Wednesday, June 29, 2011
- Be the most encouraging person you know
- Listen with your eyes
- Take the statement, "I don't have enough time" out of your vocabulary.
- Use the good dishes and light the candles. Drink the champagne you've been saving.
- Be forgiving and say you're sorry
- Return everything you borrow and consider things you loan out a gift
- Make a list of things you want to do...then start doing them
- Donate blood (my blood type is B positive!)
- Take lots of pictures and get in your own
- Dance more. Sing more. Really listen to music ('Music is what feelings sound like...')
- No more blaming others for where you are. Take responsibility for your life and let others take responsibility for theirs.
- Take "I'm tired" and "I don't feel good" out of your vocabulary (and PLEASE never tell someone else they look tired!)
- Remember people's birthdays
- Say please to everyone
- Exercise and drink water like it's going out of style
- Have a job that you love
- Get out of debt. It's not about making more money--it's about spending less.
- Lose the weight and be done with it. And stop talking about it (yes, I'm still working on this one!)
- Use people's names when you talk with them. Read name tags
- Don't top a friend's story with one of your own
- Be kind and give lots of compliments
- Be positive and enthusiastic
- Laugh out loud. Smile at people.
- Simplify your whole world by giving away (letting go of, selling, getting rid of) as much as you possibly can. Less is so much more.
- Be a hard worker and praise the work of others. (Then watch them smile!)
- Put the past behind you once and for all. Let go and move on
- Make it a goal to never complain. Ever again.
- Be truly happy for other people...and let them know!
- Your home is a reflection of your life--keep it clean, organized and in good repair
- Open the door for someone. Insist that someone go ahead of you in line. Tell the checker she looks nice today
- Say thank you. Be grateful
- Wear sunscreen. Take good care of yourself!
- Have a good attitude. Seek out the bright side
- Get up as early as necessary so that you never have to be in a hurry
- Enjoy every moment of now and stay curious about the future!
Tuesday, June 28, 2011
Sunday, June 26, 2011
Interestingly, this morning as I took a shower, the plug nowhere near the drain, I found myself ankle deep in water (in my own filth is what Allison would call it.) The water was NOT going down the drain--at all! I washed my hair and shaved my legs, enjoying the experiences as always and hoping that it would just start draining...No such luck. Again, I tried to figure out what to do, what was wrong, what was blocking the natural flow?! As the water reached my shins, I once again surrendered. And finished my shower.
It’s amazing the amount of inspiration I have been able to feel from these two experiences. I thought about bathtub analogies all day!
These situations are so much like life. (Mine anyway) There are things I want to get rid of and things that I want to keep. There are things that fill me up and things that drain me. (Sometimes it’s the same thing.) What messes up my life? I have got to find a way to get it to go away. What fills up my life? I have got to figure out a way to keep it in!
Funny how a situations can be totally opposite, yet help me with the same lessons: What can I actually control? And what is it that I can’t? Can I force things one way or another? Why do I want what I can't have...and vice versa? Then here's the obvious thought that sometimes my life is going down the drain...
But honestly, most of the time, my life simply overflows with JOY. The real key for me, no matter what the situation, is enjoying the moment and, of course, accomplishing a goal, despite the setbacks.
Life is a series of clearing out the bad stuff and finding a way to keep in all the goodness.
Of course, then there’s an analogy with the tub itself. Just like my life, it looks so dang good…always clean, always organized, big, beautiful, and shiny.
But it’s obviously in need of repair…
Perhaps it's just time for a little Draino and a call to the maintenance crew at my complex.
I know I know.
My analogy doesn’t hold water.
But today, it’s keeping me afloat.
Saturday, June 25, 2011
Went to my first (and quite possibly my last) Dodger game of the season last night. Two hours to get up there, a PAINFUL if not HORRIBLE game, and nearly two hours to get home.
Of course the 'in between' of that was a beautiful night at the ballpark--PICTURE PERFECT weather--a great big Corona in one hand and a Dodger Dog in the other--and a night sitting with my darling dad, Sweet Sunny and my high school friend, (and ultimate Dodger fan) Rosa.
All in all, I gotta admit...it was quite enjoyable...
Angels beat the Dodgers 8-3
Friday, June 24, 2011
Some people just go out and do it.
(When I grow up, I want to be just like Allison...)
Allison is heading back to Kenya this weekend!
To keep up with her travels and to find out why she loves it so much, check out her KenyaKenyaKenya blog (CLICK HERE) over the next few weeks...
Thursday, June 23, 2011
If nothing else, as much as I don't feel quite comfortable here, it has allowed me some much needed time to sit down.
I no longer have three stories and three bedrooms and two bathrooms to clean. (God knows I vacuum this entire place from one plug.) My patio here is about 1/4th of the size of the one at the other place, and (the biggest bummer for me,) I no longer have my two car garage, which, amazingly always gave me something to do! I can't tell you how many times I just went down there to rearranged those rhino racks and reorganized the work bench and clean out the rafters, one more time. I took many photographs of my fabulously organized garage. I LOVED it.
I have a carport now. And most of the things I rearranged all those many years have found their way to Goodwill or were sold, with much help from Craig and his ever-ready list of buyers.
Again, please know that I am not complaining, but today, right now, I kinda feel in a state of limbo. I know this is not where--or even HOW--I am supposed to be living. This is not the home that I once SO loved to decorate and fix up and have people over for dinner in. And this is not yet the home that I hope to so love and decorate and fix up and have people over for dinner in...
So why am I here?
Today, as I looked out on the (yes, I must admit, magnificent) view from my back window, I saw a hummingbird just sitting (ok, hovering) outside. I swear he was looking right at me through the window. Again, remember, I am on the third floor, so I am above most of the tops of the trees, just a few in the distance are a bit taller and there are certainly not any flowers up here. I have never seen a hummingbird outside that window before.
