What Is Your Passion?

camera marine hospitalAnother way to practice self-care is to find time to pursue your passions.  Our lives can get very hectic, with people pulling at us from every direction.  Many times our own passions and interest are the first things that get cut from our overbooked schedules.  This can leave you feeling resentful towards the very people you love and care for.  Over time this can cause you to lose your joy and zest for life.  It seems like a quick and easy fix at the time, but it actually is an expensive one in the long run.  Just like with routines, continuing to pursue your interest during the busy seasons of your life doesn’t have to take a lot of time, just a little planning, determination, and belief that you are worth it.  Maybe you,

  • Join a book club at your local library
  • Take an online class through Skill Share
  • Find an outside walking trail and start collecting leaves…bring them home and press them old school style between wax paper.
  • Pick up a book to help you identify the leaves
  • Pick up a camera and begin to notice your world in a different way
  • Take part of a Saturday and explore an art museum in your area
  • Buy an inexpensive set of calligraphy pens and check some books out of the library on hand lettering
  • Start a journal…with a little washi tape and some pictures and memorabilia you have a scrapbook!!
  •  Find a YouTube video and learn how to crochet, knit, embroidery, cook, make soap, raise chickens, build birdhouses…you get the idea!

And maybe it’s been so long since you allowed yourself to think about what you are passionate about that you have no idea where to start.  That’s ok too. Sit down and make a list of anything you have ever been remotely interested in learning about.    Pick something from the list to explore weekly, and if it doesn’t interest you move to the next item.  I can promise you will eventually find something that will inspire you.  And remember…YOU ARE WORTH IT!!!

The Outings Project Comes to Memphis

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Julien de Casabianca has given Memphis something to talk about, and thankfully in a good way!  Known as the “Robin Hood of Street Art” he has taken his Outings Project to over 50 cities worldwide.  With filmmaker and artist in his title, Mr. de Casabianca has brought the community together with his beautiful wheat paste murals found in various sizes and locations around town.  The purpose of the project is simple, take these classic works of art off of museum walls and into the community where they will reach a wider audience and spark conversations that will last long after the murals are gone.

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Pellegrino di Mariano Rossini’s Madonna and Child with Saint John the Baptist and Saint.

The Outings Project is truly a community program.  The artist visited Memphis earlier in the year and met with people in the community from all walks of life to chose the 21 characters to “free” from the paintings and bring to life on buildings, signpost, and doorways around the city.  The result has been spectacular!

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La Femme en very (The Woman in Green)by Leon Bonhomme  

From beautiful Renaissance works such as this 6 story beauty located on E. H Crump Blvd:

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Painted by William-Adolphe Bouguereau in 1886,  At the Foot of the Cliff.

To Memphis’ own Carroll Cloar;

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And everything in between!

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Wilford Conrow Maser-El-Din Hoja

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Reading by the Brook by Winslow Homer

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Gladys by Abbott H Thayer

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Cori With Cat painted by Robert Henri

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Portrait of Bessie Vance by Katherine Augusta Carl

There are 21 of these beauties located all around town.  And all of them are in the permanent collection at Brooks Art Gallery in Memphis, so you can see the mural and then go see the original work of art!  Thank you Julien de Casabianca for bringing this amazing opportunity to Memphis!

Routines As a Form of Self Care

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I feel that routines can be a daily form of self-care in our hectic lives.  Children receive much comfort and security in knowing what comes next in their daily lives.  If we are honest, adults aren’t any different in this regard.  And while I realize that routine isn’t always possible in our everyday life, it is something we can strive for.  Begin with your morning and evening routine.  At the beginning of the year, I made it a goal to get up an hour before my children do.  While I haven’t been successful every single day, I have had more successful days than not and I celebrate that victory(extending grace to yourself is an important part of self-care too!)!  I have found that this time in the morning is a very important part in how my day unfolds. And it doesn’t have to be anything elaborate or time-consuming.  My ideal morning routine consists of drinking a mug of warm lemon water, having some time to read, journal and pray and having some time on my yoga mat to stretch and do a short yoga routine.  It’s completed in under 45 minutes and,  in my opinion, is the most important part of my day.  after investing in myself and taking the time to fill my cup back up, I am ensuring that I have something to give to others.  My evening routine consists of putting the house to bed (general pick up and put away), putting the children to bed,  then some personal time.  Most nights that means a hot bath, some chamomile tea, journaling, and reading.  I try to keep electronics out of the bedroom during this time, and again, celebrate the victories instead of beating myself up when life gets hectic.  Self-care doesn’t have to be time-consuming or expensive.  It just takes a little discipline, a bit of planning, and a belief that you are worth it…because you know what? You ARE!!

