In The Nut Aisle

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There is the occasional time when discouragement slithers in under the guise of common sense, and hisses, “Sorry babe, it ain’t ever gonna happen!”

Such a weight of deflated dreams descended on me for no particular reason last week, right in the middle of  grocery day.  Feeling grim and bereft, I tossed items into a supermarket cart, and wandered around until I found myself looking at this enormous fabric creature perched on a stack of plastic storage bins –

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Smile …

 It  didn’t belong where I found it.  Someone had set it down there,  just in time for me and my mood.  The red heart and goofy smile felt like a love letter of reassurance. My spirits rose.  Cart and I continued on and rounded a corner.  The caption on an outsize shirt shouted  –

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The load of doubt dissolved and I smiled in spite of myself. How could I help it when the very space around me seemed to conspire in my favour?  [My friend, Rosalyne, calls this phenomenon Universal Synchronicity.)

It’s amazing how a single special moment can

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My mum used to say, 

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Look at this –

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Never too old …

Radical, thrilling!

IMG_20151217_095934that


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I wouldn’t be able to bear it.


I took this picture last week – 

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, chuckling at memories of a friend who once told me her family tree was composed entirely of fruits and nuts!  I grinned and remembered a recent moment at the bulk food store, when I unintentionally eavesdropped on a brief conversation.

“Could you tell me where the hazelnuts are?” a man asked.

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, sir. In the nut aisle,” the assistant replied. 

My mind boggled as I began to visualize the faces I’d find on the shelves of the nut aisle.  

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Who??

 Pretty much anyone who thinks

Normal is boring!
Normal is boring!

  , I suppose, and that would include me, for sure!


There are three kinds of people in this world –

(1) The IMG_20160318_112602706_HDR(2) The non-dreamer

and

(3) The dream-killer

  • The dreamer – that’s you (if you’re a nut!)
  • The non-dreamer – the one who  regrets his inability to dream big crazy dreams, and might enjoy living vicariously through you
  • The dream-killer — the practical, down-to-earth sort of person who feels duty-bound to tell you that it’s time to grow up and stop wasting your time.

Here’s the deal – _20150709_210453

Of courseIMG_20160306_194453

and believes in the dream.

Dear fellow nut, do you know you have a

_20150601_161507

IMG_20150829_141934

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 Of course,

_20150710_101223

so _20150513_184057

and 

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Above all IMG_20160223_113111

_20150423_190234


So …_20150428_144734

_20150618_150842

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At the end of life’s journey, I want to be able to say,
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_20150709_222614

Well –

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_20150610_172835IMG_20151101_231727

 

IMG_20151020_122322

IMG_20151101_231402

IMG_20160101_173732


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, but big or small

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A toast to all the dreaming nuts (and fruits) out there –

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IMG_20160319_103212

_20150324_184251

 

sincerely

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The Famous Grouse

 

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–  me again!  It’s been a while …

 Something’s changed.  I can’t put a finger on it.  Words like these –

_20150621_143956

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 bring on a  half-guilty sigh.   I’ve wondered why.

 There was once a time when

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would have been a sublime goal and aspiration. Not anymore.

 Lately, I find myself planning a

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 meal and

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   I’ve grown weary of keeping the home_20150620_120107

, often reminding myself that

_20150710_162708

and it can wait.  (Unless

IMG_20150814_145326808~2, of course.) 

I can never cease to

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at all you

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who opt to

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to the exclusion of all else.  My family and home have been

_20150716_180041

of my life, and  I’ve cherished my role as

IMG_20150801_183607, and yet if felt like something was missing.  I seemed to be approaching

_20150716_201952, sort of

_20150716_202123

, you know .   I began to wonder if I needed to 

_20150713_200324

of the icing on the cake of my life – something that would make me come alive.

 I  voiced  my thoughts one evening at the dinner table.

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 ,” I announced.

 Parents often assume their

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and disinterested  in general.  To my amazement and delight, mine were listening..

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,” I went on. “I love words .  I

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 with them all over again when I wake up each morning. If I could

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with my words, and everyday for the rest of my life, then I think I’d be fulfilling my purpose. 

“So do it!” they said.

I was taken aback.  “Do what?” 

“If you have a 

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, Mom,  it won’t just dissolve and

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 , right? 

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. It’s

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So why not start a blog?” they said.

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,” I squeaked.

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 and

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with the internet.”

 

_20150710_164512 with you,” they said.   “We’ll help you find  your feet.  We’ll sort of be your

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We’ll teach you how to navigate the social media stuff … and stuff.

But you’ll have to_20150612_105139

–  the bulk of it, anyway, because

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So why not

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?”

“But

_20150716_202656 ,” I mumbled.

“Oh,

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, Mom?  Okay, how badly do you want to

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?

“Really badly …”

So

 

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for it, Mom!  But don’t

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just yet, okay?  (Muffled

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– the cheeky things!)

“What do I blog about?” I ventured.

“You always have

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. Mom.  Write about your

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, about

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or just

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,” they said.  “Use the pictures you keep taking.  And whatever you do, Mom, don’t

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and

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.”  I became

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Suddenly, I was

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“Okay,” I said.  “I

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there’s aIMG_20150724_205245373_HDR

for everything, and

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From now on I’m going in

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– I’ll

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and I

 

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And thus began a journey.

