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January 1, 2014

finding my way back to myself

You can now find me here, under my own name… www.mindytsonas.blogspot.com

I love new beginnings, don’t you?




October 13, 2012

shells in the bush {a giveaway}

while i was at Squam, i had the lovely opportunity to meet michelle who came all the way from australia!  her mixed media art speaks to me in the way bright colors only can, and i love the way she captures natural elements in these vibrant jewel toned splashes. not only is her art amazing, her kind spirit was just as lovely as she gifted each of us in the class one of her gorgeous art necklaces!  while i absolutely adore this sweet little birdie, i feel compelled to pay this kind act forward and pass on this special treat from all the way from down under.

thank you, michelle for sharing your generous art and soul. i know the lucky winner of this token will indeed feel it too.

to enter, leave a comment on this post or on the facebook page.  you’ll have til’ tuesday when i will draw one lucky name as the winner, before the day is over.  good luck!  and please do stop by to shower a little love on sweet aussie michelle.




October 11, 2012

A Wishful Year :: October {gather}

{Sweet Retreat, Duxbury MA}

this time of year, we are all thinking about gathering.  we might gather together in cozy groups of family and friends, or we might gather in tribes of like-minded souls.  where we all are a bit internet weary these days the steady, organic pull towards soul-filled and in-person connections is a trend that is becoming so important, if not absolutely necessary.  i feel deeply in my own life the desire to sit in tight circles of kindred women, to stoke the fires of community and come together for the common purpose of simply sharing a moment together, face to face.  there is something so nurturing, grounding, and inspiring about the alchemy that happens when we arrive and revel in a shared experience of togetherness… yes.

your Wishful Living Mission:  create a get-together, gather your near and dears (even if just one or two), and lean in, laugh, listen, celebrate and share with one another a big juicy slice of life!  one of my favorite things to do is to create a memorable experience for people whether it’s over a simple but good cup of coffee, or complete with handmade decor, goodie bags, and an abundant spread of delicious food, you can make the time together meaningful and special.  here a few yummy and gorgeous reads to help inspire your upcoming gathering:

* Kinfolk Magazine
* Mingle Magazine by Somerset Studios
* Great Get-Togethers by Anna and Lizzie Post
* Great Parties by Martha Stewart
* Naturally Fun Parties for Kids by Anni Daulter with Heather Fontenot

just remember to add your own simple touches.  share what is uniquely you.  that is, after all, what those who gather around you truly love!




September 26, 2012

Happier at Home by Gretchen Rubin {a rave review}

Kiss More, Jump More, Abandon a Project,
Read Samuel Johnson, and My Other Experiments
in the Practice of Everyday Life


oh, Gretchen, you had me at Happier.

not only is this second installment by our seasoned happiness connoisseur and best selling author of The Happiness Project filled with so much honesty and wisdom, Gretchen Rubin is just so masterful at finding that perfect blend of personal storyteller and practical insight that it makes you feel like you’re sitting in her living room, sipping a cup of tea while being captivated by her musings.  this book truly elevates the ordinary and takes you on a nine month inner and outer excavation into unearthing what ‘home’ really means.

using the framework of the intuitive ‘new year’, Gretchen begins her exploration in september with 9 monthly, multifaceted touch stones of what one might consider fundamental elements as part of the idea of home: Possessions, Marriage, Parenthood, Interior Design, Time, Body, Family, Neighborhood, and Now.  you could sit and read this book deliciously, cover to cover, or simply open up to the one chapter that is calling your attention most at any given moment, and i loved that about Happier at Home.

what struck me too was the overarching theme of how who we are as individuals influences every aspect of what creates our home life, and how our inner world is so connected to our external relationships to things and other people in our lives.  Gretchen also inspires and reminds us how to be active participants in our own happiness equation, no matter the time or place. from the importance of taking time to organize family photos, to analyzing which of our things burden us or give us joy, to giving gold stars and affirming our partners, and always using kindness to interact with our neighbors, we find that truly it is the smaller acknowledgements that make a difference in our overall happiness.

