Why I Set Intentions AND Not Resolutions

2017 has reared it’s head and people are shouting out to the world what they “resolve” to fix this year. I’ve written about this very notion before (see here) and I stand by my initial thoughts. I don’t do resolutions, never have and never will. A resolution to me, seems to be a means to end. And end to something bad or a flaw. Like I need to fix something that was broken or change immediately (or else). I don’t think I need to change and I certainly don’t think I am broken. Change is good, but not when it comes with baggage…

I totally get the idea that a new year should bring change, hope or a fresh slate. That sounds positive, whereas to me a resolution has a negative connotation attached to it. Instead of thinking onto 2017 in terms of what you resolve to fix, why don’t you think of 2017 as an opportunity to CREATE something positive in your life? Listen, if the word “resolution” doesn’t get your panties in a twist like it does mine, then by all means RESOLVE away! Who am I to judge? I however, don’t like anything that feels negative or daunting to me.

This year I am setting intentions and not resolutions. Maybe you can set an intention for the life you are actively CREATING?  Change your intentions whenever you see fit. Commit yourself to being PRESENT in this world, for each moment can bring something different to your life.  Resolutions, opportunities, intentions, goals, wishes, whatever you call your deepest desires, don’t fall victim to them. Don’t let them hold you hostage. Change them without warning. Grow through, what you go through. Not being free to express yourself without judgement (even from within) is damaging enough.

If you made a resolution this year, I wish you the very best. For me, my intentions are clear.

In 2017,
I intend to live with intent;
I intend to love my body more
I intend to laugh louder
I intend to hug longer
I intend to try new things
I intend to express my emotions without fear of judgement
I intend to create
I intend to love deeper
I intend to breathe
I intend to embrace my life, for it is the only one I am ever going to get….

Don’t fear failing, fear having never tried at all.
Namaste~
Joy

Food For Thought: We Share Hope Fundraiser

Chances are if you are from my neck of the woods (Rhode Island to be exact), you have been to Seven Stars Bakery. Their bakery items are flaky, delicious and downright addicting. I love their scones! Doesn’t matter which flavor, they are all my favorite! Seven Stars Bakery is more than a business. It is a community. They are committed to those who live, work and play in this little state. That is why on January 2nd 2017, they are having a fundraiser for We Share Hope, a non-profit food rescue that brings food to those in need all over Rhode Island.

We Share Hope is a non-profit food rescue run by 100% volunteers that share their time, talent and resources to help those in need. WSH supports over 30 communities at over 80 locations in Rhode Island getting food to food pantries, section 8 housing, homeless shelters, churches, military housing, children’s recreation centers, soup kitchens and more.

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Why January 2nd? Well, January 2nd, 2017 happens to be Seven Stars Bakery 16th Anniversary! What better way to say “THANK YOU” for keeping them in business all these years by giving back to the community. 100% of the proceeds from all three of their locations will go directly to We Share Hope. You heard it correctly, 100% from ALL three locations. Every $1.00 donated = $63 worth of food for those in need. Think about how many families they can feed? How generous is Seven Stars Bakery? This is why they are a local favorite. They offer amazing products with amazing service and have a generous spirit behind them.

How You Can Help
Visit one of their three locations January 2nd 6:30am-6pm

820 Hope Street, Providence
342 Broadway, Providence
Rumford Ctr, East Providence

If you don’t find yourself in the neighborhood to purchase a delicious treat or cup of coffee, consider donating directly to We Share Hope through this donation link. Remember, every $1.00 donated is worth a great deal of food for someone in need! I know I will be heading to Providence tomorrow to grab myself a scone (or three) and knowing I helped make a difference right here in my community.

Happy New Year & Namaste~
Joy

Operation Gratitude & The Halloween Candy Buyback: A Sweet Way To Say You Care!

Halloween is over! Our houses are filled with mounds of sugary treats and kids are starting the trades with their friends. Chances are, your kids gathered enough candy to feed a small army. That’s perfect. That is where Operation Gratitude- Halloween Candy Buy-Back comes to play. I participate in this every year. It’s not because I am a “mean mom” and don’t let my kid have candy. It’s FIRST and foremost because it’s a great cause and SECOND I am a “mean mom” who doesn’t allow her kid to have 20 pounds of candy!

