Don’t walk by without sticking your nose in it…

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Too often I find myself seemingly wishing my life away.  Maybe I’m not really wishing it away but I do tend to look forward to things I have coming up instead of enjoying living in the moment.  I always comment on how quickly time seems to be marching on when, really, I have created the staccato drum beat that I am marching to and have quickened my own pace.

Years ago, my parents used to listen to a jazz singer by the name of Cleo Laine.   Although countless hours were spent listening to her sultry songs and three octave range, the only song that I can remember with total clarity is her rendition of “Stop and smell the roses”.   Even now, I can hear the song in the recesses of my memory as the words hover in a balloon above my head.  “The sweetest flowers grow, and then they bloom, but one day they die.”   I need to have that song playing on a recurring track in my head so I can realize the moments that I may be potentially throwing away, the moments that I can never get back, the moments that I missed because I was too focused on what was coming next, the moments that the roses were in bloom.

I wake up every day – I have a few cups of coffee – I go to work – I am living.  But how much living am I really doing in my life?  Am I taking the time to appreciate the things around me or am I merely going through the motions with blinders shielding my eyes and completely negating the real things in life that are happening right in front of me?

It’s time to slow down, to take life as it comes and not wish myself into the rapidly approaching future.  It will be here before I least expect it and all of those moments that I could potentially have been creating memories will have vanished.  It’s not often that I buy myself fresh flowers, but yesterday I purchased a bouquet of flowers in anticipation of the post that I would create.  Those flowers are now displayed on the island in my kitchen and each time I pass by that vase of floral poetry, I pause and take a moment to put my nose deep into those blossoms and breathe deeply.

roses

(image credit)

As I sat in my living room last night, laptop at my fingertips, dog asleep at my feet, I gazed across my still snow-covered lawn at the beautiful sunset.  The mottled pink clouds scattered across an otherwise clear sky and reminded me to pause and absorb the beauty of the moment.  Soon, that rose-colored sky would disappear and the true night sky would be speckled with a spectacular display of stars.  With a glass of wine in hand and a blanket caressing my shoulders, I took refuge in the warmth of my living room and took the time to enjoy the end of my day.

All too often those moments fade quickly and we are left reflecting on the beauty and emotion of what was, when we should embrace that beauty and those emotions as they occur.  Live in the now.  Stop and put your nose deeply into the petals of those roses and inhale the fragrance.  All too soon, those precious stems will be bare and we will be left with nothing but a memory of a flower that we once had the chance to enjoy.

 

Hey Pharrell, clap along….I found mine

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We all strive to be happy – in our homes, in our jobs and in our lives.  We yearn for success and money, but how many people take the time to consider what truly makes them happy?

Finding true happiness may not be as difficult as you think – you just have to be realistic about what makes you authentically happy, down to the core of your being.  Happiness is not a tangible “thing”, it is a feeling that comes from deep within.  You can be content with your job, and content with your surroundings, but until you delve into yourself and discover what makes you truly happy, you will never have that genuinely satiated feeling.

The definition of happiness is different for everyone.  The things that make me truly happy – a fine red wine, a perfectly cooked steak, the drippings from a roasted chicken, a good book, closing out the world and just writing – would make others shake their head in disbelief.  But that is my happiness.  And those things that make me sincerely content won’t break the bank (except the wine, sometimes) and are easy to achieve.

I am a simple person when it comes to happiness, but it has taken me many years to realize what the word happiness really means to me.  It does not come in monetary form, nor does it lie within anyone else.  My happiness lies within me and does not rely on outer influences to achieve that state of euphoria.

We each need to step back and really examine what is our true bliss.  Perhaps we have been looking in all the wrong places and the jubilation we strive for is at arms reach.  We owe it to ourselves to seek our true happiness and let other’s judgements be cast aside.  No one person, besides yourself, can define your happiness.  They may be able to contribute to the feeling but your paradise is yours to create.

Find your joy and breathe it in at every chance.  You will be happy you did!

A little dab’ll do ya

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Although this cute little catch phrase was originally used for Bryl Cream, it came rushing to the forefront of my mind when I passed a young man on his way into the grocery store as I was heading out.  He was wearing SO much cologne that I actually began to gag on the way to my car.  The scent permeated, not only my nostrils but, my taste buds and it eventually began to burn my throat.  It was overwhelming.  I guess he was never taught the old adage – a little goes a long way.

