March Slice of Life Challenge Posts

by Stephanie, March 01, 2021

Each month, I choose one word to guide my daily actions and I strive to complete one little thing each day that brings me closer to living my word into existence

This month, my word is gratitude and the Slice of Life Writing Challenge is helping me better appreciate the small blessings in my life. 

Given my love of epistolary novels, I’ll write a short letter of gratitude each day to a person, item, location or experience I'm grateful for within the last 24 hours and want to hold onto. Some days might be short and sweet, others might be longer and heartfelt, but all entries will help me cultivate a mindset of gratitude and positivity and provide memories for years to come. 

March 31, 2021

Dear Two Writing Teachers,

We did it! I may not have completed the Slice of Live Daily Writing Challenge in the past, but this year, I nailed it. I’ve been spending time thinking about why this year is different than all the rest and I realized it came down to purpose. In previous years, I sliced about anything and everything with no true purpose or intention to guide my writing. But this year, I focused my daily slices on gratitude, something I wanted to intentionally cultivate during the month of March.

Each day, I wrote a short letter of gratitude to a person, item, location or experience I was grateful for within the last 24 hours and wanted to hold onto. It was a game changer.

Over the course of the month, I found myself slowly shifting my mindset. Instead of searching for little things to be grateful for, I found myself regularly noticing them throughout my day, things I likely would have never noticed before. No, that’s not right. Things I KNOW I wouldn’t have noticed before. And in that noticing, I realized something pretty powerful. It is almost impossible to notice the little things in life that matter, that bring us joy and that make us happy, without margin in our days and a notebook in our heart.

When I was rushed and busy, I overlooked many of the small pleasures throughout my day. But when I was unhurried and literally had time to smell the roses, I did.

So today, I thank you. This challenge not only gave me daily slices to write about, it gave me daily blessings to live for.

Thank you from the bottom of my writing heart,

Stephanie


March 30, 2022

To My Teenage Son,

You are the light of my life. Well, actually, one of three lights, but a very important one. =) You’re my youngest child by only twelve minutes and have a joyful, playful spirit. As we head into the teenage years, things can get a bit chaotic, stressed and even frustrating. But you know what I love most about you? What I’m most grateful for? Your love. Because even though you’re fourteen, you still say ‘Love you’ after every phone call, even in front of your friends. Because even though your fourteen, you still hug me before bed each and every night. Because even though your fourteen and we are a bit miffed at each other, you still call out “I love you” before the door slams. So today, I am truly so grateful to call you mine, to learn from your loyal love and strive to be what you already are.

I love you,

Mom


March 29, 2021

To This Brand New Day,

So, I’ve been part of the Slice of Life Writing Challenge and each day, I’ve been writing a letter of gratitude to someone, something or some sort of experience that I am thankful for within the last 24 hours. Most days, this has been easy. And in fact, I’ve found myself shifting my mindset over the course of the challenge to automatically look for the good in my day and savor the little moments I am certain I would have missed before. But the last 24 hours was different. It was filled with challenge, with stress, with heartbreak and with hard times, so I struggled to find something to feel grateful for. Until I woke up this morning, to you, a brand new day. A chance to start again. A chance to be alive. An opportunity to truly be grateful.

Thankful for your possibilities,

Stephanie


March 28, 2021

Dear Little Girl in the Red Outfit,

I pulled up the red light today, sighed with fatigue and glanced out my window just in time to see you, your father and your baby sibling walk by. Your dad was pushing the stroller slow and steady, but you? You were dancing. You were literally dancing your way down the sidewalk, arms swaying in the air, legs skipping to an internal beat and joy beaming from your face. I was mesmerized watching you, my fatigue fading away as I smiled wide and found myself swaying in the car to match you. We may never meet, but I hope you know what a gift to the world you are, a gift I was honored enough to witness for myself, even if only for a few moments.

I won’t forget your joy,

Stephanie


March 27, 2021

Dear Smell of Fresh Laundry,

In a day of swirling and twirling, you provide a reprieve. The monotonous task of washing, drying, folding and stacking has almost a calming effect and your scent feels like therapy for my mind. Each inhale is a reminder of so many memories, of the comforts of home and of the love that goes into the fabric of our lives.

Thank you,

Stephanie


March 26, 2021

To the Double Chocolate Vegan Gluten-Free Cupcake,

In my quest to be gluten and dairy free to keep some persistent health challenges at bay, I’ve left behind some of my most favorite foods. Especially cake. So when my husband brought you home, a double chocolate, vegan, gluten-free glorious creation, I had a hard time holding back. You could feel the love, couldn’t you? And it wasn’t just from me. My children devoured you, too. So thank you bringing us together and enjoying, once again, a sweet treat with my sweet family. 

