Enjoying life's adventures in a secluded mountain cabin

Posts tagged ‘believe’

Quality vs Quantity

As y’all have probably already noticed, I’ve broken my promise to myself.  The one promise I made to myself to write something, anything, every single day for a year.  I’ve kept it up for a little over a month, and had I not started working outside the home, I probably could’ve stuck with it for the full 365 days.  Well, 366 since this is a leap year.  But, you know you’ve got a problem once something you love becomes a chore and you find yourself saying things like, “I haven’t written today”, or, “Ugggghhhh, I’ve gotta write before I go to bed”.

Truth  be told, the content and subject matter were suffering, too.  Some of them were only a couple of sentences strewn together simply to fulfill this promise to myself and they really weren’t the things that my soul wants to write about.  Sure, I was writing, but honestly, some of it was just flat and boring and looking back on some of it, I can’t believe I lowered my standards so much just to fill a self-imposed quota.  Needless to say, I’m still disappointed in myself.  I’m better than that.  I may not be the world’s greatest writer, but I know I’m better than some of the garbage that I posted last month.

So, the promise to write something, anything, every single day is out.  Just like most of the New Year’s resolutions that were made around the same time, I’m abandoning an original, extremely good, wildly optimistic idea and I’m embracing a new way of thinking when it comes to my one true creative outlet.  I’m gonna write when the mood strikes me and only when it’s something I feel passionately about, or something that interests me, or something that makes me smile, or makes my heart sing, or touches my soul in such a profound way that my very existence will be forever altered due to my soul-stirring.

Sadly, for some of you, that could be the color I decide to paint my toes on a particular day.  BUT, it’ll still be good because I’ll be giving 110% instead of the bare minimum.

Samuel Johnson said it best…

“What is written without effort is in general read without pleasure.”

I couldn’t agree more.

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My Little Purple Book

I am a collector.  I don’t have shelves that hold my treasures and my walls aren’t covered with masterfully done works of art.  I don’t have rows of clothes hanging in my closet, nor do I have shelves of shoes.  I don’t have a variety of handbags and I always wear the same three earrings, never-changing them for any reason.  And yes, you read that right.  Three earrings.  Not two.  Not four.  Three.  I don’t have drawers or bags of make-up and I don’t have umpteen bottles of hair products.

But, as I said, I am a collector.

I’m a collector of words.  If I could afford it, I’d have a hard back copy of every one of my favorite novels ever published.  I’d have rows and rows of books on everything from cooking to painting to fixing anything.  I’d love to one day have my own little library in my home, complete with the little sliding ladder to reach whatever would be stored on the top shelves.  But, besides books, I collect words.  I collect other people’s words and I keep my collection in a little velvet covered purple book.

I’ve been jotting down quotes for about ten years now.  Anytime I see or hear something that pulls at my heart-strings, or appeals to my psychotic counterpart that dwells deep within, or beckons that little kid that I still am at heart, I write it down.  I have quotes on everything from love to bubble gum.  Quotes about death and being born again.  Famous words about living a humble life and being a strong woman.  Proverbs regarding raising children and song lyrics that can bring even the strongest of men to tears.

I seek these quotes out whenever I can and I always try to jot them down, even if I don’t have my purple velvet book with me.  I’ve been known to write them on gum wrappers, napkins, receipts, and pretty much anything else you can think of.  But they always find their way into my book.

Mountain Man still doesn’t understand my collection.  He’s inquired about it several times throughout our time together and I’ve tried to explain it to him as best as I could.  He still doesn’t get it, though.  And really, I understand why he doesn’t get it.  I cannot give any real reason for my obsession with words.  I can’t give a plausible explanation for wanting to write someone else’s words down and keep them.  It makes absolutely no sense in the grand scheme of things.

