10 years a survivor, says.

Growth and Grace

Ten years ago today.

“You have cancer,” she said, on this day ten years ago.

And so, with a  decade under my belt, here’s what I would say to my scared, naïve, sick little 18-year-old-self:

  • Your hair will grow back. It will take way longer than you want it to, and you will look ridiculous in the meantime. But it will grow back. And your new favorite cliché will be ‘a bad hair day is better than a no-hair-day.’
  • You’ll get a puppy. The best puppy ever. And you’ll name her Kimo. #CauseObviously. And she’ll be around for two more rounds of Temme cancer. But everyone will be ok. Cause that puppy is good luck.
  • This will not be the hardest season of your life. Take this one in stride. It will suck. You’ll be really sick. You’ll break up with your high school sweetheart in the midst of it…

View original post 465 more words

Advertisement

#SoThisOneTime > Shoulda’s

Growth and Grace

So this post, written on September 14, 2015, could have looked a lot different. And I could write all day bout the shoulda’s, coulda’s and woulda’s, but for the sake of #growthngrace, I’d rather focus my heart on one of the most profound #SoThisOneTimes that ever was…

So this one time, one year ago to the day, instead of all my people flying into Seattle dressed for an evening of barn dancing and cheers’ing to love with Old Fashioned’s, my people re-routed their flights to Nashville.

Yep, about 15 of my best from around the country descended on one of the best towns in America, dressed in cowgirl boots and flannel for a weekend of line dancing and cheers’ing with anything alcoholic. Operation redirect my attention to country music, dreamy accents and my favorite winery in all the land was one of the kindest, most selfless gestures I’ve ever known.

View original post 160 more words

Gliding in Spain

Growth and Grace

Spain came and went easy as a carafe of sangria. It was soothing for my weary traveler soul, perfectly fulfilling for my kitchen-missing-soul and surprising, even for my ‘seen and done a WHOLE lot lately’ soul.

I decided I was just over being ‘on the go.’ And so, I made a game-time decision to trade in the beautifully bustling Alicante for sleepy, olive-producing Algodonales. Again, I traded my hostel bum for the country girl life, where I met Mike.

IMG_1787

Mike, like all three of my previous hosts, greeted me with the most generous spirit, beautiful home and invitation to take on his nemesis [aka one of my greatest joys]–cooking. All I did for three weeks was cook to my hearts content. Old favorites and new experiments. It didn’t matter. I was in a kitchen and I blared Michael Buble and I sipped on a fat glass of red and Mike…

View original post 152 more words

Word vomit from a Spanish villa

Growth and Grace

I don’t know if it’s because I’m a million miles away from real life and the ‘talkin over the white picket fence’ thing. I don’t know if it’s because I’ve kind of spilled my guts on this little blog or because everyone knows I’ve had my heart completely shattered and feel empathy deeper than I know what to do with. I don’t know what it is…and it doesn’t really matter….but people have shared with me in this last year, like never before. People from all nooks of the world, all with a different story, have poured their hearts out to me. All looking for encouragement, or understanding or at the VERY least, acknowledgement of their reality. And no, I’m not going to spill those stories…But there ARE some things sitting hard on my heart from this pretty little Spanish villa today, and so without an ounce of expertise on any…

View original post 475 more words

New triggers in Ireland

Growth and Grace

Is it just me, or do sounds and smells throw you back to certain moments in time, more than any other triggers? I love those triggers. Especially when they throw me back to the glory days of University of South Florida life…

USF All Girl

The smell of Thai food, tanning oil and tequila [yuck] throw me back to my 18 year old self when I first met Lucia [my little elephant lovin friend]. The sound of bats crackin into a ball, cheering against FSU in the best whiteout ever and crazy dance music in Ybor throw me back to when I first met Lucia’s man, Chuck.

They were good, good days, those college days. And last week we did a lot of throwin back. Lucia and Chuck, along with new friends Kathryn, Scott, Andrea and Bella met me in Ireland for a week of birthday celebrations, foodie marathons and Irish music. And I…

View original post 287 more words

Chasing Delight

Growth and Grace

Meet Orla. She’s beautiful. Like, she glows. She’s one of the most radiant and inspiring and genuinely good women I’ve ever met.

OrlaI’m helping Orla with her health and wellness business this week, but the health and wellness she’s pumping into my soul is the real help exchange. She’s sharing her life with me—a life she centers around delight. Whatever delights her, she does. That’s it. It’s really that simple.

And right now, delight for me comes in the form of new experiences with new people.

I think one of the greatest gifts that you can give yourself when traveling is to approach all new things with an open mind and heart. Take what you will from each experience and leave whatever doesn’t resonate. Orla’s given me the opportunity to exercise that gift tenfold here in this quiet little village set  atop a proper old Irish golf course…

View original post 451 more words

Growth and Grace

If you’ve read this, then you know how I feel about my momma. And if you read this or this, then you know how I feel about my cousins. So how flipping cool is it that they just flew across the Atlantic to do some Italy and Mediterranean adventuring with me?! I just had the sweetest two weeks with mamacita and my cousin, Morgan. And my sister. Oh, that sister of mine…

I don’t believe in perfect people or perfect places or perfect travels. But I do believe with every ounce of my heart that God gave me the.perfect.sister. Ten years my junior, we’re probably not destined to be in the same phase of life at the same time…not “supposed” to have a ton in common…Jordan’s in highschool. Still a babe. And I’m….not. But that girl is as much my soul sister as my biological one. And oh…

View original post 672 more words

Heathfield Souls

Growth and Grace

It’s so blissfully quiet. Just the faint humming of the heater, the tap of my fingers touching the keyboard and birds chirping in the distance. I’m sitting cross-legged on an old comfy couch with a piping hot cup of vanilla chai. I’m surrounded by glass windows in every direction, leaving a sweeping view of a Scottish loch, the rolling Highland hills and the greenest lushest earth on the planet. Week one in Scotland is in the books and I’m now finding this blissfully quiet moment to reflect on yet another powerful period of self-growth, graciousness and the best that humanity has to offer.

I’ve found during my first week in Scotland, that the absolute, purest, best that humanity offers, comes in the form of a few characters I’ve met recently; each showing me a different lens to life and each showing me something new in myself. Heathfield [[the old, original…

View original post 581 more words

American boys in Norway

Growth and Grace

By about the second hour of snow-drenched Nikes and steep climbs, I knew this was going to be a tough hike. It was really cold, yes, but if we kept moving, it was bearable. It was really long, yes, but if we focused on the beauty around us rather than the hours left, it was justified. It was really insane to hike Norway without proper boots, but if I just kept putting one foot in front of the other, maybe I could convince myself that I could keep up with the boys.

Trolltunga was indeed a troll and a half. A total beast. Not steeper than Mailbox, but long as hell, bitingly cold and a mental challenge. The end was the sweetest reward though. The end was insane…

22 kilometers. 10 hours. 4 bum knees. 4 American boys. 1 American girl. 1 Norwegian girl. 1 insane day for the…

View original post 264 more words