One Thousand Gifts

Beach Glass in Gumball Machine

What makes your heart smile?

I thrive wherever there’s an expanse of sand and water. Ocean or bay is my all-is-well-with-the-world spot. Appreciation of the day: That I live near one of each, for walks on the beach whenever I want.

For a playful memento in the design studio, I’m collecting beach glass in an old-fashioned gumball machine. This makes me smile.

. . . . . . . . . . .

I’m known as the positive one in the family. It’s a running joke with Momma, that I’m always tryin’ to get them to look on the bright side.

(Hey, there are pretty much always two sides … and they’re usually more or less equal … why not pick the one that doesn’t totally suck? Am I right? 😉 )

So today should come as no surprise.

Momma is addressing a package, Dad is trying to get her out the door.

Me: “We’re gonna count 1,000 gifts in 2012 … three per day. So today, June 13th, be on the lookout for something you smell which you’re grateful for and at the end of the day you tell me, k?”

Dad: (pauses with amused smile / raise-of-the-eyebrow combo) “Ooooo-KAY!”
(translation: “Whatever you say, crazy girl!”)

Me: (laughing) “Momma you’re not even listening …”

Momma: (not looking up) “I’m listening. I already know what it will be … a cup of tea!”

. . . . . . . . . . .

“Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow.”

—Melody Beattie

What three things do you appreciate today?
And who can you coerce to join you in a little gratitude dance?

One Thousand Gifts in June

Print out and count your own 1,000 gifts in June!

 

Attracting Ideal Clients

"The Art of Attraction: How to Draw in YOUR Ideal Clients (from the inside out)" Audio Class

  • Who do you just adore working with?
  • What makes you feel deliciously happy?
  • What type of project do you feel this sense of joyful, excited 
    anticipation for?

Focusing on these things will create a flow IN. Trust me, I’m living, breathing proof! When you get your energy straight, you can’t help but attract people who are a beautiful peanut butter to your jelly!

When I first started out in business over 20 years ago, I adored what I did but somehow thought that my main incentive was career-for-bill-paying. Silly girl! That creates a push-push-push mentality when what works oh-so-much better is a drawing-in, attracting type of spirit …

Y’know, the whole “If you build it, they will come” scenario. Kevin was really onto somethin’ there!

To hear more, download a complimentary audio of my class
The Art of Attraction: How to Draw in YOUR Ideal Clients
(from the inside out)

Enjoy!

 

Inspiring Art: Believe

Wisdom of Your Heart

Wisdom of Your…
Flavia Weedn
Get one at Allposters.com


Believe in Miracles


Believe in…
Flavia Weedn
Pick one up at Allposters.com


Believe and Hope I


Believe and Hope…
Daphne
Purchase this at Allposters.com


Believe Butterfly


Believe Butterfly
Ricki Mountain
Get one at Allposters.com

Just Breath


Just Breath
Purchase this at Allposters.com

Believe in Possibility Wall Art - Kelly Rae Roberts

Believe in Possibility Wall Art
Kelly Rae Roberts
Pick one up at Amazon.com 

"Believing that the dots will connect down the road will give you the confidence to follow your heart even when it leads you off the well worn path.” —Steve Jobs

Read “The Innovation Secrets of Steve Jobs
by Carmine Gallo. Discover exciting new ways to unlock your creative potential and to foster an environment that encourages innovation and allows it to flourish.

Dreaming in Spanish

Un Cœur de Papillon by Sybile

 

My latest dream was to have a language-practice-buddy …

When I first met Sara, she didn’t say a word to me … even though I spoke to her in my very best Spanish.

Although I absolutely adore the language, I’ve rarely spoken it in 20 years. No one to practice with! (I don’t know about you but after all that time … especially when I was never actually even fluent in the first place … I’m thinkin’ I need a whoooole bunch’a practice. Right?)

I noticed … when you’re not a native speaker, people tend to answer your Spanish with English. I suppose it’s their noble attempt to relieve you of the need to stumble imperfectly through their language. Meanwhile you were wanting to stumble through!

Years ago I had a friend from Uruguay … yaaaaaay! … who found it uber annoying to slow down her Spanish in order to practice with her beloved buddy … booooo! 

Alas, I was flying solo on the language front.

My first one-sided conversation with Sara was along the lines of one or two sentences. Something like, “Thank you so much for picking up my clothes from the floor. I so appreciate it.” … Only in Spanish.

