Finding balance

There has been a shift inside myself from internal growth and maintenance to external efforts to bring peace to the world around me. I have found many like-minded folks who do their best to be the change they wish to see. We volunteer, and we share our experiences filled with wisdoms we’ve learned in our own lives. Our hope is, to help others, by sharing our past challenges and what we would have done differently if we could do it again.

I have spent the last year focused on trying to bring harmony to my community. As you can imagine, it’s not an easy thing to do when others would rather argue and fight instead. I did feel, at times, like I was fighting too. This isn’t my natural personality. I am a lover not a fighter and I like to think I am an upbeat person. A little feisty, but full of kindness and caring, that I want to share with my community and see if I can make any difference at all.

Honestly, I am tired of the fight. I feel I can rest well though, knowing I did my best even if I did not get the outcome I was hoping for. It took a great amount of energy for me to campaign. So much so that I did not allow much time to do the simple things I enjoy or do my best caring for myself or family. The campaign was like a force of a tornado that scooped me up and had me running in circles with no way of knowing where I would end up. I trusted this experience as it has given me new perspective.

When it comes right down to it for me, my family and health are the most important things a girl can have. I have been putting both on the back burner for a long while and it’s time to get back to the truly important things in life. Truthfully, I do wonder if my efforts were worth it. At the end of the campaign I felt like I was pouring from an empty cup and now I have a chip in it as well. The chip signifies the crack caused by my lack of maintaining my personal life.

Looking back, this is not okay with me. I should have made it a priority to find balance between campaign life, work, family, health and personal spirit care much earlier. It is a human struggle, for most of us at some time in our lives, so I can’t beat myself up too bad about it. What I can do though, is acknowledge it and then make sure I do better going forward.

I am thankful for winter as the pace of life seems to settle down and the Holidays come around, naturally bringing family back into focus. This is a time to rest after a good effort and harvest of the summer time activities. It is the perfect time to re-fill my cup per say.

If you are wondering how does a girl refill her cup? I will share with you how I plan to do so… it may not be for everyone, of course, it is custom designed for me and what I feel I need. My hopes are, by sharing my version of self-care, you can also get some ideas of what may work for you.

 

Massage – lots of them! Massage is good for body, mind and spirit. It’s proven to reduce stress, muscle tension and increase serotonin levels. Who doesn’t need that?! Other modalities that do this are acupuncture, chiropractor visits and sound healing.

 

Eating healthy – I love to cook! Soup is one of my favorite meals to make, it allows me to get creative, while filling my tummy with vitamins and minerals my body needs. It’s important to get your veggies in everyday and I had not been doing my best lately. I like to use organic produce with lots of herbs and spices. Some day’s it takes me hours to make soup and I love the whole process. It is very grounding. From chopping, slicing, and singing in the kitchen, to the part where I let it simmer for an hour or more to marry. This brings me peace.

 

Nurture my spirit and body – Some people go to church, I tend to go outside or within. Walking in nature heals my spirit even in the winter. I will meditate wayyyyy more than I have been. Silencing my mind allows me to hear what Spirit and my own soul have to say. I will also go see my friends that do energy healing because sometimes you just need a little help.

 

Family and friends – Spending time with the people who love me unconditionally, is a great way to fill up my heart. I will take my husband on dates, I will go visit my daughter, and other friends and family who let me be just me.

 

Kids – I do not have little ones of my own, but I do have family with little people I enjoy and adore. I will make time to sit on the floor and read a book with my littlest family members to bring back simple perspective to my life. Children are full of wisdom if you truly listen.

 

Animals – My dog Gus is growing older and we can’t go out hiking in the cold winter, but we can go on car rides and other adventures.  Spending time with my dog, lowers my heart rate and elevates my mood. My dog fills my heart with joy and reminds me to enjoy the ride of life.

 

Volunteer – I am a nurturer by nature. It makes me feel good to help others. I will find ways that let me do so that fit into my life and not let it overwhelm my time or energy.

