Saturday, December 17, 2011

Secret Santa Surprise


"When we recall Christmas past, we usually find that the simplest things - not the great occasions - give off the greatest glow of happiness."
~Bob Hope


In the late 1980’s I was working in our local grocery store/trading post at Christmas. My father was the manager of the store and my mother worked there as well. Each year at Christmas, the store distributers held giveaways. I am sure you have seen them at the end of the aisles and perhaps put your name in at a chance to win. The gifts were always very nice. For each of the gifts given away, my father, the manager would also receive that gift. Over the years we had been blessed with Mountain Bikes, Telephones, Radios, Coolers etc. This one particular year I received the best gift that I could imagine, starting a legacy I continue to this day.

We had a regular customer at the grocery store who was one of the sweetest women I had ever met. She had three young children to take care of and…she was also crippled. She was the type of person that always had a smile in her heart and a sweet disposition. I never heard her complain…ever.

Three days before Christmas she arrived at the grocery store to do her Christmas grocery shopping. The “Secret Santa” team was ready. One person kept an eye on her shopping and the rest of us went to work. While she was pushing her cart around, the “team” was sneaking through the back door out to her small station wagon. We had a duplicate of every giveaway. We ran as fast as we could and opened her car door and literally filled her car with gifts! There was a HUGE Christmas Stocking full of toys, a large stuffed Polar Bear, a Toy Truck, Electric Train, Radio, wrapping paper and many more gifts. The entire time we were smiling and laughing. We never got to see the look on her face or hear her response when she opened the car door. The gift we received was in the giving.

Do I remember what I got for Christmas that year? Absolutely not. But…I will forever remember that feeling of helping someone else out. What is ironic about the situation is that my family was struggling as well. The beauty of it is that we didn’t even recognize that fact. We were so excited to be helping someone else out!

Each Christmas Season Secret Santa still makes an appearance. Some years “Santa” has less to give but always is able to see someone less fortunate and make a difference. You see, Christmas is about love. It could be something very small, a thoughtful card, a lottery ticket or helping someone with their groceries. It has nothing to do with accolades or thanks. The best part of being a “Secret Santa” to me is the feeling I get in my heart.

~Heidi Martin St. Jean

Thank you to my parents, Bill & Emily Martin for showing me what Christmas is really about.

“What if Christmas, he thought,
doesn’t come from a store.
What if Christmas, perhaps, means a
little bit more.
~Dr. Seuss

Saturday, December 3, 2011

THE CHRISTMAS GIFT



It isn't the flowing ribbons,
draped and curled with extra care,
or the fine and fancy bows
tied with ornamental flair.

It isn't the label on the box,
the sum of money spent,
or anything that shows the length
to which you obviously went.

The beauty of a Christmas gift
cannot be seen at all.
For the loveliness of giving
is a feeling, grand and tall.

It's the genuine offer of love,
the yearning to make a connection,
a show of honest gratitude,
a display of sincere affection.

~Author Unknown

Thursday, December 1, 2011

THE GIVING TREES


"Christmas is not as much about opening our presents as opening our hearts." ~Janice Maeditere


I was a single parent of four small children, working at a minimum-wage job. Money was always tight, but we had a roof over our heads, food on the table, clothes on our backs and, if not a lot, always enough. My kids told me that in those days they didn't know we were poor. They just thought Mom was cheap. I've always been glad about that.

It was Christmas time, and although there wasn't money for a lot of gifts, we planned to celebrate with church and family, parties and friends, drives downtown to see the Christmas lights, special dinners, and by decorating our home.

But the big excitement for the kids was the fun of Christmas shopping at the mall. They talked and planned for weeks ahead of time, asking each other and their grandparents what they wanted for Christmas. I dreaded it. I had saved $120 for presents to be shared by all five of us.

The big day arrived and we started out early. I gave each of the four kids a twenty dollar bill and reminded them to look for gifts about four dollars each. Then everyone scattered. We had two hours to shop; then we would meet back at the "Santa's workshop" display.

Back in the car driving home, everyone was in high Christmas spirits, laughing and teasing each other with hints and clues about what they had bought. My younger daughter, Ginger, who was about eight years old, was unusually quiet. I noted she had only one small, flat bag with her after her shopping spree. I could see enough through the plastic bag to tell that she had bought candy bars - fifty-cent candy bars! I was so angry. What did you do with that twenty dollar bill I gave you? I wanted to yell at her, but I didn't say anything until we got home. I called her into my bedroom and closed the door, ready to be angry again when I asked her what she had done with the money. This is what she told me:

"I was looking around, thinking of what to buy, and I stopped to read the little cards on one of the Salvation Army's 'Giving Trees.' One of the cards was for a little girl four years old, and all she wanted for Christmas was a doll with clothes and a hairbrush. So I took the card off the tree and bought the doll and the hairbrush for her and took it to the Salvation Army booth.

"I only had enough money left to buy candy bars for us," Ginger continued. "But we have so much and she doesn't have anything."

I never felt so rich as I did that day.

By Kathleen Dixon

Thursday, November 17, 2011

DARE TO BELIEVE


EVERYBODY KNOWS ...
You can't be all things to all people.
You can't do all things at once.
You can't do all things equally well.
You can't do all things better than everyone else.
Your humanity is showing just like everyone else's.

SO ...
You have to find out who you are, and be that.
You have to decide what comes first, and do that.
You have to discover your strengths, and use them.
You have to learn not to compete with others,
Because no one else is in the contest of "being you."

THEN ...
You will have learned to accept your own uniqueness.
You will have learned to set priorities and make decisions.
You will have learned to live with your limitations.
You will have learned to give yourself the respect that is due,
And you'll be a most vital mortal.

DARE TO BELIEVE ...
That you are a wonderful, unique person.
That you are a once-in-all-history event.
That it's more than a right, it's your duty, to be who you are.
That life is not a problem to solve, but a gift to cherish.
And you'll be able to stay one up on what used to get you down.

~Author Unknown

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

HAPPINESS COMES FROM GIVING


"Happiness comes from spiritual wealth, not material wealth... Happiness comes from giving, not getting. If we try hard to bring happiness to others, we cannot stop it from coming to us also. To get joy, we must give it, and to keep joy, we must scatter it."
~John Templeton

This story is about a beautiful, expensively dressed lady who complained to her psychiatrist that she felt that her whole life was empty; it had no meaning.

So the counsellor called over the old lady who cleaned the office floors, and then said to the rich lady, "I'm going to ask Mary here to tell you how she found happiness. All I want you to do is listen."

So the old lady put down her broom and sat on a chair and told her story: "Well, my husband died of malaria and three months later my only son was killed by a car. I had nobody... I had nothing left. I could'nt sleep; I couldn't eat; I never smiled at anyone, I even thought of taking my own life. Then one evening a little kitten followed me home from work. Somehow I felt sorry for that kitten. It was cold outside, so I decided to let the kitten in. I got it some milk, and it licked the plate clean. Then it purred and rubbed against my leg, and for the first time in months, I smiled. Then I stopped to think; if helping a little kitten could make me smile, maybe doing something for people could make me happy. So the next day I baked some biscuits and took them to a neighbour who was sick in bed. Every day I tried to do something nice for someone. It made me so happy to see them happy. Today, I don't know of anybody who sleeps and eats better than I do. I've found happiness, by giving it to others."

When she heard that, the rich lady cried. She had everything that money could buy, but she had lost the things which money cannot buy.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

DO NOT


Do not undermine your worth by comparing yourself with others.
It is because we are different that each of us is special.

