a moment to reflect

you can find me at: @K_AnnM | Insta | LinkedIn

In lieu of Winona State University’s graduation today, I felt it appropriate to look back on the past three years since I graduated.

As I see my friends about to embark on adulthood and leave that safety net we know and love call college I can’t help but to think about my humble beginnings. Graduation was an awesome time. I don’t totally remember the ceremony because our student speaker was a mathematics major and more boring than life, plus the speech should have been mine but apparently I added a little “too much” (is that possible) flare to my speech. I digress; graduation is a time that makes you think. Your future is literally on the line and you have the whole world out there in front of you. Graduation means making your mark on a world much bigger than the one you were confined in for the last 4 years.

To my friends near and far, I want you to reflect. Maybe you graduated today, maybe you graduated years ago, it doesn’t matter the date, take a moment. Take a moment in the coming days to think of the journey you have embarked on. Has it changed? What were the obstacles that have been placed in your path? Did they make your plan change? Is the journey worth it? Is your end game still the same? What’s different? Have you acquired anything of importance along the way?

After posing these questions, how do you feel? Can you still see that light at the end of the tunnel glimmering bright?

For me, nothing has changed when it comes to my end game. Of course I am still trying to figure everything out and I’m trying to put the puzzle pieces together. It is going to take a lifetime for me, or anyone for that matter to fully mold the life that they want. I know where is started and I know where I am going. No doubt there have been massive obstacles that have been put in my way, and I hurdled over them. Remember that we all deal with obstacles differently and all of our journeys are different.

While you are on your journey be cognizant of the people you will meet. Take note of everyone you encounter. The guy who is serving you your morning coffee could turn into your best friend. Old friends could come back into your life. New friends will develop that will last a lifetime. Hold on to the friends who turn into family…those friends are the most important and they’re the ones that will turn your life upside down and make this adventure that we call life so worth it.

Maybe it’s been four years since you’ve graduated and you still don’t know what you want to “be when you grow up”, or maybe you do. Either way, we only get one life so maybe sure you surround yourself with people who will make your journey a wild ride!

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random

acts of kindness

you can find me at: @K_AnnM | Insta | LinkedIn

Random acts of kindness are awesome and they make the world go around. These awesome acts can either spontaneous or planned, and I believe that random acts of kindness are encouraged by various communities. A random act of kindness is a selfless act performed by a person or people wishing to either assist or cheer up an individual person or people. The phrase may have been coined by Anne Herbert, who says that she wrote “Practice random kindness and senseless acts of beauty” on a place mat at a Sausalito restaurant in 1982 or 1983.

Enough with the history, let’s get to the real stuff. Saying goodbye to the weekend and hello to another work week can make Monday feel like a major bummer and it’s never a fun thing to do. Rather than drowning your sorrows in coffee and spreadsheets, give your mood a little boost with random acts of kindness. These acts truly go along way, just like a smile.

So far I am holding a pretty good tally with my acts. Over the weekend, my acts started and I’ve been feeling great about them. After eating lunch, I asked my server to box up my leftovers and  a homeless person (who was my age) came up to me and asked me for my food. Without hesitation, I said yes and handed them over. He must have been starving and really looking for a meal. He was gracious beyond belief and immediately starting eating.

Random acts of  kindness really make you smile. Whatever you are doing today, try to fit in a little nicety.

baseball

you can find me at: @K_AnnM | Insta | LinkedIn

To me, today was the perfect day for a baseball game. Now, that the season of summer is finally here, we have no excuses to be outside (unless that excuse is, it’s too humid). Earlier, I posted about Memorial Day and how we need to recognize the brave men and women who fight for our freedom. On days like this, where we do recognize the courage of others we should take a step back and really think about how great we have it off. Appreciation goes along way. Today, I was at the baseball game, and on several accounts Veterans and our service men and women were recognized and it was breathtaking. Whether it was at a baseball game, an airport or in the grocery store I hope you had the opportunity to show your gratitude towards our freedom and service members.

celebrating mamas

happy mother’s day

you can find me at: @K_AnnM | Insta | LinkedIn

Mother’s day is all about celebrating the one women we can all relate to, mom. A huge Happy Mother’s Day to the women who has always encouraged me to  be different. Mom, you are my friend, my hero, and my number one fan. I am beyond blessed to have you in my life and to call you mama. I hope your day is perfect! I love ya with all of my heart. Screen Shot 2014-05-11 at 9.47.01 AM

thank you

for being my friend

you can find me at: @K_AnnM | Insta | LinkedIn

Here’s a shout out to all of my friends. Now, if you’ve never had the opportunity to watch Golden Girls, I’m sorry.  The Golden Girls is a true American sitcom. Let me give you a little recap, the Golden Girls is based on the lives and interactions of four older women whom have all been divorced/widowed, and are now roommates. One of the main character’s, Dorothy, main goal during the series is to find a companion who she can relate to while her mother Sophia adds her comical outlook and frequents “Picture This” stories.  Another character, Rose, who is from St. Olaf has many cliches which make her a little corny but lovable. One thing that changes nearly every episode is whom the last main character, Blanche, is dating.

