Inspiration

Choosing Joy

today-i-will-choose-joy

“Joy” is one of my favorite words.

Even when life is a disappointment or a trial,

we can still have a consistent joy.

I believe that joy is that which runs deep in our spirit,

and it flows from gratitude and appreciation,

and the ability to recognize and cultivate them.

Sometimes having joy requires

making the choice to take it easy.

Breathe. Enjoy. Relish. I love that word “relish”.

By definition it means…

great appreciation of something,

or enjoyment, gusto, liking, loving, savor, zest, and taste.

I have “great appreciation of”, or relish,  those moments of pure simplicity….

like evenings, or unexpected snow days, at home

with my “treasures” (better known as my kiddos),

birds chirping after a season of cold silence,

that flash when the sun breaks through after long periods of cloudy sameness,

oh, and the first lick of chocolate cake batter from the bowl.

 

 

Perhaps the simple things are the big things in life after all.

Did you know you can teach yourself to recognize them?

Of course, that means being purposeful about it

and being aware.

Looking for those precious moments of pure gift.

Actually seeing everything around you.

 

Yes, there is a lot of ugly.

And yes, it means we can’t be numb,

and when we open ourselves it can sometimes

be the gateway to emotional pain.

But without allowing ourselves to sense and see,

we also delete from our lives the gifts of joy we are given on a daily basis.

slow-down-enjoy-life

Sometimes we have no choice because we are overwhelmed by life.

Many times we do more….we fill our lives with unnecessary busyness,

often trying to please others with agendas that aren’t in our best interest.

I’m learning what matters most to me (what a process!)…

being with my children, conserving my energy so I can be “present” with them

(and learning what “conserving my energy” means, when I used to believe I had a bottomless reserve!),

choosing carefully when to meet with people,

not sacrificing my important priorities because others want me to.

 

Wow, it’s taken a very long time to reach this place!

I used to absolutely run ragged doing all the “shoulds”.

I’m so thankful I have learned to choose (most days).

It’s funny how all the unnecessary stuff begins to fall away

and we are left with the things and

people who matter most.

The people we treasure, the acts that feed our spirits,

and the laughter that connects us and supplies endorphins to keep us going!

I wish for you, my friend, the choicethat you may relish–with JOY–your life and the people who fill it.

Just look at the joy!
Just look at the joy!

 

May you be blessed with JOY and abundance of the simple things in life!

Much love,
Passionista

 

 

 

Mimi's Messages

I’m Going Live! Check It Out!

Oh my gosh I’m so excited! Deborah St. Hilaire from Bay City is interviewing me, live, tonight on her Divalution Radio! Check it out. 7:00 p.m. (Eastern) on W4DIVAS.com.  It should be a good time. 🙂

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Also, we will meet early and collaborate about holding women’s small group meetings at her amazing studio/storefront/gathering space. This has been one of my dreams for five years. And what will I call these gatherings? Well, as Passionista At Large, they will be “Passionista Playdates”!! Comment below if you are interested in these and I’ll keep you posted. (Location is Bay city, Michigan)

It seems my words of the year “Expand” from last year and “Abundance” for this year are working for me! Sometimes it really takes just putting one foot in front of the other and doing what you know to do at the time.

 

So carry on with your bad selves, shine YOUR light, and rock 2017!

Love and BIG hugs, Passionista

Mimi's Messages

Going! Going! Gone?

You didn’t sign up for my blog to receive news about my Empowordment Cards, but because positive self image and encouraging others is my THING, these cards are a part of ME. Sooooo….

I won’t do a bazillion posts about them. BUT….

I have put a bunch of cards on 50% off sale, and I thought you might want to know.

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Some of these designs are the first ones I created TWO years ago! And while I love them–they are like my babies, after all–I need to make room for some new designs. Sixty-three cards is a lot to manage, especially when they decide to throw a party behind my back! And let’s not talk about carrying them around when I do shows and such! Ugh! Can we say weighsalot?

Believe

This is a great time to stock up on cards for the year. I mean, where can you purchase a colorful, unique, glossy, heavy-weight, Mimi-designed 5×7 greeting card for $1.50? These are works of art, people. Well, some folks think so!

I mean they are all the rage in NYC!!

