Wednesday, December 23, 2009
The other night, I disappeared out of the house for WAY longer than I expected. The horses decided it was time for a spontaneous healing session.
But it was dusk, snow was on the ground, and it was freezing!!!
Let me tell you though, it was one heck of a healing session- I cried my eyes out and let go of a lot of junk I didn't know I was carrying!
When I got inside, I was absolutely frozen, head to toe. "Darn, I'm COLD!," I cried out when I came in the door.
But instead of being frustrated that I had been nowhere to be found for so long, Greg had a surprise ready for me.
"Good thing I have something for you then!," he smiled, as he handed me a fresh cup of hot chocolate that he made from SCRATCH!.
Wow- how lucky am I??? Just when I'm cold and exhausted from doing a heap of emotional work, there is Greg, my angel, standing ready with the perfect treat.
Thank you Greg for your thoughtfulness!
Readers: How does your partner surprise you with just what you need? Please share!
Sunday, December 6, 2009
Thursday, December 3, 2009
I like to wake up and remind myself of that every morning as I walk outside to feed the ponies, not just because of this beautiful ranch and the chance to live with my amazing herd, but to be given the unconditional love of a husband who has such a pure heart.
Greg’s been working in Dallas for over 3 months now- home on most weekends. Over Thanksgiving he was home for a week!
It would be understandable if he wanted a break during that time. I mean, heck, I’d be tired from all that stressful travel and just want to kick back and relax- you know, have a good woman take care of him for once!
But that’s just not in his nature.
Nope, he feels bad that I’ve had to take care of the ranch and all the animals all by myself all this time.
So he’s going to make it up to me.
Instead of sleeping in, he gets up and gives me a reprieve from feeding the horses in the morning. He even measures out all their bothersome supplements. He makes me breakfast. He does laundry. He feeds the dogs. He takes care of the dishes. He takes me out for dinner.
Then, he paints the porch we’ve been putting off all Fall. And when I want a day off from painting, he says with no frustration at all: Go ahead, you deserve it.
And I don’t have to ask for a thing- he just does all of that because we are a team.
All he asks for in return? Back rubs- and lots of them.
As I said, I’m one lucky girl- and I’m sending out a huge thank you to Greg for all of the hard work and accommodations he’s had to make to help bring my dream of this ranch into reality.
Readers: What does your partner do that makes you feel like the luckiest person alive? Please share!
Monday, October 5, 2009
Greg has been stuck traveling to Dallas every week now for more than a month.
We love being together and a good snuggle on the couch can erase a whole day of stressful experiences.
But so can sweet emails like this one I got from him today:
Good Afternoon Sweet Pea -
I just thought I'd share a couple of fortunes I got from Pei Wei this afternoon:
1. Your love of life can carry you through any circumstance.
2. Love is a present that can be given every single day you live.
I'm giving you my love as a present today and every day.
I love you!
You know what I love most about this email?
It's clear that whatever is happening to him all the way over in Dallas, I'm still right there next to him in his head.
Otherwise, he wouldn't immediately think to translate his fortunes into what it reminds him about our love.
It's like he leaned over the table, read them to me, and told me how much he loves me.
I feel like I'm right there with him, sipping too-sweet Chinese tea. It's so comforting to know he's keeping me close.
It's little things like that, that keep you connected, no matter the distance.
When you really love someone, it comes naturally to keep them close to your heart and mind, whether you are in the same town, or a different country.
Readers: How does your sweetie keep you close even when you are far away? Please share!
Saturday, August 8, 2009
Jenn has become a Creepy Cat Woman.
That's right. The Happily Ever After Horse Ranch is now the home to not one, not two, not even three, but FOUR kitties.
So now, if you've spent any time on this blog, you're asking yourself: "Self, how could Greg have let this happen. He's not a cat person and he certainly isn't creepy. Why in the world does he have four cats?"
To which I have to say, I really don't know.
I grew up in a house in the country. We had a bunch of animals, including dogs, horses, a sheep, chickens, geese, ducks, and yes, even cats. But our cats were barn cats. They served a purpose. They kept the barn and garage mice-free environments. They didn't live inside the house. We rarely saw them and never thought of them as pets.
