We begin the final week of November 2019. This week will be highlighted by American Thanksgiving on Thursday. Love and blessings to all who celebrate it and to everyone else as well. As we mosey on into December, a potpourri of thoughts flood my mind. There are the more serious, reflective thoughts as the year comes to a close. Then there are the playful, whimsical thoughts that are elicited by upcoming holidays.
Where am I going with this? Nowhere in particular. I’m just inviting you to come along with me on a little stream of consciousness journey. I’ll start with November. Have you noticed what a drab, dreary month November can be? There doesn’t seem to be an abundance of sun. The weather can be dank, chilly and maybe that ‘S’ word making an appearance. On the upside are the wonderful aromas of cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, allspice coming from baked goods and mulled drinks; hot roasted chestnuts, wood fires. Cornucopias of freshly harvested fruits, nuts, vegetables along with family gatherings.
Between the Thanksgiving celebrations in North America and upcoming December holidays, gratitude is the underlying theme. As we begin to put that bow on 2019, we might begin to reflect back on the year that has been. Sure it is good to acknowledge things that we could have done better or differently, but it is also of great value to acknowledge that which went well. What are those positives that we can carry forward into the new year? How can we build on those things and have more of them? To me, those are the big questions to focus on.
December is a melange of mirth, merriment, kindness, benevolence, good will, reaching out to those in need, for example. They are qualities that are really meant for the entire year, not to be saved up and let out only in one month.
Something that comes to the forefront for me is based on story telling. In the recent past I’ve written several short stories about the adventures and shenanigans of Santa’s elves for my grandkids. They have grown a little beyond those Tales From The North Pole, but I am inclined to create another story or two just for the fun of it. While the stories were primarily about elf high jinks, there was always a lesson or moral embedded in each one. Hmmmm. Maybe I’ll write one for you. We’ll see.
Speaking of morals. There are two morals to this weeks ramblings.
One: Wait not for one special day to celebrate when every day can be celebrated as special.
Two: There are 3 amigos we might like to invite as permanent dinner guests - goodness, generosity of spirit and lightness of heart.
Comments are welcomed.
My right brain is still struggling a bit getting the creative juices going. Therefore, I must refer back to my pal, Dr. Seuss when he said how nonsense wakes up the brain cells. Let’s go with some of that nonsense. Let’s have some smiles, maybe some groans, to hopefully brighten up our day. Following is a list of funny bone ticklers.. (Thank you, Steven Wright) Enjoy.
I intend to live forever—so far, so good.
I used to work for a factory that made hydrants, but you couldn’t park anywhere near the place.
I went to the bank and asked to borrow a cup of money. They said, "What for?" I said, "I'm going to buy some sugar."
How do you tell when you're out of invisible ink?
Everyone has a photographic memory. Some just don't have film.
I spilled spot remover on my dog. Now he's gone.
If at first you don't succeed, then skydiving definitely isn't for you.
Talk is cheap. Until you hire a lawyer.
Take my advice — I'm not using it.
Sure, I'd love to help you out … now, which way did you come in?
Did you ever stop to think and forget to start again?
The sign said "eight items or less.” So I changed my name to Les.
42.7 percent of all statistics are made up on the spot.
Cross country skiing is great if you live in a small country.
Someone told me half of all car accidents happen within a mile of your house. So I moved.
You can't have everything. Where would you put it?
Comments are welcomed.
As I’ve alluded to in some recent blogs, I’ve had an injury which has kept me at home 24/7 for several weeks. Lots of pain has been an unwanted companion. Those of you who are or were in similar situations may have observed that motivation, creativity and inspiration go on holidays. Nevertheless, I’ve wanted to continue my self-imposed challenge to post a blog every week. Ideas for content have been sorely missing. What is one to do? Consult Prof Google, of course. I scoured a few hundred suggested blog topics. None of them sparked any interest. Besides, I thought, there is very little under the sun that you can’t read about on the internet. Where do I go from here?
I went back to my nightmare years on the farm to see if there was something I haven’t shared. Before you could say Pate de Foie Gras, I realized the story of Ricky, Lucy, Fred and Ethel was still untold. Just to be clear they were not the cast of the 1950’s sitcom. No, indeed. They were 4 majestic, mean-spirited geese that patrolled our land like a commando unit. They hissed and honked and screeched whenever anyone came near. We sure didn’t need a watch dog or home alarm system with the fearsome foursome keeping vigil.
This high strung quartet did not have a lengthy stay with us. It was not due to a shortened life span. It was more about their on-going misadventures and shenanigans. Periodically, they would get loose from their pen and go charging down the hill beside the road. They'd be screeching and honking descending like the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse upon the neighbors’ gardens as veritable harbingers of doom. Personally, I found this quite entertaining. The neighbors whose gardens were being ravaged and plundered did not.
I always made myself scarce during the great escapes so I wouldn’t have to deal with the four fowl or foul four, depending how you regarded them. I found their antics a great source of comic relief during those trying times. I even thought they could have provided great fodder for new age nursery rhymes or cartoons. However, over the course of several months the honkers sorties caused great angst in the neighborhood. Fortunately, we found a farmer willing to have them take up residence on his farm where they lived out their remaining days. I look back fondly on the feisty four with smiles and affection. Here’s to you – Ricky, Lucy, Fred and Ethel. I hope you are honking happily in goose heaven.
Comments are welcomed.
It’s not about how high we jump or how fast we run. It’s about how we bounce. When people talk about resilience, they often refer to abouncing back. What if we looked at it as bouncing forward? How do we move forward from great adversity?
It happens when we recognize that we can be the heroes in our lives. It lies in our capacity to honor our suffering, respect our needs for self-care, and shape each day toward a more inspiring future.
Self-compassion is a big key. We need to acknowledge that we experience times of suffering and that suffering is a part of life. In those moments we need to be kind to ourselves. This does not mean wallowing. It is giving ourselves that compassion we would give to a friend or loved one.
Human beings are naturally resilient especially in the face of great challenges. Hope in those times of challenges means:
Former Vice President Joe Biden has experienced multiple losses in his life. He said what has kept him going was having a sense of purpose. Finding meaning and purpose for ourselves can keep us moving forward. Finding that sense of meaning and purpose can come from volunteering, helping others, being a role model for family members and friends. How we show up in the world can make adifference to someone without our realizing it.
Resilience is not only about navigating challenges in the present. It is also about how learning from past experiences helps us deal with unexpected situations in the future. It is about leveraging the good within us during easier times so that we move closer to a sense of thriving right now.
“There comes a time in your life, when you walk away from all the drama and people who create it. You surround yourself with people who make you laugh. Forget the bad and focus on the good. Love the people who treat you right, pray for the ones who do not. Life is too short to be anything but happy. Falling down is a part of life, getting back up is living.” – José N. Harris
Comments are welcomed.