Monthly Archives: April 2015

Week #32 – “Where do all the socks go?” (I declare Orphaned Socks Week!)

April 24-30: Orphaned Sock Week!  (photo and socks credit: Grace Church)

Not a match to be found!  (photo credit: Grace Church)

Week #32 – “Where do all the socks go?”  (I declare Orphaned Socks Week!)

I have a confession…I had to wear the same pair of socks two days in a row this week.  And no…it wasn’t because I hadn’t done laundry.  It was because out of over two dozen individual socks…I can only find ONE matching pair!

I buy brightly colored, flourescent, argyle, printed, or polka dot socks for a reason…so that I can find them!  They stand out among the piles of black clothing in my laundry (apparently black is my favorite color)…and I can easily spot them in places they don’t belong (like the underwear drawer, the bed, the car, the refrigerator, or wherever else my socks seem to disappear!)

And yet…still more often than not…I cannot find a matching pair.  It has me recalling a question that Rob asked me jokingly in the week before he died:

“Where do all the socks go?”

Just ten days before his beautiful spirit would leave this earth…Rob was sorting laundry.  He stood in his bedroom matching socks into pairs and folding them neatly (I mean VERY neatly) to put them away.  Holding one little shorty in his hand, with not a mate to be found, he looked at me and asked in a puzzled tone: “Where do all the socks go, Grace?  Where do they go?”

Honestly…I have no idea!

But the bigger question remains…what do we do with the ones left behind?!

Your assignment for this week: I declare Orphaned Socks Week!  Flip-flop season is right around the corner…let’s give those sock orphans one last chance to be the footwear they were meant to be!  If you have orphaned socks in your drawer, I dare you to join me in wearing mismatched pairs this last week of April!  Will anyone notice?  Will anyone care?  Is there some secret to Happyness that lies just beyond the dryer door to where the socks go?!  Post your pictures, tell your stories, share your experiences!

But most of all…SpreadHappyness!  Let your mismatched socks be an introduction, a conversation piece, or a jumping-off point to the age-old question:

“Where do all the socks go?!”

4/24/15 by Grace Church
© Grace Church

Week #31 – “Honoring & Remembering…”

"Honoring & Remembering..." (photo credit: Granny Church)

“Honoring & Remembering…” (photo source: unknown)

Week #31 – “Honoring & Remembering…”  (Who can you 

A former Sunday school friend contacted me last week to let me know she had donated Easter flowers to her church to decorate the sanctuary for Easter Sunday.  She included a photo of the bulletin where Rob’s name was listed — and she wrote to me, “just my way of honoring & remembering your brother this Easter…”

It was one of the most beautiful and reassuring things I’ve received.  I hadn’t asked her to do it or made a plea or mentioned it would be nice — she just remembered him, acted on it, and shared it with me.  It brought me such comfort to know that we are not alone in our remembering…others are remembering too.

We hear the word “remember” a lot…it’s associated with significant world events, with our veterans, with parents or family members, and even with pets.

So, what’s the importance of “Remembering?”

I don’t really have an answer for this one today.  I just know that grief or trauma or loss or tragedy can leave individuals in very lonely places.  To have someone just acknowledge the gap can mean so much.  It has me thinking about ways I can do better…remembering the silent scars of others, celebrating a life, sharing a memory, or contributing to a donation or memorial.  To let someone else know that they are not alone…that I was there.  That I remember, too.

Your assignment for this week: “Honor & Remember” someone or something this week!  Make a donation, plant a tree, buy a booster for your local athletic team or drama club, leave a note, place a stone, or send a card.  Take action in the name of someone or something else…then SpreadHappyness and let someone know about it!  Let someone know they are not alone…that you were there, you saw it, experienced it, and remember it…too!

SpreadHappyness — take action “honoring and remembering” this week!  

(And tell us about it in the comments!)

4/17/15 by Grace Church
© Grace Church

Week #30 – What is your “Always…” ?

"Always..." (Photo credit: Grace Church)

“Always…” (Photo credit: Grace Church)

Week #30 – What is your “Always…” ?

As I continue to sort through all the comments, cards, texts, and emails about Rob…there are a few words that get repeated over and over again.  One of them is “Always…”

And after I think about Rob, I can’t help but wonder…what will people remember about me?