Do not set your goals by what other people deem important.
Only you know what is best for you..

Do not let your life slip through your fingers by living in the past nor for the future.
By living your life one day at a time, you live all the days of your life.

Do not give up when you still have something to give.
Nothing is really over until the moment you stop trying.
It is a fragile thread that binds us to each other....

Do not be afraid to encounter risks.
It is by taking chances that we learn how to be brave.

Do not shut love out of your life by saying it is impossible to find.
The quickest way to receive love is to give love; the fastest way to lose love is to hold it too tightly.

Do not dismiss your dreams.
To be without dreams is to be without hope; to be without hope is to be without purpose.

Do not run through life so fast that you forget not only where you have been, but also where you are going.
Life is not a race, but a journey to be savored each step of the way.

~Author Unknown

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AND ITS EFFECTS

"This is not love. It is a crime, ... You can't look the other way just because you have not experienced domestic violence with your own flesh."
~Salma Hayek



www.thehotline.org/

Friday, October 21, 2011

HEARTPRINTS


Whatever our hands touch -
We leave fingerprints!
On walls, on furniture
On doorknobs, dishes, books.
There's no escape.
As we touch we leave our identity.
Wherever I go today
Help me leave heartprints!
Heartprints of compassion
Of understanding and love.

Heartprints of kindness
And genuine concern.
May my heart touch a lonely neighbor
Or a runaway daughter
Or an anxious mother
Or perhaps an aged grandfather.

Send me out today
To leave heartprints.
And if someone should say,
"I felt your touch,"
May they also sense the love
that is deep within my heart.

~Author Unknown

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

THE WISE WOMAN'S STONE


A wise woman who was traveling in the mountains found a precious stone in a stream. The next day she met another traveler who was hungry, and the wise woman opened her bag to share her food. The hungry traveler saw the precious stone and asked the woman to give it to him. She did so without hesitation. The traveler left, rejoicing in his good fortune. He knew the stone was worth enough to give him security for a lifetime. But a few days later he came back to return the stone to the wise woman.
"I've been thinking," he said, "I know how valuable the stone is, but I give it back in the hope that you can give me something even more precious. Give me what you have within you that enabled you to give me the stone."

~Author Unknown

Thursday, October 13, 2011

RELIVE THOSE BEAUTIFUL MOMENTS


Life is full of twists and turns. We encounter many unexpected events in our life; some of them cheerful and some of them devastating.

Some of the events are so pleasant that we cherish them for rest of our lives. They are like those beautiful flowers which we like to put in our book while turning its pages. They are like those beautiful dreams which we see with open eyes. They are like the view of a rainbow in the rainy season. They become our dearest treasure. So if we possess such a wonderful asset why not make use of it?

Why not relive those beautiful moments and let their lovely fragrance fill our dull moments? It can prove to be an amazing therapy to rejuvenate the inert period of life.

Just soak yourself, once again, in those warm memories that still make your heart skip a beat. Sit back and rest your head and play on those sequences of events which give your life a glittering touch. Visualize those pretty scenes in front of your eyes and slowly enter there to live it once again. And don't mistake it for being nostalgic. Rather take it as a way out for busting your stress out.

When your mind is over-worked and you need a little time off from all the surroundings, just step in that retro journey. Maybe it was your college time when you and your friends used to chill life so carelessly or the time when that feeling of love first stepped in your life and how you romanced life with your beloved. Perhaps it was a success on the professional frontier or it could be your marriage, or the birth of your first baby, or a reunion with an old friend. And when you think of those moments, knowing you have been part of such a wonderful and pleasant occurrence, suddenly you will feel a flow of energy in your veins.

When something terrible happens in life, it teaches us some tough lesson, making us stronger and wiser. But when something blissful happens in our life, it tells how life is full of joys, how blessed we are to be given a chance to live it. Those moments become our strength in droning times.

So take lively and colorful leaves of your own life, when passing through autumn's period of mood.

~Copyright © 2008 Nisha Grace

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

THE WINDOW


A young couple moves into a new neighborhood. The next morning, while they are eating breakfast, the young wife sees her neighbor hang the wash outside.

"That laundry is not very clean," she said to her husband. "The neighbor doesn't know how to wash correctly. Perhaps she needs better laundry soap."

Her husband looked on, but remained silent.

Every time her neighbor hung her wash to dry, the young woman would make the same comments.

About one month later, the young woman was surprised to see a nice clean wash on her neighbor's line and said to her husband, "Look! She has learned how to wash correctly. I wonder who taught her this?"

The husband said, "I got up early this morning and cleaned our windows!"

Can you see how it might be a good idea to check first, to see if your windows are clean? What we see when watching others depends on the purity of the windows through which we look.

Before we give any criticism, it might be a good idea to check our state of mind and ask ourselves if we are ready to see the good rather than just look for something wrong in the people we encounter.

~Author Unknown

Saturday, October 8, 2011

THE SPLASHES OF LIFE


My grandfather took me to the fishpond on the farm when I was about seven and he told me to throw a stone into the water.

He told me to watch the waves created by the stone, and then he asked me to think of myself as that stone.

"You may create a lot of splashes in your life, but remember the waves that come from those splashes will affect the peace of all your fellow creatures," he said.

"Remember that you are responsible for what you throw into your circle, and that your waves will touch many other circles. Always try to live in a way that the waves that come from your circle send out the peace of your goodness to other circles."

"Remember the waves that come from anger and jealousy will also send those feelings to other circles. You are responsible for all the waves."

That was the first time I realized each person creates the inner peace or discord that flows out into the world.

We cannot create world peace if we are riddled with inner conflict, hatred, doubt and anger. We radiate the feelings and thoughts that we hold inside whether we voice them or not. Whatever is sloshing around inside of us is spilling out into the world, creating beauty or discord with all the other circles of life.

Remember the eternal wisdom: WHATEVER YOU FOCUS ON EXPANDS...

~Author Unknown

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

FRAGMENTED PIECES


“Broken pieces, when brought together at the right time and place, can create something beautiful. Just like the heart when broken, will mend and become a vision you could only imagine.” ~Heidi Martin St. Jean

There is something so empowering when taking an entire “perfect” piece of ceramic tile and smashing it to pieces. It is a feeling of release. Looking down all you see are fragmented pieces of something that was once whole. Similar to ourselves, we are beautiful when whole, but when we are broken, pieces of ourselves are scattered everywhere. What we must learn is to trust and that bit by bit we can put those pieces back together again. Like the ceramic tile, the picture will not be the same. It is impossible to put all of those pieces back together again and create that same unflawed tile. What we do with those broken pieces is truly the miracle. They are still a part of ourselves, yet what we have learned is to take those pieces, rearrange them, and create something fresh and new.

From the moment I broke my first piece of tile I felt a rush. I could not wait to put the pieces back together and design something entirely new. Thoughts and images were running through my head on what to create next. At the time I just thought I had gotten my inner creativity flowing…it was much more than that. Looking back I can see that I was taking the broken pieces of ME and I was slowly creating a new self. Healing bits and pieces of myself along the way.

Do not be discouraged by the broken pieces of yourself. They will find their way back together again in a new form. Just wait until you see the thing of beauty you have created!

