Crack Up To What It’s Supposed To Be

My daughter is away at camp for 3 weeks. I had visions of catching up, resting up and attending to all of the things I had on my list  for the last year. For sure at the top was seeing friends and dining in the backyard.

The vision I missed was the one where I was so bone tired that I found myself feeling cracked. Like the pipe in our powder room. The one that set our powder room floor awave. The one that the plumbers said they couldn’t find and then let out an “oh, here it is…”

I also missed the vision of re-doing the basement bathroom. Who knew the powder room down there was experiencing water damage and new mold. Really? Argh. I wanted to spend my days laughing with friends and shopping at the new IKEA. Instead, I was tethered to the house waiting for workmen again.

But in the waiting, something shifted. I realized that I wasn’t quite as cracked as I thought. I was tired, but actually leaning toward grateful. Grateful for the friend who noticed the floor. Grateful that I have great plumbers who made me the first stop the next morning. Grateful that the cost to fix the pipe was reasonable to me. Grateful that my husband could understand what the heck the mold guy was talking about and could take time off of work to be here, when I couldn’t be.

Grateful it wasn’t worse.

It’s so easy to get caught up in what goes wrong. But what about getting caught up in what goes right? How about appreciating the people who show up and help? Or the job you have that pays you well enough that you can afford to fix it? How about the cold ice in the freezer to fill your glass at the end of the day, as you reflect on how it really will be?. Or the knowing that your family is safe and that no one is sick from it?

Now, when I walk by the plastic trash bag covering the hole in the wall to the basement, I see it as canvas. I can project anything I want on it. And the bathroom in the basement? Well, hopefully Tuesday will bring news of nothing serious and the boys can get to dry walling it back up. Worst thing, we have it remediated and I re-tile the whole thing. And, if I get to repaint it? Purple it is!

Years ago, a wise friend gave me a coffee cup. It’s a great color green and says, “Friends”. Over many washings it developed a chip in the rim and a crack down the side, but it still holds liquid. I love to use it. Every time I look at it, I feel like she is reminding me that we are all cracked. And still, we are able to hold what we need to.


How do you MindFULLY crack and then use what is broken to make something new? Let us know!

Gratitude Attitude

On Sunday evening, I dragged myself home from a 3 week, travel whirlwind. Embedded in those three weeks was in-depth work around the emotional topic of money, a family Bat Mitzvah, a college reunion and a weekend with my mom at the Sanity Rally in DC. On Monday I cleaned my house.  Thinking it was all behind, I started to relax.

On Tuesday I got word of a new project, set to kick off this week and requiring I get back on a plane for 10 more days. On Wednesday I lifted my daughters backpack into the trunk, threw my back out and started crying. I was officially overwhelmed.

You see, I had lost my “gratitude attitude”.  All of the things that had me on the go, are blessings for which I am truly grateful; family, friends and good work. But I was exhausted and I forgot. And then on Thursday when my back pain subsided,  a friend said, ” go forth and prosper, lunch with me will still be here when you get back” and the prospect of funding a room over the garage set in, I cried even harder. Not because I was relieved, but because I was so mad at myself for forgetting to be grateful for all I was lucky enough to be doing.

How can we remember?

One way I learned of, years ago, is to keep a gratitude journal by my bed and before going to sleep, jot down 5 things one is grateful for that day. As with many tools of its kind, I peter in and out over time. Yet when I do it, I feel better. Somehow the goodness gets recorded in my soul as I drift off to sleep. I chuckle when I look through it. Some of the same names and feeling are there, year after year. That is certainly something to be grateful for.

On the plane last week, I came across a small blurb about a website that  encourages members to list five things they are grateful for everyday. You can write your thoughts,  show photos and upload videos and interact with others.  Check out

Yesterday I felt the grace in small things. Beautiful weather, two walks, a beauty treatment and a  massage.  I felt  grateful for a husband who encourages me to take time for myself, a daughter who says, “go mom, you need some Robin time!” and a back that feels better as the days go by.

Ah yes, we all have so much to be grateful for. Now I hope I can simply remember this when I am lying in the hotel room at 2am waiting to fall asleep. Those deep dark nights are when I tend to really forget. So the question for this week is, “how can I feel the gratitude in the glow of the alarm clock?”

What are you MindFULLY grateful for and how do you remember?