Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Rainy Days

This week in the Northeastern United States we are expecting several successive rainy days. I am thankful that I can choose to curl up with a warm cup of coffee or tea and dream while I listen to the rain hitting the window.

Dreaming is important. Day dreaming, for no purpose other than to escape, can be a form of meditation. Intentional dreaming, a phrase coined by Michael Gerber, is a dream for the purpose of discovering yourself and your purpose here on earth. That's my favorite dream!

I am grateful for Michael Gerber's way of reaching into my soul. I am grateful for the rainy days that some find annoying because they offer a great opportunity for introspection. I am grateful that I have a warm place from which to listen to the rain. And I appreciate a few minutes of quiet solitude.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

The Little Gifts

Last week, during my weekly trip to the grocery store, I met a couple in the parking lot as they scooted past me in the parking lot. We smiled at each other as they passed me on their way into the store.

I grabbed a cart and headed through the produce section, down the dairy isle and up the next isle. As I rounded the corner, I came to a halt. There, in front of me stood the couple. The man and woman both had their own carts which carried their canes and a few grocery items. They were rolling down the isle together, side by side.

There isn't much room to go around a double wide grocery cart convoy. I called out, "Oh, I see. You are paying me back for blocking your path in the parking lot!"

They both turned around and saw me standing there. We shared smiles once again. We joked back and forth a moment. Then, the magic began. As we made small talk, I learned that the man is a commercial artist with his own business. He does celluloid drawings for each of his children's and grandchildren's birthdays which are placed on the cake for the celebration and easily removed to cut the cake. These celluloids are treasured by each family member and stored for future pleasure.

One daughter shares a birthday with me. Although days apart, we were both born the same month and year. The couple, after learning of this coincidence, adopted me into their family. Right there in the grocery store!

We periodically bumped into each other as we meandered through the remaining isles. As I finished paying for my groceries, I spied them in the card isle and went to say goodbye. They were conspiring about the next birthday cake design as they gathered ideas from the cards before them.

We hugged and smiled and parted ways, remarking how wonderful it would be if we chanced a meeting in the future.

That special encountered occurred on my birthday. It was the best gift I received this year.

God Bless, George and Rhea. Thank you for making my day magical and special.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Celebration

It occurs to me that gratitude is a celebration of all that is in our lives. The good, the sad, the difficult, etc. Each thing in our life is there for a reason. Each things brings a lesson.

What can be learned from heart ache? It may be how to love unconditionally or how to love ourselves. Maybe it's how to give to others.

What about struggle? What can be learned from expending energy on surviving? We may have the opportunity to learn that we are not in complete control over anything in our lives. It may be that we are focusing on what isn't there instead of what IS there.

When we are in gratitude, we see things to be grateful for all around us. Once we get over feeling silly about being grateful for a cricket complaining in the basement, we can be grateful that the cricket's sonmetimes annoying sound alerted us to a leaking pipe.

I invite you to celebrate each event that you encounter today. Every horn honking, every unforseen problem and yes, even all of the people around you that you don't yet understand.

Francis Lucille said,
"Everything is created from moment to moment, always new. Like fireworks, this universe is a celebration and you are the spectator contemplating the eternal Fourth of July of your absolute splendor."

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Illumination

I am working on my motto for 2009 and I am playing with "The Year of Illumination".

My wish is to notice, collect, create and appreciate moments of light: those times when someone around me or further out in the world shows others how to find light in moments of darkness.

Recently, a mother and daughter in Texas were looking for a way to give a gift beyond all costs. A gift that didn't cost a thing but that would touch someone's heart in a very special way. Several days ago, they decided what they would give. They set out to the Hair Warehouse and both donated their locks of hair to a charity that provides wigs to ill children.

The first stream of light has been seen before the holidays arrive. Rose and Sydney, I am grateful for the love and inspiration you are spreading. I am off to find an idea of my own!