Jenn on the other hand grew up with only cats. They were indoor-outdoor cats and were a source of and outlet for love and caring. They had names like "Fluffy" and were dressed in doll clothes and taken around in strollers. They were a part of the family and a big piece of Jenn's life.
When Jenn first moved in with me, I had two rules:
- Love me, love my dogs.
- No CATS!
I didn't want them stinking up the house and ruining stuff. And for three years I stuck to my guns, buying Jenn cat calendars and books rather then the real thing. But finally, after constant trips to the Pets Mart cat cage and a tearful discussion in the truck, I finally acquiesced and let Jenn get a cat we named Squeeks.
Now Squeeks is a great cat. He's black and white. Lean and athletic. Friendly and self assured. There's just one problem: He loves me but hates Jenn.
This quandry led us to our second cat - J'oui.
Now J'oui is a lot of things Squeeks isn't. First and foremost, he LOVES Jenn. He's got a purr that's two sizes too big and he's just clumsy enough to be adorable. And he's got giant blue eyes. In other words, a purrfect '10' in Jenn's world.
So at that point, I figure we're all set. Jenn finally has a cat that loves her and I've got a cat that loves me.
They get along great and keep each other entertained when we're not around.
Done and done.
But then, on the first really cold day we had last winter Jenn says, "I think I hear a cat outside."
Sure enough, Jenn steps onto the porch, yells, "Here kitty, kitty!" and as if on cue, an emaciated, shivering cat comes out from under the porch and starts rubbing on Jenn's legs. Cat number three - Big Kitty-Kitty arrives (not the most original of names, I know).
So now we're certainly set for cats. In fact, now the cats out number the people and dogs and are tied with the horses in number.
Big Kitty-Kitty recovers nicely from her apparent long-term homeless problem and settles right in, loving both of us and the dogs. There's just one problem: Her inability to get along with the other cats. But that's okay. She stays in one part of the house while Squeeks and J'oui have the rest of the house.
So what's the last thing we need?
Something we need as much as another horse or a hole in the head?
But does that stop Jenn from looking?
Does it stop Jenn from falling in love with a tiny black kitty?
And does it stop us from bringing home said tiny black kitty?
You see, I now see how much pure love and joy those kitties bring to Jenn. She absolutely adores them. She takes countless pictures of them, calls and emails me with updates on them, and takes great pleasure in having them around.
Who am I to deny her these simple pleasures?
Having cats in the house makes Jenn a happier person. Her days get broken up by cats playing at her feet or striking adorable poses in the sun. She finds great joy in snuggling with the cats and sharing her love with them.
So, to answer the question above, I have four cats, not because Jenn is indeed a Creepy Cat Lady (although she does show some tendencies towards becoming one) but because it's a small way I can make her happier and feel more loved.
But I swear, four is where I draw the line!
Welcome to the family Little P!
Readers: Where have you given in your normal "rules" so that your partner could have more joy! Please share!
Thursday, August 6, 2009
I’m spooning big, fat blueberries into my mouth when Greg asks, “How are your blueberries?”
Thinking that’s a slightly odd question, I reply, “Good, thanks.”
“I’m glad you like them. I gave you all the biggest blueberries because I know how much you hate those tiny, sour ones!,” Greg says, looking at me with his own spoon filled with smaller, tarter berries.
My heart totally melts.
“You did that just for me?!,” I say with a big smile, as I feel my love for him grow 3 sizes bigger in my heart.
“Why, yes, I can’t have you sitting there with that puckered up face that makes wrinkles in the back of your head!,” Greg laughs.
Indeed, it’s true. I HATE sour berries. Sour anything really. And that Bitter Berry Face definitely doesn't make me look any prettier.
But seriously, what kind of man takes the time to lovingly select only berries that will make his partner happy!?
How thoughtful, sweet, and amazingly loving is that?!
My god, I am so lucky to have a man who loves me that much.
His simple act touches me way deep down in my soul.
I continue to learn that true love is expressed in the little things we
And I settle into the knowing that Greg has been given to me as a gift- to teach me exactly what unconditional love looks like, day in and day out.
