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Before I tell you my story, I thought it would be good to first….talk about ..Freedom…..what exactly is freedom???

For the purposes of my story….the following aptly applies….

The ability to act freely: a state in which somebody is able to act and live as he or she chooses, without being subject to any undue restraints or restrictions…

To be released from captivity or slavery: release or rescue from being physically bound, or from being confined, enslaved, captured, or imprisoned…

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         It occurred on Monday morning…I was enjoying a solo paddle on the lake…and…..as I looked ahead I could see a  rock jutting out of the water…So as not to hit it I touched it with my paddle.  To my surprise….it was not a rock but instead….a turtle…floating.  It was not moving…was he dead?…or was he just hurt…. and so with my paddle, I lifted him onto the front of my kayak.   I immediately  noticed the fishing line…. coming from it’s mouth….and it turned out the other end of the line was attached to the shore of the lake..   Poor little turtle …I’ll call him Mike…all I could think was that  he got caught on the line/hook…. and had been floating out there with no food days…so I did the only thing I could…..SET HIM FREE !!!   I know the turtle Mike,  was dead… but at least now… he could float freely into the reeds along the shore  . I was a bit sad for the little creature…but it felt good that morning to give him his freedom.

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Hope is the state which promotes the belief

in a good outcome related to

events and circumstances in one’s life..

Think about it for a minute….unconciously we are all… hoping…hoping everyday…all the time without even thinking….. hoping that it will be sunny…hoping that we get to work on time…hoping the traffic  light does not turn red….hoping  you will  receive an email from a friend….and the list could go on and on.  We hope all the time.

        There are of course… times when hoping is what helps us to get through a tough day or a difficult time and is more conscious thought.

   It is at those moments  when having hope is what gets us through the day.

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Hope, like the gleaming taper’s light,

adorns and cheers our way;

and still, as darker grows the night,

Emits a brighter ray. 

   [Oliver Goldsmith]

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Now… I am the first to say that, by just hoping ,we cannot  make sure a good outcome to occur…however…it can sure make you feel better…more positive about the possible future…

So if all of this is true…why would we ever,ever want to…TAKE AWAY ANOTHER PERSON’S HOPE?

Oh no..!!!!!  Makes me wonder.. have I ever taken away someone’s hope??

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SMILE ???

It takes four muscles to smile,

20 to frown.

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Make someone smile today.

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Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; however you are the one who gets burned.

– Buddha

Anger…who of us has never been angry??…Is it true that holding on to that anger …can  cause pain and possibly leave scars??…So I got  to wondering about anger and pain….If this is true then…does  that mean… the angrier a person is the more pain they will inflict upon themselves and the worse the scars will be???

When a person looks at anger as a hot coal…it makes one wonder…why would a person ever want to be angry???…Why would a person want to cause themselves pain…pain that they do not …HAVE…to endure???

But …you are now saying to yourself…but how does a person not get angry??…We all get angry at times…right???…And we all have times that someone or something just riles us up…I bet we have all had times when we were holding onto that hot coal of anger …with intentions of tossing it at someone…and before we even could…the coal/anger had already burned us.

Think about it…what if a person was angry for a very long time???…Would that mean that the pain would last for much longer as well??…And if that is so…wouldn’t it make sense to drop the hot coal…the anger…as soon as possible???…Wouldn’t  it be smart to …not even pick up the hot coal to begin with???….Would anyone …knowingly …consider doing such a thing??

So…you have to wonder…why do we allow ourselves to become angry???….Can anything good …actually come out of such emotions…reactions??…I am sure we have all known at least one person….who seems to be  angry ??…people who are carrying hot coals around with them…all the time… I wonder if they have any idea how that is affecting them…Could it be that the longer a person carries around a hot coal…he begins not to even feel it anymore???…I would hate to think that anyone would actually enjoy holding a hot coal…would they????

