Things I Love

This was a writing “challenge” I accepted about five years ago…..

I gave it a whirl, although, I pretty much have eliminated “Hate” from my vocabulary; it seems too permanent a word and our thoughts and opinions change on things, even things we hate today.  

Hate feels like a very ugly word to me.

Things I Love

1.  F.A.M.I.L.Y.   This may seem over-simplified but, by golly, these are the people in my life all the time in one way or another (physically or at least on my mind and in my heart).  They mean the world to me.  My grand-kids seem to have taken “Center Stage” in this realm; as young people they are so forgiving and non-judgmental.  If only we could be more like little kids in this manner.  They love me, from the inside out and could care less what I look like, etc.  Some say that grand-kids are the reward for not killing our kids but I must say, I love my adult kids just as much.  They have turned into friends.  Sometimes my daughters feel more like sisters now.  On and on…down to aunts, uncles, cousins….these are my roots.

 Nothing quite takes the place of the familiarity of family.

2.  “LOVE”  As a young teen, I fell in love with the wrong kind of guy.  He was the typical “bad boy” and like no one I had ever met.  My Uncle Earl, who was more like a father to me than my father, (parents divorced when I was a baby) said that I didn’t know a thing about real love and was only:

“In love with Love.”  

I see no better goal than to strive to live in a permanent state of being in love with love and life.

love

3.  WATER  I have quite a few blogs on my love of water.  A few of my water blogs that describe this deep love affair I have with water are found here: 

Why write anymore on the subject? These links cover it perfectly.

4.  NATURE  When I have been cooped up inside or running on full-speed too long to accomplish something that has to be done, after awhile I have to just go find a place of beauty amidst nature’s magnificence and dissolve into it.  To lose myself in something much bigger and more grounded than myself.  As I drive past mountain ranges on my way to the city, I have come to think of these edifices as sleeping giants who will someday awaken, shrug off their deep sleep and stand and be the Gods we do not see in their current disguise. (Just my private fantasy.)  Or, they also feel like comfortable, wise, old grandfathers; sure and steady….unchanging no matter what us mortals are doing to stir up problems with one another.  

I see God’s hand in nature, and I know I am not unique in this sensation.

5.  THE MOON  I love the soft light the moon sheds upon the earth through her various stages. From darkest black on a crescent moon’s night, where we can barely see the hand in front of our face, to the softer shadow of the full-moon which softens the rough edges of life.  The moon heralds the end of day and the time of rest and rejuvenation.  I am glad at day’s end to relinquish the duties and demands to another day and slowly unwind to my nightly ritual:  a movie and garlic popcorn!  

6.  MY BED  This next blog I wrote, falls easily on my “Love List”.  I have more to say about this and will add it very soon.

“Stay Tuned”

7.  A GOOD BOOK/MOVIE  Meaning something to “take me away” and at the same time teach me something about something I don’t know about.  I love historical fictions where the history is intact and is also entertaining.  Little bits of trivia one can pick up from a good novel.

8.  MUSIC  Ahhhh…what a song can do to us!  It can lift our spirits, put us in a reflective mood and become a time-machine taking us back to an exact moment in our lives as we recall a person who shared that particular time with us.  It’s just plain magic.

9.  ORGANIZATION    I am far from my goal of getting organized on all levels but at this stage of my life, this is very important to me.  To be organized makes life run so much more smoothly.  It also gives us a feeling of empowerment over our things as we clear out what is no longer useful or meaningful and creates way for what we need NOW to come into our lives.  I have written a little on this subject as well.

A Sense of Order:  I learned in a class once that a sense of order is a necessary thing for good mental health. What we’ve learned about Feng Shui and how important getting organized is; this is so true!

Feeling Stuck? A Siox term for getting “unstuck” is the phrase, “Hanta Yo” which literally means, “Clear the way.”

10.  MY FAITH AND BELIEF IN GOD  I am so grateful that I was raised in a home where it was just a natural thing to pray, go to church and appreciate all that we were given.  To learn from Biblical Stories about the outcome of the way we treated others and to believe firmly in a God above who cared about me.  There is so much comfort in knowing this.  

If only I could live by these principles:

Desiderata2

Things I Pretty Much Hate

I mentioned at the beginning of this writing I very seldom use this word anymore.  It just rubs me in such a horribly negative way.  There are certainly things I do not like and even abhor and I will list those things.  I prefer taking the teachings of the martial art form of Aikido that is strictly a defensive order of the martial arts.  The first time I heard of this was in a magazine article I just happened to pick up and it really grabbed hold of me.  It explained it in this way:  If someone attacks you, you look at it almost as if you are engaging in a dance.  There is no animosity on your part towards the other person.  You are confident in your ability to stop the attack of course but you have no harsh feelings towards this person.  This certainly can apply to the everyday confrontations we come across in our daily lives as well as an actual a physical attack.  Jesus said to hate (I think he used that word) the Sin but LOVE THE SINNER.  This makes perfect sense to me and takes away all judgement towards another human being, struggling with who knows what.

Using their (the attacker’s) energy against them, there are certain moves in Aikido to stop the attack and remain in your own, chosen, state of mind.  (To act and not react.)  I am striving very hard to stay calm in the face of someone else’s choice to live from a lower energy.  It’s very hard to not get sucked into the meanness of a battle, which damages both sides.  “Grace under pressure.”

I will attempt to list 10 things that I truly disdain…

1.  BULLYING  This probably tops my “hate list”.  I have seen it, not only from a child to another child, but when I worked in the school lunch room I was appalled at the ways I have seen adults humiliate young people over very trivial things.  Pettiness at its worst.  Then, the bully who does physical harm to another is beyond toleration.  