 

Clean House – This pertains to my actual house that has been neglected for months as well as my internal house of intentions, emotions and feelings. I believe that the state of our outside world represents the inside of ourselves. As above, so below. I am going to clean out the closets, purge old things I no longer need and freshen up the paint. I am going to give love to the corners of the house and pick up the rugs where I may have taken short cuts to sweep issues under it. I will do that maintenance on the inside as well.

 

My intention is to share my life experience so that you know you are not alone in the struggle to find balance. I hope this blog helps you in some way. We are all in this great big world together and it’s important to practice kindness with others and yourself. Be gentle and understanding, we are all growing at our own pace and in our own ways.

 

Wishing you an abundance of joyful blessings!

With love,

Emy Minzel ~ Adventure Sister

https://emyminzel.com

@EmyMinzel

Follow the Adventure Sisters on Facebook!

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Stacy Crep ~ Adventure Sister

https://stacycrep.com

Photo Credit – Google copyright free photos –

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Whoa!

I used to watch Blossom, it was a television show back in the 90’s… way back when. Anyway, Joey was Blossom’s brother who always said “Whoa!” in a cute and funny way when he learned something that surprises him. Today, I am feeling a tiny bit blown away by the roller derby of feels I have going on after election day. Huge, determined, and powerful emotions, crashing into one another that are nothing alike.

At first, I was totally okay and thankful for the amazing experience to be a Candidate. This experience was a roller coaster of emotions, where all at once, I felt excited, terrified, empowered and heart-warmed. But now that it is over, and I did not win, after a very hard effort and sacrifice of time. I feel thankful, sad, angry, relieved, exhausted, blessed, confused, and just plain “WHOA!!!”

This has been one heckava adventure! I would not trade it for anything. I loved everything about it except how hard it was! Man! I am exhausted. I feel the tired deep down in my soul. Like pouring from an empty cup exhausted. It feels so good and so bad all at the same time. Seriously, I have called myself a walking contradiction before, but these feeling here… take the cake.

I want to be proud of myself for stepping up and taking the chance to be the change I wanted to see. I found out it was much harder than I thought it would be. I want to be proud of my work, but I also have this opposite feeling that I let a LOT of people down. People who I have gotten to know and really enjoy.

This opportunity to see the greatness in my community has changed me to my core. I am beyond a doubt in awe of how Central Minnesotans truly care about each other and our small-town way of life we love. I love how we support one another and even if we may not vote the same way, still manage to get allong. Quite nicely most the time.

I have learned that the people who scream the loudest do the least from the sidelines. I have learned quiet people have a whole lot to say. I found I love to and benefit from listening. This experience was raw, from the heart, listening to the families I share my grocery store and gas station with. The folks I talked to are no different than me, they want us all to get along too.

I saw for myself what I knew all along. We have far more in common than not. I think that our communities do need healing. They need to see that it is possible. Everyone who I met, wants it to be possible and needs it to be possible. We need each other to survive. Not only physically but emotionally and spiritually.

As a small business owner, I know the importance the support of my community means to me. I take my job very seriously and do the best I can every time, every client. Because I want the people I help to come back to me. This is what small business is all about, customer service. People remember the way you made them feel. Just like all folks, I have not been perfect, but I took those experiences as lessons and work to improve myself and the way I leave people feeling every day.

I’ve been feeling a lot of feels, but I had an epiphany of sorts. I wish to take my loss as a redirection of my priorities. Maybe, just maybe, there is a different way to do what I want to do? I have some ideas. I will do some research and see where this takes me. Until then, I choose to be thankful for this attempt to be the change I wish to see.

I will be thankful for each and every soul I came across in my political journey, as well as every experience that made me step outside of my comfort zone. I had been craving adventure and a political campaign offered me just that. I am still determined to experience all the adventure I can, even if it’s right in my backyard.

Do I recommend running for office for everyone? Nope. Do I recommend it to those who want to change their perception of the world? Yep. I think far differently of politicians now. This is not a position set up for those without motivation. You must have the funds, the time, purpose and drive that keeps you working your fool head off.

