Living to See Beauty

Happy Monday everyone!

I’m actually publishing this post from Charlotte this morning.  I’m staying at my brother’s house after a weekend of travel and blog conferences.  The amazing team from Blogging Concentrated was in Raleigh and Charlotte this weekend so I decided to take a little state tour to hear both of their presentations.  I picked up some great tips in the two days of seminars and I have some really wonderful ideas for the future of  this site.  I’m feeling very inspired and ready to bring even more new energy to Running in a Skirt!  We have a great community here and I know there is more good stuff to come.

I’m staying in Charlotte through lunch today to see one of  my college roommates, Lori for lunch and then driving back up the mountain to Asheville this afternoon.

Living to See Beauty

Today I actually wanted to talk about something that has been on my mind a lot lately.   I call it living to see beauty.

I went to a yoga class the other day and the instructor talked the benefits of being at a place mentally where you can actually see joy and the beauty in the world.  Basically, how you can get your body and mind so stirred up and crazy that you don’t even see the gorgeous world around around you.

living to see beauty

How many times have you been driving around at dusk, but totally missed even glancing at the sunset?  Or landscaped your yard, yet missed the best blooms?

Sometimes our minds just aren’t open to seeing all the beautiful stuff and we miss out.

I don’t know about you guys, but I find myself in that stir crazy place often.

I make lists after lists trying to get everything done and I have a hard time trying to shut my mind off.  Even with this new “less crazy” life I have now, I am still juggling a lot.  It is easy to miss the entire point of life in this state.


I hate snow.  It makes me nervous and gives me anxiety.  When it starts to snow my mind is not in a good place.  When we had that last big snow storm a few weeks ago, I was already burnt out of winter weather when I woke up to this:

asheville snow feb 2015 edit

Now I know a lot of you are thinking: beautiful winter wonderland!

But my mind was just thinking of all the extras on my list because of the snow.  I didn’t even take time to notice how beautiful it actually was.

Snow Feb 2015-43-1

I didn’t even want to go out in it.

At all.

I probably would have never left the house that day, but our driveway was a mess.

The hubs went out to shovel it because he needed to try to get to work at some point.  After a few minutes I felt bad that he was working by himself so I put on ALL THE CLOTHES and went out to help him, but I wasn’t happy about it.

As I am trying to figure out how to help the hubs (we only have one shovel,) I see Reina.

Snow Feb 2015-70-1

Even with her bum leg, she is running around and having the best time.

Snow Feb 2015-86-1

She chases snow balls like a kid and keeps going after them even though they are impossible to catch.

She clearly sees the beauty.

Snow Feb 2015-26-1

Her love of snow is infectious, so I start throwing her some snowballs.  Eventually I take my snowball and start turning it into a snowman.  After several attempts at not being about to get the larger ball to form the hubs jumps in and helps.  Since I grew up in Florida, building snowmen is not in my bag of tricks.

After just a few minutes, we get this big guy.  He is a little awkward, but so much fun.

snowman asheville feb 2015 edit

It finally hit me that by getting all stuck in my head about all the problems the snow causes, I could have missed the true beauty and joy in a snow day.

Isn’t finding a way to see the beauty and joy in life the true foundation of living a healthy balanced life?

julie_snowman edit

This post hopefully runs deeper than just a silly snowman, but I was just trying to make a point.

Try to find that snowman even on those days where you think you will never get caught up again.  Don’t be so busy with all the to-dos that you miss the real joy in this world.

And whatever you do, make time to glance at a sunset every once in while.


I want to continue to figure out what helps me settle my mind and get to that place where I can see the joy.  I know yoga, running and prayer are my two biggest stress relievers and really help me clear my head and connect to the world around me.  Perhaps something else works for you?  I challenge you to find whatever helps you the most and do it more.

My goal is life is to look beyond the ice and live to see beauty everyday.

Not just on snow days.

Happy marvelous Monday everyone!  I hope you have a BEAUTIFUL day.  Tomorrow I’m back to regular blog business with a dinner that brings together the best of the Italian and Mexican flavors.  You might be surprised at how well it actually works together.  See you then!

And of course, have a Marvelous Monday! Thanks for the linkup Katie.

Your turn!

What are your stress relievers?

Do you ever find yourself so wrapped up in life that you miss the beauty?


  1. […] 23. Live to see beauty. […]

  2. […] made it all worth it though.  It came and went in less than a minute.  Makes me glad I was living to see the beauty, because otherwise I would have missed […]

  3. Mary Beth Jackson March 11, 2015 at 4:55 am - Reply

    love your post! We do need to stop and smell the flowers and really look at them 🙂 it is tough to shut our minds off- I am loving my yoga class and I am getting better at doing just that- enjoying that 75 minutes and being present- it takes some work but the pay off is beautiful!

  4. Jess @hellotofit March 10, 2015 at 11:16 am - Reply

    Love this post, Julie! Seeing beauty in the world is hard for me when I have other things in my mind, or due to my similar feelings about snow :P. Your post today is inspiring!

  5. Ivanna March 10, 2015 at 7:40 am - Reply

    This is so important. I often am in awe of the sunrise across the mountain tops here in Colorado. its breathtaking I feel so grateful when I take the moment to see the beauty around me. Great post.

  6. I think many of us have been getting burnt out about the Winter sticking around but…you’re right. There is beauty all around us (as Pocahontas said…) and we just have to change our attitude and reflection. Thank you for the reminder!