~Heidi Martin St. Jean

Monday, October 3, 2011

A MESSAGE ABOUT STRESS

A young lady confidently walked around the room while leading and explaining stress management to an audience; with a raised glass of water, and everyone knew she was going to ask the ultimate question, 'half empty or half full?'..... she fooled them all... "How heavy is this glass of water?", she inquired with a smile. Answers called out ranged from 8 oz. to 20 oz. She replied, "The absolute weight doesn't matter. It depends on how long I hold it. If I hold it for a minute, that's not a problem. If I hold it for an hour, I'll have an ache in my right arm. If I hold it for a day, you'll have to call an ambulance. In each case it's the same weight, but the longer I hold it, the heavier it becomes." She continued, "and that's the way it is with stress. If we carry our burdens all the time, sooner or later, as the burden becomes increasingly heavy, we won't be able to carry on." "As with the glass of water, you have to put it down for a while and rest before holding it again. When we're refreshed, we can carry on with the burden - holding stress longer and better each time practiced.
So, as early in the evening as you can, put all your burdens down. Don't carry them through the evening and into the night... pick them up tomorrow.
Whatever burdens you're carrying now, let them down for a moment. Relax, pick them up later after you've rested. Life is short. Enjoy it and the now 'supposed' stress that you've conquered!" 1 * Accept the fact that some days you're the pigeon, and some days you're the statue! 2 * Always keep your words soft and sweet, just in case you have to eat them. 3 * Always read stuff that will make you look good if you die in the middle of it. 4 * Drive carefully... It's not only cars that can be recalled by their Maker. 5 * If you can't be kind, at least have the decency to be vague 6 * If you lend someone $20 and never see that person again, it was probably worth it. 7 * It may be that your sole purpose in life is simply to serve as a warning to others. 8 * Never buy a car you can't push. 9 * Never put both feet in your mouth at the same time, because then you won't have a leg to stand on. 10 * Nobody cares if you can't dance well. Just get up and dance. 11 * Since it's the early worm that gets eaten by the bird, sleep late. 12 * The second mouse gets the cheese. 13 * When everything's coming your way, you're in the wrong lane. 14 * Birthdays are good for you. The more you have, the longer you live. 15 * You may be only one person in the world, but you may also be the world to one person. 16 * Some mistakes are too much fun to make only once. 17 * We could learn a lot from crayons. Some are sharp, some are pretty and some are dull. Some have weird names and all are different colors, but they all have to live in the same box. 18 * A truly happy person is one who can enjoy the scenery on a detour. 19 * Have an awesome day and know that someone thought about you today. 20 * It was me, your friend! *Save the earth.... It's the only planet with chocolate!*

Friday, September 30, 2011

THE AWESOME WOMEN HUB

YOU WILL DO AMAZING THINGS!

Awesome Women are changing the world through Authentic CONNECTION!

"For women, how we do what we do, and who we do it with, is just as important as what comes of our efforts. We intuitively know this and we yearn to live by it. Today there are emerging and effective ways for us to live this out. We are dreaming them together." ~Robin Rice, Founder



http://www.AwesomeWomenHub.com/

Thursday, September 29, 2011

DISCOVER THE SAND DOLLAR'S SURPRISE


“I am free to be authentically me.”

When we shake an intact sand dollar, we can hear a little rattle and know that some surprise remains hidden inside. Breaking open the shell reveals five delicate objects resembling doves or angels. If Mother Nature unfailingly endows the simple sand dollar with angels, can we not trust that she does the same with us?

Although the sand dollar is pretty when whole, it’s even more miraculous when broken and able to share its surprise. That’s a lot like us, although we may look good and function well, it often takes breaking free of old patterns for us to really uncover the marvels within us.

To facilitate the process of discovering our hidden treasures, we need to examine the areas around which we have built protective shells and uncover the fears that prompted our need for shielding. For instance, out of a fear of rejection, I used to hide my opinions if they disagreed with others’. Another woman I know camouflages her sensitivity and vulnerability with a smoke screen of caustic humor.

To help you break free, make a list of ways in which you protect yourself. What shells do you hide in? Following that, write a separate list of the fears that originally made you feel the need for protection. Choose one fear to concentrate on now, and gently close your eyes. Allow a picture of the woman or girl within, who holds that fear, to come into your mind’s eye. As much as you can, accept and befriend her. If that’s difficult, just be with her, asking that your acceptance of her grow each day. Over time, repeat this meditation with the other fears that have confined you, for by accepting the wounded parts of ourselves, we begin to melt their defenses.

We are all laden with gifts and talents yearning to be released in order for their blessings to fly free.

“I know that I have many gifts and talents to share.”


~Courtesy of The Woman’s Book of Confidence

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

THE "SECOND" TEN COMMANDMENTS


Thou shall not worry, for worry is the most unproductive of all human activities.

Thou shall not be fearful, for most of the things we fear never come to pass.

Thou shall not cross bridges before you come to them, for no one yet has succeeded in accomplishing this.

Thou shall face each problem as it comes--you can only handle one at a time anyway.

Thou shall not take problems to bed with you, for they make very poor bedfellows.

Thou shall not borrow other people's problems. They can better care for them than you can.

Thou shall not try to relive yesterday for good or ill, it is forever gone. Concentrate on what is happening in your life and be happy now!

Thou shall be a good listener, for only when you listen do you hear different ideas from your own. It is hard to learn something new when you are talking, and some people do know more than you do.

Thou shall not become "bogged down" by frustration, for 90 percent of it is rooted in self-pity and will only interfere with positive action.

Thou shall count thy blessings, never overlooking the small ones, for a lot of small blessings add up to a big one.

~Author Unknown

Saturday, September 24, 2011

ACCENTUATING THE FUNCTIONAL


It is wonderful that we no longer deny the dysfunction of our families of origin or even the families we created, but there is a danger now that we may dwell on the dysfunction and deny any nurturing we received. Almost all of us have moments in our past when we felt loved and supported. Remembering those good times underscores and bolsters our belief in our own lovability.

Allowing ourselves to recall pleasant memories facilitates our healing and fosters forgiveness of both our parents and ourselves as parents. None of us had – or were – perfect parents, but there are probably at least slivers of healthy recollections that we can give thanks for.

If we’re suffering stabs of guilt over how we have been parenting our children, it’s especially important that we accentuate our functional behavior in order to build on it. If we persist in emphasizing our dysfunctional actions, we will only discourage ourselves and make healthy change more difficult.

In a quiet alone time, or with a trusted friend, make a list of any times you remember being happy or contented as a child. Replay those minutes or hours. Savor them. Relive the feelings and give thanks for the experiences. Then make a separate list of times you have felt pleased with and proud of your own parenting skills. Share those memories with your mate, children, or a friend. Give yourself credit for a job well done.

Accentuating the functional encourages us to trust ourselves. It gives us a surplus of strength we can draw on for support when we need to look at dysfunction in our life in order to heal it and move on.

~I am thankful for my past – both the challenging and the rewarding parts of it.
~I accentuate the positive in my background without denying the painful.
~I am a caring parent to myself and my children.


*Courtesy of The Woman’s Book of Confidence

Friday, September 23, 2011

INVEST IN YOURSELF


Imagine there is a bank account that credits your account each morning with a $86,400. It carries over no balanace from day to day. Every evening the bank deletes whatever part of the balance you failed to use during the day. What would you do? Draw out ever cent, of course? Each of us has such bank. Its name is time. Every morning, it credit you with 86,400 seconds. Every night it writes off as lost, whatever of this you have failed to invest to a good purpose. It carries over no balance. It allows no over draft. Each day it opens a new account for you. Each night it burns the remains of the day. If you fail to use the day's deposits, the loss is yours. There is no drawing against "tomorrow." You must live in the present on today's deposits. Invest it so as to get from it the utmost in health, happiness and success. The clock is running. Make the most of today.

