There have been some deeply personal things happening in my life that are making me want to stay in bed with my head covered. Oh I’ll list a few, just for fun… husband nearly died in a 4-wheeler accident, laid off from my job, having to sell our beautiful 1854 Farmhouse and moving, loosing our precious pup, Polly. Exactly 3 months after that loosing the person in my life, who was my very first hero, my sweet gentle Father!

You never know... | Vin'yet Etc.

I keep thinking, that’s enough… stop this ship, cause I want off! Oh, but it doesn’t stop does it? Life keeps chugging along and bad things keep on happening.Β  It’s getting to the point where I’m afraid to look forward. What next? Really? Yep, licking my wounds and feeling really sorry for myself… until yesterday! Yesterday, I decided that while all of these things are horrible, not nice and really not that positive I am going to look at all of these things as a positive. Yep, I’m coocoo for cocoa puffs! How can I take all of these things and possibly put a silver lining through them?

Well I will dammit and you aren’t going to stop me LIFE! Hear that, LIFE!?

I am choosing gratitude!

I choose Gratitude | Vin'yet Etc.

I am choosing to be grateful that my Husband recovered from a very broken body, to not only walk again, but do it in a way that he can out run and out do most men half his age. Queue “The 6 Million Dollar Man”…

I am choosing to see that loosing my job was a blessing, it is giving me the opportunity to broaden my horizons, to chase after those creative dreams and adventures that I never had the time for.

Adventure | Vin'yet Etc.

I am choosing to make our new home, the 13 year old home ours, it’s a blank canvas really and we’re going to make this place just as charming, just as special as our Farmhouse was. What an exciting challenge!

New to us home | Vin'yet Etc.

I am so very grateful for all of our precious moments with our special girl, the laughter, the love and the amazing gentle soul she was. That will never leave us, she will always be missed and the void she has left is still massive, but I have so much gratitude for her, for a person who never even wanted a pet in the first place, well she was so much more than a “pet”, I am forever humbled for all she has taught me!


The hurting is deep, and the loss is great, my Dad, my very first hero. The smartest, funniest and best DIYer ever.Β  MY Dad, taught me sarcasm, he showed me to always see the good in everything, to push through the pain and strive. “Chin up, Ducky, everything will be okay.” I know it will Dad, thank-you for all of your love and pride, it was felt and is felt, everyday! I am so very thankful that I was able to look my Dad in his eyes and tell him how much I loved him, how special he is to me and my life, that is a gift I will always cherish!

Forever My Hero | Vin'yet Etc.

This post isn’t supposed to be depressing, but I am finding this difficult to write with tears streaming. This is my way of healing… the way I am choosing to rid my self of the desire to stay in bed all day long with my head covered… shaking that feeling off. Chin up, Ducky!

Expect Nothing | Vin'yet Etc.

All of the bad things that have happened and will continue to happen are what make THIS life so very precious. The bad in life is what makes those memories, those renewed creative desires, the special moments you share with the ones you love and hold dear very valuable. These bad times make the way I look at my family and the special people in my life differently… they are life, they are the reason my life is precious and sweet and special. Yes bad things are happening, but I choose gratitude, not for the bad, but for the good. The bad can never out shine that good and I choose GRATITUDE!

Gratitude Changes Everything | Vin'yet Etc.

Gratitude for that beautiful sunrise… for nature.

Gratitude | Vin'yet Etc.

For laughter, special moments and true love.

Our Kiss | Vin'yet Etc.

For family.

Family | Vin'yet Etc.

I hope you always choose gratitude, regardless of what chaos is happening in your life. Trust me, I know that feeling of wanting to go to bed, covering your head and saying, “wake me when it’s over”. If you fight through that feeling and choose gratitude, you win!

You Choose | Vin'yet Etc.

