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it was all ready for us to eat a fancy dinner

Never Satisfied

Creative Commons LicensePhoto credit: bradleygee

I get really upset seeing my friends who are mums crying because they feel like they’re not good enough. Clever, confident, kind young women all going, “I’m ruining my child’s life.”

— Daisy Donovan

Why is it that we always want the gift that someone else received?

I’m not talking about birthday or Christmas presents.  I’m talking about the talents with which we have been blessed.  There are so many talents that we see in someone else that we want.  It seems that we’re never satisfied.

What made me think of this is an essay, The Juice Box Mom, posted on This I Believe .  In it, Candance Gordon writes: Continue reading » Never Satisfied

Arigato from Japan Earthquake Victims

The Gifts We Take for Granted

If the only prayer you ever say in your entire life is “thank you,” it will be enough.

— Meister Eckhart

Tomorrow, what would you do if the only people and things that showed up in your life were those for which you’d been grateful?

What would be left?

Who would still be around?

Would you still have that job you hate so much?

What about the yappy dog… or the noisy kids from across the street… or your car that sounds like it’s on its last legs?

How would you feel without the Continue reading » The Gifts We Take for Granted

whitney valentine bathing suit

Enjoy Your Valentines’ Day

Creative Commons LicensePhoto credit: karen horton
What? No Valentines on your agenda for this holiday?

Well, why not?  Even if you don’t expect to see a Valentines’ card in your mailbox, what’s stopping you from wishing a “Happy Valentine’s Day!” to every person you see?  Share your wealth…

A bell is no bell ’til you ring it,
A song is no song ’til you sing it,
And love in your heart
Wasn’t put there to stay –
Love isn’t love
’Til you give it away.

— Oscar Hammerstein
the Sound of Music

Planning to hole up in the house today?  Then send out an email greeting to those you count as friends or family or loved ones.  Spread a wee bit of good cheer… Aw, come on – you’re not really a Continue reading » Enjoy Your Valentines’ Day

Watercolor Christmas tree

Under the Tree – What Gifts Will You Find?

Creative Commons LicensePhoto credit:
Will there be the gift of play?

It might be easy to run away to a monastery, away from the commercialization, the hectic hustle, the demanding family responsibilities of Christmas-time. Then we would have a holy Christmas. But we would forget the lesson that we who are followers of Jesus do not run from the secular; rather we try to transform it. It is our mission to make holy the secular aspects of Christmas just as the early Christians baptized the Christmas tree. And we do this by being holy people — kind, patient, generous, loving, laughing people — no matter how maddening is the Christmas rush…

— Fr. Andrew Greeley
Woman’s Day 12-22-81

Despite my reluctance to join the ranks of those who have merchandized the spirit right out of Christmas I am raising my voice in praise of toys.  Yes, TOYS!  I am of the not-so-humble opinion that toys are a secular aspect of Christmas that we should run toward… and, in childlike fascination, we should revel in the creativity and imaginative play that toys engender.

Surely all Gods people like to play…

— John Muir

BTW – you Facebook-ers – have you helped assure that one more needy child will receive a very special Christmas gift because of your daily efforts?  ABC7 reports 50,000 clicks to their Spark of Love Toy Drive but their goal is 70,000!  Help them get there by December 23 – every day your click contributes $1 and helps buy one more playful toy for a needy child:


“Like” ABC7 on Facebook and a $1 donation goes to the Spark of Love Toy Drive, thanks to our partners! (From now to Dec. 23)

See – there are some good things you can do even if YOU are one of the harried and hurried.

Ok, back to toys and transformation… In keeping with today’s techno-savvy world, a very playful social media maven created a clever telling of the Nativity Story – click on the link and then HOLD ON TIGHT for a Digital telling of the Christmas story – brought to you via the techno-toys of today’s generation: Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google, Wikipedia, Google Maps, GMail, Foursquare, Amazon… and by reader Xelliott123’s 11 year old, techno-savvy granddaughter! Continue reading » Under the Tree – What Gifts Will You Find?

Helping Hand

Embracing the Gift of a Helping Hand

Creative Commons LicensePhoto credit: Dylan Parker
Do you find it hard to accept help when it’s offered?  I do.

Receiving – the ability to fully accept gifts and enjoy and appreciate being given to – is an essential part of the human relationship equation. It is the complement of giving and just as important.

— Melissa McCreery

As I bask in the sweetness of the photo above, I realize that there is something very touching about how this little-girl-in-blue bestows her quiet trust upon the protective grown-up who walks beside her.  She’s obviously not entangled in the terrible two’s, the “ME do it” stage in life!

Ah!  If – only us grumps – that would be “grown-ups” – could so easily accept help when Continue reading » Embracing the Gift of a Helping Hand