Monday, 30 November 2009

Reflecting On Our Words - November

2009 is rapidly coming to a close....And what a year it has been! This year has been an extra special year for me, one I won't forget for a long, long time.

As many of you know four delightful ladies and myself decided to focus on a word for the year instead of making a New Year resolution. Our words have been our touchstones. They have reminded and encouraged us to live our lives more fully. It has been a purposeful journey written out loud!

For November we decided to reflect how animals/creatures give meaning to our words.

Coach's - word is ABUNDANCE and she chose an ELEPHANT

I have chosen the ELEPHANT as an animal depicting ABUNDANCE. Of course, it does have abundant size but it also lives abundantly. Here is what I found out:

Elephants cry. They express grief at the loss of another elephant. They exhibit behaviors that depict sadness, bowing their heads, lowering their ears, and pausing at the place where another elephant has died.

Elephants play. They express joy at seeing other elephants. They dance around, spin and twirl, and trumpet joyful sounds.

Elephants are helpful. They take care of each other and especially the babies in the group.

Elephants give back. Without intention of doing so, their feet make large depressions in the ground where water can collect and be a provision for other animals.

Elephants are social. They live in large family groups and communicate over long distances with each other.

In my quest for an Abundant life, I think these characteristics are certainly a start. Have empathy for others, find joy in play, care for others, give back to the greater community, and create a positive family environment.

Roban's- words are JOY and FAITH and she chose a DOG

I'm sure my choice of dogs to express the meaning of joy doesn't surprise those who know me. Both Scout and Maggie have a way of warming my soul, making me laugh, and filling me with heartfelt joy.

They are ALWAYS happy to see me. They do the silliest things that make me laugh out loud, yet they are attuned to the personalities and emotions that flavor our home....

Studies have shown that owning a pet can add years to your life. In fact, just petting a dog has been shown to lower blood pressure. And residents of nursing homes have shown a boost in mood and social interaction when a dog has been brought in for a visit.

My two dogs definitely bring joy to my home, to my life, to my family.

Julie's- word is EXCELLENCE and she chose a SWAN

My word for '09 has been excellence and after a bit of zoological searching, I finally settled on the swan as the emblem for my word. Swans typically mate for life and have strong family bonds. The male and female swans nurture and raise their cygnets together, developing their own 'tribe', if you will. The image of a swan has graced many a coat of arms, conjuring connotations of nobility and are seen as symbols of love and fidelity because of their tendency to form life-long bonds. Many fairy tales and myths surround the species, the moral of the tales often being the adherence to beauty and grace, even in the midst of difficulty and ridicule.

Plus, swans are just pretty to look at. They just are.

Which is perhaps not the most excellent reason to choose a swan as my symbol of excellence. But I also got to take a great picture of one down of the lake during the summer.

And that sealed the deal for me...

Annemarie's - word is DISCIPLINE and she chose an ANT

The ant has received a bad rap throughout history as a pest, a nuisance, an annoyance. While in Puerto Rico, I would often be surprised to find ants in my sugar, but no one else would be surprised. In Texas we are known for a more ferocious type, the fire ant - certainly not a little creature to be reckoned with.

While thinking about this critter, I began to realize the one thing no one has ever called an ant is lazy. When you see ants, what are they doing? Moving, carrying, building, preparing for whatever may come. If you destroy their home, the very next day they have set up shop just on the other side of the sidewalk. Which brings me to my story...

In a field one summer's day, Grasshopper was hopping about, chirping and singing gleefully. Ant passed by, bearing along with great toil an ear of corn he was taking to the nest.

Grasshopper tried to dissuade Ant from his work by inviting him along in his day of reverie, but Ant could not be swayed. He was preparing for the long winter. Ant tried to convince Grasshopper of the foolishness of his ways telling him he too should lay up stores.

Grasshopper was not worried about winter as he had plenty of food for now and continued to while away the hours and days leading up to the first snow at which time he found himself dying of hunger. Meanwhile, Ant and his family could be seen surviving from what was stored away during the good weather.