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In all seriousness, this program works for us. With Landon’s allergies on top of his food sensitivities (food dye makes my kid nothing short of BONKERS), we are not left with much for him to enjoy. He enjoys the experience of Halloween and sure, getting a few special pieces of “SAFE” candy are always a bonus. He also knows that the more candy he collects, the more candy will be sent overseas to the troops. The candy doesn’t just represent a sugary delicious treat, it represents a good deed and that we appreciate what the soldiers are doing for our country.  It reinforces the motto “sharing is caring”, something we say on a daily basis.

You can search on their website for drop-off locations for this program or can send it yourself. All shipping information is located on their website. Chances are there are many in your area! But, if you are local to me in Little Rhody, consider dropping if off at Pezza Orthodontics in Cranston, RI. The office is having their 4th Annual Halloween Candy Buy-Back Party TOMORROW Thursday, Nov 3 from 2-5pm. Bring your leftover and unwanted candy and they will be having prizes for gift cards!  There will be food, drinks and more! They are sending everything in care packages to our troops via Operation Gratitude! No donation is too small or large. If you can not make that time, feel free to drop it off at the location earlier as well! Or drop it off to me and I will make sure they get the donation!
Namaste~
Joy

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The Great Escape Room: A Brain Busting Experience

A few weeks ago, a small group of us Rhody Bloggers got to try out The Great Escape Room in Providence and boy was it AH-MAY-ZING! However, it does do a little something to your ego if you do NOT escape! Kidding, but we were shy of escaping by about 5 minutes!  I thought I was pretty clever, but boy were the clues wicked tricky! I think that’s what made it so enjoyable. It wasn’t your average clue. You had to think and really use your mind! They were out-of-the-box clever and challenging! I think I can safely speak for the bloggers in attendance and say it was a great experience, one we will surely take part in again.IMG_3473

Picture this,  you are locked in a room. You have 1 hour to solve a bunch of clues in order to solve a bigger puzzle that unlocks the doors to said room. Problem is, you don’t know what you are solving or looking for. It is a riddle? Is it a numeric code? Are you looking for words? Are you looking for numbers? At the beginning, it was quite confusing. You just start tearing the room apart piece by piece. Literally. Our in room guide Andy (who was so great),  kept telling us to just make a mess and search anything and everything.  So we did! We started finding clues (can’t tell you what) and started to put them in the right order (or so we thought). Nothing is as it seems and yet everything was. Don’t over-think. That’s a hint I can give you!

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This is great activity for the whole family, a bunch of friends, team building and even private parties! The location is perfect for anyone looking for some fun in Providence. After you ESCAPE, you are surrounded by tons or yummy restaurants and cool shops. Perfect summer afternoon in the city.  This could be a great rainy day activity this summer as well!  Tickets are $28 with a $1.80 processing fee. They also offer Student and Military discounts and 10% off a group of 10 or more.

The Great Escape Room Providence is a real-life room escape game based on the popular computer and mobile phone escape games. Escape the room games are the newest craze sweeping the nation! After entering a room with your team, the door is locked behind you. 60 minutes are on the clock! You must work together in order to find clues and solve puzzles that will lead you to your escape. It is part scavenger hunt and part puzzle game. 

Are you ready to become a Master Sleuth?  Get ready to Escape The Room!

 

A Little Rhody Summer

Summer is almost upon us! Well, not really, but one can dream. We need to get through Spring first (and that IS upon us), but if you are like me you are already planning your summer weekend getaways, road trips and/or a list of all the places to see & things to do! Should you find yourself heading up to “Little Rhody” (or even passing through it), there are so many fun & unique things to do here. Summer is the best time to visit Rhode Island; we aren’t labeled the Ocean State for just any old reason! Below are my Top 5 activities you should consider when visiting RI in the summer! You could pack these into 1 very long day, but I suggest planning a weekend getaway to really enjoy these activities.

Things to do in RI

  1. Roger Williams Park Zoo

This is a perfect cloudy day or late afternoon trip idea for the whole family. This zoo has more than just animals. Kids can cool off in the Drip Drop Water Garden, climb the treehouse where there are things to see & hear or build a creation at the Sticks & Stones Building Zone. There are even camel rides, giraffe feedings, rock climbing & a butterfly garden! At $14.95 for adults/$9.95 for children, it’s a great price for all it offers. Plus, you can bring in your own picnic lunch (some zoo’s do not allow outside food),  which is amazing!

