True to YOU

I am not talking about selfishness. I am talking about being true to yourself in all of your essence, so that you can then better serve the world.

The world needs light!! Lots of light. There are plenty of people struggling to find their true light, that little spark of divinity. We are made of stardust! We are illumination and wonder and magnificence and we glow when we are feeling good.

Have you ever seen someone light up with an idea or excitement over something that they are interested in? Have you seen someone genuinely smile? Do you feel good inside when you see others embrace? There are little glimmers of this stardust that seems to fall in the eyes of others, so it is only obvious that YOU have it too!!

We all have the potential to shine, to find those things that light us up, to share our radiance with others.

Here are a few reminders of who YOU are…

Peace and Love to YOU today.

GREAT STORIES about perspective

Morocco-by-campervan-sidi-kaouki-beach-fireThe only survivor of a shipwreck was washed up on a small, uninhabited island. He prayed feverishly for God to rescue him, and every day he scanned the horizon for help, but none seemed forthcoming.

Exhausted, he eventually managed to build a little hut out of driftwood to protect him from the elements and to store his few possessions. But then one day, after scavenging for food, he arrived home to find his little hut in flames, the smoke rolling up to the sky.

The worst had happened; everything was lost. He was stunned with grief and anger. “God, how could you do this to me!” he cried. Early the next day, however, he was awakened by the sound of a ship that was approaching the island. It had come to rescue him. “How did you know I was here?” asked the weary man of his rescuers. “We saw your smoke signal,” they replied.

It is easy to get discouraged when things are going badly. But we shouldn’t lose heart, because God is at work in our lives, even in the midst of pain and suffering. Remember, next time your little hut is burning to the ground–it just may be a smoke signal that summons The Grace of God.

“Sometimes a change of perspective is all it takes to see the light.”                                   -Dan Brown

main_900This story reminds me of the zen parable of the Chinese farmer

Once there was a  farmer who worked his poor farm together with his son and their horse. When the horse ran off one day, neighbors came to say, “How unfortunate for you!” The farmer replied, “Maybe yes, maybe no.”

When the horse returned, followed by a herd of wild horses, the neighbors gathered around and exclaimed, “What good luck for you!” The farmer stayed calm and replied, “Maybe yes, maybe no.”
While trying to tame one of wild horses, the farmer’s son fell, and broke his leg. He had to rest up and couldn’t help with the farm chores. “How sad for you,” the neighbors cried. “Maybe yes, maybe no,” said the farmer.
Shortly thereafter, a neighboring army threatened the farmer’s village. All the young men in the village were drafted to fight the invaders. Many died. But the farmer’s son had been left out of the fighting because of his broken leg. People said to the farmer, “What a good thing your son couldn’t fight!” “Maybe yes, maybe no,” was all the farmer said.

 

vishen-lahkiani-book-list-reading-change-perspective-socialSometimes you just need to change your perspective. Enjoy your day!  

 

Magic & the little things

670px-User-Completed-Image-Make-a-Rainbow-Rose-2015.11.30-17.22.47.0HAPPY MAY 1st!!

For years at our house we have celebrated a special day on May 1st, FAIRY DAY!! Since my daughter was very little we created our own holiday to celebrate the magic of believing, fairies, wishes and the little things that bring a little extra magic.

I think life can always use an extra dose of magic, a sprinkling of well wishes, and believing in things that are full of  wonder.

Don’t fool yourself. I know there is a little child within every one of you that gets excited over little things like eating a yummy slice of cheesecake, walking under an umbrella as rain is falling all around you, watching shooting stars, hiking a mountain filled with spring blossoms, standing beneath a waterfall, biking down a hill with the wind hitting your face, Colorful flowers, driving in a convertible with the top down, little umbrellas in tropical drinks, glitter on greeting cards, surprises, butterfly kisses, a smile, warm showers, great food, driving fast, a colorful sunset, being creative, playing, the way the sun hits trees, rainbows ….there are lots of magical things that life has to offer.

6a011168668cad970c01156f74a945970cNOW. MAKE YOUR OWN LIST of things you find that are magical about YOUR life.  You don’t have to make a list, but just take a minute and think about it.