Thank-you, for listening and being there. xo

~ Laurie

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  • Reply Shauna February 14, 2014 at 4:40 pm

    Hugs to you girl! I was so sorry to hear about your dad, but I had no idea you had burdened so much. You are an inspiration. Someone who keeps going and sees the positive in a difficult part of life. Spring is almost here and I feel good things are on their way for you. My wish is for you to learn from the past, heal and accept the new opportunities that are sure to come! xx, Shauna

    • Reply Laurie February 15, 2014 at 12:52 am

      Thanks Shauna, any and all positive thoughts are very welcomed here! xo Laurie

  • Reply Fernanda Reis February 14, 2014 at 5:47 pm

    What a beautiful inspirational post who created, it made tears come up in my eyes. Your dad will always be with you inside your heart, memories will always find a way to bring him closer to you. You are right to be grateful, everyday, for the opportunity to have such a wonderful dad and all the good things you did together, and all you learned from him. Love and hugs <3

    • Reply Laurie February 15, 2014 at 12:53 am

      Thanks you Fernanda, for stopping in and for such kind words! You are so right, those memories are like little life vests, they are my path to Dad, always! ~ Laurie xo

  • Reply Christine February 14, 2014 at 7:27 pm

    What an inspirational post! Let’s focus on the beautiful things in life!

    • Reply Laurie February 15, 2014 at 12:54 am

      Yes, Christine, lets! Thank-you so much for stopping in! ~ Laurie xo

  • Reply Diana February 14, 2014 at 7:54 pm

    I am grateful for you laurie… You are an inspiration… Blessings my friend… And a great big hug
    (Thanks for the tears!)

    • Reply Laurie February 15, 2014 at 12:55 am

      LOL, you are welcome for the tears, thought I’d share! πŸ˜‰ Right back at you friend of mine, one of my many blessings! ~Laurie xo

  • Reply Bud Dickson February 14, 2014 at 11:46 pm

    A wise person once said, life is a journey, not a destination. Any journey has ups, downs, good, bad, sad and amazing. One of the joys of the journey of life is that we get to choose who we travel with. I am very fortunate and happy that I get the honor to travel with you. Gratitude is a great word. I concur. Now lets go put those snowshoes on and go on that moonlit walk….

  • Reply Pam @ House of Hawthornes February 15, 2014 at 1:49 pm

    They say when it rains, it pours. At some point though a rainbow will come out. Good for you for looking on the positive side.

    • Reply Laurie February 17, 2014 at 3:27 pm

      I am learning as the years go by that you can train your brain to focus on the positive and that negative, chaos that is constant seems a little weaker. πŸ˜‰ It’s a journey! xo

  • Reply Inspire Me Heather February 15, 2014 at 1:50 pm

    Oh Laurie! Hugs to you and sorry to hear you’re having a rough go. You’ve got as positive attitude though and things will get better!! Stay strong and yeah, keep that chin waayyy up.

    • Reply Laurie February 17, 2014 at 3:27 pm

      Hi Heather, thanks so much! Chin up and in the ready! πŸ˜‰ xo

  • Reply Sheila Zeller February 15, 2014 at 8:02 pm

    Laurie, wow, you really have had a slam dunk in all the wrong ways πŸ™ I hurt for you and with you, and am definitely sending you hugs! I love your positive attitude – the glass is definitely half full with an outlook like yours! Throw those covers off my friend – the inspiration, adventure and creativity await! Thank you for sharing this painful piece of your journey. Authenticity… someone once mentioned that to me πŸ˜‰ HUGS!! xo

    • Reply Laurie February 17, 2014 at 3:28 pm

      You are phenomenal and truly authentic! Thanks so much for your friendship! xo

  • Reply Andrea February 16, 2014 at 10:34 pm

    Wow Laurie what a brave thing to share. Thanks so much! I hope writing it helped with the healing. You’ve had and have a lot of real blessings in your life. You’re right to choose gratitude…it’s not easy, but a great reminder for me.

    • Reply Laurie February 17, 2014 at 3:29 pm

      Hi Andrea, it’s not easy… this game of life is a tough one for sure and not one of us gets out of it alive… my take it focus on the positive and all else will fall into place! xo Thanks for stopping in!

