Well I guess it’s time for me to share Happy First’s again! For those of you that are new to my email list or blog, I used to send a Happy First message on the first of every month (and also some other “first” days). It was something I have said for years to family and friends, for example, Happy December 1st! I founded Happy First in 2007 to celebrate new beginnings (my egg logo has many meanings- new beginnings, breaking out of your shell, whatever it represents to you!). Some of you may know I am a Hodgkin’s Lymphoma Survivor– I shared my story years ago on my blog and through that blog post I have met some wonderful survivors and connections were made between people. Feel free to share it with anyone that may need an uplift.
Thank you all for your emails and comments after I posted my grief story. I was overwhelmed by the responses-didn’t expect the personal stories and words of encouragement some of you have sent me. And I want to answer each one of you back personally, it is just taking me a while! But thank you.
One of the first emails I received really struck me and is the reason you are getting this Happy First Day of Winter picture today-this is from Ashley, someone I don’t even know-she made me realize I must get out there and share happiness, even if on some days it is really hard-
“I am so very sorry for your loss. I know that there are no words that can be said to make things better, I wish there were. I just want you to know that I somehow stumbled upon Happy First during a particularly sad and low time in my life, and your words and ecards always brought light and happiness into my life. I would always look forward to your emails on the first of the month and would send your cards to family and friends. Thank you for that. I’m sure I’m not the only person you have never met who’s life you made better. Just wanted you to know 🙂 sending lots of love and light your way. ”
And another response I wanted to share is from a dear friend, Cyndy, who lost her son to suicide 7 years ago. I got permission from her to share this, hoping it will help others. She truly uplifts and inspires me.
“Thank you for sharing your journey of using art to heal. I do the same and know that it can be very therapeutic to “lose yourself” in creativity. I’m glad to hear that you are learning to get through the days of grief. The “why?” questions are so difficult and I’ve realized that it is the “how?” questions that move us forward. How do I live this day through the pain?, How do I move forward from this day?, or How do I help others by what I have been through? “Why” questions take us back to a place that cannot be changed, but “How” questions take us to wherever God is leading for the future. I have to remind myself of this on a regular basis.”
Today I just felt the need to share and uplift-the Holidays can be a really tough time for a lot of people.
Please pass this post on to those who may need it and feel free to comment.
Oh and now some fun stuff-you can get my snowman on notecards and notepads. Right now they are available on my Etsy shop, and eventually will be on my site too! And the Happy Flowers Coloring Book is available both on Amazon and Etsy.
Here’s some fun pics! Sorry about the placement, having some technical difficulties! Anyway, Happy First!
Happy September 1st my friends! I hope everyone is enjoying Labor Day Weekend! I love to celebrate a new month and a new season, yay!
Lots of exciting things coming this month and some great guest posts coming since this is both National Blood Cancer Awareness Month and National Yoga Month! What a great combination when you think about it, wish I had known about Yoga when I was going through treatment 18 years ago.
Anyway, more to come, follow us via Bloglovin or RSS feed to get our posts!
(click on the ecard to share with others!)
Happy April 1st! I can’t believe it is April already but so excited. I just love Spring! And we are about to get our April showers tonight, so I quickly did some planting. I planted arugula, spinach, watercress, carrots and 2 kinds of lettuce. Last night I looked at Pinterest to get some ideas, then got overwhelmed and just planted! Sometimes I want to do things perfectly and obsess instead of just doing it. Usually I just end up charging ahead. So I threw some seeds in some rows and hope they grow ok! I usually don’t plant from seed-I usually buy little plants at the herb festivals in April. So I am branching out (pun) a little and trying some new things. I do want to have a huge vegetable garden soon. We have enough room here out on our acreage, but it will take some planning-would like to do raised beds and then we will have to fence everything (we have deer, raccoons, possums, snakes, you name it) and then also figure out the irrigation. So maybe it will be in place by next spring. My sister in law is a Master Gardener, so I will enlist her help. Here’s what I threw out there today!
Oh my gosh, I am on an ADD rampage now, haven’t blogged in a while-hope you can follow this! I am always thinking of ideas to write about but have gotten really bogged down with life lately. I am truly smushed in the sandwich generation right now. Just call me peanut butter. I have one in college and one in high school-and even thought they are not little any more, you still have challenges, just different from when they were little. And then my mom is in Dallas (4 hours away) in very poor health and so I am hopping in the car once more in the morning to help my sister with her.
Luckily I have an online business so I will just take my ideas and technology with me. So excited about some new things coming up for Spring with Happy First. Can’t wait to tell ya’ll!
I just want to say, I truly don’t know how people get bored in life. There are not enough hours in the day for me. I think I got gypped on the hours somewhere! There is so much I want to learn and do. I know I sound like a PollyAnna but I just love life and I love learning. And I want to encourage others to find what makes them happy and just do it.
One of my latest fun things I am doing-I really want to get good at graphic design. Some of you know my story, I started out in fashion design in college then switched to accounting because I was good with numbers and thought I would find a job more easily in accounting. Well, I did it, got my CPA and a good job but I didn’t like accounting all that much! So finally I am pursuing my passion of design and fashion, making friends, spreading happiness. I want you to know that you are never too old to pursue something new! I have even thought about going back to college (while still running my business) and getting a graphic design degree. But I really don’t need all those unneccessary classes and taking all that time. So I decided to learn on my own. Last year I took some short classes at our local community college and that was great and all, but I wanted more. So I just signed up with Lynda.com – it is so great, they have videos on everything, from mircrosoft excel to photoshop to photography to how to learn instagram to time management! So I thought I would share. I am really enjoying it. I just want to encourage you all to pursue what you love and find different sources to do this.
