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April 2019

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This water stinks!  Oh, this is horrible.  I can't stand the stench!  These were all the thoughts flowing through my mind as water rained down on my head.

For months the water at our lake house smelled bad. We'd called an expert to help and he told us the problem was most likely a corroded anode rod in the hot water heater and once replaced, the smell would go away.

As I stood complaining, I stopped myself and thought about a post my friend, Temwani, from Malawi, Africa made.  She is currently in the US and said, "No walking to get water, a very good place to sleep and good food. The world is so different."

I had no business complaining.  And I immediately gave thanks.

  • Even though smelly, I'm grateful for inside plumping and access to water at the turn of a knob.
  • I'm grateful for a hot water heater and the money to repair it when it breaks.
  • Homemade specialty soaps, shampoo and conditioner that lined the shower ledge, cleaned me and I'm grateful.

I kid you not, the pungent odor dissipated. I'm sure the water still smelled but my focused changed. And later that day when my husband changed the anode road we were back to odor free water.

Over the years of practicing gratitude, I've used it as a tool to change my bad attitude and you can too!

I'll leave you with this picture and words from my friend Temawani.  I've made it the background of my phone, as a constant reminder of all the blessings that flow into my life.  

"So many children got new clothes and food today, but this homeless boy said the new clothes are more than a home."

Blessings,

Stephanie

Inspirational Speaker and Award-Winning Author of

“The Giving Challenge: 40 Days to a More Generous Life”


Do you remember the sitcom Three's Company? Sunday evening, I got sucked into a celebrity spotlight show on John Ritter. I only knew John as an actor but hearing costars and friends talk about him made me think about the legacy we leave.  

His friends never mentioned him partying, his wealth, the materials possessions he owned such as a mansion or sports cars or the awards we won. Over and over they genuinely shared stories on his generosity on the set, his kindness to all he encountered and how he made people feel, the gratefulness he had for the opportunity to act and do what he loved, his passion as a father, and the joy he brought through his smile and making others laugh.

After all these years after his passing, he still made an incredible impact in the lives he touched, and many gave them credit for their career and how he still influences their craft today.

So, how will people remember you? Will it be for the gifts you gave that money can't buy? I sure hope so!

Blessings,

Stephanie

Inspirational Speaker and Award-Winning Author of

"The Giving Challenge: 40 Days to a More Generous Life"


I went with a friend to the range in college and well, let's just say it didn't end so well. I whacked the guy next to me with my golf ball. And I'm pretty sure I whiffed the ball more than I hit it. Did I mention golfing hurt my back? Overall, the outing at the range wasn't fun and from that moment on, I haven't wasted my time learning to golf. Girls, got better things to do with her time… lol!

With that said, I couldn't help but notice all the buzz on Sunday with Tiger Wood's Masters win.  Pretty incredible if you ask me. Think about, 2005 was the last time he won the masters, 14 years ago when he was the best of the best. Top of his game. Through a series of poor choices, addiction and injuries, he went from number one to not even being able to compete. Yet through all the trials and tribulations, he never quit. Tiger was made to golf. It's his passion. And even when everyone counted him out, most likely even himself at times, he kept swinging.

You know what else was interesting about Sunday's Masters? There was a guy who placed an $85,000 bet, that Tiger would win. The odds of winning were 14-1.  Guess what, his bet paid off and he won close to $1.2M, history's largest golf-related payout. I'm not a fan of gambling, but this man's bet on Tiger reminded me that we only need one person to believe in us. One person that says, "I'm willing to take a chance on you and your talents."  

My questions for you are, one, is there a dream you put aside and through a series of tragic events appears to be at the bottom of the pond on hole #3? If so, take a dive and fish the dream out. And two, who can you get to take a chance on you? Who will give you a little confidence and hold you accountable to putting in the work and then acting on your dream.

I think my new saying will be, "Your dream isn't dead until you stop swinging!"

Blessings,

Stephanie

Inspirational Speaker and Award-Winning Author of

“The Giving Challenge: 40 Days to a More Generous Life”

Several weeks ago, I recommended reading, A Thousand Splendid Suns. I'm still making my way through the book, as the content is heavier than most fiction books I read.

The story is from the perspective of two Afghan women. This morning the chapter I read, the Taliban have entered Kabul, where the women live.  The rule of law is changing. The women will no longer be able to leave their home without a male relative. They are forbidden to wear makeup, jewelry, charming clothes, and nail polish. They are not allowed to speak unless spoken to, make eye contact with men, laugh in public, and attend school or work.  If the women break any of these laws, they will be beaten.

As I read the list, tears streamed down my face as I looked down at my polished nails and sparkling wedding ring. The thought, not once, ever crossed my mind that if I were in public, my colored nails and my rings could lead to a beating.  I'm sure the same thought never crossed your mind. Can you imagine?

I whipped out my gratitude journal and wrote down a list of all the "insignificant" things I'm grateful for that I take for granted living in the USA. Will you do the same?

Taking notice of the small things in life can help change our perspective. If we write down what we appreciate in life, when we are having a bad day, the list can be a tool we use to remind us that, even in the misted of trials, there is still a lot of good in life.

What are you grateful for today?

Blessings,

Stephanie

Inspirational Speaker and Award-Winning Author of

"The Giving Challenge: 40 Days to a More Generous Life"