Spend the Day With a Camera

You don’t have to have a reason to add some cute relaxation into your day! There are millions of reasons to celebrate each and every day.

My dear friend and I were missing the magic of childhood days so we hid eggs from each other and drew things that make us happy on the sidewalk. These are just a couple of very easy ways to relax, smile and remember why life is so great.

Spend your day with more color and creativity for the smiles that follow!

sidewalking it

i paint hearts

bunny eggs

Who is Colette?

Well my wonderful visitors that is my little belly dweller’s name. We found out that she indeed is a girl and were able to give her the name we had held in our hearts for so long. We’re still so indecisive about the middle name though, feel free to make any suggestions! We’re being slow and picky! Little Colette will be making her appearance around July 12th ~ we can’t wait.

Are your Friends or Lovers Holding you Back?

The mutual flow of respect and support is essential to all healthy, sustainable relationships. Whether friends or lovers, we all want to believe those closest to us want for us to thrive, to fulfill our dreams and to achieve inner and outer success. Yet when this isn’t our experience, we might want to look more closely at the nature of these relationships.

I can remember getting what for me was my first big break in my budding media career. I squealed with delight when the producer called from a popular syndicated radio show asking to interview me. My heart pounded, my mouth went dry ~ I had worked so hard and now it seemed things were about to unfold. I was ecstatic.

After I enthusiastically accepted the invitation, naturally I couldn’t wait to tell the three people closest to me (okay, and a few strangers along the way, I couldn’t contain myself). The funny thing was, the one person I thought would be the happiest for me was anything but. Upset by his confusing affect, I pressed the matter. “Aren’t you happy for me? This is what I have worked so hard for, to get the message out there, but you seem upset?” He looked at me and unexpectedly said, “Now what, you’re going to be some big star and have to start traveling. I don’t want to be with someone who …” He didn’t finish the sentence. He didn’t have to, as it turned out; his attitude towards me and my being successful was a major culprit in ending our relationship a few painful years and many missed opportunities later. Opportunities that I passed up, afraid he would leave me if I didn’t.

It would take me years to identify and learn the importance of surrounding myself with supportive people. The mutual flow of respect and support is essential to all healthy, sustainable relationships. Whether friends or lovers, we all want to believe those closest to us want for us to thrive, to fulfill our dreams and to achieve inner and outer success. Yet when this isn’t our experience, we might want to look more closely at the nature of these relationships.

Signs of Un-Supportive Relationships

Making ourselves small ~ you notice you place others’ needs or wants above your own, or hold back your wants and desires because you are afraid to alienate friends or lovers.
Hiding our success ~ you hide or minimize or significant events or progress towards your heart’s desires, not to arouse negative response, rejection or criticism
Jealousy~ you notice people who say they love or care about you are giving you mixed messages about your good fortune or advancement toward your goals. I.E. You just graduated from law school, your friend slaps you on the back and sarcastically says, “How does it feel to be part of the bottom-feeders club?” or “Ya know, most lawyers don’t even end up using their degree!”
Undermining~ someone you care about purposely says or does something to throw you off track. Perhaps your single roommate conveniently doesn’t tell you your hot new boy friend called, twice; or doesn’t mention your name to someone who could help your career when they said they would; or worse, bad-mouths you behind your back.
Competitiveness~ maybe your buddy hits on a someone you have had your eye on for quite some time and then says something like, “Hey dude, snooze you lose.” Or picks your brain about your latest idea, takes it without telling you, and uses it themselves without cutting you in.
Devils advocate~ This person is always telling you why you can’t do something or why it won’t work, even when you don’t ask and they’re not an authority on the subject. “No one’s ever done that before.” “You can’t do that; you don’t have a license!” or “Where are you going to get the money to do that?” “She’ll never go out with you!” etc.

If you suspect someone you care about or love is holding you back, consider this: Great relationships begin within! No matter what they’re doing, we need to look first at how we treat and care for ourselves. Relationships stem from this fundamental truth.

*Another of what I call my 7 Essential Truths™ is surround yourself with supportive people! This may take some work, yet you will have a group of people in your life committed to you attracting and creating what you want. One of my husband’s and my marriage vows is “I want what you want for yourself,” and the friends I have today are as much fans of my living a rich, fulfilling life as I am of them doing the same. I am grateful every day to have them all in my lives!

If you have specific questions you want Maryanne to answer for you, please email us and she’ll take a look!

Who’s Famous? .. and Why?

fame the condition of being known and talked about by many people

With the trend in reality tv and reality celebrities, it’s not so hard to believe that fans went underground as well. You can find them all over social networking sites such as youtube devoting photo montages to their favorite indie fashion celebrities.

As often as you see these artists, fashion icons and bloggers names you often see a small, jealous collection of people often demanding to know exactly what they are famous for.

