Posts Tagged With: joy

Reflections of Joy

My 7-year-old, Parker, has been writing stories lately. These stories are always wildly imaginative. Her latest story is entitled, “The Zoo is the Greatest Place on Earth.” The zoo in her story is not just any ‘ol zoo. Oh, no, it features special animals like polka dotted polar bears and pink penguins. Who wouldn’t love to visit a zoo like that?

My girl is a natural storyteller. When she shares her stories with me, great joy can be seen in her eyes, and heard in her voice.

Her joy of telling a story got me thinking about my 2013 One Word: Joy. We all seems to be quick to move on these days. We’re busy, busy, busy. We move on to the next big thing, leaving little, or no time for reflection.

It’s important that we “stop and smell the roses” on occasion if we truly want to understand where we’ve been, how far we have come, and to see the road ahead more clearly.

2013 Joy |  I think focusing on the word joy for 2013 made me stop and look for it intentionally. Having joy takes effort. It’s a choice we make. And, I chose joy (most of the time).

I took time to do things that brought me joy, of course, but I also took the time to look for joy in the little things around me everyday. Surprisingly, it wasn’t that hard to find. See, looking for it does work!



I found Joy in glorious sunrises out my back door. Joy in nature. Joy in autumn smells, color and weather. Joy in His word, usually when I wasn’t looking for it. Funny how that worked. Joy in my children’s’ laughter. Joy in watching the girls grow into the young ladies they are becoming. Joy in the mess of craft days. Oh, yes, there is joy in glitter, everywhere. Joy in photography, and trips to the mountains. You get the idea…

So, before you rush into 2014, take a moment to reflect on the last 365 days you’ve lived. That is a lot of days. Were they well spent? Did you use them to your advantage? Did you accomplish what you wanted in 2013; where did you fall short? How have you grown personally, professionally, or spiritually?

Before we can see where we’re going, we need to know where we’ve been.

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Bring on the new year…

The Christmas season is officially over. You know how you can tell? Because the kids have played with all their toys and are now bored. Commence the bickering! The tree has yet to be packed away. And I don’t care.

I got an extra special gift this year. The flu. Awesome. Parker had it Saturday of last week. Christmas Eve was Alexandra’s turn. But mine was saved for Christmas Day.  At least I didn’t have to cook. We were invited to eat with friends, but I stayed home…holding down the couch.


iPod Touch

She got her iPod Touch but not before I made her suffer a little. I wrapped it in her old cell phone box, then placed that in a box, which I wrapped, and repeated two more times. There was confusion, then tears of joy. Priceless.

Giant sock monkey

Giant sock monkey

Her big sis was responsible for finding this giant sock monkey. The boots are hers. She didn’t need anything else!

Shop til you drop

She’s out for the count

A trip to the mall to spend gift cards and cash…we shopped til we dropped. Which in 7-year-old time is approximately 2 hours. If we are lucky.

I woke from my flu coma on Friday, walked outside to the garage for bottles of water, and spotted these loving sights in the backyard:

Frost on branch

Winter branch

The sunrise shining through sleeping leaves. Today is the day He has made.



Now, bring on the new year!

Categories: December Daily, Holidays, In the Moment Photography, Joy, Life | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Joy: It’s about the little things…

It's the little things, joy

App used to apply text: Rhonna

Halloween decor

Because flowers make me happy…

Fall colors

Our massive tree n the front yard…like 4-stories tall!


Aspen in our backyard…the color is not brilliant when planted in the city, but I love it anyway…

Fall decor

Our front porch…still need more pumpkins…

Welcome mat

Friends always welcome…

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What’s your greatest joy?

According to a recent survey, 36% of people said THIS  brings them the greatest joy.

Can you guess what THIS is?

What brings people the greatest joy is not a person. Surprisingly, THIS ranked higher than a good night out, a vacation, and even monkey piling!

Give up? Over a third of people say a clean house brings them the greatest joy.

As someone who has two kids, two stinky dogs, and a hubby who doesn’t know where we keep the dust pan, a clean house is a luxury. Although I clean often; it doesn’t stay that way for long.

I do love me a clean house. But, greatest joy?

Since JOY is my one little word for 2013, this question got me thinking…



If I were to list what brings me great joy, and people can’t be on the list, what would it be?

  1. A day spent in the mountains (this is why I live in Colorado)
  2. A “good day” free of kids fighting and drama
  3. A good meal with friends (that I don’t have to cook)
  4. Craft days (preferably it’s raining too)
  5. A good cup of coffee (morning cup is best)
  6. Hubby surprising me with something sweet
  7. Chocolate
  8. The whole season of autumn
  9. Acupuncture treatment (it’s my massage and relaxation)
  10. A clean house (especially if someone else has cleaned it)

Yep, a clean would be on that list, but it’s way down on the list. But, mostly the list is simple, everyday joyful things.

Finding everyday joy can be simple things. Isn’t that what life should be about? Joy. And, if a clean house is what brings you the greatest joy…then by all means, go clean your house!

But if it is something else, shouldn’t you try to do it every day? Or, at the very least one thing on your list.

So, it’s your turn. What’s on your greatest joy list?


*This MindBender question brought to you by the Dom & Jane Morning Radio Show. The MindBinder books make great gifts too. We have have one of the books and, as a family, we sit around and try to answer these mind binding questions. We also listen to the MindBender question every morning on the way to school. The books make great road trip games too!

*I was not paid for this endorsement. I just love these books!

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Joy | Bird Watching


bird watching

bird watching

bird watching

bird watching

What is joy?

It is a bird
That we all want to catch
It is the same bird
That we all love to see flying

– Sri Chinmoy


Check back on June 5 for7 Tips for Photographing Urban Wildlife

Linked up on: homework

Categories: Joy, Photography | Tags: , , , , | 2 Comments

Turning 34…again!

Yeah, it was my birthday last week. Birthdays are a good thing. The more you have the more you should celebrate.

I chose Greek for my birthday dinner. Axios Estiatorio in Denver’s neighborhood known as Berkeley. (If you are want to kill some time you can read the complete restaurant review I posted here.) Hint: I give it 5 out of 5 stars.

The basic run down is this: The Mezze (Starter) was Keftedes Meatballs (Lamb-Tomato Sauce, Kefalotiri Cheese, Pita $9).

greek meatballs

Keftedes Meatballs

Hubby’s one and only Greek food experience has been with a Gyros. I love Greek, but never get to eat it. It makes me very happy that hubby went on a little food adventure with me to Axios. This is going to become my favorite restaurant!



It was a tough choice but hubby surprised me and ordered the Halibut. He never orders fish unless it’s fried.



I had my mouth ready for Spanakopita (my favorite Greek dish), but was talked into Kreopita (Spanakopita’s Lamb cousin). Kreopita is my new favorite dish, although the Rabbit Stifado and the Lamb Giouvetsi will need to be tasted before I can give my final verdict.

chocolate cream pie

Chocolate cream pie

The Baklava was calling my name, but we opted for saving desert for birthday pie later in the evening with friends. See, the candles say I am 34. The candles don’t lie!

may  snow

May 1st snow

The next morning, May 1st, there was snow on the ground in Colorado. And, May 2nd it was melted away.

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