 

I have cards on sale that are fitting for birthday,

 

you-are-something-else

birthday-cover

 

graduation,

 think-live-believe-big

wow-you-did-it

Valentine’s and Sweetest Day or anniversary,

You make my heart dance2

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celebrations,

the-more-you-praise-and-celebrate-life

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and just plain ol’ encouragement.

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Take a walk on the wild side and browse on over at my shop to choose the ones you want to stock up on.

NOTICE: once they are out of stock, they are gone! Unless you want to order a 10-pack and then I’d be happy to re-order you some. 🙂

Thanks for letting me pitch a sale in your inbox. 🙂

 

Click right HERE to gain entrance to the much-coveted SALE section of my Etsy shop.

Shhhhh, you are the first to get a shot at it. But tomorrow I’m tellin’ the WORLD!!

 

And thank you soooo much for being my READERS!! I can’t even tell you what it means!

Love and really big sparkly HUGs to you,

Mimi

P.S. My watermark (logo) does not appear on the front of the cards you buy. It’s just for copyright purposes that it’s on them here.

 

Mimi's Messages

Eighteen Days of Whew!

Whew, what a crazy, busy last few weeks! From November 9 to 26 I was rarely home! In that two and a half weeks I:

had four days of vendor shows, including three setup-and-takedowns

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taught reading to kindergarteners for four days,

drove to Kentucky and back (7 hours one way) to celebrate Thanksgiving with my family for two days,

and then worked again on Monday.

By Tuesday I was almost comatose! Let’s just say that this old(er) passionista was draaaaaaging her heels!

So the days I didn’t work I took naps. That’s my go-to self-care. And if I don’t take care of myself I’m no good to anyone, especially my kiddos.

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If you remember, I am the only parent of two special needs teens. So it’s a bit high-maintenance at times, but they have come sooo far! Traveling with them has gotten so much easier! I now pack about half of what I had to before. Yay! Marking off those milestones!

Good news: my sales at the vendor shows were pretty good. I’m so thankful! I sold twenty-eight (28!!!) of my calendars. So excited that the words and affirmations will be helping people all year to remember their worth, their fabulous-ness, and that they are amazing. It’s just such a rush to know I am helping people. If you would like a reminder of the calendar, (I wrote about it recently here) watch this.

 

If you’d like your own calendar of affirmations, go to my shop here.

And right now there is a 20% OFF code!

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My most favorite thing about the vendor shows was talking to the people who stopped by my booth. I met some very interesting people!

One of the common threads of our conversations was that we all need to be encouraged, lifted up, and filled with positivity. That’s one reason I love what I do! Many people talked about how happy my booth made them feel. That everything was so cheerful and colorful. And I’m glad people felt that way, because I do too! I like that people were drawn to my booth. This world needs us to be a shining light that dispels the darkness. I’m doing that!

So today I got my trees up from the basement. Does that count as Christmas decorating? Not sure how much I’ll get done this year. I so love the look of my decorations, but do not care for the work of putting it all out. Where is that Samantha of Bewitched fame when you need her? Wish I could just wiggle my nose!

Well, I hear my bed calling my name.

I hope you have a great week ahead. May all your Christmas lights stay lit!!

Big hugs and sparkles,

Mimi

 

 

Living With Gusto

You Are MORE!

 

what-we-believe-about-ourselves

It doesn’t matter what is being said about you.

It doesn’t matter what others think of you.

What matters is what you think of yourself!

And if you believe lies about yourself, then you will act on those lies instead of the truth.

 

Any words that make you seem “less than” the amazing person you were created to be is a LIE!

Those words may come from the chatter in your brain, just regurgitating things you have heard.

They may come from actual people who are small-minded and have their own agenda.

 

But whatever the source, you need to STOP listening to the derogatory lies and begin to speak truth to yourself.

Because when you believe lies, you think small about yourself.

It’s pretty hard to launch out of your comfortable, ho-hum, dream-draining life by thinking small.

You can barely rise to doing those things the world needs from you–your purpose for being here.

 

the-only-thing-that-benefits-from-thinking-small-is-your-comfort-zone

“But I don’t WANT to leave my comfort zone! It’s comfortable.”

Ummm, yeah. And it’s restricting and limiting. (Redundant, I know, going for the effect.)

And leaving your comfort zone is like jumping off the high dive.

