Three Trees

In a year filled with unforeseen life changes, it feels comforting to have one tradition that remains the same. Below is a story I originally wrote about in 2016 after downsizing a home of many years. I have since updated and added a picture of the original tree, with the star on top, which I was very happy to recently find. And, if you read to the end and you’re wondering, the two small trees are still up and decorated all year long. 🙂

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The story of the two Christmas trees began when my son was about three. He asked if we could leave the tree up until his Birthday at the end of February so the kids coming to the party could put his Birthday presents underneath the tree. I loved our artificial tree and all our ornaments, so I said yes. I mean, what a great idea, and why not?!

Little did I know at the time, this would became our tradition for many years. We would put our tree up just before Thanksgiving and take it down at the end of February after his Birthday party. The kids attending the party loved putting the presents underneath the tree; however, their parents thought it was a bit strange that we still had our Christmas tree up and decorated.

Over the years, we received many funny looks from visitors entering our home and seeing the Christmas tree up and fully decorated in our front window. This especially happened as we found ourselves naturally moving into keeping the tree up all year long. We knew it was very unusual, but it was our tradition, and we were happy with it.

As my son grew up, no longer having Birthday parties where kids brought presents, it was never a consideration to take the tree down. It had become a very normal part of our home that we loved. In addition, our tradition of keeping the tree up all year long, took some stress out of the holiday season. Because, as anyone who has put up and taken down a tree knows, it can be very time consuming!

The tree was filled with so many memories – family ornaments that had been passed down from earlier generations, handmade kids ornaments, and newer ones that were occasionally added. It wasn’t until we prepared to move and stage our home to sell that we took the tree down. The event was surprisingly anti-climatic. I did find it nice that my son, who had asked to keep the tree up for his Birthday many years before, was there to help.

I now believe the tree, and all the ornaments, are making many people just as happy as they did for our family. Because part of selling our home was downsizing and simplifying our lives, which meant passing the tree and the majority of the ornaments onto other families. My favorite ornaments were saved and are now what decorate the two small trees pictured. These trees are now displayed in our apartment home, and of course are both up all year long, because that’s our tradition!

Enjoy the holiday season, your tree(s) and whatever unique traditions you and your family have. 🎄🌟❤️

Until next time, Laura Li Lifestyle

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Imagine

I recently had the completely enjoyable opportunity to relax on a lounge chair, shaded by a grass umbrella, looking out at the Gulf of Mexico. The sky was mostly clear and there was a warm breeze creating a calm and peaceful feeling within me. In the background I could hear waves hitting the beach and a radio playing a variety of classic songs sung by South American artists. I tuned into Imagine, a favorite by John Lennon, and really heard the words – as an American in Mexico, surrounded by people from different countries, cultures and backgrounds – all enjoying the same thing in that moment.

“Imagine there’s no countries… It isn’t hard to do… Nothing to kill or die for… And no religion, too… Imagine all the people… Living life in peace… You, you may say I’m a dreamer… But I’m not the only one… I hope someday you will join us… And the world will be as one.”

#dreamsdocometrue

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Denver Botanic Gardens – Fall 2020

Some of my favorite spots and images from the Denver Botanic Gardens – Fall 2020. Nature is so inspiring! 🌿💚

Until next time, Laura Li Lifestyle

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Change

In the midst of life changes, I am transitioning into something new. Enjoy these beautiful and inspiring locations at The Denver Botanic Gardens. 🌸🌿🌼

Until next time, Laura Li Lifestyle

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Summer 2020

I am thankful for a summer filled with walks and hikes in the Denver area with great friends! These walks and hikes offered much needed connection and support – vital to my emotional, mental and physical well-being during a time filled with change and transition. Thousands of steps were taken while the conversations covered multiple topics. New destinations were visited, offering fun adventures, along with some unexpected physical challenges which pushed us to get some great work-outs. We saw a variety of bugs, insects, wild flowers and rocks of all shapes and sizes. Many covered with moss and lichen and resembling animals or great works of art (I think one looks like a Picasso). Nature is very inspiring to me. Enjoy my pictures and join the conversation by commenting to let me know how nature inspires you. 🌸🌿💚

Check out my video HERE

Until next time, Laura Li Lifestyle

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Water Lilies & More…

I recently had the pleasure of visiting the absolutely beautiful Denver Botanic Gardens on a perfect summer day and made a video of my favorite sites. I especially love the images of the water lilies with the clouds reflecting in the water and the variety of vibrant colored flowers.