So why is this hummingbird here?
I sat down to read a bit and the bird showed up again. And then again! You know me, I figured it was a sign...so I did a little online research on hummingbirds...and realized exactly why the sweet little bird was there for me today.
It is a symbol for accomplishing that which seems impossible and will teach you how to find the miracle of joyful living from your own life circumstances.
Hummingbirds are considered to be symbols of
peace, love, happiness, resilience, perseverance and patience.
I'm doing quite a bit of writing again these days...even catching up on a whole lot of reading.
Maybe it's OK to live in a (temporary) state of unsureness. This place of not exactly knowing where I am to be or why I am here or where I will be a few months from now. Maybe, just maybe...I'm suppose to just be accepting of what is. For now. Perhaps I'm being reminded to live in a constant state of timeless joy--not in wishing for the past to be changed or in being too anxious about what the future holds. Maybe I'm supposed to enjoy and accept each day as it comes...and not ask so many damn questions.
As I am finishing this up, the bird appears at the window again! I swear he wants to come in. And I realize...he has. The room is full of love and happiness...and undeniable peace.
I am resilient, and full of joy...as always.
I just needed a little reminder.
Wednesday, June 22, 2011
- Breakfast with a friend (especially if it includes deep conversation...and bacon!)
- Playing my iPod on 'shuffle' and saying, "OH, I love this song!" with each song that plays.
- Someone saying, "Good Morning Beautiful!"
- Making someone truly laugh out loud (not LOL)
- The Dodgers winning THREE in a row!
- A personal, hand-written note in my US Mail Box.
- When someone says, "NO WAY do you have a 28 year old!"
- Being recognized and becoming a 'regular' somewhere.
- Clean Sheets
- Someone who totally GETS me!
- Having lunch outside...just me and "The Help"
- A new body scrub and lotion (Grapefruit!)
- Inside Jokes
- (Lots of) whipped cream on just about anything...
- A sweet text message
- An afternoon nap
- A $6 bouquet of Peonies from Trader Joes!
- A note on my desk
- Being with someone who knows and can quote movie dialogue!
- A French pedicure by Tu
- Making someone else's day
- A bubble bath in my huge tub
- Living in the "Smoke Free/Dog Free" building!
- An evening with NOTHING to do...just me and Vinnie...and "The Help"
- Realizing that EVERY day is the BEST day yet...
Tuesday, June 21, 2011
Monday, June 20, 2011
Sunday, June 19, 2011
I have the best Dad ever!
My sweet dad has been there for me...always!
At every softball game I ever played, every awards dinner, bowling tournaments, Blue Bird camp outs...my college graduation, the birth of my kids...and every single thing in between...and since!!
My dad has a hilarious sense of humor and an enviable desire to love and make people happy! He is also the root of both my passion for baseball and my dedicated work ethic! Having five daughters, I think my Dad was determined to make each of us "well-rounded." Taking us fishing and camping...teaching us how to to check our tires and add oil to our car. We all learned how to mow the lawn and to fix things around the house. He encouraged us to play softball...to run for class office....and to love Vin Scully. Obviously, there were no "boy things" and "girl things" in our family. There were just a whole lot of great things we did with our dad. I honestly think my sisters and I are all better people for that.
And, I gotta tell ya, to this day, a day at the ballgame with my dad is still my happiest place on earth. How lucky can a girl get?
Love you Pops!
Saturday, June 18, 2011
Thursday, June 16, 2011
Tuesday, June 14, 2011
And then, she just sat there.
She just sat there in her amazing web.
I'm so attracted to her patience and her ability to be so still.
Obviously very fragile, I knew the web wasn't going to last very long. Though I was careful as I watered the plants around it, there was no doubt that the wind or a slight rain would be enough to knock down the web, and that beautiful, hard-working spider.
Today, when I got home from work, she was gone. Remnants of the web were left hanging from the plants. And it made me kind of sad.
I wondered right away if she was sad. Or maybe angry? Was she upset that what she worked so hard to build was now gone? Was she crying in a corner thinking it was all over? Was she off somewhere brooding about how unfair life is?
No, she wasn't.
I glanced up to the back of my patio...and there she was...up in the corner of the roof...starting over. Working one step at a time, back and forth, back and forth.
Building a new masterpiece.
And tonight, she sits patiently, still and calm.
Inspiration from a spider.
“What you spend years building, someone could destroy overnight. Build anyway.”
Monday, June 13, 2011
Seriously, this is probably what I love most about my job.
One of my goals EVERY DAY is to say hello to Robert and remind him of what a GREAT day it is! Today, I spotted Robert as I came down the hall toward the cafeteria. I smiled and said, (over dramatically, I confess) "Good Afternoon Roberto!" He stopped what he was doing and just looked at me. So I stopped and looked right back.
He said, "Don't you ever have a bad day? Aren't you EVER mad or sad or pissed off or angry?" The thing is, he was kinda laughing and I could not stop smiling and was holding back giggles as he rattled off his questions to me. He finished up with, "Julie, what are you so happy about?"
The door was open. I have been hoping to put a smile on Robert's face for six years!
I said, "Today? Well, let's see...the Dodgers won and I just talked to my son, (then I realized I had started a little poem so I tried to get really funny)... my hair's in a bun, I don't weigh a ton, and I don't own a gun....(ok, at this point, he is laughing--out loud--and I want to keep going) work is real fun--we should go for a run!"
And ROBERT says, "Out in the sun??"
We were really laughing now--me and (raincloud) ROBERT! I was literally wiping tears from my face. (Laughing til you cry is the BEST laughter!)
I hugged a smiling Robert and, as I walked away, added the last line to our poem,
"My work here is done."