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When Life is Good; Top Ten

"A leaf fluttered in through the window this morning, as if supported by the rays of the sun, a bird settled on the fire escape, joy in the task of coffee, joy accompanied me as I walked." ~Anais Nin~
“A leaf fluttered in through the window this morning, as if supported by the rays of the sun, a bird settled on the fire escape, joy in the task of coffee, joy accompanied me as I walked.”
~Anais Nin~

Life is good when we think it’s good.

Yes darlings, I know that sounds corny, but it’s a universal truth. Gratitude makes everything just that much more fresh, innocent, crisp and fabulous.

The less fortunate can be the richest people in the world, just by virtue of their attitude, and ability to let the drama of others pass them by without absorbing the synthetic crisis of the mind.

As the years pass, I realize that life does not get easier. Nope. Not at all. Even the old folks I see every day must make major life changes, say good-bye to life-long lovers, give up their homes, and adapt to change.  Wealth may be selective, but karma is universal.

As I predicted and hoped at the turn of the year, 2013 has been a wild ride of letting go, change and hope.

Today, we took a break from our working toward a different life. We packed up the umbrellas and headed west, enjoying the turning of colours in the fields that are the lesser appreciated openers to the autumn symphony of colour we all know and love.

Today it was delicious chocolate at Rheo Thompson, a cold beer and scrumptious sandwich, a visit complete with laughter at Balzac’s, one of the most beautiful little coffee shops in the province, and most importantly, the company of two people I love.

As the world continues to spin out of control in the midst of our false, global economy, we, three of the increasingly squeezed middle class, stopped the world and enjoyed what it had to offer.

My list of ‘Good Things’ for the week;

1) Colleagues who giggle

2) Healthy children

3) Relatives you love and who you love back

4) A secret crush on a really great guy.(Yes my sweet peaches, at this age, you can just enjoy the thrill of the emotion, regardless of whether or not it ever happens.)

5) Becoming a ‘football’ mom for the first time

6) Gorgeous coffee shops

7) Chocolate that feels like silk and tastes like heaven

8) Harlequin romance novels for the nights you just want to escape before you have to go back to work the next day.

9) Leonard Cohen, Willie Nelson and Eminem

10) Homemade cookies still warm from the oven

Simple abundance is highly under-rated. We all have a multitude of people, places and things for which to be grateful.

Send this to someone with a note… “Of all the places I can’t wait to be this winter, it’s wrapped up in your arms in front of the fire, dreaming of the simple things.”

 

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How To Not Suck At Anything

scream nowFirst, just admit that you do, indeed, suck.

Whether you look at the stats, or sit at home wondering where your prince charming is, or continuously hear your teenager’s door slam. Sometimes you just can’t get it right.

Sometimes the key to not sucking is to admit defeat.

Sorta.

Do not admit defeat and then drown yourself in Kit-Kat bars, Fruli Strawberry Beer and fashion magazines. You know, if that’s your sort of thing.

Admit almost defeat. And by almost, I mean hang on and be tenacious with one hand, and ask for help with the other.

Yes, it’s a fine balance my dear ones.

Admit you’ve reached your limit, and then let someone else’s experience, imagination and fresh perspective inspire you.

It’s very difficult to do. I know that, because I’ve recently just had to do that. And it sucked. Hard.

I am very much a type ‘A’ person, a get out and get it done kinda gal.  I have a quiet competitive nature, and when I don’t excel at something, it eats me up inside.

Recently I had to make a very difficult decision. Part of making the decision that I did, involved knowing that I needed help to achieve what I wanted, and what I know that I can.

So, I shall enjoy my white wine spritzers when I come home and close the door on my work day. I will meditate, nurture my body with healthy food, and my mind with positive affirmations.

Hopefully a month from now, having eaten my pride, I will not suck….as much, and I’ll be closer to accepting that I’m far from perfect.

Pour a glass of your best therapist, and listen to a little Frankie Miller…you’re not alone in your ‘sucking at some things’…we all suck sometimes. But you’re going to be ok kid…

 

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She Promised Herself

Promise-to-self

Sunday evening. Time to snuggle in by the fireside, and build ourselves up for another week darlings. Stir up a steamy, rich, cup of cocoa and set your intentions on self-care and joy.  You and I definitely will not be broken….

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Powerful Beyond Measure

Prosperity. Abundance. Hope. Joy.

joy
joy (Photo credit: Ganesh K S)

This has been a daily mantra of mine for quite some time.

Without feeling very prosperous, with a lack of abundance, hope and joy, these four simple words became part of my everyday waking, meditation and my nighttime routine as I threw off the garment of 2012 and headed exposed and vulnerable into 2013.

At midnight, as I toasted my friends, I also silently toasted the success I was sure to find as 2013 rolled on. I vowed that I would look back on 2013 as a year of positive change and transition.

