Expanding Heart | One Little Word

This month in Ali Edwards’s workshop One Little Word, the assignment is to choose a daily practice relating to your word.

My word for this year is EXPAND.

I know this month is a going to be a little hectic–there will be lots of appointments and meetings related to fostering, lots of vet appointments for my cat Charcoal (whom we just discovered has diabetes), a weekend getaway to see my brother (and probably Kristin!), some exciting weekend plans like seeing Newsies on tour, and some extended family things that will be extremely tough emotionally.

Because I know I’m in for an emotional rollercoaster and a lot of stress this month, I’m planning on documenting a thing each day that makes me feel like my heart is swelling. I’m practicing having an expanding heart. It’s a way to pay attention to the positive things that are going on and is a practice of gratitude.

I’ll compile them all together at the end of the month on a scrapbook page.

Practicing Expanding Heart | One Little Word

Just a few days in, I already love the practice of documenting the little things that are expanding my heart. For February 1, I have an adorable picture of our foster baby and Jonas snuggled up in a cart at the grocery store–seeing my kids’ love for each other is a heart expander for sure (and calm, loving moments when trying to shop with two tiny humans rather than them trying to escape and pull everything off of the shelves is something to be thankful for too).

On the second, my local book club met at a restaurant to discuss our latest selection, Consider the Fork. I went early so I could have dinner by myself and read Hamilton. Excellent food is something I certainly appreciate, as is the opportunity to have some time to myself. But most of all, friends gathering to discuss insights and opinions makes my heart swell.

Noting things that expand my heart | One Little Word

Jake and I downloaded gif keyboards and have been overusing them with glee. Jake made a gif for me of a moment that makes me swoon in the movie Across the Universe, just because he knew it was a little thing that would make me happy. So yesterday, I reflected on how much the small, silly things Jake does expands my heart and how lucky we are to be the same kind of weird together.

I think the practice of really paying attention to the little things that make me happy–pausing to reflect on them and documenting them to be able to look back on them–is really going to help me stay centered this month.

Are you participating in One Little Word? What are you practicing this month?