I will admit, I did and do still have an ulterior motive. I want to protect our water here in Minnesota, it is what makes us so great. It sustains our economy and environment plus our way of life. It is imperative to our future.

Yet, I am only me, there is only so much I can do. The majority of people in my district do not agree with my platform, so there must be another way to be the change I wish to see. I must work on this… I already have a plan. Will I run again? Maybe. But there is time to decide and a lot of life to live between then and now.

Until then, I will work to feel all my emotions that will lead me to more adventures and help define how I live my life. I could choose to be upset that things did not work out how I wished they would. But I trust that this journey was an important part of me getting to where I was meant to be.

Working through my roller derby of eclectic emotions is what the human experience is all about. You feel them, let them pass and acknowledge the ideas that come before and after them. That’s the meaty part. The conclusions and the epiphanies caused by the experience and adventure.

The journey happens in the now.  I have been asking for lessons through Joy. I received an abundance of them. I must not allow this one loss to diminish my heart opening experience. It does have a purpose and I still have a purpose.

Let the next adventure begin!

Wishing you an abundance of joyful blessings,

Emy Minzel ~ Adventure Sister

https://emyminzel.com

EmyforHouse.com

@emyminzel

@EmyforHouse15A

Follow the Adventure Sisters on Facebook!

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Stacy Crep ~ Adventure Sister

https://stacycrep.com

‘Authentically me.’

Stacy’s husband, Marty, has been contributing to our Adventure Sisters’ literary adventures by helping edit our blogs. Stacy and I are writers, not editors, totally different beast. Marty says he’s no editor, just a hack trying to help out (He added this remark! He’s a funny guy too!) We still appreciate his help very much.

I tell you this because he had mentioned that he noticed my use of the phrase “authentically me”.  It is one of my favorites along with “Protect what you love”, which I put on my campaign t-shirts. He said we should make an T-shirt that says “authentically me” and I absolutely love the idea. He even worked up some ideas.

I would like to tell you the back story on how I learned to be “authentically me.” It comes from my mother who used to be a little rough around the edges. My mom raised me by herself. Well mostly, she was a single mom who got help looking after me from her parents, siblings and good friends. Friends, who I still think of as family today. She was kind but tough, with a heart was large as Lake Superior, but a bullshit meter with a hair trigger.

Mom would often say what was on her mind in front of anyone. Especially if they deserved it or just plain needed to hear the truth. She has softened somewhat with age, but still has her opinions, as we all do. My mom was fluent in profanity and handed the linguistic skills of a sailor down to her daughter. I used to be annoyed when people would tell me how much I am like my mom, but now I am very proud to hear it.

My mom is a strong woman, who has not had an easy life. She was the oldest of five siblings and was depended on to help raise them. She was a mother hen very early in life. People thought she was bossy. I have come to find out that ‘bossiness’ means she cares. She taught me the value of a good work ethic and loyalty. She taught me that, even if you don’t want to do something, sometimes you just have to anyway. Sometimes, the hardest and the right thing, are the same.

My mom was the perfect example of someone who knows how to love unconditionally. She taught me it is okay to fight. It is okay to get mad. It is okay to hash it out but in the end… we still are family and you are still loved. My mom taught me the value and grace of unconditional love and let me tell you, I tested those limits plenty. I could be a stinker! I was a good girl, when I was younger. I got good grades but I would do rebellious things, just for the thrill of it.  I made her worry a lot. I do feel bad for this now.

Mom is an outgoing person most of the time. She taught me the importance of being social and caring for those around you. When it is time for a party, she’s the first one to show up with food and treats and the last one to leave. That’s because she’s the one helping you clean up. Just like most of us, my mom can be hard to like occasionally. She doesn’t pull any punches and I appreciate her frankness. After all, I would rather know the truth about someone’s feelings and beliefs, than some sugar-coated BS. My mom is a straight shooter and I have tried to be the same because I respect that in her.

There were times that I would be mad at my mom in my younger years, for being over protective. Although I can’t blame her, at times I bet it was like trying to tame a wild horse; raising this free spirit! Yet, looking back now that I have been a mom and concerned for my own daughter, I see what made her act in that way.

