Let there be more LOVE

I will be the first to admit that I struggle with depressing or sad news. I know that life can be tough however that without great lows, the highs are not nearly as delicious to savour. And trust me when I say that I openly, deliriously relish those fabulous moments of an entire universe aligning and I equally allow myself some moments in the wallow when needed. What really brings me to my feet, shouting YES.. is when I read or hear people demonstrating LOVE, performing random acts of kindness; both small and almost imperceivably and large and magnanimous and just bringing their light to the world.

It’s the light that begs to be let out that led to the creation of my gratitude card; somewhere buried deep was an idea that I could inspire others through their creation. And when the light was so bright I couldn’t ignore it anymore, out they came.

Throughout the nearly 5 years that they have been on the planet, our decks have helped comfort, inspire, motivate, delight and affirm to those that have used them in their practice. It has delighted me to hear stories from people as to how they chose to use our decks and I want to share a few stories with you here.

“A while ago my friend posted that a friend of his was giving away a hundred decks of Gratitude and Soulshine cards for the simple cost of shipping and handling. I signed up and got one of the give-aways. The cards were created by Dana Tremblay and they are amazing. I have been keeping a gratitude journal for years and I give thanks regularly for all of the blessings in my life and I meditate in gratitude as well, so I was interested in the cards, but not sure what I would get out of them.

However, when I got the cards, I realized they were AMAZING and I love them. The gratitude saying invite you to think and reflect on what you appreciate, what you are grateful for, and what you are thankful for, and how you will show gratitude throughout the day, for yourself, and for others. The deck also comes with a few blank cards so you can create your own.

The sayings are perfect to put you in a place of peace and serenity, they help you to reflect, and achieve inner peace. I use them just before journaling to get centered, I use them to help inspire me for blogging, and I use them for meditating and quieting my mind.

Dana’s website is wonderful and shows examples of the cards…they are truly worth having if you are interested in brings inner peace and serenity into your life. http://www.livegrateful.ca

http://zulmaramaria.com/

 

I'm a life coach and my focus is on helping clients to better connect with themselves through journaling.  In addition to being a coach, I also am a journal artist and make the journals that I use with my clients and groups.

I truly believe that gratitude is the foundation for our lives.  It centers our thoughts and helps to guide us through life's transitions.  I am creating a gratitude box that includes a journal and gratitude related activities.  I thought it would be wonderful to include a deck of gratitude cards in the box as well.  I will use the box with groups that I facilitate but they will also be available for purchase on my website.  My primary audience is women ages 35 to 65 that are experiencing transition in their lives whether it be having their first child, changing jobs, pursuing their passions or becoming empty nesters.   By the way, I love your video.”

In addition to our decks supporting a gratitude practice and coaches around the world, people also find ways to use them at work.

“Thank YOU for creating your gratitude decks; they really are a fabulous reminder to live a grateful life. A year ago my sister purchased this deck of cards for me while I was going through a rough period in my life. I continue to use them daily, as they are such a gentle reminder to take time to really relish the things that we often get too busy to notice. I love your cards and share many of the thoughts with others throughout my days. Today two ladies I work with are both having difficult times and so I went buy them each a deck. The stores I thought might have your cards didn't have them which led me to your site. Please know that the third free deck that comes with my order will be kept for just that right person at the just the right time! Thanks for helping me make gratitude a part of my daily meditation!

“I work in a large, urban school district in Mardland and our administration is going through some major changes. Two of our senior leaders who have been with us for over 20 years each are both retiring this year. Our staff is of course both sad to be losing such great colleagues and leaders, but also equally as worried about what the future holds. Your decks are our way of brining cohesion, calm and most of all, a strong focus on gratitude to our team. Thank you for this gift of your soul.”

Director of Diversity

Baltimore, Maryland School District

Whatever your situation might be, it can be supported through a strong, heart centered gratitude practice. And we can help.

Now for the rest of the year, we have an amazing deal. For the first time ever, we are offering these decks at the lowest price ever! If you purchase over 10 decks, the cost is ONLY $9 a deck!

Buy them as gifts for co-workers, your yoga class, your teachers, preachers and friends. With every deck we sell for the rest of the year, we will also donate one deck to a local Women’s shelter to help support women fleeing domestic abuse.

Let’s prove that LOVE IS LOVE and spread some gratitude is a world that has recently lost a bit of its shine.  

