Aging Gracefully

As I’ve noted numerous times in prior posts, since the months leading to and subsequent to my 29th birthday this past May, I’ve struggled considerably with growing older. Perhaps it’s really not the age or number itself I fear, but rather all I feel should go along with it. In my life, there are often a lot of “shoulds,” “I wish,” or reflections upon situations I could have handled differently. Too often, I compare myself to others of a similar age, longing for the “characteristic” life I feel they have or portray, without acknowledging their own struggles or hardships. It’s similar to celebrity singer and actress, Selena Gomez, who appears in ads, concerts, and magazines flaunting her pristine hair, makeup and clothing, but privately struggling and ultimately undergoing a lifesaving kidney transplant. From looking at her, I, myself, never would have guessed she was in kidney failure, or even ill with lupus. That’s the thing, though, people so often look at someone and based off their appearance deem them healthy or not. Shiny hair, pristine makeup and clothing, a bubbly personality – none of that is an indicator of health, or at least certainly not always. What appears on the outside is not always indicative of what’s unraveling inside.

With that being said, I recently started to contemplate a news story I heard and was intrigued by. One of the magazines I closely followed and read in the past, Allure Magazine, proudly declared last month they would no longer use the term “Anti-Aging.” So often, I’ve read seemingly countless articles instructing women and even men, on all the latest products and techniques specifically formulated to “combat all signs of aging.” In these articles, without so many words, it suggests aging is something to be feared, or to be disguised and avoided at all costs. A wrinkle around your eye area? Lines around your mouth? Sagging skin? All of these aforementioned supposed, “signs of aging,” come with specifically-formulated products to help avoid, disguise and discourage and are often touted in magazines and store shelves.

Growing Older Quote

Feeling as though they’d finally had enough, Allure Magazine took the first steps towards what I see as progress and a notion I wish I embraced many years ago, but most specifically in the months leading to and after my most recent birthday. In their words in last month’s issue of Allure, they stated, (via – https://www.allure.com/story/allure-magazine-phasing-out-the-word-anti-aging)

Allure Magazine – August 2017:

“This issue is the long-awaited, utterly necessary celebration of growing into your own skin – wrinkles and all. No one is suggesting giving up retinol. But changing the way we think about aging starts with changing the way we TALK about aging. With that in mind, starting with this issue, we are making a resolution to stop using the term, “anti-aging.” Whether we know it or not, we’re subtly reinforcing the message that aging is a condition we need to battle.”

If there’s one inevitability in life, it’s that we’re getting older. Every minute. Every second. We produced a video recently that featured 64-year-old gray-haired Jo Johnson, who made the poignant observation that aging should be appreciated because “some of us don’t get an opportunity to age.” Repeat after me: Growing older is a wonderful thing because it means that we get a chance, every day, to live a full, happy life.

Language matters. When talking about a woman over, say, 40, people tend to add qualifiers: “She looks great…for her age” or “She’s beautiful…for an older woman.” Catch yourself next time and consider what would happen if you just said, “She looks great.” Yes, Americans put youth on a pedestal. But let’s agree that appreciating the dewy rosiness of youth doesn’t mean we become suddenly hideous as years go by.”

Courage to Grow Up

After reading this statement and their stance on aging, I couldn’t be happier or more proud. Throughout the years, I’ve been an on/off reader of Allure, but after reading their declaration, their concept resonates with me beyond words. It summons a quote I read not long ago, which read: “Do not fear growing older, it is a privilege denied to many.”

Growing Older Quote 2

Isn’t it true though, when thinking about it? Countless infants, children, teens, young adults, even adults in middle-age, have succumbed to accidents, illnesses, and beyond; ultimately denied the opportunity to age. Instead of fearing aging, it can be seen as a chance to “ripen,” to gain knowledge and understanding. Instead of fearing aging, it can be embraced, wise words can be shared with younger generations and even our own generations. We all have stories to tell, experiences waiting to be recounted, and growing older gives us this opportunity.

