Currently Browsing: Friendship
Mar 9, 2015
My friend Sandra, a photographer who resides in Vancouver and has a blog called Rainforest Cottage Salon, brought up an interesting thought in her recent newsletter (which is always really thoughtful and interesting). She pondered how much of our lives is in our control and how much of it is really due to luck?
She remarked,”It’s quite fashionable to imagine that we can control so much of our lives. I mean, that’s what drives a lot of the click bait on social media, right? The 10 ways to do this or the 20 ways to do that. Adopt the flavor of the month and you’ll lose weight, avoid cancer, make money, find a mate, sell your work. “
Yet how much of life’s ebb and flow is dependent on so much of the world’s workings and the ebb and flow of the unseen. It seems both of us have a specific memory of a line from a television production that stuck with us on this subject. She says years ago, she saw “a Masterpiece period piece called “Any Human Heart about the life of Logan Mountstuart in the early 20th century. At one point his father says to him, ‘enjoy good luck when it comes your way. It’s all luck in the end’ “
I had a similar Aha moment on this subject watching a show in 1991 called Parker Lewis Can’t Lose. The amazing actor Ray Watson of My Favorite Martian fame, played the wise janitor named Augie. I remember them being on the school’s rooftop at sunset and he offers,”You’re never down or up for too long before you’ll go the other way”. I have since tried to remember this when I am in the midst of a crisis. I always say, soon this will all be a nightmare.
Sandra concluded her thoughts by saying, “Things happen. Good luck comes our way. And that’ll end and there’ll be some bad luck too. Of course we have an impact on our lives – I can recall many times where I made good choices and some less than good choices and suffered the consequences. But there have been many times too when things have just happened. Good AND bad.
I can choose to rail against the bad luck. I can give myself all the credit for the good luck. Or how about this – why not just ride the wave, do our best and know that it’ll change again at some point. “
I am grateful for like-minded friends keeping me grounded and real. And I’m trying super hard to keep up perspective on what truly is happening at any given moment. And am going to try to hedge my bets for the Good Luck side as much as possible by giving the best of myself and my hardest most honest efforts to the world and my family . And be extremely wary of that which I really can’t control.
Nov 28, 2014
If it’s Black Friday, shopping locally is on my mind. Happily, my gal Pama’s shop Moonvine will be open for her second Christmas season on Harrison Street in Easton, Maryland across from the Tidewater Inn. And like last year, I plan to do some of my Christmas shopping here.
While visiting and gathering decorations for the Moroccan themed Christmas tree for Talbot Hospice last week, I took a massive amount of pictures so I could show you the magnitude of beautiful that is Moonvine. You should all be so lucky to have this sort of shop in your town. And if you live here, stop by and tell her I sent you.
Pama’s first love is Mermaids and they are everywhere.
She loves fairies too and you’ll find them tucked in every niche and adorning some lovely cards too.
Her mother Karen is a very talented artist and crafter and her work is everywhere you look.
The mosaic pieces done with vintage bits are fascinating and would be stars in a minimalistic house.
And the antiques strewn about the shop are also wonderful and many would make a styled shelf memorable.
Pama is an amazing floral designer and there are beautiful florals everywhere.
She also loves quality homemade soaps and there are more than a few lovely ones to choose from.
I absolutely flipped over the library collection candles with literary names like Jane Austin and Mark Twain packaged in copper tins, they are amazing smelling too. I detest Yankee candles and while I love love love Votivo, these are really nice.
Christmas ornaments are also a one gift hit and she’s got some lovely ones. Charming Little sea creatures and mermaids dangle everywhere.
You can even take a little Eastern Shore of Maryland with you with these amazingly real crabs and cute handmade oyster shell ornaments.
Plus … there’s the jewelry. Last year there was some fun pieces and this year, there’s plenty more. An entire case of vintage jewelry takes up one corner of the shop. And Fiona got to play with some dress up quality necklaces like she likes to do while I ran around and took my pictures.
Honestly, I was just in there and I could spend another uninterrupted hour fondling and smelling everything in the shop. A day trip here to Easton for a wander around and a nice lunch sounds like great fun before or after Christmas. Charm oozes from the cracks in the brick sidewalks here in Easton and Pama’s store is a jewel in its crown.
My post on Moonvine from July 2013 is here.
Moonvine is located at 21 A North Harrison Street in Easton, Maryland.
Visit their Facebook page here. And don’t hesitate to give her a call at 410-770-4451 for information or custom wreath requests.
Nov 17, 2014
Don’t stop me if I’ve told you this because I’m going somewhere different with it today. A thoughtful and somewhat sad place but I can’t stop thinking about it.
I started blogging with truly no clue about blogging. I did it because someone I knew said I should. I’d never really even read a blog. And I just began. What’s followed is a lot of blood, sweat , and tantrums.
I have stayed the course though and am glad I did because of the growth I have experienced both as a writer and as a human being who needed to prove my worth and the value of human connection. But you don’t get to enjoy the lessons unless you go the distance.
This can be a very solitary practice. So many sources of input vying for your attention that I feel lucky if anyone reads my blog. Please don’t feel bad that you don’t comment either. Those that can do. Purposes of entertainment are personal to everyone. And I can remember being reluctant to comment once too.
I have been online now long enough to see some of my fellow bloggers discontinue their blogging. One gal got a full-time job. Two just sort of stopped publishing posts and show up to “like” something every once in a while. But the one that upset me the most was a gal who I almost met this past Summer at the Blog U conference. She committed blog suicide.