 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UVS46NRkYoQ&t=6s

LIVE GRATEFUL

 

 

The power of a good wallowing

For many of my friends, 2016 seems to be a year of transformation. Now that can probably be said for most years, however this year seems to be bringing out all of the BIG life moments for so many in my tribe. Divorce, moving, aging or dying parents, job loss - all coming in waves across many my age.

When this happens, many people like to bring up the positive affirmations "Change is good!" "When a door closes, another one opens!" "Look for the silver lining!" and while all of those hold some kernels of truth, they are far from telling the entire story. Simply put, sometimes change sucks. It can be overwhelming and profound and just plain shitty.

I am a firm believer in the power of positive thinking, however I am equally as passionate about the hidden strength in the momentary wallow. When those feelings of despair, grief, anger and frustration come; and they will; allow them their time and space. Put your rubber boots on and wallow in them. Scream to the wind, throw pillows in your empty room, curl up in the fetal position on your closet floor - HONOUR the pain. There is however a very important caveat to mention here.

Do not get stuck in the wallow.

Don't pitch a tent and live there or wear it like a badge of honour. Let the pain come and allow yourself time to truly feel it; then thank it and let it pass.

It seems to me that too many of us spend far too much time afraid of the depths that we can go; and I know that is can be scary. However if you keep trying to minimize the experience instead of fully living it, it won't pass simply because you are not done. You need to be so terribly sad that when bliss and joy come back, you are fully present.

There is no badge, no "win" for always walking around with a smile, particularly when it isn't heartfelt. Be where you need to be at this moment; with your sights set and a deep sense of knowing that you are going somewhere better.

And then maybe, just maybe, someday soon you will look back at the journey and be so very grateful that was your path. Then you can take off your rubber boots and put them away until the next time. You made it.

My heart is full

I know as far as the rules go around how one is supposed to "blog" properly; well I am not doing such a good job at following those rules. I want what I say to have meaning and purpose behind it and come from a place where I feel the message needs to be shared and today, I have one of those messages. 

In November I shared with the community that I would be doing outreach and gifting decks to organizations that serve others and I am happy to say that I have been humbled by some of the teams that use our decks to not only support their clients; but their teams as well. Our decks are being used in hospices, for therapy with abused children, with mental health workers and numerous other community partners. THIS is why these decks were born, to support those in need of a soul hug and it is such an amazing thing to see them serve their purpose. 

It isn't just organizations that use our decks and sometimes I get the BEST emails that lift my heart. Here is one I would like to share with you all. 

 "A year ago my sister purchased this deck of cards for me while I was going through a rough period in my life. I continue to use them daily, as they are such a gentle reminder to take time to really relish the things that we often get too busy to notice. I love your cards and share many of the thoughts with others throughout my days.

Today two ladies I work with are both having difficult times and so I went buy them each a deck. The stores I thought might have your cards didn't have them which led me to your site. Please know that the third free deck that comes with my order will be kept for just that right person at the just the right time! Thanks for helping me make gratitude a part of my daily meditation!" Comena - Saskatchewan

This is the intention I had behind these decks; that they would help a person and then that person would start a gratitude wave and support others. That is the true blessing of gratitude, you can be a carrier and spread it everywhere. 

Comena, your comment made our week here and your new decks are sent with love and wishes of happiness and peace. 

Check us out on our shopping page. Our favourite is "buy 2 get one free". Spread the gratitude in your community and let's make this world a little brighter together. Live Grateful!!

 

 

The world needs this more than anything right now

Watching the news has never been a top priority for me as I often feel as though there is so little reported that lifts my soul; and never has that been more true that in recent days. Some of the senseless acts of violence and inhumanity have apparently cast a shadow over me, rendering me a little lost and dazed. I keep thinking that my contribution cannot possibly start to move the needle towards goodness and universal love. 

So with that shadowed heart last week I headed west to the mountains for a few days of soulful contemplation and reflection. My goal really was to seek some clarity around mission; what and how can I be of service. During this time, I had an opportunity to do some energy work with a lovely dweller of the valley who turned on a very bright light bulb for me. In the course of our conversation, she used this expression a few times:

"The universe is ready and willing to accept your unique contributions and medicine." 

Now at the time it was only the flickering as with many great ideas, it needed some time to bake. It was only yesterday after returning home that this started to bounce around and around in my head - getting louder with each successive pass. My medicine, the most powerful and concrete offering I have, is sharing my gratitude cards as a tool of healing and hope with those that need it most.  Random people have been leaving me more messages on my Facebook page, clients are sending me little notes of appreciation, some are posting their card of the day highlighting how they are resonating.. ALL of this in a crazy ramped up frequency soup in the last week or so. It was a subtle whisper from the universe that I almost hummed right over and then, it settled loud and clear. My decks need to be DOING more, SERVING more, HEALING more for they are soul medicine and they are needed.  