 

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Wearable Words: The LWP Collection

Good afternoon, to you! We’re approaching the end of the week and in conjunction, the third and final blog post in The Little Word Project series I’ve been detailing this week! As promised, this blog post will fully detail the vast collections and products LWP offers. Though I’ve exclusively discussed their bracelets, which is the heart of their company, they also offer several other pieces, which are important to note and share. Also, as I stated in my last post, I’ll be sharing with you today the second LWP bracelet I own and how I came to receive it! Therefore, without further adieu, let’s take a deep “breath” (you’ll see what I mean in the next paragraph) and dive into that very bracelet!

My Second LWP Bracelet – “Breathe”

Given my intrigue and interest in The Little Words Project as a company after first receiving the Confidence bracelet in the prize package I won, I was overjoyed to receive a bracelet from the Beaded White collection with the word – Breathe.

LWP Believe          LWP Bag

The band, as you can see, is encased in Swarovski crystals with pink undertones. To me, the word Breathe was fitting, as I recall years ago while in college taking vocal lessons, my voice teacher informed me of my inconsistent breathing. While observing me sing, he often noted my lack of taking in deep breaths and came to understand that when under stress or when anxious, I tend to breathe inconsistently and can often walk around feeling even greater stress, as a result. Breathing deeply and often, without needing much explanation is crucial to all aspects of our lives, especially when under stress. People often remind each other in these times to remember to breathe. We can often become upset to the point, where our breathing is labored, clouding our ability to effectively communicate. Since receiving this bracelet, I often find myself glancing down at it during my times of stress as a constant, friendly and welcome reminder to do just that – breathe. At times, when stressed or anxious, I can forget to do something so seemingly simple – breathe. During those times when I can feel incapable of doing much else, there is always one thing I can do and that is to take in a deep breath and begin again. Now that I have this bracelet as a constant reminder, it’s a comfort to me. Many, many thanks to the wonderful team at The Little Words Project for their generosity in gifting me this bracelet.

The Little Words Project Collections: As previously noted, the LWP offerings are vast and include the following:

  • Beaded White or Gold

LWP beaded gold     LWP Beaded white

  • And Symbol

LWP and 2

  • Love Symbol

LWP love

  • Leather White or Gold

LWP Leather

  • Woven

LWP woven

  • The Sorority Collection

LWP sorority

  • Bridal Collection

LWP bridal

  • Little Extras (i.e. t-shirts, gift cards, gift wrapping, inspirational booklets, a mystery bracelet, & chokers)

LWP ChokerLWP tshirtLWP booklets

  • Bracelets That Give Back (25% of proceeds donated to designated charities/nonprofit organizations)

LWP Purple Elephant

  • Last Chance (in limited quantities)

LWP last chanc

Note: Choose the color of your bracelet beads, leather/woven/bead material, then choose your word(s).

Words to Chose From: Here are some of the many words you can choose from for your bracelet:

  • Dream
  • Believe
  • Breathe
  • Hope
  • Strength
  • Courage
  • Brave
  • Inspire
  • Fearless
  • Sparkle
  • Smile
  • Good Vibes
  • Blessed
  • Faith
  • My Person
  • Fierce
  • My Family
  • Be Happy
  • Laugh
  • Sister
  • Wanderlust
  • Free Spirit
  • Live
  • Namaste
  • Be Kind
  • Pray
  • Dance
  • Let Go
  • Love
  • Friend

My Favorites: Now that you’re familiar with the overall collections and offerings of LWP, I thought I’d conclude the three-part series by revealing some of my favorites from the product line-up:

We Rise By Lifting Others

Bracelets That Give Back: As I discussed at length in my second post, the Bracelets That Give Back collection deeply resonates with me for more reasons than one. An avid volunteer, firm believer in giving back to others and with a personal connection to one or more of the organizations benefiting from this initiative, this collection affords customers with not only a beautiful bracelet, but also serves as a donation to a worthy cause.

Spread Kindness Quote

Love Symbol Collection: This collection also stands out to me for a variety of reasons. True, genuine, romantic love is something I aspire to. I’ve noted several times on my blog, I have yet to experience it for myself, and for me, love whether romantic, platonic or through family, is a source of contentment and fulfillment. To know, feel, receive and experience love is the greatest gift.

