gratitude: night hike

Lately I have been so bogged down with work (and being sick) that I have not spent much time outdoors. Today, I finally made the decision to push aside the To Do list and get on the trail.

I have been hiking the same trail for the last three years now and it never gets old. It is a very steep fire trail that has breathtaking views of the entire Bay Area, and best of all, it’s practically in my backyard.

With the days getting shorter, I was working against the fading light, but made it far enough that the feeling of gratitude and rejuvenation could take hold. As a bonus, I spotted an owl in a nearby tree just before he swooped across my path! Tonight I am feeling immensely grateful for the fresh perspective that nature so effortlessly provides.

night hike

View from the first vista–the Golden Gate Bridge, though not quite visible, is directly in the center background.


gratitude: natural healing

As I get to the end of this pesky cold, I want to give a huge shout out to Angelica & Peony for the amazing Ginger Menthol Balm that helped me through the worst of the congestion and headaches. Kirsten, the fabulous maker, is a certified acupuncturist and physician of Chinese medicine. She uses her knowledge and creativity to create gentle, effective products that heal and rejuvenate the skin. Thanks to this salve packed with ginger root and menthol crystals, I am immensely grateful for breathing freely!


gratitude: setbacks

As a creative entrepreneur, I make a lot of decisions each day, which inevitably involve risk-taking. One of the biggest risks is presenting my creativity to the public, which doesn’t always go as planned and draws on the more personal side of my business. While there are plenty of affirming experiences, unfortunately the ones that linger are the disappointments.
In any business, calculated risks are essential and yet you can never quite calculate for everything. Sometimes you take the leap and have to dodge a few obstacles before you reach success. Sometimes you never reach it. I find that in these cases there is always a new path discovered that would have been unknown unless that initial leap was taken. I am trying hard to be grateful for the bumpy road of running a business even though today had more setbacks than successes.

risk quote

This quote sums up the ebb and flow of my business, and I imagine, many businesses. Unfortunately, I was unable to find the author to give credit, click on the image to see where I found it along with other inspiring quotes about risk-taking.

gratitude: hard work

I am not sure how many people out there would genuinely appreciate hard work, but it is something I have always appreciated. In elementary school, I loved homework and would happily spend hours completing it; meanwhile, my older brother would spend an average of 75% less time on similar work. I like being busy, working hard to accomplish a goal, and now that I am my own boss, I have found new meaning in my work. Each project, large or small, has a whole new level of pride associated with it, and while others might consider it hard work, I consider it creative, joyful, and rejuvenating. Today, I am grateful for this newfound sense of resolve in my work life.

hard work blog

As I write this, I am working hard to complete my business’ largest project to date–goal: 1,000 pieces!

gratitude: rain

Today I am so simply grateful for RAIN. In this everlasting drought, the Bay Area is struggling to make ends meet water wise, and I’m pretty sure no one is cursing the precipitation today. As I write this, the sky outside is bright blue and sunny with white billowy clouds, but just an hour ago and for many hours before that, it was dark and looming with steady precipitation. I grew up in the it-could-rain-at-any-time Northeast, so I found myself rejoicing at the sight of rain when I first moved to San Francisco in 2008, but these days I have a whole new level of appreciation for rain in the forecast.

What are you grateful for today?


gratitude: change

As I walked in my neighborhood on a gray, brisk morning, sprinkling raindrops fell on my head and fallen leaves crunched under my feet. The leaves on the ground and multi-colored ones on the trees above were an immediate reminder of the changing seasons. I have experienced a lot of change in my personal and professional life this year, and while most changes are uncomfortable at first, they have brought new opportunity and perspective. Today, I am grateful for change in all its easy and uneasy stages and new adventures ahead.

change fall leaves

gratitude: community (part 2)

Today I am grateful for another community that I am a member of, SF Etsy Team. This group is comprised of hundreds of local creative entrepreneurs, who gather virtually and in person to create a supportive community within an often isolating world of independent makers. I have been a member since my business was in its infancy and have always credited the team with getting me to where I am today. I have learned so much from the members of this group and appreciate those who help make it what it is, including Rebecca, the SF Etsy team leader and owner of OodleBaDoodle. I visited Rebecca today to borrow a sign for an upcoming event and we spent some time chatting about all sorts of things–Etsy, creative business, holiday show season, and, of course, the upcoming SF Etsy Holiday Indie Emporium, Nov 28-29. As I mentioned in the previous gratitude post, a sense of belonging is a critical human need, and I feel so grateful that I have access to these supportive communities to help fill that need.

What communities are you grateful for?

SF Etsy Holiday Indie Emporium