Now…this all has me wondering about anger and me…am I carrying any hot coals around at the moment???…And if so…How long have I been carrying them around with me???…I  have some serious thinking to do…and probably a few coals that need to be  dropped…I will think about this next time I feel anger building up…and next time I hope I can be smart enough to ….not  even pick up the  that hot coal…Maybe  the picture  at the start of my post will be a good visual reminder.

What about you….are you lugging around any hot coals ??? Coals you might be wanting to drop??

I once read that when you feel anger beginning to build up…just even for a few seconds…mentally…find and go to your happy place…it might just help let the anger disappear…. POOF!!!..It is worth a try.

 

My book Sam’s Weird Afternoon is presently in …

The New Covey Book Cover Award….contest.

Kurt Jones  of  Tate Publishing…was the brilliant illustrator  I worked with ..to develop Sam and the cover of Sam’s Weird Afternoon….. I was so very happy when we finalized what Sam would look like…and the cover came out better than I expected…I think it is very colorful and  eye catching…I hope you do too!

My  hope is that with enough votes from all of you ….my book cover might just be a winner for April !!!

Just click on the link below …go to entry # 14…and vote.

http://thenewcoveycoverawards.blogspot.com/

Voting will take place from April 1- 15th.

Sam…Kurt and I….thank you all in advance for your support and I will let you know what the results are after the 15th.

Thanks to all of you who voted …Sally and I are very excited about this…..Sam

When I first read this quote……it reminded me of the old song….Love the one you’re with….then…without warning… all of a sudden the quote….necessity is the mother of invention…popped into my my head.

Do what you can …with what you have... .has long been my mantra…even my husband will attest to that…It drives him crazy when he sees me doing just that!!! ..Who needs to go find the  jar opener when you have a spoon right in front of you?…or… How about the  lowly little butter knife… that can be easily transformed into a screw driver when required…I remember how my mom would transform a simple white tissue and a hair pin…into a hat for me to wear in church… on days that I forgot my Sunday bonnet…

For centuries …mankind has been doing what they can with what they have …If you don’t own a jar opener …and you need to get it opened…you will find a way….you will figure it out…Isn’t that kind of thinking….that  separates us from the other species???

I thought about this as I watched the news today…as I looked at the footage of the thousands of Japanese who have lost their homes…and everything they owned…people who are most likely…finding out how inventive they really can be….at a time when they have no choice but …to do what they can…with what they have…where they now are.

I think back to the years when I didn’t own a screw driver…and then I think about now…Today …I have access to a multitude of them…red, yellow and black handled…straight,phillips and square headed ones…Is my life better or is it just different?…All I can say is that…now…I spend more time in trying to find…the correct  screwdriver for the job…I will admit that my butter knives are in much better shape these days… and that screw heads no longer get chewed up…which seems to make my husband much happier.

It seems the less a person owns…the more creative they must be…with what they have...out of necessity most likely…So that makes me wonder about people who have lots?…The people with the jar openers and the multiple head screw drivers??…How creative do they have to be?…I wonder about me…am I less creative now…or just ….creative in different ways?..hmmm…something to ponder???

So yes… I will continue to….do what I can with what I have...The only difference is that…these days…I happen to …have more .

And now….here are a few pics of … doing what you can, with what you have..where you are…..

Sometimes you just have to do…what you have to do !!!

As I was reading the weekend paper this morning…and after I finished it…there were two things that …for some reason…remained in my thoughts.

Number One..There were  many articles about Charlie Sheen and his antics…his being fired from Two and a half Men…and yammerings about his lifestyle… I must admit…I love Two and a Half Men…and part of the reason it that it always makes me laugh…and…because I like the idea of a character playing himself…which I believe Charlie does…and that I find…so refreshing in some strange way.

Number Two…Luck…I noticed and remembered someone saying  something about luck in an article…it read…

“You have to go out and make your own luck.”

