January 2007


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Living my own overseas adventure in Berlin, Germany.

Live What You Love
notes from an unusual life

By Bob and Melinda Blanchard

This book is incredibly inspiring for those who are trying to create their own dreams. This is their second book. Their first, “A Trip to the Beach” detailed their journey of moving to the caribbean island of Anguilla and their adventure of opening a restaurant on the island. Both books are honest, humerous, inviting and inspiring for those who dream of creating their own way to move away from the ordinary, to a dream of having a life that is fulfilling and satisfying.

This is a quote from “Live What You Love”

Drawing from experience, we’ve identified four checkpoints in life that help us connect our dreams with reality. We affectionately call these checkpoints the Big 4: PASSION, PEOPLE, ENVIRONMENT, AND MONEY, and like the pistons in your car engine, they should all be in proper working order and running smoothly. We’ve always tried to live our life guided by our passions, surrounded by people we love and living in places we enjoy. We try not to put more emphasis on any one of the Big 4 -they are all important – although we feel strongly that money should always come last. Money’s primary function is to make the other three possible.

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My favorite temple in Bali, Indonesia. The women are carrying offerings to the Temple.
There are days and moments that remind me to be grateful for the good in my life. Today held one of those moments. When I’m feeling the most peace I can truly appreciate the great things about my life. Like so many others I can get caught up in the hassles and drama of life and forget how truly good my life is, and how much I have to be thankful for. Today I was reminded just how fortunate I am and how many blessings I have.

It wasn’t a day much different than any other Sunday. I woke up, had breakfast and went to church. The sun was shining and I felt happy. Yet something about the church service today touched my heart and made me realize in that hour just how fortunate I am and how much I have to be grateful for. Today I felt even more connected to the love and energy of my church, to the nurturing environment I find there. Reverend DJ reminded me with her message to be grateful for my blessings and the good in my life. She reminded each of us to carry what we feel and share on Sunday through our week.

She’s right, the love and the spiritual connection and the gift of our church is something that we hold within our hearts and by holding that love, energy and intention through the week we allow others to be touched with the love and grace we are feeling. It is my wish to remember that as I make my way through the week. I will imagine others touched by the ripple of love, energy and grace that everyone feels when we are there sharing in our Sunday service. May you find yourself touched by love, healing and grace this week.

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A photo of a famous angel picture taken on the cruise ship Miracle.

Today I looked up the definition of the word Harmony.
According to the online sources I found, harmony is defined as the following; an accord, an agreement, harmonious relations, a pleasing arrangement of parts. Compatibility in opinion and action.

For the last year I’ve been attending a wonderful Metaphysical Church called Harmony. This church has become a special part of my life. I find Harmony to be a deeply loving and spiritual environment in which to grow and share. I find myself deeply grateful for what I’ve found and experienced there. I had to smile as I looked at all the definitions of harmony. They were concise defintions of the word, but the church I’ve found is so much more and on this day I am especially grateful for Rev. DJ and all the wonderful people at Harmony Metaphysical Church.

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Canoe and children picture taken on the Big Island of Hawaii.
Beach shot Kailua Beach, Oahu, Hawaii.

Whenever I am feeling in need of tranquility I think back to moments I’ve experienced while living on islands in the Pacific. Guam sunsets at Tahiti Rama’s…sadly now long gone from Tumon Bay. Where tables graced the sand and your feet could feel the softness of the sand while you enjoyed a drink with a lover or friend.

Oahu, Hawaii, where I loved driving along the North Shore in the winter months when the beaches were closed to all but the very best or insane ….surfers. Along with many others I would sit on the sand, mesmerized by the huge waves and the skill of those surfing the dangerous waves. I find a sense of peace in the magnitude and strength of the ocean. It reminds me that my struggles and problems are just one small part of a whole and to work at taking a larger view of the struggle I may be facing. (I could certainly use that bit of my own advice today…..laughter.) There is something special about islands, they touch me with their magic and their beauty. May these pictures bring each of you a sense of the beauty, tranquility and peace I found there. Treasure your day!

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Grandma at her 80th Birthday party

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The view of the lake today.

Today is one of those gorgeous Florida days that remind me why I live here. The sun is shining, and it is truly a gorgeous view looking out at the lake. Just a few minutes ago a hawk landed next to the patio and surprised me. He’s been a regular visitor these last weeks, appearing at least once a week to sit on my arbor or in the nearby tree. Thankfully I haven’t seen him catch any small birds, that’s certainly a blessing in my eyes….lol

This week I have a deeper appreciation for this view, the sunshine and the 55 degree temps we have today. Last week I spent visiting relatives in the midwest, freezing my behind off and looking out at grey, overcast, cold days. It was seriously depressing for a woman that loves the ocean, the sun and the pelicans! I did have an overall good visit with family and friends. Yes there are always those less than enjoyable moments with those we are related too. I’m certain everyone can relate. They are relatives, that means we didn’t choose them, we just deal with them for our entire existence!

Mostly it was a great week culminated with a surprise 80th birthday party for my grandma. To add to the day we had my great grandmother there whose now 100 years old. It’s pretty amazing and special in my eyes to even have a living relative that is 100, let alone one who is capable of attending a special occasion! Of course she spent some number of years being a real pain in the behind to assorted relatives, so maybe her extra spunk has paid off and kept her going so well. She’s become a sweet, good hearted woman as she’s aged and it added a wonderful dimension to my grandmother’s day to have her mother there on her own 80th birthday.

Some days I struggle with individual relationships in my life. To help myself in these dark moments I try to consistently look to what I’ve learned through my losses. I strive to create healing in my life and in my interactions with those I love.

Like many others I face relationships that challenge me or frustrate me. I’m not unique in this feeling. One thing I’ve discovered with years of healing is that some of these relationship issues have almost nothing to do with my intention but more to do with how another perceives the relationship or situation and just how much effort they are willing to match to bring a peaceful compromise.

Recently I saw two people whom I haven’t seen in several years; people with whom I’ve had many ups and downs. Despite my very best intentions and attitude I felt AGAIN like I was hitting a brick wall. Thankfully I’ve learned through my years of healing that most times these moments, these struggles are less about me, and more about the individual themselves. I walked away from the moment with some unresolved frustration but a deep realization that I’ve done the best I can with the circumstances and I have to allow God to handle this and move on in my own life. I can’t make every situation what I’d like it to be, none of us can. It doesn’t change the outcome, yet it changes my perception of the pain and leaves me a small sense of peace knowing I did what I could with healing intentions.

There is a song I love by Wynonna Judd called, ” I Want to Know What Love Is.”

In this song she talks about the fact that she has faced heartache and pain and that she has to take a little time, that she doesn’t know if she can handle any more pain in her life. I think each of us who grieves a loved one understands that feeling. In the song she is talking about relationships, yet if you listen to the words you can easily see that the words can also express what a grieving person is feeling.

When we lose some one we love we don’t want to think of ever feeling such a pain again. We also begin to focus more on creating loving relationships with those remaining in our life, and to create a peace in our hearts. This song inspires me and touches my heart with it’s honesty. I hope it will touch yours as well.

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