Let the adventure begin…

Hiya Everyone,

Today is Dec 23, 2019.

Today is the day we have been planning for two years. TWO years!! Today we load up the car and head into retirement… Well, one of us is! ❤️

GT is finally ready to pull the plug on work. He retired four years ago from a career in Administration, at a Community College. Since then, he has worked part-time at a private college doing the same type of work.

When we met, he was concerned about not working. He explained that his fear was about his identity. How could you just stop doing what you have done for the past 28 years and not feel lost?

The past four years have allowed him to slow down and gradually work toward today. (That being said, they have agreed to allow him to work remotely, so maybe he will just continue as a liaison of sorts.)

So… at 54 years old… I am putting my business on hold and going South for the Winter! How does this work?? How does a Massage Therapist just walk away from her job and take 3-4 months off? Well, we are about to find out!

Last summer while I was finishing my Dr. Sears Master Level Health Coach certification, he was building my “she-shed”. He built me a Massage Studio, so I can work from home.

When we return, I will send a notice to my clients and begin scheduling. I know, some will find a new Therapist, I am expecting this. It’s a physical job and I am looking forward to slowing things down.

My hope is to build a beautiful landscaped back yard, grow some amazing flowers, plant a bigger garden with herbs and vegetables, kayak all summer long and to do a few massages a week.

Kudos to my hubby for being the planner! He makes this dream possible. For those who don’t know Tom, he is the researcher and planner! He has a plan for our future. I am not a planner. I am a good worker bee…. 🐝 I am the person you call when you need another hand.

We are loaded and ready to head out, as soon as we get the mail. Yes… we have to wait for the mail. 🤦🏽‍♀️

Did you know that the post office no longer has that “little yellow card” to forward your mail?? You now have to file a form with the Federal Government, and it may take up to two weeks.  (Update… it took over five weeks to get first piece of mail, and not everything is forwarded.)

I am waiting for one more Christmas present to arrive for the Chupp’s, and my new TSA Driverse License.

Now, about that fandangled new TSA driverse license… When it’s time to renew your license, you will need to bring to the Secretary of State, written documentation of every name chage. Literally, a paper trail.

I married a man at the age of 23 and took his name. (Johnson) It took us just a few months to realize that it wasn’t going to work. Then another nine months to get divorced. 🙄 I kept his last name, because it was easier to pronounce than my maiden name. True story. And… because it made him mad. Yup, I was a brat.

I was Denise Johnson for over twenty years, until I married Paul. I took his name and became Denise Henry. (You know how that story ended… 💔)

In 2015 I married GT and I became Denise Nathe! 💕

I needed a certified birth certificate and three different marriage licenses or the paper trail to show my name changes. (Sounds easy enough… except that I am not a good record keeper.) Thank God for the internet and the ability to pay for documents online!


Today is Valentine’s Day!! Happy Happy Heart Day to everyone…. even my single friends. You deserve to feel love too.

By the way, I did get my driver’s license and the last Christmas Present. It was like all of the stars aligned!! 🙌🏾 I just love when shit works out like it’s supposed too! 🌟 🙏🏾

We have been in Alabama for over six weeks!!

I would love to tell you that it is a magnificent, magical, adventurous, warm and sunny place. Well, It is some of those things… but not all! ☀️

It has been an adjustment.

Let me explain… when we go on vacation, we like to explore and find things to do. We eat out, plan excursions and see the sights. We usually have a week or so to cram it all in…so we are on the move and constantly looking forward to the next day.

We have had to re-train our minds. This is not vacation. This is our “Winter home”. Otherwise we would be rushing and trying to fill each day. This is not vacation.

I know to some… this is vacation. (I am not working… and I don’t have to worry about the electric bill…) But if we are going to stay within our budget and be able to afford to do this annually… we have to change our mindset. This is our Winter home. This is not vacation.

SO… what have I been doing? Primarily, fighting with myself to not feel like it’s vacation! 😆

I joined a yoga studio and have attended a few classes. I took a couple of jewelry making classes from a cool beading store, and have also learned how to work with a few new textures.

We have listened to some great music and have become fans of a few new bands. We had my nephew and his family visit for a week, we played tour guides and ate some amazing food.

I have made a bunch of inventory and finally have my Etsy page up and running. **This was a big goal!**


What haven’t I done? 80% of the things I thought I wanted to do… Such as, read lots of good books, lay in the sun, watch the waves, meditate more, work my 12 steps, walk the beach daily, ride my bike, do more yoga. (Basically… become a healthier more spiritual version of me.)


Because that is just, how it is.

In my mind, I always have a scenario of how things will look. (Even though I am not the planner like GT is… **Remember? I am “the supervisor!” 😉)

In my mind, this was going to be little escape. A 90 day pause from my normal life. A time out from all of the little things that pull at me daily… 90 days, of whatever I wanted or needed it to be.

Well that is exactly what it has been.

And… exactly what it has NOT been!

I have learned through my 12 step recovery work, “Wherever I go… there, I will be.” Read that again.