Revitalize and Renovate

fullsizeoutput_27eThe word repurpose and renovate have become buzz words in our community.  After years of operating under the philosophy of new and modern is the only way to go, builders and developers are finally starting to see that repurposing and re-imagining a space has its place in growth as well.  We have seen this play out several times in recent years around our city. Sears Crosstown being one of the best examples, a crowing jewel in Memphis architecture and real estate.  We have another chance to save a beautiful building with a rich history.

 The William C. Ellis & Sons Ironworks and Machine Shop located at 241-245 S. Front opened in 1862.  When it closed in December of 2016, it had earned a place in Memphis history as the longest running family owned business in a single location.  It was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1983.  Before closing it’s doors in 2016, a deal was brokered with the Carlisle Group who purchased the 137 year old property with plans to move forward on it’s “One Beale” development. It was rumored the building was to be demolished to make room for new luxury high-rises and a parking garage.  But Chase Carlisle listened to the pleas from Memphis Heritage, a non-profit that works to maintain architecturally and historically significant buildings in the Mid-South area.

Last Thursday night, Memphis Heritage hosted a tour and informative meeting inside the beautiful William C. Ellis & Sons Ironwork and Machine Shop. After touring the three buildings, those in attendance heard Chance Carlisle share his vision for this historic property. A032E3BE-4112-4A76-A5B6-B8F2360F4580The building above  with its gorgeous view of the Mississippi River and the iconic Hernando Desoto Bridge is slated to become a ballroom and event venue. With its high ceilings and beautiful brick archway, this will be an excellent addition to the Memphis downtown.4722762B-C81F-49D6-8E6C-1D2C303BDCF1 ThIs building is the original foundry storage building and is being discussed as being used for an upscale tavern/ whiskey tasking. The largest of the buildings, the machine shop, and garage that face Front Street(the first picture in this post) is being discussed for an open and airy conference room. By re-imagining this property and listening to suggestions from Memphians who loved this building and desired to see its rich history preserved, Carlisle LLC has joined the Memphis renovation revolution.

Is Self Care Selfish?

fullsizeoutput_484As women, we are taught at an early age that we are the caretakers and nurturers of others.  And that is a beautiful job, one that I take seriously and feel honored to do.  But to keep pouring out into and for others, we have to remember to refill our own cup.  If you have ever traveled on an airplane, the following sentence should be a familiar one; “In case of emergency, air masks will drop from the ceiling.  If you are traveling with a minor, please put on your own mask before helping the minor”; but how many times do we really follow these directions in our daily lives?  When life gets hectic, your to-do list is never ending, your calendar is jam-packed, and you feel like you are pleasing no one, who is the first person to get pushed to the back burner?  If you are anything like me, that person is the one that actually needs the most self-love and grace, that person is yourself. While self-care may seem indulgent and a luxury we can not afford, it is actually crucial to your physical, emotional, mental and spiritual well-being. And honestly it doesn’t have to cost anything.  However, one very important thing to remember about self care is that it is a practice, it isn’t something you just do once.  By making it a part of your routine you are sending a message to yourself and others; that message is “I am worth it.  I believe in myself enough to make myself a priority.”  The benefits of self care are amazing:

  • Reduce the negative affects of stress
  • Your relationships will flourish
  • You begin to appreciate and notice the small things
  • Your physical health will improve
  • Your emotional health will improve
  • Your spiritual health will improve (do you see a pattern here?

This is just a very small sampling of the benefits.  If you begin to practice self care I can guarantee you will add more to this list each time you take the time to make yourself a priority.  In the coming days I will be giving you some suggestions of how to make self care  part of your routine and not just something you dream about doing someday….I think you will be surprised at how little time and money it will take…and remember YOU ARE WORTH IT!!!!

The Rebirth of Crosstown

Did you know that over the past 4 years Memphis has completed over 250 revitalization projects?? Just in the last few years we have seen The 19th Century Club, The Tennessee Brewery, The Chisca Hotel and Clayborn Temple all saved from demolition and repurposed. But my personal favorite revitalization and repurposing story happened just last year. Crosstown Concourse,or what we lifelong Memphians will always call it, Sears Crosstown. Built in only 180 days, Sears Crosstown opened August 27, 1927. At over 650,000 square feet this building was the largest building in Memphis to date. More than 1,000 people were employed to staff the retail store and process the 45,000 orders that came into the catalog center every day! At its peak it had an in-house hospital! As times changed,however, the way people shopped also changed. The retail store closed in 1983 and the catalog distribution center closed in 1993. After sitting vacant for more than 20 years, work began in 2014 to give this beautiful building a new lease on life. In 2017 the building reopened and has since won numerous architectural awards. There are restaurants, retail, businesses, a brewery, movie theater, soon to be high school, apartments…you get the picture…there is A LOT to do within these walls!! Scattered throughout the building are historical pictures and items salvaged during the renovations. It is a beautiful story of a city loving a building back to life…read more in the link below and put it on your list of things to explore in Memphis!!
http://crosstownconcourse.com/