  • Reply Janet @ ordinary mom February 17, 2014 at 1:22 am

    So sorry for your loss. Sending you hugs. You have many valid reasons for wanting to stay in bed and some days that may be is what needed. But I find your courage and optimism very inspiring and you are right. Life is hard. And kicks you when you are down. But sometimes that makes the sunny days all that sweeter. xo

    • Reply Laurie February 17, 2014 at 3:30 pm

      100% true, the sunny days are much sweeter when the positive is the focus! xo Thank-you!

  • Reply Dani@lifeovereasy February 17, 2014 at 4:42 pm

    Laurie, I’m sitting on a beach crying now. Life can throw so much at you sometime. We have all been there, and somehow we get through. Your attitude is so inspiring, in fact your positivity has always inspired me since the first time I met you on the net. It’s all so bittersweet – just hold on to the sweetness. Xo.

    • Reply Laurie February 18, 2014 at 11:48 pm

      Thank-you my friend! I appreciate your words to me and I really appreciate that you took the time to read my words, I will even forgive you for sitting on a beach while you were doing it! Thanks for the mimosa toast! πŸ˜‰ xoxo

  • Reply Rosa @ FLUTTER FLUTTER February 17, 2014 at 10:02 pm

    Wow. That is a lot to deal with! I am so sorry that you’ve been dealt so many blows. I’m inspired by your positive attitude! I tend to completely shut down when I feel overwhelmed, and stop blogging altogether, so the fact that you’re putting words to it and putting it out there is such a great example to me, and all of us!

    • Reply Laurie February 18, 2014 at 11:54 pm

      Thank-you Rosa… there are many people out there that are dealing with much more than I am, this post for me was a way to actually see that, to see why this life is so very precious. None of us gets out of this one alive, I can either spend my time feeling very sorry for myself OR I can put my chin up and really appreciate all that is in my life, good, bad and ugly. I’m very blessed that the good has been and is phenomenal! xo

  • Reply Cynthia @ A Button Tufted Life... February 18, 2014 at 4:22 pm

    Laurie… I am so very sorry that you have had so many difficult… devastating events in the last little while. Those were some real blows my friend!
    I can’t imagine how hard it must be to stay positive. I really admire your attitude… I have every confidence that you will stay positive and find a way to create a beautiful home and life filled with happiness again very soon.
    Thinking of you!!

    • Reply Laurie February 19, 2014 at 12:03 am

      Thank-you so much friend, unfortunately none of us escapes the blows that are life… for me this realization made what has been happening make sense. What I am trying to say is, without these devastating moments, the real beauty of the wonderful moments wouldn’t be as cherished! xo

  • Reply Lucy February 18, 2014 at 4:38 pm

    Aww Laurie..I wish I could give you a great big hug…I’m sorry sweet girl that you’ve been struggling with all these unfortunate situations. It is never easy to look for that light at the end of the tunnel when everything is just so dark around you. But that light is there…you just have to keep going along and you’ll see it. You’re already doing it by taking these bad situations and learning and growing from them.
    You are doing the right thing by getting out and exploring your creativity, you passions and this beautiful world. “Chin up duckie”…:) love that. xo

    • Reply Laurie February 19, 2014 at 12:07 am

      Thank-you, Lucy! I am so very thankful for the special time I had with my Dad, for the wonderful opportunity of having our pup, Polly, in our lives, that unconditional love from both of them is a gift. That is how I am choosing to look at all of the bad, as a gift! Chin up! xo

  • Reply Trisha D. February 18, 2014 at 5:17 pm

    Thanks for inspiring. There was nothing to complain about here, just un-inspired until I scrolled through your lovely photos and encouraging words. Thank you for being open and honest! I’m sorry to hear about your struggles but finding positive in all the rubble, even just a few times a day, can really work wonders. Keep your chin up!