Now that got me thinking all about luck…the dictionary states it like this…. The chance happening of fortunate or adverse events; fortune.. Good fortune or prosperity; success… one’s personal fate or lot.

    So now I am wondering about luck…Can a person make their own luck??…or is a person destined …to have …or… not have…luck!!!…If it is possible to make our own luck….and if we only knew how…we could all be lucky…right???…Or…are we all… lucky at times in our lives…however…we just don’t see it…Could it be …if we looked at life differently…we would realize…we ALL have luck in our lives??

    It seems that we all know people who are luckier than others…and then there are…the others who never seem to get a brake…Are their lives really much different…or…could it be …they deal with  their lives differently???

    For instance…two different people… fall down a staircase…As they both lay at the bottom of the stairs with a broken leg…one person looks up and thinks …how lucky that only one leg hurts…it could have been worse…the second person looks up and thinks…#$#%##$#…why do these things happen to me !!!#$#$#…Same event…different ways to look at it…one feels lucky..the other not!!!…could that be the difference between being lucky and unlucky??… Does a person’s reaction to their life…cause them to not only feel lucky or not…but also to look lucky or unlucky to outsiders???

    Doesn’t that make you wonder …how do people see you???….Are you lucky…or not???…

    How much does ….fate and chance….really have to do with the luck in your life??

     

    I’d stand in line for Confession with old people and little kids, and as the line moved up, I knew when I got into the box that I would lie! Again!
    Mercedes McCambridge

    Wow…does that ever bring back memories….and so I wonder….Are  confessions really good for the soul???…
    Hmmm….I remember when I was just a kid… growing  up Catholic…confession was a regular occurrence for me…. I was so worried that I might forget…some  terrible sin …I had made over the past week…that… …to cover for that…I too …would always end with confessing … I lied!!!…
    Looking back…I remember  I always said that …just in case I might have forgotten a little sin…What little sin I didn’t really know…I thought I was being so very smart in those days…and I never did tell anyone…till years later… And  now I learn that … I was not alone in my cleverness…as Mercedes McCambridge…did the same thing…ahh..great minds….

    Anyway….I will admit that..in those days…confession  WAS ,,,good for my soul..you see..I was always relieved after confession…..I think just the act of  doing it …was penance enough to last me for years…To this day I wonder…was that priest was ever really listening .
    However…Here I am… decades later…wondering if Confessing is still good for the soul…good for my soul??…and so…I thought …why not try an experiment….here goes……Millions of people watch TV …and…millions of them watch lots….and …millions of them lie about it all the time…not wanting to be judged because of it….Well..I will confess….I am here to say…I love TV…yes…I have said it…I love TV !!!…. I love watching my TV….I love getting to know all those characters in the shows…I love seeing places I have been to on my T.V….I love reality shows  and police shows….I love …Two and a half Men…C.S.I….Hawaii 5 O…Law and Order and more….
    Whew….that wasn’t so bad….Yes…I actually think….that was good for my soul…

    Talking about T.V….got me thinking…Last night I …as I was watching  my T.V….I thought  about  some of the weird …unreal …stuff …we watch…stuff  they keep putting  into shows…..stuff that in real life…just would not happen…thing like…
    • when someone is driving, looks away from the road…at a passenger..not for a second…not for 5 seconds…but for 10 seconds or more…and doesn’t get into an accident!!
    • chases…when let’s say the police are running after a criminal…for blocks….jumping over walls…and rolling over cars…and no one is out of breath
    • then there is the squealing of tires at really inappropriate times…like when a car is slowly taking off.
    • when someone wants to sneak up on someone but they keep the headlights on or loudly shut doors
    • when female actors  go to bed and wake up with all their makeup on

    And the best one is …the one that I keep seeing over and over again is….

    • C.S.I…How each time they are at a crime scene…with those little flashlights…looking for evidence …and they find the one little hair or the one fingerprint which cracks the case..

    I always wonder how… any home could be so immaculate… that only DNA from the night/day of the crime….would be the only debris  there….I sure hope that  a C.S.I crew…never has to come to my home…I am afraid that if they had to search myhouse…they would find a weeks worth of “stuff” to bag…and the case would never get solved!!!

    Ok now…what do these unreal TV things have to do with confession….Nothing…However…I wonder how you feel about confession…would it be good for YOUR soul???…Is it possible that the more a person divulges about themsleves…the more freeing it can become???….If a person had no secrets…if a person’s life were like an open book…or…clear as a sparkling glass window….would it be freeing????

    I went to a birthday party the other night…did not know what to bring…

    my friend …Vicki …was turning 5o..

    and so…I bought 50 beautiful rocks…put them in a fancy bag …yes…it was a bit heavy…with a note..

    You should know that….5o ROCKS !!!

    Then … strangely… I found these on the web….

    and thought to myself…synchronicity or serendipity??…

    and I just had to share the photos with you….

    you can see more on the link below…

     

    http://www.justabovesunset.com/200902/html/stone_clouds.html

    Copyright © 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010 – Alan M. Pavlik …rock art photos site

    By the way…60 rocks also!!!

    Today I really thought about …being creative…yes…creative I said !!!….February is …I love to read month…and…I was thrilled to receive an  invite to ..Minawasta..a local elementary school…..to read Sam’s Weird Afternoon…However…it became a bit challenging today…5 different classrooms came to sit and listen…I was having so much fun…however…I was actually boring myself…It was the same thing over and over…listening exercise…story…help with a new story I am writing…and so…I tried to change it up a bit…get creative.

    Now I must be clear…I read the book to each class as if it was the very first group I had read it to…which was fun…It was the rest of the presentation that needed something…and so…thanks to …Fred Penner and his song…Sandwiches Are Beautiful…I decided to make a song to go with my book…I hope he doesn’t mind….I just took his song and changed the words to go like this…

    My shoes are beautiful…my shoes are fine.

    I like my shoes…I wear them all the time.

    I wear them in the winter and I wear them in the fall.

    If I had  a hundred pairs of shoes…

    I think I’d wear them all.


     

     

    To my surprise…the kids…whom …I must say… were wonderful listeners…were …even better  singers!!!…That little addition to each presentation…made all the difference…for me anyway. I still have 4 more classes in Minnewasta Elementary…to present to…but with more activities…I am now ready for more classes.

    Ahhh…the life of a published writer…fun but tiring…Hmmm…what exactly happened ???…I thought I had retired with lots  of…freedom…no demands…sleeping in late…right???…WRONG!!  …..but I wouldn’t change a thing….It is easy to forget what fun kids can be…how they can make you laugh..laugh…and laugh again!!!…Now how bad can that be???

     

    Your  regularly scheduled program (blog)…will be off the air for a few days…you will notice a lack of postings over  the next while…but have no fear…as…I will be back!!! …very soon…I am not gone for good by any means…

    The true test of character is not how much we know how to do,but how we behave when we don’t know what to do.
    John Holt

    Character…let’s first be clear on what character …in this sense …really is….The combination of qualities or features that distinguishes one person, group, or thing from another…..A distinguishing feature or attribute, as of an individual, group, or category. …Moral or ethical strength….A description of a person’s attributes, traits, or abilities reputation.

    How much do you … really…know how to do…and how  much do you not???…When  moments occur…the moments when you don’t know what to do…the moments that are difficult/new/stressful/emotional….how do you behave???…When all that knowledge and ability you have learned…is of no help …how do you handle yourself ???….Are these the moments we are given..the small opportunities that appear when we can...rise to the occasion…to step up to the plate…to do the right thing…and is it at those moments that…. we  show our  true character???…Do you know how much  character/moral and ethical strength you display????..