A mother’s love is fierce, impenetrable and often unable to be expressed in a way that is easy to understand. As with most mother daughter relationships, we’ve had our ups and downs. I now realize the downs were there to help us learn from one another and appreciate who we were becoming.

It’s tough when your relationship changes, because YOU change.

I am not a free spirited ‘know it all’ teenager anymore. I have learned it is hard to let go of the pieces of your baby that you cherish. Sometimes you just want them to stay the same. Life has a way of helping us mature, even while our relationships lag behind. This causes growing pains, but it is for the best. I find that we get along much better now that we can appreciate each other for who we truly are.

Authentically me. Authentically her. I learned from my mom to accept that I am perfectly imperfect. If by chance someone does not appreciate my authentic self… well… that’s okay. Or like Gena (mom) would say “F’ em.”  Because I have learned to love and accept myself and that is what matters. I have to live with myself every day. I know who I am inside and out and that others only see a snapshot.

I have learned its okay to make mistakes because the important people in my life, know that I am human, and they love me anyway. I like to give others the same courtesy. I learned that from my mom also and she learned it from her mom. I have learned my family ‘rocks my face off with awesomeness’ and I need to put more time and appreciation in now. I learned that lesson the hard way with losing my grandparents and having things left unsaid.

She taught me to say what you need to say. Trust in your own voice. As Gena says: “This is the only voice I got!” If you know her… you are laughing right now but you know you love her too. I feel blessed that she taught me by example how to speak up for myself, to know my voice and opinion matter as much as anyone else’s.

I am thankful to have been blessed with a mom who loved and supported me through all the growing pains. Never once was she not there for me. Another life lesson not to take for granted! I am so thankful for my mom, husband, daughter, family and friends who love me. The real me; inside and out. Authentically me. I love you guys!

What helps you stay authentically you?

What keeps you grounded in your purpose? Please share your thoughts! I really would love to hear from you.

Emy Minzel ~ Adventure Sister

https://emyminzel.com

EmyforHouse.com

@emyminzel

@EmyforHouse15A

Follow the Adventure Sisters on Facebook!

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Stacy Crep ~ Adventure Sister

https://stacycrep.com

I have learned what is important to me.

I have learned what is important in life to me, after learning some lessons the hard way. Losing friendships and failed relationships have taught me a lot about what is important as I travel through life. I have taken for granted, very important people in my life, only to regret it after it was too late to do anything. Losing my grandparents within a month of each other was a giant slap to my ego. I learned some major life lesson’s the hard way, for a few years after that.

The saying “You don’t know what you got until it’s gone.” Had significant meaning to me after these tragic events. I did not get to tell my grandmother, to her face, how much I truly looked up to her and that I believed she was a real-life hero. I did not get to thank her for her the love and kindness that helped shape who I had become. As a writer, I am much more comfortable writing out my feelings then expressing them with my voice. Yet, these experiences have taught me I must use ‘my voice’ when it is important for me to do so.

It is important, that I let the people I love, know just how much I love them and why. Many people in the world are sensitive, self-conscious and really do wonder if they are truly loved. I spent time, running circles in my own head, when I was younger wondering what made me worthy of love? Did just being born mean that I was entitled to love? I had a long and difficult journey, in my youth, learning just how to love myself. Learning how to give myself the respect and significance, I often gave freely to others, yet didn’t feel worthy of myself. In time, I found what I was looking for. Me. I was there all along.

I am grateful I have learned to love my perfectly imperfect self. That was because I also learned how to love others unconditionally first. I learned that nobody is perfect, and I should not expect myself to be either. I learned that I love other people’s imperfects just as much as I love the things they are really great at. My daughter is sometimes too shy to come out of her shell. When I see her acting this way I think; “I wish she knew just how wonderful she truly is. She is so smart, kind, witty, generous and has a heart of gold. I wish she could see herself as I see her.” I often wonder what others see when they see me. Do you?