But, in my world, it makes perfect sense.  My collection of quotes, sayings, bible verses, proverbs, song lyrics, and thoughts from other people remind me that no matter what I’m going through, someone else has been there, too.  No matter how elated I’m feeling, or how unbelievably loved, or how God-awful rotten, or how absolutely pathetic and pitiful and sad, someone else out there has felt that way too.  Someone else out there has been in my shoes and knows my frustrations and pain and love and happiness and helplessness and grief.  Someone else out there gets it.  My collection reminds me that I’m not alone in this world, that it can always be worse than what it really is, and that perhaps I truly might be one of the luckiest women in the world.  For even though my life is far from perfect and things rarely ever go as planned, if I died tomorrow, I can honestly say that I’ve truly lived.

I’ve experienced so many things in this world.  I’ve felt the pain and sting of life’s hurts.  I’ve felt the horrible ache and emptiness from the death of the only man who was always there for me, no matter what.  I’ve also felt the butterflies and the highest of highs whenever my love’s lips touch mine.   I’ve felt the hurt that only a Mother can know when her children disappoint her.  I’ve felt the disappointment from not acting on a gut feeling and following my heart.  I’ve felt a love like no other and basked in the joy that only true love can bring.  I’ve felt the hurt of knowing my friend is making the wrong decision but supporting her anyway because she’s my friend.  I’ve felt the sick worry that comes when my children are ill or hurt and I can’t help them.  I’ve felt the love in a stranger’s heart when I’ve offered a helping hand.

I have lived and my collection of words in my little purple book are a reflection of a life well lived.  I’ll have to replace my book soon because the pages are nearly full.  I’m not sure I’ll be able to find another little velvet covered purple book, but like so many other things in life, it’s not the cover that counts.  It’s what’s on the inside.

2012- Is The End Near or Are We Just Beginning?

I woke up this morning and had an epiphany while lying in Mountain Man’s big strong arms.  Well, actually, he might’ve been the one to kick start my epiphany.  After I said something about it being the first day of a new year, he reminded me that it’s now 2012.  So we jokingly went back and forth about this being our last year together and how we better make it count.

Well, that got me thinking.  What if this really is our last year on this earth?  What if these next 355 days are gonna be the very last days of our lives?  355 days because supposedly, the world’s supposed to end on December 21, 2o12.  355 days is not a lot of time when I stop and think about all the things I’ve ever wanted to do with my life before I leave this earth.  And I’ll bet there’s a whole lot of other people out there who feel the same way.  I know there’s a lot of people who have bucket lists, either written down somewhere, like me, or at the very least, filed safely away somewhere in the back of their minds where they can revisit the list and add to it while waiting in line at the grocery store or sitting in traffic or waiting for the doctor to come in while they’re sitting on that cold table in that cold room with nothing but socks and a paper gown for warmth and cover.  By the way, those paper gowns are on my list of most hated things.  We’ll get into that another time.

I know for me, personally, some of the items on my bucket list cannot be completed without a great deal of money.  Money that I’ve not yet had time to save up for.  I’ve not even started my bucket list savings account with my credit union!  I’ve been raising kids since I was practically a kid myself!  There’s never been enough extra to sock away for Mama’s wish list!  I always thought I’d fulfill my list much later in life.

If this is it, if these are truly the last days, then I guess that like a whole lot of other people out there, I won’t get to do all the things I dreamed of doing before I leave this earth.  I won’t get to visit the Louvre and stare in pure wonderment at some of the world’s most beautiful and famous artwork, or see Michelangelo’s work at the Sistine Chapel, or sink my toes in the black sand beaches of Punalu’u in Hawaii.  I may not ever try sushi or have coffee in The French Quarter.  I may not ever get to gaze upon Christ the Redeemer in Rio de Janeiro, or try to get one of the guards to giggle at Buckingham Palace, or visit Paula Deen’s restaurant in Savannah.  I might not make it to a beach that has white sand and crystal blue waters where I can swim with dolphins.  I may never fly… anywhere.  I might not get to try snowboarding or snorkeling.  I may never make it out to Jackson Hole for the hunting trip of a lifetime.  And these are only a few of the things on my to-do list for my life.

