Mornings in the hills

I have had a few weeks, where almost every day, I have made time to hike and run in the hills near our home. I feel grateful every morning I get to enjoy nature in the early hours.  I have seen the sun rise, seen the fog and rain in the hills, watched the birds and animals awaken to the day, and have gotten many great workouts.  I feel more peace as I get away from the cars and homes and walk along the pathways up there.  It clears my head, lifts my spirits, and brings me joy.  Truly this is one of my happy places, where I unite with my thoughts and my greatest dreams.

Here are a few pictures of this beloved place.

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The end of a busy week

Friday came, and so did the end of the book fair. We celebrated the end by packing up the fair, counting the money and checks, and then going to lunch to talk about the fair and life. I so appreciate the two ladies who ran the fair with me. They are top-notch and so helpful, kind, funny, and just plain marvelous.

I had a few minutes of down time before I went back to a board meeting for Threestory Studio with Erik and his parents. The business is heading in a great direction and is more satisfying than ever to Erik. There were a few things to do at the office. Then home finally for relaxation. We relaxed and ate some pizza and molten chocolate cake and watched some shows. I keep falling asleep at the computer, so it must be time to head to bed and regroup for the rest of this school year. It is so close, and full of so many end-of-the-year events and awards that I just hope I can make it to everything! Brandon and Erik get to have some father/son bonding at a ward campout with the fathers and sons in the ward overnight. It is great to work together, and then good to have moments alone to process and take it all in.

I feel blessed to put on events with wonderful people at school. I feel blessed to help Erik with his work. I feel blessed to be a mother to my wonderful children. I feel blessed for a quiet home to rest and read in. I feel blessed to have this weekend ahead for rest and work, family and friends.

Family

IMG_1833Robin gave a family night lesson on Family tonight from For the Strength of Youth. She wrote out the importance of the family in swirly letters. She did a great job. Nothing is more important than family. Our best efforts should be in the home.

 

Habit and Home

I seem to read mostly non-fiction these days. I finished two books last night and this morning.

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In The Power of Habit I learned about how much of what we do day to day is a complex set of habits. If we have habits we want to break, we can overwrite the old habit and create new habits. It takes effort and creating different responses to daily cues. One habit we have been trying to break around here is some of the negative ways we interact — nagging, criticizing, belittling, general disrespect. We have been trying to form new habits in how we talk to each other. I have seen a lot of progress in trying to turn around what we say from the more negative approach to the positive. We are much happier as we have consciously interacted more kindly and respectfully.

Happier at Home is a follow-up book to The Happiness Project. The author contemplates how the happiness she experiences centers around her home life. She outlines nine areas such as time, parenthood, neighborhood, now, and marriage as areas to make specific goals so that home is a happier place. I enjoy the practical nature of her discoveries about happiness.

Here are a couple other books I have started and are on my nightstand. Again, they are non-fiction. Maybe someone has a good fiction book to recommend to me.

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Happy reading!