher than they look) and with climbing gear on (just in case) does one of a few options, walks across a rope with hanging ropes every few feet to assist you across, jumps from a platform to catch a trapeze bar, or walks across a rope balancing and holding another rope strung from pole to pole at chest height as an aide to get you across.  NONE of this is easy.  But it isn't meant to be.  The experience is call High Cope.  When things are hard, when we feel like we are at the end of our rope, when life gets challenging (and it will, over and over again) the experience is to teach the girls that they can work through it!  They can COPE with the hard challenges that are sure to face them in life.  With dozens of cheerleaders on the ground they succeed!  And the crowd goes wild, we scream and we shout at the accomplishment.  BELIEVE me, it IS an accomplishment.  This year I slayed a giant.  Last year I missed the trapeze bar, thank heaven for the JUST IN CASE gear.  But this year I DID IT!  Getting back up on the horse so to speak and conquering the fear was nothing short of exhilarating.

Something has switched in my brain and I gathered my children together recently.  We talked and I told them, "I have been hearing the word 'can't' a lot at our house lately.  I want it to stop."  But what a hypocrite I was.  I didn't say, "I can't run a 5K" outloud.  I would very unlikely say anything like that in front of the children.  But I whispered it to one of the most important people in my life all the time...ME!

So this week I turned over a NEW LEAF!  I CAN run a 5K.  It WON'T be easy.  But that is ok, because I have learned that I CAN cope, I CAN do hard things, I CAN complete my goals.  AND I DID complete week ONE of the training for a couch to 5K.  Week ONE down, 9 more to go.  WOW, I am 10% of the way there already.  There is one thing I Can't do...  I Can't wait to complete this goal.  My goal is written down, my plan is set.  I have a cheering section.   Watch out world...  I am going to be a finisher yet!

Here are the links to:
Couch to 5K (Cool Running)
Podrunner Intervals

Changing the world...One LETTER/ONE Goal at a time!

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