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Posts Tagged ‘joy’

      Want to be happy?  Live out loud, be who you are, conduct yourself with integrity, reach out to others, stand up to injustice, satisfy your soul, don’t allow yourself to continue to live with regrets or leave things undone; and, peace will be yours forever!  Words to live by.

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     Today has been one of those lazy, do nothing and enjoy it kind of days.  Those are few and far between…but, so very necessary for the soul to rest and build up strength to do what must be done every other day of the week. 

      It has been cold and wet.  We woke up this morning to a growing blanket of fluffy white snow…the first of the season, to lightly coat the ground.  Of course, it did not stay there because the ground is not frozen yet…so, the warmth of the earth melted the brilliant, white snow early in the day.  This is just a mini preview of what is to come in the next few weeks.

       The snow brought joy to my child’s face…and, a look of acceptance to mine 🙂  Now is the time to contemplate making a nice homemade, chunky sort of comfort meal…like maybe a hot, hearty chicken noodle soup with homemade dumplings…or maybe a rich, smooth, smoky pea soup, or possibly a filling fall harvest kind of soup with some happy orange carrots, and some limey green cabbage surrounding floating chunks of the all american staple of potatoes in a nice rich broth of ham pieces or some pieces of bacon. However, this is work…and, cannot stand alone.  One must complement the meal with some fresh- from- the- oven homemade doughy, buttery rolls.  This is the treat that we offer ourselves when the reality of 6 months of cold, wet, dark and dreary winter comes sneaking upon us.  Oh, if that sounds ominous…then you will have to come back on another day when the snow is cherished and given glory…just not today when i have to grow to appreciate it’s beauty.

       Golly, you will just have to check back in a few weeks, when i paint the picture of a cheery morning; when the snow crystals sparkle in the sunlight and underscore the weight of the evergreen branches that bow under the weight of the heavy flakes of snow that have fallen overnight, much to our surprise.  Then you will see that the human spirit is flexible and has the wisdom to recognize all of the gifts in life. 

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       This week another star has been released from the competition on Dancing With the Stars…that celebrity was Susan Lucci.  She started out dancing very stiffly at the beginning of the season.  By the end of her time on the show…she appeared to relax a bit and seemed to become more engaged with the joy of dancing. 

          It is not Susan’s fault that she is up against some very talented competitiors :).  However it was her time to go…become it is a competition and there definately are more qualified dancers that need to remain in the contest.  As always, Susan Lucci is a class act and says that she is greatful for the life experience of being able to dance on the show. 

         Who will be the next competitior to leave?  And, what kind of improvement and challenge will we see in those who are left?

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         Did you ever go to a wedding and just observe the Bride and the Groom closely?  Today, i did just that very thing.  Oh, to be sure…the Bride was beautiful and full of smiles; and she looked the picture of what a Bride should look like.  Youth, beauty, joy and excitement poured forth from her face as she, who is normally very shy, looked everyone in the eye and took her vows.  This was her testiment to her pledge of love and commitment.

          The Groom also looked young and full of love and pride in the bride of his choosing.  There were awkward moments in the ceremony…such as a very loud train rumbling by the church…just as the bride was speaking her vows. Then, they did some wonderfully, unique things in their ceremony.  They took communion during the ceremony which was lovely.  The poor bride got a larger piece of the bread put into her mouth by her groom; which took her several minutes to chew and swallow…which caused her to be somewhat embarassed and caused some good natured laughter in the crowd.

          Part of the unique ceremony took place when the bride was given in marriage by her father to her groom; at that point…the bride and groom took the elevated platform in the front of the church; and the minister then, came out into the congregation and stood with his back towards the back of the church…he faced the bride and groom; who stood facing the spectators.  This viewpoint gave the advantage of watching the bride and groom as they spoke their vows, lit the candles, and smiled into each other’s eyes as they whispered affectionetly to one another.  Then, the groom played the guitar while one of his groomsmen sang a tribute to their love for one another.

           All in all, it was a trusting, loving, innocent step into the future as husband and wife…not knowing what the future holds for them…just knowing that they were taking the beginning step forward, together!  Hopeful for a lifetime journey.

