Discover Yourself The Gratitude Series

Gratitude for Every Mood – Introducing Terri Webster Schrandt

November 9, 2017
Taking stock



My guest writer today is Terri Webster Schrandt from Second Wind Leisure.  I have known Terri for a couple of years now and in fact just recently celebrated that friendship on Facebook.  Although we have never met face to face we have many things in common, especially keeping fit and healthy as we age.  Terri is also a wonderful photographer and posts many beautiful photographs on her website Second Wind Leisure.  In fact, she also wrote a book about photography ‘Better Blogging with Photography’.

As part of my Month of Gratitude, Terri is sharing her thoughts on her life experiences and what she is especially grateful for.  I do encourage you to check out Terri’s website and social media links which are located at the end of this post.

Terri writes:

Gratitude for Every Mood


When Sue approached me to write a guest post for November with the theme of “gratitude” I had no idea what I could write. Recent months have proven that I have much for which to be grateful.

The theme for my life in 2017 sadly, has been this new emotion called anxiety. We are becoming a little too familiar with each other. I have a new respect for folks who experience anxiety as a result of depression. Although I exhibited symptoms of mild depression from SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder), signs of anxiety showed themselves.

June Gloom

I participated in the Sentence a Day June in Review with other bloggers for the first time. I was grateful for the opportunity to link up with new bloggers and read the stories of their busy lives. A Sentence a day – June in Review

The month of June was busy as you can tell if you stopped to read the post. Between road trips, a family engagement and a windsurf clinic, anxiety was lurking about.

Despite anxiety’s flirtation, I found I was grateful for many things. I got to spend a weekend with my 80-year old father in the Sierra foothills. Although my windsurfing clinic didn’t turn out as I expected due to my limitations, at the end of the month the wind put on a fabulous show enabling me to photograph some action images of pro and amateur windsurfers. Sometimes one does not have to physically engage in a sport to really appreciate its attraction.  And for that, my semi-bruised body and I are grateful.

Dog Days of July


The mood for much of July was fear and sadness, when my puppy Brodie was surprisingly diagnosed with canine parvo virus. Surprised because Brodie was given all of his puppy vaccinations. Not only is treating the disease scary in and of itself because the dog must be isolated due to the extreme threat of infection, but also that same treatment is incredibly expensive.

If you missed it, you can read more about Brodie’s experience in the post: Dog Days of Summer: Recognizing Canine Parvo-Virus 

Despite my fear and sadness of maybe losing Brodie and watching hard-earned money fly out the window, I managed to find immediate gratitude in the situation. The veterinary staff were incredibly kind, loving and competent; communicating with me every step of the way. I was told that because we were diligent in giving Brodie his shots during his first four months of life, we had a case to request a refund from the pharmaceutical company who issued the vaccine. Brodie is happy and healthy as he now nears his first birthday.

In early September, we received the check from Merck Pharmaceuticals reimbursing us for the entire amount ($2300.). My gratitude is endless for these compassionate doctors and staff who care for our beloved pets, and for the office manager who advocated on our behalf.

July proved to be a month of celebrations. My father turned 81, we spent a weekend in Lake Tahoe with friends, and my blog celebrated 1000 followers. I was speechless with gratitude for these milestones.

August Was the Breaks

As if dealing with a sick pup wasn’t enough, breaking my right hand while routinely walking my dogs just did the trick in creating my mood of…helplessness!

I am grateful to my poor, stressed out, overworked hubby who literally was my right hand on many occasions for three weeks. Tasks like cutting a steak, turning a lock on a sticky front door, or merely lifting the heavy ice chest into the car, were painful.  Being fiercely independent takes a backseat when your hand is in a brace. I can say at this point I was grateful the orthopedist did not put a cast on my hand/wrist.

I also took a “sort-of” blogging break, just participating in the weekly photo challenges. I had intended to write my No Excuses Fitness book, and prep for teaching in September, but my feelings of helplessness, coupled with my new buddy anxiety, with a dash of pain for flavor, stopped the writing in its tracks. I simply ran out of gas. I needed to focus on preparing for the semester’s three classes—that was a priority I could not negotiate!

In my 20 months of success in Weight Watchers (losing 30 pounds), I gained three pounds in July and August even though I still followed a modified workout regimen. Failure was starting to feel like a new friend. The vicious circle of pain, doubt, stress and failure played with my mind and almost convinced me to give up the blog, the book, and windsurfing.