"Waiting for the fish to bite or waiting for wind to fly a kite. Or waiting around for Friday night or waiting perhaps for their Uncle Jake or a pot to boil or a better break or a string of pearls or a pair of pants or a wig with curls or another chance. Everyone is just waiting." ~Dr. Seuss

Sunday, September 18, 2011

TESTING FOR GOSSIP


"If you reveal your secrets to the wind, you should not blame the wind for revealing them to the trees." ~Kahlil Gibran

In ancient Greece, Socrates was reputed to hold knowledge in high esteem. One day an acquaintance met the great philosopher and said, “Do you know what I just heard about your friend?”

“Hold on a minute,” Socrates replied. “Before telling me anything I’d like you to pass a little test. It’s called the Triple Filter Test.”

“Triple filter?”

“That’s right,” Socrates continued. “Before you talk to me about my friend, it might be a good idea to take a moment and filter what you’re going to say. That’s why I call it the triple filter test. The first filter is Truth. Have you made absolutely sure that what you are about to tell me is true?”

“No,” the man said, “Actually I just heard about it and ...”

“All right,” said Socrates. “So you don’t really know if it’s true or not. Now let’s try the second filter, the filter of Goodness. Is what you are about to tell me about my friend something good?”

“No, on the contrary…”

“So,” Socrates continued, “you want to tell me something bad about him, but you’re not certain it’s true. You may still pass the test though, because there’s one filter left: the filter of Usefulness. Is what you want to tell me about my friend going to be useful to me?”

“No, not really …”

“Well,” concluded Socrates, “if what you want to tell me is neither true nor good nor even useful, why tell it to me at all?”

Friday, September 16, 2011

IT STARTS WITH A SMILE


SMILE!!!!!

She smiled at a sorrowful stranger...
The smile seemed to make him feel better...
He remembered past kindnesses of a friend
And wrote him a thank you letter...
The friend was so pleased with the thank you
That he left a large tip after lunch...
The waitress, surprised by the size of the tip,
Bet the whole thing on a hunch...
The next day she picked up her winnings,
And gave part to a man on the street...
The man on the street was grateful;
For two days he'd had nothing to eat...
After he finished his dinner,
He left for his small dingy room...
He didn't know at that moment
That he might be facing his doom...
On the way he picked up a shivering puppy
And took him home to get warm...
The puppy was very grateful
To be in out of the storm...
That night the house caught on fire...
The puppy barked the alarm...
He barked till he woke the whole household
And saved everybody from harm...
One of the boys that he rescued
Grew up to be President...
All this because of a simple smile
That hadn't cost a cent...

Written by: Barbara Hauck

Thursday, September 15, 2011

IT GETS BETTER

"I will break these chains that bind me,
happiness will find me
leave the past behind me,
today my life begins..."
~Bruno Mars


Tuesday, September 13, 2011

The Good Wife's Guide


(This is an actual article from the Housekeeping Monthly Magazine 13 May 1955)

Ø Have dinner ready. Plan ahead, even the night before, to have a delicious meal ready, on time for his return. This is a way of letting him know that you have been thinking about him and are concerned about his needs. Most men are hungry when they come home and the prospect of a good meal (especially his favorite dish) is part of the warm welcome needed.

Ø Prepare yourself. Take 15 minutes to rest so you’ll be refreshed when he arrives. Touch up your make-up, put a ribbon in your hair and be fresh looking. He has just been with a lot of work-weary people.

Ø Be a little gay and a little more interesting for him. His boring day may need a lift and one of your duties is to provide it.

Ø Clear away the clutter. Make one last trip through the main part of the house just before your husband arrives.

Ø Gather up schoolbooks, toys, paper, etc. and then tables.

Ø Over the cooler months of the year you should prepare and light a fire for him to unwind by. Your husband will feel he has reached a haven of rest and order, and it will give you a lift too. After all, catering for his comfort will provide you with immense personal satisfaction.

Ø Prepare the childrens. Take a few minutes to wash the children’s hands and faces (if they are small), comb their hair and, if necessary, change their clothes. They are little treasures and he would like to see them playing the part. Minimize all noise. At the time of his arrival, eliminate all noise of the washer, dryer, or vacuum. Try to encourage the children to be quiet.

Ø Be happy to see him.

Ø Greet him with a warm smile and show sincerity in your desire to please him.

Ø Listen to him. You may have a dozen important things to tell him, but the moment of his arrival is not the time. Let him talk first-remember his topics of conversation are more important than yours.

Ø Make the evening his. Never complain if he comes home late or goes out to dinner, or other places of entertainment without you. Instead, try to understand his world of strain and pressure and his very real need to be at home and relax.

Ø Your goal: to make sure your home is a place of peace, order, and tranquility where your husband can renew himself.

Ø Don’t greet him with complaints and problems.

Ø Don’t complain if he’s late home for dinner or even if he stays out all night. Count this as a minor compared to what he might have gone through that day.

Ø Make him comfortable. Have him lean back in a chair or have him lie down in the bedroom. Have a cool or warm drink ready for him.

Ø Arrange his pillow and offer to take off his shoes. Speak in low, soothing and pleasant voice.

Ø Don’t ask him questions about his actions or question his judgment or integrity. Remember, he is the master of the house and as such will always exercise his will with fairness and truthfulness. You have no right to question him.

Ø A good wife always knows her place.

Monday, September 12, 2011

WHAT I'VE LEARNED


I've learned - That you cannot make someone love you. All you can do is be someone who can be loved. The rest is up to them.

I've learned - that no matter how much I care, some people just don't care back.

I've learned - that it takes years to build up trust, and only seconds to destroy it.

I've learned - that it's not what you have in your life but who you have in your life that counts.

I've learned - that you can get by on charm for about fifteen minutes. After that, you'd better know something.

I've learned - that it's not what happens to people that's important. It's what they do about it.

I've learned - that you can do something in an instant that will give you heartache for life.

I've learned - that you should always leave loved ones with loving words. It may be the last time you see them.

I've learned - that either you control your attitude or it controls you.

I've learned - that regardless of how hot and steamy a relationship is at first, the passion fades and there had better be something else to take its place.

I've learned - that learning to forgive takes practice.

I've learned - that money is a lousy way of keeping score.

I've learned - that sometimes when I'm angry I have the right to be angry, but that doesn't give me the right to be cruel.

I've learned - that true friendship continues to grow, even over the longest distance. Same goes for true love.

I've learned - that maturity has more to do with what types of experiences you've had and what you've learned from them and less to do with how many years you've lived.

I've learned - that you should never tell a child their dreams are unlikely or outlandish. Few things are more humiliating, and what a tragedy it would be if they believed you.

I've learned - that no matter how good a friend is, they're going to hurt you every once in a while and you must forgive them for that.

I've learned - that it isn't always enough to be forgiven by others.

I've learned - that sometimes you have to learn to forgive yourself.

I've learned - that no matter how bad your heart is broken the world doesn't stop for your grief.

l've learned - that just because two people argue, it doesn't mean they don't love each other and just because they don't argue, it doesn't mean they do.

I've learned - that sometimes you have to put the individual ahead of their actions.

I've learned - that you shouldn't be so eager to find out a secret. It could change your life forever.

I've learned - that no matter how you try to protect your children, they will eventually get hurt and you will hurt in the process.