        

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       Sad news today for many baby boomers who will have strong memories of Bozo…the world’s most famous clown…Larry Harmon…one of the original marketing geniuses behind the image and licensing of the Bozo character has died.  I don’t have strong memories of Larry Harmon himself much as the portrayer of Bozo…although I certainly have seen him a bit over the years. 

        What is remarkable to me is that his development and contribution to the image and promotion of the character has brought a lot of joy over the years to many families.  I remember our own local Dick Richards, for WZZM TV 13, as our Bozo; from 1968 to 1999.   Everyone wanted to get their name drawn so that they could win prizes from the bucket bonanza! Thank you Dick Richards for giving of yourself so completely to your viewers.

          Dick Richards was always entertaining and certainly a big part of our children’s development in the western Michigan area. Children’s television programing never had it so good as when people were begging for tickets just to be in the audience for the taping of the Bozo show.   It was all due to the vision that Larry Harmon had to how Bozo should be marketed around the country. 

       I wish to pass along my condolences to the family and friends of Mr. Harmon and our thanks for all that he has given to the many children, whos,  hearts were lifted up by their time spent enjoying Bozo on television, making us laugh with his antics over the years.  Rest in peace, Mr. Harmon!

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       Girl Power rules on dancing with the stars.  Kristi Yamagucchi and her partner Mark took the championship.  They now have the winning trophy.  But class reins because Jason Taylor and his partner Edyta conducted themselves with style and grace and joy even for Kristi as she won the trophy.

         This season was pure joy watching this group of contestants as they competed.  They enjoyed each other and it showed.  Great job everyone.  Next time though, let’s pray that they cut down on how long the finale is.  Three hours of waiting for the results is a bit much!

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        For those of you who have been depressed, despondent, abused, neglected, suicidal, victimized or just oppressed; know this, the human spirit is subject to change at any moment…it is resilient.  The absolutely amazing thing about going through any of those difficulties in life, is that it has the potential of either destroying a person, or strengthening them, like steel that has gone through the heat of a fire. 

          What causes a person to either become submerged under the weight of negative influences; or, to spring up and bounce back even stronger ? 

           I believe it is a combination of things.  We are all products of our past; we have been taught many things throughout our childhoods and young adulthood that influences how we perceive things.  Most of those things are unconscious and basically invisible, but, still they are there; determining how we interpet the challenges in life; and, therefore, how we handle those same challenges.  We have to make a personal committment to ourselves to change the direction our lives are going if we wish to live a life that is full of the good things life has to offer.

          If we have been lucky enough to have a strong healthy foundation during those formative years we have a huge headstart.  If we were instead rooted in poor soil and unhealthy relationships during those years; we often have alot to overcome. 

          It is not impossible to overcome those things.  It is by strength of will and determination that we learn how to channel our inner self to go in the direction of love, health, and personal well-being.  It is a matter of retraining how we think about things and learning not to focus on the obstacles and the negativity that surrounds us on a daily basis.

          I was reminded of these things today, when i read about Elizabeth Fritzl, the young Austrian woman held captive by her father in a basement for 24 years.  She was forced to endure loneliness, sexual abuse, emotional damage and physical confinement.  She was raped repeatedly by her father and gave birth to seven children during this time.  They grew up without “normal” human interaction. 

        At this point they are receiving treatment in a  psychiatric facility.  The family is getting help learning how to bond together; how to communicate with others, how to function outside of their basement prison.  Elizabeth, the mother of the children grew up at home, with her mother and father…until she was 18 years old.  At that point, he forced her to live in the basement while explaining her “disappearance” to the rest of the world by saying that she had run off to join a cult.

          Elizabeth and her children are bouncing back in amazing ways.  One would think that they might never recover.  After all, some of them didn’t speak as we know speaking; they communicated with grunts and noises.  However, they survived against all odds.  Their healing and renewal will happen with good guidance and therapy.  It should be encouraging to us all that the human spirit is resilient; it is meant to sustain us in times of devastation.

            At some point in life we have to “choose” to overcome the negative forces that have gone before and “decide” to grow, heal, strengthen; and, claim victory over the things in life that hold us back from who we were created to be.   It is work, it isn’t easy and often professional help is necessary; but, it is so worth it to have the freedom to once again live life fearlessly, and fully, with joy!

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