Everyday Tidbits...

Be Kind. Do Good. Love is a Verb.

Friday, January 27, 2023

Пятница Ponderings: Impact

Ponder: to consider something deeply and thoroughly; meditate 
Пятница (PYAHT-nee-tsuh): Friday in Russian
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I went to a funeral last week for a dear friend who died way too young. She was a remarkable woman and her service was lovely. Her family shared memories that were funny, heartwarming and a little irreverent.

The messages left on Facebook posts and her obituary called to mind a woman who loved people and served others. People generally like to remember the deceased as perfect and I so appreciated that her family shared the funny and irreverent stories as well as the perfect ones. 

I have known her since we were babies and I have some cherished memories of the good and funny times.

But, as I sat there, I thought about the impact we have on others. The influence.

This woman touched so many lives because she loved people and she cared about them. She is remembered with love and fondness.

She wasn't one who needed accolades and often served or gave in secret. But she is remembered well.

I sat there and wondered what people might say about me?

I know people who want adulation and acknowledgment and praise. Who want people to tell them they are awesome and amazing. I know others who probably deserve even more adulation and praise and don't seek it. 

I am not comfortable being the center of attention now and I don't need praise or accolades. I don't want them.

Given that I don't want a funeral, it won't matter in that sense. But, I think it's normal to wonder about our impact. Have I helped others? Have I made a difference in this world? Am I remembered as kind or happy or mean and grumpy. Any day, some and even all of those can apply.

My personal belief is that I don't know what happens after this life. I was taught about eternal life as a part of my faith of origin, but my religious beliefs are much different today. 

I have decided that if there is a life after this one, great. I hope I get to read books and snuggle my puppy and my husband forever. But, if there isn't, then either way, I am going to make this life, right now, the best one possible.

I can't make big differences globally or nationally. But, I have a small sphere of influence within my daily life, made up of my family and the people I talk to/interact with every day. I hope that if I can make a difference here, then maybe the ripple effect is real and perhaps proceed further.

I have adopted the mantra of, "Be kind. Do good. Make a difference. Love is a verb."

If anyone is going to say anything about me after I die, I hope it's that I made a difference. I know that my friend certainly did. She lived her life in a joyful tide and carried those around her in the wave.

Wednesday, January 25, 2023

Puzzles...Sweet Donuts


Tile puzzles are my favorite. And who doesn't love cupcakes and donuts?


I love the quality of Clementoni puzzles. This was a pleasure to assemble. 


Sweet Donuts
1000 pieces
Clementoni


Friday, January 6, 2023

Пятница Ponderings: Word of the Year

Ponder: to consider something deeply and thoroughly; meditate 
Пятница (PYAHT-nee-tsuh): Friday in Russian
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Choosing your word of the year. Good for growth or a trendy bandwagon?

I've never really chosen a word to represent me or to focus on. I'm not opposed to it, by any means. Anything that facilitates healing and personal growth is a good thing.

Just like I don't make official goals or resolutions each year, but I attempt to continue on my journey of healing and growth.

I have seen many posts throughout social media about the word of the year though. How to choose it, what a person's word is. 

For some, I see it as a way to get attention. " Look at me. I'm an influencer. Here's my expensive necklace or vinyl lettering of my word for the year."

Yeah, I tend to scroll past those posts. Can't relate, but I can see their need for significance. I hope they somehow find it and that their word does mean something to them. 

I pause at the posts which are honestly reflective. Where the person has shared their word and why. I am often enlightened and touched by those posts. And truly, most people who share their word or their decision-making process are reflective. Their journey is important and the word they choose is important.

The last few years my focus has been on authenticity. I don't have the word posted somewhere. I don't wear it on a chain. But it's there. 

I grew up in a high demand religion. A religion that dictated how I lived, how I dressed, what I didn't eat or drink. How to think. 

High demand religions don't allow people their own voices. They don't allow you to be yourself and discover your own wants/needs/personality. They make you believe you have the ability to choose your life for yourself, but you really don't. 

And I realized a few years ago that I wanted more. So, I have been on a journey to discover who I am and what I want and how I think and what I believe. It's a process and I keep finding more layers to uncover and examine. It's one of the hardest things I've ever done.

But, in doing this work, I've discovered that I value kindness above anything else. I often say that love is verb, but I truly believe it is. I have found that I am kinder and less judgmental now.  I have come to learn that all of us have a divine sense, that the fact that we exist makes us remarkable. I believe that people are inherently good and I wish they could all see that for themselves. 

I am becoming me. I am learning who I am at my core. Not who someone else expects me to be.

And I want this life that I lead, right now, to be the best one possible and if I can, one that does the most good to make this world a better place. And it definitely is a process of ups and downs and layers. And growth and regression and progress and mistakes. 

But it is mine.

So my word? 

Authentic. 

I am striving to be authentic in my life and my story and I hope to be able to allow other people authenticity in theirs. 

What about you? 

Thursday, January 5, 2023

Puzzles...The Joy of Reading


I love doing tile puzzles and finishing sections. 



This is a gorgeous puzzle. So fun. Good quality.


The Joy of Reading.
1000 pieces
Hennessy Puzzles

Friday, December 30, 2022

Пятница Ponderings: Remember

Ponder: to consider something deeply and thoroughly; meditate 
Пятница (PYAHT-nee-tsuh): Friday in Russian
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Gifts are wonderful things. To receive something that someone has given you is a blessing. My husband has given me some lovely gifts over the years, but my favorites are the ones where he has "remembered". He has remembered something I've said, often in passing.

For Mother's Day one year, he surprised me with tickets to see Mikhail Baryshinkov dance. Something I never thought I would be able to do. But he listened and he remembered and when he found out that Misha was going to be dancing at Cal Berkeley, he moved heaven and earth to get tickets and surprise me. Still one of the best experiences of my life.

He gave me a gift subscription to Rosetta Stone one year, because I had mentioned I wanted to learn Russian again.


This year, my favorite book I read was Remarkably Bright Creatures by Shelby Van Pelt. It's a fantastic novel about a woman named Tova and an octopus named Marcellus. Run, don't walk and get a copy for yourself. 

I read and finished it on our anniversary trip to the Oregon Coast in October. He listened to me talk about it and he remembered. We visited a little store in Manzanita, Oregon and they had a stuffed octopus. I said, "He looks like Marcellus, from the book!" But, I didn't buy him. And I came to regret it.

But, my husband remembered. And he searched and found another Marcellus.

And this month, for my birthday, he gave me Marcellus. And while he gave me some lovely gifts for my birthday and Christmas, Marcellus stands out, because he remembered.

I hope your holiday season has been one of joy. And I hope that you will listen and remember, and that others in your life do the same.