Thanksgiving + Tree Trimming Rituals

Happy Monday all! I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving. The past year was not without its challenges, but on the whole, there was much to be grateful for : family, friends near and far, my husband, an exciting career path, great co-workers, good food, comfy dwellings, yoga, books, almond milk lattes, doggie snuggles, my health, art, and everything else good in this world. 

After indulging in some yummy food, football, and family time, Jason and I spent a lovely evening trimming our tree. In the three years we've lived together, it has become our tradition to decorate our tree while enjoying some appetizers and a glass of wine (or two).

This year, we sipped a bubbly rosé and enjoyed slices of smoked gouda and fresh mozzarella, followed by a Caesar salad with homemade dressing and some delicious crab cakes. We listened to some of our favorite Christmas music as we unpacked our favorite ornaments from their storage containers and unwound lines of twinkling white lights. The ritual of our yearly tree-trimming is such a simple pleasure, and one I look forward to all year. I love the subtle glow the lit-up tree adds to our living room.

Have you begun decorating for Christmas yet? Do you put your tree up right after Thanksgiving (like I do) or do you wait till later in the month?


Mondo Beyondo Dreams Revisited

Sunday mornings are the perfect time for dreaming and scheming. This morning I sat down with my favorite coffee mug and spent a few minutes reflecting on the Mondo Beyondo list (essentially a "bucket list") I created in early 2010. It was amazing to see how many of my dreams I'd accomplished since the time I first wrote my list. I adopted a rescue dog. Traveled Italy. Grew an herb and vegetable garden. Went white-water rafting. Began a journey toward my healthiest self that revealed a passion for holistic health and wellness.

It was also interesting to see how my list has changed and evolved. Certain dreams remain the same. (Be a mom. Buy a bungalow. Play piano daily. Get certified to teach yoga. Begin a non-profit yoga & wellness center.) Certain others have been edited or taken on different forms, and some have been deleted altogether.

As 2011 winds down, it feels like the right time to update my list. To start fresh with a set of goals & dreams that ring true for me right now, at this moment in time. I'm sure the list will continue to evolve, as I grow and learn more about myself.

Updated Mondo Beyondo Dreams

Travel & Adventure

Personal & Health
  • Get a tattoo
  • Earn my 200-hr yoga teacher certification
  • Eat dinner on on organic farm
  • Eat at The French Laundry
  • Celebrate my 30th birthday at a quiet and romantic restaurant with my husband, sipping wine and dining on oysters and Caesar salad
  • Have a family
  • Cook an entire menu from Chez Panisse, from scratch
  • Take hip-hop dance classes (<--took my first one last week!)
  • Spend a week at a wellness spa
  • Buy a bungalow in a metropolitan city in the Pacific Northwest
  • Set aside money for monthly deep tissue massage and acupuncture treatments
  • Learn to speak Italian
  • Ride my bike to work
  • Purchase a piano and play daily
Career & Community
  • Start a non-profit wellness center that provides complimentary yoga classes, health counseling, and other holistic health services, housed in renovated townhouse with an adjoining tea room and café
  • Give a TED talk on the power of possibility and goal-setting
  • Donate 10% of my income to charitable causes
  • Host a community-wide charitable event with proceeds benefiting local farmers and access to local foods
  • Write a column for Whole Living
  • Become lululemon's Head of People Development and/or Director of Possibility
  • Serve on the board of The Awesome Food Foundation
It feels a little scary to put all this out there, but really good and exciting at the same time. 

Have you updated your bucket list lately? I'd love to read yours, if you'd like to share. Have a lovely rest of your weekend, and happy dreaming.


An Update

Why, hello there. It's been quite a while since I've posted here on Tulips & Tea. Perhaps you've been following my adventures in health and wellness at Green Plate Studios, or perhaps not (which is okay too).

To be really honest, I've found myself missing this space. When I launched Green Plate Studios, I did so with a craving for a fresh start. A clean slate on which to sketch my new life's path. It was a transitional moment in my life in many ways, and I felt the urge to renew my online presence alongside my evolving vision and goals.

Right now in my life, I feel myself drawn back toward the things I grew to love about Tulips & Tea, which began as a way to express myself, and grew into a channel for reflecting upon life's simple pleasures and the quest to infuse joy, creativity, and mindfulness into my everyday experience. In many ways, I think the self-discovery prompted by Tulips & Tea enabled me to create a new possibility for myself within the world of health and wellness. And while I remain firm in my commitment to the holistic lifestyle that inspired Green Plate Studios, I feel myself coming full circle in my journey toward balance. A balance that includes a love of life's colorful details, and a willingness to be in a state of wonder about the whole self.

I suppose all of this is a long way of saying that I'm itching for a return to the coziness of the community we created here on Tulips & Tea. You can continue to follow along with my health and wellness pursuits at Green Plate Studios if you'd like, but you can also expect more frequent snippets of life's loveliness here on Tulips & Tea. I will welcome your voice into the dialogue wherever you choose to join in.

Thank you for being you.


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