You’re the best, 

Stephanie 


March 25, 2021

Dear Twitter, 

We have had an up and down sort of relationship, haven’t we? I resisted you for years and when I finally gave in and made the leap, I was regretful for not having joined you sooner. I was, and still am, amazed at the connections you've brought me: literacy coaches all over the globe, virtual friends who share their TBR stacks and authors who inspire me with daily wisdom. We’ve tried fast chats and slow chats together, created list upon list together and created a professional learning network (PLN) that supports me each and every day. So…thank you. Thank you for bringing the most amazing people right to my computer screen and furthering my own learning. 

See you tomorrow, 

Stephanie


March 24, 2021

To the Yellow Tennis Ball, 

I’ve never much liked you. Whenever I’ve tried to play with you appropriately, I stumbled. I had fun, yes. But I could never quite feel confident and competent at your game. I have a few of you laying around in my garage, but that was the extent of our interaction….until we got our Labradoodle puppy. 

Now, I can’t imagine living without you. You keep my puppy occupied for hours, fetching your glorious yellow fuzz, and chewing on you incessantly (instead of my shoes). But today, I discovered your true calling. You see, my puppy is a recue puppy and he is incredibly wary of other people, truly frightened of other dogs. So when we walk, he enthusiastically barks his disapproval when people or dogs come near. 

But today, he took you with him. Today, if he barked, he would drop you, his favorite toy. So he didn’t. He happily munched on you as we passed family after family, dog after dog. And now I have a true appreciation for you. 

Pleasantly Walking with a Puppy, 

Stephanie


March 23, 2021

Dear Coffee Splash Sticks,

You are a dandy little invention. At first, I wondered what your use was, even though I thought you were the cutest little thing sticking out of my coffee cup. Was it to keep the steam from leaving my cup? Was it to seal freshness like plastic wrap around the lid of a jar? But today, I figured you out. Today, I learned your true purpose: to save my beloved cup of fairly expensive coffee from tumbling out of the cup unexpectedly. With three children and five dogs, you never know what you’ll find in the cup holder of our car. So when I stashed my cup safely in the holder and inadvertently balanced my coffee cup on a random object, the cup titled and I felt like my life passed in slow motion, watching the cup tip ever so slightly and then not so slightly as I reached for it. But I needn’t worry because you had my back. You, the protector-of-coffee-splash-stick that is more than a pretty face, you’re a coffee-saver, too. And that’s a pretty good thing in my book. 

Until the next time, 

Stephanie


March 22, 2021

Dear COVID-19,

I never thought I would write you a thank you note. I bet you didn’t either. 

For so long, I complained about you, your effects on my family and on the world and my fears for the future. But not today. 

Today, I thank you. Because today, I watched my daughter play field hockey for the first time in over a year and a half. And because of you, I truly appreciated each and every second of it. 

Before you, I might have rushed to the game, dreaded the drive, stressed over the juggling act it required to balance the activities of my other two children, checked my watch to see what time it was and mentally scan through the never-ending to-do list I knew would be waiting for me after the final horn blared. 

But not today. 

Today, I woke up eagerly awaiting the time we could hop into the car and head to school. Today, I happily stopped for a cup of coffee and enjoyed the scenery of the long drive. Today, I gave the game my entire attention, something I haven’t been able to do for so long. 

So thank you, COVID-19. Thank you for reminding my what truly matters most and for ensuring I savored each and every moment I’m now blessed to have.

Eternally grateful, 

Stephanie


March 21, 2021

Dear Early Mornings, 

I thought it was about time that I thanked you for the sustenance you provide. Sure, I might grumble that you arrive far too early and sure, I might hit snooze to give me just ten more minutes before you arrive. I'm sorry about that, by the way. Because what I should be doing is jumping out of bed to greet you, and not the other way around. Our time together is always well-spent. From yoga and Pilates to reading and notebooking to slower cups of coffee and lunch preparation. You give me the margin in my life I didn't realize I needed until far too late. But now, you ensure that I'm the person I want to be for those around me. So today, I thank you. Thank you for our quiet time together. Thank you for the nourishment you provide to my spirit. Thank you for the productivity you bring to the rest of my day. And most importantly, thank you for being there. Always. 

Thankfully yours, 

Stephanie

P.S. I promise I won't hit snooze to delay our time together tomorrow. 