There are times when I would rather play than have the DISCIPLINE to stay at home and clean house or go to the grocery store and shop for the family. Sometimes I give in and later have to pay the consequences. Other times I pull myself together to get done what needs to be.

Over the course of this year, my focus on DISCIPLINE has led me to see the error of many of my ways - most of which I have tried hard to change. Of course being human and having the luxury of being able to go out if need be, I have not perfected this way of life. It is still something I strive to improve.

My word is BALANCE and I chose a DOLPHIN

One day a long time ago, I was watching a documentary about dolphins and something inside me clicked. I was well into my late 20’s and was watching the television as if I was glued to it. It felt as if I was in a mind-meld with the dolphins and it was too a point that I started to cry because on some spiritual level, I understood what these dolphins were saying. I just knew that the dolphin was my Spiritual Animal Totem, I just knew it!

The beautiful, graceful, sleek dolphin carries many messages for the two legged! A key to understanding because the dolphin meaning is connected with themes of duality. It has to do with the dolphin being both fish and mammal. It is both of the water, and an air breather. Ergo, dolphin symbolism talks to us about "being in two worlds at once." Indeed, the dolphin is a great conveyor of the concept of yin and yang.

It is playful, and is a reminder that time to play is a crucial element in walking in BALANCE. It moves through the water quickly and with great grace, ever moving with the flow. Dolphins tell us to move with the ebb and flow of life, and not to search for brick walls to smash into. To spend our energy fighting the current gets us nowhere. Being constantly at war with others, with our surroundings and with circumstances we cannot change, destroys the spirit, eats away at hope, and consumes the joy of life.

The power of the Dolphin is community in BALANCE.

"The animal shall not be measured by man. In a world older and more complete than ours, they move finished and complete, gifted with extension of the senses we have lost or never attained, living by voices we shall never hear. They are not brethren; they are not underlings; they are other nations, caught with ourselves in the net of life and time, fellow prisoners of the splendor and travail of the earth".
~ Henry Beston, The Outermost House, 1928

I'd love to hear what animal/creature YOU my friends in cyberspace would associate with your word.

Monday, 16 November 2009

New Portal To Understanding

Millions of words have been written and broadcast about the rise of religion around the world, but rarely included in the discourse is the most powerful new spiritual force of them all.

For hundreds of millions of people there is a new portal of understanding, a gateway to the world, a tree of knowledge, a believers' bible. The legion of believers grows with every hour.

They believe in Google!

The word suggests infinite power. It is derived from a mathematical term, googol, which means 1 to the power of 100. The two visionaries who founded the company called Google chose the name to signify their dream of harnessing the immensity of information flowing through cyberspace. They have succeeded. This year Google will process more than 180 billion requests of information. It has become the world's most powerful information company. It has a market capitalisation of $173 billion. And it sprang to life just 11 years ago in September 1998.

Google inspires awe. It has been able to harness the wisdom of crowds, the collective effort of many people acting independently of each other, on a scale never seen before.

Because of Google, our species' capacity and need for co-operation is evolving into a new and higher phrase of social organisation. We appear to be becoming more like a giant ant colony, a multitude of individuals with a collective brain, and a single wellspring, a super-entity which evokes power, action and belief.

"Sometimes I lie awake at night, and ask, 'Where have I gone wrong?' Then a voice says to me, 'This is going to take more than one night."
~ Charles M. Schulz American cartoonist, 1922-2000

I wonder how far technology will advance by the time Joseph reaches manhood - Dee Why Beach Oct 2009

Wednesday, 11 November 2009

11th hour, 11th day, 11th month

It's no wonder Australian soldiers were dancing in the streets of London.
The 11th November 1918 marked the end of the bloodiest war the world had seen, 'the war to end all wars'. Of the Australian population of 5 million, 300,000 young men went to the Great War. More than two thirds of soldiers were casualties of the war: 60,000 Australian soldiers died and 156,000 were wounded or taken prisoner.