Court Square Fountain

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Hebe Fountain in court square was funded through donations from several of the cities most prominent citizens and was dedicated on May 27, 1876, in observance of the nations Centennial. The sculpture weighs in at 7,000 pounds and stands approximately 20 feet high. It is named after the Greek mythological figure Hebe who was a cupbearer to the gods. It was toppled during strong winds in 1942 and due to the expense and rigors of World War II was placed in storage until it could be repaired and reerected in 1949. It still stands proudly in court square and is a beautiful part of downtown history.

Persevere

37199423_10212282213031226_6766893989015584768_nSometimes things come out of what seems to be nowhere…and kinda sucker punches you right in the gut…and it takes your breath away…and maybe you even feel disoriented, defeated,lost and alone. But then you realize your in the palm of His hand…and nothing takes Him by surprise and everything that touches your life is Father filtered. And you aren’t called to understand, or make sense of it..,you are simply called to stand tall and and keep your eyes forward not backwards at what has happened, or sideways at how others are standing or down in defeat or inward in bitterness but forward at the Son….because at the end of the day The greatest of these is love…and love ALWAYS works…maybe not in our time…or the way we think it should…or in a way we understand…but it works…Every. Single. Time. Amen.

I Believe In You

37863573_10212352235621747_8658021076455915520_nA very personal post today with a lot of words, so you have been warned.  The picture on the left was taken May 11st, 2012, the day I entered Lakeside. The picture on the right was taken on July 23rd, 2018. I don’t even recognize the person on the left anymore. But I keep the bracelet to remind me how far I have come. There are so many people walking around out there that feel like I did in that picture on the left, defeated, hopeless and broken beyond repair. The night before this picture was taken I had taken an entire bottle of sleeping pills in hopes of ending the horrible pain I felt inside. But God has other plans. And I am so thankful He did. I am posting this because I know there are people who feel like I did in the picture on the left. And they are real feelings. And they can consume you and make you feel like there is no way out from the blackness you feel. I understand those feelings but I can promise you there is a better way. It won’t be easy…as a matter of fact, it may be the hardest thing you have ever done. I know it was for me. And there will still be dark moments. But you are stronger than the moments, because you are a mighty warrior. And I believe in you. And so do a lot of other people. You feel isolated and alone right now, but the simple act of seeking help will show you what an amazing support group you have. Because you are an amazing person created by an amazing God. There are many people out there who have walked this same journey you are on. Reach out to someone and let them walk beside you. I would love to be that someone for you. Because I believe in you.

 

The House That Built Me

Dear Little White House on Arthur Road,

Thank you. Thank you for making us feel welcome the first time we walked through your cheerful red door. Thank you for loving us when we weren’t really lovable…when we yelled at each other…when we slammed doors and closed hearts….when we cried tears of frustration and fear and hurt….your comforting walls always brought us back together again….maybe a little scared up from battle, but wiser…thank you for that. Thank you for helping us see that we were still a family…because families come in all shapes and sizes. Thank you for showing me that starting over is scary and hard, but doable and that I was very much up for the job. Thank you for teaching me that a home is the people, not the place. We have celebrated birthdays, and Christmas and the first day of school and the last days of school…and hundreds of everyday kind of days thrown in between…and those are wonderful gifts. Thank you for showing us just how blessed we are by the wonderful friends that have passed through your door….and all the love we have been shown while living here. Thank you for providing a place of refuge….of safety and security. No matter how bad it was storming outside your walls, I always knew I could come in and lock the doors and I would be safe. When I found out we would have to leave you, I felt like a part of my heart was dying. I felt like I just didn’t have it in me to start over again….I was tired. I thought I would never feel safe or secure again. But I was wrong. You see, I thought I felt brave because of you….which was silly because when you truly love someone you don’t want them to depend on you for their strength and courage…you want to help them see, no matter how painfully hard at the time, that they are strong enough….and I know you have loved us these last two years. And now I know….it’s not your four walls that make me brave….no, it’s because at some point, during these last two years, I BECAME brave. Thank you for that.

Love
Kelly, Caleb, Hannah Beth, Colton, and ZooeyIMG_1892