There are a great deal of things on my bucket list that require no monetary compensation to complete them.  And it’s all those “little things” that I hope to really work on in the next few months.  I’m a realist, so I know that I won’t be able to complete all of them.  But, I’m also a woman who is full of perpetual hope and faith and I believe that good things come to those who wait.  I believe in a great deal of things in this world, as well as the hereafter.  And it’s my belief in all these things that’s gonna help me check off as many of my items on my bucket list as I possible can.  Some of them, I’ll have to actively work on making them happen.  Others, I hope will just fall right into my lap when I least expect them to.  And it’s those things that I think are gonna mean the most to me.

I love life’s little surprises that make you smile like a fool for no reason and make others wonder about your sanity.  Those are the best moments.

So, while I personally don’t believe that the Four Horsemen are gonna come galloping up in 355 days, and I really doubt that I’m gonna make very many changes to my daily life as a direct result of an impending “end”, I do however think I’m gonna live my life with more purpose this year.  I don’t do New Year’s resolutions.  But if I did, savoring something, big or little, each and every day would be mine.

 

 

365

This is the last day of 2011 and it is just so hard for me to accept that.  I know people are always saying how this year or that year has just flown by, but for me, 2011 really has!  So many things have happened this year, both good and bad.  So many things have changed in my life.  So much newness to get used to.  So much happiness, regret, disappointment, loss, achievement, sadness and joy all packed into just 365 days!  Looking back on it all just blows me away.

I know that I previously stated somewhere in this past year that I was going to write something, anything, each and every day.  And I also know that I’ve not done that.  Sadly.

Mountain Man made a really good point the other night.  He was talking about how he hoped I would get back to writing.  I told him that I haven’t been writing because I felt like anything I put down would just be sad and depressing given my current frame of mind over the past few months.  But he brought up a good point.  One that I know to be true about myself but hadn’t really considered lately.

I’m one of those people who writes not only because I enjoy it, but when something’s bothering me, especially if it’s sad and personal, writing helps me work through it.  Writing about it helps to get my thoughts out of my head and helps ease the sadness and the pain associated with whatever is going on.  Even if I only write about it in a journal and no one else ever reads it.  But, I felt like I couldn’t write anymore because I knew that whatever spilled out of me would be depressing.

With his encouragement though came this great urgency to put on my big girl panties, cowgirl up, and just do it!  I’m one of those people who gets down on herself from time to time and sometimes, I just need a little push from the right people to get on with it and do what I know I’m supposed to be doing.

With that in mind, I think I’m gonna try the 365 project starting tomorrow.  I honestly don’t know if I can pull it off but I’m damn sure gonna give it my all.  Even if it’s just one measly little sentence a day, I’m going to write something every day of 2012.

God willing and the creek don’t rise.

Wish me luck!

What Is This World Coming To?

How many of you have seen this Christmas commercial?

Or this one?

Or how ’bout this one?

This one’s just terrible, awful!!!  I think it repulses me the most out of all the Best Buy Christmas commercials this year.  The Mom in this commercial is practically threatening to kick poor Santa off the roof!

What in the name of Kris Kringle is going on with the world today?  When did it become acceptable to mock Santa Claus?    How on earth did we, as a society, get to this sad and pitiful state of taunting Santa when he’s bringing us toys and goodies?  When did this become ok?  I’m just totally confused and outraged by this whole ugly mess.

I mean, Santa Claus is supposed to be revered and looked upon with wonder and magic and happiness and goodness.  He’s not supposed to be made fun of and mocked and made to look like a fool by bargain hunting, one-upping Moms!  Even though I am one of those bargain hunting Moms, I’m not about to be mean to Santa!  No way!  Nu-uh!  Not me!

How on earth can we expect to keep the magic of Santa Claus alive and well in society if this becomes the new norm for which we perceive the jolly old man who was always so good to all of us when we were little kids?  A man who still makes the season bright and joyous for many of us adults out there who still believe?

And before any of you start thinking I’m discounting Jesus, I just want to say that I am completely aware of the real reason for the season.  But in this little rant of mine, I’m only focusing on what the world is doing to Saint Nick.  What the world has done, for centuries, to Jesus is a whole other topic all together.  Oh, and you don’t need to call the people in the white coats to come haul me away for believing in Santa, either.  I will always and forever believe in Santa.  No matter what!