And this is where you come into play my wonderful community. HELP me get my decks where they are more needed. I am putting my decks on sale for the next month in the hope that we get 500 out to the world - bringing MORE light. For the next month, a portion of the proceeds will be donated 2 o 5 X 5: Sponsoring Refugee Families - a local movement of support to provide winter clothing for those Syrian families that find their way here. 

Please share this post and help us spread our medicine. The decks can be used as Christmas gifts for clients, friends, support workers - any one whose soul is in need of a hug. Let's all find a way to use our individual medicine to heal together.

 

 

 

Look a little closer

This past year has been one filled with change, challenge and at times confusion.  Some of the changes were subtle; a shift in duties with a volunteer group, a new hair dresser, starting to wear more dresses -  and some of them were profound; a new job after almost 2 decades and most of all -my daughter moving away for university. 

It seemed to all be so natural and matter of fact that that I told myself I was adapting just fine to all the change and after all, I was the kind of person who LIKED change and invited in the new and exciting.  In many regards, that is all true. The one change I made however that has recently come to light as having a far more profound affect on me than I would have ever imagined, was my decision to shelf my gratitude cards, the daily posts... the running of the business of gratitude and soulshine.  The decision itself was based in logic; at least I felt it to be a logical decision at the time. I started a new job in February, one that involved my full attention, some travel and a lot of learning. My previous life balance of fitting my life in around my job was thrown off kilter and so to become immersed in that new role, I decided that the old one wouldn't fit.

It turns out that I was wrong. How could I possibly believe that I did not have time, space or the energy for GRATITUDE??? When I put it that way, I shake my head in amazement for my short sightedness. What I should have done (although I try really hard not to "should" on myself) was to ramp up the gratitude love to ensure I was being as supportive of myself as possible and gifting myself with a daily soul hug. The outcome of this removal of being present and in gratitude was almost well, devastating. I found myself being sad more often, wanting to withdraw from some daily activities and having low energy that kept me stuck. Sigh. It just wasn't me. 

Out of the inertia I reached out to a friend who has always been a beacon of light for me and asked for her time and wisdom. While we sat and shared and cried and laughed and contemplated, I was struck by this thought: "WHY am I pushing myself away from gratitude?"

I have this beautiful deck of cards that came to me for a reason; and many of you know I say that they are not OF me but THROUGH me as really and truly they were a gift; and yet I was not allowing myself the gift of daily gratitude.  Sure, from time to time I sold some decks and spoke to some of my partners and supporters, but I wasn't in it. I wasn't making it a conscious decision day in and day out to be in gratitude. 

Shame on me. Shame on any of us really for not being as close to our true selves as we can be because we think there isn't time, or maybe the acceptance we crave, to be able to spend our time in a manner that feeds not only our own soul but one that lights up others.  Really, isn't that what we are all here for anyway? To love one another, to share our gifts with one another at times being the hand up and at other times, loving accepting the hand we are offered. 

Cheryl Richardson - who I adore!! and you should check out if you don't already know her (www.cherylrichardson.com) had this quote up the other day on facebook that really resonated with me: "Stop trying to control your life. It gets in the way of Divine Intervention."  Here I was thinking I was managing this change and my new roles and responsibilities but what I was really doing was blocking myself from being in the flow.

Well no more I say. For my health I need to be in gratitude; literally.  When I share with the community we have grown, I become more aware of the blessings around me and the gift that my life is and most importantly (and I don't say this lightly) that gift that I AM. 

Today is a good day to look a little closer, is there something in your life that is rrriiiggghthhhttt there and yet you fail to see it? What simple, subtle, gentle shift can you make to open yourself up to Divine Intervention?  

For me, each day will start with one of my divinely gifted cards to centre myself around grateful thoughts.  I will share with you what sweet ways the world opens up to me on this journey.  One thing I know for sure, I am open and out of my own way. So bring it. 

 

 

Blessings of Mom

Blessings of Mom

This morning I awoke to the clang of pots as my husband was busy creating a lovely Mother’s day breakfast for me. I thought back to my early days as a mother when the day started with peanut butter toast and orange juice, little bodies jumping on the bed and those magical arts and crafts gifts that were made with tissue paper, glue, crayons and love. Now, my mother moments are just as precious, even if...

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