Thursday, August 18, 2011

Birthday Reflections....

My kids made me this fabulous chocolate pie for my birthday on Tuesday. It's one of the best desserts I've ever eaten (and I've tried a lot of desserts in my lifetime...)
It was low calorie and low fat (not), and they found the recipe in a Southern Living Cook Book (which, as you know, automatically disqualifies it for being low calorie OR low fat.) We went to dinner at Outback Steakhouse. I had the tilapia. Because, frankly, I'm not there for the steak. I'm there for the Bloomin' Onion and baked sweet potato with honey butter and cinnamon. (I also have it under good authority that in the REAL outback, they do not eat Bloomin' Onions....)

I spent the day relaxing and reflecting. I have been reading a book called Creating Your Best Life, about setting life goals. When you get to be my age (I have not yet mentally recovered from turning 40, and 50 seems to be approaching with unbelievable and alarming speed), life goals and priorities seem to become more and more important. Over the last few years, my life seems to have been lacking balance. Which is funny, because as my kids become older and more self-sufficient (they are almost 21 and 16 1/2), you would think that I'd have more free time. Not so. I have become busier and busier with work. Which is good, because I really like what I do and I am so glad that I get to do it. But I can tend to have tunnel vision, and as I spend more time working, other things tend to fall to the wayside.

Over the last several months, I have tried to make more of an effort to do stuff just for fun, instead of locking myself up in my office and studio all the time. There have been more trips to the beach and to the flea market and craft shows. It's good because being in a creative field, I think that your work should be an overflow of your personal life and passions. And when you let the stuff that you love to do for fun & that fills up your soul get pushed out of the way, not only does life become dull and boring, but so does your work. I am still striving for balance, it is an everyday challenge.

So anyhow, writing down your life goals is really exciting. I have found that it fills me with hope and anticipation. You are supposed to write down 100 life goals- I got to about 70 and I can't imagine coming up with more. But over the next days and weeks, I probably will. Some of my goals are really simple and can be done in a day or two. For example, even though I'm a pretty good cook, I've never been able to make a really great steak- so that is one of my goals to accomplish soon. I would also like to take a  ballroom dance class (which is a little harder, because it will involve convincing my husband to come along!) I have a lot of personal and family goals and hopes and wishes. And of course, work and career related goals- again, some will take a little bit of time, and some will probably take years.

I know I said that writing all of my goals fills me with hope. But there is just a little part of me that wonders if I still have time for it all. In order to keep myself from feeling overwhelmed with what I have left "to do" with my life, I decided to write down some of the goals that I have already accomplished in my 40+ years: Married for 22 years. Raised 2 GREAT kids. Published a book. Designed fabric. Live in a house that I love. Writing this list made me extremely grateful for the life that I have lived until now. And it helps me keep perspective, because when I get down and discouraged, I can look at my list and see that there is always something to be thankful for.

I recommend the above mentioned book, and also there is a website called SuperViva, where you can make your own "bucket list" (list of things you want to do before you "kick the bucket") and see other people's lists for inspiration. C'mon- try it.....


  1. Wonderful post! We seem to share a birthday, though I've already crossed the 50 mark. I guess as we get older we get more introspective about birthdays and look deeper at our lives, don't we?

    I definitely agree - always something to be thankful for (and to look forward to!).

  2. Happy Birthday Jacquelynne! It was my hubbys birthday on Tuesday as well :-)

  3. Happy Birthday. Yummy cake !
    A good marriage, and great kids, and a job that you love. Seems like you have accomplished the most important of lifes goals.
    I like to set small goals that I can easily accomplish-brings a feeling of success. The larger goals are on-going, easier to "chunk" them in to smaller parts, you can enjoy every step of the prosess/progress. Life is lived one day at a time. Enjoy today.

  4. Just wanted to let you know that I found a copy of your book in a quilt store in Springfield Missouri. Hope that was an item on your bucket list.

    Hope you had a great birthday.

  5. So glad you had such a great birthday.
    100 goals. that seems like a lot but I guess as you start writing things come to your mind.
    You have accomplished some great goals so far.
    Keep up the good work.

  6. Happy Birthday! I think if I can come close to some of the things in Prov. 31, just close, mind you. Not making the mark. I'll be happy.
    I've been so blessed in my life, it makes my sorrows look small indeed. Thanks for a wonderful post!

  7. just came across this pie picture on you have a recipe?!



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