I don’t get to take a vacation from life. I do not, get to take a time out from the way I do things. (Remember? “How you do anything… is how you do everything!”)

I can however, retrain myself… if, I am disciplined and really want the change.

What do I really want to change?

What do I really want to accomplish?

I am reading a good book.

“The Wisdom of the Shamans” by Don Jose Ruiz. (What the ancient masters can teach us about love and life.) You may recognize the name, his father was the author of “The Four Agreements”. (Don Miguel Ruiz) I highly recommend both books- really!!

In the book, he talks often about our addiction to suffering.

Yes, our addiction to suffering.

For some reason that really hit home. I am at a point in the book where you get to take charge of your suffering… And change your path. I will keep you posted.

I also watched a really good podcast for 12 days, Recovery with Russell Brand. It was hilarious, deep, authentic and bold. He is so ADHD, he swears and is a male version of me… okay, maybe not… but I seriously love him. Especially his accent and qwirkiness!

He talked in detail about working the 12 steps in our lives, and how many of us has this illusion that we know what is best. He said, “The idea that we should know the outcome, the right way, or how it turns out is complete horseshit. We are playing God.”

That made sense.

Why do we think this? Because we all do it. Come on… be real. How may of us have had a committee meeting with our co-workers in our head? Sometimes… we even respond with little jabs and play out the scenario to feel victorious.

Sometimes we get so worked up before an actual event, that we talk ourselves out of even going.

We play it all out like we think it’s going to be… even though, we are directing this imaginary play… and, we don’t like the outcome, we can’t seem to change the narrative… so, we just don’t show up or we cancel our plans.

Why don’t we play out a winning scenario? A kinder scenario?  Why don’t we have calm committee meetings, where we find answers together? Why can’t we all be the winner? Why does there have to be a winner?

Why can’t we allow the day to unfold without knowing the outcome?

Because we were never taught any other way. Maybe nobody ever taught us how to be a team player or how to rely on others?

Why is it so hard to just be? Isn’t that- the definition of faith or inner knowing?

I read a beautiful quote yesterday from a local musician. Dede Adler posted on her Instagram, “Once you can trust your own resilience, you can open up to vulnerability.”

Yesssssssss! 👏🏽 🙌🏾 👏🏽 Thank YOU!!

When I trust my ability to be okay… I can roll with the day. My past has shown me that I can overcome, sometimes, I can even come out, better.

If we can make peace with knowing, truly knowing… that we will be all right, nothing can hurt us.

When we can set aside all of the inner chatter about needing to know the outcome, not looking like a fool, not being the best, or succeeding… we can be free.


We all have at least one friend who needs to be in control.

Maybe you are that friend.

Maybe you can’t ask for help? Maybe you or your friend needs to show everyone how good you are at everything? Is this really success?

If I need to prove every little thing, to everyone… I am not free.

If I need everyone, to see and applaud my every move, I am not succeeding. I am a slave to the masses.

Some of us didn’t have support as a child, so we don’t know how to trust others or ask for help.

We grew up without people we could count on.

Now as adults, it is difficult for us to ask for help. We even tell ourselves that people will laugh at us for not knowing how to do things.

We even tell ourselves that people will snicker or talk behind our backs. We sometimes tell ourselves that we should know how to do this… or that nobody really wants to hep us…

Lies. Your inner dialogue is full of lies.

Some of us couldn’t count on people to be in our corner to cheer us on or to applaud our achievements. Now as adults, we feel like we need to keep reaching and reaching… Trying to get to the top. (There is no top people… you will “Not arrive”!)

Some of us will always need the last word and we will always correct you. Always. It makes us feel smarter or better. God forbid that you should know more than me.

Some of us will never speak up. We don’t have a voice. We were never taught how to have our own opinion.

Why is all of this so challenging? Why can some of us be okay with being wrong… and others feel like it will kill us?

Why can some people speak their truth with love and conviction and others just sound like they are trying to “Captain the Titanic”?

If you, or someone you know, battles with this inner dialogue… or you find that your life is a constant battle of wills- you are not alone. There is a solution and there is balance. Promise. You are not your thoughts.

We can change.

You do not have to keep suffering. You are not alone.

If you are struggling today… reach out.

You have survived far more than this and you are not going to fail today.

There is hope.

There is a place, within us all… that brings that peace. There is a place that holds that love. You do not need to keep reaching. You are there.

You are love.

The world is full of beautiful, wonderful people who have found or tapped into this peace. Build a tribe with these people. Model their behavior. Fake it… until you make it. Fake it, until you become it.

You do not need to step on anyone or prove to everyone… if you do, then you are in the wrong tribe.

Find the friends that acknowledge you, support you, embrace you, ones that will cry with you, friends that do not judge you and are there for you. Find them.

You still have time…

Maybe this is not a bunch of people? Maybe it is just one? Maybe it’s time to be this person to someone else?

Some of us are lucky enough to be in a relationship with this kind of person. GT is my person. He is my cheerleader. He is my support. He believes in me. He teaches me.

Today is Heart Day. Today is Love Day.

Begin with you.

You are worth it.

Until next time, Peace and Love Peeps.