Happy Blogiversary to Zen Mama

Happy Blogiversary to the Zen Mama's Blog

Happy Blogiversary to the Zen Mama’s Blog

“Life is what you celebrate. All of it. Even its end.”
― Joanne Harris, Chocolat

4 years ago I saw the word “Blog” on the website I was making for my fledging book, How To Be A Zen Mama. I clicked on it and thus the first blog post was born.

I’ve learned so much over these 4 years. I’ve treated most posts like a conversation between friends about life, parenthood and interesting ideas. I made many great new friends through the blogging world. I’ve treasured every email from someone who’s been touched by a post. I’ve learned, too, about new ideas. Thank you all for being part of this journey! Thank you for celebrating life with me!

“Life Is Fragile” became my first post and it is as relevant today as when I first posted it.

But first, I have a request of you… I’m in the middle of putting together a new book and I need stories. Your stories. I’d like to have positive stories of your life. That would include turning adversity into opportunity, mindfulness, breathing and yoga stories, compassion, kindness and paying it forward, and positive stories of parenting and being a child and more. Plus send any stories of the blog or my books inspiring you! Please email your questions and/or stories to me at thezenmama (@) gmail.com.

So now, in honor of my blogiversay….here it is… my very first post, reposted on my 4th Blog-iversay.

“Enjoy the little things, for one day you may look back and realize they were the big things.”
~ Robert Brault

This is a picture of my middle son, Charlie. We just dropped him off for his freshman year of college. He was definitely ready to go. In an instant, the last 18 years have flown by. We had so many great times at home with him just enjoying our daily interactions. He knows a lot about mindfulness with his unique ability not to be limited by time.

Often at my job as preschool teacher I say to myself, “Life is fragile.” These young 4 and 5 year olds are still babies and their parents are figuring out life at the same time. I really feel for what they’re going through. I get to see so many facets of family life through my job, also as mother to three almost-grown children and their friends, and lastly living in a close neighborhood where eventually you know, without searching or being a gossip, a lot of things about a lot of people. I am a very non-judgmental person who really feels for the personal struggles that so many people go through.

I have watched parents agonize over the little things. I have seen a neighbor’s heart-breaking move due to financial reasons. I have been to a memorial service for a beloved baseball coach of my son. I have watched friends try to be positive through their cancer treatments. I know that all they must be wishing for life to be back to normal.

Not too long ago, when my oldest children were about 2 years and 4 years old, I hated dishes and I hated laundry. It just seemed like I was destined for greater things whether it was being an author or even back at my 3rd grade teaching job. I had gotten a paycheck then and worked less than I did being at home with my two children. Then I read a chapter from Mitten Strings From God: Reflections for Mothers in a Hurry by Katrina Kennison. The book is a series of chapters about enjoying life with her young boys.

In one of the very first chapters, Katrina Kennison talks about an author for whom she was an editor. Olive Ann Burn, author of Cold Sassy Tree, was trying to continue to survive cancer, but ultimately did not. She wrote about what she would miss about life. She’d miss the dailiness of things. One of the things she mentioned was dishes. She wrote of the special things she’d miss seeing out the window as she did the dishes.

“I have learned to quit speeding through life, always trying to do too many things too quickly, without taking the time to enjoy each day’s doings. I think I always thought of real living as being high. I don’t mean on drugs – I mean real living was falling in love, or when I got my first job, or when I was able to help somebody, . . . In between the highs I was impatient – you know how it is – life seemed so Daily. Now I love the dailiness. I enjoy washing dishes, I enjoy cooking, I see my father’s roses out the kitchen window. I like picking beans. I notice everything – birdsongs, the clouds, the sound of wind, the glory of sunshine after two weeks of rain.”
— Olive Ann Burns

Well, from that moment on I decided to love doing the dishes. I didn’t want to wait for a tragedy, like cancer, for me to appreciate the dailiness of life. The laundry took a little longer. But now as I fold my children’s clothes or my husband’s or that of the many boys end up in our house, I feel a part of their lives and what they love and realize how much I would miss them if and when they are gone.