I've learned - that there are many ways of falling and staying in love.

I've learned - that your life can be changed in a matter of hours by people who don't even know you.

I've learned - that even when you think you have no more to give, when a friend cries out to you, you will find the strength to help.

I've learned - that writing, as well as talking, can ease emotional pains.

I've learned - that credentials on the wall do not make you a decent human being.

I've learned - that the people you care most about in life are taken from you too soon.

~Unknown

Friday, September 9, 2011

THE PRICE OF CHILDREN


This is just too good not to pass on to all. Something absolutely positive for a change. I have repeatedly seen the breakdown of the cost of raising a child, but this is the first time I have seen the rewards listed this way. It's nice, The government recently calculated the cost of raising a child from birth to 18 and came up with $160,140 for a middle income family. Talk about sticker shock! That doesn't even touch college tuition. But $160,140 isn't so bad if you break it down. It translates into:

· $8,896.66 a year,
· $741.3 month, or * $171.08 a week.
· That's a mere $24.24 a day!
· Just over a dollar an hour.

Still, you might think the best financial advice is don't have children if you want to be "rich." Actually, it is just the opposite.

What do you get for your $160,140?

*Naming rights. First, middle, and last!
*Glimpses of God every day.
*Giggles under the covers every night.
*More love than your heart can hold.
*Butterfly kisses and Velcro hugs.
*Endless wonder over rocks, ants, clouds, and warm cookies.
*A hand to hold, usually covered with jelly or chocolate.
*A partner for blowing bubbles, flying kites
*Someone to laugh yourself silly with, no matter what the boss said or how your stocks performed that day.

For $160,140, you never have to grow up. You get to:

*finger-paint,
*carve pumpkins,
*play hide-and-seek,
*catch lightning bugs, and
*never stop believing in Santa Claus. You have an excuse to:
*keep reading the Adventures of Piglet and Pooh,
*watching Saturday morning cartoons,
*going to Disney movies, and
*wishing on stars.

You get to frame rainbows, hearts, and flowers under refrigerator magnets and collect spray painted noodle wreaths for Christmas, hand prints set in clay for Mother's Day, and cards with backward letters for Father's Day.

For $160,140, there is no greater bang for your buck. You get to be a hero just for:

*retrieving a Frisbee off the garage roof,
*taking the training wheels off a bike,
*removing a splinter,
*filling a wading pool,
*coaxing a wad of gum out of bangs, and coaching a baseball team that never wins but always gets treated to ice cream regardless.

You get a front row seat to history to witness the:

· first step,
· first word,
· first bra,
· first date, and
· first time behind the wheel.

You get to be immortal. You get another branch added to your family tree, and if you're lucky, a long list of limbs in your obituary called grandchildren and great grandchildren. You get an education in psychology, nursing, criminal justice, communications, and human sexuality that no college can match.

In the eyes of a child, you rank right up there under God. You have all the power to heal a boo-boo, scare away the monsters under the bed, patch a broken heart, police a slumber party, ground them forever, and love them without limits.

So . . one day they will like you, love without counting the cost. That is quite a deal for the price!!!!!!!

Love & enjoy your children & grandchildren!!!!!!!

ENCOURAGEMENT


Two men, both seriously ill, occupied the same hospital room. One man was allowed to sit up in his bed for an hour each afternoon to help drain the fluid from his lungs. His bed was next to the room's only window.

The other man had to spend all his time flat on his back. The men talked for hours on end. They spoke of their wives and families, their homes, their jobs, their involvement in the military service, where they had been on vacation. And every afternoon when the man in the bed by the window could sit up, he would pass the time by describing to his room-mate all the things he could see outside the window.

The man in the other bed began to live for those one-hour periods where his world would be broadened and enlivened by all the activity and color of the world outside. The window overlooked a park with a lovely lake. Ducks and swans played on the water while children sailed their model boats. Young lovers walked arm in arm amidst flowers of every color of the rainbow. Grand old trees graced the landscape, and a fine view of the city skyline could be seen in the distance.

As the man by the window described all this in exquisite detail, the man on the other side of the room would close his eyes and imagine the picturesque scene. One warm afternoon the man by the window described a parade passing by. Although the other man couldn't hear the band - he could see it in his mind's eye as the gentleman by the window portrayed it with descriptive words.

Then unexpectedly, a sinister thought entered his mind. Why should the other man alone experience all the pleasures of seeing everything while he himself never got to see anything? It didn't seem fair. At first thought the man felt ashamed. But as the days passed and he missed seeing more sights, his envy eroded into resentment and soon turned him sour. He began to brood and he found himself unable to sleep. He should be by that window - that thought, and only that thought now controlled his life.

Late one night as he lay staring at the ceiling, the man by the window began to cough. He was choking on the fluid in his lungs. The other man watched in the dimly lit room as the struggling man by the window groped for the button to call for help. Listening from across the room he never moved, never pushed his own button which would have brought the nurse running in. In less than five minutes the coughing and choking stopped, along with that the sound of breathing. Now there was only silence-deathly silence.

The following morning the day nurse arrived to bring water for their baths. When she found the lifeless body of the man by the window, she was saddened and called the hospital attendants to take it away. As soon as it seemed appropriate, the other man asked if he could be moved next to the window. The nurse was happy to make the switch, and after making sure he was comfortable, she left him alone. Slowly, painfully, he propped himself up on one elbow to take his first look at the world outside. Finally, he would have the joy of seeing it all himself. He strained to slowly turn to look out the window beside the bed. It faced a blank wall.

The man asked the nurse what could have compelled his deceased roommate who had described such wonderful things outside this window. The nurse responded that the man was blind and could not even see the wall. She said, "Perhaps he just wanted to encourage you."

Epilogue. . . . You can interpret the story in any way you like. But one moral stands out: "There is tremendous happiness in making others happy, despite our own situations. Shared grief is half the sorrow, but happiness when shared, is doubled. If you want to feel rich, just count all of the things you have that money can't buy."


Thursday, September 8, 2011

ADVANTAGES OF BEING A WOMAN

WE ALL NEED A LITTLE HUMOR NOW AND THEN...


Advantages Of Being A Woman
Why it's better to be a Woman!

1. We got off the Titanic first.

2. We get to flirt with systems support men who always return our calls, and are nice to us when we blow up our computers.

3. Our boyfriend's clothes make us look elfin & gorgeous. Guys look like complete idiots in ours.

4. We can be groupies. Male groupies are stalkers.

5. We can cry and get off speeding fines.

6. We've never lusted after a cartoon character or the central female figure in a computer game.

7. Taxis stop for us.

8. Men die earlier, so we get to cash in on the life insurance.

9. We don't look like a frog in a blender when dancing.

10. Free drinks, Free dinners, Free movies ... (you get the point).

11. We can hug our friends without wondering if she thinks we're gay.

12. We can hug our friends without wondering if WE'RE gay.

13. New lipstick gives us a whole new lease on life.

14. It's possible to live our whole lives without ever taking a group shower.

15. We don't have to fart to amuse ourselves.

16. If we forget to shave, no one has to know.

17. We can congratulate our team-mate without ever touching her butt.

18. If we have a zit, we know how to conceal it.

19. We never have to reach down every so often to make sure our privates are still there.

20. If we're dumb, some people will find it cute.

21. We don't have to memorize Caddyshack or Fletch to fit in.

22. We have the ability to dress ourselves.

23. We can talk to people of the opposite sex without having to picture them naked.

24. If we marry someone 20 years younger, we're aware that we look like an idiot.

25. Our friends won't think we're weird if we ask whether there's spinach in our teeth.

26. There are times when chocolate really can solve all your problems.

27. We'll never regret piercing our ears.

28. We can fully assess a person just by looking at their shoes.

29. We know which glass was ours by the lipstick mark.

30. We have enough sense to realize that the easiest way to get out of being lost is to ask for directions.

JUDGE BY THE LOOKS


A lady in a faded gingham dress and her husband, dressed in a homespun threadbare suit, stepped off the train in Boston, and walked timidly without an appointment into the president's outer office. The secretary could tell in a moment that such backwoods, country hicks had no business at Harvard and probably didn't even deserve to be in Cambridge. She frowned.

