My Not So Perfect But Fabulous Life

using my big words to inspire… & hopefully make a difference

It’s Been a While… November 12, 2010

Filed under: Uncategorized — MDunbar @ 7:50 pm

I started blogging in January and was consistent for about a month. So much for good habits only take 27 days. I have so many things that have come up since January. Sean has settled into a new job. I lost my dad in April. LD is in High School now. Wow. RIght now I am breathing. Trying to slow down and focus which I think is what started this blog for me anyway.

I allowed things that are unimportant to fill my life. Extra projects that don’t inspire me like they should. I have been saying yes far too often which is a huge weakness for me. Things are getting better though and will continue to do so as long as I can maintain my focus. So here goes! More of My Not So Perfect But Fabulous Life!

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Guidance January 28, 2010

Filed under: Friends,Hope,letting go,parenthood,Uncategorized — MDunbar @ 4:05 pm

A helping hand to guide us makes all the difference!

 

I never knew how difficult life would be at times. My parents have been together for almost 50 years. I watched them interact, dad the provider, mom the disciplinarian. They had their arguments (they were the parents that silently argued. If the house was quiet,  there was trouble.) but for the most part, everything seemed easy. My Dad made a great living and none of us wanted for anything.  

I had no idea that they were shielding us from the stress and at times frustration that is parenting!  I have worked very hard to let go of worrying but it still creeps up on me. I have said it before, my girlfriends keep me grounded and somewhat sane. Something that Sean and I didn’ t have was someone to help guide us. Someone who had been there before to give us advice. By the time I was married my parents had issues with health problems and Sean’s mother passed away a few months before we met. None of our parents explained budgets, parenting during difficult times or how to get through the tough places on our own marriage.  

We have since made friends that are older and wiser than we are. Experience is the best teacher and if someone has been where you are, let them tell you what they did, whether they failed or not, so that you can learn from that. There have been many instances in my life where the person taught me exactly what not to do but I remembered what they went through, or the pain they caused those around them, and I knew that I didn’t want to cause that kind of pain. We need people in our lives to help guide us. Whether it is a pastor at your church, a teacher at your school or a friend that has been around the block, so to speak. It is important to know that no matter what, we aren’t alone. We aren’t the first to experience life and we won’t be the last. It is just comforting to know that no matter what life gives us, we can depend on those around us to help us through the tough times.  

Who in your life helps to guide you? Who is your go-to person that is always there for you?  

SOmething I always thought was a beautiful concept was this: The word Guidance means we are guided by something. I feel that God guides me and in that we are in a realtionship together.  

Guidance = God U and I DANCE!

 

Guidance means God U and I DANCE!

 

Authentic January 27, 2010

Filed under: Being Positive,Friends,husbands,Uncategorized — MDunbar @ 7:16 pm

The only normal people are the ones you don’t know very well. Joe Ancis

Like it or not, I have pretty much been who I am all of my life. I am the cheesy, blue skies, silver lining kind of girl. I love giving back and helping others achieve something of importance and I truly love people. These things come easily to me but often my feelings get hurt because I get too emotionally vested or someone is just mean. I don’t understand why there are women out there who thrive on talking down or making others feel bad. I guess that is why growing up, I always had more guy friends. My husband is my best friend. He knows me so well and accepts me for the crazy person I am.

I am also incredibly blessed to have some really close girlfriends that I can’t even tell you how important they are to me. The commonality that we have is we are all strong-willed, honest folks. None of us pretend to be anything we are not, for better or for worse. It is so freeing to live this way. We are authentic, and can be completely crazy at times, but no matter what, we are honest and supportive of one another. I owe so much to these special women. I don’t know where I would be without them.

This part of the book is about living intentionally. Miller says there are three things to help us get back to who we really are. Our authentic selves.

  1. Reveal: a part of us to others. Let others know that we aren’t perfect.
  2. Respond: Listen with our hearts and respond with actions.
  3. Relax: Get comfortable. Let down the barriers that prevent us from being real.

I can tell you that even though some are put off by the fact that I have no pretenses and am totally honest about who I am, I would rather live with who I am and know that person, than lose myself in a persona that wasn’t real. One of my favorite characters is Elle Woods from Legally Blond. She is very “Malibu Barbie” but she knows who she is, she is genuinely nice to everyone, and she is truly authentic. The confidence in who she is makes her so likable and her attitude in infectious. Even those who ridicule her come to love her for her supportive, friendly ways.

“Believing in yourself never goes out of style.” Elle Woods

Life is too short and I want to be present in ever aspect. C.S. Lewis said it best, “We are what we believe we are.”

