Come Celebrate with Me

With a bit of curiosity I opened the envelope. Inside held a colorful invitation with balloons and confetti sprinkled on the front. Hummm, I thought…a birthday party? Honestly, I thought my days of attending birthday parties had long expired.

“Please join us to celebrate Nicolle’s 50th birthday! Shhh…it’s a surprise!

There have been a lot of celebrations lately, milestone celebrations: high school graduations, college graduations, 50th birthday parties, weddings, and anniversaries. In fact, when I think of the word celebration, these are the types of events that come to mind ever so quickly.

But in actuality, celebrations are all around us,! We just need to slow down and take the time to notice. Yes, notice!

Daylilies that have finally bloomed. Sporting their vibrant colors of yellow and orange, celebrating the arrival of a warm summer day.

Birds gathering together, serenading the morning sun, celebrating the arrival of a new day.

A warm, soft breeze that wisps the branches of the willow tree back and forth, back and forth, celebrating the gentle calmness of the lazy afternoon.

Or perhaps the fragrant honeysuckle perfuming the nose, celebrating the delicate smells of a humid summer evening.

Celebrations, a form of noticing. Noticing and leading me to my journal, my writing journal. A place for me to capture, cherish and relive what it is I want to celebrate, what I want to remember. Big celebrations like the surprise 50th surprise birthday party or small celebrations that I encompass just sitting in the quiet presence of nature.

So it is, writing is an invitation. An invitation to celebrate those noticings. Whether it’s big or small, the reward is in the writing just waiting for the writer in you to celebrate all that life has to offer!

Won’t you join me?


This post was originally posted on the #TeachWrite Chat Blog on 7/16/18. Thank you to Jennifer Laffin at Teach Write for asking me to reflect, write, and share.


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It’s time to celebrate the joy!

All You Need To Be a Runner Is…

This was originally posted on Sunday as a guest post to the blog called Reading Teachers Running. Hop on over to Franki & Sara’s blog to check out their running stories.  My ideas were captured from a speech that my daughter’s XC coach gave during the end of season banquet.  Thanks, Coach M! 🙂

All You Need To Be a Runner Is…

Some INSPIRATION:  My mother would have never told you that I would be a runner.  In fact, I would have never told you that I would be a runner.  However, I was inspired by those around me.  I guess it all began with my daughter.  One day she told me she wanted to run and she did. I thought I would give it a try and I lasted a whole TEN minutes.  It was tough, but I stuck with it, taking baby steps for a LOOOOOONG time. It wasn’t until I ran my first 5k that I considered myself a runner.  My family, my friends, and complete strangers cheering me on inspired me to keep on going.  In turn, I have inspired others to give it a try or keep on going.  Who inspires you?  Who do you inspire?

The MOTIVATION: Running buddies are the best motivators.  They motivate you through the good, the bad, and the ugly. They push you to be your best, they celebrate your accomplishments with you, and they get you through those running trials and tribulations.  There is nothing better than the running community for motivation.  Actually, I think runners might be a part of a secret cult!  Before I was a runner, I would see these magnets on cars that said 26.2 or 13.1 and I had no idea what that even meant.  Now I can’t go out without seeing magnets, magnets everywhere or a runner here and a runner there. Oh!  And, don’t forget about Twitter!  #runteacherrun motivates me when I am running buddyless!  What motivates you? What do you do to motivate other runners?

A lot of DETERMINATION: I love the saying, “Quitters never win and winners never quit”. This is definitely true in the running world.  Yes, there are going to be days when physically your body is tired or even injured!  And, there will be days when mentally you just want to quit and you doubt your abilities. So, you take a break, but you are determined to get right back at it. My hubby always tells me that the mind controls the body; the body doesn’t control the mind.   How determined are you?

Much DEDICATION: Of course I have another saying for you, “Failure to plan is planning to fail!”  Dedicated runners have some kind of plan or goal.  Whether it is a time, a pace, or a specific distance, being dedicated will help you keep on going!  For me, signing up for a race helps me stay a dedicated runner.  I always follow a training plan for a 1/2 or full marathon, but I can pretty much “wing it” for 5k races 🙂  What kind of plan can you devise to keep you dedicated to running?

An ADMIRATION for other runners:  I truly love to hear running stories of other runners.  How did you begin? How long have you been running?  What kind of pace do you run?  Where do you like to run? I admire anyone who is out there running! As Lebow said,  “It doesn’t matter if you come in first, in the middle of the pack, or last.  You can say that you finished and there is a lot of satisfaction in that.”  What do you admire in other runners?

Well, the laces are tied, the Under Armor is on, the Garmin is ready to go, and the iPod is charged…it’s a great day for a run! So, if you are looking for some inspiration, motivation, determination, dedication, and admiration please join Twitter at #runteacherrun.  It’s all you need to be a runner!

Last but not least, I would love to hear your running story.  You can find me on Twitter @RunReadMom, or visit my blog at

Happy Running,

Amy 🙂

All You Need To Be a Runner Is...

All You Need To Be a Runner Is…