Category Archives: Holidays

what’s your brand?

As this growing thing happens each year I become more aware of who and what is worth my energy. It’s simply figuring out your own personal brand of self. My brand of person rarely has doubt. I prefer people who like and seek for unusual experiences. Whose mannerisms are happy, reflective, and easy going. This would fit the description of any one in my close circle.

You probably don’t really know much about me aside from what I look like in a picture or what I have put on this blog. My name is M’Kenzie. I am tiny. Like pick me up and whirl me around in one arm tiny. But I have a very distinct brand of self that is made up of my humor, the type of people I enjoy being around, and how I spend my time.

I am also Five Take Flight.

It took Derek and me some time and a lot of back and forth to settle on the name. I had a little scrappy notebook that I was penning into for days. I was cataloging things that resonate with me in my life. It was a brief list of family, birds, and traveling. I began to mix all 3 ideas together and as a result I had a lot of bird/nest imagery and travel/adventure words filling up the pages.

For example:

Going Far Always Home

Journey Home

Nest of Travelers

Under my Wing

Far and Free

Feather our Dreams

World of Five


You get the picture I think. From this Five Take Flight was born.

My overall brand in life is my family. My home. My home has everyone it will ever need tucked snuggly in their beds tonight. The tree is still twinkling, fire is dancing, and my cup of tea is steaming. There’s something so fresh about a New Year! This year I am going to stamp my family’s brand of positive attributes out. So that hopefully year by year and discovery by discovery we will have an awareness of who we all really are as people.

A big Happy New Year to my darling.

You’ve made me sparkle brighter than anyone ever could by loving me the way you do. I’m yours. It’s always been effortless with you. I’m sorry if this year I didn’t make it so. I’m sorry if this year we both had to experience some change and find understanding for one another in a whole new light. We’ve always been effortless together. I’m glad we will continue to be.


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taking flight in 2017

The New Year has come leaving last years decisions behind.

At the start of each year we are re-designing our infrastructures. Getting rid of chaos, evaluating tough decisions, being more compassionate, working on our health and beliefs. It’s basically our time once a year to take time to invest in ourselves and to also be forgiving of ourselves.

Our family will take flight in 2017. We are going abroad to live. We will spend and lend ourselves to this family this year. We are planning on leaving late spring to early summer and plan on being gone for a full year. The itinerary isn’t set in stone yet. We have an outline for our jumping off points and where we want to start for optimal weather conditions in each area. We are hoping to get input from people all over the globe on must see places and activities. So, if you have any suggestions please comment! It would be extremely helpful. We are travelers. Together we have been to 23 countries and many more separately. I’m a Sagittarius and we have a lust for travel. There’s nothing better than discovering a place I haven’t seen before.

A favorite author of mine Toni Morison said,

“We die. That may be the meaning of life. But we do language. That may be the measure of our lives.”

I’ve been measuring my life for years and years through several journals. This next adventure we’ve decided to go on will create new words for me to record. I don’t want to become indifferent to life.  The things we have all selfishly torched to the ground in our lives while trying to find happiness; I want to give beauty to the ashes of those experiences.

I have the voice of a poet

The voice of peace

The voice of song (often off key)

The voice of passion

We are taking flight into a New Year

a season for family

I am a snuggler (not a real word I know).

I often feel like one of those plecostomus fish; some people call them sucker mouth fish. Ya know the fish in tanks that adhere to their surrounding surfaces. That’s me when I sleep. Poor Derek. I pretty much chase him around the bed all night, attached at all times. The fact that Derek tolerates my burrowing every night is one of the little things in our relationship that make us compatible. It simply gives me the connection in our relationship that I need to feel bonded to the partnership. It is something distinct to our family. These little gestures or habits that we have make up the core of our homes. We are different shades of humanity with at least one thing in common. We are a part of a family, no matter how broad the definition is. We all belong somewhere.

Christmas in my eyes celebrates the holy family. I’ve found myself thinking on the kinship that Mary may have had with her spouse and children. What little details made up her family life? In modern times the equivalent would be knowing how one likes their coffee, or tea, or prefers to squeeze the toothpaste out of the top of the tube (seriously everyone gets their own tube of toothpaste in my house). It’s the finer points in a family that I am interested in. I think there are universal truths and family is one of them. So I have no problem directing this next thought at you. The most important thing in your life is your family. It is your most precious thing. You can spend years creating them and destroy it all in five minutes. They are something to be guarded and protected.

I’ll fold myself into Derek’s arms on Christmas Eve like I’ve done for the past several years and think this world really is a gorgeous place. Stacked and filled, piled and overlapped, with hearts of the young.









We were puddle jumping in New York for Thanksgiving
Coat held tight against me
The view and lights
Romancing themselves into me.
At one moment during the trip the boys were wrestling with Derek on the grey living room rug. Wren lay close by waving her little hands frantically in the air in the late afternoon light. Right in that moment I felt exploding joy radiate through all of me.

Joyful experiences mean more when we are fully conscious of the alternatives or contrasts around us. We are with out context or a frame of reference for what it means to feel true joy without having also experienced sadness in our lives. Because of this simple concept I find there is a beauty in opposition.

The holidays are here. JOY is printed on mugs of coco and sung in vibrato. In our 12-month trip around the sun, it is when our planet is at its farthest, when the nights are at their longest, that we have decided to invoke joy with such intention.

Regardless of your creed or belief, these holidays are a time for us to reach for the ultimate source of joy in our lives. For us it’s the love of God. We see this love manifest in the birth of a baby. A gift to all, to guide and save. I believe if you can live outside yourself by loving others you will have joy, and a joyful soul is of a divine nature.

As our boys watched the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade pass by them I realized that we sit at the edge of this special time.
Joy to their world.

May you get as much joy out of the season as our boys on Central Park West watching the Pillsbury Doughboy flying overhead.

Macy's day Parade balloons


Family watching Macy's Day Parade
girl with dreads


Macy's Day Parade

babies' first Thanks giving

Central Park view

Family getting on G150