"We want to see the president," the man said softly.

"He'll be busy all day," the secretary snapped.

"We'll wait," the lady replied.

For hours, the secretary ignored them, hoping that the couple would finally become discouraged and go away. They didn't. And the secretary grew frustrated and finally decided to disturb the president, even though it was a chore she always regretted to do. "Maybe if they just see you for a few minutes, they'll leave," she told him. And he sighed in exasperation and nodded. Someone of his importance obviously didn't have the time to spend with them, but he detested gingham dresses and homespun suits cluttering up his outer office. The president, stern-faced with dignity, strutted toward the couple.

The lady told him, "We had a son that attended Harvard for one year. He loved Harvard. He was happy here. But about a year ago, he was accidentally killed. And my husband and I would like to erect a memorial to him, somewhere on campus". The president wasn't touched he was shocked.

"Madam," he said gruffly, "we can't put up a statue for every person who attended Harvard and died. If we did, this place would look like a cemetery."

"Oh, no," the lady explained quickly, "we don't want to erect a statue. We thought we would like to give a building to Harvard.

The president rolled his eyes. He glanced at the gingham dress and
homespun suit, then exclaimed, "A building! Do you have any earthly idea how much a building costs? We have over seven and a half million dollars in the physical plant at Harvard." For a moment the lady was silent.

The president was pleased. He could get rid of them now.

The lady turned to her husband and said quietly, "Is that all it costs to start a University? Why don't we just start our own?" Her husband nodded. The president's face wilted in confusion and bewilderment.

Mr. and Mrs. Leland Stanford walked away, traveling to Palo Alto, California where they established the University that bears their name, a memorial to a son that Harvard no longer cared about!

"If you judge people, you have no time to love them.”
~Mother Teresa

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

REASON, SEASON OR LIFETIME


People come into your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime.
When you figure out which one it is,
you will know what to do for each person.

When someone is in your life for a REASON,
it is usually to meet a need you have expressed.
They have come to assist you through a difficulty;
to provide you with guidance and support;
to aid you physically, emotionally or spiritually.
They may seem like a godsend, and they are.
They are there for the reason you need them to be.

Then, without any wrongdoing on your part or at an inconvenient time,
this person will say or do something to bring the relationship to an end.
Sometimes they die. Sometimes they walk away.
Sometimes they act up and force you to take a stand.
What we must realize is that our need has been met, our desire fulfilled; their work is done.
The prayer you sent up has been answered and now it is time to move on.

Some people come into your life for a SEASON,
because your turn has come to share, grow or learn.
They bring you an experience of peace or make you laugh.
They may teach you something you have never done.
They usually give you an unbelievable amount of joy.
Believe it. It is real. But only for a season.

LIFETIME relationships teach you lifetime lessons;
things you must build upon in order to have a solid emotional foundation.
Your job is to accept the lesson, love the person,
and put what you have learned to use in all other relationships and areas of your life.
It is said that love is blind but friendship is clairvoyant.

~Unknown

Monday, September 5, 2011

EMERGE


Come out of the shadows and come into your own. Leave behind your armor and your shells and your veils and your protection, and emerge fresh and newly born. Today, step from behind your screens and masks. Peel away the layers upon layers of fear and emerge into a world of love and trust.
Emerge in your own time, in your own way, with your chosen guides at your side. See the world through the eyes of the woman you were always destined to be. Like a tiny chick cracking her way out of a darkened egg, emerge. Like a radiant butterfly, like a glorious rose opening from a tightly closed bud, emerge. Out of your past and into the gift that is your present, emerge. When it's time, When you're ready, emerge.
~Rachel Snyer

And the day came when
the risk to remain tight in a bud
was more painful
than the risk it took
to blossom.
~Anais Nin


Monday, August 29, 2011

COURAGE DOES NOT ALWAYS ROAR


By Paula Fox

When life gets you down and the problems you face are certainly more than your share...
When you run out of strength and you want to give up because it's just too much to bear...

I want to remind you, my precious friend, that you have what it takes inside...
extraordinary courage that may not roar but it doesn't cower and hide

It's the quiet voice inside you that says, "Tomorrow I'll try again."
It's the courage to keep on going... to see things through to the end

You are not defined by this moment in time. You are not what has happened to you
It's the way you choose to respond that matters and what you decide to do

Courage is not the absence of fear, but a powerful choice we make...
the choice to move forward with purpose…regardless of what it takes

It's the courage that's found in ordinary women who are hereos in their own way,
exhibiting strength and fortitude in life's challenges every day...

Valiant woman of exceptional courage with enduring power to cope...
taking each problem one day at a time and never giving up hope.

We're encouraged by the faith of others to survive and overcome,
with the courage to say, "I may be down...but the battle is not done!"

For the woman of courage is a winner... regardless of what she loses
She displays amazing beauty and strength with the attitude she chooses

She gives herself the permission she needs...to feel disappointed or sad.
But then she empowers herself with faith...to focus on good things...not bad

Her story is one of gentle strength reminding us all once more...
Steel is sometimes covered in velvet and...courage doesn't always roar


Tuesday, August 16, 2011

A CHANGE OF PLANS


I had not really planned on taking a trip this time of year, and yet I found myself packing rather hurriedly.

This trip was going to be unpleasant and I knew in advance that no real good would come of it.

I'm talking about my annual "Guilt Trip."

I got tickets to fly there on "WISHIHAD" airlines. It was an extremely short flight.

I got my baggage, which I could not check. I chose to carry it myself all the way. It was weighted down with a thousand memories of what might have been.

No one greeted me as I entered the terminal to the Regret City International Airport. I say international because people from all over the world come to this dismal town.

As I checked into the Last Resort Hotel, I noticed that they would be hosting the year's most important event, the Annual Pity Party.

I wasn't going to miss that great social occasion. Many of the towns leading citizens would be there.

First, there would be the Done family, you know, Should Have, Would Have and Could Have.

Then came the I Had family.

You probably know ol' Wish and his clan.

Of course, the Opportunities would be present, Missed and Lost.

The biggest family would be the Yesterday's. There are far too many of them to count, but each one would have a very sad story to share.

Then Shattered Dreams would surely make and appearance.

And It's Their Fault would regale us with stories (excuses) about how things had failed in his life, and each story would be loudly applauded by Don't Blame Me and I Couldn't Help It.

Well, to make a long story short, I went to this depressing party knowing that there would be no real benefit in doing so. And, as usual, I became very depressed.

But as I thought about all of the stories of failures brought back from the past, it occurred to me that all of this trip and subsequent "pity party" could be cancelled by ME!

I started to truly realize that I did not have to be there. I didn't have to be depressed.

One thing kept going through my mind, I can't change yesterday, but I do have the power to make today a wonderful day.

