Great Stories

I have been reading a great book filled with wonderful stories, so every now and then I am going to do a post titled: Great Stories that will have a great story I come across that inspires great feelings. I don’t think you can ever get too many good things to fill your life, so take a few minutes and read these Great Stories.

Audrey-in-My-Fair-Lady-audrey-hepburn-11216574-880-900Audrey Hepburn in My Fair Lady

Here is a good one for today…Many of you have heard of the musical “My Fair Lady” but did you know this… In the 1920’s Frederic Loewe, Vienna-born composer of My Fair Lady arrived in the United States. At the time, Loewe, a gifted pianist unable to find a market for his talent, was discouraged and depressed. And because he had no money to make further payments, his one prized possession, his piano, was about to be repossessed. This looming event represented a final blow to his musical aspirations.     On the morning the movers were to arrive for his piano, and while he gloomily waited, Loewe decided to play one last time and did so with rare inspiration. Bent over the keyboard and intent on his music, Loewe did not hear the moving men enter the room. When at last finished, he glanced up and was startled to see an audience—three moving men seated on the floor.     The men said nothing and made no movement toward the piano. Instead, they opened their wallets and pooled enough money to pay the overdue installment. Placing the money on the piano, they left empty-handed.     These men, themselves probably existing on meager wages, gave because they recognized Loewe’s musical genius and realized they could not, in good conscience, take from Loewe the one thing that gave him comfort and offered hope. Deeming the needs of another human being superordinate to their own, they walked away, never to know, through their humble giving, the gift they bestowed upon mankind.   -taken from The Heart of Goodness

I think this story illustrates the good heart people have and genuinely want others to succeed.

I think this is also a great story that gives hope and shows that no matter how bad things may get, there are bigger plans for you and your purpose. Have hope and continue on in your passionate pursuits, you never know where they will take you. Have faith in the bigger picture. You were made to do amazing things.  -Peace and love to you.  H


Lessons learned from the movie All About Steve!

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This movie I know will have a variety of reviews—many will think it is a waste of time or not find the humor in it. Others may enjoy it, but for some reason I LOVE Sandra Bullock in this movie. I was endeared by her optimistic, quirky character and here is why…

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Mary Horowitz: crossword puzzle creator, loves words, wears red boots with everything, she is an eternal optimist despite what others say, she is smart, pretty and just wants to be normal—she thinks! She speaks 17 different languages, knows an unending number of random facts, talks to her pet hamster “Carol” and is such a joy to be around that her parents let her live with them, while her apt is being “fumigated” (for years).

Here are some great quotes and lessons learned from this cute movie…

Mary LOVE’S Crosswords, so there are some good quotes to take to heart

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In life as in crosswords, some days are harder than others, and that’s what keeps your brain alive. To keep surviving those tough days is to pick yourself up, and stay focused on your life’s purpose. For me, that’s imparting the joy of crosswording to all mankind. Ahhh.. crosswording the most spectacular fun a person can have without passing out. -Mary         I think all of us have those moments where we need some sort of distraction to pull us through a tough spot in our life. I think each of us has our own way of dealing with things, whether it is losing yourself in a golf game, reading the paper, doing a crossword, swimming laps…some days may be harder & having a good outlet to let go is a good thing.

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We really should try and make it work, because, so he decides for me to be normal, then normal we shall be.
– Mary          Mary wanted so desperately to feel normal, to be accepted, to be on the path to what everyone expects, so she decided if Steve wanted her to be normal, than that was what she was going to strive for. I think too often we can get caught in the trap of what everyone else expects us to be, to do, to dress like, to…we get lost for a bit, until we are able to define who it is we truly want to be.

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Yes crosswords are a lot like life in that way, they’re only boring if you don’t have sense of adventure. – Mary          Life does need a bit of adventure, even little things. The other night I went on a hike with my husband & came across a large log across a stream. It wasn’t very high & the water wasn’t too deep, but I wanted a little sense of adventure, so I looked at my husband and said, “I am going to cross it!” I knew if I fell in, it would be a little swim, but I wanted that little sense of adventure, so I went for it. We need that every now and then.