    There are always moments in everyone’s life when…we find ourselves in “new territory”…in a place we have never been before…and although we may have years of experience and oodles of wisdom…we find ourselves lost!!…Sometimes we muddle through…other  times… we discover something new in ourselves…or…at still other times….we find that  we fail miserably….How about the times when you can’t think of the right thing to say at that moment…but…realizing after the fact…what you should have said????…How often have you fumbled??

    Take for example …….pregnancy…death…sickness…divorce…of  someone we know…How do we handle those MOMENTS???…What do we do and say when we next see that person????…and…do we go and see them…or do our best to avoid it all????….I remember after being diagnosed with Breast Cancer…I was very fortunate ….to have the opportunity to observe…how family/friends/acquaintances…and even strangers… handled the news and how they behaved …It all made  me wonder …what have I done to others in the past…how have I behaved???…have I risen to the occasions???…or…Have I failed miserably …in their eyes???…What kind of character have I displayed in my life???

    Life is quite interesting in that…we remember how others have behaved toward us…at those difficult moments…but…do we have any idea of how we behaved toward others???…Will we ever know what effect our behavior has had on others????….What kind of character have we displayed through the years???…

    I wonder…if  we had the ability to get feedback …at times  when… we don’t know what to do…how would we fare???…How about you…how would you fare???….Maybe we do get feedback….but just choose not to see it….Could it be that ‘those moments” are so very difficult…very emotional…very stressful…that we are not able to read the other person…and the  feedback they are giving ….the feedback that although we don’t hear them say it in words…if we look…we can see it in their eyes??

    Do you think it is true…. that a person’s heart is in the right place…most of the time…and…that everyone’s aim it to develop a strong …good character???…Is it possible that when a person appears to have a flaw in their character…they just …Don’t know what to do???…and fumbling…they truly do the very best that they know how…at that moment in time???

    So…what do you do when you don’t know what to do???

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    Another most expensive item…a gold plated coffin…now…who said “You can’t take it with you???”


    “Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak.

    Courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen.” 

    — Sir Winston Churchill

    Courage….ever think about it….you and courage???….Is it having the strength to stand up and speak???…or…Is it being strong enough to sit down and listen???…..Or…is courage having the knowledge….to know WHEN to stand or  when to sit???…Is such courage something that we learn or something we are born with???…Is courage something we can all aspire to…or…is it something alludes us???

    It all makes me wonder …if there was some kind of meter…a meter that could measure….this courage…A meter that  could measure…not how often you speak up or sit and listen…but rather…the success of those moments you do so…the appropriateness of them…A meter that could measure the times you …courageously fought your impulses…and instead…showed  your courage…showed your ability to control   actions and not let them control you….If we had such a meter…10 being the most courageous…1 being the least….how would you fare???…a 3… 5…or are you a  9???….Is it possible for anyone to be a 10??

    There are times when our emotions cause us to be impulsive…to make wrong decisions…to make situations worse and more difficult…They are the times when we act before we think….when we don’t have all the information…when courage is the very last thing in our minds….when our focus is off…our perspective is all wrong…It is at those times that our meter…if we had one…would register much closer to zero!!

    So next time you go to say something in a moment of  emotion…consider… should you  STAND/SPEAK…or…. SIT/LISTEN…and think about that meter and where you would like it to read….zero or ten????  …How courageous can  you be????

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    Another most expensive_______________________-

    A golden Monopoly board…

    Are you wondering …who are those little men in the picture??? … Look at them closely and you will see…they are all made out of ice…in the process of melting a bit…I loved them and so wanted to share.