March 20, 2012

Dear Lisa Sonora, 

I've always been a notebooker. I've carried a notebook around with me since I was a little girl and now, have many notebooks I tote in my bag on the daily. So, while having a notebook is something that has stayed the same over time, what I actually put in my notebook has changed significantly. When I was little, I filled my notebook with memories and musings. What happened that day? What made me happy? What pictures could I draw? What lists could I write (yes, even back then, I was a list-maker!). As I grew, my notebook became more functional: to-do lists, schedules, calendars, reminders and more. My notebook would wax and wane in this fashion over time, from creative to functional and back again. Today, I've settled on some sort of happy medium (and having notebooks for specific purposes helps, too!) and balance between writing to fuel my heart and writing to manage my life, although admittedly, writing to manage my life always seems to take precedence. Until your challenge. Your 30-Day Journal Challenge has been exactly what I needed to bring my creative, soulful self to the page again. A mix of media and text, your daily emails prompt me to show up to the page with my whole writing heart, not just my writing brain, something that has brought me great peace already. Thank you for this gift you offer to the world. 

With gratitude, 

Stephanie


March 19, 2021

Dear Hannah at Moving Mango, 

The COVID quarantine has taken a toll on my physical health. Too much time spent sitting at a desk, hunched over a laptop has left my posture stiff and stuck. Too much time spent indoors has left me feeling tight and even shorter. =) Yoga has done a world of good for my mental health and clarify, but your Moving Mango Pilates has done a world of good for my spine, my posture and yes, my abs, too. =) I never regret pushing play on one of your YouTube videos each morning. Your calm spirit, quiet energy and relentless support have given me a strength and power I didn’t know I had. 

See you tomorrow morning, 

Stephanie


March 18, 2021

To My Blue Light Glasses, 

I knew you were a thing, but I didn’t really know just how much I’d need you. Zoom after Zoom, email after email and file and file, you lessen the strain. Your case sits comfortably on my desk nestled into the small space between my mouse and coffee cup, a space of honor. You never fail me, no matter how long I sit there, always available, always ready. There is work to be done, reading and writing to be enjoyed and connection to be made. Together.

Your farsighted friend, 

Stephanie


March 17, 2021

To Martha’s Dandee Creme,

You are a community landmark and a family tradition. That soft, cold, thick, sweet ice-cream is at the top of our summer bucket lists each year. Every year, we visit you during your opening week and every year, we visit you during your closing week, with many visits in-between, too. From the dairy-less-Dole treats to the brownie sundae to the vanilla-chocolate twists, you always have what we need. COVID may have taken our last-week-to-go-to-Martha’s tradition last year, but we eagerly waited in the freezing cold for our first cone together this year. Ice Cream. Family. Sweetness. 

A Grateful Mom, 

Stephanie


March 16, 2021

To Sibme,

A few years ago, I stumbled upon your company as I scrolled through my social media feed. I had no idea how much your mission, your coaching and your people would mean to me just a short time later. From our virtual coaching cycles, our coaching cohorts, the Better Together conference or the Sibme Coach Replay show, you’ve invited me into a community of passionate educators. Educators who truly look out for teachers and their students, who are continually striving to learn and innovate and who do so joyfully. You fuel my own learning, my coaching spirit and more. 

To many more collaborations, 

Stephanie


March 15, 2021

Dear Dishwasher,

Why is it that oftentimes, we only truly feel grateful for something after it’s gone? We’ve spent a lot of time together over the years, washing dishes from countless family dinners, celebrations and just because moments. I’ve never truly appreciated just how much support you’ve given me each day, letting me head up to bed for the night while you busily work for me, even if I haven’t properly done my job rinsing and scraping your dishes. You’ve lived a long life full of service and kindness and for that, I am grateful. It’s only been a few days since you’ve retired, but I cannot say without hesitation that I miss you greatly (so do my pillow and dry hands). Your replacement is on it’s way, but not soon enough for me. That’s how valued you are.

Fondly, 

Stephanie


March 14, 2021

To My Couch, 

My note to you is simple and sweet today: Thank you. Thank you for being there for me when I was at my worst. Thank you for never judging how long I was sharing space with you or the tears that may have fallen on your fabric. Your silent support is appreciated. 

I know your there when I need you,

Stephanie


March 13, 2021

To My Bulletproof Decaf Coffee,

I didn’t know what I didn’t know. Now, I knew that caffeine and I did NOT get along and it was best that we parted ways indefinitely. So we did. But since I couldn’t give up the taste of coffee, I switched to decaf (but not you) instead. Later, I read an article warning of the higher levels of mold found in decaf coffee beans, something that also did not get along with me. So what’s a coffee-loving-caffeine-sensitive-mold-avoider to do? Scour the Internet high and low for a clean coffee bean that was decaffeinated by a swiss water process (NOT soaked in solvent!) and delivered to my home, ready for my beloved coffee grinder. And that’s when I found you. My clean, tested for toxins, rainforest alliance certified, bulletproof decaf coffee bean. So now, I know what I didn’t know and I’m grateful for the aroma, taste and contentment you bring each and every morning. 

