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Open to Wonder

“From wonder into wonder existence opens.” – Lao Tzu

“Personal growth is not a matter of learning new information but of unlearning old limits.” – Alan Cohen

May you breathe in fresh air of trying new things.
From clumsy to cadence.
Practice to pretty good.
Repetition and unfolding.
Seed. Bud. Bloom.
Putting down to create capacity to pick up.
Curiosity, wonder, inquiry.
Exploration, off-trail, awe.
Detour into open space today
Blank canvas. Box full of crayons.
Color outside the lines.

“An empty canvas is a living wonder… far lovelier than certain pictures.” – Wassily Kandinsky

To Be Known

“Let us be grateful to the people who make us happy; they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.” – Marcel Proust

a blessing for friends who hold us up by Kate Bowler

“God, you called me to love
but people are inherently risky.
Telling my story, being known, asking for help,
complaining again about
the thing I worry might sound cliché by now. Shouldn’t I be over it already?

But something is happening when I am known.
I am becoming stronger somehow.

I am reminded of the pillars I’ve seen
holding up cathedrals.
Flying buttresses, engineered to provide support for a fragile wall,
allowing them to be built taller, more stunning, more covered with ornaments
or filled with stained glass,
letting all the colorful light dance in.

The walls would collapse without them there, but strengthened, they create something beautiful.
God, when I am no longer quite so tall and strong, give me those who hold me up
and remind me of who I am and that I’m loved.

Yes, I’ll get back up again today.
Yes, I’ll get those kids cereal
and help my parents with an errand.
Yes, I’ll go to work or come up with something better to do with retirement hours.

I will try again.
I know I will,
because someone else’s absurd faith in me
is fortifying

So, blessed are our flying buttresses.
For they hold us up
when everything seems ready to come apart, allowing us to face today—
not because we’re doing it alone—
but precisely because we aren’t.”

Monthly dinners.
Texts, calls to check in.
“Likes” and comments on Facebook posts.
Some things we agree on.
Some things we don’t.
The one thing we all agree on is the blessing of friendship.
Making time for connection.
Reaching out.
Creating new adventures.
Scheduling “play dates.”
Live the good life with what’s right in front of you, right now.
Foster, feed and nurture friendships.
The blossoms are beautiful.

“The good life is not always just out of reach after all. It is not waiting in the distant future after a dreamy career success. It’s not set to kick in after you acquire some massive amount of money. The good life is right in front of you, sometimes only an arm’s length away. And it starts now.”― Robert Waldinger, The Good Life: Lessons from the World’s Longest Study on Happiness

Last for Now

“The present moment is the only time over which we have dominion.” – Thich Nhat Hanh

“The answer must be, I think, that beauty and grace are performed whether or not we will or sense them. The least we can do is try to be there.”― Annie Dillard, Pilgrim at Tinker Creek

The water is colder within a week.
Leaves are starting to change.
Chrysalis time.
Cool mornings. Warm days with an edge. Cool evenings.
Last swim for the girls.
Topping off a summer filled with swims, play, delight.
Last for now.
Fresh delight to partake in.
Seasons meld from one to the next.
Returning again and again.
Same and different.
We change from one season to the next.
Sometimes we choose, sometimes we are forced.
Growth and transformation if we allow and receive.
Remain in the present season, knowing the next will surely come.
In due time without fail.
Last for now, making way for next and new.

“One of the more delicate gifts of soul that can come from the chrysalis is a refined attunement to the here-and-now. We learn how to be genuinely present to life.”— Sue Monk Kidd, When the Heart Waits: Spiritual Direction for Life’s Sacred Questions

The Currency of Grace

“The same stream of life that runs through my veins night and day runs through the world and dances in rhythmic measures. It is the same life that shoots in joy through the dust of the earth in numberless blades of grass and breaks into tumultuous waves of leaves and flowers.”― Rabindranath Tagore

“The new life into which we are baptized is lived out in days, hours, and minutes. God is forming us into a new people. And the place of that formation is in the small moments of today.”― Tish Harrison Warren, Liturgy of the Ordinary: Sacred Practices in Everyday Life

Passing moments unnoticed.
Daily tasks repeated.
Ordinary days.
Unseen and bypassed for other and next.
Put the map down.
Pin where you are and enter the space of today.
This is the place of your life before you in plain and beautiful sight.
Calling softly to enter, dance, delight in.

“Ordinary love, anonymous and unnoticed as it is, is the substance of peace on earth, the currency of God’s grace in our daily life.”― Tish Harrison Warren, Liturgy of the Ordinary: Sacred Practices in Everyday Life

Student of Joy

“One can never consent to creep when one feels an impulse to soar.”― Helen Keller, The Story of My Life

“The root of joy is gratefulness…It is not joy that makes us grateful; it is gratitude that makes us joyful.”― Brother David Steindl-Rast

Get out into the world.
Look up and around.
Reach, dig, hunt for joy.
Make it a practice, intention, habit, action.
Every day.
Invite and welcome it in.
Expand your mind and thoughts as big as the sky.
Right where you stand now.
Not backwards.
Not forwards.
In stillness, rooted in gratitude, laughter, connection, in now.
Joy is a practice, a discipline, an effort at times, easy at times.
Become a student of joy.
A master of delight.

