Wordless Wednesday

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Fanning the Flames of My Dreams

Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world.

–Harriet Tubman

It’s easy to doubt ourselves. There are days that I not only doubt that I have the strength to follow and reach my dreams, sometimes I doubt that my dreams are worthy. The dreams I have aren’t dreams that I think will save the world. So, does that mean I should ditch them, in favor of more altruistic pursuits?

Not at all.

Just because the current dreams we’re chasing aren’t about opening a homeless shelter, or an animal shelter, or helping those in destitute straights, doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t reach for them. Because even if our dream feels like a goal with a selfish intent – a weekend in Cabo, a new car, a trip to see the Aurora Borealis – in reaching for something we desire, we nurture our soul and fan the flames of contentment in our lives. And when we nourish this inner part of ourselves, we then have the confidence and fortitude to reach out to others and encourage their ambitions also.

Affirmation: I have the strength, patience, and passion to achieve my dreams.

(Excerpt from Spoonful of Sugar, scheduled for release October 2016)

Spoonful of Sugar

Silent Sunday

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International Quality of Life Month

something fabulousHooray! January is a month long celebration for International Quality of Life Month.

Sounds great. We all desire a quality life. Somehow a ‘quality life’ seems to always be a life just a little bit better than the life we are living. The quality life you envision for yourself may be one with more money, a better job, a nicer house, a newer car, more free time, more vacations, less free time …

Everyone’s idea of what components make up a quality life will differ. Most probably, each person will have a different definition of what their quality life is on different days, or during different phases of life.

Someone may be thinking a quality life is one with more money than what they currently have. Life will be better with fewer bills, more disposable income, or more financial security. Then a child or spouse becomes ill, or hospitalized, or worse. Suddenly, money doesn’t seem all that important. The life and health of your child or spouse becomes top priority.

Our defining characteristics of a quality life will change, sometimes day to day, sometimes year to year. But for today, for this moment in time, treat yourself to finding twenty or thirty minutes for yourself this week. Find a small slice of time where you can sit and contemplate your life, what is in your life, what isn’t in your life and what is important to you.

Make a list. Make a list of the blessings in your life that you want to keep. What would you like to bring into your life? What can go? What’s a low priority and what’s a high priority? Not according to what the world, your community, your business or your family thinks your life should be like. What is important to YOU for a quality life?

Jot some notes down. What steps can you take to move towards the quality of life you desire? You don’t have to have a massive overhaul of your life. Baby steps, that’s all you need. Take small little consistent steps that you can take one day at a time. A half hour here, an hour there. A phone call here, a date night there, a play date with your child, an hour writing the book you wish to write, an answer of ‘no’ to something you don’t wish to spend the time or energy on. They all add up these baby steps, by minutes and actions at a time. Before you know it, you’ll have the quality of life you desire, one created to your own desires that is YOU.

Celebrate life; celebrate Quality of Life Month!

International Creativity Month

creativity2January celebrates our creativity. How can we honor and celebrate our own creativity? One way is to look at things differently. Often, we get in our own little ruts and move through life without looking closely. Look around. What can we do different? What mind sets could use a little tweak?

Creativity is more than creating art. It’s finding new solutions for our problems. It’s taking new initiatives in our relationships. It’s creating a better life for ourselves and our families.

And yes, often times it does involve art, or crafting, or “playing”.

This month, try to add some creativity to your life. Take ten or fifteen minutes each day and give yourself the gift of creating. Grab some crayons and color up your world. Grab a pencil and doodle. “Borrow” the children’s clay and make your own creation. Look for new solutions, open your mind to new possibilities.

Celebrate life, celebrate your creativity!

Buttons and Bridges and Nano … oh my!

I’m still celebrating life … every day! However, to allow more time for personal celebration, I will only be posting a weekly celebration blog, instead of the daily celebrations. Writing, and writing about celebrating life, is important to me. To keep my writing a priority, I’m scaling back some of my other activities, such as the daily posts. I’m continuing with my blogs, my Facebook pages, and expanding into weekly columns.

I avidly believe in celebrating every aspect of life we can. But, the truth still applies that there are only 24 hours, or 1,440 minutes, available each day. I’m sure many, if not all of you, have the same time crunch that impacts our decisions, our choices and our life.

November celebrates a month of writing; a month of intense writing. It’s NANO time! Or, National Novel Writing Month. Write a book in a month. The goal is to write 50,000 words during November. Take December off to celebrate the holidays and family. Then after the New Year, tackle the edits & polish it up. I’m working on Prissy & Paige, a little behind, but will be catching up this weekend. (Go DFW Rhinos, Go!) http://www.nanowrimo.org/

Button, button, who has the button? November 16th is National Button Day. Buttons are fascinating, collecting buttons is fun. Celebrate the day by taking a look at some of these unusual button fun facts. http://www.buttoncountry.com/fun_facts.htm

And, historic bridges; I love historic bridges and I’m not alone. Historic Bridges.org sponsors Historic Bridge Awareness Month. Their site states, “Historic Bridge Awareness Month is an opportunity to remind yourself that historic bridges are disappearing because the vast majority are not preserved and are being demolished and replaced at an alarming rate.” Check out their site at: http://www.historicbridges.org/index.htm

Celebrate today, celebrate your life, and celebrate all the goodness and blessings in your life!