To prove that I am learning, I save the biggest, fattest blueberry for last, reaching over to pop it into his mouth. We both savor the sweetness of our love, in action.
Readers: What tiny, thoughtful act has touched your relationship lately- making your bond immeasurably sweeter? Please share.
Tuesday, July 14, 2009
“Angels are the keepers of magic and dreams.”
Sometimes the difference between sinking and swimming is someone else’s ardent belief in you. It’s like they are holding the space for magic to happen in your life, they are keeping the vision of the dream alive for you while you’ve been off, taking a nap perhaps!
I realized the other day that Greg is just that type of Angel for me- holding the vision, sparking the magic. Not only does he do that for me personally- but he’s my biggest fan and he’s always raving about me to other people- propelling the vision forward!
He’s sort of unassuming, but he’s not shy when it comes to me- he’s my Shameless Promoter.
If he overhears someone talking about something I can help with, he tells them all about me. Hardly a week goes by when he doesn’t come home and tell me that he’s told Sally, Chris, or Harry about what I could do for them.
He does this with absolutely no prodding from me. He does this from his heart because he’s such a strong believer in me. And because he really wants to help other people.
That’s such a big gift: To have someone in your life who so whole-heartedly believes in you that they can’t help but stand on the street corner shouting out about your virtues.
With that kind of love supporting you, you’ll always be able to swim through even the toughest storms- together.
A soulmate love is one where you believe so strongly in each other, that you want to be each other’s Shameless Promoter!
Readers: Who is YOUR Shamelessly Promoting angel? Share with us how they helped you find your magic, reach your dream!
Ps. In our house almost all of us, including the dogs, cats, and horses have an angel nickname to remind us how we touch each other's soul and bring light into each other's lives! Why not honor the angel in everyone!!
Saturday, April 18, 2009
"Close your eyes, and hold out your hands," he tells me.
I comply and immediately I know what it is- almost before I start feeling the blob-y bag with my hands- without looking, of course!
It's Cadbury's Chocolate Mini-Eggs!!!!!
My all-time, very favorite chocolate!
But it's only available around Easter time. So, it's always a big deal in our house when we open up our first bag of them.
Thank god they are only temporarily available, because it's like crack to me. I almost can't stopping eating that crunchy goodness!
But that doesn't stop Greg from buying several bags at a time and stocking me up for the season. Whenever we get low, he'll bring home another couple of bags.
I'm always so touched that he remembers to look for them that time of year!
And I always feel so loved that he goes out of his way to make me squeal with delight. I'm sure the squeal and it's accompanying grin and happy dance- is it's own reward for him!
Thank you Greg, for always going out of your way to make me happy with the little things!
Readers: How does your partner make you squeal with delight & surprise? Please share!
Monday, March 30, 2009
Actually, although the distance is correct, the time is really more like 2 1/2 hours, by air. I'm currently sitting in the Kansas City "International" Airport, enjoying a frosty beverage, waiting for my flight to start boarding. I've been here the last two weeks and I'm more than ready to get back home.
As luck would have it, these weren't the best weeks to be away from Jenn. We're a little more than week in to her new membership website (http://www.mysoulmatesolution.com/) being up and running and she had a big speaking engagement last Wednesday. And I feel horrible that I haven't been there to support her in person.
A great part of our relationship is the true joy we take in each other's accomplishments. Jenn says she never sees me light up the way I do when we're celebrating one of her successes. And I'd have to agree with her.
I'm always so proud of her when she accomplishes something that she's been working hard for. Whether it's being quoted in Cosmo, being featured in 5280 (a popular local glossy magazine), appearing as an expert in MSN Dating or in Happen (Match.com's e-zine) articles, being interviewed on TV or launching a truly revolutionary dating coaching site, I take great pride in all of Jenn's successes.
Readers: How do you celebrate your partner's wins?
Tuesday, March 17, 2009
May the road rise to meet you,
Bless your love, every single day.
Tuesday, March 3, 2009
Yup, there’s no doubt about it, Ice is getting old.
There’s a hitch in his giddy-up when he runs. And he doesn’t get up and down stairs the way he used to.
