Saturday, January 4, 2014

Feeling Good

Before I took down all the Christmas decorations I took a few more pictures. I always wanted to get the pictures of the baby with the Christmas lights, but it didn't happen and even if I tried when Riley was a baby I didn't have the skills. I am still working on it, but it takes practice, right? I think it actually might be harder now because my almost 4 year old wants to move all the time. Anyway here are a couple attempts.

Riley really wanted to have her Sophia snow globe in the picture and I actually think it adds to it. I then let her have some fun and add whatever she wanted which resulted in her New Years crown and her cup of snacks from earlier in the day. Hey, whatever she thinks works for this picture works for me as long as she lets me practice. Still need to work on this, but was fun to do. Lucky for me, Riley usually loves to have her picture taken.

It was getting close to bath time, but I wanted to try one trick I had read about where you could create bokeh in chosen shapes so I quickly put together what I needed, knowing that I didn't have it quite right... but knowing that I could still get the general effect and this is what I came up with.

Yeah, it's not outstanding, but it was the first step and I was able to create the shapes I was going for with just some paper strategically cut and taped. Cool.

But this post isn't really about my never ending mediocre attempts at getting decent Christmas light pictures. What I really want to talk about is our Feel Good Jar.

Last year, I was in a funk. Bad. There were a number of things I could probably point my finger too: weather, work, parenting is just freaking hard sometimes... and I knew I needed to do something about it. At work I started a Grateful Friday email chain. I thought it might be silly, but it was well received by my team and is still happening today. I knew I needed something like this at home as well. Essentially I knew I needed to WILL good thoughts into my life.

So I set up a jar in my kitchen and told my husband to write down any 'feel good' moments in the jar... and then in a year we would sit down and review. As the year went on I realized two things:

1. Wouldn't this have more impact if I told my husband right now how wonderful I think he is instead of just writing it on some paper to be reviewed later.

2. I wish my husband would embrace this more.

So lesson one is to still put good things in the jar, but also make sure to tell any person involved in it so they know how awesome they are right then. Also,  lesson two is to explain to husband what you mean by feel good - you'll see what I mean in a minute.

So the moment finally came on January 1st where Riley, Jesse and I sat down to read through all those scraps of paper. I had been asking Riley (mostly throughout the last half of the year) what made her feel good and then I would write it out and put it in the jar so it was important for her to be there when we read them.

Riley pulled each slip out of the jar and I read them and my husband quickly realized that mine were dated, and detailed, and heartfelt. And his? Not so much. Not because he's a jerk, but I don't think he got what this was about. But at the end he did and he made sure I had the jar set up for this year. I can't wait to see what the next year brings, but here's a taste of what we read about this past year.

See? Most of those are mine and are detailed.

And Jesse's? Yeah, this is what they looked like. Another mentioned his new favorite wine.

Riley's answers were some of my favorites. I'd randomly ask her what makes her feel good or what makes her happy. Her answers ranged from "you guys" to "scrubbing my nails". Lol. Hey, I like clean nails too.

I wasn't sure if Riley would get what this was about when we sat down to read through them, but she seemed really excited about it so I hope she (ha, and my husband) walked away with an inkling of what this meant. 

And even though I don't know what I did to make my husband write "my hot awesome wife" or when it was, it's just good to be appreciated. I can't wait to see what the next year brings.

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