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Mary is not a psycho, you’re the psycho. She’s just a smart girl with red boots. – Angus          Often we are judged by the clothes we wear, the way we talk, the things we say. But I hope over time we can realize that what others say doesn’t matter unless we make it matter. I have had many discussions with my young daughter about people calling her things like, “Fat”, “Little Miss Perfect”, “Brainiac”…I have always looked at her and said, “Do you think you are fat or perfect or…” I always explain that others may say all sorts of things they think, but its what you think about yourself that truly matters the most.

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Mary: You know one of my favorite ingredients in crossword is, perseverance. If you quit a puzzle you can’t finish it.
Sure every once in a while you’ll run into a doozy that you can’t ever solve in a million years but if you stick with it, 
you’ll figure it out… eventually. Worst thing you can do is leave it unfinished. It’s never the solution is it?
Howard: You know what my favorite part of our crossword is? When you realized you know something you didn’t think you knew.

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She doesn’t pretend to be someone that she’s not. -Steve (about Mary)          This was a hilarious part in the movie. The one time Mary steps out of her natural character this is what happens. (shorter skirt, bra showing, wild catastrophe) I think this is a great lesson for all of us. We should always be striving to be ourselves, no pretending, no illusions of self, just straight up who we are. No regrets.

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Words, people, words. There are meaningful words, there are pointless words, and then, there are words that hurt.
Mary why can’t you be like every other girl, why do you know all that useless information…why do you wear those stupid, red boots all the time – Mary          We have all experienced all of these types of words and people. What have you learned?

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I wear these red boots because it feels like ten friends on a camping trip! -Mary          Mary tried to take her own happiness everywhere she went.     What do you do to try and make your life a little brighter?

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He was my ticket to normal -Mary     Why do you want to be normal? -deaf girl          I thought this was a great example of times in our life where we hold a certain expectation of something & then reality brings us back to truly understanding what it is we really need in our life.

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If life is like a crossword puzzle, then its worth, its greatness should be judge in the same way.
Is it solvable? Is it entertaining? Does it sparkle?- Mary        I just loved her positive way of being.

Mary, Don’t ever change for anybody. -Steve           Redemption! Finally. Mary gets the lesson & so does Steve.

image49New York Times crosswords editor Will Shorts says, “we have a natural compulsion to fill empty spaces.” I like to think he means not just crosswords, but the empty spaces inside of us that come from making your way in a world that doesn’t always embrace unique. I tried to fill my empty spaces with words, and puzzles, and steve. But that wasn’t the answer. Now I know. On the journey of life just find someone as normal as you, if not a whole bunch. -Mary          I love that analogy of finding oneself. We often FILL our voids, our spaces with many things (good and bad) in hopes that we will FEEL something. The world and all that is in it will not make us a better version of ourself, that is up to us.

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Oh, and here’s a little bit of fresh Mary Horowitz wisdom,if you love someone set him free, if you have to stalk him he probably wasn’t yours in the first place. – Mary          Just a cute, funny, silly show with heart.

Mandatory credit: TM & copyright 20th Century Fox. No Merchandising. Editorial Use Only. No Book Cover Usage. No Book or TV usage without prior permission from Rex Manadatory Credit: Photo by c.20thC.Fox/Everett / Rex Features (998550m) ALL ABOUT STEVE, Sandra Bullock All About Steve - 2009

On the journey of life find someone as normal as you. -Mary

It is a sweet show with heart. I hope all these fun images made you want to watch. smile. smile. FYI–There is a little scene in the van where she jumps Steve & it gets a little hot. There are also a couple of swear words, but other than that—I truly enjoyed the journey. Enjoy and make your own judgement!


Life IS Beautiful

lifeisbeautifulOver the weekend we saw the movie Inside Out with our daughter and the greatest lesson from the movie for me…you have to HAVE the good with the bad in life. Together life is sweeter, so with that, here is a great video about LIFE and how beautiful everything about it is! Enjoy.

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Have a beautiful day.  -H


In honor of His day

I awoke this morning & the house was quiet. It was six a.m. & I decided to sit and have some time to do a little reading. I opened my book &  began to read. The chapter I began was all about compassion for all living things, I continued reading only to be stirred within my heart of a conversation I had just had the night before with my daughter. We had been to a family dinner with her cousins who were sharing their details of killing the local nuisances in their yard. The parents had been frustrated by the voles and golfers, so the kids were talking about how they were shooting them during a dinner discussion.