    • Reply Laurie February 19, 2014 at 12:10 am

      Thank-you Trisha, your words are so true! The trick is to be good at seeing the positive gifts in all of that rubble! xo

  • Reply Denise... On a Whim February 18, 2014 at 5:31 pm

    Oh Laurie. I can understand some of what you are going through. I’ve lost both of my parents and, like you, my Dad was my hero, too. Best man I ever knew. I counted on him for a lot and never even knew it until he was gone. The same goes for my mom and, when she was gone, I felt so alone. Especially since I have other things going on that make life difficult sometimes, too. Knowing you’re not the ‘only one’ with problems does not make your own any easier. It’s difficult losing the things we love and difficult not being able to accomplish the things we thought we might have already done in our lives. And it would sometimes be so easy to hide and not come out. I’ve sometimes wished I could just bury myself for awhile and not come out until things blow over. But, the truth is, they only ‘blow over’ when we actually deal with them and, like you’ve said, change our attitudes about them. Life does just keep charging forward, without regard for what has happened or what we’re going through. But surrounding yourself with special people who are true friends is the key. And laughter. That always helps, too πŸ™‚ I’m thinking about you girl!

    • Reply Laurie February 19, 2014 at 1:48 am

      Thank-you Denise! I really appreciate your words! Laughter is one of my many tools to get through this thing we call life. Dad gave me his twisted humor and it has served me well! Thanks so much for thinking of me! <3

  • Reply Laura / Pet Scribbles February 18, 2014 at 6:01 pm

    Wow Laurie, I can’t imagine how tough things have been on you. Even just ONE of these would be enough to send me crawling back to the comfort of the bed covers too. I am so heartened that your husband recovered, but I am also very sad to read about your sweet pup and your hero, your father. I love this post for what it can teach all of us – including me – and I’m sending you lots of hugs for writing such a moving post. (The pictures and quotes are beautiful too!) Hugs!

    • Reply Laurie February 19, 2014 at 1:53 am

      Thank-you Laura! This mind set is getting me through some really rough times… I totally wanted to share how positive thinking can make all of the difference, I am working every day to always choose gratitude! Thank-you so much for stopping in! Brave lady who does videos! Now that’s impressive!!!! xo

  • Reply Meredith February 18, 2014 at 9:26 pm

    Wow Laurie. That was a beautiful, sad and uplifting post. Your photos are beautiful illustrations about how you’ve found beauty in every day things. I love the “chin up, ducky”…Dads are wonderful beings and how lucky you were to have had such a wonderful man in your life. Hugs!

    • Reply Laurie February 19, 2014 at 1:57 am

      Thank-you Meredith! I love your name, it’s beautiful! I am so very blessed to have had such a role model, my Dad, he taught me how a man should be, I am very happy to say that the man I married made my Dad very proud! xo I truly am blessed.

  • Reply Kathe February 18, 2014 at 10:05 pm

    It was like I was guided to your post at the perfect time Laurie! My father passed during this hour exactly 2 years ago! I had been feeling pretty melancholy but your post lifted me. Like your dad saying Chin up, Ducky, I hear mine right now saying Atta Girl πŸ™‚ Hugs and my own gratitude that you are a dear friend, though we’ve never met!

    • Reply Laurie February 19, 2014 at 2:01 am

      Thank-you Kathe, I sent you a hug earlier via FB, I saw your post on your Pop! πŸ™ It is so very hard when that missing them feeling grips! I am happy to hear that you were able to find my words and feelings helpful! It’s funny how we find friends, I feel the same way! xoxo Atta Girl! <3 The way you love your family is truly wonderful!