I can be happy, joyous, fulfilled, encouraged, as well as encouraging. Knowing this, I left the City of Regret immediately and left no forwarding address.

Am I sorry for mistakes I've made in the past? YES! But there is no physical way to undo them.

So, if you're planning a trip back to the City of Regret, please cancel all your reservations now. Instead, take a trip to a place called, Starting Again.

I liked it so much that I have now taken up permanent residence there. My neighbors, the I Forgive Myselfs and the New Starts are so very helpful.

By the way, you don't have to carry around heavy baggage, because the load is lifted from your shoulders upon arrival.

God bless you in finding this great town. If you can find it — it's in your own heart — please look me up.

I live on ICANDOIT street.

“I can't change yesterday, but I do have the power to make today a wonderful day.”

~Anonymous




AFFIRMATION


I believe the sun should never set upon an argument
I believe we place our happiness in other people’s hands
I believe that junk food tastes so good because it’s bad for you
I believe your parents did the best job they knew how to do
I believe that beauty magazines promote low esteem
I believe I’m loved when I’m completely by myself alone

I believe in Karma what you give is what you get returned
I believe you can’t appreciate real love until you’ve been burned
I believe that the grass is no more greener on the other side
I believe that you don’t know what you’ve got until you say goodbye

I believe you can’t control or choose your sexuality
I believe that trust is more important than monogamy
I believe your most attractive features are your heart and soul
I believe that family is worth more than money or gold
I believe that the struggle for financial freedom is unfair
I believe the only ones who disagree are millionaires

I believe in Karma what you give is what you get returned
I believe you can’t appreciate real love until you’ve been burned
I believe that the grass is no more greener on the other side
I believe that you don’t know what you’ve got until you say goodbye

I believe forgiveness is the key to your unhappiness
I believe that married bliss negates the need to be undressed
I believe that God does not endorse TV evangelists
I believe in love surviving death into eternity

I believe in Karma what you give is what you get returned
I believe you can’t appreciate real love until you’ve been burned
I believe that the grass is no more greener on the other side
I believe that you don’t know what you’ve got until you say goodbye

BY D Hayes and D Jones
~Savage Garden


Tuesday, August 9, 2011

THE POWERFUL GIFT



The passengers on the bus watched sympathetically as the attractive young woman with the white cane made her way carefully up the steps. She paid the driver and, using her hands to feel the location of the seats, walked down the aisle and found the seat he'd told her was empty. Then she settled in, placed her briefcase on her lap and rested her cane against her leg.

It had been a year since Susan, 34, became blind. Due to a medical misdiagnosis she had been rendered sightless, and she was suddenly thrown into a world of darkness, anger, frustration and self pity. And all she had to cling to was her husband, Mark.

Mark was an Air Force officer and he loved Susan with all his heart. When she first lost her sight, he watched her sink into despair and was determined to help his wife gain the strength and confidence she needed to become independent again.

Finally, Susan felt ready to return to her job, but how would she get there? She used to take the bus, but was now too frightened to get around the city by herself. Mark volunteered to drive her to work each day, even though they worked at opposite ends of the city.

At first, this comforted Susan, and fulfilled Mark's need to protect his sightless wife who was so insecure about performing the slightest task. Soon, however, Mark realized the arrangement wasn't working. Susan is going to have to start taking the bus again, he admitted to himself. But she was still so fragile, so angry - how would she react?

Just as he predicted, Susan was horrified at the idea of taking the bus again. "I'm blind!", she responded bitterly. "How am I supposed to know where I am going? I feel like you're abandoning me."

Mark's heart broke to hear these words, but he knew what had to be done. He
promised Susan that each morning and evening he would ride the bus with her, for as long as it took, until she got the hang of it.

And that is exactly what happened. For two solid weeks, Mark, military uniform and all, accompanied Susan to and from work each day. He taught her how to rely on her other senses, specifically her hearing, to determine where she was and how to adapt her new environment. He helped her befriend the bus drivers who could watch out for her, and save her a seat.

Finally, Susan decided that she was ready to try the trip on her own. Monday morning arrived, and before she left, she threw her arms around Mark, her temporary bus riding companion, her husband, and her best friend. Her eyes filled with tears of gratitude for his loyalty, his patience, and his love. She said good-bye, and for the first time, they went their separate ways.

Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday... Each day on her own went perfectly, and Susan had never felt better. She was doing it! She was going to work all by herself.

On Friday morning, Susan took the bus to work as usual. As she was paying the fare to exit the bus, the driver said, "Boy, I sure do envy you."

Susan wasn't sure if the driver was speaking to her or not. After all, who on earth would ever envy a blind woman who had struggled just to find the courage to live for the past year? Curious, she asked the driver, "Why do you say that you envy me?"

The driver responded, "It must feel good to be taken care of and protected like you are."

Susan had no idea what the driver was talking about, and again asked, "What do you mean?"

The driver answered, "You know, every morning for the past week, a fine looking gentleman in a military uniform has been standing across the corner watching you as you get off the bus. He makes sure you cross the street safely and he watches until you enter your office building. Then he blows you a kiss, gives you a little salute and walks away. You are one lucky lady."

Tears of happiness poured down Susan's cheeks. For although she couldn't physically see him, she had always felt Mark's presence. She was lucky, so lucky, for he had given her a gift more powerful than sight, a gift she didn't need to see to believe - the gift of love that can bring light where there is darkness.

Author Unknown


Monday, August 8, 2011

PEACE OF MIND


Once Buddha was walking from one town to another town with a few of his followers. This was in the initial days. While they were travelling, they happened to pass a lake. They stopped there and Buddha told one of his disciples, “I am thirsty. Do get me some water from that lake there.”

The disciple walked up to the lake. When he reached it, he noticed that some people were washing clothes in the water and, right at that moment, a bullock cart started crossing through the lake. As a result, the water became very muddy, very turbid. The disciple thought, “How can I give this muddy water to Buddha to drink!” So he came back and told Buddha, “The water in there is very muddy. I don’t think it is fit to drink.”

After about half an hour, again Buddha asked the same disciple to go back to the lake and get him some water to drink. The disciple obediently went back to the lake. This time he found that the lake had absolutely clear water in it. The mud had settled down and the water above it looked fit to be had. So he collected some water in a pot and brought it to Buddha.

Buddha looked at the water, and then he looked up at the disciple and said, “See what you did to make the water clean. You let it be ... and the mud settled down on its own – and you got clear water... Your mind is also like that. When it is disturbed, just let it be. Give it a little time. It will settle down on its own. You don’t have to put in any effort to calm it down. It will happen. It is effortless.”

What did Buddha emphasize here? He said, “It is effortless.” Having 'peace of mind' is not a strenuous job; it is an effortless process. When there is peace inside you, that peace permeates to the outside. It spreads around you and in the environment, such that people around start feeling that peace and grace.

Author Unknown

Friday, August 5, 2011

TWO DAYS WE SHOULD NOT WORRY


There are two days in every week about which we should not worry,
two days which should be kept free from fear and apprehension.

One of these days is Yesterday with all its mistakes and cares,
its faults and blunders, its aches and pains.

Yesterday has passed forever beyond our control.
All the money in the world cannot bring back Yesterday.

We cannot undo a single act we performed;
we cannot erase a single word we said.
Yesterday is gone forever.

The other day we should not worry about is Tomorrow
with all its possible adversities, its burdens,
its large promise and its poor performance;
Tomorrow is also beyond our immediate control.

