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It Sounds Like A Story To Tell It

If you knew our Mom, you would know that she was fiercely dedicated to making everything even. Growing up, our tradition was that when one of us had a birthday, the other one got a ‘little something’ too. Mom always made sure that we felt special, even when it wasn’t our day.

So it would perhaps come as no surprise that when my sister recently attended a breast cancer fundraiser, that she might win something because she put her raffle tickets into many buckets in the hopes of winning. But when she put her ticket in for number 92, without telling anyone, she said a little prayer and asked our Mom to let me (her sister) win something as I’ve had some health issues. My sister thought this basket looked like it belonged to me as it looked like our Mom. She scattered her other tickets in different baskets, including 95 as she’d always wanted a kindle…

As the gift basket tickets were being called, she was unaware that she won number 92. When her friend pointed out that she had the winning ticket, she went up to claim it and was startled to see that it was the exact basket she had asked our Mom to give to me. A few minutes later when 95 was called and it was her ticket that won, she began to cry and explained to her friend the story.

It was my sister’s birthday the other day. Hence the gifts, equally won, from our Mom to her girls. Even as I write this story to you, I know I am not giving it the justice it deserves because it’s so much more than just winning two baskets. It’s not even about the wins. It’s about the big picture in so many different ways.

It’s about my sister feeling our Mom heard her prayer. It’s about Mom showing that she’s listening. It’s about my sister thinking about me too when she’s at a fundraiser. It’s about the sharing of so many memories together that has so powerfully bonded us in times of strife. It’s about the tradition of giving, even when it’s not your birthday. It’s about inclusion, sisterhood, love and camaraderie. It’s about knowing that nobody else in the world has the childhood memories that we have, nor the silly stories, nor the experiences we’ve been through as we’ve traversed the adult journey into losing our loved ones.

It’s about believing that the veil is thin to the other side. It’s about everlasting, unconditional love which our Mom taught us. It’s about sharing. It’s about gratitude. It’s about kindness. It’s about so much more than I could ever have explained in a post.

So when we went out to lunch, after she shared the baskets with me and we opened them, each of us donned a necklace and smiling the whole afternoon, we enjoyed our time together as we do. As we waited for our table for lunch, we ducked into a small store and found a vase and flower to decorate our lunch table with Mom in mind.

A simple, yet elegant, white dahlia just like Mom. What a beautiful reminder of where we came from and how we’ve grown. Thanks for reading…

Shine On!

xo

Reason, Season and a Lifetime

A teacher is a candle who spends their whole life giving light to all of their students.

I never knew there was a World Teacher Day until I saw it on my calendar, so here I am. Because as a retired Spanish teacher, and a blogger who uses – SHINE ON – to end her posts, well, it was only fitting for me to write today.

Perhaps though I’ll go in a bit of a different direction. Because I think that the world is our classroom and all of her inhabitants are our teachers. Each relationship we have teaches us something else. We learn much from the people in our lives. That poem about reason, season or lifetime seems fitting at this juncture. We are blessed to learn something from each relationship we are in. I found this poem by Brian A. Chalker which I think explains it very well. Read on…

Reason, Season and a Lifetime


People always come into your life for a reason, a season and a lifetime. When you figure out which it is, you know exactly what to do.

When someone is in your life for a REASON, it is usually to meet a need you have expressed outwardly or inwardly. They have come to assist you through a difficulty, or to provide you with guidance and support, to aid you physically, emotionally, or even spiritually. They may seem like a godsend to you, and they are. They are there for a reason, you need them to be. Then, without any wrong doing on your part or at an inconvenient time, this person will say or do something to bring the relationship to an end. Sometimes they die, Sometimes they just walk away. Sometimes they act up or out and force you to take a stand. What we must realize is that our need has been met, our desire fulfilled; their work is done. The prayer you sent up has been answered and it is now time to move on.

