Open Mindedness; Endless Possibilities 

Open Mindedness; Endless Possibilities

I have ALWAYS been that girl! The one that said yes to nearly every spontaneous act a friend suggested or I created. If I wanted it, I was willing to work very hard to get it, do it, or try it. Risk has not been a fear of mine. Even, I suppose when it should have been. From motorcycles, sailboats, fast cars, business ventures, decisions, travels, and relationships, new adventures were never far – around every corner, every turn, and even in my thoughts. Newness, it all equals adventure to me.

The same applies, most of the time in my friendships.  I find if I have few expectations, there are even fewer disappointments. I have always said, ‘judgement is intended for courtrooms.’ Being as nonjudgmental as possible fills me with freedom. Freedom to see beyond the surface, freedom to learn, freedom to feel, freedom to love, live, explore. Freedom to think and to wonder.

For me, open mindedness has afforded some of the best experiences of my life. It has also allowed me to find positive in what may have been negative situations; death of my brother early in life, my father, grandmother, love of my life, close friends and other family members that have passed on. Open mindedness and non judgmental behavior allowed me to deal better with unsuccessful business ventures, the painful ending of relationships, the near death experience of Dude, (my dog and bestie), and my children’s teenage years, their pain and sorrow, and my own teenage years for that matter.

Bev & Dude

Bev, a downtown staple: ‘I love Dude so much, he makes me so happy I cry’.

I wish EVERY day, every human being would at least once per day, think more of someone else, than they do of themselves and show it. That person you were just critiquing, criticizing, or giving ‘the eye’ to (?) don’t judge, we have no idea what’s happening in their life.

I am thankful for my disposition because it has allowed for endless diversity in my friends, creativity in my thought process, and crazy fun adventures!

I am California bound very soon. More than one person recently judged and stated, ‘how can you leave your family, I could NEVER do that’. Well, I’m not leaving my family. I am experiencing new. I want to see what I can see. They are grown. They will visit, I will visit, but mostly, I will continue with my adventures in life – of culture, humanity, mountains, ocean, sunshine and newness as I continue to age and life whips on by. My adventures, also allow for adventures with my children as they visit and explore new with their children!

Writer Julia George: You have a nomadic way about you….always ready and brave enough to move on to the next great adventure, leaving a trail of tears behind. California’s gain, Michigan’s loss.

I am open minded, who knows when and where I will end up.  If I can’t bear to be away from my family, friends, and the four seasons in Michigan, well, then I’ll be back sooner rather than later! I have done it before and may well do it again. I love that freedom!

Not all of my adventures are entirely positive, however if I can find SOME positive in what might otherwise may have been negative, I will continue to move forward and not look back.IMG_1270

Children rarely judge, and if loved and nurtured, every day is an exciting adventure for them.

Namaste to all!

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Street Lamps

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IMG_6942.JPGAlways the first signs
Spring, summer, fall and winter
Throughout the course
Our seasons
Red Robins
Hoot of an owl
Reminds me.
That one tree that sways,
Without even the hint of a breeze
Reminds me…

At night as I drive along city or country roads, the street lamp goes out and I say hello back to you. In my mind, clearly, there is no other reason for one single lamp to quickly dim other than for you to let me know that you’re watching over me.

How many people silently miss the ones that they’ve lost? It’s isolating. Not something we talk about or share with others. We like ‘happy’, not sad.

I wonder, will we be reunited with our lost loves? I like to think it will be one magnificent reunion. The thought soothes and makes me smile.

Julie, Lloyd, Alice, Steve, Gladys, Dad, Alan, Doug, Shirley, Normy, Richard, Dude, LisaIMG_6941.PNG

The Halyards Stop Singing

Michigan strong is a saying that lives up to its name. Northern Michigan summers are IMG_6609.JPGnearly perfect, with temperatures averaging seventy five degrees. Our lakes are refreshing on hot summer days. Bonfires can be seen, and smelled nearly every evening with voices of laughter and guitars in the distance.

Fall is beautiful with brilliant foliage colors of oranges, reds, and yellows. The fall sun provides a shimmer on the lake along with peaceful solitude in your heart that is difficult to describe.

Then, old man winter blows in with ice, sleet and inches upon inches of snow, with barely a glimpse of sunshine for days, sometimes weeks. While winter can be cozy, and the art that the frozen lakes, waves, trees provide is outstanding, the white knuckle driving, accidents and desolate feelings, leave even us Michiganders longing for flip flops, s’mores and the desire to be outside, more than in. Our winters make us appreciate the other three seasons.

IMG_6613-0.JPGTourist are fewer, summer residents are packing for their winter homes in warmer climates, boats in the marinas become fewer, docks disappear one by one and the sound of the halyards singing in the wind can only be heard occasionally on land, but for now, I’m staying Michigan strong.

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Eye Contact

Is there a greater intimacy
than to look into another soul
through the opening we don’t cover
like we do our naked skin?

Anyone can steal right in
through the sheer iris,
invitingly colored yet transparent
as colored glass.

Strangers trespass our private chambers
look around our bedrooms
go through our closets
read our diaries
unmask our lies

It all happens in a moment
the instant you let another
look you straight into the eyes.

– Clayton Boothe

My dear friend, Clayton Booth wrote this piece and I wanted to share it. Pause for thought…

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Just Lookin’ Around

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Homeless in the mountains

“We are the product of 4.5 billion years of fortuitous, slow biological evolution. There is no reason to think that the evolutionary process has stopped. Man is a transitional animal. He is not the climax of creation.” Carl Sagan

If I could reach out to all of those in our very vast land that are in transition and being challenged as a result of… ( it would probably include millions) I would encourage them to enjoy their freedom of looking around at the beauty that surrounds them in our people, places and things. It is so comforting to know that we can find it everywhere – even on the cloudiest of days. I consider this freedom a blessing AND sometimes, yes a challenge.