I have learned what matters and is important to me; is that I let others know the wonderful qualities I see they possess. I have learned to appreciate my own mother, so much more, after the death of my grandparents. I am an only child, like my daughter. I learned what it felt like to have your one and only child move out and grow up. Never once, when I was younger and moving out on my own, did I even think of my mom’s feelings about the situation. I was so excited to be moving on with my life that I didn’t even realize she was also beginning a new journey herself.

Learning to appreciate the experiences of my elders, like my mother, is also important to me. I would much rather learn some lessons through the experiences of others, especially if they are difficult ones. Learning that with age comes wisdom, was a turning point for me. I started to reach out to others more experienced then I. Life experiences are meant to be shared; sometimes they help you and other times you can use your experiences to help others.

Another value that is important to me is connection. To feel heard, to be appreciated for who I truly am. I have learned to always try my hardest to be ‘authentically me.’ I have learned that when I’m not me, when I try to fit in and follow the heard, life gets more difficult. It became of utmost importance to me, to listen to my heart and the callings of my soul. It was difficult at times, but I never felt more purposeful in my life then when I started to truly be me. Quirky humor, type ‘A’ personality, Nature loving hippie chick, who really wanted to let my light shine.

I wanted that light to shine in a way that helped others the same way I had learned from the strong women in my life. I wanted to pay it forward and decided that if I wanted to change the world, I had better work on myself first. So, I did. I started looking within for the answers instead of searching for external direction. I figured out that nobody knew what I needed, to feel fulfilled, but me. I just had to ask myself the hard questions and hold myself accountable for the changes I wished to see.

It became important to me to practice kindness. To share my love for life, the planet and for others in a way that felt good and healthy. I started by gardening organic produce. Working to learn about and implementing Permaculture practices around my home. I wanted to nurture the Earth as she nurtured me. I learned to respect my mother’s opinion instead of rolling my eyes like a teenager. I learned that my young daughter had more wisdom then she led on. I learned I was also full of wisdom I could chose to use as well.

I learned that my husband’s commitment to me was the foundation I depend on to be brave enough to shine my light in the political arena. Without him offering a safe place to fall, I would have not felt comfortable enough to put myself ‘out there.’ I have learned to not take this very special relationship for granted. I have learned to be better at keeping up relationships by taking responsibility for contacting my friends and family instead of waiting for the phone to ring. I do this because my relationships are important to me.

People are important to me; my family, friends, community and the strangers (friends) I do not know yet revolving on this planet around me. We are all connected on this big old Globe. I see that we have so much more in common then we could ever have in differences. I work to shine my light to promote peace, community and working together.

This is me. I have learned that it is okay to be as me, as I can be, while loving others for who they truly are as well. Warts and all. I truly believe most people are good in their souls, they just have to choose to foster the good and utilize it. I do my best to do the same. It is connection that is most important to me, not money or power. It is the divine spark of life within that connects us all that I like to promote in myself and others. This is what I find most important.

Empowering others to be as authentic as possible to themselves is what powers me to be and do better every day. The good in me, sees the good in you!

What is most important to you?

Wishing you an abundance of joyful blessings,

Emy Minzel ~ Adventure Sister

https://emyminzel.com

EmyforHouse.com

@emyminzel

@EmyforHouse15A

Follow the Adventure Sisters on Facebook!

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Stacy Crep ~ Adventure Sister

https://stacycrep.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Taken for granted

Today I am up in northern Minnesota in Beaver Bay for a fall weekend wedding. I am attending this wedding with my daughter, who is in the ceremony. The bride is a young woman I have known since she was born, the year before my daughter. I am so excited to see her walk down the aisle in such a beautiful setting. The trees are at their peak color and look like Candy Corn on the shores of beautiful Lake Superior. The weather is chilly, but the scenery and company are amazing.

Wedding day

On the way up to the North Shore with my daughter, we stopped in Duluth for some food, then decided to take our time to see a few sights. We stopped at the Split Rock Light House, so we could take a hike down to the rocky shores of our beautiful Great Lake. My daughter said she had never been to Duluth and it was her first time to see Lake Superior.