When people come into your life for a SEASON, it is because your turn has come to share, grow, or learn. They may bring you an experience of peace or make you laugh. They may teach you something you have never done. They usually give you an unbelievable amount of joy. Believe it! It is real! But, only for a season. And like Spring turns to Summer and Summer to Fall, the season eventually ends.

LIFETIME, relationships teach you a lifetime of lessons; those things you must build upon in order to have a solid emotional foundation. Your job is to accept the lesson, love the person/people (anyway), and put what you have learned to use in all other relationships and areas in your life. It is said that love is blind but friendship is clairvoyant. Thank you for being part of my life…..

My heartfelt gratitude to all of you with whom I have been in contact, had a relationship, and learned from as my teachers. You have shaped my life in amazing ways and I am truly grateful for all of you.

Shine On!

xo

Good Thinking

I did not write this – but WOW does it speak to my heart!!! Worth the read.

“Barely the day started and… it’s already six in the evening.

Barely arrived on Monday and it’s already Friday.

… and the month is already over.

… and the year is almost over.

… and already 40, 50 or 60 years of our lives have passed.

… and we realize that we lost our parents, friends.

and we realize it’s too late to go back…

So… Let’s try, despite everything, to enjoy the remaining time…

Let’s keep looking for activities that we like…

Let’s put some color in our grey…

Let’s smile at the little things in life that put balm in our hearts.

And despite everything, we must continue to enjoy with serenity this time we have left.

Let’s try to eliminate the afters…

I’m doing it after…

I’ll say after…

I’ll think about it after…

We leave everything for later like ′′ after ′′ is ours.

Because what we don’t understand is that:

Afterwards, the coffee gets cold…

Afterwards, priorities change…

Afterwards, the charm is broken…

Afterwards, health passes…

Afterwards, the kids grow up…

Afterwards parents get old…

Afterwards, promises are forgotten…

afterwards, the day becomes the night…

Afterwards life ends…

And then it’s often too late….

So… Let’s leave nothing for later…

Because still waiting see you later, we can lose the best moments,

the best experiences,

best friends,

the best family…

The day is today… The moment is now…”

Shine On!

xo

Spinner Blessed My Sunday

Hi! I’m Spinner!

Good morning and Happy Sunday! I’m excited to introduce you to my date this morning. This 28 year old bay named Spinner was my companion on my early horseback riding lesson today. It’s been a few years since I’ve ridden, so it was back to basics for me and Oh, how good it felt!

I was told that Spinner’s a bit of a grumpy old man so we fit together perfectly because I’ve got a soft spot for those and apparently he had a soft spot for a heart-monitor wearing open heart surgery survivor who’s trying to get back in the saddle slowly after a few years of being away…What a win win for me!

I have to tell you, I had butterflies this morning. It’s been a few years since I’d been back to the farm. But the smell of hay and horse felt like nostalgia to me and although a bit nervous, I was calm. Because it felt grounding and centering as horse healing does. I’d forgotten what magnificent creatures horses are and especially I’d forgotten how BIG! I couldn’t even brush the top of his back because I’m too short, but we did the best we could. He was pretty patient with me, only showing his grumpy side a few times and more to my teacher May, than to me. I think he instinctively knew I needed kid gloves today especially. They’re so intuitive! Who could blame him though because I’d interrupted his relaxing morning with a lesson?! Big smile..

It’s interesting to me because in my head, it’s all so natural to ride and yet, when I’m there, in reality, I’m nervous which is why I keep coming back to riding. Because I want my imagination and reality to merge, to blend, so that I am riding with more ease. Of course, I’m always looking to soak up that horse healing energy!

I’m so much more aware of my body when I’m on a horse. Aren’t you? That was another one of those revelations as May led us around the outdoor arena. I’d forgotten what it’s like to ride, to sit up tall, to hold the reins, butt in the saddle and feet angled in the stirrups (heels down). To be so high up off the ground is surprising too! (Maybe that’s a short girl thing?)