But again, August did not go by without some opportunities for gratitude! My blog and I were featured on Jodie’s Touch of Style

helping her demonstrate outdoors fashion in hiking and water sports. My blog’s page views went ca-ray-zee that week! Folks in the US were grateful to view the total solar eclipse, an experience that only comes around once or twice in a lifetime.

Wake Me Up When September Ends


That used to be my anthem song when I spent intense summers (and the rest of the year) overseeing 20+ swimming pools for parks and rec. Although this summer had its ups and downs, I was secretly glad to be back into the routine of working…in my case, teaching as a lecturer at a nearby university. Until…

I received news from our department chair that university-wide changes will have far-reaching effects for my job. It seems to be time to dust off the resume and perhaps seek part-time work. Part of the formula for me to take retirement at age 55 was to be able to teach 12-15 units a year, and this is expected to change.

July’s sadness and fear morphed into August’s helplessness, which made way for September’s uncertainty. I am grateful for my three-year contract and the support of the faculty. Being one of many long-time practitioners able to teach in the parks and rec major offers that much more depth to the students’ educational experience.

Despite this uncertainty, I am actually excited for an opportunity to seek beyond my comfort zone and explore a different act—perhaps my third? I’m thinking of becoming a Certified Personal Trainer—what do you think?

September also provided two opportunities to network and meet with other bloggers locally in Sacramento as WordCamp  and International Food Bloggers Conferences came to town on two separate weekends.

Even with the looming uncertainty, I had more than my share of fun meeting and spending time with new (and veteran) bloggers. I am grateful to the sponsors of WordCamp Sacramento 2017 for providing their support and my FREE (yes, free) ticket to two days of information-packed WordPress sessions. The IFBC had so much swag and free food and goodies, I had to skip weight watchers the week after!

Overall, I am grateful for my blogging friends, my family, and my various hobbies. While wildfires are raging in the West (at this writing) and the south is dealing with severe hurricanes and storms, I know that life is anything but static, and change, good and bad will happen.


“The world will go as it will, not as you or I would have it.” (quoted by various characters from Marion Zimmer Bradley’s Darkover series)


With every challenge, there is opportunity and a reason to be grateful. Thank you, Sue, for allowing me to focus on the positive energy of gratitude.

Meet Terri:


Terri is a writer, self-published author and retired recreation and parks practitioner living in Northern California. As a university lecturer teaching leisure education in the recreation and parks major, Terri takes leisure very seriously because it involves one-third of our lives…really!

Her active lifestyle involves windsurfing, stand-up paddling, camping, reading, writing, walking the dogs, traveling, and… Second Wind Leisure Perspectives is her blog about leisure, fitness and photography.


Follow Terri:

Blog: Second Wind Leisure Perspectives







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  • Reply Terri Webster Schrandt November 9, 2017 at 03:32

    Hi Sue, thanks again for including me on your lovely blog! I hope you are back to normal after your trip and enjoying spring! I’m happy to report that my lecturer position is intact and stable for at least the next three years, so now worries on finding a part time job! And for that I am very grateful!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric November 9, 2017 at 08:27

      It is always a pleasure having you as a guest Terri and fabulous news about your lecturing position, it certainly is a load off your mind. Have a lovely day and thanks again for being my guest. x

  • Reply Toni Pike November 9, 2017 at 05:57

    Thanks for your great article, Terri. I also have to work hard to keep my anxiety under check, and have always struggled with my weight. Each day I have to make a new commitment to staying slim. I’m so pleased to hear that you’re back with your students for another three years.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric November 9, 2017 at 08:24

      It was a great article wasn’t it Toni! I always enjoy Terri’s work. Have a lovely day x

    • Reply Terri Webster Schrandt November 10, 2017 at 13:41

      Thank you, Toni, it always seems like a process, huh? Needless to say, my anxiety level has reduced a little 🙂

  • Reply Donna November 9, 2017 at 09:13

    Hi, Terri – I LOVE your quote “With every challenge, there is an opportunity and a reason to be grateful.” You model this philosophy perfectly. I am super excited about meeting in person tomorrow!

