Most of you know my deep affection and connection to nature. In fact, one of the primary intentions of this website is to honor the natural world we all live in and learn how to develop a deeper relationship with it so that we're able to pick up on the guidance, messages and healing properties it is continuously providing to us! It's simply a matter of us being aware, being in the present moment and being able to get out of our heads and take time to look around and observe our surroundings when we're outside! Nature is ALWAYS speaking to us, I promise!!
It is impossible to not feel AWEstruck by our world and our planet if you just remember the power, loving kindness, soulfulness, and vibrancy of it, so I've included some yummy, heart-warming animal images and a magical time-lapse nature vid that will fill you up with gratitude and amazement regarding this beautiful Universe we live in :)
Plus, nature is an instant and guaranteed pick-me-up! Just try to look at the pics below of owls nuzzlin, pandas piggy-back ridin, black panthers roamin and koalas cuddlin and be in a bad mood!! You just can't! ;)
This is in honor of you Nature ~
Thank you for all that you continually & unconditionally provide to us!
YOU. ARE. AWESOME!
Magic is essentially the higher understanding of nature.
I unfortunately don't have credits for these amazing photos but I will be happy to add that info if contacted or remove them if so preferred.
P.S. I have various other blog posts about the natural world and how it can enhance our lives in a multitude of ways, including how to work with the moon to manifest, organic recipes, detoxifying natural baths, the healing power of crystals, etc...
So please explore and click around if you feel compelled to learn more! <3
The AWEsome Richie Parker has lived his entire life overcoming the odds, proving people wrong and challenging his very own physical limitations.
Richie was born without arms but that has never once stopped him from achieving all of his dreams and goals and he has never used his physical disability as an excuse. In fact, it seems that Richie has transcended his physical limitation so much, it has become a motivator, a fuel to his already fiery and happy spirit, and that makes for one amazing combo of a human being.
I absolutely urge you, with all of my heart, to watch Richie's amazing story in the video below as it contains awe-inspiring footage of him, from the time he was a baby, showing example after example of how is ingenuity, smarts and passion has allowed him to go all the way to being a design engineer for Hendrick Motorsports, NASCAR's most winning organization.
To say Richie's video is worth the watch is the under statement of the century and if you allow it to, it will reinvigorate your own tenacity in life and make you remember that there are no excuses. When your heart and soul tug at you, there is always, always, always a way. Just exactly how did Richie learn to ride a bike? How does he drive? How does he do his computer design work? And how does he do everyday things that we all take for granted, like eat?! Richie's video showcases it all and I guarantee your heart will invariably connect with his, just by watching the vid!
Thank you, Richie Parker, for being such an inspiring living example of fortitude and reminding us all "where there's a will, there's a way."
I first found out about the AWEsome Carly Fleischmann while watching 20/20s "Medical Mysteries" and knew instantly she had to be featured here as July's AWEstruck Award Winner! Her and her family's story is so moving, inspiring and filled with love that it will undoubtedly uplift your spirit.
I don't want to ruin the video for you, but you'll have to watch to find out why never, ever giving up on something or someone you believe in and doing things with love is so vital to having a life with meaning. I know it enlightened me a great deal regarding what life as an autistic person must be like and how brave and brilliant Carly really is!
It's a must watch...
I Love Having Fun, I Love Exercise, I Love Original People Who Are Authentic & Make Themselves Vulnerable By Putting Themselves Out There, I Love Fancy 80's/90's Business Attire, Workout Gear & Costume Jewelry, I Love Smart Businesswomen, and I Love Anything That Can Make People Smile - which is why I am TOTALLY IN LOVE with Joanna Rohrback and her PRANCERCISE!!!!!
Many times my AWEstruck Award Winners take on a more serious or deep vibe so I thought it was a nice, refreshing change of pace to award someone who still embodied the spirit of the award (people who inspire and make you say "wow") while adding some unique and magical pep and pizazz to the page :)
It's evident that Joanna loves being fit and I adore how she easily incorporates her own style, both in attire and type of exercise, to her brand. When you watch Joanna's video it is impossible not to smile and feel joy inside which is a big reason why she is this month's magical AWEstruck Award Winner!
Please watch, enjoy & go on and try a lil Prancercise <3
All Images via Push Magazine
Is a total rock star.
A rock star of mental attitude,
a rock star of toughness,
a rock star of fortitude & determination,
a rock star of motor-cross!
At age seven Darius knew what he wanted to do, and that was to race motor-cross and he also knew he wanted to perfect his craft and learn to be the very best through passion and hard work. Darius' skills took him to a race in 2006 at the "Field of Dreams" in Pennsylvania, but this would be the day that would change things forevermore. During the race Darius made a tactical change to avoid a hole in the course, and in doing so went up a slick, outside path of a hill, lost his momentum and fell with his bike crashing onto his back, breaking vertebrae T5-T9 and paralyzing him.
The last option for Darius was giving up though, so despite numerous surgeries, being told by a number of medical professionals he'd never walk or ride again and countless hours of rehabilitation and trying times, Darius took his AWEsome attitude back to the racetrack and after years of falls, getting back up and training, he made his official return to racing in 2011!!