We worked on steering (not sure if that’s the right vocabulary word?) while in the outdoor ring. It’s been awhile so I was a little rusty. I remembered how to hold the reins, but the nuances were buried. They’re getting unearthed now though! After awhile, May took us on a riding tour of the farm which was awesome too. To be relaxed, on horseback, seeing the ponds, the deer, the other horses, the barns, the trails, to be outdoors on a cool day…just magical. Truly. Magical.

So, Happy Sunday everyone…mine started out beautifully and I had to share with you because, well, we have to count these small moments of triumph even if they don’t last long. They deserve to be heralded a little bit because they count.

We all count…Thanks to May and Sasha for their infinite patience with me as this next chapter unfolds. You’ve heard horses are healing, but to experience that healing is beyond words…I feel a lil’ teary as I write this (sorry for the long post), but I’m feeling very grateful and very blessed.

I hope you have a lovely Sunday too…

Shine On!

xo

Emergence

I want to introduce you to my dear friend Iris, by way of her blog which you can find here! While she’s not on WordPress like the rest of us, she’s got amazing insight to share and her post today had me immediately writing one to present her to you because I feel many of you will resonate with her messages.

The post I am referring to is titled On Loss, but after 9/11, perhaps it’s fitting that it should be now. (Fitting, the southern term – my Mom or her family must be around!) – because you know the veil is currently thin with the full moon in Pisces and six planets in retrograde etc. But alas, I get off subject…

What came to me after reading Iris’ post was: a deep harkening to the soul…be present it whispers…be grateful…take the time to listen, to hold sacred which is just what I’m planning to do today.

Many of us have suffered losses. I have many loved ones who have passed away and their love stays with me in the deepest part of my soul. Tucked away like a small reminder of what once was. A treasured memory now almost dusty, but still warmed by my soul’s affection for and with them.

Iris has another website as well so you can really get to know her which is thelightanddarkofday.com As someone who has benefited from her gifts, I can heartily recommend booking a session with her as she is warm, inviting and full of inner wisdom which radiates within us. Please tell her I sent you if you should decide to reach out to her. She can let you know what session would best benefit you. She’s been a dear friend to me, as well as an insightful companion and mentor. Her understanding of our world and its creatures as well as the humanity and heart of all that beats within is incredible. You will find yourself grateful for the gift of Iris as I do.

Shine On!

xo

Do You Have A Teddy Bear Story To Share?

I never knew there was a National Teddy Bear Day, did you? Well, it’s today which means I have to write about it! Because I still have my original Teddy Bear – aptly named Teddy – who looks all of his age plus a few decades. Yes, he has been loved that much over the years! Then, I have his sibling named Tedriana. Tedriana was made with much love by my Mom who decided one year to make my sister and me matching teddy bears as Christmas gifts. I have to ask my sister if she still has hers!

There’s something quite charming about a Teddy Bear, don’t you think? While mine doesn’t look very pretty anymore, as he’s lost all of his hair, I don’t care. He’s very special to me and I can’t get rid of him. I don’t sleep with him anymore (obviously), but I will confess that he holds a special place in my heart and if need be, I would hold him for comfort. So far, I’ve been able to resist, but knowing he’s there is helpful.

What is it about a Teddy Bear? Is he part of the comfort of childhood? Was Teddy the friend when you were younger whom you trusted to tell your secrets to? Who was always ready with a hug to calm you? Did you even have a Teddy? Or was your comfort stuffed plush a different animal or a precious blankie?

Come on…spill your secrets to me, please! Don’t be shy…I’m sure your Teddy or Tedriana would love the notoriety on this special day!

Shine On!

xo

Two Hearts

I watched a movie on Netflix called Two Hearts. Have you seen it? While I don’t want to give away the story, nor the plot in case you’re interested, instead I’ll give you my takeaway from it. Because I cried while watching the movie because it hit home a few times.