Love Quote

The Words: Many, if not close to all of the words to choose from speaks volumes to me. As someone who has struggled with self-esteem, body-image and self-image issues my entire life, being able to see and wear words such as believe, brave, strength, breathe and courage on my arm, provides me with awareness and comfort. It also serves as a constant, visual reminder of my self-worth and bravery and that I am truly deserving of happiness and achieving my dreams.

Also, I think it is important to note my sister’s name is Hope; which is coincidentally, one of the words as an option for a LWP bracelet. Since birth, Hope has been not only a sister, but my best friend. She and I always say, “Sisters by chance, best friends by choice.”

Hope and I at her wedding:

0309

Well, there you have it! To whomever may be reading, thanks so much for following along with me on this journey as I detailed The Little Words Project! My sincere gratitude goes out to The Little Words Project for their generosity and kindness.

Kind Quote

 

 

“Share It”: Buy a Bracelet, Share the Love

Good Afternoon and welcome back to the second post in the “A Wristful of Words,” series partnering with Little Words Project (LWP). To whomever might be reading, thanks so much for following along on this journey as I profile LWP, a unique, philanthropic jewelry company changing lives one bracelet (and word!) at a time.

LWP logo

In today’s post, I’ll be focusing on just that – philanthropy and specifically how it relates to Little Words Project. Upon first receiving my LWP Confidence bracelet in the mail as a gift from entering the IT Cosmetics contest, I immediately began researching LWP and became enthralled and intrigued with all I discovered. Since my freshman year in high school, I’ve identified myself as an avid volunteer, taking part in many walks, tutoring young students, serving meals and babysitting young children in shelters, as well as host of other activities. To me, serving others and advocating wherever and whenever I can is of the utmost importance to me. To know I may have made a difference in someone’s life, no matter how small, is the ultimate gift and symbol of care.

It Cosmetics

Therefore, one aspect of LWP as a company, which immediately stood out to me is their “Bracelets That Give Back,” where altruism is at the heart of this collection. As detailed on the LWP website (littlewordsproject.com), every other month, LWP highlights a new organization geared towards helping women in various capacities. The chosen organization creates their own exclusive Little Word (such as “Be Strong”, “Confidence“, “Wish“, etc) which is then sold on the LWP website and select retailers (check littlewordsproject.com for a retailer nearest you!). At the end of the partnership year, 25% of total profits are donated to the organizations! Each year, up to 6 organizations are featured, with every bracelet purchase making an impact, no matter the size.

LWP Instructions

Current Organizations (Bracelets That Give Back collection):

LWP Give back

Purple Elephant (“Be Strong”): A non-profit organization changing the way young people think about Alzheimer’s Disease by helping to provide in-home caregiving relief to families whose lives have been impacted while caring for a loved one with Alzheimer’s.

LWP Purple Elephant

Look Good Feel Better (“Confidence”): “a free program dedicated to helping cancer patients regain their sense of control, self-esteem and confidence.”

LWP Confidence 2

Power Play (“Girl Power”): “a nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing the lives of girls in NYC by helping them grow physically, emotionally, and academically stronger.”

LWP power play

She Should Run (“Trailblazer”): “a nonprofit organization dedicated to expanding the talent pool of future elected female leaders by inspiring women and girls to aspire towards public leadership.”

LWP She Should Run

She’s The First (“Unstoppable”): “a nonprofit organization that is dedicated to educating girls in low-income countries.”

LWP she's the first

Project Glimmer (“Wish”): a nonprofit organization that provides a little piece of hope in the form of a gift to at-risk girls and women.

