Sunday, November 30, 2014


Today I slept in and by some magical means, my schedule got cleared for the day. I am thankful that things fell through and that I got to spend the afternoon doing that "R" word. You know, relaxing! Movies on the couch, dinner "in" and reading in bed. Thank you, Universe for unwinding just as you should to end my November on a great note!

Saturday, November 29, 2014


Awesome sushi dinner.
Great date night.
Free drinks.
Perfect weather.
Thankful me.

Friday, November 28, 2014


Today I organized a crew of 19 friends and loved ones to volunteer at Feed My Starving Children. We packed dry goods that will be sent overseas to feed people in need. It was a great way to avoid the hustle and bustle of Black Friday, and give back to others. I am so thankful that I can help out in this capacity, and more so, that I helped give other people the opportunity to spend the day doing something so great! 

Thursday, November 27, 2014


Happy Thanksgiving! 
Today I give special thanks for new traditions, new 
people to cook for and most of all, love.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014


Tonight I am thankful for...

The grocery store having every last minute holiday fixin' that I needed - no dented can sales for this girl! And, no crazy lines to stand in, either! Woo-whooooooo!

Tuesday, November 25, 2014


Sometimes coffee talk and lent ears are the best things to be thankful for!

Monday, November 24, 2014


Today I am a butterfly. 
My boss told me so.
I'm ready to start teaching my own classes!

Sunday, November 23, 2014


Making a house feel a little more like home with added Christmas decorations and surprising the one you love? Yep, I did it, and I'm thankful for it! 

Saturday, November 22, 2014


Today found me most thankful for a long overdue girls night out! 
Thanks, Fireball!

Friday, November 21, 2014


Date night. 
Went smoothly. 
What else can I ask, or be thankful for?

Thursday, November 20, 2014


A simple text stating that you're appreciated goes a long way, and is what I am thankful for today. Good texts, followed up by even better conversations made for an awesome day and night. Awwww....

Wednesday, November 19, 2014


It's the last day of Fun Foundations class (for the month) which means I get to have some free time. All to myself. Now, the only question is, what am I going to do with myself and all this free time? Hmm...

Tuesday, November 18, 2014


Today I'm thankful for flexibility from others. I'm not so thankful for the cold weather that made me change plans, but let's just focus on that flexibility thing!

Monday, November 17, 2014


While I'm grateful for the compliments I received today on my hair, my teaching ability, and about me in general and how awesome I am (thanks Ann, Brenda and KK!) I must say the highlight I'm most thankful for today was coming home to a pre-warmed, electric blanket just for me - thanks babe! 

Sunday, November 16, 2014


Ahh Sunday, you've come at last. Thank you for your quietness, and time afforded for personal pampering (like manicures and reading) and naps.

Saturday, November 15, 2014


I'm really thankful today that Clorox cleanser with bleach gets paint off of white chairs. Yikes!

Friday, November 14, 2014


Dinner around the table tonight; a rare occasion to be thankful for.
And I'm even more thankful my dinner was a success.

Thursday, November 13, 2014


Sometimes there aren't enough hours in the day to get everything done. Ok, there are never enough hours in my day to accomplish everything I want to do! Thankfully, I have people in my life that understand my schedule and the shortcomings of my time available to them. The fact is, even though I'm usually aware when others get frustrated, I get frustrated that I can't meet my day's desires, too. While coming up short in any given situation is frustrating what I'm thankful for is that I have people in my life that want to share my time with me. I won't complain of the demands, but relish in the rewards. Happy Thursday.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014


Today I'm thankful for little things...

Morning workouts
Custom breakfasts and coffee
Texts that answer my questions before I ask
Scheduling freedom
My boss's absence (so I can learn new things)
Help from others
Silly conversations
Silly silences filled with smiles and cuddles
Late night trips to the grocery store

Tuesday, November 11, 2014


Tonight 3 out of 5 students passed their CGC test with my boss as their evaluator. Compared to her statement that "8 out of 9 dogs fail...", I think we did pretty awesome as trainers! We, my co-teacher/trainer and I, surpassed the 10% pass rate and prepared our students well! It's great to see all of their, and our, hard work pay off. I'm so thankful for students who take direction and feedback, work hard, and put in the time needed to be successful with their dogs! Congratulations kiddos!

Monday, November 10, 2014


Being reminded to replace the word, "have" with "get" was probably the best thing I read all day. Thank you universe for sending me that message! Too often I get a case of the "haves" and I don't enjoy them at all. I tend to resent them and maybe even at times, hate them. So, just what are the "haves"? 

