Inspiration For Your Ears & Soul: Leon Bridges, Embracing Rest and Living in the Now  

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Mother, wife, sister, friend, writer / blogger / creative organizer, budding photographer... These are just a few of the many hats I juggle each day. I believe creativity is oxygen for the soul. I created Live In Color blog to celebrate the beauty in every moment, from faith to inspiration and motherhood.And it is soon becoming Pray with Our Feet blog which will focus on the intersection of faith and activism. Follow the inspiration on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/praywithourfeetblog/
Emelda De Coteau
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Oh such a busy week, lovelies. But I still managed to discover some gems along the way. Check out the inspiration from around the web:

Leon Bridges soulful Tiny Desk concert series. So much life! I couldn’t stop dancing or humming along. 

Every now and then, nourish yourself with an uplifting film

Out of the box ideas for quinoa at dinner!   

Returning to rest for Mamas is a really good thing. Oh how I can relate! 

Via LinkedIn Feed

So this popped up on my LinkedIn feed. It’s such a powerful reminder to live in gratitude and be present. 

During a few rare quiet moments yesterday, I discovered  Iyanla Vanzant’s audiobook, Finding Faith in Difficult Times. She gives us so much to think about and act upon as we hold fast to faith in challenging situations. 

Are We Too Busy For Friendship Now? 

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Mother, wife, sister, friend, writer / blogger / creative organizer, budding photographer... These are just a few of the many hats I juggle each day. I believe creativity is oxygen for the soul. I created Live In Color blog to celebrate the beauty in every moment, from faith to inspiration and motherhood.And it is soon becoming Pray with Our Feet blog which will focus on the intersection of faith and activism. Follow the inspiration on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/praywithourfeetblog/
Emelda De Coteau
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Photo via Unsplash

Last week, one of my bestie’s, Shan and I, hit Red Emma’s. It’s the first time we have really hung out alone (she’s usually over to the house with me, Kes and Nai).

As I took in her delightful energy, my heart overflowing with joy, I noticed in this crowded coffee house, half the folks  were staring at laptops, many while with friends. And this blog post title popped into my head: Are we too busy for friendship now?

Let’s face it. Many of us are overcommitted and exhausted. Friendship takes work and it’s easier to scroll someone’s FB, Twitter or IG feed, send intermittant text messages, and pat ourselves on the back for staying in touch. But is this friendship, or social obligation?

When we honestly ask ourselves which person in our lives mean the most to us, we often find that it is those who, instead of giving advice, solutions, or cures, have chosen rather to share our pain and touch our wounds with a warm and tender hand. The friend who can be silent with us in a moment of despair or confusion, who can stay with us in an hour of grief and bereavement, who can tolerate not knowing, not curing, not healing and face with us the reality of our powerlessness, that is a friend who cares.

– Henri J.M. Nouwen, Out of Solitude: Three Meditations on the Christian Life

As we grow older – the life partner comes, our babies, career, etc. – and it becomes tougher to maintain friendships or cultivate new ones; yet I find authentic connection with another person to be utterly divine. It nourishes my soul, opens me up to novel ways of seeing the world.

The other day, I called a  good friend. We usually text or email, but I yearned to hear her voice, contagious laughter and imagine her smile as she spoke. So I picked up the phone and dialed. Funny how what is old becomes new again, huh?

I could hear the surprise in her voice as she gently joked about the rarity of my calls (being a Mama of little one can create some distance in your friendships). Still, after sitting with the depth of those words for a few days, I began wonder if collectively, we have allowed the noise of this world to overtake genuine friendship, and the beauty of human interaction. If we text or email frequently, can we also commit to a call or lunch? Are settling for becoming  acquaintances instead of cultivating authentic relationships?

Earlier this week I talked with an old college friend. She reminded me about us getting together; one of her friends had passed away of a heart attack before they were able to reconnect. None of us knows how long we have I thought as she lamented his passing, partially still in shock.

Making the effort to momentarily climb up from the dizzying lists of growing tasks in our own world is difficult, and at times, spending an afternoon with a friend feels luxurious, but the reality is it is not.

You and I need one another, beyond status updates and stunning Instagram feeds. We are created for fellowship and community. Do something for #tbt today – have a conversation with a friend, make plans to meet up in person, and then turn  off your laptops, iPads and phones. Rediscover each other in those quiet spaces.

What Reality TV Star, Writer & Stylist Daisy Lewellyn’s Death Taught Me About Life This Week 

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Mother, wife, sister, friend, writer / blogger / creative organizer, budding photographer... These are just a few of the many hats I juggle each day. I believe creativity is oxygen for the soul. I created Live In Color blog to celebrate the beauty in every moment, from faith to inspiration and motherhood.And it is soon becoming Pray with Our Feet blog which will focus on the intersection of faith and activism. Follow the inspiration on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/praywithourfeetblog/
Emelda De Coteau
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Last Friday afternoon as I scrolled through my Instagram feed, I came across a photo of Daisy Lewellyn, reality TV star (“Blood Sweat and Heels”), writer and “Queen of effortless chic,” accompanied by three words which transformed a casual IG visit into much more: “Rest In Peace.”

What? Dead at 36? Really?!?! As I sat stunned, my mind moved rapidly to digest the weight of it all. I vaguely remembered hearing she had cancer, but assumed, like many of us, she would beat it.

Her infectious spirit and laughter illuminated the screen, week after week. And then, suddenly, as Daisy’s life overflowed with promise and accomplishment it ended.

  

Do We Know What it Means to Live Fully?

People often say “live life to the fullest.” But does any of us understand what this means? What living alive and ON purpose actually looks like? Have we unpacked it for ourselves?

Our society  worships adventure in theory (and vicariously through pop culture), but in daily practice, we shun dreams and vision, instead quietly training our children to die at 25 with this ethos: get a degree, work endlessly, procreate, and save responsibly for retirement. Exist, we insist, through our fearful reassurances, and leave the living to a privileged few.

Daring to Live Greatly 

It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena… if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat. – Theodore Roosevelt

But what if we lived each day as if it were the last, stubbornly clinging to unrelenting courage?  Priorities would shift; sitting in misery and sameness would become uncomfortable. Do we have to face a terminal disease to start living? Absolutely not! Begin your journey towards wholeness and being present in the now.

The longer I read articles and explored her social media feeds, I began to realize something. Daisy’s death taught me two vital lessons about living:

People Remember Your Energy, Not Your Words – We often think folks remember what we said, when actually they recall far more how you make them feel. 

The energy we bring to the world is the final and lasting imprint of our legacy. Daisy’s bubbly nature encouraged so many around her, like this young journalist at Essence who held on to an uplifting phone text from her for months. 

And so our question and daily challenge becomes are we birthing an energy of healing, love, and beauty? Are we illuminating the planet in our unique way? 

Be Led by Faith Always & Don’t Be Afraid of Stillness – Daisy’s Christian faith remained a cornerstone in her life. As she grew ill, her closeness to God became stronger. Instead of pushing away out of anger she got still, centered and connected to God.

Celebrate Moments, Not Destinations – Don’t wait until you overcome an obstacle or setback to celebrate. Honor yourself for showing up; consider your perseverence in the face of the odds to be victorious, because, lovelies, it is amazing! 

Talk to Me, Loves: 

What life lessons can you learn from others around you about living more fully?  Do you struggle to honor joy in the midst of struggle?