In fact, there is a big step in our garage and every time he goes up it, you have to support his hind end with a little pick up. And when he goes to get up after lying down awhile, or over night, he appreciates it if you help an old man out.
Now, I think I’ve said this before. But I am not a dog person. It’s those soft, cute kitties and that purring sound that makes my heart all melty inside. And Ice is Greg’s dog.
Ice and the Beagle, they came with Greg- a package deal.
So “loving” Ice hasn’t come, shall we say, naturally. In fact, I’ll admit it.
There are times when I am self-absorbed in work, and the needs of the dogs, seem, well, annoying. “What? You need some love, RIGHT now?” Or, “Good lord, must you get outside just this minute?”
I know what you are thinking, “Thank goodness she doesn’t have kids”- and believe me, I agree.
So, it’s been interesting to note how I’ve taken to all of this “little extra care.”
Actually, I’ve been surprised to find that whenever I lift him up, I do it with, well, love. I see he needs help, and I extend myself to offer it to him.
As I place my hands under his legs, I feel it, right there, a warm bit of tender, loving care, emanating from my heart to him. I’m doing it to help. I’m doing it to make his life easier. And I’m doing it because, it’s the right thing to do, of course.
But it feels nice to offer it, to be of assistance, even in a small way. But most especially, to offer it with real love, not begrudgingly, and not just with neutrality, but with warmth in my heart. Tenderness, given without expectation of any return.
Like a tiny little gift each time, I am serving him, but there is a reward for us both.
As I’ve been pondering the WAY in which I’ve been offering assistance to Ice, it struck me that it’s the same choice we can make to help our partners, with the things that otherwise we find annoying.
Let’s take that ever increasing line of travel mugs that Greg takes to work to support his coffee habit. They have a way of piling up next to the sink, waiting for someone to take pity on them, and wash them out. I hate doing it, so I let them gather there. And Greg usually washes them.
Or the toilet bowls, which quite frankly, don’t wash themselves either. And Greg hates cleaning them, so he never does.
These are choice moments. The kind of choices that make the difference between love that lasts a lifetime and love that peters out before the 7 year itch.
Can I choose to wash his mugs or clean the toilets, with the same love in my heart that I pick up Ice with, knowing that each is like a tiny gift to Greg- something that makes his life easier?
In fact, I’ve already been doing the toilets like that. Yes! The toilets are a gift to Greg! But we can always take it a step farther…and for me, it’s those darn mugs.
I need to start picking each of those mugs up, seeing it as an opportunity to serve Greg, in a tiny, warm way. I can wash that mug with love, with tenderness in my heart, seeing it as a small offering, a small gift of assistance. Or I can continue to see each mug as an annoyance- which irritates us both.
You have that choice too! With every sock you pick up, with every meal you cook, every shirt you fold, every trash can you take out, every toothpaste cap you have to put back on.
You can turn any annoyance into a small gift, by choosing to serve in love, with warmth in your heart. All it takes is seeing it as an opportunity to give willingly to your partner, simply because it feels good to help out. And your bond is strengthened, right then and there.
That’s how love lasts a lifetime, one mug lovingly cleaned at a time, one sock tenderly picked up, one errand sweetly undertaken in higher service, not only to our partner, but to our love.
I’m glad Ice is teaching me this lesson deeply now, because I am sure that ever greater acts of kindness will be needed as he ages, as Greg and I, also grow older.
Thank you Ice for training my heart to give in service to love.
Readers: What annoyance can you shift into an opportunity to serve kindly, in love?
Monday, February 16, 2009
See, recently I learned about the concept of Power Animals.
Popular among many ancient traditional societies, including the Native American tradition, power animals are said to look after and guide us on our earthly walk.
The story goes that each of us has a power animal from the time of our birth. And from their place in the spirit realm, our power animal, also known as an animal totem, teaches and protects us.
Whether or not you believe in the literal idea of having a power animal, playing with the concept of animal-as-guide can still be a powerful experience, helping us step into our strength in times of need.
Well, needless to say, Greg, Mr. Accountant, doesn’t believe in the spiritual idea of power animals, but I had an image of him as a child with a playful dragon.