    Thank you, Sue, for featuring Terri in this series. Great choice!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric November 9, 2017 at 15:23

      Thanks Donna! Yes, I’ve known Terri for a while and she has always been so supportive. How lucky that you are both meeting. You need to come to Australia next! xx

    • Reply Terri Webster Schrandt November 10, 2017 at 13:44

      Hi Donna, I am actually sitting next to you as I reply to your comment! Thank you for your all of your support! Sue, we would all love to come to Australia and visit you!!

  • Reply Jo Castro November 9, 2017 at 15:25

    What a lovely honest post. We don’t always feel great about everything all of the time, and with modern ways of communication I think there’s a lot of pressure on us to look and appear a bit sparkly. This post made me think about my life and the things I’m grateful for and the things I’m struggling with but try to hide. I wish Terri happiness and success and little anxiety – oh and I’m so glad that Terri’s job is secure for a further amount of time.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric November 10, 2017 at 08:12

      It was honest wasn’t it Jo but Terri put into words what most of us feel at some time or another. I’m so pleased she secured another three years in her job as that certainly takes a load off her mind. Have a lovely weekend and I’ve loved your pics of you in the red dress. I’m tempted to buy one!

    • Reply Terri Webster Schrandt November 10, 2017 at 13:42

      Hi Jo, thank you for your lovely comment!

  • Reply Michele November 10, 2017 at 00:00

    I used to joke with my education students that our favorite “F” word was flexibility. You have certainly demonstrated flexibility in the past year. Fortunately, life experience has taught us to be flexible when needed. I hope the coming months will provide smoother sailing for you!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric November 10, 2017 at 08:15

      Sometimes I try to be flexible Michele but anxiety takes over so I can understand where Terri was coming from. At least she has now secured her job for another three years which will take a load off her mind. Have a great weekend and thanks for stopping by to comment. x

    • Reply Terri Webster Schrandt November 12, 2017 at 06:49

      Thanks, Michele. I would like to think I am flexible, but with jobs/income, it appears obvious I am not. Things are looking really great for the next three years!

  • Reply Leanne | November 10, 2017 at 17:57

    Wow Terri you’ve certainly had a rollercoaster ride over the last few months – no wonder there’s anxiety flirting with you in the wings! Good on you for constantly finding the good things in amongst the bad stuff and I’m so glad your dog pulled through (and you got that wonderful refund!) Good luck with your new endeavours – you’d make a great personal trainer (or whatever else you set your mind to!)

    • Reply Sue Loncaric November 11, 2017 at 05:44

      Hi Leanne, I think Terri would be a great personal trainer and that is one regret I have that I didn’t take that path. I love Terri’s honesty and it makes me feel better knowing that everyone can feel anxious at times.

    • Reply Terri Webster Schrandt November 12, 2017 at 06:51

      Thanks, Leanne! Since I wrote that post, I discovered personal training is not for me at this time. Teaching will continue for the next three years, but I realize I should always have a Plan B in mind 🙂

  • Reply Wendy | The Art of "Why Not?" November 11, 2017 at 05:34

    You have certainly had some highs and lows the past several months, Terri. There is always something to be grateful for, though, just like you said, and you have certainly done a great job finding those things. I do hope things settle down a bit for you now. And congratulations on reaching 1,000 followers on your blog!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric November 11, 2017 at 05:46

      Isn’t it wonderful for Terri 1,000 followers! Life can be a roller coaster Wendy can’t it? However, remembering to make gratitude a part of our day helps keep us grounded I believe. Thanks so much for stopping by to comment and have a beautiful day xx

    • Reply Terri Webster Schrandt November 12, 2017 at 06:52

      Hi Wendy, thank you for your kind words! I am very grateful daily for everything in my life. Life is really too short not to be!

  • Reply Robbie Cheadle November 13, 2017 at 01:33

    I did know quite a lot about your ups and downs this year, Terri. Sounds like on the whole, things have worked out okay. 2017 seems to have an year of anxiety for a lot of people with the world seeming to have gone completely mad. I hope you enjoy the rest of November and have a pleasant and happy Christmas season.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric November 13, 2017 at 06:32

      Thanks for stopping by to comment Robbie and best wishes to you for the Festive Season and 2018.

