Tag Archives: happy

Speaks To Me Sunday #80

9 Jul

Totally guilty of trying to solve my life. I constant find myself wanting to cross EVERYTHING off of my To-Do List in one day. 

But if I cross it all off… what’s left to do? What life is there left to live? I don’t have to solve every problem and conquer every obstacle right this very minute. I don’t have to have everything planned out and perfectly pieced together.

What if I could stop looking at my life as something to solve and instead view it as a pile (an organized one 😉) of wonderful and good things. What if I cared for and nurtured those good things? What if my life grew into something beautiful? 

I love a good To-Do list as much as the next Type-A girl. But even I have to admit that a Christmas-Morning-like pile of all the wonderful things in my life is so much more fulfilling than a crumpled up list of crossed off (or ya know… rewritten again and again) problems and worries.

So, one at a time. I want to build my pile of good things. Now I just have to decide what will I add to the pile first. 

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Speaks To Me Sunday #67

2 Oct


I’ve been having some bad days lately… Upsetting moments happen, and I can’t seem to shake it.

Honestly? Sometimes I don’t want to. (Oh, how hard that is to say.) I am choosing to sit in it… Simmering and seething in my anger, sadness, worry, shame… Whatever emotion brought about by a single instance. I want to wallow in it. Total pity party.

Why? 

My ego. My ego feels so good when I am right… And I don’t mean my ego like a place of self confidence or worth. I’m talking about that small, but clear voice in my head that says “you are right.” My ego wants me to be right no matter the cost – even if that means my actions end up hurting me… Or even sometimes others. 

I am right to be angry because this person did me wrong, I am right to be sad because that didn’t work out how I wanted, I am right to be ashamed because no one else would have made that mistake. 

It’s so easy to listen to my ego. But my ego is also a liar capable of robbing me of happiness for an entire day. Who wants to live like that? Who would choose that. The price of “being right” is far too high. Truth? My life is not made better by listening to my ego and sinking into negativity. My life is made better when I tell that voice to shut up, when I shrug off that bad moment, when I offer my burdens to God, when I talk out my feelings with someone who cares for me, when I choose to be happy instead.

Bad moments may happen. But that doesn’t mean it has to be a bad day. From here on out, I am going to work on choosing happy. 

Who’s with me?!

Favorite Five Friday (154th Edition)

23 Sep

There is nothing like an awesome and much-needed vacation! We are recovering from a really wonderful week in Orlando. Here are the highlights…

FAVORITE FIVE FRIDAY

1.  We started off our trip at Universal Studios Orlando, and it was so exciting to be there for the first time! I loved seeing a sort of parallel universe Universal, and there was so much to see. It was definitely a good time of year to go because the park wasn’t too crowded. We basically got to hop on all the rides we wanted. I liked seeing some of Universal Studios Hollywood rides with a bit of a different spin – Jurassic Park, Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey, and, my favorite, Revenge of the Mummy. There were lots of others I had never experienced before like ET, The Hulk, Rip Ride Rocket, Dragon Challenge, and Reign of Kong. It was really neat to explore something so familiar but also brand new at the same time. Universal will always have a soft spot in my heart.


2. The absolute best part of Universal Studios Orlando was Diagon Alley. I can’t even count how many times I teared up while we explored the realization of J.K. Rowling’s creation. It was just so stunning. Every bit of it. From having to find the entrance and hearing the bricks opening up to the dragon that literally breathes fire. We ran around like children exploring every nook and cranny, reading every single sign, finding every spell on the map (and not on the map), and inspecting every item in each shop. We especially loved the shows they put on. Watching WADA (the Wizarding Academy of Dramatic Arts) perform the tales of Beedle the Bard was completely amazing and so well done. I totally want their job. Escape From Gringotts was an excellent ride – we went on it three times. Honestly, we spent the majority of our time in Diagon Alley, and I wouldn’t change that for anything. It might sound crazy, but it was such an emotional experience for me. I love these stories and these characters. Being immersed in this Wizarding World is like finally getting my Hogwarts letter. And it was every bit as magical as I’d dreamed. 

3. Relaxation is certainly a key component in any worthwhile vacation. People thought we were crazy for spending our trip at two theme parks because you know… We work at one. Believe me, I wondered the same thing. But we gave ourselves time to relax. We didn’t bother rushing from place to place because we knew we had time. We stopped to look in stores, we saw shows, we went to the pool, we had long, delicious meals. For us, it was a perfect mix of adventure and unwind.

4. Dan had a birthday while we were away! It was strange not to be with other friends and family, but also exciting to be at Walt Disney World! I tried to make it special by bringing candles (that I couldn’t light) for our meals – I ended up making him blow out candles through an app on my phone! Haha. We spent the day at Epcot enjoying their Food & Wine festival. The day was so hot, but we trekked through all the different countries eating and drinking as we went. I think Dan enjoyed South Korea and Poland the most, but Belgium was my favorite. It was a lot of fun trying so many different things. 35 will always be the year we traveled the world to celebrate Dan’s birthday. Oh, and we finished off with reservations at Coral Reef for dinner. Dining in the aquarium was really cool. And for the grand finale – The Mainstreet Electrical Parade! There was a lot of nostalgia there for both of us. A perfect way to end the day celebrating my favorite person. ❤️

5. If you are ever at Walt Disney World, do yourself a favor and take one their guided tours! They have several fantastic options that explore the history of Walt, Mickey, and their kingdom. We took the Marceline tour (named for an influential and inspirational place Walt lived in his childhood), and learned so much about Walt Disney – his life, his dreams, his failures, his successes. He was clearly a man ahead of his time and truly a world changer. On the tour we got to explore my favorite ride – the Haunted Mansion! Our guide, Michael, gave us tons of great info while we are on the ride (man, their headsets are awesome), and then we got to go into the attraction to see how it works. I was literally underneath the doom buggies as they rolled through the ballroom scene. It was so cool! That alone was worth the price of the tour. I loved every minute, and couldn’t recommend it more.