Split Rock Light House

This realization made me feel like I had failed my daughter somehow! I am from northern Minnesota on the Iron Range side. We have always gone to visit family, just skimming by Duluth/Superior area, to get to where we were going on holidays or family reunion trips. Yet as close as we had been, I had never taken her to see the majestic and stunning scenery of what the North Shore of Lake Superior had to offer.

Beaver Bay

I am a Boundary Waters girl, I like to rough it, because I enjoy the peace and solitude that comes with being in the middle of God’s country. My daughter is not a ‘roughing it’ kind of girl. She likes plumbing and the internet with a warm bed to sleep in. It had never occurred to me that I had never brought her to this more populated, yet still environmentally beautiful, area that Minnesota has to offer.

What stuns me even more is that it took me 25 years to realize that I had taken the Minnesota, I had grown up knowing, for granted! I had not found the time to share my experiences with my daughter when she was younger. As I expressed my thoughts to my daughter I said:

“I feel like I somehow failed you as a Mother! I did not show you ‘why’ I love Minnesota as much as I do. I took it for granted, somehow thinking you just didn’t enjoy the outdoors as much as I do.”

My heart felt so heavy at this realization. Yet I was thankful to have the opportunity to be in the moment, standing on the boulders of Lake Superior, with my favorite person on the Planet.

She said. “Mom, to be fair, I probably would not have appreciated it or enjoyed it as much as I am now.”

My eyes filled with tears I did not let fall. I did not want her to see me so emotional about my inner strife. We were in fact having a great time exploring and enjoying the large waves crashing around us, as we carefully navigated the rocky shores of Lake Superior.

Danica on Lake Superior

 

Instead I told myself. “This has got to change! I need to take initiative to show my baby girl; ‘why’ I really do love Minnesota as much as I do.”

From this moment forward, I will not take for granted the beauty of the State I love so much. We have plans to explore Minnesota together a lot more often now. It is because I love Minnesota so much that I am willing to change my comfortable life working from home to go work in St. Paul at the Capital.

My goal is, and always has been, to protect the Minnesota we know and love for future generations.

My goal is to work to protect and restore the nearly 50% of Minnesota’s waters that are already too polluted to eat the fish from. My goal is to protect our waters from further pollutions like the mining proposals that could devastate the Northeastern Region on Minnesota.

I totally know that Northern Minnesota is not ‘in my district’ as the central Minnesota Representative of 15A. But as a State Representative, I would get a vote.  I get a voice and a say and I am going to use it to protect ALL of Minnesota. So that I can spend more time showing my daughter the beauty Minnesota truly holds. Before our Lake resources are taken for granted and spoiled for the future. You can bet your butt I will fight my heart out for the blessings of my district as well.

My goal is to not make the same mistake, I had made with my daughter, and allow a whole State to take for granted the natural beauty and clean water we have been blessed with. My goal is to remind others of what we stand to lose if we proceed with the usual money hungry politics; bending to the will of forgein industry that does not respect or care what happens to Minnesota.

I will remind you that Sulfide-Copper Mining has a 90% failure rate with its contamination containment areas around the world. Leading to 500 years of pollution. Basically forever.

Five Hundred years of generation after generation not allowed to play on the shores of our beautiful great Lake Superior. Never will Adventure Sisters Stacy and I be able to Adventure in the BWCA without worry of getting sick. Multiple Generations before the most visited National Park in the Nation, the Boundary Waters Canoe Area, will be able to again host the millions of nature lovers that come to seek the peace and solitude of God’s Country. Well past yours, mine and any of our grandchildren’s lifetimes, before it’s safe again to use.

All because we took our biggest blessing of fresh water for granted for the promise of (maybe a) couple hundred jobs. Like stepping over a $100 bill to pick up a quarter. It just does not make sense to me. I refuse not to learn from this life lesson! I must learn from this heart-breaking and eye-opening experience of taking things for granted with my daughter.

Although I was sad to learn this lesson, it was delivered to me in the kindest way possible. A lesson through Joy, a blesson. I was having a fabulous time, spending girl time with my only child when Spirit kindly guided this realization to me for a reason. I must remember to count my blessings and move forward, vowing to not let this happen again.