while i don’t wish to give away any of this beautiful narrative, which you surly should read on your own to discover your own happiness gems, i will say that you’ll absolutely come away with many thoughtful inquiries and new perspectives and tools with which to interact a little more mindfully and blissfully within your own version of  ‘home’.

meet Gretchen at a book store near you, and help celebrate her newest joy-filled edition to the happiness family!

you can watch her inspiring book trailer, here for 10 tips on how to be Happier at Home!




September 23, 2012

the art of goodie bag love {a lesson i learned from my mother}

giving is all about receiving.

i love how moments pop up in our lives and bubble to the surface memories and truth buried deep like hidden treasure. my son’s first sleepover last night was one of those moments.  it shook loose a whole tumble of memories and sensations that had been long forgotten.

i was out early yesterday morning running around doing last minute shopping for birthday goodie bags, and i was happily surprised to stumble across sweet thoughts of my own first sleepover party in 6th grade while wandering the isles buying fun boyish little trinkets.  my mom and i went shopping together to get all sorts of girly things to make swag bags, each a different theme (bath and body, stationary, make up, etc…) to give for the occasion, and it’s one of those memories that seemed special to me at the time but only with time and age has ripened to have a deeper meaning and sweetness re-emerging on my own path of motherhood.

i learned the art of the goodie bag that year from my mom, and with it, the secret, soulful language of nurturing and love that went into creating such thoughtful little mementos.  it felt so very extravagant i recall, carefully choosing each item for each bag, and i remember feelings of honor and joy in the excited anticipation of giving these gifts, and appreciation too of my mother for allowing me to create this kind of offering for my friends.  i will never forget the thrill of seeing all the girls delight in all the abundance of treasures they were gifted by me and my mom.

priceless.

i saw this with my son last night too… the wonder and joy of giving his friends good swag because it means we care about them, we’re happy they came to honor and celebrate a special moment in our lives, and because they each deserve to be honored in their own way too.  big joy comes in small packages, and it isn’t really about the stuff, it’s about the memory of having “the best sleepover party ever!” and sharing the bounty of happiness and love.

i had many more memorable parties in my younger years, each with unique little touches we always thought to add to make the events special and our own.  this i realize is my mom’s superpower, to bring people together and make them feel special and loved, to create sacred space for laughter and happy memories and experiences.  if you asked her, she would tell you that she doesn’t have a creative bone in her body, but truthfully she creates togetherness deeply rooted in meaning and love. i realized last night for the first time that i have that gift too, and i learned it from my mother.

 




September 17, 2012

truly madly deeply :: postcards from Squam

{our dock}

{the fabulous miss kelly barton}

{process gallery in the dining hall}

{welcome}

{wish bomb}

{gathering}

{sweet moment with nina beana}

{love and mother nature}

{my roomie and special squam fairy}

{i made this}

{art fair night}

{deeply seeing myself}

* i spent most of my time by the lake capturing this experience with my heart and not my camera, but here are a few sweet moments. more thoughts as i digest it all, coming soon…




September 12, 2012

going to squam {learning to inhabit my life}

{I LOVE U}

truth:  i have been drafting the cancellation letter in my head for days now.

truth:  i have a list five thousand miles long why i can’t/shouldn’t/don’t really deserve to go to Squam after all (and, really,  what was i possibly thinking?)

truth: alongside this list i have been dreaming about pine trees, deciding what supplies to bring, what gifts to make, making note of the weather and forecast, and packing in my head.

truth:  i am in a place where i am not at my best, a bit under the weather (was in the ER the other night for what turns out is probably a very long-lasting and intense migraine) and have been feeling a bit emotionally run down and fragile.

truth: i’m terrified i will go and i will feel out of place, ridiculously awkward, inadequate, alone, and it will just completely shatter me.