 

But don’t you want to be the best you can be?

Don’t you want to realize amazing and wonderful things about yourself–things you never knew?

When we rocket ourselves (because that’s what it takes!) outside of our comfort zone to do those things that our heart really, really longs to do, all kinds of new worlds and information opens up to us! It could become quite an adventure–mine has!

 

And the wonderful thing is that our hearts and spirits become more fulfilled as we begin to venture out and try things our heart is leading us to do.

**Things the lies make us afraid to do.**

 

Lies like:

“I am not smart enough for that.

I could never go in front of people.

I really do not have the “look” required for that.

I don’t have the time for that.

No one needs me.

I’m not qualified.

I’m just a ________.” Oh how I hate that word!

 

The lies (excuses) are limitless.

But so are YOU!!

Limitless.

The only thing holding you back is you.

 

Stop believing lies and restricting the amazing, capable, beautiful person you are!

You CAN do this! I know, because I did.

 

Love and big sparkly hugs!

Passionista

 

I speak from experience!! Seriously!

If you would like to read more, here are some older posts on the subject.

To Dream (when I jumped off the high dive myself!)

The Lies That Bind

The Lies That Bind Magazine Article (a much longer article in more detail)

Start Anew

 

 

 

 

 

Inspiration

Be The Light (Guest Post)

6-june-it-is-your-light-that-lights-the-world

 

 

 

I was born to shine

BE THE LIGHT

Social media.

A discussion had taken place on Facebook. A political one (shocker!). And I found myself getting sucked into it.

My engagement in it was minimal, but the effect it was having on me was significant. I allowed it to suck me in, to take me to a place that felt very dark. It left me feeling confused, fearful and isolated.

As I stood there at my kitchen sink, washing up the last of the dinner dishes, I realized that I was giving power to this darkness by permitting it to invade my mind and my spirit.

And that’s when I felt the gentle voice of my Heavenly Father reminding me of the truth. The truth of His sovereignty and what He is calling me to be in this temporary world of mine.

He is calling me to be light.

So, when I was approached by my dear friend Deborah of Salvage Sister and Mister to join the challenge to be the light in the ever growing dark world and confusing world of social media, I didn’t hesitate to say yes!

***During the week of Nov 1-8, 8 bloggers will share their stories and encouragement to be the light in the darkness.***

The purpose of the ‘Be the Light Challenge’ is to encourage~

  • How to share opinions (political or not) in a Godly manner

  • How to guard our hearts and minds

  • How to deal with conflict online

  • Setting limits/boundaries (1 Corinthians 6:12)

  • Encouraging/building others up

  • Fruits of the Spirit

this huge brilliant spectacular light of mine

 

Visit her blog post for the links to other bloggers that are helping us through the darkness. I’m really glad they are doing this.

Perhaps you’d like to shine YOUR light too. Think about it.

Big hugs and sparkles and lotsa LIGHT!!

Mimi

 

Living With Gusto

Sparkle & Shine Calendar is Here!

 

 

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Hello lovelies!

Goodness this last six months has been incredibly busy. I seriously don’t know how I had time to teach full time before I retired. Of course, I’ve added three jobs since then, all of them MY businesses. And I am entirely responsible for all three. That along with raising two special needs kiddos in their teen years (and all the doctor visits involved with that) has kept me super busy.

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I will catch up on happenings later. Right now I want to show you my 2017 calendar! I’m very excited about it. Instead of using a template with the borders provided like the last two years, I created all my own borders. I also decided that instead of using my previously published cards, I would design all new ones.

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This year I focused on affirmations. For half of the months you have three “I am” statements to read every day. Thus you will hopefully integrate them into your spirit!

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For the other six months I have given written statements about you. I truly enjoyed creating this calendar. I know it will make a difference in your self-esteem and also in that of the females in your life.

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It’s a great gift for friends, daughters, granddaughters, nieces, ANY person who could use a little reminder of how amazing and capable they are–which means all of us!

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Visual reminders are the best!! And then when we say these words out loud? Oh yeah!! Way to start believing them. We can reprogram our brains to think the truth about who we are, instead of listening to the lies we tell ourselves.

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The pages are easy to write on, which is important in my book. Glossy on the picture and matt on the calendar. Perfect!
The squares marking each day are a bit over 1 1/4″ square, large enough to jot your goals or achievements down. Great for marking progress each day!

