Sitting in the backyard, on the patio, counting my many blessings. I'm not talking about the material blessings, although they are there. The blessings I'm thanking God for is the sunshine warming my body in the middle of November. The wind chimes making a delightful symphony of music, as the wind gently rocks them. The sound of a plane's twin engine at a far off distance in the background. A butterfly that nature has painted a beautiful shade of burnt orange, with tiny black specks, dashing from flower to flower. Fluffy white clouds floating against a peaceful blue sky. Me, enjoying the sweet fragrance of lavender as it prepares it's bed for winter.
My blessings are the fact that I have the ability to see these things, to hear, to smell, to feel and to know that God is still in control so all is right with the world.
None of us are born knowing everything. We had to learn everything we know, little by little. As a baby we had to learn how to crawl before we could walk. We had to learn how to use a spoon to eat. We had to learn how to tie our shoe laces, ride a bicycle and so forth. Our first attempts at doing all of these things may have led to frustration but we didn't give up. We fell down but we got up. Over and over we tried at tying those laces and finally we figured it out. We kept trying and when we succeeded we were somewhat astonished but very proud of our triumphs.
Now as adults, some of us have lost that ability to see things through to the end. The first time we attempt something that we've always wanted to do and have a problem with it we give up. We look at the people around us who had success with the same thing we tried and think they are smarter or have more talent. We think we will never be like them. When in reality, most of those people were not born with that talent. They had to learn and it took hard work, patience and perseverance. You will never hear them utter the words "I can't".
If you should ever find yourself giving up on your dreams, think again, one last time. Take a deep breath. Remember that old inspirational story of The Little Engine That Could. Try one last time with a different approach. Find out if there is another avenue you can use. Research and read all you can on the subject. You may find something that will give you a better understanding. Take baby steps. Climb the ladder one rung at a time and don't look down. Eventually, you will realize how far you'll come. You will find that you have reached the top. You will be a star!
A year has passed, I had a birthday a couple of months ago and a new decade is staring me in the face. True reflections and changes I need to make in my life don't start in January. I've found that if I'm honest with myself and want to make a serious impact; the new year starts with my birthday.
The truth of the matter is that I don't celebrate for just one day. I celebrate the whole month. Don't get me wrong, I'm not whopping it up going from party to party, toasting myself nor am I eating cake. Most of that time is spent looking back over the past year. Looking at what's been happening in my life and seeing what changes I need to make. I like to think of think of it as a business plan for my life. Things that didn't work for me, I let go and put my focus on the things that add value.
When I revamp and make these positive changes I feel energized. Then its time to put that new energy to work. To celebrate me. To try new things. To do stuff I've always wanted to do. Go places. Meet new people. And, in the process hope that I've become a better person and learned a thing or two.
This Spring I think I'll open a restaurant. It will not be like any restaurant you've ever seen. I'll serve up the finest of foods. All plant based of course, with such delightful dishes that even the most finicky eater will relish with pure joy. There will never be a dish left unfinished. This will be a restaurant that appeals to only a select few and only that select few will be allowed entry. Dinner will be refused to those who don't meet certain requirements. It's a restaurant for snails and slugs, you see.
It has occurred to me that all the flowers and some of the vegetables & fruits I have growing in my garden are the favorite foods of snails and slugs. They seem to share my taste in horticulture choices. I know they must be thanking me profusely for planting such a wide variety of treats. And, a nice place for them to come dine each night.
The first course that I'll be serving early in the season is a wonderful little appetizer that I call Lettuce. The next delightful dish will be the juicy and sweet Strawberry. Then I'll provide them with the succulent foliage of the Hostas and the tender purple flower of the Iris. Later in the year I pamper them with delicate dishes of Daylily, Dahlias, and Marigold. Maybe I'll add a side dish of Cabbage and Gerber Daisy for dessert. I have been told that whatever I do, I should not decorate the restaurant with any type of copper, crushed "eggshell art" or coffee grinds. Nor under under circumstances should I serve them beer. They are especially attracted to that drink and have been known to get drunk and drown in it. And, we wouldn't want that to happen, would we?
If you've never been to Starbucks I have a few tips for you before you go. You don't want to get on line and not know what you're doing. There is a special language that Starbucks customers use and the cashiers expect you to use this language in order to keep the line moving. There is a rack in the store with pamphlets explaining the different drinks and how to order but who has time to read this while you're standing in line. I guess they expect you to take it home to study and then come back when you've decided on your drink. It's so much easier if someone explains it to you before hand.