Oh and this is so cool, I have been thinking about writing about this for days and then just ran across this story today from a great blog-YogaSpy– I follow- a man running his first marathon at 89 (he is now still running at 102!)-what an incredible story-just goes to show you are never too old!
So I know this isn’t perfectly written, but I have decided I just need to write from the heart. If I wait til all conditions are perfect, it won’t get done!
Happy April 1st!
What would you like to learn or do?
Happy Valentine’s Day my friends! Click on the ecard to spread happiness & fun. 🙂
Happy January 1st my friends, and Happy 2013! As you know, I love to celebrate firsts and new beginnings! I love the start of a new year, it is so fresh and fun and full of possibilities. I view life as a big adventure and I love to experience new things.
I’m spending this week reflecting on 2012 and planning for 2013.
Yesterday on my Happy First facebook page I asked the question- Does anyone make resolutions? The first response came from a dear friend who said she doesn’t make resolutions, too much pressure and she doesn’t want to be disappointed. Someone else agreed. Wow, that is so foreign to me, I am constantly setting goals. I am so Type A, have trouble slowing down. And I look at this dear friend and wish I was more like her, so balanced and calm.
But we have to work with who we are right? And that is what makes everyone so fun and different and that is what is great about having friends and a spouse that are totally opposite of me. They keep me in balance!
So back to my Type A goal setting-ha ha. (By the way, check out my earlier blog post about setting goals) Every year for the past few years I have chosen a word to embrace for the year. It started in 2010-my word was Create, 2011 was Pursue and 2012 was Delve (delve in 2012). I encourage you all to think of a word and frame it so you can see it every day. This year I am putting it on my desk.
Before I tell you 2013’s word, let me reflect on 2012. I chose Delve. I wanted to learn new things. Well, I did learn new things, but I think my word should have been Explore for last year, because I did so many things on the surface but didn’t really delve or get good at any of them. I looked into classes at our local community college and took all of these classes last year (I dragged some friends with me too to these classes)-Adobe Illustrator, Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Indesign, a 5 week photography class (I got a digital SLR for my birthday and wanted to learn how to really use it) and a jewelry stamping class!
I learned new skills and met fun people, but this year I want to really FOCUS so that is my word for 2013. I have said that before, I am spread too thin. I want to be super business owner and super mom and super volunteer and experience everything! Well, I can’t be good at everything if I am overextended. I am really going to work on my schedule and say no more and when I am working I am focusing on work-no distractions-and when I am doing family things I am with family. I love Yoga-one of the things they are always saying is BE PRESENT-so I am going to work on being present!
Some other ideas I came up with for some good words-be LEAN in 2013-that can be like lean in being fit or lean in your business. I had New Year’s Eve dinner with cousins last night and I was asking them their word ideas and my cousin Ralph said Lucky 13 for 2013. So maybe 2013 will be your lucky year! (as you may know, I have a lucky chick tee and I wrote about Luck).
But I digress, I must FOCUS on my word FOCUS. What is your word for 2013? I love hearing everyone’s ideas! Let’s inspire each other! Happy 2013!
ps-I tend to want to make everything perfect. I could have spent hours choosing the perfect font or drawing up something to frame. Instead, I just chose to keep it simple! So it is not perfect, but it is already sitting on my desk.
Happy October 1st my friends! The months just fly by-the first always sneaks up on me! And here I am late getting this out today, but I think it happened for a reason because of the comment that just appeared on the Military Wife Strong Chick (featuring Latife) blog post. I am just blown away. I cannot believe all the strong people I have been introduced to because of having Hodgkin’s Lymphoma and founding the Happy First clothing line. Also, I wanted to refer back to My Hodgkin’s story, because I want you all to see other people’s stories and if you know someone going through it, maybe my blog post and everyone’s comments can be an encouragement.
I was going to tell you about all the cute new stuff we have (and it is! check it out) but I thought sharing other’s stories are more important today!
So be Happy to be Here and remember this is a new month to make a difference in your life and others’!
We are still looking for some more Military Strong Chicks out there to tell their story as a part of an upcoming project, so please contact me either via my blog or site or facebook with your story.
Oh, one more thing, we are now on Pinterest, please follow us!
Ok, couldn’t resist, here is one cute new thing, go check out the rest…..
Happy July 1st, my friends! Where is this summer going? We just got back from the beach at 1 am last night (or I guess that is morning!). Had a wonderful time, after Sunday it was bright and sunny after the tropical storm Debby came through.
I love vacations, gets me recharged, energized! I love to shop and check out the trends and see what is fun and new. I always get new ideas too. So last night we got home and I was so excited and started pulling out fabric out of my fabricaholic stash to get ready to create today. Went to bed around 3 am, those of you that know me know that I am NOT a night person! But I love new ideas and get so wired I cannot sleep. Can’t wait to show you what I come up with.
I am reflecting on July, how we are so blessed to live in a country where we have the freedom to do what we want to do. If we want to start a new business, we can! We can run with our ideas and share with others. I don’t take this for granted and am thankful to those who have fought for our country.
So, pursue and be happy and celebrate our country this week!
What are you thankful for and what are you pursuing?
ps-click on the ecard to share! 🙂
Happy First Day of summer! As always, click on the ecard to share. 🙂
Found some fun summer quotes-
“A single sunbeam is enough to drive away many shadows”
— St. Francis of Assisi
“Celebrate Summer – Sun drenched days and starlit nights…”
— Gooseberry Patch
“In summer, the song sings itself”
— William Carlos Williams
This one made me laugh-