Darius is now sponsored and he's the very first parpalegic rider to be in the running for a national title! Darius also started a clothing line, Live and Learn, to promote his documentary, and that all turned into a huge, positive movement as Darius now also travels the country giving inspirational speeches.
I'm so into this guy's story, motivation, attitude and smile- just a few of the many reasons why Darius Glover is April's AWEstruck Award Winner :)
You've got to check out his vid...
Nine-year-old Conner loved sports and dearly loves his younger brother, Cayden, who has cerebral palsy. What Conner didn't like was the fact that Cayden wasn't able to take part in sporting activities, so a year and a half ago he came up with a solution -they'd compete in triathlons together as a team. When Conner swims, he pulls Cayden in a raft, when he bikes, he pulls Cayden in a trailer, and when he runs, he pushes him in that trailer.
While many hail Conner as a hero, he doesn't quite see it that way saying, “when we went out for the first race this season Cayden had a look on his face like ‘I’m so happy to be back out here, I can’t believe we had to wait this long!’” He's just glad they're able to have tons of fun and spend time together doing something they both love. The ultimate goal, racing in Kona, Hawaii, at the Ironman World Championships of course.
You MUST check out the AWEsome vid below and see for yourself why I chose Conner & Cayden to be my AWEstruck Award Winners!! It will definitely inspire you and touch your heart, and who doesn't love a lil dose of that every now and then?!
20-year-old Hayley Miller spent her teen years homeless, bouncing from hostel to hostel, surrounded by drugs, prostitution and alcohol. Hayley promised herself she'd stay strong, stay focused on her design dreams and not become a victim of circumstance and that's exactly what she did! She ended up moving in with her grandmother and created a business plan to launch her very own line of handbags. Shortly after, she got an investor on board and her first collection is to launch later this month!! Hayley's even caught the attention of high-end department stores who carry other lines like Chloe and Chanel.
I give mad AWEstruck props to this young woman who used sheer grit, determination, willpower and guts to get what she wants out of life! She is proof that there should be no excuses in going after what you want and if you really, truly want something, you will find a way to do it and make it work!
Go Hayley Lou Miller <3 AWEstruck Award Winner!!
New York Magazine::Downtown Manhattan, powerless
It's been over a week since Sandy came ashore and I'm still in a state of shock regarding the devastation she left in her wake. I was definitely and by far one of the most fortunate as the neighborhood of NYC that I live in was spared from major damage but clearly, so many areas and towns (some less than just one mile from me) were completely and utterly wrecked and ravaged and will never be the same. However, thankfully there are some positive, bright, shining moments coming forth from this surreal situation and SO many people are doing their best to give of their time, heart, money, skills and strength to do anything and everything they can to help and this is why November's AWEstruck Award goes to ALL of them! This post is in honor of every single one of the courageous neighbors, strangers, professionals, service-people and friends who want to see these towns recover and want to do their part to lend a helping hand. Here are just a few of the inspiring stories from Hurricane Sandy...
- The NYU Hospital Medical Staff who had to evacuate nearly 300 patients, in the dark, when hospital generators failed. And the nurses who had to manually breathe for infants while carrying them down nine flights of stairs when respirators quit working.
Read all about it here!
- The Firefighters who fought the blaze in Breezy Point, in the midst of the hurricane. Read about these heroes here!
- There are also everyday heroes like this man who saved a neighbor's life when a tree fell on his home, trapping him.
- And the absolutely incredible story of an unidentified "man named Frank" who brought 28-year-old Mike to safety after flood waters and 20-foot waves had him barely clinging to life for five hours.
- And here are two additional galleries of the most intense, powerful photos that came from Hurricane Sandy, this one, courtesy of Buzzfeed and another includes images from the destruction in the Caribbean as well.
- Lastly, below is a video of the policeman who bravely and successfully rescued a family of four from their flooded Staten Island Home ::
A BIG, GIANT THANK YOU to everyone who has pitched in to help or even put their life on the line for another during this unbelievably shocking time. If you'd still like to do something to help- one company, Clean The World, will give one hygiene kit for every dollar donated to those affected by Sandy.
My prayers and thoughts continue to go out to everyone and I know the towns and people will emerge stronger, better and more powerful than ever before!
A global issue that has always grabbed my attention due to how horrific and widespread it is, is human trafficking and thank goodness we have people in the world like Faith Huckel who have the vision and are so compelled to do something and put forth their best efforts to make a positive change!
According to stats there are over 27 MILLION sex slaves in the world and 600,000-800,000 are trafficked across international borders each year! Faith Huckel says she knew it was her mission to combat this terror and opened a long-term, holistic after-care safe house for victims called Restore and this is their mission:
To restore freedom, safety and hope to foreign born survivors of sex trafficking by providing long-term, holistic aftercare services. We partner with local and federal officials as well as other organizations to empower survivors and facilitate the prosecution of traffickers.
I feel super proud that there's a woman here in NYC making such impacting, far-reaching positive changes for the entire world!
I respect and admire Faith Huckel, October's AWEstruck Award Winner!!
For more about sex trafficking and her non-profit, watch below and to donate to her cause and do your part to change the world, click on her pic above!!