Grateful Every Morning, 

Stephanie


March 12, 2021

Dear Elizabeth Gilbert, 

I used to be one of those people who said they didn’t have a creative bone in their body: I couldn’t draw or paint, my singing was only good enough for the shower and I couldn’t ‘make things’ that my more creative peers could. I’ve slowly learned what creativity is and what it isn’t, but your book just blew everything I knew right out of the water. We are ALL creative as creativity is a way of living. 

It all started with your view on ideas: what they are, where they come from and where they go next if not nurtured. I devoured every word, trying to figure out how I’d nurture my own creativity (after I figured out what it was, of course) until you wrote about moving away from passion and toward curiosity. Every fiber of my being was at attention when you described how a tiny interest in keeping a garden ultimately led to you writing The Signature of All Things….simply by saying yes to the trail of curiosity. Now THAT I can relate to. I want to fill my life with lots of little yesses that ultimately lead to a live well lived, because we never know where one little yes will take us. Big Magic. 

When I turned the last page, I felt a tingly sensation through my whole body, a giddiness that I now knew was the feeling when inspiration arrives and an idea is knocking on your door. Your final line has stayed with me: the treasures that are hidden inside you are hoping you will say yes. And I am. =)

Creatively Yours, 

Stephanie

March 11, 2021

To My 16-Year Old’s Driver’s Test,

I’ve been fearing you for a while. I never believed the well-wishers when they said that time would pass in the blink of an eye and before I’d know it, my son would be driving. And here we are. You signify so much that I am unwilling to admit, but mainly that my baby boy is no longer a baby boy. That once he passes you, he’ll be one step closer to independence and I’ll be one step closer to worry. But today, I am grateful for you. I am grateful for the glorious, uninterrupted time with my growing son in the car without cell phones or other distractions. Time spent driving, talking and laughing. So while I still fear you, I have seven days left to be grateful for you, too, and I’m going to enjoy every minute. 

Yours Truly, 

Stephanie


March 10, 2021

To the Bathroom Mirror at Kelly’s Roots,

Oh, you made two long-time friends feel good, friends that can only get together every couple of months or so, sometimes longer. Sometimes, we think we look like the 20-somethings we were when we first met. And sometimes, we don’t. Today was one of those days. Until it wasn’t. Because of you. As I waited for my friend to use the restroom, she unexpectedly opened the door only moments after she walked in. She waved for me to come inside and placed me squarely in front of you: you with the most gracious lighting we’ve seen in a while. Rather than lamenting about the typical fluorescent lighting that wreaks havoc on our tired eyes, we stood there in front of you with big smiles instead.  And that, my new friend, is a gift to two 40-something friends who needed a boost. 

Eternally grateful, 

Stephanie

P.S: We’ll be back. 


March 9, 2021

To the Crisp Weather, 

I’ve realized that temperature is relative. After a spell of incredibly cold ten-degree days, the warmth of your thirty degrees felt downright delightful. You were calling to me all day as I looked out the window in-between virtual meetings and writing sessions. Finally, at the end of the day, I answered. I grabbed my jacket, my hat and my mittens for good measure. I found the puppy, asked my husband to tag along and set off. Your air was crisp, the combination of leaves and snow were crunching under my feet, the puppy was happily pouncing on pinecones and I enjoyed a good conversation with a loved one. I might usually lament how cold you are and how long you last, but today, I’m thankful for your crisp air that brought much to my soul. 

I’ll be back, 

Stephanie


March 8, 2021

To my Labradoodle Puppy and my Kenmore Elite Refrigerator,

Well, the two of you are quite the team. One has an hourly hankering for ice cubes and another has the ability to provide them. While I’m usually happy to oblige (after all, I prefer you chew an ice cube over my Zoom slippers), you decided to take manners into your own hands. I can honestly say I’ve never been so surprised, so in awe and so filled with laughter over your accomplishment. So here’s to the both of you: the puppy who has figured out how to dispense ice cubes and the refrigerator who so graciously provides them. 

Love you both, 

Stephanie


March 7, 2021

Dear #preservicelit, 

The idea for you was hatched a couple of years ago. I combined my love for Twitter chats with my frustration of not being able to attend popular chats during the busy evening hours and created a chat that was meant for education students, preservice teachers and their instructors and any literacy educators who wanted to support the profession on Saturday mornings. Our relationship has wavered over the years. Yes, we meet on the first Saturday of each month at 9am EST, but I often forget about you in the meantime. I look forward to fast-chatting with educators, but often procrastinate scheduling my tweets, possibly making you feel less valued. But every time we gather for the chat, not matter how big or small the audience is, I learn. I connect with new educators. I re-connect with others. I share information freely to help others. They do the same. I ask questions to push my thinking. And get answers that help...and sometimes lead to even better questions. That's exactly what happened at our most recent chat. While our audience was small, it was mighty: passionate educators taking time out on a Saturday morning to support each other as we celebrate virtual instruction and intervention. So, thank you #preservicelit, for bringing this thoughtful, giving group of educators together. You, and they, fuel my teaching and coaching spirit. 

