My next guest writer in my Celebrating Life Now series is a dear friend I have known all of my blogging life. Leanne Le Cras, from Cresting the Hill started blogging a couple of months before me and we met up through link parties.
Since then, Leanne has been my blogging friend, the person I go to and run ideas by and also just having a vent when blogging or life seems like it is all too hard.
Leanne has been a guest before and you can find some of her previous posts at the end of this one. I would love you to check out her blog, Cresting the Hill which is all about enjoying our midlife experience.
Today, Leanne is writing about creating memories and happiness in her Celebration of Life.
I want to thank my lovely blogging buddy Sue for inviting me to guest post on her blog again. This time we’re taking part in what I’m calling “The Celebration of Sue” as she turns 60 – and she is even more Sizzling than when she started her blog!
I’ve been inspired to make August my month to write about Happiness on my blog Cresting the Hill so why not combine what I’ve been doing there with Sue’s 60th celebrations? And seeing we’re talking birthdays, I thought I’d share a few thoughts about taking the opportunity to create memories every chance you get – and what better place to start than your birthday?
I read somewhere (who knows where? It was probably Facebook or some random internet article!) that you should proactively seek opportunities to create memories. We don’t celebrate enough of life’s events – we focus on the big stuff, but it’s often the smaller moments that can be just as meaningful if we intentionally make the most of them.
I’ve also read how important it is to have photos of yourself – and that most women tend to avoid the camera because it seems to magnify all our self-perceived flaws. I am notorious for this – it feels like it’s impossible to find a good photo of myself where I’m looking happy and at ease and not stilted or awkward. The selfie generation has this down to a fine art, but not so much with our generation.
When I read things like ‘create memories’, or ‘have photos taken’, or ‘mark occasions’, I tend to think “yes, that’s fine for other people but it’s not really my thing.” In saying that and thinking that way I set myself up to miss out on opportunities to make lasting memories that I can look back on with a smile and talk about in years to come.
MY TIME IN THE SPOTLIGHT
It was a few months before my 50th birthday when I read the article about creating memories and it actually prodded me to think about what plans I was making to celebrate my milestone. In all honesty I hadn’t made any – the thought of a big party with dozens of people milling around in a loud crowded room didn’t appeal, neither did the traditional girls’ weekend away, or any other event that was suggested. But if I was going to create memories I needed to do something.
So with this in mind, I bit the bullet and settled for a lunch get together with a group of friends who all knew each other socially – no pressure for me to keep any stragglers entertained, and no big preparations to be made – just a simple lunch and lots of conversation – and a few photos. And, you know what? I am so glad I made the effort. I had a wonderful time catching up with those friends, I laughed and talked and ate and had my photo taken and created memories that still make me smile five years later.
WHAT I LEARNT
The lessons I took away from my birthday were:
- It’s okay to be the centre of attention now and then (something Midlife women aren’t good at).
- When you relax and have fun you feel young and you don’t mind having photos taken
- Photos taken when you are relaxed and happy are really special
- Getting friends and family together for an occasion is a recipe for creating great memories
- I need to do something like that more often!
This is a photo of my husband and me taken on my birthday (I didn’t want to embarrass any of my friends by putting them in a blog post) but even I can see how happy I look and it’s one of my favourite photos of the two of us.
CELEBRATING LIFE NOW
So how does this apply to Sue’s August celebration of life?
It applies because every day has the potential for celebration. If you haven’t taken the chance to create a memory lately, then this is your reminder to go and do something that’s fun – take some photos while you’re at it. Include a few friends, or drag along a few family members because the more the merrier. “Live, Laugh, Love” as the famous quote goes – life is short and we don’t want to miss a moment. There will be days ahead when we need those happy memories, so the time to create them is right now!
So Sue – Happy August Birthday Month! I’m expecting to see lots of photos of you celebrating this milestone and inspiring the rest of us who will be there before we know it!
Hi I’m Leanne,
When I turned 50 a few years ago I had the choice of sinking into middle age or celebrating it. I chose to celebrate, and part of that celebration was to start my blog Cresting the Hill . I found my voice again and in the process I connected with women all over the world who were also enjoying this great adventure that is Midlife.
I used to define my life by saying I was a wife, or a mother, or by what I did as my profession. Now I define myself on my own terms – as a woman in my own right. I’m discovering who I am, and I’m really liking that person! It’s like I’ve reached the “crest of the hill” in life, the climb is behind me and the view stretches out in front. I’m only half way there and the best is yet to come!
Other guest posts from Leanne you might like to read: