Monday, November 28, 2016

A Smile Shared With My Younger Self

A BLURRY picture of me when I was about six jumped out at me when going through a box of old photos. It was before anyone imagined digital and before I imagined how life would unfold. My sister painted over the picture when she was young to give it some colour. We are an artistic family, n'est–ce pas?

I thought about my younger self and how she created the story of her life through the choices she made and the smiles she gave. I thought about the faltering steps, new discoveries, happy and unhappy surprises, wasted worrying, successes and sometimes sad endings and rude awakenings. I thought about the times she postponed joy for some vague future when she wished all would be better. Beyond the dramatic chapters of challenges met and unmet, there are still fresh pages to paint in whatever mood she chooses.

Her older self picked up some lessons along the way from people like the Dalai Lama who said: "Worry does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow, it empties today of its strength." and from a Yiddish Proverb, "What soap is to the body, laughter is to the soul." Even actor Alan Alda had wisdom to share. "When people are laughing," he noted, "they’re generally not killing each other."

More smiles less worry is obviously a good thing ... as is channeling the wonder and bright expectations that endured within that little girl.

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Copyright by Penelope Puddlisms

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Dig In For What's Right

PARENTS BROUGHT their children to an orchard planting party at a community green space recently. It was a unique idea since, although community gardens are fairly common, local orchards are scarce nowadays.

The kids were having fun digging into the dirt while the parents were feeling good about teaching their children some important environmental values.

The young trees were spindly and bare and the shrubbery was rather tiny.

But we all knew that if planted right the foliage would bear good fruit one day.

Tree planting is a key to combating global warming and thoughtful parents wanted to set a good example for their children. They also no doubt taught them that bridges are better than walls and that kindness is better than bullying. So, on reflection, I don't know how to explain the results of the very long and agonizing American election. The protesters now marching peacefully have my respect because sometimes you just have to dig in and fight for what's right.

Read Here's Why We Grieve Today HERE.

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Copyright by Penelope Puddlisms

Friday, November 4, 2016

They Go Low, We Go High

HOW REFRESHING it was to look up and see rust coloured autumn leaves fluttering over the roof recently.

Although it's easy to feel low when mired in politics, a cotton candy pink sky put current events into broader perspective while a leaf, stuck on a branch, appeared ready to fly when the morning light shone through it.

Meanwhile, seemingly overnight, a plant gone to seed had burst into stars.

I don't think it's quite what Michelle Obama had in mind when she said, "When they go low, we go high." But it is uplifting to look beyond the noisy chatter into what nature does continuously without much fanfare every single day.

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Copyright by Penelope Puddlisms