This is one of the best American sitcoms that came into our homes. With a great theme song, “Thanks For Being My Friend,” I can’t think of a better way than this to say thanks to my friends.

discipline

alleluia

you can find me at: @K_AnnM | Insta | LinkedIn

Happy Easter! Easter Sunday marks the end of Lent. After 40 days, the discipline and contemplation is over. The wait is over…and I finally devoured some cheese.

Often, during the Lenten season, we give up something — or refrain from doing something, such as consuming meat — but whatever it is, it is supposed to act as a reminder of the hardship Christ endured because of their faith.

At the beginning of the Lenten season, I wrote a blog about Lent and what the season means. You can either read it here, or see the brief synopsis:

 As you can see, Lent is about sacrifice and discipline.  Look at any successful person, the ones who have excelled in their fields, do so because of passion, endurance, and discipline. While each may exhibit unique styles and individual elements, their success ultimately runs parallel to their dedication to the defining disciplines of their field. Discipline, not individual freedom of choice, brings out the most success.

Today is about praise and discipline. As a Wisconsinite, it was a challenge to give up cheese for the 40 days of Lent. Now that the season has ended, I celebrated with cheese  I thank my lucky stars for discipline.

Make today a celebration and however you celebrate, make sure you smile.

compliments

they’re free

you can find me at: @K_AnnM | Insta | LinkedIn

Apparently, there is a National Compliment Day and I missed it.compliments National Compliment Day is January 24, if you were wondering. Though this post isn’t directly about National Compliment Day, it is about compliments, both getting and receiving them.

The Reno-Tahoe International Airport set up a Free Compliments booth to hand out kind words to passengers on January 24. Passengers received compliments on their glasses, colorful scarves and even their boots. I read about one gentleman in particular who was about to pass right by the booth without stopping was told “Sir, what a confident gait you have.”

It just goes to show, even when you are in a hurry, there is always time for a compliment. Today, give out a compliment or two. It will make someone’s day, which is never a bad thing.

a heartwarming surprise

the super bowl

you can find me at: @K_AnnM | Insta | LinkedIn

I was really intrigued after I saw that my sorority, Delta Phi Epsilon, made it on to TSM (Total Sorority Move). After opening the article, I realized it was a truly amazing heartwarming story about the sister of DPhiE (UMich). They surprised their house mom with tickets to the Super Bowl!

These are the things that I miss the most about my undergrad. To me, DPhiE was (and still is) my home away from home. TSM puts it the best: If your sorority house is your home away from home, then your sorority house mom is your momma away from momma. We’re at the age where we start to realize just how nurturing, selfless, and loving (albeit crazy) our mothers are. We’ve also started to realize how we’ve even taken them for granted. Every one in 50 or so times, most of us will try and give back.

When we give back…we really give back. Watch this clip, it will explain the immense gratitude and appreciation I have towards my fellow sisters.

an open letter

[insert your name here]

you can find me at: @K_AnnM | Insta | LinkedIn

Dear You,

As our relationship has progressed you have noticed one motif about my life: go big, or go home. You’re right, I don’t take things lightly and I don’t do them small. If I am going to do something, I commit. With all that being said, my birthday is never a different story. Every few years, the Super Bowl will try to overshadow my special day but I never allow it to do so.

This year, my birthday was wonderful because of you. Celebrating this 24th year is something I will ever forget. Being surrounded by loved ones, receiving phone calls and even the simple smiles truly made the day something special.

Over the years we’ve shared many stories, laughter, drinks and celebrations, but this one was different. This particular birthday celebration encompassed many wonderful aspects of my life. The celebrations this year allowed me to join in all of the tom foolery and showering of love that a birthday should have.

For you, I am grateful. Without you, my birthday would not have been the same. Thank you for the memories we made this weekend. I am looking forward to seeing what my 24th year has in store. I am lucky to have you along for the journey. Once again, thank you. I am so touched and thankful to be blessed by such awesome family and friends!

All My Love,

Kendal Ann