Unwritten

108219220“Today is where your book begins
The rest is still unwritten”
~ Natasha Bedingfield

As we look across the threshold of another New Year’s Eve, we look ahead with promise.

Each of us hopes that what’s on the other side is better, somehow, than the year we leave behind.  The good news is that it most certainly can be…with some measures we each must take in order to make it so.

If we continue down our path doing the same things we did yesterday, then tomorrow will bear an incredible similarity to yesterday.  If we want change WE must change.  Never rely on others to cause change in your life – they are too busy with their own lives to have the focus you have.

Sit down today, before the clock strikes midnight, and write down 5 goals for yourself in the new year.  They can be as simple as cleaning out the basement and donating what you no longer need to something as tough as losing 50 pounds.  You choose.

Once you have your list, put it someplace you’ll see it every morning.  Create a list of the smaller steps you’ll need to achieve bigger things. Allow yourself the time to work on your list.  Good things take time.

Just as we hear in the song, ‘Unwritten’ we each are staring at the blank page before us. Allow the light inside which will show you the best path to follow as you pursue your goals.

No one says it better than she does so please watch her video…it’s inspiring!

Happy New Year, friends.  All the best as you write on the pages of 2014!

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Being Grateful

200177193-003Christmas Eve was a snowy night.  The kind of snow where you can only faintly make out the tail lights of the guy just ahead.  Snowglobe snow.

This was our first Christmas since we sold our home and we are now renting a townhouse.  It was a little sad but our son was with us and that made it better.  We decided to look for an open restaurant, which was no simple task.  Red Robin was open.

We knew upon arrival that they were sorely understaffed for the night.  Maybe it was the weather, maybe it was just a perfect storm, but we could see the frazzled faces of the servers and knew it had been a hard night for them.

Our server was awesome.  Amid the chaos, he was friendly and helpful and just really kind.

The food took a while but we were in no hurry and the snow outside gave us a show to watch.  It was lovely.

We were nearly done when we heard a rumble from the table behind us – it was a multi-generational group.  It looked to be a family with very young children all the way up to a great-grandpa.  How nice.

However, soon their grumbles grew into rudeness and it was all directed at the server. Nothing he could do for them was enough.  He met every bit of rudeness with kindness, probably knowing all the while that there was no tip to be had.  Then they grumbled for the manager.  The insults came out like a musical round.  It looked praticed. All the while their children were watching.

As we left, we handed our server an extra tip.  Hoped it helped make the night a little easier. We also spoke to the manager on our way out and thanked him for being open, that we appreciated it.  He looked near tears, I know I was. You see, the previous year was very slow so they were only allowed three servers for the night.  Between a rush of people and an influx of take out orders, they were blindsided.  We wished each other a Merry Christmas and we went on our way into the snowy night.

Our actions matter.  Our words can either build or tear down – our choice.

But for that Christmas Eve night when nothing else was open, we were appreciative that they had given up their time with family to serve us. It’s much better to go through life with a grateful heart than a complaining heart.  Better all the way around.

Pinterest – King of Rabbit Trails

WeCanPinItPosterI found Pinterest when it was the new kid on the block.  I asked for an invitation to join (back when you had to be invited) and soon realized that it is the king of rabbit trails.

“I just need to find a recipe really quickly, this will only take a second.”  Two hours later…lots of cute animals, lovely rooms, great shoes…still no recipe.

If you haven’t yet ventured into the realm of Pinterest there are a few things you should know:

  • Pinterest is a way for you to keep all those things you find on the internet (which you’d like to remember) in one place.
  • “Pins” are lovely little bookmarks which you place upon a board.
  • “Boards” are collections of pins related to a topic.
  • As you find a website you like or an item you want to re-visit, you “pin” it to a “board” which you have created.  For example:  “10 carat diamond rings” would be pinned to the board entitled, “If he loves me, he’ll buy this for me”.
  • You may “follow” people you know so you can see their pins/boards.  You may also follow people you don’t know who seems to like the same things as you do.
  • Pinterest will give you a lot of ideas but there is a price…your time.  As you search for one item, you will soon find dozens of others you had no idea you  needed to see.

Some of the best boards on Pinterest are called “Pinterest Fails:  I nailed it”.  They are the result of attempts at pins which didn’t turn out exactly as planned.  Here are a few examples:

A cute cake for a children’s party…

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Some lovely Christmas cookies to share…

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A beautiful photograph of your beloved child…

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As you can see, sweet dreams are made of Pinterest but results may vary.

It’s a fun site to explore and a great “idea” hatchery.  So if you don’t succeed in every attempt, you still receive an “A” for effort.  Pin away!

‘Splitting’ Image

splitportraitI love this picture beyond words.

Ulric Collette is a Quebec-based photographer.  His series entitled Genetic Portraits is one in which he splits family members’ faces in two and then uses Photoshop to create one new image.  This image is of his mother (age 61) and his daughter (age 12).  People have always told them that they look alike – now it is proven.

Is there someone in your family that you’ve been told you look like?  Perhaps one of your children is the spitting image of your younger self.  We have a photo of our son, Danny, that looks so much like my husband that people can’t believe their eyes.

