Simple little things.

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So, today in case you live in a box 🙂 OR just don’t live in Wisconsin we are having a major snowstorm. His name is Draco…and we welcomed him in today with open arms. So today, I found it fitting to post about some of my favorite little simple things and not in any particular order because that’s just not how I do life.

#1 SNOW DAYS!!!( when I don’t have to drive anywhere) Hello beautiful fluffy white stuff. It has been so long since you decided to be a freak of nature and drop down on us in mass quantity. Today, I just lay in bed as I watched the flakes keep falling, falling, falling…with no agenda at all for the day. I woke up and drank a cup of tea. We went outside to play in the snow. We made a snowman ( I think this is now our yearly tradition granted we live in a place with snow) and we ate wild rice soup. Some of the little things in life that I am learning I really do appreciate.

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Our snowman last year…Image

Our snowman this year…Image

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#2. This shirt. Are you kidding me? I love it. It’s from my husband. Traveling is in my blood and my heart…and I like to wear my heart on my sleeve. 🙂 I just feel so strongly about traveling. The international kind. I have lived abroad in Fiji and in England. I have this bug that I just can’t shake and now I just call it my heart. I love exploring new places. I love meeting new people. I love it. I LOVE conversations with other travelers and more importantly locals. I love the adventure. I love the unknown. I love that you feel out of your comfort zone. I love that even though as an American I stick out like a sore thumb and that I try to blend in. I love getting lost. I can’t explain it and you won’t get it unless you have traveled abroad, but I love other cultures. I just love those late night conversations and sharing travel stories. I love traveling. Can you tell? This shirt probably won’t come off my back for a long long long time. “Travel more, work less.Life is short…enjoy yourself” Because really, life is so short.

http://mnkr.com/womens_stylepages/travelmoreworkless.html

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( ^^One of my favorite pictures that reminds me to slow down and take life as it comes.)

#3 This soap. It’s called Lush. I have never bought into soaps, expensive perfume, make-up, or clothes. I just would much rather spend it on traveling, live music, good coffee and tea, or books to read on my nook.( I do love when someone gives me that for a gift of course and I envy the girls who are into fashion and all that jazz, it’s just not me.) BUT this soap. Seriously. it is a DREAM.. and I totally believe in the company’s mission statement:

We believe our that our products are of good value, that we should make a profit, and the customer is always right.
We believe in long candle-lit baths, sharing showers, massage, filling the world with perfume and in the right to make mistakes, lose everything, and start again.
We believe in buying our ingredients only from companies that do not commission tests on animals and in testing our products on humans.
We believe in happy people making happy soap, putting our faces on our products, and making our Mums proud.
We invent our own products and fragrances, we make them fresh by hand using little or no preservative or packaging, using only vegetarian ingredients and tell you when they were made.
In making products from fresh *organic* fruit and vegetables, the finest essential oils, and safe synthetics.
*We also believe words like “fresh” and “organic” have an honest meaning beyond marking.”

Ok, so enough about this company. BUT really. It is amazing.

http://www.lushusa.com/Ma-Bar/02151,en_US,pd.html (my fav)

#4 Hugs. Hugs from a 2 year old. Hugs from my husband. Hugs after a good day…and hugs after a bad day. It’s that feeling like for just a second that make it seem like all is right in the world. I just love hugs.

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#5 Being a kid.

It’s the excitement. It’s the joy. It’s the carefree little smiles and lots of laughter. It’s innocence. Kids remind me of the little things in life we take for granted. I love them. It’s one of the many reasons I went to school to be a teacher. I have a lot of little kids who are special to me and who have touched my heart. I have a huge heart for kids and someday I hope to have many of my own. I love chaos. The good kind. The kind kids bring. I love being busy. I love kids. And for anyone who ever told me that are kids are expensive and not to have too many. I love them…and you can’t put a price on happiness…and..well, the overwhelming joy that kids bring.

Some pictures (of some!) of the kids who have changed my life:

Class of kinders who challenged and pushed me to become a better teacher.
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Fijian kiddos who helped me understand all you need is..God and love.

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The girls I nanny… who despite being the cutest duo of double trouble remind me every single day to smile big.

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The kids in the Dominican who reminded me of what little they have and how they are so grateful. They reminded me of the person I want and strive to be…

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My kid sisters…who have grown so fast. Who have shown me what unconditional love is like. Being there first hand when they were born. Memories I will never forget. I helped my parents raise them when they were little. To teach me to care more about others and less about myself. It’s so special to me that I have little sisters with such a big age gap…pretty rare.AND for teaching me the importance of being a good big sister and role model for them. Some of my favorites from the past:

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And here.. on my wedding day with both of them as my flower girls.. pretty special moment showing them my jewelry and having them walk down the aisle before I did.

.. I have so so so many more. BUT for now. These simple little things bring me joy. What brings you joy this Christmas season?

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About Elicia Shepard

I'm unique just like you. I've learned every person has a story which makes us who we are. One minute I am here..then I am gone. Discovering unknown places and people is an addiction I am proud of and will be an endless journey of mine. Smiling is not a pastime it's what I do. I live for moments that take my breath away. Falling in love is the greatest feeling-and the biggest risk. I thrive off of risks.Challenges. Adrenaline rushes. Making others smile. Art is all around and in ourselves. I love taking an unknown path not knowing where it'll lead. Mystery is beautiful. Compassion, kindness, and love- things I will always strive for. Know what you believe in. Stand up for it. Never be afraid to feel. Time waits for no one.Ever. Children inspire me. God fires me. Happiness is being with those you love.I am really blessed. I think God is love and forgiveness and I think he wants us to be good people and love EVERYONE. Figure out who you are and what that means to you-It's one of the greatest gifts you can give yourself (and you deserve it.) Live frugally on surprise. Breathe. Be who you are. Be an outcast...If you wanna find me I will be where the wind blows...Wherever that may take me.

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