Later that night, my sweet daughter, innocently brought up the discussion & shared how she couldn’t believe they were shooting the animals. My heart sank at such a conversation.

This morning as I read I came across a very sweet story that accompanied this very topic…here is the story.

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“Every creature is full of God and is a book about God.” -Meister Eckhart

Albert Schwitzer tells of the moment his reverence for life’s creatures came within full consciousness. As a boy, Schweitzer was with friends who proposed that they go up into the hills and kill birds. Reluctant, but afraid of being scorned, he accompanied the group. Arriving at a tree in which a flock of birds was singing, the boys prepared for the kill by putting stones in their catapults. But then Schweitzer heard the church bells begin to ring—mingling music with birdsong—and to him, the music was represented a voice from heaven. Shooing the birds away, he went home, his priorities clear: reverence for life was more important to him than any fear of being taunted or laughed at by his peers. Notes Schweitzer, as the bells rang, he remembers how deeply moved and grateful he was that, on that day, “they rang into my heart the commandments ‘Thou shalt not kill.”    [taken from The Heart of Goodness by Jo Ann Larsen]

I was pondering further this morning & thinking of the upcoming Father’s Day holiday. What greater time to honor the greatest Father of All. I pray that as you celebrate those fathers you love this week, that you will take a sweet moment and also think of all the great gifts and blessings that are bestowed upon you and your family by the most loving Father of all. I think a great way of honoring our Father in Heaven is to see the beautiful things all around you and give praise and appreciation. I think listening to the song of birds and marveling at their existence, their heavenly voices, the small miracles they are and finding a deeper sacred reverence for life itself would also be a great gift. I think teaching our innocent children about having a greater respect for this sacred reverence and then taking a quiet moment in the solitude of the day, filling our hearts with gratitude and joy to be able to experience this world as a whole–that would be a beautiful way to honor Him.

-Peace to you.  -H


What are you going to do for Father’s Day?

In honor of the great men in our lives…great youtube

Ideas for a successful Father’s Day:

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pic from http://www.ourboathouse.com/blog/10-ways-to-have-a-fun-backyard-campout/

Campout in your backyard! My Dad just wanted to do some dutch oven cooking, have a fire & make smokes, so we have decided to invite the whole family to bring over their tents & have a campout in honor of our Dad.

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Let them do something that is all their own!! Father’s Day weekend my husband is racing in a Ragnar race (Two vans, 10+ people) traveling & running overnight. This may not sound like an ideal activity for many, but for my man, he was all in! Give your husband a day to do something that he wants to do…let him have a day fishing, golfing, favorite breakfast, lunch & dinner, let them go geo caching, a bike ride, watch a game, anything that their heart desires. Let them have some time to do something they enjoy.

Sifting-Gold1Go do something of interest: My husband has wanted to go Gold panning, so one of his gifts is a gold pan & a trip up a local canyon. Is there a lake your family has wanted to hike to or a museum you have wanted to visit. Maybe try paint balling, go bowling, go carting, visit a amusement park,Take the family and do something you have all wanted to see or do.

Mini-Fruit-Pizzas-with-Marshmallow-Creme-Frosting-03_miniMake something together: Last night my daughter and her Dad made cookies together. It was so fun to hear them talking ingredients, cookie paddles, teaching, learning, bonding. Make a fun family craft (handprint tie, slime, play dough, fridge magnets, cards, etc) Make something yummy like fruit pizza’s, homemade pizza’s, personal omelets, favorite meal, etc.

1114-588x352Share stories: Personal stories (Talk about when your kids were born. How you felt as parents, as a father for the first time) Make up stories (begin a story and have each family member add-on to the story or find funny pictures in magazines or coloring books & make up stories about the images)

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Make a soundtrack of your life: Think of your Dad/Father & the songs they always sing, love to listen to, remind you of things about them and make a special soundtrack & listen to it all day long. OR gift it to them, so they can enjoy it on their own.

final-brighter-feet-copyMake a special memory book with Personal cards/letters: I had all my siblings hand write a letter to my Dad & send me a pic of the letters. I then compiled them with pics in a Walmart Photo book & we are going to gift it to him. It turned out darling because the grand kids also drew pictures & wrote letters. It is priceless.

happy-springPlain old Quality Time: Take the day & do nothing but be together! Go on a walk, take a nap, make yummy food, play cards, watch a favorite television show, read stories, do anything…TOGETHER!