    I am waiting for some items from my publisher this week…a week of extremely cold days and nights…but I am having some fun with the temps…If the cold weather is getting you down…try one  of these …

    1. Boil some water…put some in a mug…go outside and toss the water in the air and watch…
    2. Try taking a rag…dipping it in boiling water…laying it as flat on the ground as possible…leave it for an hour…later go out and peel it off the ground….hold it in your hands and hit it against something hard…a number of times and see what happens…
    3. Needing a hammer????….put a banana outside on the ground for a few hours….when solid…have a piece of wood and nail ready…take the banana and hammer…voila!!!
    4. This is my favorite…got some bubble blowing stuff laying around from the summer…take it outside…and blow …it must be on a day when it is not windy and the temps are – 20 Celsius or colder

    OK now…for those of you who hate this bitter cold…I hope I have given you some fun…easy things to try…Get the  gang outside at your next dinner party…or …when the kids get bored and you want them to have some fresh air…pull out one of these ideas!!!….They are actually so simple but quite amazing…and I am sorry if your live where it is warm…you will have to find your own fun.

    I have decided to polish a few of my other Sam stories… I have been invited to read at local schools and I thought it might be fun to have some others to read as well….So…after I read my book for bookclub…Secret Sister…I will pull out my Sam stories.

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    Another most expensive item….a  Gold Ferrari.

    Yes…did you decide whether to make a resolution or not????….and…if you did…did you choose one yet???…or are you still sleeping on it???

    As for me…I have chosen a few actually…I thought about it a lot and decided on this one…I will go shopping…and buy one piece of clothing…at the start of each new month…Now how is that for an addition to my life….Maybe you shop all the time…but I don’t and it is about time….also….On New Year’s Eve my husband and I filled a box with a few of our bad habits we are willing to try to get rid of….tossed the box  into a fire …along with my Breast Cancer Radiation mold…out with the old…as they say….and…I will do my best …to keep these resolutions…and bring in the new.

    Have any of you heard of the 21 day theory????….What it states is that….if you do…or stop doing….something for 21 days…consecutively…it will then become a habit….If for some reason on day 19…you slip…you must begin all over again with day one….I will attest to the fact that I have tried it in the past…with teeny weeny things….and yes… it actually works!!!….how ever… the difficult part is reaching day 21…And so…I am on day 5 …with bad habits under control….and doing quite good so far…but…I will not begin to feel good until I wake up on Jan. 22…and… am able to look at my calendar with 21 x’s on it….and…with any hope…my bad habits will have skedaddled….for good!!!

    So…how about you…making any changes for 2011????

    Got to go…have not done my January clothes shopping yet!!!..Yikes!!! ….Hmm…will it be a shirt…pants…sweater…??? …Usually just finding something that fits is the biggest battle….so off I go to battle with  …debit card in hand…and the car gassed up.

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    Before I go…I will leave you with one picture.  My newest virtual collection will begin tomorrow……till then

    How is that for snapping a photo …at the most interesting time…now that could make a fun holiday photo!!!

    Another NEW YEAR…another beginning…another chance to make those resolutions…and with only two more days left…it is time to do some thinking on that.

    A New Year’s resolution is something that goes in one year and out the other.

    I wonder how many out there have even thought about it at all….I wonder if anyone has a wonderful…different resolution…they want to attempt to  try…attempt to be successful at…I think the trick is to decide on one you can actually do!!!…One that we can blend into our lives…one that will make us feel good…not bad…and one that will add to our life.

    Now of course we have all tried the …eat better…lose weight…exercise more…only to fail miserably at it…only to feel bad in a few months…Valiant attempts mean nothing  when it comes to New Year’s resolutions…So why do we keep doing it???…making resolutions that is???…Why do we keep trying and keep failing…and the next year…go and do the same thing???…I thought wisdom was supposed to come with age…so why then…with each new year…each year we are older… are we not wiser when it comes to resolutions???

    So now…it is time for a change…time to start a new year…not with the hope of keeping a resolution…but with the excitement of adding one to our lives…why not???…It seems that most resolutions we have made in the past ….consist of trying to NOT do something …such as no more candy bars….no more chips…no more procrastinating…no more ____….