“Life is short,” is a line we’ve heard time and again, but until we’re in that position of loss or grieving, we sometimes forget that nobody knows how long any of us have here on Earth. In an instant, circumstances can change dramatically and we are left without warning. Having lost many loved ones, I understand this, as you probably do as well. It isn’t easy when someone we love passes away, nor when we are battling an illness that makes life uncertain.

Regrets for words left unsaid or for those harshly delivered makes healing harder for those left behind. Focusing on the smaller annoyances and not seeing the bigger picture also play into guilt later on. Seeing the good in people and voicing your loving support is important – to the giver and to the receiver. Unfortunately, this may be a lesson learned a little too late for some people.

So here’s my gentle reminder – remember to reach out to those whom you love and cherish. Show your loving support so that you know that they know how you feel. Be mindful of how much of a difference you can make by your loving presence in someone’s life. We are all connected here. Plant seeds of kindness and watch them grow. Understanding and love are like Miracle Grow to people as they bloom when the supply of support, love and patience are delivered daily like sunlight.

Shine On!

xo

Sunday Blessings

The Presents of Presence-6

Happy Sunday!  I hope your day was filled with love, peace and goodness!  I stopped by a local farmer’s stand today and purchased the flowers above.  Does anyone know what type they are?  Are they zinnias?  The pot contains light pink, dark pink and orange blooms which just looked so perky to me that I had to get them.  The best part?  They love full sun which is key for me and they were on sale!!  Don’t you love to help out the local Mom and Pop stores and get to bring home a pot of sunshine to your home?

Well, at least that’s how I feel!  But that wasn’t the only blessing I enjoyed today.  I braved going to the grocery store to pick up a few items and while I was there, I observed a man, probably in his early thirties, staring blankly at the feminine products on the shelf.  So I approached him because he looked befuddled.

“Do you need any help?” I asked as I walked up to him.

“Yes, please.  I need to buy unscented, heavy pads with no wings.”  He pointed to the array of products on the shelving, “But I am not sure what is what.  Can you help?”

“Of course,” I answered him and we began looking to find what he needed.

“My wife sent me.”

I smiled and told him what a good husband he was to go to the store for her.

“We found out she was pregnant on Friday at the doctor’s office, but now she’s bleeding.”  He looked at me with a forlorn look and I just wanted to reach out to hug him.

“Have you called the doctor?” I cautiously asked.

“Yes, but she can’t see him until tomorrow.  It’s our first and we’re a bit scared that she’s already losing the baby.  I mean, we’re not sure, but…”  His voice trailed off.

“Well, then let’s get these pads for her now so you can get home to be with her,” I answered and found exactly what he needed.  I took the package off the shelf and handed it to him.

“Here you go.”

“Thank you.  You are my angel.  I couldn’t find the pads that fit her description.”

“I’m glad to help.  I’m sorry to hear about what you’re going through and I hope that all is ok for you both.  I will keep you in my prayers.”

“Would you really?” he asked as his eyes looked a bit teary.

“Yes I will.  I’d be happy to do whatever I can to help.  I wish you both all the best.”

“Thank you.  You were really nice.  I needed that today,” he said as. he looked straight at me.

“You know what?  So did I.”

As he turned to leave, I thought of the Sunday blessing we’d just had because two strangers bonded for a moment in a grocery store.  Life is full of little opportunities that drop in unexpectedly and we never quite know how a momentary kindness can help someone else.

So that’s why I called the post, Sunday Blessings because he made me feel good to help him and to add someone else to my prayer list.

Shine On!

xo

Angels Walk Among Us

Throughout my lifetime, I have been blessed. I know this and I don’t take it for granted. In fact, I want to celebrate it so that you can see it in your lives too! Because when we see with a grateful heart, we understand that we are never alone. God sends us angels in all different forms to help us along the way. Strangers who become friends. People who go out of their way for others whom they don’t know. Information and synchronicities that come out of nowhere that are the key to unlocking certain situations. Wisdom that’s shared simply because it will help someone else. Do you see what I mean?