  • Reply Heather in Heels (@HeatherNHeels) February 18, 2014 at 10:13 pm

    just beautiful. I read it with both a smile and some tears in my eyes – thank you for the positive thoughts and thank you for having the courage to share this, I’m sure it has helped you, but I am also sure it has helped others:)! we are all the sum of our life experiences, but it’s more than that – it’s how we manage those experiences we don’t really like:) you are shining example of beauty, because you are finding the beauty in life:)

    • Reply Laurie February 19, 2014 at 2:10 am

      Thank-you, Heather! What a lovely thing to say! I am so glad you liked it, if we all do our part to live outside of our selves, to reach out and try to impart some of our soul, I think we can all help each other! xo

  • Reply Tia February 19, 2014 at 1:16 pm

    Aw Laurie, you are so awesome. I’m so sorry that everything has been so tough lately. I’m sure your dad is so proud of who you are — even when things are at their worst, you’re not only choosing gratitude, but inspiring others to do so too. So far, 2014 has landed a few back-to-back punches, but there is so much to be grateful for. Thanks for the positive words πŸ™‚

    • Reply Laurie February 19, 2014 at 1:55 pm

      Thank-you Tia! 2013 and 2014 have been interesting, for sure! I really have to focus on the good in my life, that is helping to remind me that this life is a journey and I want it to be a great one. xo

  • Reply Lindsey February 19, 2014 at 1:59 pm

    I tried to comment on this over the weekend and lost the comment somehow. Let me just say that I am in awe of your strength during this rough stage. I find it very difficult to choose gratitude and I haven’t faced nearly as much sadness and stress as you are facing. I do believe that this is the only way to get through these things but it takes such courage to be able to push through the negativity and see a silver lining. It makes you such a great role model for all of us.

    • Reply Laurie February 19, 2014 at 2:25 pm

      Thank-you Lindsey! That is very kind of you to say! Choosing gratitude is the only way for me to be able to get through this thing we call life. Thank-you so much for re-commenting, that’s just awesome! xo

  • Reply Jo-Anna February 19, 2014 at 8:32 pm

    This is such a beautiful and honest post…you certainly have been through a lot. I love your new vision – it is very inspiring – and I wish you the best of luck on your journey this year! I look forward to following it along!

    • Reply Laurie February 20, 2014 at 1:38 pm

      Thank-you Jo-Anna, my new vision is just an addition to what I already know. Honesty, inside and out, and positive thoughts… the choosing gratitude is an addition to that. I am so very grateful for all of the blessings in my life, even the bad ones have shown me and taught me so much. I love your blog, your recipes are out of this world! xo

  • Reply carol@thebrightbox February 20, 2014 at 3:05 am

    Oh yeah! Bring on the gratitude baby. I love this post and I love that you’re choosing to see things with grateful eyes. BTW, we are SO on the same page. I just wrote about seeing the happiness in my daily life. Soul sista xo

    • Reply Laurie February 20, 2014 at 1:59 pm

      I saw that in my feed yesterday, off to read it this morning! What a great idea! Of course we are soul sistas, now if I could just have your physique! πŸ˜‰

  • Reply Carole February 20, 2014 at 6:28 pm

    Laurie, I know just how you feel about hiding in bed! BUT good for you to choose to live with gratitude. I shared on my last blog post about my 32 yr old daughter’s story of living with cancer. I too look for gratitude every day, even though the bed often calls my name. All the best to you and yours. Hugs, Carole

    • Reply Laurie February 21, 2014 at 1:28 pm

      Hi Carole, I read your beautiful words regarding your daughter. Like I said in my comment, “it truly is a shitty deal”, heart wrenching for a Mother to watch her child suffer. I wish you and yours all of the best too. Hug, squeeze and love all you can while you are both about to! Bless you! xoxo

  • Reply Clydia @ Three Mango Seeds February 21, 2014 at 2:22 am

    Laurie — I haven’t been making the rounds like I used to (bad I know, embarrassed to admit) but I didn’t realize all you have been though and I’m so sorry! I am so impressed that you are handling it all with such grace and positivity. (Not sure that I could) Btw, I absolutely adore your new farmhouse! Sending big hugs your way! xoxo

  • Reply Laurie February 21, 2014 at 1:29 pm

    Clydia, YOU do not need to apologize, silly! Glad you were able to read my gratitude post, it may put feelings into perspective regarding your Mama! Love you, hugs to you and your Mama bear!