    How about this year you add something little and concrete to your life…and make it easy and doable…like…getting a smile once a day (all you have to do is give one)…or…buy a new pair of socks once a month….or…buy someone’s coffee at Tim’s or Starbucks next time you are there…how about…have fresh flowers in the house regularly…or…once in a while when you decide to send an email/get on the phone instead…There are zillions of ideas…Yes some of mine involve spending a bit of money…but truly…aren’t we going to spend it somehow anyway???…so why not use it to make your ..and possibly …someone elses day…just a tiny bit  better????

    Ahhh resolutions…I am sure many of you are going…BAh humbug…no resolutions for me!!!….but…I would encourage you to think again…think about what you might be missing without one….consider that…this is not about changing…it is adding to your life…and now really…is it possible that your life is so perfect???

    And so…with two days left to ponder…I will do just that…and I am bound and determined to come up with that little addition to my life…Let’s see…in the past it was…buying only vine ripened tomatoes when grocery shopping…another year was…enjoy the quiet when driving in my Honda  (radio off)…and…giving a hug a day…..and I was able to do them all…to this day..Hmmm..so what will I add for 2011…I must brainstorm…

    5 days left till Christmas morning….only five…have you finished your shopping  yet???…will you be ready for the day???…Are you looking forward to the new year???….and …have you made a resolution at all for 2011???


    The past few years I have tried to make one that will add to my life..not make it more difficult. I was tired of making resolutions I would only keep for a few weeks…and so…some of my most recent were…to buy only the best (usually vine ripened) tomatoes…not to turn on the car radio unless I was going farther than 15km…to give my husband a hug a day…and for the most part…I ate delicious tomatoes all year, had many a wonderful quiet car ride, and gave and received many a hug…So…what now???…what can I add to my life this year???…I will get thinking on it.

    This holiday season seems…to be a strange one for people…decorations and trees have gone up later than normal…and in some cases…not even a tree this year…People are shopping later than usual…What has happened to that “Spirit of the Holidays??”” …could it be the weather???…or maybe it is family situations…or maybe holiday commercialism has taken it’s toll…No matter what …the day is almost upon us…and will be over in 5…yes I said!!!… FIVE days…and then we all go back to our normal lives…what ever that may be.

    Soooo……How much time does it take to do Christmas shopping?…

    I would bet there are many differing answers to that one…But it all comes down to ….when the big day comes…the shopping for Christmas is over..There have been years when I began my shopping in October…and I shopped and shopped and shopped…almost until the last day…It was

    fun…stressful…time consuming…and …expensive…How about you???….

    I had done a bit of shopping so far…this year…but today I designated the day as…SHOPPING DAY!!!!…and amazingly…I just about finished it all…This year it took less time…caused much less stress…I chose a theme to go by…and stuck with it for most everyone…which made my shopping decisions…so much easier… I think I will try this method again next year.

    And snow…I always hope for a beautiful fluffy snow fall on Christmas Eve…to blanket the neighborhood…with a beautiful clean white layer of snow….Not only does it give a “WHITE CHRISTMAS” feeling…but…gives us a new layer to ski on that day as well..Speaking of skiing…I went for my first xcountry sky yesterday…

    I really do love skiing…however….The first is always the hardest..and yesterday proved to be exactly that….Aside from the fact that …going uphill (tiny incline)…I fell backwards two times…smacked the back of my head on the snow…had my husband checking on me numerous times..asking how my head was…making me think about that actress who died after a fall while skiing…and…that today…with a sore neck…with thighs that feel like I just  spent 48 hours on the leg press at the gym… I keep reminding myself…Yes Sally…you really do love skiing…and…I know …that when I go to get up after writing this post…

    my legs will once again remind me..how much I LOVE TO SKI!!!!

    20 Days till Christmas morning…

    A roller coaster…ahhh yes…that describes my life as a children  book author…up one minute and down the next…turn to the right…turn to the left!!