Thankfully, 

Stephanie


March 6, 2021

Dear Egg Whites,

I’ve underestimated you. For so long, I only looked at you as a source of protein. I’d crack you, scramble you, boil you and flip you into an omelet. I’d connect you with vegetables, toss you with cheese and sprinkle you with salt. And this whole time, you never once revealed your hidden superpower. Until today. Today, you arranged yourself in the shape of a tiny heart, a tiny heart meant just for me to see for a fleeting moment. And that fleeting moment kept a smile on my face for the rest of the day. So here’s to you, egg whites, formerly my favorite breakfast of choice and now, my favorite sender of secret messages. 

Stephanie

March 5, 2021


Dear Miranda, 

You, my daughter, know the little things matter. You saw how frazzled I was as I attempted to rush down the basement stairs to my next Zoom meeting balancing my coffee, my water bottle and my notebook. You saw me try to move our puppy to the side so I could hurry down the stairs. You also saw my coffee get knocked out of my hands by said puppy and bounce down the stairs, tumbling over and over. You saw my tears of frustration (you know I love my coffee) and my hatred of being late. You tossed me the paper towels, took care of the dog and shut the door so I could log in. And then. And then you did the most wonderfully special thing: You tiptoed down the stairs and secretly slid a new cup of coffee to me, all while hiding under the radar of the Zoom screen. I’m not sure how or why I'm lucky enough to call you mine, but I’m so grateful for you every day.

I love you, 

Mom


March 4, 2021

Dear Virtual Coaching Cohort, 

I truly believe we are the average of whatever we surround ourselves with: the food we eat, the friends we keep close, the ways we spend our time and more. That’s why I love surrounding myself with people who are constantly thinking forward and are brave enough to share their voices with the world so I can learn from them. So today, I am grateful for you. The educators, instructional coaches and teacher leaders who have chosen to come together to learn, collaborate and step out of their comfort zones for the sake of their students. I applaud your work, our work, and look forward to learning together. 

Your literacy coach, 

Stephanie


March 3, 2021

To the Kind Elderly Gentleman at the Supermarket, 

You didn’t know that I didn’t sleep last night and was tired. You didn’t know that my mind was tired and foggy from a day of grading, writing and Zoom sessions. You didn’t know that every member of my family was disappointed in me for one reason or another throughout the day. You didn’t know that my dishwasher broke with a full load inside AND in the sink. You didn’t know that I was at the store not just to get what I needed to make dinner for my family, but to literally get out of my house to get a break. You didn’t know that I wore my favorite jacket to cheer me up, rather than the bulky winter coat I would have put on. You didn’t know any of this. So when you quietly came up to me and asked if you could give me a compliment, I was surprised. And when you said it was nice to see a lovely lady in a lovely jacket, you didn’t know it was exactly what I needed. 

Forever grateful, 

Stephanie 


March 2, 2021


Dear Starbucks,

Thank you for your brilliant invention: the puppuccino. My daughter taught me about this item on the secret menu and I honestly did not believe her until your kind employee asked if we’d like one for our tiny Yorkie, Lucy, sitting in the front seat. Watching her daintily lick the thick, sweet whipped cream was the highlight of our day. Small pleasures mean everything.

Sincerely,
Stephanie


March 1, 2020: 

Dear Justice and Miranda, 

I cannot believe that you are turning fourteen years old today. It truly feels like yesterday that I was holding both of you in my arms together for the very first time. So small, so tiny, so mine. I'm incredibly thankful each and every day for the twin blessings I was fortunate enough to receive exactly fourteen years ago today. Double the diapers, but double the snuggles. Double the colic, but double the love. I've loved watching you both grow, sharing a bond, yet developing such unique personalities. I'm proud of who you have grown to be and am grateful to be your mother. 

Love, Mom

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  1. What a special tribute! And a wonderful way to refelct on what is important in a crazy mixed-up world. Happy birthday Justice and Miranda!

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    1. Thank you, Leigh Anne! It was a quiet, but lovely, day. =)

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  2. What a beautiful love letter to your kids! I hope you save it for them to have later. Happy birthday, Justice & Miranda!

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    1. I love the idea of writing letters to each of them....a writing bucket list item. =)

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  3. What a lovely letter to your twins! The photo is super cute, too! What will you all do to celebrate tonight?