What surprises you? What surprises do you LOVE?

What colors in nature INSPIRe you? What colors surround you & why?

What activity brings you so much JOY?

What is your favorite food or drink to enJOY?

What do you like about a night sky? What do you like about a morning sky?

Do you get excited to see a rainbow?

What dream still whispers within your heart?

Do you have special rituals you do with your children? Does it make you both HAPPY?

Where would you go if you could go anywhere?

Where do you want to go in your own town?

Is there something you want to learn or grow from?

What makes you smile?

Hope these thoughts and ideas have you swirling with wonder and gratitude.

Have a BEAUTIFUL day!!  -H

SIX Impossible Things

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I have been on a personal quest to find the ‘newness’ of me because I feel I have lost a little bit of my ‘muchness.’8a4035be052ac58d807dd87d88e8257a

I think the stresses of life creep in and you have to fight to hold onto the places within your heart that yearn to dream, to be free, to fly.

The story and lessons held within Alice in Wonderland are very dear to my heart. We all have places within us that are seeking to find a deeper part of ourselves, trying to find the right path for our lives, trying to face fears & dragons, trying to follow our creative imaginings…

SO, I have been trying to break free of the mundane & learn ‘new’ things, see ‘new’ places and seek to find more of myself each day. I think if we are not stretching when our lives seem to be shrinking, we are not going to grow to our best potential.

 

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If we are seeking to learn SOMETHING ‘NEW’ each day, then we are not the same person we were yesterday. We have stretched, even a little.  Seek out something new for you.

 

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Seek out something to do or something to go towards. If you don’t have books you want to read, you will never begin to read them. If you don’t have pages you want to write, your novel will never be finished. If you don’t have a direction of ANYTHING you want to do, you will never begin. ACTION: Seek out your personal desires, places you wish to see, hobbies you desire to try, books you want to read, people you want to learn something from…pick a path and begin.  ‘Begin at the beginning and go on till you come to the end: then stop’

 

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No matter what—DREAM. Instead of looking and thinking “IMPOSSIBLE” change your perspective to “I’M POSSIBLE”.  I LOVE that way of thinking!! And if that is not enough google the stories of Hulda Crooks, the woman who inspired the movie, JOY, Joy Mangano, Nick Vujicic [you may have heard of him–inspiring], Erik Weihenmayer [heard him speak & he was truly inspiring].    ACTION: Think of a dream you have held in your heart for awhile. Ask yourself, “Is it still something I want to do?” OR “Is there a different dream I would like to hold in my heart instead.”     Take one of your impossible things and do something each week or morning & take a tiny step in that direction.

 

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This quote to me is the epitome of not knowing your self. When one does not take the time to seek out their purpose, their direction, their dreams, their inner compass, their knowing, then they are left with a shell of insecurity. When someone knows who they are, what they want, where they are going, what they need, etc. they are more ready to face any challenge with the strength and knowledge of who they are.     ACTION: What is something you can do to inspire you? 

 

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Remember this. If YOU don’t believe, then who will? It is your life. It is your dream. It becomes your reality. If you don’t believe in the magic of this life or who you are, you will never find it. ACTION: SEEK and YOU SHALL FIND IT. Seek out the magic, even in the ordinary.

 

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Everyone is put into a different reality than the person next to you. We each have different struggles, challenges, stories, lives than anyone else. Your reality of the experiences you have are different than even those who may share similar experiences. Every single one of us are on a different journey, facing different fears, seeing different things, creating different outcomes. Life is different for everyone. ACTION: Look at your reality and find the things you are most grateful for & begin to give thanks for your reality. You have so much more than you know.

 

 

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I think if we could go through our day feeling on purpose, feeling like we are heading in a direction, feeling like we have learned something, feeling positive, feeling confident, sending love, doing good…we would find peace in knowing we were becoming. Each day is about becoming a little better than before.  ACTION: do something that enhances your day, that stretches, that helps you grow, that encourages self-awareness, that promotes a better you.

 

 

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LIFE is an ADVENTURE. Never stop seeking to find the adventures that lie within it & within YOU. 