  • Reply Suzanne November 13, 2017 at 02:05

    Great post. Love your positive attitude, even when life’s challenges are being hurled at you from every direction.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric November 13, 2017 at 06:32

      Terri is very inspirational, isn’t she Suzanne? Thanks for stopping by to comment. x

  • Reply Janis @ November 13, 2017 at 04:24

    Hi Terri. What a great reminder that we can find (even a little bit of) gratitude in just about every situation. You’ve had a few challenges this year, but how nice that you discovered the good in all of them. Attitude is all about choices.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric November 13, 2017 at 06:33

      Hi Janis! Terri’s post really brought home to me that even when challenges arise we can always find something positive to take away. Thank you for stopping by to leave a comment and have a fabulous week.

  • Reply Shari Pratt November 13, 2017 at 04:24

    Sue, it’s very nice to meet you here at Sizzling Towards 60 as I get to read one of my favorite bloggers and also take a stroll around your lively blog.

    Terri, though I’ve been following you, in awe, for several months now, and admiring your energy and skill in many areas, I had no idea about the difficult issues you face. Your articles are upbeat and positive (I did read the ones about Brodie and understand how scary a time that was for you) but I had no idea you battle anxiety. It’s not the face I saw though I might have been less observant than I should have been. You are determined as you plough forward promoting a healthy lifestyle. It’s one you follow but it’s not an easy road for you. You’ve inspired me with the knowledge that I can conquer my own health issues, nearly all self-imposed, and live a healthier life as well.

    Thank you for a wonderful article where gratitude for the good things is not overwhelmed by despair for what goes wrong.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric November 13, 2017 at 06:29

      Hi Shari and it is lovely to meet you. Terri certainly has had some challenges this year but as always has shown grace and strength. I do hope you will visit again.

  • Reply Molly Stevens November 13, 2017 at 21:38

    I love your attitude of gratitude, Terri. It is tough to see the postive in situations that seem totally negative, but there is usually something to be grateful for and you have demonstrated this so well in your guest post on Sue’s wonderful blog. I was surprised about the anxiety and have to admit, I have experienced a lot of that these past few months, as I’ve undergone some life changes. I wouldn’t admit it for a while, but have done s so and apprecate your honesty about it. Glad your job is intact for now, but as you say, it is good to cultivate a plan B.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric November 16, 2017 at 05:06

      Hi Molly, it is encouraging when others are so honest about how they are feeling isn’t it? I love how all the comments have been so positive about Terri and the way she has handled her not so good period in life. She is an inspiration. x

  • Reply Liesbet November 14, 2017 at 09:01

    Wow, Terri, you’ve had quite the anxious and busy summer! It seems like most things turned out for the best by now, so that is certainly something to be grateful for. Being as positive as you are about it all is not easy! I also know that stress can lead to health issues and not only related to weight. I hope you are having a quieter fall, with enough moments to focus on what is really important to you!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric November 16, 2017 at 05:06

      Hi Liesbet, thanks for stopping by to comment on Terri’s guest post. She has had an anxious time but great to hear that life is now sorting itself out for her. Have a fabulous week and I hope you visit again. x

  • Reply Leslie Clingan November 14, 2017 at 13:27

    Sue and Terri,
    Thank you for this opportunity to get to know Terri better. For that I am grateful! Here’s hoping that the anxiety that has chased you through the summer and early fall are soon behind you. Wishing you both a bright, stress-free holiday season. XO

    • Reply Sue Loncaric November 16, 2017 at 05:10

      Hi Leslie, Terri’s story certainly resonated with everyone and I’m so glad she has had some positive results on the job front. Have a great day and thanks for stopping by xx

  • Reply Hugh Roberts November 17, 2017 at 01:54

    With me already following your blog, Terri, I’ve read the ups and downs you’ve experienced this year, but when it’s all put together in one post, I can’t help but feel that if I were your neighbour then I’d have offered my help.

    When people are separated by distance, it can sometimes make them feel helpless when a friend is in need. Even in cases when those people have never met, the friendships that build up online can be the same as if these people have been longtime friends and who have lived in the same neighbourhood. Your year proves what a strong caring woman you are. You’ve come through it and continue to make those you have contact with to smile. Visiting your blog always makes me smile, even when the stories are sad because your writing shows such determination to get things done. And, you always do. ?

    Thanks for sharing your year (so far) with us.

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