Precious mom had hired her to come help me with a few things. My hands are givin’ me a run for my money so I pretty much conserve them for essentials like my beloved graphic design.

Folding is not an essential.

Which explains the ever-growing clean laundry mountain on my living room floor. I can’t bring myself to ask for help. Too big of a feat to impose on anyone else.

Not even the girl who my mother so kindly hired to help me … a girl who just happens to speak my favorite language in the world next to English.

Whenever I hear Spanish, my ears perk up and I yearn to attempt to partake in the conversation. Occasionally I do, in my little broken-language way … pausing to think of a word … wrestling with past perfect verb conjugation … hoping they’ll speak relatively slowly so I can catch what they’re saying.

Ever since I was little, I’ve always adored the Spanish language.

My neighbor’s mother had one’a those classic record albums. You know the ones … “Listen and repeat … Hello … ¡Hola! … ¡Hola!”

I was in heaven!

Next I remember a little red hard-bound book with black and white line drawings. I must’ve been ten. I learned to say things like “ceiling” and “pencil” and “book.”

“Cielo raso” … the very first word I learned … a word I will remember til my dying day. Why Berlitz thinks “ceiling” is one of the first things I’ll need to know how to say on my upcoming trip to Spain or South America is beyond me.

Who cares, I ate it up anyway.

Now I could go around pointing passionately to chairs and desks and other objects, naming them with reckless abandon. I was a force to be reckoned with.

Fast forward to last year. The scene: A train station

Two guys were trying to purchase a ticket … and not being particularly successful. In fact, they were about to give up.

I heard the familiar lilt of my second-favorite-language in the air so of course I perked up and stepped in to save the day with my fabulous Spanish explanation of what they needed to do at the ticket machine.

I have no idea what I sounded like from the other end but apparently I said it right because they did what I suggested. Then one of the guys turned to me and spoke to me in perfect Spanish, to my delight.

Remember what I said about people responding in English? No, he was speaking Spanish. Delicious Spanish.

He asked, “¿Habla español?”

To which I gleefully replied, “Ooooh … ¡Me gusta español! Pero tengo que practicar y no tengo nadie para practicar mi español. Por favor, correctame si estoy diciendo esto incorrecta.”

(Which is something akin to, “I love Spanish. But I need to practice and have no one to practice my Spanish with. Please correct me if I am saying this wrong.”)

The glee continued because he did just that, he corrected me, changing “practicar mi español” to “practicar hablar español.”

And then continued to speak to me in slow, mid-level Spanish for an entire hour and a half on the train.

Bliss!

Fast forward once again …  to this year.

I was super-appreciative of Sara’s help. So, in true jewelry fairy fashion, I decide to give her a piece of jewelry I had made back in the day, along with a little note in Spanish. Since it was coming from the heart, I didn’t go the Google-translate route and just wung it.

Fantastic idea.

In my enthusiasm, all of my verb tenses went completely out the window and I wound up saying the Spanish version of the following:

“This is a necklace I make to say thank you for your help me. I don’t know if the Spanish is correct. It’s not perfect but I love the language, so I try to speak it. :)”

Close enough, right?

Well, the stars were aligned and God himself was smiling down on me because that day a friendship was born. The very next time I saw her, Sara was all aflutter with conversation.

Spanish conversation.

We talked about how she had come here to work, left her three kids behind … the challenges she has at work … how she yearns to be doing things in the way that people need her to but has no idea what that is or how to ask since she doesn’t speak the language.

My heart went out to Sara.

I could help! We’ll meet once a week and I’ll help with her English. She can tell me about situations that come up at work and I’ll teach her things she can say. We’ll practice little scenarios and conversations. We can totally do this. We got this!

So now we’re at present day. We get together at the library each week. We laugh a lot and I make up practice sheets for her and we work on her English. I need to speak a lot of Spanish because that’s the way we communicate. Funny, I’ve learned a lot about Spanish by teaching Sara English!

The last time we met, I told Sara about the conversation I’d had with the guy at the train station last year. I wanted her to help me with the structure of the sentence “I need to practice and have no one to practice speaking Spanish with.”

In her language I asked, “How should I say that sentence in Spanish?”

She answered, “You shouldn’t.”