Dear reader,

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of my list  below –

   –  (1)  Be IMG_20150801_185557

             because

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  • (2)  _20150709_221852

 

  • (3) IMG_20150814_230618

     –  (4) 

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(four times over, and then some more)

  –  (5)  _20150712_162605

 – (6) IMG_20150716_122030891_HDR

  • (7) 

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                                                                             …   xx   …   xx   …

 

 There’s_20150503_132608

 in the dream department.

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…   xx   …   xx   …

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…   xx    …   xx   …

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Brake For Butterflies!

Oh

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 there!

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                                                                                                                     !           

It’s me again … 

I’m in the parking lot with a cartful of groceries when I see this bumper sticker  –

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I whip out my phone and click.  (How could I not? 🙂 )

Okay –

_20150620_120905

_20150620_121715

                                                                                                           wondering where this is going, right?

 I jotted down some thoughts to share.   

Yes! 

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I resort to  paper and pen.  (If you’re under thirty, don’t judge those of us who do –

_20150620_121017

_20150620_121101

                                                                                                            )

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… got distracted!  Sorry, where was I? Oh, butterflies …

 

                                        I

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to

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at myself.  I asked – 

Is it possible to

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   and still

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 from life’s knocks?

How can you

_20150623_101616 , no matter what the circumstances?

 How do you measure

_20150428_141718                                                                                                                          ?

_20150620_135758

anyway? 

I know I’ll never be the

_20150620_121419  , a _20150615_173042

_20150620_115759 , or a 

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.  Who cares if I’m not

_20150617_160457

 and

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?  I don’t yearn to

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 at the best restaurants, nor do I  seek

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all the time. 

This I know, however.  Each new day is a 

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  – not just the

_20150620_121837

 –  but every moment of my life,

_20150623_101502 

.  Of course,

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bonus.

How wonderful not to always have to

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.  I’m happy as I am, though. 

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or not, I don’t

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than I have.  I  know I’ll never be

_20150617_154611 , but I can be a

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.  I can make

_20150614_142155

to be

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 – because this is how I feel inside.

 So what sort of 

_20150617_144617

 brake for butterflies?

I’d like to think a butterfly-braker is someone who could live as if every single day is a

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, who understands that simple things are of

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 .  If you are

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 –  and we all do from time to time,  because often

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                                                                                                                   –

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 the precious things.  

Love, faith, family, friends

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 and if these things are yours,

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 Are some words hard to say?

  • I’m sorry. 
  • I need you
  • I miss you
  • I love you 

Say them as often as the need arises.  And then some more.

_20150620_132410

 can turn an entire situation around.

 Do you really believe that success can be measured by the

_20150617_160053

 piled up in a bank account?

How could you ever know

_20150618_162125

 the glittering façade of a life that looks 

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              on the outside?

_20150603_184346

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So

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_20150716_201526_20150716_202419

_20150314_151016

_20150610_172522(1)

  .  Be

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to be turned

_20150618_161937

by unexpected serendipity.

Tell yourself each morning that

_20150513_184316

 

It’s not all about possessing stacks and

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of stuff, you know.

Take a minute to

_20150618_161740 and breathe slowly.  Just think –

_20150618_162145

and

_20150618_162311Only once.  But …

You can make the choice to feel young for as long as you live and be

_20150618_162516

with each passing day.

Age is only a number, I tell myself.  What counts is how I feel inside, right?

 

_20150620_122901

 _20150617_160441

You have only one life to live.

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 it with all  your might!  

Brake for butterflies.

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Dance under the stars. 

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Hold hands.  Smile a lot.

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_20150526_181712

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And always remember … you’re never too old to dream!

Someone To Believe

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 “There’s no emergency contact in your file, ma’am.  Could I have a relative’s name?”

 “I’m the only one left. They’re all gone.”

 All gone?

I’m at the local hospital for my annual mammogram and bone density test.

(Oh, by the way

_20150515_194237

… I’m a grateful breast cancer survivor.  Seven years.)

The perplexed secretary persists. “How about a friend?”

“All gone,” the old lady replies.  I exhale when she adds, “I can give you my husband’s name and number.”

The secretary is as relieved as I am.

I find a seat and await my turn. The words scream in my head –

 All gone … the only one left …

 How awful. 

What happens when the husband goes? 

Has she outlived her children? 

Did she have any? 

Not one friend?

Awful.  Awful. Just awful.

I lean back and close my eyes for a moment.   Faces come crowding into my mind.  My heart swells with gratitude. 

The random digital clicks on my mobile phone provide me with a gallery of pictures that inspire the ramblings on this blog.

This one

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reminds me to  be thankful for the people in my life who might think I’m a little weird, sometimes outright crazy, but still believe in me. 

They root for me.  They encourage me to

_20150513_182754

 They cheer –

_20150506_123957


_20150515_193004

 

– and shower me with

_20150506_123837

when yet another door seems to slam in my face.  They give me a reason to hang on, keep dreaming.

I am thankful for those who believe that

_20150513_182725

 

This is my prayer for you, reader – and for myself, of course!

_20150515_193438

 Because

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                                                                                                                                      Amen.

So

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Just think –

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Because it’s 

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                                                                                                                                   you know!