Gratitude Jar 2019

Sometimes I wake up and my first thought is I’m tired, I’m going to be late, I hate traffic, I’m hungry. If I don’t get myself out of this, small negativity (as insignificant as it may be) and really fast I spend the rest of the day not feeling good enough.

I moan and swear at traffic on my way to work, I judge people constantly, I don’t feel good enough or good about anything! Not thin enough. Not clever enough. Unnoticed and unappreciated. And the list goes on and on, so does the mood. It’s a horrible circle.

So I get up, I’m tired, might get to work a bit late and hungry but I climb in the car and I pray out loud. I prayed before, but this year I changed things. I started by climbing in the car and talking to God out loud while I drive. I haven’t listened to radio for a long while, because usually when I’m finished talking I then listen to voice notes on my phone or send some out.

My talks always start with gratitude this changes my drive and my whole day. My outlook changes.

Introducing this year’s gratitude jar – it may look small but it’s filled with lots of little notes and with a great amount of gratitude. So many blessings written in them.

Also folding these notes into that origami finger game thingy was so hard!!! I will never do this again 😊 what on earth was I thinking?

And so I will go into 2020 on a positive note, with hope and confidence….

In everything give thanks.  1 Thes 5:18

Why don’t you add a gratitude jar to your habits of well being for next year? I am sure you will love it. I have been doing this since 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 ♥ ♥ ♥ 

Looking Back on 2019

What a year this has been!! Some days were low some days were high.

But my God on the mountain, was my God in the valley and when things were going wrong…..I prayed and I know he’ll make them right again.

For most part it was a good year and I am looking forward to a fresh new start in the new 2020 century!

What did you do in 2019 that you’d never done before?

I boxed. Yip I have started boxing. This is huge thing for me

Did you keep your new years’ resolutions, and will you make more for next year?

No, but then I didn’t make any resolutions at all for this year. Same as last year, it’s better not to make any so I’m not disappointed

How will you be spending New Year’s Eve?

Probably at home, family dinner…early to bed

Did anyone close to you die?

Not anyone really close, thank God for that, but I did go to some funerals this year

What would you like to have in 2020 that you lacked in 2019?

Do a lot more of this –

Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.

1 Peter 5:7

I want to do more fun things more me time and little weekend getaways

What date from 2020 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?

Ed Sheeran concert and weekend away with my cous! It was glorious!

And on my mom’s birthday, our 4×4 caught fire while parked in the garage! Mayhem perused. Luckily Tigs was home, things could have been a lot worse

What was your biggest achievement of the year?

Two jobs, I maintained and performed two different jobs

What was your biggest failure?

I failed as a mom, I think I have…it’s something inside that I struggled with. I keep asking God to forgive me for not being a good example to my kids

Did you suffer illness or injury?

Apart from the usual migraines, nothing new or different. They are less frequent but more painful, gradually getting worse with more nausea and vomiting

What was the best thing you bought?

We bought a car. Tigs had the worst car, he deserved something better, he now has the best car in the household

Where did most of your money go?

Bills, bills, bills.

What song will always remind you of 2019?

Senorita by Shawn Mendes & Camila Cabello and Beautiful by Ed Sheeran

What do you wish you’d done more of?

I wish I had danced more and laughed a whole lot more. More walking and exercising

What do you wish you’d done less of?

Worry. I wish I had worried less and prayed a whole lot more

What were your favorite TV shows?

They did not let me watch TV this year

Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?

I still hate the same person of last year

What was the best book you read?

I read a few novels, mostly on loan from a friend and can’t remember any of the names. Started reading Becoming (M Obama), have not finished yet.

What was your greatest musical discovery?

Worth It by Fifth Harmony…..yeah I actually felt my car bounce to this on full blast it unusually funny. One by U2 was a second likable discovery

What was your favorite film of this year?

Bohemian Rhapsody in late December 2018 and anything I watched this year could not match up to Queen

What did you do on your birthday?

Most awesome family lunch and lots of spoils

What kept you sane?

ART class and my close and special friends

Who do you miss?

My dad

Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2019

Sometimes life’s turns are not what we anticipated or planned – “oh, no, this can’t be happening again, what do I do now?”.

Its sudden twists take us on a path we might not like but we always end up where we were supposed to be. God is in control all the time. Pray and have a little faith…♥

May God always grant you a sunbeam to warm you. Happy New 2020.

This has become a must-do-post for me, since Looking Back on 2018, 2017 and 2016. I enjoy reading the old ones too they remind me of how things have changed and how much I have changed over these last three years.

I went to the sea

This is the last of the fish paintings and I thought I’d share the fado music that came to mind when I was painting

Fui ao mar buscar sardinhas

I went to the sea to fetch sardines

To give to my love

I got lost by the little windows

That lurked by the steam


Peeking out of the steam

I saw the face of a Frenchman

And which ever way it goes

I am going to sea again….

….a continuation of my previous post Little Fish

Little fish

There is a song that I remember from our famous fado singer Amalia Rodrigues that is called I went to the sea to fetch sardines…

And so it kind of goes with the theme of my last paintings. The inspiration did not come form the song but from a meal I had at a restaurant recently where I saw something very similar.

My sister also started sending me pics from her Pinterest board. She has this fascination for all fish crafts.  – – Correction: All crafts. Not just fish shaped ones 🙂

And actually, this reminds me of one of her recent trips where she bought herself two or three clay sardines, hand painted in the beautiful blues of the azulejos that is so typical of Portugal, and somehow her boys decided that’s the one thing they’d play with….and of course they broke them! She was devastated and furious!

Anyway I do love the little fish shapes and not very different from my sister I’m also crazy about every kind of Portuguese craft made of clay. And the fish paintings are just as famous, I found a lot of inspiration online and have made up my own paintings for Christmas gifts.


The black sardines are painted Galo de Barcelos style. The blue sardines are painted in azulejo colors and styles. When I look at them one thing comes to mind – Portugal.

A bit of fun and nostalgia feeling for the year end xoxo


Birds eye view





A lover of the sea

The perfect word to describe me, someone who loves the sea or ocean ♥