Danica split rock outlook

Adventure on my friends. Remember do not take your blessings of family and healthy environment for granted. We would and will truly miss them when they’re gone.

Wishing you an abundance of joyful blessings,

Emy Minzel ~ Adventure Sister

https://emyminzel.com

EmyforHouse.com

@emyminzel

@EmyforHouse15A

Follow the Adventure Sisters on Facebook!

https://www.facebook.com/BWCAdventureSisters

Stacy Crep ~ Adventure Sister

https://stacycrep.com

 

Auntie Em!

There is a boy who reminds me just how great kids really are; we’ll call him G! G is my Cousin’s son, who is going to be five, very soon. I am an only child, so my cousins are the closest thing I have to siblings and I love them all. Ever since the Wizard of Oz, I have wanted to be an ‘Auntie Em’ and I am so thankful my Cousins allow me to be this. I have mostly boy Cousins. We grew up together and spent many nights at our Grandparent’s house, when we were little.

There were four of us that were all around my age but younger. I was the ‘Mother Hen’ of the group. I was also the leader of our little pack and loved that I had my Cousins to hang out with. Ever since I can remember, we have got along very well. I still love my Cousins and hanging out with them as much as I can to this day!

I had my Daughter before my Cousins were even thinking about having children. Today she is twenty-five and my best accomplishment in life. Now that my Daughter is grown, I have discovered a renewed appreciation for other people’s children. When I was younger and in the middle of raising my Daughter, there were days it felt like being a Mom, was a lot of hard work.

I do regret the times I did not see her ‘magical’ qualities as a child. I would sometimes tend to ‘not notice’ because I was just so darn tired from working, cooking, cleaning and doing all the Mom things that needed to be done. I wish I would have been able to spend more time enjoying her childhood, instead of working through it. But this is the world we lived in at the time. I had to do it and that’s that. I cannot turn back time, I can only choose to enjoy her as much as I am able to now.

Now that my Daughter is grown and out of the house, I find that I enjoy my visits to see my Cousin’s family even more than before. Because now, he has two sons, who sincerely make my heart fill with Joy when my Husband and I walk through their door.

Big G says to me; “Auntie Em! I am so happy to see you!” as his face lights up just for me! Oh, heavy sigh of happiness!!!

This, right there, is all it takes to make my heart swell with love for my little friend. Who now has me wrapped around his little finger! Just thinking about it makes me smile.

Since he was born, I have loved to come to visit and hang out with my friend Big G. For some reason, we just have a bond that makes us really enjoy each other’s company. We have easy conversations and we enjoy playing games or just hanging out when I visit. He’s a very outgoing kid and we get along great.

His Parents let me be the one that reads him his bedtime story when I visit. I had forgotten how precious and what a blessing it is to be able to do so. Reading to my Daughter was one of my very favorite memories of spending time with her. It was also something that I very much enjoyed when my Grandmother read to me as a little girl. So I like to share that experience when I can.

I find it interesting, now that I am older, that I have more patience with and enjoy the silliness kids bring. I love how they ask two hundred questions a day. I love that they say exactly what is on their minds. And I love that they know if you love them or not.

My Cousin and his beautiful Wife have two boys. Big G is my buddy and Little G, just so happens, to really like my Husband! What another very cool coincidence that again makes my heart smile. Kid’s pick their people and I am so thankful to be able to have a part in their lives. I enjoy watching them grow into their own personalities and it is a very cool experience to witness.

I am so thankful that my Cousins have allowed me to be a small part of their new growing families. I think it is great that we can keep our connections from childhood into our adulthood and our families tight. We do not have a large family and as I grow older I realize the importance of cherishing my family relationships and doing what I can to keep us close.

Having a role as “Auntie Em” has become one of my very favorite experiences in life and a blessing I did not expect. Don’t get me wrong, I like kids, but I did not have the time to really enjoy them in my younger years. I feel lucky now, that I can at this time in my life.