We’ll miss Charlie a lot but there are no regrets because we enjoyed all the daily moments with him from babyhood to the fine man he has become.

Life is fragile. The people you know may not be in your daily life forever, whether it’s off to college, a new job or something more permanent. Treasure the dailiness of living. Even if it’s only found in the laundry or the dishes.

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39 Responses to Happy Blogiversary to Zen Mama

  1. Thank you for sharing your blog and your wonderful message with us Betsy. Congratulations on four years!

    Alex

    [Reply]

    Betsy Reply:

    Thanks Alex! I’m happy to count you as an online friend!

    [Reply]

  2. Elle says:

    So many congratulations on your four years Betsy. You have shared so much inspiration over those years and I know for myself the number of times I’ve been to your site and been uplifted and given a cup of joy. I’m so grateful to be your online friend.

    Big e-hugs to you.
    xoxo

    [Reply]

    Betsy Reply:

    Thank you Elle! I’m humbled to have had you find inspiration on my page.
    So glad to have you as my online friend!
    xoxo

    [Reply]

  3. Betsy, Congratulations! I always love stopping here. No matter what the subject you always make it uplifting.

    [Reply]

    Betsy Reply:

    Thank you Julie! I so appreciate you being part of our positive community!!
    xoxo
    Betsy

    [Reply]

  4. Vidya Sury says:

    Congratulations, dear Betsy. To think I’ve known you closely for most of this time warms my heart. I love our connection. Hugs!

    [Reply]

    Betsy Reply:

    Thank you Vidya! You were one of the first bloggers that I got to know well! And I, too, just love our connection!
    Hugs back!!

    [Reply]

  5. Hi Betsy,

    Congratulations & Celebrations :)

    Tough to imagine it’s been four years…but that’s exactly how time really flies. It’s been a great journey, more so, knowing you for the person you are. Wishing you many more to come. :)

    Thanks for sharing. Have a nice week :)

    [Reply]

    Betsy Reply:

    Thank you Harleena!
    4 years have gone by quickly!
    I so appreciate you taking the time to stop by and comment!!

    [Reply]

  6. Hi Betsy!
    Congratulations on your 4th anniversary! Life is fragile, for sure! All the best for many more happy years of writing about this mysterious and wonderful thing called life!
    Lori

    [Reply]

    Betsy Reply:

    Thank you Lori!
    So appreciate you stopping by and commenting!!

    [Reply]

  7. Betsy,
    Happy Blogiversary! I love this post. May even be my favorite! I love the idea of falling in love with the dailiness of things. Love it! Printing out the quote. Thanks for all the inspiration you’ve given to myself and others. xo

    [Reply]

    Betsy Reply:

    Thank you Tess! Isn’t that the greatest quote. It quite changed my life and my perspective! So happy to have you as part our positive community here. I’ve been thinking about your sister and would love an update.
    xoxo

    [Reply]

  8. Sandi Amorim says:

    Happy Blogiversary Betsy!
    Thank you for the reminder that life is fragile. In the busyness of life, it’s easy to forget the tender places in each other.

    [Reply]

    Betsy Reply:

    Yes, it’s easy to forget that life is fragile. I really try to remind myself of this every day.
    Thank you for stopping by and commenting, Sandy.

    [Reply]

  9. Congratulations Betsy! I’m a new reader here and so glad I found you! Your son looks so happy as he begins this new chapter. Will share your wonderful quote on social media: “Treasure the dailiness of living.”

    [Reply]

    Betsy Reply:

    Thank you Marine!
    He’s very happy at college and has had many life lessons!
    And I appreciate you sharing and commenting. I’ll come by and visit your blog as well.

    [Reply]

  10. Congratulations Betsy on your success. Looking forward to many more blogiversaries! :)

    [Reply]

    Betsy Reply:

    Thanks Carolyn!! I appreciate you stopping by and commenting!!

    [Reply]

  11. Congrats Betsy on four years! Amazing how fast the time flies by. Your first post is just as relevant today. Thanks for sharing and best of luck with your new book!