My first order at Starbucks was just a coffee because I didn't know what else to order. The people in front of me were ordering things like Caramel Macchiato, Skinny Cinnamon Dolce Latte and Green Tea Frappuccino-hold the cream. What the heck were those and what do they taste like anyway? When my turn came, I timidly asked for a small coffee with cream and sugar. The cashier (barista, as I've since learned) promptly informed me that the small was referred to as "tall". When my coffee came it was black, no sugar, I complained and was told that the cream & sugar were at the "fixings" bar near the door. Oh, what an embarrassing moment. Everybody now knew I was a Starbucks virgin and didn't really belong. What a smug look I got from the next person who loudly ordered the Venti Vanilla Latte. I thought to myself, "latte to you too", and walked on over to the fixings bar. The coffee was actually really good and I knew I'd be coming back for one of the more fancier drinks eventually. Then I'd order myself a Venti Chai Latte just like a Starbucks pro, but will refuse to look down my nose at the novice.
Okay, so here are those basic tips to get you started. First there are three cup sizes. The "tall" which is 12 fl oz, the "grande" holds 16 fl. oz and the "venti" hot drinks are 20 fl. oz while the venti cold drinks are 24 fl oz. You tell them what size you want. Then there is the matter of which coffee, tea or other drink you want. You can always order coffee but the fancier coffee drinks are macchiato, expresso, cappuccino, lattes, and various teas, tea lattes and hot chocolate. The cold drinks are the frappuccino coffee and non- coffee drinks, frappuccino non coffee drinks are blended with cream, fruits, vanilla or green tea. You can then customize your drink by having it made with soy or skim milk, having them add protein or fiber powder and flavored syrup. They can add a double shot of expresso, hold the cream or make it "skinny" by using sugar-free syrup. These are a few things that will help with your ordering but please, please remember there is that fixings bar that has the sugar, cream, milk, cinnamon, stirrers, napkins and sometimes powdered vanilla. So get out there and treat yourself to a fancy drink. If I happen to see you there, I'll treat you to one.
Okay, enough is enough! I'm back! For the past few weeks I have been in a constant work mode. First it was the Thanksgiving festivities, then Christmas, Kwanzaa and the backlog of soap orders from regular customers. The work just kept coming and coming. Then the horror of all horrors, not a thought in my head to write about. Not even one tiny Christmas story came to mind, even though I was drowning in Christmas preparations for weeks. Well, that's the way it goes sometimes.
What did I do about it? I just took time out to regroup and connect with my poetic side. And how did I do that? Well wonder of all wonders I went visiting in the Poets Woods! Yes, my good people, there is such a place. We actually found this place while traveling and site seeing in Cape May New Jersey. It's located across the road from a small residential community and is a successful attempt to keep the area free for birds, butterflies and small animals to take refuge. While walking in this natural habitat I almost forgot there was a busy highway only a mile or so away. The only noise I could hear was the joyful song of a few birds who refused to move South for the Winter and the crunch of dead leaves and small tree branches as I walked. It was peaceful and a great place to unwind.
You won't find it on any map nor can you Google it. And I'm sure that's the way the neighbors want it. For now, I think it's enough for them to be able to cross the road and take a leisurely stroll. And just maybe share it with an unsuspecting traveler like me.
A friend sent me this and it's too good not to share it with you, think about it.
The Beauty of Mathematics and the Love of God!
The math part is good,but the end is even better.
Beauty of Mathematics!!!!!!!
1 x 8 + 1= 9 12 x 8 + 2= 98 123 x 8 + 3= 987 1234 x 8 + 4= 9876 12345 x 8 + 5= 98765 123456 x 8 + 6= 987654 1234567 x 8 + 7= 9876543 12345678 x 8 + 8= 98765432 123456789 x 8 + 9= 987654321
1 x 9 + 2 = 11 12 x 9 + 3 = 111 123 x 9 + 4 = 1111 1234 x 9 + 5 = 11111 12345 x 9 + 6 = 111111 123456 x 9 + 7 = 1111111 1234567 x 9 + 8 = 11111111 12345678 x 9 + 9 = 111111111 123456789 x 9 +10= 1111111111
9 x 9 + 7 = 88 98 x 9 + 6 = 888 987 x 9 + 5 = 8888 9876 x 9 + 4 = 88888 98765 x 9 + 3 = 888888 987654 x 9 + 2 = 8888888 9876543 x 9 + 1 = 88888888 98765432 x 9 + 0 = 888888888
Brilliant, isn't it?
And look at this symmetry:
1 x 1 = 1 11 x 11 = 121 111 x 111 = 12321 1111 x 1111 = 1234321 11111 x 11111 = 123454321 111111 x 111111 = 12345654321 1111111 x 1111111 = 1234567654321 11111111 x 11111111 = 123456787654321 111111111 x 111111111 = 12345678987654321
Now, take a look at this...
From a strictly mathematical viewpoint:
What Equals 100%?
What does it mean to give MORE than 100%?
Ever wonder about those people who say they are giving more than 100%?
We have all been in situations where someone wants you to
GIVE OVER 100%...
How about ACHIEVING 101%?
What equals 100%in life?
Here's a little mathematical formula that might help answer these questions:
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z