Who are you?

 

A Cheerful Giver January 20, 2010

Filed under: Give Back,Hope,Joy,Uncategorized — MDunbar @ 7:00 am

In response to yesterday’s post about volunteering and giving back, here are a few suggestions to help you determine where you need to spend your time/money, both very valuable resources.

In Miller’s Book, a few of her suggestions are:

  • “What do you want to see changed in your lifetime?                                               
  • What are your passions?
  • Can you link your passions to what bothers you?
  • Can the organization, given time and money, effect the change?”

These are questions that will help you decide on where you want to give back and it makes a huge difference in your attitude if you actually care about the good works you are doing! I know all too well of the good friend who needs help on a project or donation for a cause they love. I have given our of guilt and later felt a let down because it wasn’t MY passion. My time and money are both valuable commodities in my life. When I give either of these, I make sure it is something I am passionate about and I can’t tell you how good it feels. You can make a difference, just step out in faith and do it! If you can’t find a charity or program to support (I personally think you haven’t looked hard enough. There are a million worthwhile causes out there!) you can actually start your own!

The next time you give to a cause, a cause of YOUR OWN choosing, give cheerfully and know that you are doing your part to make this place a better world.

Here are a few unique gift ideas that keep on giving:

  1. Throw a party and instead of gifts, all donations go to the charity of your choice!
  2. Have a party at an animal shelter where guests help wash the animals and give them a prime adoption look.
  3. Donate an animal through Heifer Project International, to a 3rd World Country to help them become more self reliant! My brother-in-law was single at the time and we bought a “chick” and donated it in his name!http://www.heifer.org/site/c.edJRKQNiFiG/b.204586/
  4. Purchase a “Good Card” at http://www.sixdegrees.org/ and the recipient can give that amount to the charity of his or her choice! How cool?!?
  5. Help the victims of Haiti by visiting http://www.redcross.org/ 
 

My Theme Song! January 19, 2010

Filed under: Uncategorized — MDunbar @ 9:19 pm

Preach on sistah! Preach on!

 

Change A Life

Filed under: Give Back,Hope,Uncategorized — MDunbar @ 10:24 am

Under the bridge Ministries: Feeding the homeless one meal at a time.

 

Today’s reading is focused on philanthropy. This I know a lot about because I have been active in so many non-profits. I volunteer because I find it fulfilling and because I feel like it is our duty to give what we can to make this world a better place. I have been at a point in the past where I was doing way too much. One thing that caused me to pause was that I was volunteering  out of a sense of obligation rather than passion. Not so much recently though. Due to family issues I had to back off from everything. I took a year off. I am slowly getting back into volunteering. I am committed to helping the homeless thanks to some very dear folks at our church. I go on mission trips as often as I can. I am helping the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation raise funds for research. I donate artwork, calligraphy and other things as I can.  

I encourage everyone to find one thing that you are passionate about and get involved. There are so many great causes out there that I am sure you can find a place to use your talents. Whether it is time, money or talent, use what God has given you to make an impact on this world. You never know what life you might impact and I assure you, you will feel the blessings ten fold!

 

A Tisket, A Tasket, There’s too Much in My Basket January 12, 2010

Filed under: Uncategorized — MDunbar @ 7:05 pm

What is in your basket?

Miller continues on the theme of “Spread Too Thin” with a great point that we have touched on. She says, “I’m afraid we often confuse being busy with being fulfilled;  we have placed more value on doing more than doing with excellence; and we have aligned our days with being productive than living with purpose.”

I am conflicted with that. I do believe that at times, I place value on being productive. It is in my nature to want to do the best job I can at something and I have a very strong work ethic instilled in me by my father. However, when I read Miller’s words I realize that my days are all scheduled. I say it is out of necessity. I have a husband who coaches several teams, two children active in sports whose social calendar would put the President to shame and then there is me. Maybe it is neurotic BUT I color code my schedule: Sean-Orange, Me-Purple (work related is red), LD-Blue, KD-Pink. It makes it easier to see who is doing what where. I don’t fill my schedule to be busy, I fill my schedule with family, church and work obligations. I have narrowed it down to two things in life, it has to strengthen my family or it has to bring me closer to God.Friends are in there as well. God knows that I couldn’t live without them and I am so incredibly blessed to have some really great friends.

I can multi-task like nobody’s business but over the past two years it is something I have tried to whittle away, the unnecessary stuff. I am really just trying to keep my basket as light as it can be because you never know what you have to pick up along the way.