I begrudgingly get up on Mondays and think in my head of all the things I have to do. I have to get up. I have to go to the gym. I have to go to work. I have to go to class. I have to plan.

But what if you took the time to be grateful for the things you "have" to do? What if you replaced your "have" with "get"? That simple, little act made a huge difference for me. When using the word "get" instead of "have", I no longer felt like my day was a chore, versus a choice and privilege. My attitude shifted, and I was reminded to be grateful for all the little things that I get to do. Sure, one might not be overly joyed at the thought of going to work on a Monday, but the fact is I get to. And so many people don't. The gym? Yep, I'm happy I get to go there, too! Especially when I think of people in ill-health who can't. The fact is, I'm lucky that I get to do a lot of things on this planet, and for that I am thankful.

Go ahead, give it a try. Change up your vocabulary and inner thoughts and see if it makes a difference. I'm not saying you have to. I'm just saying you get to! 

Sunday, November 9, 2014


I have an awesome belly dance teacher. 
That is all!

Saturday, November 8, 2014


If a tree falls in the woods, and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound? I don't know the answer to that question, but I can tell you if I personally fall in the woods you hear it!  Today I headed out for what should have been an easy hike with the significant other, and ended up falling within the first five minutes of the course. I tripped (over what, I don't know!) and crashed pretty hard on my shin. It sucked. It was (and still is) painful. And it was slightly embarrassing! Thank goodness it wasn't a first date because when asked by the man if I was okay, my response was a sheepish, "I'm just falling for ya babe." comment. (Not sure there would have been a second date with that kind of cheese factor going on!)

And as if getting my pants all muddy and making a general mess of myself, paired with swelling and hideous leg bruising in a one time instance wasn't bad enough, I continued to stumble the rest of the evening! Everywhere! If anyone ever had a case of the "whoopsies", it was definitely me! So yeah - what is there to be thankful for in hurting myself? I'll tell ya.

Of course I'm thankful the fall was no worse than what it was. I got dirty and I'm hurt but my leg will eventually return to the proper color (some day), and hey - my jeans were salvageable! Being out in nature on what was probably one of the last "nice" Fall days was pretty amazing too. But most of all, I'm thankful for having someone genuinely care about me and check in on me when I fall and do clumsy stuff; and still love me in spite of it all. Awwwwwe. 

Friday, November 7, 2014


I love Fridays. They signify the end of the work week, and usually are the kick-offs for good things to come. This Friday was no different, and for that I am happy and thankful!

Tonight I found myself sitting across the dinner table from a girlfriend debating the differences between capturing, shaping, and luring dog behaviors. Ok, I'll add the disclaimer now that the only people who will probably appreciate this post are fellow dog trainers. But it was an awesome conversation! 

We were both "raised" on clicker training and positive reinforcement, and are currently branching out into other avenues of +R training and education. It's amazing to come back to each other now after months have passed, and see how our perspectives have changed. Mainly, we could both appreciate how our definitions of capturing and shaping have changed, which was the biggest debate of the night! Of course, the best thing that came from this conversation was education, new technique ideas, and getting to catch up with a friend! And yeah, dinner wasn't half bad either - I highly recommend Korean BBQ. Yum!

Thursday, November 6, 2014


Tonight I saw the movie, "Fury". It was, simply stated, awe-inspiring. Between the special effects, camera work with inside (the tank) point of views, and general story-line I was on the edge of my seat the entire time. Of course, it helps to have awesome company (thanks Eric!) who can give you the true historical background on the war, machinery and culture of the time; making the movie-going experience all the more rich. I could go on about the movie, but you will just have to go see it for yourself!

So, why am I only half blogging about a movie in this post? Because the movie serves as a reminder that I am thankful to all those who have served, and continue to serve, in our armed forces to keep this country free. Having just finished watching the mini-series, "The Pacific" (pretty accurate portrayal of WWII) at home, and now having viewed Fury, it really starts to add up for me just how many lives were lost for the sake of my freedom. I can't begin to imagine the sacrifices both physically and mentally that were paid to keep me free. At times I gripe about America and the politics that I don't agree with, but I don't know anywhere greater to live other than the good ol' U.S. of A. And for those who have fought to protect it and keep it great, I am grateful.