Maybe she didn’t understand the words. I smiled and repeated the sentence, “I need to practice and have no one to practice speaking Spanish with.”

She replied, “Well now, you do.”

And hey she was right!
Look at that … Sometimes your dreams sneak up on you.

 

Un sueño es un deseo de su corazón hace

 

 

 

   

Just for fun …

Notes from the Universe

 

 

Visit again tomorrow for a new special message! (or simply refresh your browser window and poof! Fresh inspiration at your fingertips!) 

                        

Joy of a Playful Heart

 

Me 'n my muffinThe scene: On our way back from my echocardiogram/chest x-ray bonanza, another beyoooootiful doctors’ office to experience. (Since when do doctors have offices that look like hotel lounges anyway? Seriously! Can I live here?)

We spontaneously stop by FeelGoods Café  for a super-healthy, preservative-free Sweet Potato Spinach Edgy Burger / Salad Combo with roasted sesame dressing.

Healthy + Yum = Perfection.

On my way out, I attempt to ignore the little shelf of muffins and cookies which are yelling, “Col, Col! YO!”

Our eyes meet. I love a good muffin. I keep walking.

Driving home, Gary declares his intention to pit-stop at the convenience store for a cup’a joe. Um, hang on a sec there, bud—If I remember correctly, you gave up coffee weeks ago! (I remind him playfully.)

Of course he can do absolutely whatever he wants to do but a supportive girlfriend is required to at least remind you before letting you do absolutely whatever you want to do, right? Didn’t I read that in the rule book?

In exchange (I’m told) I can have something I’ve got a hankering for too … that should make it even, says he.

Hmm, this just might work.

Well, I haven’t been having cookies and muffins and ice cream and … the options are endless as a parade of sweet things and bread-like things swim before my goo-goo eyes.

He teases me, “Maybe you shouldn’t. What do you think?”

Maybe I shouldn’t, I don’t know. But I really wanna!

We arrive. Go time. I’ll wait in the car.

Gary: “Where’s my wallet?”

Me: (holding it up) “Here!”

Gary: (continuing around back to the trunk) “Where?”

Me: (moving it in the window towards the back) “Here, right here!”

Gary: (opening up the trunk) “What?”

Me: (smushing the wallet against the back window) “Here, here!”

Suddenly, in the side window, up pops Gary’s monster-grin next to this big muffin. “I got you a muffin! It’s gluten-free! I hid it in the trunk!”

 

I love this guy.

 

 

  • FeelGoods Café: Long Island, NY
    Our healthy-delicious lunch and my surprise-muffin came from FeelGoods. Every ingredient is 100% natural and free of artificial preservatives, additives, chemicals, dyes … and anything fake! (Do I work for them? Nope! Just love their food!)
  • Udi’s Gluten-Free: Online, through Amazon 
    Not in the NY area and feel like you’re missin’ out? Aaw, don’t feel that way! Order blueberry muffins and cinnamon rolls and bagels and double chocolate muffins and other yummies online!

 

Inspiring Art: Quotables

Click for a printable version, shared with love.

Click for a printable version, shared with love.

"Divine order is now established  in me and in my world.   I am in divine order.   I am in sublime order now.  I let go and trust."     —Catherine Ponder  from The Dynamic Laws of Prosperity

Click for printable version.
From The Dynamic Laws of Prosperity.

“Imagination is everything. It is the preview of life’s coming attractions.” – Albert Einstein

Click for printable version

Inspiring Artwork: Quotables: Louisa May Alcott
Click for printable version

 

Inspiring Art: Smiles

How others see you is not important. How you see yourself is everything.

Happiest Day

 Check out more comics by Stephan Pastis … like
The Crass Menagerie: A Pearls Before Swine Treasury

There are things you do because they feel right and they may make no sense and they may make no money and it may be the real reason we are here: to love each other and to eat each other's cooking and say it was good  ― Brian Andreas

Dig that? Read more Brian Andreas wisdom in
Trusting Soul: Collected Stories & Drawings

Mr. Facebook Profile Photo

My father just asked me how to get onto Facebook …

Me– “Type in facebook.com”
Dad– (pointing to my Droid) “What’s that?”
Me– “Its my Droid, Dad”
Dad– “So that’s your smart machine that you write to me from?”

Look out, world, here comes Dad! 🙂

 

Robert Brault cha-cha quote
Robert Brault said that. He’s so smart!

 

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