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Our Summer of Gratitude

Our Summer of Gratitude

This summer we launched our Summer of Gratitude. There have been so many things to be grateful for over here at Tiny Tags, from new product launches (hello Nameplate Bracelets!), to new collaborations and opportunities, to our amazing community, but what we're especially grateful for, is our team! As we wrap up the season, each team member reflects on what they have been the most grateful for this summer. 

 As I reflect back on what I am grateful for this summer it is absolutely that my little sister, Kara, and her family - including my little niece and nephew - moved back from Carlsbad, CA to Boston, MA. Kara and I are 9 years apart and she is my best friend, so having spent the last six years 3000 miles away has been so hard. I am so grateful that I can spend more time with her and be a real aunt to my niece and nephew.  Family is everything and to be together after all these years apart has made my summer.

 

This summer I am grateful for family, friends, and fresh starts:

For me, the past year was full of ups and downs and some major, unexpected changes in my life.  Like many, the pandemic completely changed my normal routines.  My job at the time was incredibly stressful.  My family was a mix of either entirely unconcerned or completely terrified of covid, which made seeing family, and “doing the right thing” almost impossible, but the hardest part of the last year was that my grandfather (92), one of the most important people in my life, was in a nursing home battling Parkinson’s disease and dementia. 

As a family, we took turns visiting my grandfather every single day in the nursing home during “normal” times in order to help him with basic tasks that were becoming more difficult for him, and to help him hold on to cherished memories.  Shortly after covid started to surge in the states, his nursing home closed the doors to visitors completely with almost no notice.  Trying to explain to my grandfather that we could no longer visit was heartbreaking, but we tried to stay positive – my grandfather was on the first floor and had a window facing the main entrance, so we went to his window every day to wave to him, try to put a smile on his face, and hold up signs that told him we loved him.

As my grandfather’s condition deteriorated in the nursing home, another major change occurred in my life – someone else who was very important to me, who promised to be by my side through thick and thin, sickness and health, decided to walk away.  My “new normal” wasn’t exactly anything I pictured or planned for, but through it all, it became clear who my true family and friends were, and they stuck by me every step of the way.

Fast forward several months, and things seemed to be getting better, covid cases were down and things were starting to open back up.  I was finally able to visit my grandfather inside and give him a big hug – I didn’t know it at the time, but that would be my last visit with him.  I ended up losing my grandfather in April, and it was during that very difficult time that I realized how truly grateful I am for my family and my friends that have been by my side through it all.  They are the ones that have been there for me through the good and bad, they are my support system, my cheerleaders, my shoulders to cry on, and my voices of reason.  They are always there when I need them most, and I am so lucky to have them.

Going through tough changes over the past year was trying, but it also made me take a step back and re-evaluate what is truly important to me, and I decided to make some changes of my own.  I now have an amazing new job at Tiny Tags, and I am focused on doing more of what I love with the people I love, and I’m not taking a minute of it for granted.  I am so grateful for my family and friends, and for this opportunity of a fresh perspective and fresh start!

 

 

I have so much to be grateful for! I was lucky enough to have an amazing summer that included time at the beach and with my kids. In addition to precious family time, I'm grateful for a small thing that puts a smile on my face daily: my plants! While I have many indoor plants, this was my first year planting some outside. I also planted some herbs and tomatoes - it’s so much fun for the kids to check on the tomatoes and eat them when they’re ready. It's such a small thing, but it brings me joy! 

 

This has been the summer of nature! I am so grateful that my family and I were able to spend the summer in the countryside. We’ve made the most of our WFH life and spent most of this summer enjoying the woods, the lake and just being together. Having this space just to decompress and tune into one another has brought us closer together. Even the car ride to and from the house has become a special ritual; from packing to playing tunes to cracking jokes to pass the time. We’ve created lasting memories with family and friends in the house already. As the summer comes to an end, I feel lucky to have been able to enjoy this precious time. My kids are getting older and I am so grateful that they now have a place to truly unwind and be free to run around in the woods without any of the city distractions. 

 

This summer I am extremely grateful my children have the opportunity to live close to their grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins. After moving back to Boston two years ago, we finally have the ability to spend time together. Moving to a new state, starting a new school, and then being hit with Covid made for a tough year. But this Summer has brought all of us so much joy, just with the chance to be near one another!  

 

I am so grateful for my boys and being able to spend time with them. I never could have imagined loving being a dad as much as I do. 

 

This summer I am grateful for our return to some sense of normalcy. I am grateful to be able to spend time with friends and family again and begin to travel once more. Our family opted to stay closer to home this summer and take advantage of some of our State and National Parks.  I am especially thankful to live in an area with so much beauty and to be able to enjoy the great outdoors, even more so with family.

 

This past year was full of unknowns for so many of us, and navigating new territory that we never even imagined. Focusing on gratitude has helped us during these uncertain times and reminds us how lucky we are! What have you been grateful for this summer?  

 


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Tiny Tags Presents

A Journey of Love

Melissa Clayton, CEO + Founder of Tiny Tags shares her story and the lessons learned along the way.

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