With Veterans Day around the corner, we are reminded to take our thanks out of the moth-balls and pay our respects to soldiers both past and present, but it should be more than a once-a-year occurrence. Sadly, for most, it isn't. There are tons of ways to pay it forward and show some gratitude to those who deserve it most without waiting for a holiday. Below are links to some organizations that I volunteer with and donate to, so go ahead and give them a click. Go ahead and say thank you. 

Wednesday, November 5, 2014


Because a dog who does not fit in a box, but attempts to sit in a box, but smashes the box, is funny.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014


When I think about what I am thankful for today, I gratefully find more than a few things to blog about. I am so grateful for friends who always listen, friends who randomly reach out at the right times as if they just know that even a simple text will make my day better - but who doesn't have great friends or people in their lives to be thankful for? So when I dig deeper and think about all the little things in my days that add up to really big moments of happiness, I found that I am thankful for...

Unsolicited apologies
Presents (come on, I'm guessing that's a given for anyone!)
Quiet conversations at the end of the day
Pending date nights
Lack of aches and pains
New classes
Having the heat turned up for me by my significant other (without asking) when I'm cold
"Ah-ha" moments when everything becomes clear

And while this may sound beyond my normal level of "mush", I'm thankful to have things to be thankful for! When's the last time you really were grateful for all the things you have to be thankful for?

Monday, November 3, 2014


For the other half of Team Awesome with a Side of Crazy, thank you for always lending a listening ear and desk-side chats, constructive feedback, logic, random ballet dances, profound condiment and cheese conversations, movie quotes and adding fun to my life! I am thankful for you this month, and always. You make life (and work) easier!

Sunday, November 2, 2014


Today I met with my boss, Brenda, and fellow dog trainer teammates. After 4 months of being with a new company, I am finally starting to feel "at home" (logo-printed clothing helps!). It was great discussing ideas about how to better the business in general, but to also dig deeper and discuss what we as individuals liked about training and what we want to do going forward. 

Three hours and lots of dog talk later, one of the best things to come out of today's meetup was me being given the opportunity to create and design my own class and curriculum! I can't put into words, having come from a limited retail training environment, how awesome that is! Knowing that I have a supportive boss (despite being spread way too thin way too often) who supports opportunities for exploration and growth is amazing, and for that I am thankful! 

The freedom to branch out and try new things along with continual positive post-class feedback makes me a better employee, and quite frankly, a better person. How easy it must (or should) be to have higher expectations for one's employees knowing that, "The Law of Expectations means that whatever you think of your employees, you’re right – and their performance will rise or fall to your level of expectation to prove the point." Oh, if only every manager would take that statement to heart - and because I know not every manager does I find myself truly appreciative of my boss. Thanks Brenda! 

Saturday, November 1, 2014


For some the month of November may bring about strategy planning for a successful Black Friday shopping trip or an annual review of favorite holiday recipes. For others (and hopefully most of you!) November brings about the sentiment of thankfulness and gratitude. While I am immune to the ads of over consumption of unneeded products and tend to wing it on recipes, I do find myself seduced by November as a time of reflection and gratefulness. With that said, I dedicate the next 30 days and posts to what I am thankful for whether they be people, places or things, or even just a moment in time.

Recently my friend Judith sent me, as well as a few others, a link to this articleFirst off, I was totally excited to see my friend's return address in my inbox, and then even more excited and flattered that she considers me a "writer" - but I digress. The short but poignant article focuses on a study that shows, "...the act of writing itself leads to strong physical and mental health benefits, like long-term improvements in mood, stress levels and depressive symptoms." I'd have to agree! 

As I continued to read, I reflected upon my own feelings about my writings. I'm not a professional, and sometimes I don't think what I have to write about is important enough to post, but according to the article, "You don't have to be a serious novelist or constantly reflecting on your life's most traumatic moments to get these great benefits. Even blogging or journaling is enough to see results. One study found that blogging might trigger dopamine release, similar to the effect from running or listening to music." Yep, I find myself in agreement again! The content of my blogging, while important to me, might not appeal to the masses, and I'm ok with that. The fact is, I enjoy it, and hey, science says it's good for me! 

So if something like blogging feels great and is good for me, why do I ever stop (have you seen my lapses in posts)? Why does anyone stop anything? Life happens. You get tired. You make excuses. And sometimes, well...sometimes we just need a little push to get our happy habits back on track.

With that said, thank you Judith for being my "push"! While I'm sure your intention was to simply share an article, the fact is you did more than that. The article reminds me of the benefits of writing, which I've experienced first hand, and prompts me to get back to blogging. Blogging makes me happy - thanks Judith for making a difference!