2.  MEAN PEOPLE    What more needs to be said here?  

3.  SPOUSAL ABUSE/CHILD ABUSE  Don’t get me started on this.  If anyone reading this falls into either the victim or the perpetrator; please get help.  Do not allow this to be something that is part of your life.

4. LOSS OF VALUES  I know a lot of people and religions are against R-Rated movies (a minority of people I’m sure)  but in my humble opinion, I always felt mindless movies are far worse. Remember the old days of the stupid sit-coms where someone had to look stupid to make someone else look good?  I think this is far worse and leaves me with a very empty, hollow feeling; more so than an R-Rating due to sexual scenes and/or violence; although, I also do not like over-violent movies and feel our kids are being fed both of these in huge doses, in real life and in movies.  

5.  PUT DOWNS  This goes hand in hand with things I have already mentioned.  What about taking an oath to try to lift others instead of putting someone down.  This is one of my favorite quotes:

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6. Goat Heads   Okay, since we are dealing with a non-thinking, feeling entity here, I will say I HATE Goat Heads.  These are little puncture weeds that if stepped on drive deep pain into the point of entry.  We had them profusely in our yard a few years ago, they are all over town in fact, and try as we may, we could not rid the place of them.  We would track them in the house, unwittingly, from our shoes then walking around barefoot in the house were constantly driving these little devils into our feet.  Every now and then, I would step on an exceptionally large one that felt like it had been dipped in poison!  Pulling them out hurt as bad as when they went in.  Ugh!

7.  POLITICS  Years ago I was too busy raising a family to pay much attention to politics.  I don’t know if it’s because I have more time on my hands now or that it’s practically impossible to escape the atrocities going on in the world of politics but this is another sore spot with me, as with most others who pay attention to the wastefulness we see in our government and the unfulfilled promises politicians make.  What happened when we, in the U.S., were a government of the people and by the people.  Greed.  Most politicians are in it for the wealth.  Crazy, America was built on the exact opposite principles of that and look what we have become.

8.  CONSUMERISM  We seem to be on a frenzy to buy, buy and buy more STUFF to clutter up our lives.  We are also living in an age where nothing is built to last.  In the “old days” it was unheard of to buy an additional warranty for products.  They lasted longer than we did.  I am weary of false advertising as well and it seems you really have to be awake and alert to avoid the shysters who are not happy with a base payment of something but must be instructed to see how much more they can gouge out of you.  I just had this type of experience at a “reputable rental car” agency.  I had to really stand my ground to avoid the way I was mislead into getting an upgrade that would have cost me $20 extra a day!  I just wanted a sensible, fuel efficient car to get around in for a few days.

As I mentioned, I wrote this about five years ago and so far, feel the same today as I did back then. One difference on this subject of consumerism, a new trend to lighten up and live a minimalist lifestyle is really catching on. People, as a whole seem anxious to get rid of too much stuff.

9.  MARKETING SEX TO OUR YOUNG TWEENS  We see this happening in the fashion industry as well as the toy industry.  Sex and Violence sells.   As parents and responsible adults, we need to take a stand on this and just say no.  I feel it’s one’s greatest job as a parent, to preserve their child’s innocence as long as possible.

10.  DON’T RAIN ON MY PARADE   I am truly disturbed by the naysayers who predict the worst case scenario in some new adventure or an attempt by someone else to do something.  It’s amazing what the human spirit is capable of, thoughts turn into deeds when fueled with enthusiasm and a feeling of seeing the thing as a possibility.  

“Those who say it can’t be done, need to get out of the way of those who are doing it.”

I have always struck out to do whatever vision I saw and knew in my heart I could do.  Don’t ruin others dreams.  You never know what someone may be capable of, even against all odds.

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Author: Mary Catherine

• Published writer that used to contribute a monthly article on any given subject to my local newspaper. I am no longer doing this and miss it. • Owned my own custom paint store, "Wild Woods". I called it "wall art" that consisted of murals, glazing, faux painting and also painting vinyl garage doors to look like wood or metal; usually copper. • Have had an interesting past 14 years living off the grid in a remote area in Southern Utah near the Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park in a progressive community that held many informative events with guest speakers, including a number of published authors, and hands-on exercises in various self-sufficient living. No longer living there. • I have another blog about grandparenting. This is a subject near and dear to my heart nowadays. *As part of "the sandwich generation", I was caught between helping my adults kids (usually with their kids) as well as caring for an elderly parent, my mother, who was suffering from dementia. I want to do some writing on the aspect of full time care givers to people with Alzheimer's as well. I feel I have learned a lot about this. ~ What a Juggling Act! Somewhere with all those balls up in the air, my own dreams had been put on hold for too long and now, after losing my mother just recently, and my grandkids in school, I hope to rekindle them. My husband and I are super busy doing major remodeling jobs on a house we purchased two years ago as well as extensive yard work. The house and yard projects, which include the restoration of an old cottage built in the 1800's that sits on the far, back corner of our three-fourths acre lot we own are keeping us both really busy. Amidst the ongoing projects, I try to squeeze in a moment here and there to work on my blogs. Creativity has always been an essential part of who I am and when I stop doing things like this, I feel like a robot mechanically moving around, just getting the necessities done. Art, Music, Writing, Gardening, Home Interior Decorating, Water Activities like swimming and kayaking are the things I crave and try to find time to do. We have to "make it a good day"!

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