  1. Rustic Drive-in Movie Theater

There is something to said about sitting under the stars on a cool, breezy summer night watching your favorite movies with a bunch of friends! It just screams SUMMER to me! This authentic 1950’s drive-in has 3 screens, with 2 shows playing on each screen. Outside food can be brought in (or purchased there) and it is only $27 per carload! With movie tickets at almost 12$ per ticket, per show- this is a great bargain! Kids & adults will love this place! And it’s dog friendly! Furry animals deserve some summertime fun as well!

  1. Newport, RI

Visiting Newport can be broken into many parts. 1. A visit to one of the 11 mansions, which were built during the Colonial era through the Gilded Age. 2. A visit to one of the popular beaches. 3. Shopping & dining along the harbor that boast spectacular views. You can visit Newport during the day and have a completely different experience at night. There is truly something for everyone.

2.    Waterfire

Waterfire is a non-profit arts organization whose goal is to bring to life the downtown urban area and revitalize it with art, music and more. Over 80 bonfires are set amongst the water at WaterPlace Park. Visitors walk along the banks enjoying local music, watch performances, grab local fare from food trucks as well as the sites & smells of the burning embers. It’s always free admission and it really is a site to see. Check their schedule online for more info.

  1. Galilee & Point Judith

This quaint fishing village is home to the largest fishing fleet in RI, as well as home to the Block Island Ferry. The beach is small yet gorgeous. A jetty formation lines the beach where onlookers wave to all the ferries that pass by. George’s of Galilee serves the best clamcakes & chowder and there are tons of places to buy fresh fish & lobster right from the boat. The view from their upstairs outdoor terrace is amazing. Small shops, ice cream parlors & other eateries make this #1 on my list!

Your “Little Rhody” Summer is awaiting your arrival…

The Magic of Edaville’s Festival of Lights

The magic of the holiday season is something as a parent I never take for granted. Witnessing Christmas through the eyes of a child, especially your own is just, magical! I was so blessed to be given the opportunity to attend Edaville’s Festival of Lights this holiday season (as well as a lucky winner from my giveaway). I had been to Edaville before the renovation of Thomasland began, but never attended a Festival of Lights. On this visit I was able to see all the amazing improvements and additions to the park since my last visit 3 years ago. My family and I also had an amazing time enjoying the lights, visiting Santa, having fun on the rides, sipping on hot cocoa (and eating fried Oreos) and ended it all with a magical train ride through the cranberry bogs.

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Edaville USA’s Festival of lights has been a tradition for over 70 years. Generation after generation returns to the park to recreate priceless family memories. Young and old alike enjoy the park from the train ride to the Ferris Wheel and don’t forget the newest addition troublesome trucks! There is something for everyone!

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I was so surprised with Thomasland. I really thought the rides were going to be aimed at the wee-little ones. While little ones can ride, they really are fun for any age. The Troublesome Trucks Runway Coaster was our favorite! And I love that they allow passengers to ride it twice in a row! Cranky’s Crane Drop was our next favorite. We literally laughed and giggled the whole ride. Can’t forget about the famous ferris wheel! Be sure to ride the ferris wheel once it is dark. You get an spectacular panoramic view of the park all lit up. Last but not least, you can’t leave without a ride on the train; pulled by Thomas himself! 

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IMG_0760I was so pleased with our visit. There were plenty of quiet areas to take a break. As you are aware, Landon and I don’t handle crowds or loud noise well. Sensory Processing and anxiety like to wreck havoc during amusement park visits. Having a quiet corner to regroup and refresh is key for us. Also, we asked about food allergies in the Dockside Diner and they had all the information we needed to make an informed decision on what we could eat. They even had pre-packaged nut free cookies as well! We are so thrilled that they offer alternatives and took our inquiry seriously.

I could seriously go on and on about this park. It really is a hidden gem in New England. It has a hometown feel. I can’t wait to hopefully go back this Spring and tell you about all the new rides they were building! A water ride, a ride in the dark and bumper boats are just some of the rides we saw being built. Dino Land was closed on our visit, so I can’t wait to see that too! If you are looking for some fun this holiday season and what perhaps might turn into an annual tradition: Visit Edaville!

They are open daily from now until January 1st 2016 (closed Christmas)
Weekdays 4-9pm
Weekends 3-9:30pm
General Admission $29 Children under 2 Free

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