Size is 17″ by 11″ when open so it can tuck into a small space. But it will make quite the visual impact! Place by your bathroom mirror to give you a message every morning, or in your office or work area so that while you are daydreaming you’ll be reminded of WHO you are!!

I really hope you will add one of these to your life because you deserve to be told how wonderful you are on a daily basis! If you’d like to purchase you can go to my shop on Etsy.

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Have a great day, my friends!

Hugs and Sparkles,

Mimi

Mimi's Messages

Tell Your Mama!

Has your mama been a shining light in YOUR life?

Has she guided you through

life’s tumultuous waves

and almost-drowning experiences?

 

and so she lit the way
Did she stretch out her hand for you to hold when fear made you tremble?
And open her arms widely

to receive and envelop you

when you were broken-hearted?

Did your mother support you

and encourage you to do that something scary

 that you really wanted to do?


you are absolutely fabulous

Did she clap wildly and smile widely

when you reached those difficult-to-achieve goals?

And thoroughly discuss the pros and cons of a challenging decision?

Did she show you how to live life,
and model unconditional love so you’d be able to?

You are amazing with a side of sprinkles

Then TELL her!

Mother’s Day is one of  the most important times

to give her a card, folks.

And WRITE in it all of your appreciation.

In your own handwriting, tell her thank you.

Tell her how much you love her (like she tells you).

Her heart was more tender

She will KEEP your cards

to read over and over.

 

And you will find them stored together

after she is gone. 

Why? Because she loves you

and your words matter.

 

Take it from a mama who knows.

 

Wishing those of you who are,

a Happy Mother’s Day!

Love and great, big hugs,

Passionista Mimi

 

P.S. If you are a bit word challenged, there is no shame in using someone else’s.

You can always search online for words to use.

Buy one of my Empowordment cards to get you started, then write a bit inside. 

You can do it, and your mama will be so happy!

Living With Gusto

The Lies That Bind Us

 

You were created for a purpose

and are amazing,

creative,

valuable,

and productive.

YOU were born to shine!!

I was born to shine

Do you believe that? Or do you struggle to believe that you were born to shine because instead you believe lies about yourself? Perhaps lies like you are stupid, unlovable, you will never amount to anything, you are ugly, or you are worthless.

If so, these lies are the result of believing negative things you have felt or that people have said about you. Many of us have done that and are now full of hurt and feel broken.

So what do I mean when I say “lies”?

 

Lies are thoughts or the words and actions of others that cause us to behave in a self-defeating or destructive way. Lies are limiting because they create FEAR and hold us back.

I describe fear as

Firmly Encouraging and Allowing Rubbish.

When we listen to all that rubbish going on in our brain it’s impossible to be our real, true selves. Most likely we haven’t been taught about how thought processes work so we continue to believe rubbish about ourselves. It piles up over the years until we have a whole ton of garbage that weighs us down. My goal is to help you, in a simplified way, understand how our thoughts can work against us.

The lies we believe during our formative years set us up to believe lies as adults. By the time we become adults we are firmly entrenched in this belief system which affects how we consider ourselves.

5 belief determines behavior

Belief Determines Behavior

So how do we change our belief system so we can change our behavior?

Find out how by reading my article here.

 

If you’d like to read my first post on this subject (because it’s one that is dear to my heart), find it here.

 

May your life be blessed as you incorporate these ideas to help you live with fullness and freedom from the fear that binds.

Love and big hugs along this journey,

Passionista

 

Inspiration

I Hope You Blew It!

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I hope you have messed up really big. At least once in your life. Better yet, a whole bunch of messes. Mistakes. Wrong choices. Foot-in-your-mouth embarrassment and falling down onstage kinds of messing up.

And please don’t think I’m mean, but I really hope that life has given you lemons. And disappointments. And some really hard times to work through.

Now before you think me cruel-hearted, stay with me a bit. I have some things to say about why struggles and challenges in our life are a good thing. This is truly a Motivational Monday post and you can read the rest here.   

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And if something I said helped you (because that is what this is for, actually) go ahead and share it with someone who needs it too! I’d be ever so grateful! Spread the word!

Love and hugs,

Passionista Mimi