“People are very jealous of success and often aren’t pleased with their own so they’ll try to take others down to feel better about themselves.” – Audrey Kitching

Believe it or not, marketing yourself can be a beneficial career. Although you might not recognize that as celebrity status, excelling and becoming an icon in your career makes you famous within a certain network of people — sometimes even globally. Whether this does or does not involve Hollywood is usually merely based on approach, style, criteria, etc.

The point is, when you work for something you believe in and you happen to excel at it — who’s to argue why you deserve it? Everyone is going to have a different subjective opinion about who is really better at what — does it matter? We all have to be different because we all have to be ourselves.

If you are not sincere, people can sense it and they’ll pounce on you. Although all success attracts negative energy right along with the positive, having low integrity and being insincere, trying to be something you’re not, is very transparent. You must be honest, be true to yourself and be the person you really are inside to truly find happiness and success in life.

famous

Got Friends?

Finding a handful of friends is, in many cases, no easy task; especially given the cultural fad of vapid, disposable, let’s-do-lunch, I-love-you-after-five-minutes, overweening, entitled, texting, emotionally handicapped, walking wounded human beings most of us act like. And that’s before you even get to hello. Finding your peeps, as they say, isn’t as easy as it seems but, like all good things, is definitely worth the work!

My mother told me I was lucky if I could count all my real friends on one hand!

Must have been fifteen or so years ago now, when it occurred to me after a string of disappointing intimate relationships that maybe she was right—again. That it might be wise to invest more time in creating some deep and lasting friendships, as they theoretically seemed to have greater staying power and could be in many ways equally fulfilling, perhaps in some ways even more.

I must add that, up until that that point, my history with friendships was rather sketchy and my role models even more so. My mother barely trusted women (her best friend slept with my dad) and my father, well, made a lot of offers people couldn’t refuse. Childhood aside, the relationship skills I had gathered afforded me as many pleasant and happy memories as traumatic or forgettable ones. Over the years, many of the friendships had been more fragile than I liked, and oftentimes out of balance one way or the other. Either I was too needy or too unavailable, or our lifestyles were not totally compatible—being a single mom certainly didn’t help. Yet, the ones I did maintain (for whatever length of time) offered a mutual comfort that, when absent, left me yearning for that very specific kind of connection that only a platonic camaraderie offers—one that, no matter how compatible, a sexual relationship does not.

Finding this handful of friends is, in many cases, no easy task; especially given the cultural fad of vapid, disposable, let’s-do-lunch, I-love-you-after-five-minutes, overweening, entitled, texting, emotionally handicapped, walking wounded human beings most of us act like. And that’s before you even get to hello. Finding your peeps, as they say, isn’t as easy as it seems but, like all good things, is definitely worth the work!

So, how do you tell if someone is got the right stuff to be your new BFF or just a GF? I figure that most of our same propensities arise when it comes to friendship as they do in an intimate relationship—except, of course, Le sexe. It’s safe to say that we are looking for many of the same things in a friendship that we are looking for in a relationship. With a few exceptions:

1. Someone to hang out with (you actually like)
2. Someone you have something in common with (aside from Le sexe)
3. Someone who will listen to your incessant or inane whining should it arise, however untimely
4. Someone who will show a genuine interest in you and your life, however ordinary or dull
5. Someone who has a high tolerance for your weaknesses
6. Someone who will have your back if ever need be
7. Someone you can count on (from OMG I have nothing to wear to my high school reunion, to OMG I have breast cancer and need someone to hold my hand during chemo)
8. Someone who will tell me the truth even if I don’t want to hear it (with compassion when needed)
9. Who doesn’t care if I am 10 pounds overweight (fill in the blank)
10. And still love me if I decide to shave my head, take up drumming and move to India for a year

Finding these select few, these magical, unconditionally (most of the time) loving phenoms can take some sussing out. Once you have decided that you want some great ones—who, if you’re lucky, just may be around throughout your lifetime—here are a few things to keep in mind. They just might make your journey a little easier done than said!

1. Set your intention—it works with friends too. Maybe you want to make two or three new good friends in the next year. Set achievable goals.
2. Set forth your criteria. What do you want? I wanted girlfriends who were self-sustaining, had a daily practice of self-care, who were on a similar spiritual track, and who had impeccable communication skills, etc.
3. List your non-negotiables, the things that just won’t work for you. One of mine was, “If you are upset you need to tell me directly and not make unilateral decisions that affect me as well.”
4. Interview well, ask good questions and wait and see if their actions match their words.
5. Don’t settle (even if you’re bored or desperate, you’ll be sorry you did!).
6. Tell the truth, even when it’s uncomfortable, better now than later, I always say.
7. Set your boundaries regarding money, men, and all things sacred!
8. Give as much as you get and make sure it flows the other way too!
9. Take your time, no need to rush, getting to know a new friend is fun and should be savored, and trust is built over time
10. Most of all, be silly, be yourself, and have some fun!

And remember, great relationships, including friendships, begin within!