Those were my favorites, but I didn’t even get to touch on other amazing things like delicious food, how much we loved staying at Cabana Bay, drinks by the pool, bowling and mini golf, super cool magic bands, fast passes, picking out gifts, breakfast with our favorite characters from the Hundred Acre Woods, and so much more. I certainly have many memories to treasure for years to come. 

We are already having vacation withdrawals. Mostly we need another vacation where we can just sleep. 😉 Orlando, thanks for being awesome! Can’t wait to pick our next adventure!

Happy Friday!

Speaks To Me Sunday #64

4 Sep

Getting so pumped for our trip to Orlando! 

Universal and Disney World here we come. 😄

Anyone else taking an awesome vacation? Or just getting back from one? 🙋🏻

#SpeaksToMeSunday 

Speaks To Me Sunday #58

24 Jul


The Hackmans have been minimizing and practicing The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up (Thanks Marie Kondo).

The amount of things we have realized that we don’t need is unreal. All this stuff just sitting there, creating clutter (it might be organized, but it’s still clutter), and taking up precious space in our lives. We are in the middle of a massive overhaul. We are done hanging onto belongings that we don’t need, that don’t serve a purpose, that don’t make us happy. Saying no to all of these things has been an incredible relief. I can’t wait to donate our many, many bags of stuff and own just what brings us joy. I am already loving the feel of being home in our space. 

I really believe this is going to set us up to focus on all of the gorgeous moments in our lives instead of all the stuff. I can’t wait!

What do you think of minimizing? Let’s hear it! 

Find me on Twitter and Instagram: @JoannaHackman

#SpeaksToMeSunday 

Favorite Five Friday (151st Edition)

15 Jul

I have some catching up to do this week. There’s a lot of good things happening…

FAVORITE FIVE FRIDAY

1. I didn’t post last Friday because there was so much happening in the world… Posting about the little moments in my life didn’t seem important while there was so much tragedy. But I’ve also come to realize there are always going to be hard things happening in the world. That doesn’t mean we stop living. But it does mean we take a look around and see what we can do to help. I’m still looking for ways to step up, but here’s a few of my thoughts on current events in a post from earlier this week: Speaks To Me Sunday.

2. We had a magical time at the Hollywood Bowl last week! The LA Philharmonic gorgeously played the orchestration along to Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. It was such a fun way to watch the film! The live music was perfection, and the night was only made better by sharing it with our friends. Definitely an evening for the memory books.


3. We started a new acting class this month! We are focusing on commercial for the next few weeks with the fabulous Laurie Records. One class in, and I’ve already learned so much. I can’t wait to get out there and apply my newly acquired knowledge.

4.  My big brother turned 30 last week! I wish we could have been there to celebrate with him, but I am totally proud of the gift I sent. Remember the old view finders where you could see little pictures through the lense? Usually from a Disney movie. Jeremy and I loved those as kids. Recently a friend told me about a place where I could have one made from my own pictures. I loved putting together a few of my favorite photos of us to make this a really special gift. Jer, you have worked so hard to get to where you are! You deserve every special and good thing coming your way.

5. We completed the Whole30! 30 days of eating only the good stuff, and we feel great. (From my Instagram:) Here are a few of the benefits we’ve experienced: we are using our time more wisely, we are spending more time together, we are successful meal planners, we are not reliant on coffee or sugar, we are learning lots about the foods we do and don’t want to consume, we are trying new things, we are becoming better cooks, we are saving money by not going out to eat, we are fitting better in our clothes, we are feeling more alert and more energized, and yep, we lost weight too. It’s been an amazing experience, but it’s not over yet. Yes, I’m excited to try adding back in a glass of wine, some cheese, and delicious bread… But all in good time. And all in moderation and in control. We are heading into reintroduction feeling empowered, and we cannot recommend the Whole30 enough.

Before (L) & After (R)

Together we lost a total of 20.6 pounds & 22 1/2 inches.

Happy Friday!

Speaks To Me Sunday #55

3 Jul


First, how gorgeous is that?! 

It makes me so happy that I get to look at that every day because it’s on my wall!! 

I’ve shared a few photos of our gallery wall in other posts, but I wanted to write about our “center piece.” 

You all know how much I love quotes, and I wanted to choose one to be the focal point of our gallery. A quote that meant something to us. I also knew that I could count on my talented friend, Elise, to bring whatever we picked to life. She is a totally awesome, completely talented woman – one of her skills happens to be lovely little doodles. Dan and I had decided on an adventure theme, and I came to Elise with two quotes. She sketched them both, and this beauty captured exactly what I was looking for. It’s perfection. 

“Blessed are the curious for they shall have adventures.”

So this is our theme! I was going to say new theme, but when I think about it, it kind of always has been. We are curious, we are adventurers. And I love it. Looking at it every day remind me of who I am, who I want to be. 

What’s your theme? How do you keep it at the forefront of your mind? 

Let’s chat about it! Comment below or find me on Instagram or Twitter: @ JoannaHackman

Check out more of what Elise creates and has to say here: http://www.elisespiecesblog.com/?m=1 

#SpeaksToMeSunday