 

Happy. HAPPY. Joy. JOY.  -H

 

 

Deeper questions for growth

I gathered some good stuff to help us grow with deeper questions. If you are seeking inner personal truths, direction for your life or just want to make sure you know what you want, here is some great info.

MindfulHappiness-JournalWritingFrom Martha Beck article:

You’re about to change your life. The more honest you are, the more you’ll find yourself doing what you love, with people you love, in places you love. You’ll realize that nothing really true is ever unloving, and nothing unloving is ever really true. That wild creature, your true self, will come to meet you, then trust you, then guide you home, one day at a time. Honestly.

Her question:  Am I living my deepest truth right now? Journal it out.

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o-SOUL-QUESTIONS-facebookFrom a great article by Liz Kimball, Oprah

“You know who you are, and you know what you want.”  -Lao Tzu

You have ‘shoulds’ disguised as wants.

Journal her following questions to see what comes up.

I should _______________ today because _________________.

I should _______________ this month because ___________________.

I should _______________ this year because ________________________.

But when someone’s voice deadens and they tell me that they need to stay at their company 5 more years…or collaborate with the fanciest person they know because they feel like they should, I know I am having a conversation with a person whose shoulds have drowned out the voice of their own soul.

And that soul voice is the one in which I’m most rigorously interested in, because it contains directions for how you are meant to evolve.

“There is something in every one of you that waits and listens for the sound of the genuine in yourself. It is the only true guide you will ever have.”  -Howard Thurman

Her question:   Today, the genuine sounds like ______________________________.

Social Psychology researchers and developers of the Self-Concordance Model of achievement Dr. Kennon M. Sheldon and Dr. Andrew J. Elliott found not only that we are more likely to put sustained effort into self-concordant goals (goals that are aligned with who we are and that make our hearts sing) and therefore are more likely to attain them, but we also gain deeper well-being when we actually accomplish them.

Her question: What secret dream am I keeping close to my heart?

Your soul is oriented by evolution–not targets–and cares much less about the particulars of what you do and much more about fulfilling what in you is wanting to grow.

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8 questions from Deepak Chopra

Who am I?

What do I want?

What’s my purpose in this life?

What sort of contribution do I want to make?

What are my unique skills?

Who are my heroes?

What is a meaningful relationship–what do I expect from one, and what do I give?

What am I grateful for?

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Depositphotos_1855294_m-850x400Soul Questions:

What do you do or have done in your life that makes you happy?

What have you always wanted to do or try, but were afraid to?

What values do you hold most important in your life?

What are your greatest strengths and talents?

What books and movies are your drawn to? This is a good question because you can see the patterns of what you put into your life. I found a few years ago that I only wanted to watch movies that left me feeling good. Evaluate the things you are putting in & make sure they are uplifting and leave you positive.

What answers are you seeking for your life?

How would you describe yourself to someone? This question will help you see What beautiful things would you say? What things you may find hard to face about yourself.

What do you feel you attract into your life? Positive or Negative?

What makes you feel ALIVE? This is a good question because it makes you evaluate the things you do, the people you associate, the places you venture, the hobbies you have, your beliefs…what makes you feel alive?

Do you like change? Answer this one honestly. smile. smile. I have found change to be what you make it. I have moved and moved & faced change time and time again. I learned to embrace it & at times miss it. It is like anything. It is what you make it. Change helps you see new things, try new experiences, meet new people, find places within yourself that feel exhilarated by change. Seek to embrace it.

What drains your energy? What recharges your energy? Are there people, activities, job requirements, daily tasks, expectations, etc. that drain your energy? Begin to notice these things and make the necessary changes to rid your life of toxic energy & fill in the spaces with things that light you up.

 

light painting (3 of 5)Well, I don’t want to overwhelm you with so many great questions, so this is it for today. I think this is a great start. I will follow-up with more questions at a later date.

Have a beautiful day. Know you are blessed and loved.  Peace to you.  -H

SOUL SEEKERS: Thoughts by Sue Monk Kidd

maxresdefault-2I just watched a Super Soul Sunday with Oprah interviewing Sue Monk Kidd and wanted to share a few of my highlights from it. Enjoy!