Tomorrow's sun will rise,
either in splendor or behind a mask of clouds, but it will rise.
Until it does, we have no stake in Tomorrow,
for it is yet to be born.

This leaves only one day, Today.
Any person can fight the battle of just one day.
It is when you and I add the burdens of those two awful eternities
Yesterday and Tomorrow that we break down.

It is not the experience of Today that drives a person mad,
it is the remorse or bitterness of something which happened Yesterday and the dread of what Tomorrow may bring.

Let us, therefore, Live but one day at a time.

~AUTHOR UNKNOWN

Thursday, August 4, 2011

THE SEVEN WONDERS OF THE WORLD


Junior high school students in Chicago were studying the Seven Wonders of the World. At the end of the lesson, the students were asked to list what they considered to be the Seven Wonders of the World. Though there was some disagreement, the following received the most votes:

1. Egypt's Great Pyramids
2. The Taj Mahal in India
3. The Grand Canyon in Arizona
4. The Panama Canal
5. The Empire State Building
6. St. Peter's Basilica
7. China's Great Wall

While gathering the votes, the teacher noted that one student, a quiet girl, hadn't turned in her paper yet. So she asked the girl if she was having trouble with her list. The quiet girl replied, "Yes, a little. I couldn't quite make up my mind because there were so many." The teacher said, "Well, tell us what you have, and maybe we can help."

The girl hesitated, then read, "I think the Seven Wonders of the World are:

1. to touch...
2. to taste...
3. to see...
4. to hear... (She hesitated a little, and then added...)
5. to feel...
6. to laugh...
7. and to love.

The room was so quiet, you could have heard a pin drop.

May this story serve as a gentle reminder to all of us that the things we overlook as simple and ordinary are often the most wonderful - and we don't have to travel anywhere special to experience them.

Enjoy your gifts!

By Author Unknown

Monday, August 1, 2011

ARE YOUR POTATOS HEAVY?


A teacher once told each of her students to bring a clear plastic bag and a sack of potatoes to school. For every person they refuse to forgive in their life's experience, they chose a potato, wrote on it the name and date, and put it in the plastic bag. Some of their bags were quite heavy.

They were then told to carry this bag with them everywhere for one week, putting it beside their bed at night, on the car seat when driving, next to their desk at work.

The hassle of lugging this around with them made it clear what a weight they were carrying spiritually, and how they had to pay attention to it all the time to not forget and keep leaving it in embarrassing places. Naturally, the condition of the potatoes deteriorated to a nasty smelly slime. This was a great metaphor for the price we pay for keeping our pain and heavy negativity! Too often we think of forgiveness as a gift to the other person, and it clearly is for ourselves!

~Author Unknown

Monday, July 18, 2011

I WOULD PICK MORE DAISIES


When the late Nadine Stair of Louisville, Kentucky, was 85 years old, she was asked what she would do if she had her life to live over again.

"I'd make more mistakes next time," she said. "I'd relax. I would limber up. I would be sillier than I have been on this trip. I would take fewer things seriously. I would take more chances. I would climb more mountains and swim more rivers. I would eat more ice cream and less beans. I would perhaps have more actual troubles, but I'd have fewer imaginary ones.

"You see, I'm one of those people who live sensibly and sanely hour after hour, day after day. Oh, I've had my moments, and if I had to do it over again, I'd have more of them. In fact, I'd try to have nothing else. Just moments, one after another, instead of living so many years ahead of each day. I've been one of those persons who never goes anywhere without a thermometer, a hot water bottle, and a raincoat. If I had to do it over again, I would travel lighter than I have.

"If I had my life to live over, I would start barefoot earlier in the spring and stay that way later in the fall. I would go to more dances. I would ride more merry-go-rounds and I would pick more daisies."

~Don Herold Adapted

Friday, July 15, 2011

TO WALK THE RED ROAD


Long road winding began in the stars,
spilled onto the mountain tops,
was carried in the snow to the streams,
to the rivers, to the ocean...
The Red Road is a circle of people
standing hand in hand,
people in this world, people between
people in the Spirit world.
star people, animal people, stone people,
river people, tree people...
The Sacred Hoop.

To walk the Red Road
is to know sacrifice, suffering.
It is to understand humility.
It is the abilility to stand naked before God
in all things for your wrong doings,
for your lack of strength,
for your discompassionate way,
for your arrogance - because to walk
the Red Road, you always know
you can do better. And you know,
when you do good things,
it is through the Creator, and you are grateful.

To walk the Red Road
is to know you stand on equal ground
with all living things. It is to know that
because you were born human,
it gives you superiority over nothing.
It is to know that every creation carries a Spirit,
and the river knows more than you do,
the mountains know more than you do,
the stone people know more than you do,
the trees know more than you do,
the wind is wiser than you are,
and animal people carry wisdom.
You can learn from every one of them,
because they have something you don't:

They are void of evil thoughts.

They wish vengence on no one, they seek Justice.

To Walk the Red Road,
you have God given rights,
you have the right to pray,
you have the right to dance,
you have the right to think,
you have the right to protect,
you have the right to know Mother,
you have the right to dream,
you have the right to vision,
you have the right to teach,
you have the right to learn,
you have a right to grieve,
you have a right to happiness,
you have the right to fix the wrongs,
you have the right to truth,
you have a right to the Spirit World.

To Walk the Red Road
is to know your Ancestors,
to call to them for assistance...
It is to know that there is good medicine,
and there is bad medicine...
It is to know that Evil exists,
but is cowardly as it is often in disquise.

It is to know there are evil spirits
who are in constant watch
for a way to gain strength for themselves
at the expense of you.

To Walk the Red Road,
you have less fear of being wrong,
because you know that life is a journey,
a continuous circle, a sacred hoop.
Mistakes will be made,
and mistakes can be corrected -
if you will be humble,
for if you cannot be humble,
you will never know
when you have made a mistake.

If you walk the Red Road,
you know that every sorrow
leads to a better understanding,
every horror cannot be explained,
but can offer growth.

To Walk the Red Road
is to look for beauty in all things.

To Walk the Red Road
is to know you will one day
cross to the Spirit World,
and you will not be afraid...

"Traci Blood..Poet"

When you know who you are;
when your mission is clear and you
burn with the inner fire of unbreakable will;
no cold can touch your heart;
no deluge can dampen your purpose.
You know that you are alive.

Chief Seattle

Saturday, July 9, 2011

THE KEY IS FORGIVENESS....


Friday, July 8, 2011

HERE'S TO WOMEN


WOMEN are WOW .. just face it!!

They smile when they want to scream.

They sing when they want to cry.

They cry when they are happy and laugh when they are nervous.

They fight for what they believe in.

They stand up for injustice.

They don't take "no" for an answer when they believe there is a better solution.

They go without new shoes so their children can have them.

They go to the doctor with a frightened friend.

They love unconditionally.

They cry when their children excel and cheer when their friends get awards.

They are happy when they hear about a birth or a new marriage.

Their hearts break when a friend dies.

They have sorrow at the loss of a family member, yet they are strong when they think there is no strength left.

They know that a hug and a kiss can heal a broken heart.

Women come in all sizes, in all colors and shapes.

They'll drive, fly, walk, run or e-mail you to show how much they care about you.

The heart of a woman is what makes the world spin! Women do more than just give birth. They bring joy and hope. They give compassion and ideals. They give moral support to their family and friends. Women have a lot to say and a lot to give.

Author Unknown