What have we learnt from this 'war to end all wars'?

Not enough to bring peace among nations.

Wars and conflicts continue to create new graves with the same echoes of unrealized hope.

There is a Chris de Burgh song called "The Getaway" and these words which are part of the lyrics are so pertinent to my beliefs.

"We're sick and tired of hearing,
That the world is gonna blow,
So there's something we'll
do to the leaders
Before we go;

Let's stick'em in a room
together - Yeah!! -
And make them fight it out,
Until they see nothing from nothing
Will leave nothing at all"

I feel we will not end conflict until we have learned to cultivate peace in our own minds.

"I dream of giving birth to a child who will ask, "Mother, what was war?"
~ Eve Merriam

This is a photo from NASA Astronomy Picture of the Day 11th November 2009

"Today, in celebration of Galileo's telescopic achievements and as part of the International Year of Astronomy, NASA has used its entire fleet of Great Observatories, and the Internet, to bring the center of our Galaxy to you. Pictured above, in greater detail and in more colors than ever seen before, are the combined images of the Hubble Space Telescope in optical light, the Spitzer Space Telescope in infrared light, and the Chandra X-ray Observatory in X-ray light. A menagerie of vast stars fields are visible, along with dense star clusters, long filaments of gas and dust, expanding supernova remnants, and the energetic surroundings of what likely is our Galaxy's central black hole".

What an absolutely AWESOME picture!!!

Saturday, 7 November 2009

Corey Vidal - Friends

My lovely Texan friend Annemarie posted this youtube on my Facebook page today.....thank you muchly friend.


The guys name is Corey Vidal and what a talented guy this Toronto man is!

So now I dedicate this video to all my gorgeous blogging friends.
Have a very happy, safe weekend.....and keep smiling...keep shining!

Pom pom-pom, pom pom-pom (ping) (repeat)
(A Capella)

Friends sing together
La La La La
Friends do things together
La La La La
Friends laugh together
Ha Ha Ha Ha
Friends make graphs together
La La La La

Friends help you when you're in danger
Friends are people who are not strangers
Friends help you shift into a new place
Tell you if you've got food on you're face

Friends are the ones, on who you can depend
He's my friend, He's not my friend
Friends are the ones who are there at the end
He's my friend, They're not my friends

If you trip over I'll catch you're fall
If you break my dick, I won't break you're balls
If you get drunk and vomit on me
I'll make sure you get home safely

If you cross the road and a drunk struck you
And scrape you up and reconstruct you
I'll cheer you up if you're depressed
If you get murdered I'll avenge you're death

Friends walk together
La La La La
Pop and lock together
(Zzi zzu Zzi Zzu)

Me and him together
La La La La
Me and Jim forever

Friends go jogging at the track
Friends borrow money never pay It back
Friends do not let friends do crack
Friends go out and grab a snack
Friends drink beer in the sun
Unlike girlfriends they don't mind if you have more than one
Friends tell you when you're flys undone

My Uncle John had a special friend
They dressed a like, his name was Ben
I've never seen two friends like them
They we're very very friendly men

La La La La
Friends, Friends, Friends
La La La La
Friends, Friends, Friends, Friends
La La La La
Friends, Friends, Friends, Friends
La La La La
La La La La

"Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think. Christopher Robin to Pooh”
~ A. A. Milne English Humorist, creator of Winnie-the-Pooh, 1882-1956)

Wednesday, 4 November 2009


Des over at Des in Real Life posted this short film about communication by Australian director Patrick Hughes

I love the concept and with it's great execution and excellent music, I think it is outstanding and well worth watching for 12 minutes.

Grab a cup/glass of your favourite drink and enjoy the ride.

“The more elaborate our means of communication, the less we communicate.”
Joseph Priestley English Chemist and Clergyman, 1733-1804)