Sue Monk Kidd has a unique story–mother, wife, nurse–the “safe life” and when she turned 30 she felt a deeper calling and purpose. She then announced to her family, “I am going to be a writer.” She wrote for years and at the age of 53 had a NY Best Seller from her book, The Secret Life of Bees, which was a best seller for more than 2 years & sold over 6 million copies.

I have not read any of her books, but her interview was inspiring. I am sure I will pick up her book to understand her even more. The BOLD quotes below were from the interview with Sue Monk Kidd. I then follow those up with my own thoughts about the quotes.

At one point in her life she read the works of Thomas Merton and his words really meant something deeper to her. It made her seek beyond herself and her religion.

 

7205282830_d87f20552e_b“The attention of the heart is truly what prayer is.”     I liked this thought because you can see how true it is. If you find wonder in the symmetry of leaves or the shadows of a tree, you can get lost in the lines of nature and become calm. OR, you can get lost in the attention of the world and not find peace, but noise and distraction. Where you place your attention does matter.

 

favim-com-23027“We are always seeking a place of belonging.”     I could relate to this thought because so much of my life was spent in a religion that is very tribe like. When I decided to seek my own path, it has been my path that I have had to find my own sense of personal belonging and freedom. I have not had to place my beliefs or my place in the hands of others. It is my space. My place.

 

4“Something that brings us alive, pay attention to that.”     We are all seekers of things that make us come alive, that fill us with excitement, that give us that sense of wholeness and purpose.  When you begin to learn something new, to find a new direction, there is something that comes alive within us and and we want more.

 

10-reasons-every-girl-should-study-abroad-4-1473842587“There is no place so awake and alive as the edge of becoming.”   I think we can all relate to this thought because we have had moments, inspiration, thrill as we stand on the edge of an idea, a dream, a newness, a becoming. You feel so alive!

 

rumi-voice-words-listen-2s5j.jpg_thumb_600w-square“Listen to the yearning within.”     I think we all need to get to that point where we truly listen within and wait patiently for direction, answers, inspiration and have a faith that we will begin to hear the yearnings of our heart.

 

pic-Love-Heart-Hands“Ask for the thing that lies at the bottom of your heart.”    I think as we begin to truly listen within, we will get deeper and deeper to the true knowing that lies at the bottom of our hearts. We have deeply innate knowing of a greater divineness that is held deeply within our hearts. It is the greatest gift, if we can learn to unbury it.

 

635836773350119896432457799_who-am-i-1024x575“Who am I?” Oprah shared how she was asked to answer this question and it took her a few days to really take it in and answer—NOT the labels she has or the labels the world has given her.     Sue then shared a similar experience—all the labels of the external self vs the TRUE inner self. She said, ‘maybe that is the point to life, to discover that part, to align with it, become more a part of it.”

 

thank-you-1“Always seek, but always acknowledge when you find something.”     This was a very true point for me. I have been a seeker for most of my life & I hear this thought & know I have not taken the appropriate time to say THANK YOU for the many gifts I have been able to Seek & Find. THANK YOU. THANK YOU. THANK YOU.

 

St.-Clair-Beach-Sunrise-8She quoted William Wordsworth saying we need “spots of time” to remember we are holy, this is divine.     I like the idea of having “spots of time” throughout your day to get quiet, to remember the holy reverence that is life.

 

862-03808243“We truly become what we pay attention to. If we pay attention to our fears, worries…that becomes our life.”     This is a good reminder for all of us to pay attention to what you truly pay attention to.  Are your days filled with worry and regret? or are your days filled with gratitude and love? Listen to the words you say, the thoughts you think and what energy you are putting out into the world. We truly do affect our lives & those around us. What are you focusing on?

 

45biglovequotesrefurbOprah then did a Q&A:

O: Point of Life.    SMK: to LOVE and CREATE

O: What you know for sure.   SMK: Just to BE is HOLY. Just to LIVE is a GIFT.     BEAUTIFUL.

