Thought(s) of the Day: Inspirational and/or amusing Nuggets of Wisdom

Advent, like its cousin Lent, is a season for prayer and reformation in our hearts. Take time to be aware that in the very midst of our busy preparations for the celebration of Christ's birth, Christ is reborn in our homes and daily lives. Take time, slow down, be still, be awake to the Divine Mystery that looks so common and so ordinary yet is wondrously present.
~Edward Hays

The only people with whom you should try to get even are those who have helped you.
~John E. Southard

Monday, November 23, 2009

What a "Sweet" Afternoon

My oldest son had some classmates over to play this weekend. We couldn't have had better weather, or a better group of children. Including my youngest son, we had a party of six. My Pops threw some wood on the fire pit and we roasted hot dogs for lunch. The kids had a great time running and playing and eating outside. After lunch, we let everyone toast their own marshmallows for some yummy, gooey S'mores. They were a big (messy) hit! Every cheek and smile in the backyard was covered with melted chocolate and marshmallow goo. But the S'mores sure were delicious! The play date was a big success and everyone had a wonderful time.

In the middle of lunch, one of my son's female classmates leaned toward his ear and whispered. They were both smiling ear to ear and let out some cute, squeaky giggles. His eyes lit up and he responded, "Sure! That's sounds really great to me!"

He later tells me that she asked if they could be boyfriend and girlfriend.....and they're kindergartners! He then goes on to tell me, completely serious and with a straight face, "You know, Mom. You might have just met your future daughter-in-law today." It took everything within me not to laugh but I didn't want to hurt his feelings so I kept it together. The moment was so precious and sincere.

I hope everyone's weekend was as carefree, laughter-filled, and gooey as ours was!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Ancient Wisdom

Those of you who know me, know how much I love inspirational quotes and encouraging adages. In fact, on a bad day it's these hopeful words that keep me keeping on. I know it's easy to dismiss them as platitudes and even easier to stay in your grumpy mood. All I know is repetition (and reflection) of these so-called platitudes really help me climb out of some dark holes. With that said, I'd like to share some of my favorites, "oldies but goodies", from ancient Asian wisdom. Hope you enjoy them as much as I do!

The Wisdom of Chinese Proverbs:

The gem cannot be polished without friction, nor man perfected without trials.
(What great advice! I must be one brilliant stone by now!)

If you are patient in one moment of anger, you will escape a hundred days of sorrow.
(I know, easier said than done- but again, what great advice!)

Better to light a candle than to curse the darkness.
(I really like this one because it urges you to act. Too many times, we become victims. We complain, place blame, wait around for someone or something to solve our problems. You're the only one who can light your candle and fan the flame. So what are you waiting for? Stop complaining, create a spark, and light your fire!)

I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. I do and I understand.
(Not so much for cheering purposes, but I just love this old adage. It describes the Montessori philosophy of education (of which I'm a huge fan) perfectly. For all of you parents out there, truer words can not be said of meaningful and effective learning. There simply is no substitution for learning by doing.)

The one who pursues revenge should dig two graves.
(So true. Life's too short and precious to hold onto anger and pain. Letting go is the only sane and healthy choice to make...unless you're content spending the rest of your life in that dark grave. And really, what kind of life is that? So stop digging, put down the shovel, back away from that grave- and LIVE!)

Along the same lines of letting go, here is a great quote from the wisdom of Buddha:

Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one who gets burned. (Ouch!)

Some more brilliant advice from our friend Buddha:

You, yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.
(So true! Have you hugged yourself yet today?)

Three things cannot be long hidden: the sun, the moon, and the truth.
(I like this one. Helps me remember not to take short cuts or keep score. Just be your best and do your best. As they say, the proof is in the pudding!)

Thousands of candles can be lighted from a single candle, and the life of the candle will not be shortened. Happiness never decreases by being shared.
(Smile! You won't lose yours by giving it to someone else! Also, I have found that faking a good mood, often results in one. Pretty neat!)

To sum it up: Throw down that shovel, give yourself a big hug, use that hot coal you've been carrying around to light your candle- and don't forget to smile!