truth:  i’m terrified it will be a beautiful gift, the time of my life, crack me wide open, and be the jolt i need right now to bring me back to the center of myself.


how apropos that i ran across michelle’s post yesterday, mirroring my exact feelings as i quietly waded around this virtual world.  how can it be that i have been dreaming of attending this event for 5 years and on the cusp of diving in i am feeling so afraid?  i have many friends going, a whole tribe there in fact, so it’s not like i’ll (really) be alone, not to mention the unbelievable serendipity and grace of this beautiful soul, my roommate and co-inspirer extraordinaire, as well as the ever-kind Squam Fairies who held space for me with such hope and tenderness through a very tough season of unknowns and my dad fighting for his life.

i have watched the last four retreats unfold replete with all the stories and chatter, gorgeous images and life-changing revelations, so awe-inspired and with such great longing wondering if i might ever get my turn… and here it is, a gift given to me by my whole family for my 40th birthday last winter.  who knew that wanting it was only the first step?  the wishing is always the easiest part.

now that the wish has manifested itself, going to Squam i realize is one of those big dreams that requires something more of me.

i have to show up.

not just pack my suitcase and get in my car and drive there, i have to inhabit my being in a way that truthfully is not always all that easy.  i have to conquer fear and insecurity. i have to let go of expectations. i have to open up to possibility. i have to embrace imperfection.  i have to be kind to myself. i have to meet myself in truth exactly where i am, and right in this moment that happens to be in a bit of a rough spot.

but this is the work of our lives, no?  to exist in this open-armed space where we are ripe for whatever awaits, where dreams come true, where lightening strikes, where old stories get re-written, where hurts get healed, where we find an important piece of the puzzle, where we might find the end of one rainbow and the beginning of the next.

am i terrified?  absolutely.

am i more afraid that i would regret for the rest of my life, not unwrapping this gift that sits squarely in front of me? most definitely.

so off i go… into the wild unknown, to sit by the lake and commune with my Life.

gratitude and blessings abound.

 




September 4, 2012

the first day of school {a note for your lunchbox}

“The whole purpose of education is to turn mirrors into windows.”  ~ Sydney J. Harris




September 1, 2012

A Wishful Year :: September {learn}

september is the second ‘new year’ and the one i really look forward to the most.  heading into the brand new school year is always filled with fresh promises of new discoveries and lessons to learn, untold stories, and adventures in falling in love with autumn, my favorite time of year.  with two boys heading off to school this time around, one going into 4th grade and the other into preschool, my world is completely immersed in getting ready to make this big shift back into reading, writing, and arithmetic.

we are ripe for learning.

it’s not just our lessons in traditional academics, though we will be learning our multiplication tables and practicing our sharing in earnest this season, but also what life will teach us along the way in all the in-betweens.  the lessons there are almost always the greatest.  this season seems to be heavily focused on the new, a new teacher for my oldest after two years in the same class, a new experience for my youngest as he tries out his little preschool wings, a fresh new space for my husband’s school after lots of renovations over the summer, and my first trip to Squam sitting shiny on my horizon!

right off the bat, i am figuring out what i need to ground myself for all there is to come.  i have learned over this past year that my biggest areas of need are in defining my own schedule and routine, having enough personal support for my own work and well being, and investing the time to plan and create a solid container for my life and goals which need to be a bit further reaching and long-term (planning for the more spontaneous minded is always a challenge), so i am finding ways to create guideposts and resources that also are flexible.

learning is an exciting part of the process and can be both fun and hard work.  it is when i seem to be the happiest – when there is forward momentum with that wonderful synergy of effort and growth.

so embrace all there is to learn this month, and stay here in the Wishstudio for tips, tricks and truths as we wander into this shiny new year!

 

 




August 29, 2012

the lense with which we see the world…


“You don’t see the world as it is.  You see the world as you are.” ` anais nin




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