    [Reply]

    Betsy Reply:

    Thank you Cathy!
    Time does fly by!
    I’d love to have you contribute your story to the book. I’ll send an email soon.

    [Reply]

  12. Victor says:

    Hello Betsy,

    Congratulations! I am sure the four years have gone fast for you, and so much has happened in such little time, hasn’t it?

    It’s cool to read this first post of yours. Even though much has changed since then, the message is still timely and still relevant.

    Congratulations to you once again! :)

    -Victor

    [Reply]

    Betsy Reply:

    Thanks so much Victor!
    Since it was my first post, no one really read it back then (except for my parents and the Zen Papa). I really appreciate you stopping by and leaving a comment!

    [Reply]

  13. Happy blog-iversary! Always love reading your posts!

    [Reply]

    Betsy Reply:

    Thanks Christine! I always love reading your blog posts as well!!

    [Reply]

  14. Li-ling says:

    Wow! What a milestone. Your first post is as inspiring today as it as when you first wrote it. Thank you for blogging.

    [Reply]

    Betsy Reply:

    Thank you Li-ling,
    I’m so glad you dropped by to comment! I hope to see you here more often!
    I’ll check out your blog as well!

    [Reply]

  15. Happy 4 years, Betsy! What a great post also. I hope Charlie is loving college so far. I might send a story your way. When do you need them by?

    [Reply]

    Betsy Reply:

    Thanks Julie,
    Charlie loves college. He’s a junior now and is deep into his major of art but also had a band and maybe loves that more!! I’d love to have a story. I’ll send you an email.

    [Reply]

  16. Galen Pearl says:

    Congratulations! So glad you decided to celebrate by reposting your first post. I LOVE how you decided to love doing the dishes. That was a great line. I’m going to remember it. In fact, I’m going to start loving to vacuum…right now.

    [Reply]

    Betsy Reply:

    Thank you Galen! Nobody ever read the first post as I didn’t have any readers back then. How did it go loving to vacuum? :)
    Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

    [Reply]

  17. ROBIN SHARMA says:

    Congrats ….

    Betsy…..for such a long time help….to your readers…

    I really became your fan….

    thanks…for being with us….

    and hope same for future.

    good bye…take care.

    [Reply]

    Betsy Reply:

    Thank you Robin! So glad to have you as part of this positive community!
    Hope to read more of your comments in the future.

    [Reply]

  18. Evelyn Lim says:

    Congratulations! Reaching 4 years is a milestone to celebrate. I have seen so many blogs come and go. I definitely know that it is not easy to keep up with writing and publishing week-after-week and year-after-year.

    A monk once gave me the advice of washing the dishes with mindfulness. His advice was to take every opportunity to slow down and practice being present. I can’t say that I have succeeded with listening to his advice but I have certainly felt more at peace and joy whenever I have to do housework that I don’t like LOL!

    All the best to your book!!

    Love and blessings,
    Evelyn

    [Reply]

    Betsy Reply:

    Thank you Evelyn!
    It’s amazing how fast four years has gone by. I love the advice the monk gave you, not unlike the quote by Olive Ann Burns. I often need reminders but being in the present moment can make life must more meaningful.
    Thanks for all your well wishes!!
    xoxo

    [Reply]

  19. Christine says:

    Betsy, happy blogiversary! Wow, 4 years – what a milestone. Congratulations!

    Though I didn’t know about your blog in its infancy, I was so grateful when I did find it. Thank you for all the beautiful, real-life inspiration you share. Your approachable wisdom is always so refreshing – and comfortable, if that makes sense.

    By the way, loved your first post!

    Christine
    xoxo

    [Reply]

    Betsy Reply:

    Thank you Christine! It does feel like a milestone.
    I’m so glad you’ve enjoyed the blog – that’s the nicest compliment I’ve heard!
    So appreciate your comment!
    xoxo

    [Reply]

  20. Pingback: Happy 2nd Birthday to The Brighter Side of Life! | The Brighter Side of Life

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