Little_Dab

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I may have a slightly tarnished view of this because I am allergic to perfume and cologne so any slight whiff affects my delicate sensibilities, but, even so, it was like watching the well-groomed version of Pig Pen from the Peanuts cartoon except the cloud was a film of cologne instead of his usual dust cloud.

I think Axe Body Spray for men, and any perfume or cologne companies for that matter, should adopt a new advertising campaign – commercials showing women and men running in horror from the noxious cloud created by those who don’t know when to say enough is enough when it comes to “dabbing” on that bit of fragrance.

For those of you fortunate enough to be able to wear your favorite scents, please remember – everything in moderation.  A little dab really will do ya.

Finding the hidden beauty

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invisible sunrise

The sun may be rising

behind a curtain of clouds,

but it is still grabbing onto the horizon

and pulling itself into our morning sky.

The beauty may be hidden,

the stunning colors may be invisible,

but the sounds of a new day

echo what we cannot see.

Life begins anew as the sun comes up.

It rises regardless of any obstacles

and we can still feel its warmth.

Its light through the clouds is proof that a new day has dawned.

Even though it may not touch our skin,

we know that holds a place in our day.

And though we may not be able to see it,

we have faith that its hidden beauty is there,

waiting for that chance to peek through the clouds

and shine on us again.

 ~

(image credit)

Two Hearts

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two hearts

Two hearts met again in heaven,

time and distance

could only delay their reunion.

Although they vowed to continue

on a journey to find love,

they only found the truest version

when their hearts found each other again.

Through spiritual realms,

their hearts still only recognized the other,

the one they had known,

the one they had missed,

the one they were meant to love.

Two hearts met again in Heaven,

and those two hearts,

are destined to meet

in each lifetime.

~~

Happy Valentine’s Day Mom and Dad

Getting to the root of the question

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I am a natural brunette, or at least I was a natural brunette until sometime in my twenties.  Like my grandmother, my hair started to age before its time and I began to notice more salt than pepper at the roots surrounding my face.  I have been dying my hair since then because I refuse to go down the path of “aging gracefully” without a hearty fight.

Someone recently asked me what my natural hair color was and, after I finished giggling, I responded with “I’m guessing somewhere between alabaster and egg-shell white”.  I still like to think the hair color that I have paid for on numerous occasions reflects the age I feel and not the age I should look when I am eighty.

When I was younger I remember  hearing the belief that grey hair made men look distinguished but made women look old.  Along with every other changing belief, this is an outdated way of thinking and there are many women disproving this theory at an alarming rate.  One stand-out woman who takes grey hair to a new level of sexy is this woman.

Jamie-Lee-Curtis-image-3

Jamie Lee Curtis is 56 years old, a mere 10 years old than I am and she looks absolutely stunning having allowed herself to embrace the natural greying process.  Since the length of my hair in the summer months is very similar to her pixie cut, I have been tempted many times to put the box of “natural” color back on the shelf and see just what color my hair really is at this stage in my life.  Somehow those ‘Natural Instincts’ make their way to the counter every time.

Maybe when I hit that magic number, the big 5-0, perhaps then I will be ready to leave the color in the box, but until then it’s time to put those gloves back on and keep fighting the good fight.

Put your heart to paper

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Valentine’s Day has always seemed, to me, to be so commercialized. Stores begin building their storefront windows with lavish hearts, teddy bears, cards and flowers to lure you into the belief that love comes with a price tag.  But Hallmark has gone above all of the tangible commissary items and done me in this year.  They have a new campaign that has me buried under a mountain of used tissues and it is simply wonderful.

It is easy to say ‘I love you’.  We can utter those words without really giving them a second thought when we are in a relationship.  But Hallmark asked several couples to describe their partners without using the word ‘love’.  The results are overwhelmingly emotional and the video below is only one of the couples interviewed.

I don’t have a lot to write today because every time I think of this video, I cry.  This couple is asked, after 56 years of marriage, to describe their partner without using the word love.  This is what every person in the world should experience.  A love that could swallow the alphabet a million times but not be able to form a sentence to do it justice with words.

Maybe my goal of finding that love is too lofty. But I call bullshit.  I’m not willing to settle for any less because this type of love should be felt by everyone at least once in their lifetime.   The type of love that simply makes you happy and makes you regret nothing.   The type of love that makes you crave that person every second you are apart and makes you appreciate everything that is different because it compliments who you are.  Sure it will never be perfect, but love rarely is.  Love is a struggle.   Love is about compromise.   And, at the end of the day, love is about knowing you are in the right place with the right person.

Damn you, Hallmark…..where is the tissue?