We ALL take for granted; our time, people, conversation, animals, earth, etcetera! We ARE human after all.

…Just lookin’ around and enthusiastically seeing what I see, even on the most cloudy of days.

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Grand Tetons – Wyoming ‘2012

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20130930-102842.jpg Montague, Michigan

They Don’t Look Anymore

After a wonderful dinner that included a heavenly margarita, my girlfriend and I stood outside in the parking lot talking about life. It was a crisp, sunny, fall evening and simply perfect for a female bonding conversation.

CC’s words had quite a lasting impression, as it is two weeks later and here I am pondering it.

We talked about online dating, men we have dated and also the difference in dating after the age of 40 and 50. My comment, ‘I prefer meeting someone for the first time in person rather than online. You have an opportunity to assess any attraction, watch their mannerism and of course flirt!’ CC’s comment; ‘Well, they don’t look anymore so I’m not likely to catch someone’s eye.’ Her statement made me think and also made me feel sad for her and the rest of aging singles. Sure, I don’t get the looks that I did while in my twenties and thirties, but when I was in my twenties and thirties, I rarely noticed and still rarely pay attention anyway!

I was born with an above average dose of self confidence, but still, the thought of not being attractive (both inside and out) to the point of not being noticed for the rest of my life (even via my award winning personality 🙂 ) leaves me just a tad bit anxious and feeling quite selfish. I have lived my life independently, yet with my choice of partners. I’m quite comfortable with who and where I am today, but do wonder if I will reach a point when I’m not.

My former Father-In-Law passed away a few days ago. They were married more than sixty five years and rarely spent a day apart. Recently and just one day prior to his death, his wife shared, ‘I haven’t slept separate from him in as long a time as I can remember. I am going to miss talking with him and feeling his body next to mine.’ She is nearly ninety years old and all I could think of, ‘They don’t look anymore.’

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C.S. Lewis’s Argument from Nostalgia

Beautiful and worth pondering…

Well Spent Journey

(or, “Why you sometimes feel like you can remember something, sometimes, from even before your childhood”)

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C.S. Lewis often wrote about (and alluded to) the sense of “nostalgia” that comes with beholding a beautiful landscape.

I’ve always thought that the Christian argument from beauty/awe/nostalgia is one of the most difficult to convincingly express, yet one of the most powerful when properly understood. It shares some commonality with the Argument from Religious Experience, in that it relies on personal revelation rather than hard evidence (historical & scientific data) or soft evidence (formal philosophical arguments).

Rather than relying upon another person’s (oftentimes unreliable) testimony, however, the argument from nostalgia encourages self-reflection by identifying a peculiar sensation – almost like déjà vu, or a lost memory, or a half-forgotten dream – that seems to be shared by most people. C.S. Lewis described this sensation as follows:

“In speaking of this desire…

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Speak, Dude!

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Most of us have them, want them or have had them… pets!

Right, we know – “a mans best friend.” There is no doubt or question, Dude IS my best friend and will go down in the history books as such. However, sometimes I am certain I am not his. What kind of a friend leaves you alone for hours, feeds you the same food every day, constantly asks you to stop talking (barking), doesn’t walk with you nearly as long as you like, (or too long) and can’t read your mind? A human friend, that’s who!

Recently and for the first time in Dude’s life of thirteen years, I have been working in an environment twelve hours a day and he can’t go with…I have however arranged a friend to come and hang with Dude for a couple of hours a day, and then I come home for lunch and we hang out. Trust me – it’s an adjustment for us both. I’m laden with guilt and Dude is sad and doesn’t quite understand.

Here’s a frustrating scenario that occurred this week, but let me first preface by stating it was already a tough week for me and Dude; I left for a needed road and hiking adventure out west for two weeks and this was the first adventure Dude was not able to go on due to his age. In addition, Dude lost another good friend, Shelby (beautiful Yellow Lab, due to old age of thirteen), I lost a friend (due to cancer), and I also started this temporary work leaving me stressed out!

Well, I get home from work and I can’t wait to hang outside on this beautiful afternoon with Dude and he was equally excited, pinning me down, giving me hugs and sprinting around the yard. We walked down to the deck for a few minutes, and upon calling Dude to come up and follow me to the house, he wouldn’t budge. He did however hold up his right paw and I could visibly see that he was trembling. Damn, bur in his fur again – so I thought. Upon realising that there were no burs, spurs, or other, I became concerned. I carried him up and into the house, inspected and inspected and couldn’t find a thing. By this time he was panting, wouldn’t hydrate and was obviously in pain. “SPEAK, Dude”. Where does it hurt and what’s going on?” I have to leave for work before the veterinarian’s office opens tomorrow morning, and they close in thirty minutes. Dude is a pretty tough dog – he rarely complains, and has not required an emergency visit to the doctor EVER. Arg – off we go to the doctor. While driving, I kept wondering, “could this be a bee sting, did he break a bone?” There was no yelp.

At the doctor: Fever, still not hydrating, miserable and clearly in pain, occasional tail wag.

Later at home: Eating, playing, hydrating, constant tail wag.

Speak, Dude! Had I known it was a bee sting you wouldn’t have been stressed by my stress, had to ride in the hot car, we could have hung outside longer and I would have saved $100 bucks!

I love you Dude…

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