These human angels walk among us. Have you ever wondered how you got the right person on the phone when you were trying to fix something? Or noticed a stranger in line at the grocery store doing something so kind and it makes your day? Have you ever been nudged to reach out to someone to help them? Why, that’s God’s way of expanding his angelic kindness through us!

If you’re not a believer in God, but perhaps in Mother Nature’s infinite wisdom or the Universal Laws or something else, I feel as if it is all similar when we connect with kindness with others. Can you feel it?

Since the start of this next chapter with my heart, I have met so many angels along the way that it’s been amazing. The Divine Timing of our meet cutes has been extraordinary. But I know (big inner smile) that there’s a soul plan here at work. It’s not by chance most likely. It’s got more of an angelic feel to it and I am relishing in all of it.

For when we are grateful, when we acknowledge the blessings, we open our hearts/minds/souls to more of the same. When we receive with grace, we can also give out and flow with the loving energies that are so healing.

Not just now, but throughout my life, angelic humans have made their presence known to me, helping me when needed in extraordinary ways. My sister and I have had many of these experiences and we are so grateful to continue to have them. We marvel at each encounter which solidifies our thinking.

So I hope that if you are nudged to get out of your comfort zone to connect with someone else that you will not hesitate. Sometimes we are the catalyst for joyfully changing someone else’s life and that’s the best feeling ever! For those of you, who like me, have been the recipient, let’s continue to pass it along, spreading kindness and love with each personal encounter.

Our world aches to grow in love so let’s feed it! Keep shining your heartlights for we can see them!

Shine On!

xo

A Fluttery Heart

I’m more aware of my heart these days which is pretty fascinating since it’s been with me my whole life. Right? I mean, are you aware of your heart? Or of your breathing? Because they are working 24/7 365/6 days a year, non-stop to keep our human selves alive. We can’t go on without either one doing their jobs, but how much are we really aware of them?

I can say, I wasn’t really aware until now. As I sit here writing, I can feel my fluttery heart beating in my chest. Even though I’m seated in my new recliner for the moment, my little heart is fluttery which is how I describe this feeling of it beating out of my chest for no reason. It’s not like I’m exercising or anything, and still, it’s making itself known. That’s a good thing as I don’t want it to stop anytime soon!

Because I wear my heart on my sleeve. I always have. That and every emotion shows front and center on my face. I’ve been told that you can read me like a book and I guess it’s true because I don’t have a good poker face. I don’t like to hide how I feel because that’s not how I’m made. I’m more of a let it all out type of person which may or may not help in certain life situations. But it is what it is…and I am who I am. No excuses. No guilt. I’m me. Take me or leave me. It’s ok now. I’m at peace, finalmente.

This whole-hearted experience has changed me, enriched my life emotionally, spiritually and for the better. There is a peace which has emerged from within me, sprouting up like a tender flower stalk and blossoming with showman spirit using all the courage she can muster. It’s like a ‘ta-da’ moment, arms raised in victory, that I’ve gotten to this very place of loving myself and not being afraid to fearlessly give out love, shine my own heart light and enjoy every sparkle of love given and received. Not that I haven’t always quietly been that way, but now, more than ever, the fluttery heart demands her presence known everywhere I go. I’m smiling as I write this because it’s as if I’ve always known I would come to this – a surrender, a delivery of who I really am and an embracing of my authentic self with all of my strengths and weaknesses, without excuse, without fear, and with love and acceptance.

I love the way the Soul works. There’s a divinity in the perfect timing of all of this even though I haven’t figured out how/why/when. What I do know is that there’s no such thing as coincidence. There’s a plan here and I am grateful to be a part of it.

So I’ll embrace my fluttery heart and allow it to lead me without question, and to shine without reservation. Can you see my heartlight?

Shine On!

xo