Saturday, January 28, 2017

No News is Good News

They say no news is good news, and that’s often true. I usually don’t hear from our kids while they’re at school, but one of them called home one afternoon. Imagine my surprise when a calm voice said, “Hi. My school is on fire.” After some explanation, I discovered that everyone had been safely evacuated, and in fact, the school wasn’t on fire. The smoke originated from something near the school. Crisis averted. Life returned to normal as the students marched back inside.

It’s a good I could receive that call. Accessibility for emergencies is good, but non-stop accessibility is not. We’re constantly connecting to people and digesting news feeds through our electronics. Regularly disconnecting from it all allows us to find our happy place. Maybe yours looks like this:    


It’s hard to tell who enjoyed the situation more—the shoveler or the spectator. If you’ve found a different kind of happy place, how do you get there?


Saturday, January 21, 2017

In the Name of Change

 It feels like change is in the air. You know it’s true when you see toys upgraded. One of our kids brought home a Bop-It that comes complete with a host of new instructions like, “drink it,” “comb it,” and a little extra sass. The latest Easy Bake oven, celebrating fifty years, looks ultra-modern, comes in assorted colors like white, purple, or black and bakes WITHOUT a light bulb. When did the bulb disappear? Even Monopoly made the news when the manufacturers decided to change the player pieces and solicited ideas for new pieces from the games’ fans. How will we survive without the car, the shoe, or the thimble? Although long-time Bop-It players, bakers, and pretend real estate tycoons may question the changes, they needn’t worry. Watch how our perceptions mislead us:


Today’s toys look different, but companies stick with the essentials, the rules remain the same. Bop-It still gets bopped, food still slides through the Easy Bake oven, and players still buy properties in Monopoly. Before reacting to things we see or hear, it pays to focus on our own fundamental essentials. Regardless of any changes surrounding you, what do you plan to continue doing?  


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Saturday, January 14, 2017

May We All Know

We’ve been naughty. During the past several months, I’m certain we’ve discarded  enough plastic water bottles to build an additional room on our house. Barring the instability and lack of privacy, imagine how pretty it would look with the sun reflecting through the plastic walls. I don’t know who thought of bottling and selling water, but they’re earning a fortune and creating an environmental mess. Check out the creative clean-up:    


This guy’s taking proverbial lemons and making lemonade, going above and beyond what you would think you could do with a water bottle. Still, despite the awesome ways  people can minimize the impact of plastic bottle on the environment, we need to reduce their usage. The end doesn’t always justify the means. What have you done that ended well, yet in hindsight, you know you shouldn’t have “gone there” in the first place?

Friday, January 6, 2017

The Big Clean-Up

Is everybody sick? Not mentally, I mean physically. I know of at least six people who are either getting, suffering, or recovering from cold symptoms. Several factors contribute to the rise in illnesses. First, the weather is iffy. One moment it’s sixty degrees, and an hour later it’s forty degrees. That’s not a fun situation when we’re caught outside without the appropriate outerwear. Second, warmer temperatures help germs to linger, giving us more time to be infected. Third, the back-to-back holiday celebrations brought guests  together, facilitating the spread of germs. Check out these unwanted guests:

Nothing like a strong visual image to encourage cleanliness. Doesn’t that video make you want to wash your hands, cough into your arm, and carry around a pint of hand sanitizer gel? We know whatever lurks on our hands can lead to illnesses, but so can worry, stress, depression, hate, and unforgiveness. So how do we cleanse our hearts and minds?