Nature makes me so happy and is truly inspiring! And let’s face it, we need all the inspiration we can get these days. Enjoy my video and all the best to you in some challenging times.

Until next time, Laura Li Lifestyle

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August

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It’s the last day of August and I’m spending some time reflecting on the past month and my continued experience during the pandemic. I wrote a blog about my pandemic experience so far at the beginning of August. I share my experience in an effort to support, encourage and inspire. Check it out HERE.

August started out with a call I didn’t expect. I work in the airline industry and was already taking time off from my loved position as a Customer Service Agent. I had volunteered to take a longer period of time off, mainly in an effort to help preserve jobs. I considered the ups and downs I had experienced so far during the pandemic and reviewed all my options, believing that if I got the call I would say yes, and then find a part-time job to make it work financially. Following my intuition has always worked well for me. That’s not to say I didn’t have some (a lot at times!) stress and anxiety over-thinking my options, but continued to bring my mind back to following my intuition and accepted the additional time off.

Over the past few weeks, and especially the past few days as I’ve scrolled down my Facebook feed and checked work emails, I’ve seen numerous pictures, videos and messages of grateful good-byes from those retiring and optimistic see-you-laters from those taking an extended period of time off. The number of heartfelt messages has been somewhat difficult and emotional to see, with thousands company-wide making a transition that officially starts tomorrow. The current environment is causing many of us to make decisions and changes we wouldn’t have thought necessary, or thought about at all at the beginning of the year. These decisions leading to change and transition come with weighing countless pros and cons. They require much thought and are rarely easy. Pushing us to utilize and dig deep into our skills of patience, perseverance and resilience.

To everyone in my Southwest Airlines family who has made the decision to retire early or take an extended period of time off – and to those who will continue to work on the front-line every day to keep our beloved airline running well, I wish each and every one of you all the best! I’ve missed seeing many of you on a regular basis and look forward to being back at work when air travel is busier. I am incredibly thankful and proud to be a part of such an amazing family that is genuinely supportive and loving! ❤️💙💛

To everyone who’s taking steps towards what’s next on their path, I encourage you to practice self care along the way. The above picture is a path I recently hiked and represents me practicing self care and perseverance in the midst of change and transition on my path. Nature offers me endless inspiration!

Until next time, Laura Li Lifestyle

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The Beach

I’m sharing three of my favorite beach pictures in honor of National Beach Day – 8/30/20.

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The beach is one of my absolute favorite places to spend time – walking, relaxing and practicing self care. This is one of my favorite beach pictures from San Diego, CA in March 2019. If you know me well, you know why I love this picture – the thick coat of bright green moss covering the rocks! 💚

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I took this picture in the summer of 1989 on The Algarve – the southern coast of Portugal. It was absolutely beautiful! I can still remember standing on the beach, looking at the ocean view, and thinking to myself that I’d be back someday. I look forward to someday being soon! 💛
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Enjoying a nice dinner under a covered patio while watching the sunset in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico – May 2019. ❤️
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Dear Today

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Dear Today,
I had such a great time visiting places I hadn’t been in years and showing them to a friend.👭 We walked up (and down) a lot of steps, 🏃🏻‍♀️hiked a few miles, ate lunch in the shade, stood on the 💚grass💚 with bare feet to ground ourselves, and ended the day at Sonic for cold drinks and tater tots.😋 All while getting caught up and having good quality conversations!❤️😎
P.S. Yesterday, you know I needed this. And Tomorrow… you have A LOT to live up too! SO thankful!🙏
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Why Journal

Journals

Let’s have a conversation about journaling and why I’ve mentioned it and promoted it many times. Watch my Why Journal YouTube video HERE.

In February of 2020, I am very proud to say that I published my Journal – Self Care Conversations On The Path, a tool to support you as you create your best lifestyle focused on self care. The Journal includes twenty-two Self Care Conversations and journal prompts, which I believe is a big part of why the Journal offers value.

My definition of Journaling is: To journal is the process and practice of writing down your thoughts, feelings and ideas. This includes goals and dreams and the actions steps needed to reach them.

The main experience and benefits I’ve received from journaling are:

The process of journaling has supported me in thinking and working through my thoughts, feelings and ideas on countless occasions. Especially in the last few years when I’ve experienced a lot of changes and life transitions.

The process of journaling has helped cement and commit me to the next steps and necessary actions to reach desired results, goals and dreams.

Journaling has proven to be a very valuable and powerful practice for me! 🙂

Check out my YouTube review of The Journal HERE.

Purchase The Journal – Self Care Conversations On The Path HERE.

Until next time, Laura Li Lifestyle

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