It’s easy to think about the good things people might say…but it’s harder to think about the stuff that stings a bit.  I often hear I’m “always practical”, “level-headed”, “reliable”, and “consistent.”  Well that’s great…for everyone else!  But sometimes I want to be the wild, crazy, funny free spirit instead!  😉

Rob himself used to tell me all the time, “Grace…you’re always working.”  It wasn’t a compliment.  He wanted me to come out and play!

(And it’s a stingy reality to wish now that I had!)

Perhaps the stingy reality for you might be “always stressed out” or “always angry” or “always confused”.  (Or worse…maybe “always upbeat” when you don’t always feel that way!)  Well…what do you want to be?

How do YOU want to be remembered?!

“Always _________________”

Your assignment for this week: Identify your “Always…!”  Brainstorm a list of 5-10 things people might say — or better yet, ask some trusted friends for some honest feedback!  Are you happy with these qualities?  GREAT!  Keep living and breathing them!  But if there’s something that stings a bit…look deeper.  “Always busy…” sounds proud, until it comes from your kids or a spouse.  “Always late…” might be a funny anecdote from your parents or siblings, but not from your boss.  “Always taking care of others first…” has a noble ring to it, but perhaps there’s an unspoken cost to you or your family?

If there are things you don’t like…there might be more to YOU than YOU are letting the world know!  Maybe you’ve gotten so used to the person the world is expecting you to be that you forgot who you really are!  Don’t wait for others to tell you…find NEW words that describe the person YOU want to be: maybe it’s “productive”, “balanced”, “creative”, “on-time”, or “self-reliant”!

Pick one new “Always…” and focus on developing it this week!

Spread Happyness — be the living and breathing “Always…” that you want to be!

(And tell us about it in the comments!)

4/10/15 by Grace Church
© Grace Church


Week #29 – “Where to now?” (Happy Spring!)

"Where to now?"  (Photo credit: Grace Church)

(Photo credit: Grace Church)

Week #29 – “Where to now?”  (Happy Spring!)

Spring officially began on March 20th — and the 2nd Quarter began April 1st.  Twelve weeks of the new year have past — that’s one full quarter of 2015 in the books!

Where to now?

It’s a question Rob and I would ask each other on one of those long rambling drives I mentioned in last week’s post.  We’d come to a stopping point — an intersection, a convenience store, or a look at some car Rob wanted to buy — and ask: “Where to now?”

The end of the calendar year is always a natural time to look back at the year behind, and plan for the year ahead.  We hear a lot in December about goal setting, resolutions to end old habits, and promises to start new ones.  Not so much in April though!

But the change of seasons or the beginning of a fresh quarter is a good time to stop, revisit, and re-evaluate our direction.  Are your goals still relevant?  Are you on track to achieve them?  Have you had a life event that mandates a total change in direction?  Or have you achieved some of your goals and need to set new ones?

There’s a nice, even 13 weeks to round out each quarter — and a fresh perspective if you set goals from season to season.  You could think about what you’d like to accomplish by June 30th — or you might consider what you’d like to do this Spring.  There’s been much discussion recently that happiness is not tied to achievement alone — but to the experiences we have along the way.  Don’t let new seasons get lost on the express track to New Year’s Eve!

What would you like to experience or achieve this Spring 2015?

Your assignment for this week: If you have them handy, take some time to revisit your dreams/goals for 2015.  (And if you don’t have them handy, don’t worry — just start fresh with today!)  Ask yourself the tough questions above.  If your goals are still relevant, set some new mini-goals for this next quarter alone: what would you like to achieve by June 30th?  Also, think about the season ahead: what would you like to experience this Spring (before summer vacations, breaks, activities, and visitors take over your calendar)?  Finally — have you achieved some of your goals already?  WONDERFUL!!!  Take time to celebrate!

And then…set some new goals!  I’ve read some interesting material lately about the emotional slack following big or long-sought-after achievements.  Setting new goals or having new experiences on deck is essential to keeping our energy up and forward focused!  (Good advice for graduates, mid-lifers, and retirees alike!)

So…where to now?

Spread Happyness — share your dreams, goals, and celebration in the comments!!!

3/27/15 by Grace Church
© Grace Church