    Book signing at McNally this Saturday was good…well….let me clarify that…it was very good…once the first hour was over…and by the time it was over…I realized…I had not done this in some time…NOT GOOD…as I had lost my momentum…I was off my game a bit…and…truth be told…I was even a bit intimidated that day…it was a bit of a difficult hill to ride.

    I suppose we all find ourselves having those days…days when our roller coaster is heading downhill….no matter how hard we try not to…Wouldn’t …… start moving up the hill again … be the goal…Going uphill would take much more effort than going down…in fact…going down takes no effort at all!!!….So finding the energy…and keeping your eyes on the up hill…would be in order.

    I suppose that…if on a roller coaster…one could find himself going downhill…in two ways….The first would be…coasting down with  eyes straight ahead…seeing where one is headed…and…inevitably…having a bit of  momentum to start-up the next hill…The second would be…heading down the hill backwards…not seeing where you are going… losing momentum as you go…Two ways to go down …and so…two ways to try to get back up…one being  much easier than the other.

    What goes up…must come down….right???…If that is so….It would be impossible to stay up…all the time….Wouldn’t gravity… at some point… prevail….however….is it possible that one might stay down…  find it impossible to get back up???….Is it possible that …one might  not be able to find enough energy to get back up the hill???….Can  gravity  become stronger than a person’s drive ???…Is it easier to go up  a  second…brand new hill…rather that having to … attempt to climb the same exact hill…you couldn’t get up the first time???

    It all makes me wonder…with all that hill climbing…wouldn’t it be nice if we got a bit of exercise out of it???…Oh..Oh!!!…maybe we do!!…Could it be that … climbing all those hills…exercises our minds…Think about it…Just like the person who hikes and climbs… the more they hike and climb…the the easier it gets???…Or is it that…it  does get easier… only because…they train for it???

    If so…is it possible to train for those roller coaster hills/rides … that make up our life???…Can we prepare ourselves to be more successful at getting up the   hills???…Is it possible that… at times…we can get on a roller coaster …that is too big???…One we have not trained for….one we are  not prepared  to ride???

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    Want to be creative with your gingerbread this year????…Here are some ideas.

     

     

    24 more days till Christmas morning……

    I’m singing in the SNOW…lots and lots of SNOW…and it is another good day…The key????….Walking in the morning with beautiful sparkly…white snow…everywhere!!!!  What a wonderful experience.

    Snow…think about it for a minute…for many of us it is a normal part of our winter…but…not for everyone…A number of years ago…I met a girl  who moved to Manitoba…from Paraguay…and was living through her first winter with snow…I will always remember her telling me …how amazed she was when she saw her first snowflakes fall from the sky…Why??? I asked…Her answer was …”I never knew snow fell from the sky…I always thought it came up from the ground”…and right then I couldn’t help but smile.

    I embrace emerging experience. I participate in discovery. I am a butterfly.
    I am not a butterfly collector. I want the experience of the butterfly.

    Goes to show how a bit of experience…can open your eyes…can teach you… enlighten you…It makes me wonder…how many misconceptions  we all have…possibly because of… lack of experience???…Just like the snow falling…It makes me wonder…how much misinformation…are we all storing in our mind’s files…and how much of that misinformation …can cause a person…to…deduct…or assume…other false info???

    If a person believes that…snow comes up from the ground…one might also suppose that…one  never has to clean off a car…and…the trees…the trees would never be beautifully snow covered…and drifts…would there be any snow drifts???…And if the snow comes up from the ground…would there be snowflakes???…and…how about driving visibility…it would always be pretty good…unless there was a very strong wind…right???

    Snow…yes snow… and a walk in it has again…been the key to a very good day…for me…So I think I will keep walking…and…on days when the snow flakes are falling…I hope it will remind me to…keep an open mind…always wonder or question…until I have experienced it myself.

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    Today I want to share with you some Christmas trees…If you haven’t the space or the money…these may be just what you are needing….

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