Whatever you do for your Father or Dad…enjoy it! Make it memorable & enjoy every moment of the day! It is that one special day that is all about those great men in your life. Cherish and be grateful you have them.

-Peace to you.  -H


BIG LEARNING: Loving yourself

I wanted to share a few great ideas and big learning on loving yourself and becoming your best. I found the following in a great book by Jo Ann Larsen

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“If an individual is able to love productively, he loves himself, too; if he can love only others, he cannot love at all” -Erich Fromm

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“If one is out of touch with oneself, then one cannot touch others.”  -Anne Morrow Lindbergh

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“Fully loving ourselves also entails recognizing that we, as ever-differentiating human beings, have a right, and a responsibility, to nurture ourselves and to perpetuate our growth.”  -Jo Ann Larsen

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“We are all in the endless quest of becoming—of creating, with our own chisel, our own masterpiece—that of ourselves.”     “We’re all given an assignment in life to discover the ways in which we’re exceptional, and then to live a joyful life.”       “God gave us all certain gifts, but it is up to us to decide how to use them in such a way that even the Being who gave them to us will look down one day in admiration and say, ‘Hmmm, I never thought of that way before.”  -Bernie Siegel. 

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“If you have anything valuable to contribute to the world, it will come through the expression of your own personality–that single spark of divinity that sets you off and makes you different from any other living creature.”  -Bruce Barton

freedomWhen we view ourselves as “masters” chipping away each day at our own masterpieces, others—as well as ourselves—are beneficiaries, for we can give back amply to the world and to add to its goodness. 

Perhaps life’s greatest challenge is to continually refine ourselves so finally at last we do know how to fully live. Speaking of the concerted effort involved in such refining, Harry Emerson Fosdick says, “No horse gets anywhere until he is harnessed. No stream or gas ever drives anything until it is confined. No Niagara is ever turned into light and power until it is channeled. No life ever grows great until it is focused, dedicated, disciplined.”

As human beings, we are unique and unrepeatable events in the universe. Refining thus becomes a challenge of accepting ourselves as the treasures we are. We may not—in the world’s eyes or our own—come into life supposedly as adorned as others. Nor must we. To be ourselves, to fully develop our own attributes, and to give all that we might, is to stand unadorned—in and of ourselves–as perfect products of nature ever in the process of becoming.

Have a beautiful day. Peace to You. -H


LIVE each day!

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Just last week we visited my husband’s fathers grave. He has been dead for twenty years. Wow, how time goes by so quickly. I looked around the cemetery and walked by many headstones covered with flowers, rocks doodles with sharpie pens, a family having a picnic, balloons, flags, stuffed animals…it was a beautiful sight to see so many flowers in one place, but also very humbling to be among so many living that were still trying to hold onto a piece of a loved one lost.

This past week as I passed cemetery after cemetery looking at all the adorned burial places, it made me think of a great thought from Og Mandino’s book, The Greatest Salesman in the World.

The scroll marked 5… LIVE EACH DAY AS IF IT IS YOUR LAST

There was a particular part  of this scroll that made me think of all those who have passed & even more grateful for today. “This day is all I have and these hours are now my eternityI greet this sunrise with cries of joy as a prisoner who is reprieved from death. I lift mine arms with thanks for this priceless gift of a new day. So too, I will beat upon my heart with gratitude as I consider all who greeted yesterday’s sunrise who are no longer with the living today.

It made me think of those who are not here any longer, who cannot greet a new day with gratitude, who cannot sit and enjoy a sunset, a child’s smile, a sip of the fresh, spring air. It makes me think of so many tiny things we take for granted each day. I only hope and pray that as I look at the stars tonight, gratitude will fill my heart, that I will sleep knowing that appreciation sang from my soul.

-Peace to you today. Thankful for this beautiful gift of a day.  -H


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