Project Glimmer

My Personal Account:

In reading the several Little Words chosen by the organizations, you may have noticed I mentioned Confidence, as being one of them, which also happens to be my first LWP bracelet, sent to me by chance. Upon learning about my Confidence bracelet belonging to the Bracelets That Give Back collection, I took it as a sign, realizing that the organization it benefits is of personal meaning to me. The Confidence bracelet benefits Look Good Feel Better, “a free program dedicated to helping cancer patients regain their sense of control, self-esteem and confidence.” It was late October 1996, in the days leading to Halloween. Instead of fixating on the Halloween costume I would wear and candy I would receive and indulge in, my family huddled together as we struggled to take in the reality of my grandmother’s diagnosis. In those days, I remember first hearing the word, Leukemia, as an 8-year-old. To me, it sounded like something foreign, something unwelcome and something I definitely did not want my grandmother to have. Ever since the very early years of my life, I strove to resemble my maternal grandmother, a perfectly coiffed woman with her hair frosted, crimson lips and always in a dress and heels. No matter the situation, she was always dressed in a pristine fashion, ready to take on the day. Seeing her in a vulnerable state, laying in a hospital bed, with the chemotherapy dripping into her arm, the light and smile evaporated from her face. Then one day, my sister, Hope and I decided we would become her “impromptu makeup artists”, helping her embrace her new image, the one who was on the road to recovery. With her new, styled wig (frosted, just as she liked it!), painted nails, and light lipstick, she smiled as we gathered around her, delighting in her new look. Though my grandmother (whose birthday, coincidentally was yesterday, August 20!) passed away a few weeks following my 9th birthday, I’ll never forget the moments she, my sister and I shared, during those days by her bedside in the hospital. Therefore, knowing the very bracelet (Confidence) I received is apart of the Bracelets That Give Back collection and specifically, profiting the Look Good Feel Better organization is a gift in itself and deeply resonates with me.

The Next Blog Post: “Wear It

LWP Offerings

The final post in this three-part series (“Wear It“) will be an insider look at the numerous LWP bracelet collections, plus a few special extras! Check back to discover what my second LWP bracelet is, in addition to learning about all the vast LWP offerings!

A Wristful of Words: Wear it, Share it, Believe it

Note: This is the first blog post of a three-part series, which will continue through the week (identified as “Believe It” – Blog Post #1, “Share It” – Blog Post #2,Wear It” – Blog Post #3) Please check back for the two other posts detailing the company (Little Words Project) and my experiences with them.

Little Words Project “Believe It”Blog Post #1

Since childhood, jewelry has always stood out to me. Not only is jewelry something to adorn myself with, but it is of much personal meaning. In my early childhood years, I can recall accumulating shoeboxes and shoeboxes full of costume jewelry, filling my arms with charm bracelets, character necklaces, and beyond. More importantly, the jewelry I wear and choose has evolved through the years as a means of communication and self-expression. Some of the jewelry I own can take me back to poignant moments in my life, such as my graduation from college, my first professional job, and my sister’s wedding. Therefore, one frigid afternoon this past Winter, I unexpectedly received a special delivery in the mail which proved to impact me on levels beyond my expectations.

It was a day this past Winter season filled with much sadness and reflection. The job where I’d been employed for several months dramatically came to an abrupt end. With that being said, I was left feeling at a loss, contemplating and wondering where my life path would take me. Lacking confidence and courage at that moment, I heard a knock at the door and reluctantly made my way to open it. A small brown box sat outside my doorstep, with my name imprinted on the front. Unsure as to what it was, given I was not expecting a delivery, I carefully opened it and revealed a surprise gift from one of my favorite cosmetic companies, IT Cosmetics and another small box with a beautiful, sparkling bracelet, which read: Confidence in block letters. A couple weeks prior, I’d entered a contest, not anticipating a win, and hadn’t received a winner notification. Therefore, that afternoon, the delivery came as a surprise, a much-needed and appreciated gift at that moment, when life felt particularly difficult and near impossible to navigate. Though I was excited to have won a small jar of an IT Cosmetics cream, I was more intrigued by the bracelet and interpreted it as a sign. For me, confidence has always been a trait to aspire to. So often, I criticize and chastise myself for everything I believe I’m not and cannot do, rather than celebrating and owning all I can do. Seeing the word confidence on a bracelet with a band of sparkling crystals was all the sign I needed to know that maybe life truly was going to be okay. Perhaps this was merely a stumble in the road or my path to where I truly should be and that really, all I needed to move forward was this very word, now covering my wrist – Confidence.