But, back to my rant.  I’m really bothered by these Best Buy ads.  And I’ve always liked Best Buy.  It really saddens me to think that they are perpetuating this awful behavior towards a man whose only purpose in life is to bring joy to all those who believe in him.  I can’t even to begin to imagine what all the little kids who are watching these tacky and tasteless commercials are thinking.  How can we, as parents, ever expect to be able to use the old “Santa Claus is watching you” threat to enlist good behavior during all the holiday madness after our kids have seen a Mom being mean to him on television?

Oh, don’t judge.  All you parents out there know you’ve uttered these words at least once a season since your kids were old enough to pitch a fit during a shopping trip/holiday party/family get-together/Christmas play/insert your own holiday scenario here.

But beyond the threat of no presents and reindeer poop in stockings, Santa’s supposed to represent all the love and goodness in this sometimes cruel world of ours for our children.  And for some of us adults, too.  Santa makes the season so magical and wonderful and full of delight and merriment.

Surely to goodness this will just be a one time, bad, poor, ugly choice of advertising for Best Buy and we’ll never, ever see any of these disgusting commercials again.

And Santa, if you’re reading my blog, just know that I still believe and if you decide to leave reindeer poop in the stockings of all the good folks over at Best Buy, we’d all understand and not think any less of you.

What I Learned Today

I always try to learn something new each and every day.  More often than not, it’s usually just something little and mundane that really doesn’t matter at the time.  But in the long run and the grand scheme of things, all those little things eventually mix and meld together and they combine with all the bigger lessons of life and encompass all the knowledge and wisdom that I hold near and dear in this world.

Well today, my lesson wasn’t what I might classify as a little thing, but more of a life lesson, and it sometimes astounds me that there are still life lessons out there to be learned at my age.  Not that I’m old or anything, but sometimes I find that I’m a little full of myself and think that I’ve already learned all of the life lessons out there.  And it’s in those moments when I’m absolutely sure that I know all there is to know about something that God decides to put me in my place, as He should.

So my lesson in humility for the day….

I can only do what I can do.  No more, no less.

God has a way of quietly whispering this to me at times and screaming it in my face at others.  But He always gets His point across.

I made myself a promise a while back that I was gonna write something, anything, each and every single day.  Then, my world came crashing down all around me, and as usual, I poured my heart and soul into trying to pick up the pieces and fix everything.  I’m a fixer.  It’s in my nature.  I can’t help it.  So, again, I ignored my promise to myself and stopped writing… again.

While I was in the midst of picking up pieces and attempting to fix everything, I had an epiphany… again.  I had to learn the hard way that I have absolutely no control over other people, yet again.  It was an illusion that I whole heartedly believed with every fiber of my being concerning him.  I just knew that if I did everything right, I could shape his life and help him change his stars, and who knows?  Perhaps, I really have done these things and the fruits of my labor are just yet to be seen.  But right now, in this moment, I can only do what I can do.  No more, no less.

Do you know how horribly difficult it is for someone like me to accept this absolute truth in life?  God keeps trying to teach me that He’s the one in control.  But, sometimes that’s just so hard for me to accept.  But for now, in this moment, I think I’ve finally got the message, loud and clear this time.

I can only do what I can do.  No more, no less.

But that does not mean that my faith is gone.  No, no, no.  Far from it.  My perpetual hope in him to eventually find his path in life and remember all the lessons I’ve taught him and mature into the wonderful man that I’ve always known he was gonna be when he grows up is still there and I still believe.  I will always believe.

But…

I can only do what I can do.  No more, no less.

Oh, Happy Day!

See this…

This big ball of fire makes this Mountain Girl veeeeerrrrrrrrryyy happy!

Nothing like a little dose of sunshine in the bright Carolina blue sky to brighten up even the darkest of days.

 

It just doesn’t get much better than this, y’all!

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