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  • Writer's pictureTeresa Thomas

Finally Saying "No way!" to "All Work and No Play"

By Sandy Thibault, 50 Fun Things Alum

You would think it would be an easy choice between working or having fun, right? Not for me!

I was born and raised in Minnesota, a typical Midwesterner by most standards. I am also of the German and Norwegian ancestry. I’m telling you this because I, like many of us, grew up with a strong work ethic. In my family, work always came before fun. So as you already know, the work is never done, which means the fun times are few and far between. An even bigger stretch was the idea that work and fun could go together and it was not an either or; both could actually happen at the same time! Who knew?

Given this work ethic that was hard wired into my brain, I clearly had something to work on. It was hard to move from making work the only priority to incorporating fun into the things I did. Even though I knew how important it was, I still found it hard to balance fun with work. Just as I had learned growing up, work was still first priority. I knew that is not what I wanted and I would have to find a way to make another choice.

That is when I heard about the 50 Fun Things workshop. A friend of mine was going and although I was still skeptical I thought I would go and give it a try. At the very least, I would share quality time with my friend.

I enjoyed the workshop, brought home the 50 Fun Things Chart and laid it on my desk not quite ready to dive into it. Every now and then I picked it up and thought maybe I could add some fun to my life. I started small, but the more I did, the more I liked it. Before I realized it, searching out things that were new and different had actually became part of my life.

One of the things I searched out was how to paint the beautiful Mandala Stones that I had been seeing on Social Media. It took quite awhile to find a teacher so I could learn how to paint them, but when I did had so much fun that I decided that others might enjoy this too. That is when Painted Mandala Stone Workshops were born. I have loved creating these workshops and people are having such a great time creating their own stones.

I know for a fact, that if I had not taken the 50 Fun Things workshop, I probably would have continued to fit fun in when I could, rather than making an intentional effort to seek out it out. This helped me to change my belief that work is the only important attribute to have and it was easier than I thought to make this a daily intention. Even for someone like me with an embedded work ethic, 50 Fun Things changed how I think about what I do and how I do it.

Sandy Thibault is following her joy in teaching PAINTING MANDALA STONES workshops.

This is simple and easy, plus it requires no artistic skill or experiences. Painting these beautiful stones taps into your creative side and it is fun and relaxing. This is open to adults and children 10 and older. Each class includes: instruction, demonstration, handouts, time to practice and then paint 2-3 stones during the two hour class. See examples and notifications on the next workshops here: or contact Sandy directly.

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