LWP Confidence

A small gold medallion dangled from the bracelet with a name imprinted on one side and a code on the other. Curious as to what it read and eager to learn of the company behind this intriguing bracelet, I closely examined the medallion and read – Little Words Project. Immediately, I headed to my phone to research the company and was enthralled with all I read. From that moment on, I knew Little Words Project was both a company and initiative I’d wholeheartedly support and come to be quite fond of.

By now, you might be wondering, what exactly is Little Words Project? Without further adieu, here is a brief synopsis of not only a jewelry company, but a movement of many calibers, uniting women of all ages and beyond:

Little Words Project Symbol

Website Information: The official website; littlewordsproject.com provides extensive information regarding company history, product information, and host of other resources.

Little Words Project (LWP) Origin (via littlewordsproject.com): Started by Adriana Botti, the idea which later became LWP began as a project initially conjured during her high school years to provide her with positive reminders as inspiration and reassurance. As the unfortunate subject of bullying through the years since the 4th grade, Adriana realized much of the cruelty persisted even through later years as young women and adults and made the choice to join a sorority. Through joining the sorority, Adriana credits her experience of learning the meaning friendships and bonds. As a result, Little Words Project was born during Adriana’s sophomore year, as bracelets with encouraging and supportive words, such as “Be Fearless,” “Smile,” “Strength” and “Be Happy.” Seeing the bracelets immediate popularity within her sorority, upon graduating, she officially launched Little Words Project as what Ariana hopes will “inspire a culture of kindness among women young and old.”

LWP Girls

LWP Mission: As described on the official LWP website, their mission exists as a means to, “Unite women of all ages in one common goal: to be a go-to company for jewelry that’s uplifting, to be shared with yourself, your loved ones or anyone who could use some extra kindness.

LWP Bracelets: At the heart of LWP are the bracelets available in a vast array of bands, words and symbols, each with their own unique color, style, meaning and number as means of identification and tracking.

LWP Bracelets

  • When purchasing a LWP bracelet, you’ll receive much more than the Swarovski crystal-constructed bracelet with an inspirational word. Though beautiful and delicately crafted in itself, its mission and culture only adds to its beauty.
  • Upon becoming a LWP bracelet-owner, you’ll enter the official Little Words family and as the LWP website states, “Being a member of this community connects you to women of all ages who have already engaged with our movement and have found comfort in our mission.”

LWP Project Info

LWP Buying and Selection Process: Intrigued yet? Here is a step-by-step process of how exactly making a Little Words Project purchase works:

LWP Pick   LWP Register             LWP Pass

  • Choose from one of the many inspiring words, bands and colors available via the official LWP website (littlewordsproject.com) or one of the retailers supplying the bracelets as listed on the website.
  • Upon purchasing a LWP bracelet, be sure to venture over to the “Register Your Little Word” section on the LWP website or app and register the unique number found on your gold tag (attached to the bracelet)
  • Wear your bracelet for as long as you want.
  • Upon meeting someone who might need the word on your bracelet, pass it on and advise her to register the bracelet for herself.

Follow along your bracelet’s journey by checking the tag’s status and witness the powerful impact your word (and purchase!) can make.

Social Media: As a company and initiative, LWP is extremely active and communicative on their various social media accounts and prides itself in being open and interactive with their followers and customers (i.e. Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr, and Instagram):

  • Facebook = @littlewordsproject
  • Twitter = @littlewordsproj
  • Pinterest = @littlewordsp
  • Tumblr = littlewordsproject.tumblr.com
  • Instagram = @littlewordsproject

Official App: LWP even has their own app available for download in the App store with loads of information, the ability to register your LWP bracelet, interact with other Little Words owners, sales, news and much, much more! When downloading the app, you’ll receive not only pertinent information but also will become a member of the LWP community.