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    1. Thank you! We had a nice quiet dinner at home with A LOT of chocolate cake. =)

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  4. What a collection you will have come March 31st! I love this idea of letter writing as your expression of gratitude. I am curious to see if you will experience a noticeable shift in mindset by the end of the month. I may snag your idea of letter entry during this 31-day course. Thanks for your slice!

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    1. Please do! I'm hoping by the end that I'll be consciously looking for ways to celebrate gratitude every day!

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  5. Love those small pleasures, they go such a long way! Also love it when food places have little treats for furry friends in the drive thru. My dog gets so excited when I go through a drive thru and every once in a while there will be a treat awaiting. Puts a smile on everyone's face!

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    1. I had no idea this was even a thing, but I love they do this!

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  6. I once read that if we can find joy in the pleasure of others, we ourselves will experience joy on a greater level. It looks like you are well on your way! And thank goodness for Starbucks.

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    1. It really has changed the way I look at things. I'm actively seeking these moments out, which is something I did not regularly do before. Thanks goodness for #SOL!

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    1. Thank you! We have four other dogs too, all different sizes, and love them all!

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  8. Sometimes strangers enter your life at just the right time. Under the circumstances I might have burst into tears!

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    1. I almost did, Erica. But I held it together until the car. =)

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  9. Thank you for being such a great mom. If there's one thing that comes through in my reading of your March 3rd post it's that I know you care and I'm grateful they have you. Even though I wasn't the one seeing you in that coat, I'd like to chime in now and say "you're beautiful on the inside and out." I wish you a wonderful day.

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    1. I'm reading this a bit late and it's like I'm reliving that great moment all over again. Thank you!

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  10. Stephanie! I love these little letters. Such a beautiful way to savor the nuggets in life we want never to forget. XX,Nawal

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    1. I think I need a new notebook just for this....and I need a 5 year notebook so I can see and remember them as I turn new pages!

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  11. It's ThanksGiving every day! Bravo!

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  12. Such a beautiful letter! It's so important to remember that we never know what someone might going through at any given moment.

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    1. There was a poem that was posted at a local store I frequent about never knowing and acting according. If I can find it, I'll post it!

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  13. This letter so beautifully describes the impact a stranger can have on a person's life. I love the way you wove in all the ways in which you needed him that day. You became so vulnerable and honest for the sake of your writing piece. I could feel your heartache especially in this line, "You didn’t know that I was at the store not just to get what I needed to make dinner for my family, but to literally get out of my house to get a break." Beautiful piece.

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  14. Stephanie. I'm so glad to see we are in the same space again. I had to laugh when I arrived on your blog to find you talking about a monthly word. I loved this idea when it brushed past me as we left 2020 (wasn't too sad about that). I decided to choose one word, but I love the way you have selected a new word and action. You keep me thinking for sure. I really love your idea to hold onto something in the last 24 hours. I have been thinking a lot about the little things that seem to go unnoticed yet make all the difference in a day. Sometimes it is funny the way we bump into thinking at just the right time.

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    1. Me and my monthly words! I think gratitude has been my best yet...and this challenge has been the perfect way to keep it front of mind and celebrate!

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  15. I love how life turns out like that...bringing exactly what you need when you need it! :) Hope tomorrow's better.

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  16. Your letter writing structure adds so much. It seems to show you care so much, you just have to write to say so. Thanks for reminding me to look for reasons to be grateful.

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  17. Hi Stephanie!! Love this sweet note of gratitude to your daughter- and the little things she did for you. Little things build to big things. Xox Nawal

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  18. Thank you for sharing this letter to your daughter. What a special young lady she is and what a beautiful bond you two must have. I just love how she brought you a new cup of coffee and the way you wrote about how she tiptoed down and slipped the new cup in, wow. Beautifully written!

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    1. Thank you, Dana! I'm a lucky mom, for sure!

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  19. I love learning from others...it's great that you have such a supportive cohort of people. :)

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  20. I love the idea of writing letters of gratitude to those and the things you are grateful for. It sounds like your daughter has a sweet heart in addition to being observant.

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  21. Your daughter is a treasure! I'm sure she learned it from you. :)

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  22. Love how you are using a letter for each of your posts - such a great way to think about audience. What a wonderful surprise your egg whites gave you this morning! I always wonder if I would notice these small things if I didn't commit to writing for 31 days.

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    1. You know, it's really helped me focus not only on the little things, but on my writing voice. I'm finding my other writing is benefitting, too, from emails and blog posts to the things I'm willing to try from a new perspective. =)

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  23. I love this idea! And how awesome to notice and appreciate the small things in life. I think I need to add this egg white post to my mentor writings!

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    1. This might be my favorite letter so far: so unexpected and I actually took the time to capture it!