I love the way genetics work on this level.  To able to get a glimpse of your younger or older self is a treat (in most cases).  Sometimes I look at photographs of my beloved grandma and I see myself.  She’s been gone for quite a while but this makes me feel a bit closer to her.  Below are pictures of each of us at the same age.  Always makes me smile.

Grandma and Me

I urge you to visit Collette’s website to see more – the ones with twins are especially interesting. I’m so glad he chose to undertake this project – it’s a good one.

Ulrich Collette Genetic Portraits

Which Doctor?

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“What is all the hubbub, bub?”  “What’s all this “Doctor Who” nonsense I keep hearing about?” “Wibbly Wobbly Timey Wimey.”

If this makes no sense to you, I understand.  If you don’t know who The Doctor is yet, I also understand.  If you don’t want to learn the story of a time travelling time lord who goes about the universe in a TARDIS which is disguised as a Police Box…I don’t understand.

As far back as I can recall, I’ve loved science fiction.  Perhaps Star Trek started it all, perhaps it was The Jetsons…who knows?  Regardless, I love it.  I love to read it, I love to watch it on television, I love the movies about it – obsessed.

I guess this is a good thing since my four sons have followed suit – this gives us plenty to talk about and share.  It also causes disagreements such as, “Which Doctor was the best one?” (the tenth).

Doctor Who is a series which originated in England.  It first aired in 1963 and just celebrated the show’s 50th anniversary.  It’s quite brilliant in it’s simplicity (the Doctor travels through time and space so there are no constraints as to where he can go), when one actor vacates the role, the Doctor regenerates and comes out the other side with a new face.  The Doctors are beloved all over the world.  The latest doctor, Matt Smith, had his last episode air on Christmas Day this year.  Over 8 million people watched as he left and Peter Capaldi took his place.

tardis2

Just to let you know what is so great about this show (the writing) I wanted to share a few pearls of wisdom  from Doctor Who:

  • “The universe is big. It’s vast and complicated and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles.”
  • “When you’re a kid, they tell you it’s all… Grow up, get a job, get married, get a house, have a kid, and that’s it. But the truth is, the world is so much stranger than that. It’s so much darker. And so much madder. And so much better.”
  • “Some people live more in 20 years than others do in 80. It’s not the time that matters, it’s the person.”
  • “In 900 years of time and space, I’ve never met anyone who wasn’t important”
  • “There’s a lot of things you need to get across this universe. Warp drive… wormhole refractors…You know the thing you need most of all? You need a hand to hold.”
  • “We’re all stories, in the end. Just make it a good one, eh?”
  • “You don’t just give up. You don’t just let things happen. You make a stand! You say no! You have the guts to do what’s right, even when everyone else just runs away.”

If you have Netflix, you have Dr. Who.  If you have BBC or BBCAmerica, you have Dr. Who.  Watch it.  You’ll love it.

And…you’ll never look at bow ties or screwdrivers in the same way again.

For The Purpose of Cuddling

o-DOMINIC-COMFORT-PIT-BULL-570Once upon a time there was a pit bull that nobody wanted. You may wonder why that’s unusual so I’ll ask you to continue reading.

Dominic was one of a litter of 7-week-old puppies that had been taken by police during a drug raid on a home.  I’m guessing his life, and the lives of his siblings, would not have been so great had the raid had not have happened.

Dominic ended up at the Denkai Community Veterinary Clinic, in Greeley, Colorado, which rescues domestic and farm animals.  Dominic decided he had a job to do – he would be the resident cuddler. He went against all the stereotypes assigned to pit bulls and decided to show the world just how wrong it could be.

One of the vet techs named Stephany Haswell adopted Dominic. As she worked around the veterinary office, Dominic was there too and wanted to follow her as dogs are wont to do.  As the animals came out of surgery, it was not uncommon for them to be wild, even aggressive, and bites were common.  That is until they gave Dominic a big, red pillow. As the animals went into surgery, Dominic would sit outside the door until they came out to recover – it was at that point the animal would be placed on the pillow and Dominic would cuddle with them to help them relax.  It worked.

Dominic the pitbull

Dominic doesn’t just cuddle animals, he cuddles people as well.  He found his purpose in life at an early age, if only we all could say the same.

It’s wonderful how we can learn so much from our pets…if they can take a miserable situation and turn it into a blessing…why can’t we do the same?

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Yule Log

6a00d83451ff1869e2017ee62c481d970d-300wiIt’s a silly Christmas tradition, I realize this.

On most cable and satellite systems on Christmas Day, you can find a virtual fireplace…it’s called “Yule Log”.

It’s in the background of most of our Christmas Days photos and has become like a member of the family.  You know, that relative that sits to the side and doesn’t say much…er, anything.

Most “Yule Logs” are accompanied by classic Christmas music, an added bonus, and they run the whole day.

If you’ve never watched “Yule Log,” I urge you to look for it now – your family and friends will marvel over it.  If not, they’ll probably make jokes and that’s okay too.  Laughter is, as Martha Stewart often says, “A good thing”.

So a very Merry Christmas to you and yours and may your home be blessed with love and laughter on this day.

And may Yule Log brighten your time together.

And now, for your entertainment pleasure…