Archive for June, 2012

June 26, 2012

Laugh of the day – June 26, 2012

Observed on the street:

A pre-schooler to his mother, as they walk towards Shoppers Drug Mart:  “Is that the Band-Aid store?”

Life’s necessities are so much simpler when you’re four years old 🙂

June 22, 2012

What are we doing to our forests?

Makes you think, doesn’t it?


Aerial view of  hurricane and logging damage in a Swedish forest.  The clearcut area looks like a giant oak tree stamped into the surrounding forest.



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June 20, 2012

How can you help “Corriger le tableau” / “Clean the slate” ?

This short film is incredibly powerful — it speaks volumes about stereotypes, prejudices and self-esteem among First Nations youth in Canada, and it raises important questions about what we (as non-Native Canadians) can do to help “clean the slate” and provide these youth with the level playing field they need for their self-confidence to grow and their dreams to truly take flight.

(Note:  The film was created by First Nations youth from the community of Manawan, Quebec, and Wapikoni Mobile, a non-profit organization dedicated to brining audiovisual skills and a voice to First Nations youth in isolated communities.  I was fortunate enough to see the film as part the Asinabka Film and Media Arts Festival, which runs this week in Ottawa, Canada.)



More information:

[Film summary for non-French speakers:  First Nations youth write on the chalkboard stereotypes and derogatory comments they encounter in their lives — things like “Go back to the reserve,” “Savage,” “Cigarette smuggler,” “Poor,” “Druggie,” “I wear feathers,” “Don’t pay taxes,” “Lazy,” etc.  Then, they erase these words and write descriptions of who they really are:  “I am fine,” “I will be an airplane pilot,” “Love sports,” “Generous,” “Love music,” “Good at school,” “Passionate about hockey,” “Cook well,” “Make everyone laugh,” “Proud to be who I am.”  The title “Corriger le tableau” means “Clean the slate.”]

June 18, 2012

“Shovel your anger daily”

More wisdom and a great metaphor from Sue Monk Kidd in Firstlight:

My local newspaper carried a picture of a house with a caved-in roof.  The living room was waist-high with snow.  It covered the sofa, the chairs, and the tables.  The caption read, “Roof gives way under weeks of accumulated snow.”  The owner had let the drifts pile up till it all came tumbling down at once.

It is easy to be critical of this kind of negligence, but I’ve done the same thing with anger.  Storing it up in bits and pieces — a few silent irritations here, some inward resentments there — until I have an overloaded roof ready to cave in on someone.

There is both spiritual and psychological wisdom in the adage, “Don’t let the sun go down on your anger.”  I made a promise to myself to shovel it daily.


June 18, 2012

Laugh of the day – June 18, 2012

Courtesy of Dilbert on June 13, 2012:


Dilbert comic from June 13, 2012


Remember, regardless of “what other people think,” your own perspective is unique and always worth sharing.   Speak loud and speak proud!  🙂

June 16, 2012

A new way to think about impatience

Following on the theme of my last post — i.e., that a slight change in punctuation within a word can give it a whole new meaning — consider this observation from from SARK in her book Make Your Creative Dreams Real:

Impatience can become I’M PATIENCE.

The next time you feel impatient, replace that thought or feeling with “I’m patient.”  I’ll bet this simple reflection will make your shoulders drop a a notch and your breath come a bit easier. 🙂 

June 14, 2012

“Now here” vs. “nowhere” — the difference is just a pause

I’m now reading the book Firstlight by Sue Monk Kidd — mostly because I finally got around to reading The Secret Life of Bees, and that launched me into a bit of a Sue-Monk-Kidd kick.

(A note on The Secret Life of Bees:  Wow.  Jaw-dropping, heart-swelling, tear-inducing wow, to be exact.  What an absolutely fabulous book.  Can that woman ever write!  I already count several of Sue Monk Kidd’s books among those deserving of a permanent slot in my bookcase, and I will certainly be creating space for this one alongside Dance of the Dissident Daughter, The Mermaid Chair, and Travelling with Pomegranates, which she co-wrote with her daughter Anne Kidd-Taylor.)

The thing I like most about Sue’s writing is that she takes the time and makes the effort to delve into the deeper questions of life — questions about who she is, what matters most to her, and how she can find and maintain a fulfilling connection to her own senses of spirituality and self as she moves through the journey of life.

Reading Firstlight, this quote jumped out at me:

“Someone pointed out to me that the words now, here and nowhere have the same arrangement of letters, but differ when a small space is inserted.”

Sue goes on to suggest that “a fine space [also] separates us from experiencing our life as nowhere or now here,” but I take more from it than that….

  • What if “now here” and “nowhere” are actually one and the same thing, in a way — that to truly be “now here,” you have to be “nowhere” else?
  • Or, perhaps all you need to get from “nowhere” to “now here” (which I equate with presence) is simply to pause. . . take a breath. . . create a moment of stillness and quiet so that your awareness itself has space to breathe and grow.

Thoughts to ponder….