“There is not one blade of grass, there is no color in this world that is not intended to make us rejoice.”― John Calvin


“Be gentle with your words, your heart is listening.”― Carol ‘CC’ Miller

“Rather than wandering around in problem-solving mode all day, thinking mainly of what you want to fix about yourself or your life, you can pause for a few moments throughout the day to marvel at what’s not broken.”― Kristin Neff, Self-Compassion: The Proven Power of Being Kind to Yourself

A soft breeze.
Flowers in fresh bloom.
The laughter of a child.
Music turned up to prompt a move or two.
The romp and delight of dogs.
The wide-open spaces in your heart.
Awe abound.
Pause. Notice. Partake.
The marvel of simple joys woven through each day.
Falling into gratitude.
Engage with the world around you.
Speak kindness, compassion, love.
Your heart is listening.

“Being human is not about being any one particular way; it is about being as life creates you—with your own particular strengths and weaknesses, gifts and challenges, quirks and oddities.”― Kristin Neff, Self-Compassion: The Proven Power of Being Kind to Yourself

Summer Fall Dance

“Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.” — Albert Camus

“Make your learning abundant and speak of it with precision, then you will speak of essentials.”― Mencius, Mencius

The in between of seasons changing.
Hot then cool.
Back to school.
Schedules and busy replace slow and wide-open spaces.
Hold onto the slow and create space in all seasons.
The color of flowers in bloom cascades to leaves ablaze.
Find the beauty in harvest time.

“Be gentle. Pay attention. Offer purposeful healing. Seek Equilibrium. Unfreeze, slowly. Stretch yourself out into the world. Let your eyes calibrate to this new light and notice how it caresses the lines and curves and soft and hard of you. Allow your mouth to twist and stumble around new shapes. Be so very sensory. Notice everything. From every angle. The way your bones feel. The way you orient to space and time. Invite your whole being into this new way of living, into the totality and wholeness of it. Let it be strange and uncomfortable and painful and stiff. Let it be magical and novel and unfamiliar and entirely wonderful. Follow the whispers where they lead.”― Jeanette LeBlanc

The Sun Remains

“Let the sun set, let the darkness fall, do not be afraid, as long as the sun does not set in your mind!”― Mehmet Murat ildan

“In a world where everything comes at a price, if you’re choosing to stay kind, if you’re choosing to value your dignity and your integrity, if your choosing to understand and embrace the smile of Solitude, if you’re choosing to employ your faculties to understand the real questions of Life, then you’re alive, much more alive than your human dreams could have made you feel. Because no matter what, when sunset hits the night, and the day comes to a close you know you’ve done your part, you know you have embraced one more day with gratitude and grace, with a formidable zeal for Life and an invincible spirit of human understanding that stands firm pillared with Hope and Faith. And then no matter how many voices shrill your mind, the echo of your soul would pierce through your heart and enlighten every inch of your mind, body and soul, and you would know how proud the Universe must be to see the faithfulness, the strength and resilience in your soul, the very mould that was shaped in the fire of the Stardust that shines upon the sky, sometimes becoming a beacon to others while sometimes lying beautifully hidden but always there, always alive.” ― Debatrayee Banerjee

As summer tumbles into fall slowly but surely.
As seasons change without fail.
The sun remains.
Rising and falling.
Inviting us to find and make meaning in each day.
Beginnings and endings again and again.
The middle, the makings of our life.
Stay kind, gentle, curious, and alive through it all.
A beacon, a light.

“The sun’s descent marks not just the end of another day, but a symbolic passage—a reminder that life, like the sun, moves in cycles, each ending giving birth to a new beginning.”― Ryan Gelpke, Peruvian Day

Soft and Gentle

“the voice of beauty speaks softly; it creeps only into the most fully awakened souls”― Nietzsche

“Тhe gentle overcomes the rigid.
The slow overcomes the fast.
The weak overcomes the strong.”

“Everyone knows that the yielding overcomes the stiff,
and the soft overcomes the hard.
Yet no one applies this knowledge.”― Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching

Like the petal of a flower.
The dance of a butterfly.
The hovering of a bee.
The gaze of a deer.
Soft and gentle.
Easy and slow.
Inquire, observe, wait for the answers to flow.
A river, always in motion beneath the surface.
Moving and swirling.
A current smoothing the rocks.
Awakening the soul.
Be soft, kind, gentle.
To self and others.
All just learning to fly.

“Be gentle,
Be compassionate,
Play nice,
Just remember that All
of us are learning how to fly.”― Charmaine J. Forde


“Happiness held is the seed; Happiness shared is the flower.” – John Harrigan

“Go placidly amid the noise and the haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence. As far as possible without surrender, be on good terms with all persons. Speak your truth quietly and clearly, and listen to others, even the dull and ignorant; they too have their story.

Be yourself. Especially do not feign affection. Neither be cynical about love – for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is perennial as the grass. Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth.

Nurture strength of spirit to shield you from misfortune. But do not distress yourself with imaginings. Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness. Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here. And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be, and whatever your labours and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul. With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world.”― Max Ehrmann, Desiderata: A Poem for a Way of Life

May your mind be able to be changed.
Your heart opened wider.
Your spirit ascend again and again.
And hope and joy be the song you sing each day.
Anticipation, delight and ease be yours this day.

“To be devoid of life is to lack spiritual dimension that brings heaven to earth”― Sunday Adelaja

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