I was just about to write a piece on how upset I was about her abrupt disappearance when Robin Williams took his life. And the death of this wonderful and beloved man seemed too tragic to even use the word suicide in any other context. But I do feel a kind of concern for this gal’s welfare and here’s why.
There’s a community here online and when you connect with people, they’re just like the people you know from your everyday life. Like your mail carrier or your bus driver. They make you happy when they chat with you. But then what if you heard them start to say that you were so pretty and that they could never consider themselves pretty. Or that you were smart and they just knew they were dumb. And then one day they were missing from their job permanently.
This gal praised me and I was so flattered but I felt that shift into implosion. Suggestions of unhappiness and unworthiness and anxiety. And then wham, she was missing. She had deleted her blog address and all of her social media outlets. I wanted to scream out, why? One of ours was gone. Many of us new bloggers have felt that wavering doubt of that first year of blogging. I understand low self-esteem so well. I comprehend comparing myself to other bloggers and writers (and designers) and feeling crappy about me. And I guess I am reminded again of how I love doing this and how tenuous our bonds with others really are.
So Jean, if you are still reading my blog, know that I heard your distress and felt absolutely powerless to help you. I did notice you go missing. I am not a more talented a blogger or writer or mother than you are. I hope that you and your children are well and looking forward to a happy holiday season. And that if you ever needed an ear or anything I have to give you, I am still here. Imprisoned in this box but also out in the world contributing my soul and gathering happiness anyway I can.
Nov 10, 2014
Some months, that gratitude basket is empty and some, my basket is overflowing. Maybe some of my thankfulness is relief from getting through my October’s gauntlet of events alive. But the gratefulness keeps rolling in. Grief comes too but it’s easier to handle when your heart’s got spare mirth.
In honor of all my recent gifts of spirit, I’m doing a five things list to start the week off. It wraps up my random events and thoughts like making the most fabulous stew from my life thought leftovers.
- On Saturday, I got to meet Jeanne. I began to follow her blog, Bees Knees Bungalow like three years ago after I began my blog. She is a garage sale guru who repaints and style her vintage finds so nicely. And I immediately knew, we were kindred spirits. She happened to be in Baltimore for a cruise with her mother throughout the Chesapeake Bay. Such a wonderful thing to meet up with a friend whom you’ve never met. And how amazing a gift to meet her and solidify the bond of our kindred spirits. Happy Birthday Lovely.
- Mark had a few employees over as an appreciation party on the same day. The fact that he’s been keeping his business going and it’s clientele is increasing is encouraging. He’s very good at what he does. His success is our success. He’s at that 3 year mark for On Your Mark Lighting. That’s the point when you decide whether to keep going or not.
- I finished painting Fiona’s room. No excuses, no prisoners. And now I get to actually decorate it! And since I’ve promised myself to create everyday, all those projects I will share with you soon. I am looking forward to them.
- My children are alive and so am I. Eamon got through his pneumonia and Fiona didn’t get it. And the husband took himself to a doctor in a timely fashion to get treated when his cold became instant infection. On my return drive from an appointment in Baltimore on Thursday in torrential downpours, I had a few scary hydroplaning moments on a major highway. This was the kind of trip where you are suddenly living in the moment until you make it home alive. I was never so happy to see my home and my un-napped daughter.
- My husband stepped up for me on a couple of occasions this week. He watched Fiona and I was able to do what I needed to do. And he discovered that he can take and handle her anywhere, even keep both children relatively happy simultaneously, and he got a chance to earn his own Daddy badge for himself. Competency can only be earned by practice. We both needed to allow for that.
I am busy thinking a lot about what I am doing right and what I’d like to change. And I ‘m so very happy to know that I have your company dear reader. You get the first dish always.
“Let the Good times Roll, Let them wash your rock and roll hair. Let the Good times Roll.” -The Cars-
Sep 5, 2014
I had one of those apples to oranges moments a couple of weeks ago and again last week. The one where I compared where I was to where I believed someone else was and then despaired over it. Compared my insides to someone else’s outsides. And it wasn’t just a moment, it lasted a couple of days. I sat with it willing it to wash over me.
There are many women writers and bloggers online I greatly admire. I feel honestly lucky to be able to read their writing and be moved by them. And in a wobbly moment, I found myself thinking, “I really can’t write like that. Not that well.” Which is partially true. I write the way I do and they the way they do and our writings are sometimes as good in different ways. But each of us is always the best person for the “being us” job.
Yeah, yeah, yeah. Until you get a rejection letter and those other people get published on Huffington Post the next day. Then, as you’re trying to be gracious and share and support them, they go and get published again. And they gush at how they can’t believe it. That’s when the girl with the new Barbie Dream House needs to go suck it.
Seems my definition of myself in my head is the girl who’ll never get the Barbie Dream House. I don’t drive the right pink sports car. I don’t hang out with the hip Kens. And even Skipper thinks I’m weird and shoves me towards those Bratz dolls. But this gal with the new Barbie Dream House who I’m trying so hard not to envy? She’s also the gal who would out herself in a snappy momentito for feeling begrudging of another’s success.
So I took my time and I let that possible resentment go into the cosmos. And I resigned myself to resubmit something else to Huff Post and something else again. Because her hard work and my hard work are commendable and the apples and the oranges might be fruit but there are many many different factors in having them flourish and be added to fruit salads all over the globe. Styles and editors and forces that be just need to have the antes upped.
And no one is begrudging me my Barbie Dream House but me.
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