Wednesday, January 1, 2014

happiness, empathy and small steps...told ya this wasn't just a food blog!


so you guys. blogging is kind of the best. i don't know if it's the novelty of it all, the energy that comes from using this brain of mine in a different way or the fascinations of a newfound creative outlet. my guess is that it's a combination of all those things. and i love it.

confession: lots of my ideas for recipes, blog posts and series come in the shower. i've realized it's one of the few times during the day that i have pure and unadulterated quiet. it's lovely. i usually have to dry off really quickly and make a note in my phone of all the ideas that come. today i was thinking of all "year in review" posts i've come across. this little blog is too young to do something like that. 

but i'm not.

i've had a whole 365 days of experiences and memories and hard stuff and good stuff and harder stuff and great stuff. and don't worry, i won't be sharing that all here. but i would like to share a few things i've come to internalize these past 12 months. 

so, happiness. here's another confession for you. i'm a little ashamed to admit it, but real is what i've got. so here you go. i used to be annoyed by really happy people. like super peppy, really happy people. isn't that horrible? i didn't think i could ever be like that.  and it's taken the whole of my life till this year to really understand the power of choosing happiness. i'm a little sad to think of the time wasted, but not a lot sad. in a sense, this life lesson is more meaningful to me since it took a bit longer to absorb. and i'm cherishing this new part of me. i'm still not super peppy. but i have found this abiding sense of peace and joy. and gratitude too. lots of gratitude. 

so the first part of what's defined 2013 for me is conveyed perfectly in pharrell's 24 hour music video. i know i mentioned this before, a mere two posts ago, but a friend texted me this 4 minute clip today and it's perfect. check it out if you didn't before or again even if you did. my favorite moment of the 24 hour video i've found so far is around 3:00pm when pharrell is singing with a gospel choir. and maybe it's just me, but i'm almost positive he's wiping away tears near the end around 3:04. good stuff people. 

another things that impacted me greatly this year was a short film done by RSA (Royal Society for the encouragement of the Arts) based on brené brown's talk on empathy. i think it's resonated so deeply with me because ideally, this is how we want others to interact with us. you know the whole "be the change you wish to see in the world" quote from ghandi? that's what i'm thinking with this one. it's worked WONDERS and MIRACLES in our home with our children when i'm able to take a step back and a breathe deep and apply it. and i want to be brave and do it more often. i think it could be powerful. dr. brown says this, "empathy is a choice. and it's a vulnerable choice. because in order to connect with you i have to connect with something in myself that knows that feeling." and this is the kicker..."rarely, if ever, does an empathic response begin with 'at least'." so more connection. and empathy instead of sympathy. here's the video...less than three minutes. it's a good one.

and finally, i came across this today. on good ol' instagram. it's still my favorite. i realized today that i've never really been one to set grandiose new year's resolutions. in years past i've actually started a new work out regime or eating plan before the new year, just to prove to myself i can do things on my own time. and don't get me wrong. i know lots of people who do really well with new year's resolutions. but they just haven't always been my cup of tea. well, enter emily. i've mentioned her before. makes great state pillows and inspires me to create? she posted this quote today and i like it. it makes sense. and it's doable and feels better to me. think the fable of the tortoise and the hare. all that stuff they taught in grade school is what's starting to matter the most. small steps and time is an equation i can work with.

so there's that. happiness, empathy and small steps. my small steps this year will be focused on being purposeful and more aware of my happiness and that of those close to me. and i'm guessing even smaller steps will be taken towards the practice of empathy. but long and lasting results in those departments are looking pretty good from over here.

and i can't believe it, but belinda arrives on sunday afternoon and we start shooting the cookbook on monday! to be honest, it feels a little surreal. and i'm a little nervous. but the good kind of nervous, you know?

happy new year everybody!

p.s. to receive a couple extra "if i were..." menu ideas and secret recipes every month that i only share via email click here


  1. I have really enjoyed getting to know you by what you write here. We immediately loved Jon when he photographed our family and following his blog. It's wonderful to see what a great couple you are. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

    1. Hi Allison! Thanks for the kind words...means a lot my friend :)

  2. Thank you for the happiness boost! I can't wait for Monday!!!

  3. Dear Callie. I love you. And I'm so f***ing glad you're out there making your blog amazing and lovely and full of you. ::heart::