My Personal Reaction: Learning more and more about LWP as a company that very day upon receiving my first LWP bracelet, I knew they’d secured me as not only a customer, but as a true believer in their goals and initiatives. As someone who has personally battled through my own issues with self-esteem, harsh criticisms and poor body image, learning of a company like LWP who strives to support, encourage and advocate for women, is comforting and reassuring to me. To be able to look down on my arm and physically see an encouraging or supportive word reminding me of my strength, courage and capabilities, is a gift to me in more ways than one:

Little Things Mean the Most

Second Blog Post (“Share It”): With this being said, it leads to me the topic of my second blog post. Later this week, join me for an insider look at how Little Words Project is truly giving back to women and society in more ways than one.

In this next post, learn more about the reasons why LWP resonates so deeply within me. Without disclosing the heart of this next post, prepare to be overcome with emotion when discovering a purchase of a LWP bracelet not only affords you with a beautiful piece of custom jewelry, but a means to grow and support organizations and people in need (“Little Words that Give Back“)

LWP Inspiration

Courageous in Words

Recently, I had the unfortunate experience of being on the receiving end of some mistreatment when it comes to being heard and recognized. Respect is not something I take lightly, nor do I think it should be withheld from those who are deserving. Though, for me, it is often a challenge to not take the mistreatment and turn it inward, judging and chastising myself for whatever I “did or didn’t do” in my mind. Soon enough, I’ve created a situation that may or may not be the truth or the reality of what occurred. During this times, as I did on this recent, particular occasion, I remind myself that the ways other people treat us is not a reflection upon us, but often a reflection upon them. When we speak up during these times, we advocate not only for ourselves, but for others; others who may be too afraid to speak, too afraid to acknowledge their hurt, or pain. During these trying times, I remind myself of this – speak the truth, even if your voice shakes.

With that being said, in light of all the controversies and challenging topics being discussed and argued about in the public forum, I thought it might be the opportune time to share some of the recent quotes I’ve stumbled upon via social media. As I previously mentioned in some of my earlier posts, these quotes are often from SimpleReminders.com, and now, the inspirational jewelry company I’ve come to love and admire – Alex and Ani. Of course, not all the quotes are from these two sources, but many are:

Stand up quote 2

“Whatever your beliefs, wherever you stand, you don’t have to be alone.”

“If you don’t make peace with your past, it will keep showing up in your present.”

“While your past may influence your future, it does not dictate it. Every day is a new beginning.”

“You will never be free until you free yourself from the prison of your own false thoughts.”

“I never lose, either I win or I learn.”

“The sooner you stop looking for something, the sooner it will find you.”

“Be with someone who makes you laugh even when you don’t want to smile.”

“If you don’t say what you’re thinking, no one will ever hear you.”

“Sleep doesn’t help if it’s your soul that’s tired.”

“Appreciate hard times. Someday they’ll just be another chapter in your success story.”

“Your story can help save someone’s life. Your silence contributes to someone’s struggle. Speak so we can all be free. Love so we can all be liberated. The moment is now. We need you.”

“It’s better to walk alone then with a crowd going in the wrong direction.”

Stand up quote

 

Nostalgia in Melody

Good Morning! I hope you’ve been having a pleasant weekend, thus far, wherever you might be reading from. Over the past several days, I contemplated whether or not I should write a post regarding a movie I recently discovered and saw and after having listened to numerous songs from the soundtrack, I figured I’d be foolish not to share about it.

With that being said, several evenings ago, I was mindlessly perusing through the movie section on Netflix when a title captured my attention: Begin Again. It is a movie from 2014, starring Keira Knightley, one of my favorite actresses, Mark Ruffalo (also a favorite actor of mine), in addition to one of my favorite musicians, Adam Levine. After seeing the title, I recalled when it first arrived in theaters three years ago. I’d been interested in seeing it, given the cast, as well as the music in the film, but never got around to it. I’d forgotten about it once it arrived on DVD, but when I saw it appear on Netflix, I decided to take the leap and see what it was all about. If I remember correctly, I don’t believe the reviews of the film were all that positive, though from what I’ve often found, a lot of reviews often don’t end up matching my opinion and perspectives. We all have different tastes and experiences which color our perspectives and ultimately our thoughts on films.