  7. Danyelle Musselman March 9, 2015 at 5:03 pm - Reply

    I showed this post to Mariah and she is super jealous of your snow and your dogs! I might send her to come visit, lol!

  8. Emilie March 9, 2015 at 3:07 pm - Reply

    Sometimes I wonder if I had my dog’s attitude towards life, how much happier and less stressed would I be? That little dude is happy no matter what we throw at him. I can relate to this post so much – it’s a fantastic reminder to pay attention and appreciate the little things.

    • JulieWunder March 9, 2015 at 7:00 pm - Reply

      I know. The only thing that seems to upset my dogs is when I leave them, but then they are so quick to forgive and forget! haha! They are a great reminder to live in the moment.

  9. Melissa @ Freeing Imperfections March 9, 2015 at 3:06 pm - Reply

    This post resonates with me a lot right now, as I’ve been busy and not really focused on seeing the good in anything lately. I just got a new camera though and took some pictures around the house. it’s amazing how if you look at things from a different perspective, they look so beautiful.

    • JulieWunder March 9, 2015 at 7:01 pm - Reply

      Oh noooooo!!!! Bed rest? I’m so sorry. I’m heading over to your blog now to see what happened.
      I totally agree and think that through a picture it is nice too really see the beauty.

  10. Amanda - RunToThefinish March 9, 2015 at 3:05 pm - Reply

    Yoga is so wonderful for that reminder. i do try to take in wherever I’m running, but sometimes I need the little nudge from someone else!

  11. Jaime March 9, 2015 at 9:24 am - Reply

    At Blogging Concentrated, they had a good point on Saturday about shutting down the computer and spending time with family. I’m often having to remind myself of that. Otherwise, I’d miss out on so much!

  12. Blane Sherer March 9, 2015 at 9:19 am - Reply

    Great Blog today Julie !
    Perspective and frame of mind are very important.
    I have a co worker from southern Mississippi who has a young daughter. He was upset because he was not able to build a good snowman. We gave him some pointers. Poor man didn’t even know to role the snow to build the snowman.

    • JulieWunder March 9, 2015 at 7:03 pm - Reply

      Haha! I thought I knew, but when it came to the execution, I failed. Southerners!
      Thanks for stopping by today.

  13. Susie @ SuzLyfe March 9, 2015 at 9:08 am - Reply

    Gorgeous. What a fabulous way to start the week.

  14. I love the idea of “living to see beauty” and actually feel the same way about snow these days! It is such a pain (especially at this stage in the game) but hold so much beauty – if you look for it, and fun – if you go for it! I think it’s important to open your eyes to the beauty all around you, or to the situation you find yourself in!

  15. Terry B March 9, 2015 at 7:42 am - Reply

    What a beautiful article! Thanks for reminding us to take a deep breath, settle down and remember the important things. It feels so good to find the snowman! So often our joy comes when we least expect it.

    • JulieWunder March 9, 2015 at 7:05 pm - Reply

      That is a great way to put it Terry. I think sometimes I am waiting for the next big “fun” thing that you forget the little things are sometimes really the best.

  16. Dan Steadman March 9, 2015 at 7:15 am - Reply

    stress reliever is a good run…at my old job, I would be so wrapped up in things and working a bunch of hours I missed the beauty of my kids growing up a little…this past soccer season was the best in a long time I actually was not super stressed about work I could enjoy watch the boys playing…

    • JulieWunder March 9, 2015 at 7:06 pm - Reply

      So glad you were able to switch jobs and take in these moments this past year.

  17. […] linking up today with Lean Lena for Tasty Tuesday.  And the Meatless Monday linkup!  Thanks […]

  18. I absolutely find myself getting wrapped up and not seeing beauty in things, I think that’s a normal part of life. But I agree, it’s important every once in a while to take a step back and actually enjoy it! I need to get better at this too! Great post!

    • JulieWunder March 9, 2015 at 7:06 pm - Reply

      Thanks Sue! Too much thinking time in the car on my road trip. haha.

  19. Heather @fitncookies March 9, 2015 at 6:20 am - Reply

    What a great reminder- especially with snow this time of year. We are surrounded by so much beauty, but we have to want to see it. It’s easy to say the negative and be upset about things instead of being happy. Great point- I’ll be working on this!

    • JulieWunder March 9, 2015 at 7:07 pm - Reply

      Thanks Heather! I will too. Hopefully spring will be here soon.

  20. Laurie Morris March 9, 2015 at 6:03 am - Reply

    Julie, I needed this today…thanks so much! Quiet time, prayer, music, dancing and journaling are my ways. And when I get to come to those beautiful mountains, I always R, R, & R !!! (Relax, Rock and Read)!

    • JulieWunder March 9, 2015 at 7:07 pm - Reply

      Thanks Laurie. Love these mountains. So much beauty here!

  21. Jenny March 9, 2015 at 5:17 am - Reply

    I loved this, Julie! My morning prayer and quiet time are my ‘reset’ button everyday. If I start the day with the right heart, I have such an improved perspective! Enjoy Charlotte this morning! I heard it was full-on springtime there yesterday!

    • JulieWunder March 9, 2015 at 7:08 pm - Reply

      It was! I was inside for most of the day but when I walked out it was 70 degrees!
      I agree about starting the day right. It seems like the mood I allow myself to have within the first hour of the day can set the tone for me.

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