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  24. How beautiful to have found yourself able to catch that fleeting moment of significance. I, too, share your love for egg whites. May you continue your journey of finding joy in the little things.

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  25. I am really enjoying your letters! I am going to have to try writing a letter to something ordinary, like egg whites! or something extraordinary, too! Thank you for sharing your slices! Gratitude is a great word!

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  26. Thank you for this slice and for sharing your gratitude letter idea. I am going to try this myself! I am curious as to how much of a mindset shift will take place for me. As someone else said, it will at least result in a wonderful collection of letters.

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    1. Yes! As I look back on all the notes gathered together, I can't help but smile. Gratitude really is an instant mood booster!

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  27. I will have to be on the lookout for that hashtag -- not getting on social media as much with my broken arms these days. Still loving the letter structure.

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  28. I love your plan of writing gratitude letters. I keep a gratitude journal and I really should pull some things out of there and turn to letter format. Great idea. You're also giving me the push I need to get back to Twitter- it's a great place to keep current in the profession and I need to use it more.

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    1. Yes! If you need any suggestions, just let me know!

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  29. As I read your letter was reminded of the importance of community and the support we are offered through the people within that community. How awesome that you have this!

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  30. What a unique partnership! I can just see the amusement one would get from watching these moments play out.

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  31. What a cute guy! He's figured out how to get what he wants. :)

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  32. I've just read through several of your letters - what a lovely way to spend March: looking for gratitude and writing little letters. I liked today's (March 9) because I had the same feeling this morning when I walked out: what was cold mere months ago feels warm today. A good thing to remember.

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  33. Another step has been taken. Like for the one that came and went and others to come, the moment is appreciated as it should be.

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  34. What a beautiful tribute to your boy! That ability to drive is an added rung on the ladder of freedom. I can feel your mixed emotions as you see your son take this next rung.

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  35. I can imagine that's a scary feeling for a parent!!

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  36. Big Magic is one of my favorite books. I’ve recommended it to many and try to practice grabbing creativity at the moment of inspiration.

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  37. Filling your life with little yesses that lead to Big Magic - this is a good lesson to take from this book along with many others. I think you should send this thank you letter to Elisabeth Gilbert.

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    1. Your comment inspired me! I had reworked the letter to become part of my Goodreads review and tagged her in it. Thank you!

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  38. You have so beautifully relayed the impact this book had on you, all the way down to, "Creatively Yours" in your closing. That idea of small yesses leading to a life well lived seems romantic. I love that the small changes we make intentionally are really what pave the way to living intentionally. This line made me smile, "When I turned the last page, I felt a tingly sensation through my whole body, a giddiness that I now knew was the feeling when inspiration arrives and an idea is knocking on your door." I can't wait to see what inspiration and ideas unfold for you!

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  39. I'm reading that book right now. This is a wonderful reflection.

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  40. I know what you mean about not feeling creative in the traditional sense. I have often felt like that, but then come to realize that creativity comes in many forms. Your letter to the author really conveyed your passion about the book!

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    1. I absolutely loved it and am already looking at things differently. I really see her ideas about ideas in action! =)

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  41. Glad you were able to find a safe alternative for your non-caffeinated coffee fix! You could be like me and just switch to tea. :)

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  42. That coffee ritual is magical to me too. I appreciated the way you laid out your challenges and efforts in finding the right match for you in your letter. It helped me understand the significance when you finally found the one! It appears as though there will be a happy ending after all!

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    1. I think so! I'm enjoying a cup right now! =)

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  43. This is the first time I came across your blog and I think its a great idea to use March as a way to express gratitude. I love the paean to your sofa and the “thank you for your continued silent support “ line was very funny to me somehow.
    I do notice that somehow your blog is putting all your entries as a single blog post, so all your comments are lumped together. I dk if this is something you want to change or not.

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    1. Yes! I am purposefully capturing them on one long post so I can easily scroll through them each day. It takes only a minute, but does wonders for a great start to the day!

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  44. I love the thank you to your couch. It has me looking around my house to see what I might need to thank!

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    1. I agree! I added another today about my dishwasher. I love that gratitude can help us think differently about the world around us, even inanimate objects!

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  45. Ode to the couch! Certainly deserving of a thank you.

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  46. As someone who HATES washing dishes yet has lived in countries where dishwashers aren't really a thing for the past decade, I know how you must feel. It's such a shock to the system! Glad you're getting it back soon!

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  47. Such a good point! We really don't miss something until it's gone. If your dishwasher could speak, I bet it would express appreciation for your gratitude. :)

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  48. I love this process and what a good way to look back. I just said the other night how grateful I am for my dishwasher, even though I enjoy washing most dishes by hand.