I grew up with some amazing Aunties and I would like to be the same resource for my little buddies!

What unexpected life experiences make your heart sing with Joy?! I would love to hear from you!

Wishing you an abundance of joyful blessings,

Emy Minzel ~ Adventure Sister

https://emyminzel.com

EmyforHouse.com

@emyminzel

@EmyforHouse15A

Follow the Adventure Sisters on Facebook!

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Stacy Crep ~ Adventure Sister

https://stacycrep.com

You’re So Nice!

I have been making a lot of new friends this year, which I enjoy very much! Of course, when I meet new people, I usually try to be as kind as possible. I believe in treating others the way you would like to be treated. I have learned, from my Grandmothers’ example, to live your beliefs. I have chosen, as my religious practice, to offer kindness and compassion to every living being I come across.

Lately, I have been hearing; “You are so nice!” or “She is so nice!” when I hear them talk to others about me. I find this very flattering and it makes ‘me’ feel wonderful that I leave others feeling good!  This is exactly how I want others to feel if I can help it. But if I am being totally honest, my husband laughs a little, when he hears it too…

Like all folks, I have many qualities, some of which are very opposite! The longer you know someone, the more you get to know them, right?! My best friend of thirty years gave me a birthday card earlier last month that said.

“You’re the Birthday Queen today! You should be honored, worshipped, and just a little bit feared…. Just like every day!”

We both found the card to be quite hilarious! Because this girl knows me very well after three decades of friendship. She has seen the me that will stand up for myself when needed.

I enjoy making people feel good when they are around me. What a blessing to be able to do so! Not everyone is as blessed to be as outgoing and comfortable with life as I have learned to be. There are times I have my moments, though. When I am not feeling so secure and acting kind. In those moments, others feel comfortable enough to think they can bully me… Ha! Wrong.

I try my very hardest to keep calm with the people whom I adamantly disagree with. But… Let me tell you. This girl also knows when to stop being so darn nice. It is not my favorite way to communicate but sometimes I feel I must be clear with my boundaries by being clear with my actions, if my words are not being respected. Sometimes I choose to act by walking away, other times I choose to stand and fight; with my words of course.

For me fighting is exhausting and kindness is energizing. I would rather work to practice respecting others, just as they are, if they are respectful in return. We do not have to agree on everything, but I do demand the respect of being treated civil, regardless. I find that there are more favorable outcomes, even in times of strife, when we do our best to listen and practice gentleness.

I was raised by single my mom, who was supported by my aunties and her girlfriends that became my ‘adopted aunties’. My mom surrounded me with strong, opinionated and independent women who raised me to be the same. Be nice but take no shit! I was also a free-range kid given trust to ‘be good’ and allowed to roam without worry. This cultivated my adventurous spirit. It helped me learn to explore what interested me, to be brave and to trust my instincts.

There have been times in my life that I have not always been so nice. When I had more toughness then kindness in me but now I choose to live with more kindness and patience. It took me many years to know when to lose my cool and when not too. It is true that with age comes wisdom.

I believe I had to go through those experiences to learn the lessons I needed to grow as a person. Life has taught me that I much prefer to go through life being kind, but at the same time, being firm with my boundaries. You CAN be kind and tough all at the same time! I believe everyone embodies these yin yang traits. These experiences have taught me that I like to be nice!

I believe that kindness is like my religion. I practice kindness as often as I can, it is my way to “practice what I preach”. I very much wish to be a light in a sometimes, dark world. However, given enough time, my new friends will see the duality that lives within me and everyone else. I can only hope they accept my humanness with kindness themselves.

I love being kind. I love that kindness is the energy I choose to share with the world around me, as often as possible.

Which energy do you share the most?!

Wishing you an abundance of joyful blessings,

Emy Minzel ~ Adventure Sister

https://emyminzel.com

EmyforHouse.com

@emyminzel

@EmyforHouse15A

Follow the Adventure Sisters on Facebook!

https://www.facebook.com/BWCAdventureSisters

Stacy Crep ~ Adventure Sister

https://stacycrep.com