  • Reply Angie@Echoes of Laughter February 21, 2014 at 4:07 pm

    So sorry to hear about your Dad! Sending you hugs! Angie xo

  • Reply Jeannie February 21, 2014 at 4:32 pm

    I’m grateful you can see a horizon. Getting to that point is a huge step.

  • Reply Sarah Wright February 26, 2014 at 5:27 am

    I am thankful and grateful for your dad as well. If he instilled your sarcasm in you I sure am happy as I look forward to your blogs and your way with words. Sometime YOU are the reason someone else pulls the covers off of their own head πŸ™‚

    • Reply Laurie February 26, 2014 at 1:33 pm

      Wow Sarah! Thanks so much for your huge compliment, that’s so kind of you to say! xo

      • Reply Sarah Wright February 26, 2014 at 3:27 pm

        Xo back atcha your awesome πŸ™‚ chin up.

  • Reply Angela February 26, 2014 at 3:01 pm

    Big hugs! Thank you for sharing such beautiful words!

  • Reply Jessica March 13, 2014 at 1:34 pm

    This is a really powerful thing to share-thank you for doing it. You are very brave and I admire how honest you are. These images and words are so lovely. Thank you again for sharing them with us!

    • Reply Laurie March 13, 2014 at 4:38 pm

      Hi Jessica! You are welcome… funny I don’t consider myself to be brave, but I do love that you said it! Thanks! I’m so glad you stopped by and I discovered your lovely blog! I adore that photo of your little puddle stomper!!!! xo

  • Reply Elaine Griffin March 13, 2014 at 1:47 pm

    This was a beautiful post – thank you for sharing your beautiful pictures and your gratitude!

    • Reply Laurie March 13, 2014 at 4:35 pm

      Thank-you Elaine! Since I have written this post and have truly accepted gratitude as a way of thinking, some pretty awesome things have been happening! Have a wonderful day and thanks for stopping in! xo

  • Reply March 14, 2014 at 9:05 pm

    Bravo, Laurie!! I am standing and applauding your attitude!!! Well done!

    • Reply Laurie March 15, 2014 at 2:22 pm

      Thank-you so much Tanya!!! Since this post so many wonderful things are coming into my life, gratitude has power! πŸ˜‰ I appreciate you stopping in! xo

  • Reply Karla November 17, 2015 at 12:35 am

    Laurie, I just found your post and it moved me to tears.

    It’s unbelievable that things happened to you all at once, as they often do and even more incredible is how instead of letting it pull you down or let it defeat you, it was meant to make you a stronger and more positive person!

    Losing a loved one is the hardest thing and the pain never really goes away does it? But as you said, life goes on and you need to go on too. The best way to continue is to be grateful even for the not so positive things.

    I almost lost my parents two weeks ago and that shook me literally. It still was not their time to go and Im grateful they are still around because they have to see their grandchildren (My sis and I).

    Losing my FT, well paid corporate position also make me rethink everything. Now I’ve been blogging/writing about what I love for the past 4 years and It’s only getting better. I’ve had some amazing opportunities because of it and I couldn’t be more grateful.

    Now I am looking for the position that will fulfill me spiritually, personally, will enable me to help people and also allow me to take care of my responsibilities…

    No matter what happens, we keep pressing forward right?

    Just wanted to thank you for reading and for your inspirational post.

    Karla πŸ™‚

    P.S: I’m sure your dad is very proud of you!

    • Reply Laurie November 17, 2015 at 7:07 am

      Hi Karla,
      Thank-you so much for reading this older post and your kind words. πŸ™‚ I am so thankful that your parents are still with you, what a great blessing that you did not have to bare that burden just yet. Life is a humbling thing… the only way I can get through this is by staying grateful and going forward… my amazing parents, my family and my heart wouldn’t accept anything less. Gratitude always leads the way for me, even though my parents are no longer with me I know I was the luckiest girl to have had such role models in my life to guide and love me. I truly am so very blessed, every day. xo

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