Hope you were able to take something good from the highlights of this interview. I LOVE learning and sharing. We can learn from everything and everyone!!

Have a beautiful day. -H

 

 

 

 

Happy Spring!

This post is dedicated to everything SPRING!! Wahoo. It is finally beginning to defrost, bloom, and become a world full of color again.

photo_background-fence_lgPLANT FLOWERS. My daughter just did a school project to help our local bee populations. She did an educational outreach program to 5 schools within our community. She handed out seed packets for the children to plant at their homes and school. Flowers are so good for everything. Get out and plant some flowers that attract bees. Bees help pollinate 1/3 of the food we eat. Don’t be afraid of them. Help them.

 

aHR0cDovL21lZGlhLmJlc3RvZm1pY3JvLmNvbS9HLzUvNTIwMjc3L29yaWdpbmFsL2Jlc3RfY2FtZXJhc19jb3Zlcl9pbWFnZS5qcGc=TAKE PICTURES OF THE BEAUTIFUL BLOOMS. You can’t help but be in awe of the beautiful blooms of spring.

 

photoGO ON A BIKE RIDE. I Love the wind blowing my hair and the feeling of the wind as you bike through beautiful scenery. Find a new place near you that will be perfect for that easy ride or a scenic, mountain experience. Find a place you want to ride and make it happen.

 

20140515-293054-kebabsEAT FOOD OFF OF A STICK. I laughed out loud as I looked in my rear view mirror and spotted a guy behind me stopped at a light and enjoying a giant skewer of meat on a stick. As he pulled up next to us, I told my daughter to look over at him. She began to laugh as she watched him lick and then shove an entire cupcake into his mouth. This guy was living the good life!! Here are 70 delicious foods on a stick!! http://www.delish.com/cooking/recipe-ideas/g2791/foods-on-sticks/

 

BBQSPRING IS A GREAT TIME TO BBQ! Here are a few links to some of the best bbq recipes out there…FOODNETWORK recipes http://www.foodnetwork.com/grilling/grilling-central-barbecue/best-backyard-barbecue-recipes.    ALLRECIPES http://allrecipes.com/recipes/88/bbq-grilling/ and COOKING LIGHT RECIPES http://www.cookinglight.com/food/top-rated-recipes/five-star-grill-recipes

 

picnicfor2GO MEATLESS for a bit. My husband is a meat man and I am a vegetarian, so our meals are always a mash up. My husband has been getting sick when he eats too much meat, so I have challenged him to give up the meat for a bit. I think it is a good thing for the body and gives your system a bit of a break. Spring is a great time to eat great salads, bbq veggies, and give your body a break.

 

picnic1EAT OUTSIDE. I love pulling out the patio chair cushions, putting up an umbrella and preparing for the sun!! Wahoo. It gets everything feeling right to pull up a chair and eat outside. Outdoor spaces open up and invite you to talk longer, breathe in fresh air, and enjoy the natural landscape. I also LOVE a good picnic. Who doesn’t enjoy throwing out a blanket, lounging under a tree and enjoying a yummy sandwich, good music or a good book, birds chirping, sun shining. Always a good time!

 

11127_Spring_Cleaning_800SPRING CLEAN. Spring cleaning is a perfect time to evaluate what you truly need in your life. Going through closets and clothes allows you to swap out cool cottons for heavy winter clothing. It also allows you to get rid of clothing you haven’t worn in the last year & donate them to someone who could use them. Clear out clutter to allow better things into your life.  Here are some quick Spring Cleaning Shortcuts from REAL SIMPLE https://www.realsimple.com/home-organizing/cleaning/spring-cleaning-shortcuts/spring-cleaning-shortcuts-intro

 

1114-588x352LOUNGE. Take some time each day to just lounge. Have a special spot outside, in a hammock or lounge chair and read, take in some sun, watch your children play, breathe in fresh air, or just watch the clouds.

 

originalEXPLORE. Take some time to get out and explore places you have never been. Maybe there is a garden you have never been to, a hike you have always wanted to do, a scenic road you have wanted to take…begin to try finding somewhere to explore.

 

Enjoy SPRING!! HAPPY SPRING!!