Newsletter #2 | December 18, 2018

Happy Tuesday!

Everyone wants to act like the holiday season is happy & jolly & bright. Joy, joy joy, right? For me this time of year has become synonymous with increased anxiety & I know that I am not alone. But not to just pick on the holiday season, life in general can be overwhelming for us all, right? I will guess it is part of what has lead you to seek more travel, more adventure or maybe even nomad-ism? What is one thing you want to change about the holidays? What is your favorite thing about this time of year? Your least favorite?

So,  (spoiler alert) I am here to tell you that taking to the road won’t bring you joy in & of itself, so how do we find it when there’s so much to be stressed about? I will take a leap & say it may even allude you…you may not just find it just hanging around every corner or lingering in the air like bad cologne. I have a very freeing idea, a powerful one … Ready? We must be intentional with joy because it won’t just happen to you….joy is CREATED, more than it is found!

For 2018, my ‘word’ was CHOICE. It has served me better than I could have ever expected. It has given me a tool – a reminder – that has helped instill a habit that has been life changing. The habit has been to change my automatic responses to life’s unplanned or unavoidable occurrences and has allowed me to take control of my choices… & ultimately my life! I am responsible for my own joy. I found the power of ‘choice’ this year & the by-product is I can have JOY! Freedom & travel was part of the choice & is helping create joy, but the travel itself did not create the joy.

On the topic of joy & holidays, my daughter recently stated that one of our families most powerful (or main) love languages is food. Food unites us & serves as the gateway for the memories — > the experiences we have more often than not are at least started with if not centered around food. There is something so comforting, often celebratory & at the heart,communal about gathering around food. Do you have traditional dish you bring to a special gathering? What is it?

Try this (even if you only do it once or on a small scale this year) …replace a physical gift you were planning for someone with a meal together. Tell them that what you really want is more time with them this year. Don’t go to McDonald’s. Plan to cook, sit, eat, talk, laugh – even cry. You will (both) remember this “gift”. And the BONUS … you haven’t added more ‘stuff’ to your life (or someone else’s).

In making all of these choices this year, I have become a very intentional person. I care deeply about authenticity — in experiences, intentions & actions. Part of this journey has lead me to take a little time every day to read a few chapters of my (latest) favorite book (or cookbook), a good motivational book or listen to a TED Talk or listen to a Podcast (my new obsession) I will leave you with a few of my favorites in the links at the bottom–> I hope that you enjoy! I would LOVE to hear your favorites!

Have an awesome week – or at least an intentional one & I hope you have

A Most Joyous Journey to you … & I hope to see you down the road

– Chef Melissa

P.S… Do you pick a ‘word’ of intention or motivation each year? If so, what was 2018? Have you picked 2019? I HAVE … I will share next week!

Below a few peace-inducing, food-loving, joy-finding links for you to get lost in! Take some time to breathe this week – you deserve it! I listen to podcasts on Spotify but you can choose your favorite platform (Apple/iTunes, Stitcher, Google)

10 Outstanding Ted Talks that Inspire you to Live Simply I could just go on & on with Ted Talks. I will start here.

Just Forking Around This podcast makes the top of my list for (non-business type) because it’s a “show about the wonderful world of food & the incredible people who grow, craft, brew, cook, serve & create within it” Need I say more about why I love it?

Discovering Why a book by Joshua Forster. It is my current read … I love it!

Food & Fury podcast with the goal to get people cooking –> a great goal!!

The RV Entrepreneur Podcast Podcast of fellow Nomads Heath Padgett (& his wife Alyssa)

The RV Family Travel there’s a tab for the podcast. I just found this one, so let me know!

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