A few weeks later, we visited a gem and mineral shop and I encouraged him to select a Dragon to give him a physical reminder of his new power animal. In the picture, you can see the diminutive green dragon he chose.
Now, this is one tiny dragon, and you’d think he’d be easily lost, or soon tossed aside, amid a pile of household junk.
But, no, Greg’s been carrying his Dragon in his pants pocket. Every day to work. And sometimes even to the ski slope. And at night he carefully sits in a brass turtle in our closet, awaiting the next day’s adventure.
Sometimes, he’ll even take the Dragon out of his pocket and have me give it a little kiss.
This all warms my heart. Why?
Because he took an idea that wasn’t at all personally appealing to him and he ran with it, just because I asked him to.
Because he took the idea farther than I ever expected him to. I even sometimes get emails from "My Prince and his Dragon."
Because he’s been so loving to that tiny little stone Dragon- showing that he’s now adopted the idea of the Dragon’s worth for his own.
Sort of like a trustworthy companion, I guess.
And it all clarifies for me, that this is the beautiful give and take that makes up a wonderful love.
Readers: How has a partner inspired you to stretch, only to find a new, enjoyable part of yourself?
Friday, January 30, 2009
I never got to meet Greg’s Mom because she was killed by a drunk driver when he was 17 years old.
I’ve longed to meet her so that I could thank her for giving the gift of Greg to the world, and especially to me!
What would I thank her for exactly?
For raising a son in this culture who is:
- So generous with his time and attention to others
- So affectionate, emotionally available, and loving
- So conscientious and responsible
- So trustworthy and reliable
- So sweet and endearing
- So dependable and loyal
- So supportive and uplifting
- So willing to learn and grow
- So able to be an equal, 50-50% partner in a relationship
- So willing to go above and beyond whatever is called for
I’d give her a great big hug and tell her she must have been the best mom ever to have raised such an amazing man!
For all of these reasons and many more, I am the luckiest girl alive.
Every day I marvel at how easy and joyful love can be when you have a wonderful partner who’s a great fit for you.
From this deep gratitude grows my mission to help everyone find their own soulmate love.
I am so grateful you were born yesterday, 38 years ago.
You have been the biggest gift of my lifetime.
And I look forward to celebrating every one of your birthday’s together till we are old and grey and sitting in a porch swing, cuddled up, still so grateful for the joy our love has brought us!
You are my sun, my moon, and my stars- lighting my way with ever-lasting love.
And I love you.
Monday, January 26, 2009
Monday, January 5, 2009
It's an amazing feeling of being cherished and adored. And yes, delighted, as it tickles the inside of your heart with smiling love.
We delight in small children, we delight in pets- causing them to feel so enjoyed, so loved. We sometimes even delight in the wonders of the natural world. That comes naturally to most people.
But once we grow up- it's not often we get the gift of being truly delighted in. We forget to experience the wonder of each other.
So, to delight in your partner? Now, that's a beautiful, deep gift.
Greg has been especially loving lately.
It's not something you can fake.
It's in his warm eyes, the way he looks at me, when he tells me how much I mean to him.
It's in his broad smile, and the twinkle in his eyes, when he clearly is simply delighted by something silly I've done.
There is not enough delight in our adult life. And surely not enough delight between us adults.
So when Greg gives me the gift of being delighted in, it touches the very depths of my soul, reaffirming just how worthy I am to give and receive love.
That's what delighting in does for the receiver- it affirms your very worth.
Not that you need to know from someone else that you are worthy- because we all just ARE worthy. That's our natural state.
But the people in our lives serve as mirrors- and when that mirror shines pure delight- it's a grateful reminder that:
Yes, I am loved.
Yes, I can bring pleasure to those around me.
And yes, everything is right in the world!
That's something I didn't get enough of long ago, but when your partner offers it freely, it heals ancient wounds, bringing you back to your original state of greatness, where you can bask in the glowing light of love.
Dearest Greg, thank you so much for delighting in me. It may be one of the most precious gifts of all.
I hope you know how much delight you bring to me.
How can you, dear reader, give the gift of being delighted in to someone you love today?
Readers: Please share your own experiences of being delighted in!