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  49. Love that you are sticking with letter writing all month -- that is not easy to do. Dishwasher ... yup right up there with washer/dryer!

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  50. It's great that you have a support network for coaching!

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  51. Those summer nights without ice cream would be like winter without snow! Not having the ritual last year may make this year's ritual all the more sweet!

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  52. I love your slicing project to write letters of gratitude (big fan of epistolary novels and projects here as well). I really regret that I didn't invest in a pair of blue light glasses at the beginning of the year. Eyestrain is real this year!

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  53. I've always wondered what blue light glasses would be like. I have prescription glasses, so I can't use them. Glad they are working for you!

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    1. I do too! I added the blue-light option to my current lens and it helps!

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  54. True confession: I didn't even know about blue-light glasses and am glad I do now - the eyestrain is real. I love the word gratitude; looking though this lens (if you will) changes everything, bringing layers of comfort as well.

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  55. As a fellow wearer of glasses (since the third grade) I feel that sense of gratitude. What a life-changing invention!

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  56. I love the letters you write to the people and things in your life. I love that you have been consistent with this form for the month.

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  57. Your letter to your Pilates teacher hit home. My trainer is zooming into my living room 3 days a week. We met en-mask and twelve feet apart in a parking lot until it got too cold. Ready to be back outside with my workout community. They are life giving!

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  58. Hannah at Moving Mango, come into my life! I've been told multiple times, "your health is your greatest wealth." I have never known that to be more than in the past twelve months. This letter hit home as fitness is super important to me as well.

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  59. That journal project looks like a lot of fun! I haven't journaled in a long time...but I've been wanting to get back into it.

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  60. These people are all so lucky to have you in their lives. You're amazing. I write letters, actual letters, to my friends. I know they appreciate it. I love doing it. Thanks so much for sharing these beautiful posts.

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  61. I wish I was an early riser too!

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  62. I am realizing the importance of that time in the morning, far too late in life. It has honestly just recently become a priority for me. I love this line, "But now, you ensure that I'm the person I want to be for those around me." So true.

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  63. Your letter to the virus was refreshing. I wonder if we all will have the ability to see every day events from a thicker lens of gratitude in lieu of the pandemic. Thanks for offering up this perspective!

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  64. Little things in life sometimes make a difference.

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  65. Oh my gosh, what a delightful collection. Each letter of gratitude could have been a slice of its own.
    I too am in awe of the wonderful connections we can build on Twitter. It has been some of my best professional development.
    I absolutely adore the photo of your puppy with your fridge priceless!

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  66. I am very grateful for Twitter as well--such a source of rich learning and connections!

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  67. Tennis. Now that’s a tough sport to master. I was introduced to tennis when my husband and I started dating. I sucked then and I am not any better now! It sounds like the tennis ball performs an even more function with your beloved four-legged friend.

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  68. *more important function... oops!

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  69. Oh, clean laundry. I do love it too! The fresh scent is all I need in my life to bring some calm.

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  70. “The fabric of our lives.” That says a lot right there. The contrast of an active day and then the quiet of household chores is beautiful.

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  71. I love this format you chose. I was intrigued with laundry because I wrote of that today too. Your thank you notes are heartfelt and real, I loved so many of them - to the couch, the kind gentleman in the grocery store, your decaf coffee. Maybe I will borrow this idea for next March’s SOL challenge! Thank you

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  72. Love your letters, especially the one to the tennis ball. My dog Memphis liked to carry his bone with him on walks, just to keep an eye on it, I suppose. I loved the letter to the gluten-free chocolate cake and crisp weather. I will return later today to reread. I just started keeping a gratitude journal again, and I have found new inspiration here. Thank you!

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  73. Here’s to seeing more little girls dancing down the sidewalk. We all need that inspiration!

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  74. There truly is something about seeing the joy in a small child that melts away stress and exhaustion. During the pandemic I’ve been fixated on photos friends post of their babies for all the reasons you celebrate the little girl dancing across the street. Now your words dance w/ and for her.

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  75. Such a beautiful tribute ... hold him tightly. These years go so quickly. I think I'll go write my boys a letter and send it off to college. Thanks for the inspiration.

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  76. This letter of gratitude to the TWT is the perfect way to end this challenge. I like how you purposed your writing around gratitude, and how it fueled your Slices each day. Gratitude and JOYs are imperative in shifting one's mindset. I believe writing is as well.

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  77. Reading your final post I thought about how different processes work for different people. I don’t think I could write about only one thing or in one genre, but I’m going to think about it as a possibility for next year. On my way to the comments section I noticed your letter about “Big Magic.” I need to read “The Signature of all things” I love the Elizabeth Gilbert books I have read. Hope to see you on Tuesdays.

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