So, we’re just beyond half-way into 2013.  Last night, as I settled in to a bench along the lakeside trail to watch the sunset, I thought of a quote from Marianne Williamson’s, A Return to Love; Reflections on the Principles of A Course in Miracles;

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”

You see, as I walked the lake trail, my wondering at the beauty of nature was interrupted by a pesky anxious thought, “Holy bourbon Batman, next weekend I’m flying solo.” At work that is.  My mind began to race about all the things that I felt less than confident about, and I panicked a bit. I went over a checklist of things ‘to-do’ on Monday morning and then I went over it again about five more times.

Five kilometers later, as I settled in on a bench, the sunset glowed a soft orange-pink over the lake.

Ten years ago, if you would have asked my capped and gowned graduating self which company I dreamed of working for, and what job I wanted to have, this would have been it.  In fact, I remember telling myself that in ten years, this is where I would be. After a bit of a detour, here I am.

Wondering at the beauty of the sunset and getting back to the simple mindfulness meditation of breathing, I realized that I was not afraid of failure. Failure is not, and has never been an option for me.

I realized darlings, that I was somewhat afraid of success.  I was thinking, ” Who am I to be successful?”. When really, the question is, “Who am I not to be?”.

My work is and always has been a call to service.  When most folks are complaining about the tedium of the mundane, I feel energized.  How can I not be successful when I work with love and the belief way down  deep in my fabulous little heart, that what I’m doing for others is ‘good’ work?

Always remember my sweet, tender little plums, you were born to thrive. You were born to be successful, and you are naturally fabulous just the way you are.

Breathe deeply, and hold your head up high as you step out into the light my lovelies. Make every day a great one, and for those days that are a little less than terrific….God gave us champagne!!!

 

 

 

 

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Come As You Are: Sacred Curiosity

Shhh! Don’t tell anyone, but I subscibe to daily meditation tips, inspirational quotes and other such nonsense. 

I am passing this along. I believe the quote is from pages 4-5 of Pema Chodron’s book Awakening  Loving-Kindness.

If you wish to subscribe to these messages, I believe that this link will work for you.

THE PATH IS CURIOSITY

The path of meditation and the path of our lives altogether has to do with curiosity, inquisitiveness. The ground is ourselves; we’re here to study ourselves and to get to know ourselves now, not later. People often say to me, “I wanted to come and have an interview with you, I wanted to write you a letter, I wanted to call you on the phone, but I wanted to wait until I was more together.” And I think, “Well, if you’re anything like me, you could wait forever!” So come as you are. The magic is being willing to open to that, being willing to be fully awake to that. One of the main discoveries of meditation is seeing how we continually run away from the present moment, how we avoid being here just as we are. That’s not considered to be a problem; the point is to see it.

Forward to a friend.

 
 

EXCERPTED FROM

Book cover

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Fabulous Friends & Yummy Menfolk

1934 - Party On The Roof - Part 1
1934 – Party On The Roof – Part 1 (Photo credit: clotho98)

Have you ever had one of those relationships that make you feel relieved when that certain someone finally walks out the door?

It doesn’t have to be a man my lovelies, I’m talking about friends.

My sweethearts, if you’re still putting up with a lover who leaves you feeling exhausted, and not in the delicious-oh-my-goodness-I-can’t-sit-down way we all deserve, then you need to snap out of it.

But I digress….

I had a full weekend of socializing, and catching up with friends who leave me feeling refreshed, smiling, and spiritually buoyed knowing that, although I don’t ‘have-it-all’ by the Bank of Canada’s standard, I do have-it-all when it comes to friends.

None of us will retire wealthy or famous (well, maybe I will, but you know what I’m getting at darlings…). You don’t need a lot of money to be blissfully happy, well-fed, well-hydrated, or well-informed.

My weekends involve a lot of art, a lot of literature, much creativity and enough stimulating company and wine to keep me motivated the other five days of the week.

As is the case with most writers, I like time to myself. Time to daydream, create and observe. But this weekend, I packed in more social time than I’ve had lately.

Following a lovely day at the art gallery, taking in the Revealing the Early Rennaisance exhibit, a relaxing glass of wine, and lovely lunch hosted by my pals,  I waved good-bye to my friend’s husband.

After over 30 years together, she still refers to him as, ‘The Animal’. Yes, my delightfully sassy stalks of rhubarb, my pals only settle for the best lovers.

Anyway, The Animal waved goodbye, and I thought to myself, “I’m so lucky to have such wonderful friends.”

Later that day I saw a pal whom I haven’t seen in over 13 years. Why did we meet again? We’ve come together as a group to support another friend of mine. She’s stocking her new home following a heartbreaking marriage split.

Later still, I celebrated a birthday, and earth hour with more friends in a beautifully candlelit room with yummy treats, more wine, and good company. Oh, and a real cutie-patootie-fair-haired slice of man pie, who appeared just as I was leaving. Dee-lish!

This morning I met my wonderful mumster for coffee and a wander at a country craft show, and finally made it home to nest.

Although it was a whirlwind weekend, I enjoyed all of the company I shared. These are the best days of my life.

My heart bursts with gladness at our sharing of one another’s lives; in sickness and in health, for richer for poorer. This is the heart of friendship.

Thank you all so much for your amazing friendship that makes everything ok.