Begin Again                     Begin Again photo

The film started off rather slow, if I’m being completely frank. It was about a half hour into it, when I had to make the decision of whether or not to let it run for slightly longer, or switch it off. I opted to continue and looking back, I’m so very grateful I persisted and gave it a chance. To this very moment, I am STILL thinking about and listening to the music from the film. In particular, one song entitled, “Lost Stars,” truly stood out to me, not only for the melody, but for the words, the words that are as meaningful as they are true, filled with poetic beauty and similes. What’s even more appealing and interesting about it is that both Adam Levine and Keira Knightley recorded their own versions of it – both of which are beautiful in their own right and it’s refreshing to have the opportunity and ability to hear it sung by both a male and female voice, given their differences in tone. The passion in the song is one that is incomparable to many songs I’ve heard today.

Begin Again movie 2

Hearing “Lost Stars” in the movie led me back to a time in my teens, a time when I often sat holed up in my room, with my first-ever laptop in my bed, or sitting on the floor with the CD player listening to many of the same songs over and over again. Hearing those songs comforted me, inspired me and often touched sentiments in me I couldn’t place into words back then. Often times as an adult, I forget how powerful music can be, not only for its melody, but for it’s words. It’s easy for me to become easily distracted by the stresses and worries within my life, not realizing the ability of music to calm and soothe me, if I allow it to. Whether it is singing along, or simply listening, music has a way of leading me back to a place where I can truly believe anything is possible through effort, desire and drive.

Celebrity Sightings In New York City - July 3, 2012

If you get a chance, listen to “Lost Stars” by Adam Levine and/or Keira Knightley from Begin Again, the movie. Or, take an 1hr 45 minutes (roughly) to take in the film, itself. Perhaps it will inspire you as much as it did for me.

Music Quotes

Paw Prints on My Heart

I’ve never known romantic love. I’ve never felt that deep connection or pull propelling me towards a man.. yet. I’m not a mom and have never experienced what it might be like to mother a child.. yet. One feeling I do know, quite fondly for that matter, is the love between a dog and it’s owner. Since days before turning 14-years-old, I’ve been able to proudly identify myself as a dog owner, or “dog Mom,” more appropriately. I’ve known what it is like to care for another being so profoundly. To be sitting at school or work, wondering what he’s doing, thinking or feeling and if it’s he’s okay. I’ve known what it is like to worry for countless hours as he was rushed into emergency exploratory surgery after a grave, life-threatening surgical error on part of a veterinarian. I’ve known what it is like for my entire family to gather together during this moments as we anxious and nervously awaited word from the veterinarians regarding his status.

Oliver in his shirt.png                       Oliver smiling 2

Throughout my entire adolescence and adult life, Oliver, my 15-year-old Bichon Frise has taught me more than most people probably could. He’s taught and shown me the meaning of resilience and strength, even when he’s in pain. He’s stayed by me because he knew I needed him and still do. He’s been my one constant in my life – my only consistent co-worker, sitting beside me through the pain, the happiness, the turmoil, the challenging moments, only separated for brief periods of time throughout the course of his life.

Paw Prints

He fills the house with energy and light, even when he’s fast asleep in his bed, I can still feel his presence, clearly coloring my life and being my constant companion. When I reflect on his life and all the moments we’ve shared together, I only smile, as I remember him as a puppy, laying on the grass with me as a young teen, as we helped put together a swinging outdoor chair in our former house. He’s been through more than many dogs probably have their lifetime and yet, he epitomizes strength and courage. He looks to me with his eyes filled with emotion, almost telling me he is holding on, still filled with much life inside of him. How I hope he knows each and everyday, I’ll always fight for him, always stand up for him, because he’s always done so for me, looking to me for guidance and direction. Him and I have never given up on each other, holding on through love and courage.

Animal Eyes

I’ve come to know through Oliver that often times, the best cure and treatment for most anything is love and companionship – two remedies that are never too costly for anyone, because they are priceless. The greatest gift I’ve ever been given is Oliver, it is because of him, I know I’m capable of loving another.

Dogs Feel