Choosing to Celebrate Life

A Reason to Celebrate …. Who needs a reason? As Robert Brault stated, “There are exactly as many special occasions in life as we choose to celebrate.”

The opportunities to celebrate life surround us with their infinite possibilities. We simply don’t always see them clearly. Life happens; and, when life happens, life gets busy. We become blinded by the tasks, chores, and errands that infiltrate our daily lives. Laundry, cooking, dishes, yard work, birthday presents, lost dogs, kids to practice, dance, games, not to mention working to keep the family fed and sheltered.

We wait for preordained occasions to celebrate; birthdays, anniversaries, Thanksgiving or Christmas. What about celebrating the thousands of special occasions that don’t come printed on our calendars?

For starters, we woke up this morning, we’re alive. Yes, the day may be packed from morning to night, there may be conflicts, arguments, tough meetings and not enough time to complete what we need to do. But, as a friend reminded me last night, it does beat the alternative, doesn’t it?

Is the day beautiful and sunny, filled with glorious blue skies and fluffy white clouds? Is there rain when the state needs it? Do you have the absolute best spouse, children, grandchildren or family in the world? (No, sorry, I have those!) Did a gorgeous blooming flower greet you when you walked outside? Are your cupboards full? Do you have more clothes in your closet than you can possibly wear through the rest of your lifetime?

I challenge you to take five minutes, sit down and make a quick list. What are you grateful for? What can you see from where you’re sitting that is a blessing? Add to your list through the day, or the week. Let’s celebrate the bounty in our lives. What do you choose to celebrate today? There are countless reasons to celebrate, if we examine our lives in closer detail. Celebrate life today!

BANANA PUDDING LOVERS MONTH

Thursday, November 1st: This month is for you, Sue! November is BANANA PUDDING LOVERS MONTH. Or, ‘Naner Puddin’ for those with ties to the south.

Sponsored by Rodgers Banana Pudding, they say: “What sweet memories we share of family sitting down together eating their banana pudding dessert. Banana Pudding Lovers Month is a time for families to re-create the memories of their happy childhood, or start creating memories for your own children! Let’s pass the tradition from one generation to another.”

For a yummy banana pudding in a a 9 x 13 pan, check out this recipe from allrecipes.com: http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Banana-Pudding-IV/.

Happy ‘Naner Puddin’ Day!

BOOKS FOR TREATS DAY 2012

Wednesday, October 31st: Books? You can’t eat a book! Today is BOOKS FOR TREATS DAY. Sponsored by Books for Treats (www.booksfortreats.org), this non-profit encourages distributing gently read children’s books instead of candy for Halloween.

Books for Treats web site states, “Why give children books instead of candy at Halloween?

Books feed children’s minds, while candy only feeds their cavities. Books encourage children to read, and parents to read with them and/or ask them about their books. Many children rarely receive books as gifts, so even gently read books are special treats.

The National Endowment for the Arts recently released a report revealing that the average 15- to 24-year-old spends seven minutes daily on “voluntary” reading. If we kindle children’s excitement about reading before they are teenagers, they will continue the habit into adulthood.

Why would I want to go to the trouble of giving books? Candy is much easier to buy.

Trick-or-treaters pick their book

Do you recycle? If so, do you think it is a lot of work? No. You believe in supporting the planet by recycling materials so they don’t go into the landfill. Books For Treats takes a little more time than buying a giant bag of candy, but if you believe that you can help turn Halloween from a cavity-, obesity-, diabetes-contributing holiday into one that shows that society cares about our children, then it’s worth the extra effort.

Giving books instead of candy shows kids you care about them and are encouraging them to read. This not only helps raise their interest in reading, but raises their feeling that the community cares about their future. Literacy is key to success in today’s society. Book reading encourages curiosity, imagination and life-long learning.”

CHECKLIST DAY

Tuesday, October 30th: Lists, lists and more lists; where would our lives be without them? Today is CHECKLIST DAY. What a strange day to celebrate, although I think I’m the queen of lists. My whole planner is filled with lists, so a day celebrating checklists caught my attention.

According to www.checklist.com, “On October 30, 1935, a Model 299 prototype for the Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress crashed during takeoff at Wright Field in Dayton, Ohio. The cause of the crash was identified as a gust lock that was still engaged.

After the mishap, a group of pilots looked for a way to prevent future ‘pilot error’ mishaps. They came up with checklists for takeoff, flight, before landing and after landing. Boeing delivered 12 of the aircraft to the Air Corps and they flew 1.8 million miles without a serious mishap.”

I feel certain people were making lists before that, because even Santa has a list and is checking it twice. I’m not in charge of any aircraft, but I’ll keep making my lists to keep my life in order. And, I’ll celebrate any chance I get, so … Happy Checklist Day!

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