I Can’t Even Put My Watch on Right

I Can’t Even Put My Watch on Right

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At least twice a week, I will throw on my watch, only to find that it is upside down when I need it.

At least once a month, my watch will show the wrong date. I can’t seem to get the stupid, upside down time piece to catch up with me.

At least half a dozen times a week, I walk into a room and forget why I was there.

At least a dozen times a week, I call one  of my children by the wrong name.

At least a hundred times a week, I forget my kids are little and yell at them for not completing a task or because they made a silly choice.

At least a thousand times a week, I forget to forgive myself.

It’s okay if your watch is on upside down. It’s like a backwards math problem. You can solve it!

It’s okay if you don’t know the date sometimes. The days fly too quickly anyway.

It’s okay if you call your kids by the wrong name. At least you will get someone’s attention.

It’s okay if you forget why you went into a room. At least you are capable of getting there. Who knows, maybe you will remember why you forgot to go there yesterday.

It’s okay to expect greatness from our children. They are pretty great after all. We just need to remember to take a moment, be patient, and find ways to help them understand what needs to be done.

Forgive yourself. Forgive yourself. Forgive yourself. You are human (and your watch is upside down, you are in the wrong room, and a kid you can’t name is begging for a snack.) Forgive yourself.

By: Melanie A. Peters

P.S. This is for all those parents out there who are having a rough parenting week, and everyone whose watch is upside down or on the wrong date, and anyone who can’t remember people’s names, and anyone who needs to be reminded to forgive themselves.

 

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Make Life Work – Wise Words Wednesday

Make Life Work – Wise Words Wednesday

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This sassy little quote was found on Pinterest. I like it.

While I write about positive energy and intent everyday, it is extremely necessary for me to also practice flexibility, consideration, and acceptance of imperfection.

The pursuits of happiness and perfection are often considered to be connected, but in all actuality, perfection prevents us from being happy because we are too worried about becoming imperfect.

In reading This I Believe, Andrew Sullivan’s philosophy outlined the pursuit of happiness as such, “I believe in the struggle to remake ourselves and challenge each other in spirit of eternal forgiveness, in the awareness that none of us knows for sure what happiness truly is, but each of us knows the imperative to keep searching. I believe in the possibility of surprising joy, of serenity through pain, and of homecoming through exile” (Allison, 233).

Life isn’t ever going to be perfect. We have to make it work through the joy, pain, and homecomings. We can never stop seeking what it is to be happy or to assist others in finding joy. Our own self-definition is never complete. We have to work to keep the surprises from throwing us too far off our intended course. And we have to maintain diligence through the challenges and imperfections of life.

It won’t be easy, but we can make it work……life, that is.

We must put LIFE to work each day. Allow the challenges and choices of each moment define a successful and fruitful existence. Direct your energy and intent in ways that lighten the loads of your imperfections and chaos. It’s never going to be perfect. Make it work.

Perfect your own personal style for living life to the fullest, and you won’t ever have to worry about living the perfect life. It will just work.

By: Melanie A. Peters

P.S. I am totally ok with not being perfect, but I still try really hard sometimes. I just do. Oh well, I guess I will keep working at it. Nobody’s perfect, right?

Sources: Allison, Jay, et al. This I Believe: the Personal Philosophies of Remarkable Women and Men. New York, Henry Holt, 2006.

Why are shadows so darn scary?

Why are shadows so darn scary?

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The weather was BEAUTIFUL this past weekend so I took my kiddos to the local playground. As we were swinging, my youngest son said, “Look how big I am!” (He was admiring how large the afternoon sun made him appear.)

My daughter was sitting on the swing next to him and she asked, “Mama, why do shadows scare me sometimes?” I laughed and told her I knew what she meant. I explained the meaning of the expression “Afraid of their own shadow.” She told me that she wasn’t afraid of her own shadow, just afraid of shadows sometimes because she didn’t know what they were.

Again, I assured her she wasn’t alone.

Here is the heart of my message. There are a lot of things out there that frighten us. Most of them are the unknown. Some of them are cold and dark. Some of them make small things seem enormous. Here is what we need to do to shed light on those scary old shadows:

png 1 Stop! Take a look at what is casting its shadow your way with an open-mind. When you allow yourself time to develop a clear perspective, it is a lot easier to find solutions to the situation that frightens you.

png 1 Shine your own light on the shadow. If the thing that frightens you is hanging around because of something scary a loved one is facing, be a beacon of joy and hope for them. When you share joy, it multiplies. Shadows don’t stand a chance when hope glows in the hearts of the frightened.

png 1 Tell the shadow to go away. If there is a threatening person or situation that continually darkens your door, let it go. Tell it to move on. Stand firm and move with unwavering intent to leave that shadow behind you.

png 1 Laugh it away. When you are able to face your fears and laugh in their shady faces, you are no longer afraid. You have put power into your own hands and taken charge of the situation.

png 1 Acknowledge that there will always be shadows to cross your path. Not every day can be all sunshine and roses. Not every song can be love and laughter. Not every story has a happy ending, but you can start a new tale or rewrite your personal history as you over come your shadowy fears. They exist but they the can only scare us if we let them.

By: Melanie A. Peters

 

P.S. I am not ashamed to admit that I have been scared by my own shadow once or twice.

 

The Day I Couldn’t Sing

The Day I Couldn’t Sing

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On Friday, January 6th I had the honor of being with my friends Laura, Karen, and Brenda when their mother Wanda passed away. Wanda was an honest, simple, and kind woman. My children called her Grandma Wanda. Losing her battle to cancer was the result of a long hard fight. She is greatly missed.

After Wanda’s passing the family asked me to sing at her funeral. There was not a question as to my willingness. I was ready. The song was even one of my favorites “Here I am, Lord” by Dan Schulte.

As the funeral approached, my nerves grew. My sadness seemed to have a hold on my voice. The day of Wanda’s funeral I prayed for grace and the ability to sing in a way that was worthy of honoring Wanda’s life.

It was a cold, windy day. The funeral home did not have an organist to accompany me so I found the music online. The funeral director and I checked and double checked that it was the correct music. As the funeral service began, I followed the ministers and other vocalist into the funeral salon. We were seated next to Wanda’s coffin.

It was heartbreaking to see the sadness on my friends’ faces and knowing that Miss Wanda was lying there next to me. The other vocalist sang the opening song beautifully. The opening prayer was humble and reverent.

It was my turn to sing. As I took my place at the microphone, I could hear the melody in my heart but not in my ears. Slowly the music began to filter in through the speakers. The speakers were overhead, projecting outward, and away from me. I leaned forward and took  a deep breath. Too deep. I missed the sound of my opening note. I quickly caught up but my voice was shaky and a bit high.

The winds blowing outside shook the windows and the WiFi antenna. The music stopped. I sang a few words but could not find the melody in my ears or my heart. It was as if the sadness and wind had blown me too far off my musical course. I could not sing.

I apologized. The music buffered and restarted at a different spot. I waited for the chorus and I sang again shakier than ever and without my heart in the song. As I made it to the last verse, my friend smiled at me and nodded. She knew I was doing my best and how hard it was to be there. The music cut out again briefly but I sang that last verse and closing chorus to the best of my ability, sat down, and cried.

My tears were not from embarrassment but from shame. How could I let Wanda’s family down? How could I let Wanda down? I just couldn’t sing. Continue reading “The Day I Couldn’t Sing”

The Creative Power of the Unknown – Wise Words Wednesday

The Creative Power of the Unknown – Wise Words Wednesday

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The personal philosophies found in the This I Believe collection continue to amaze me. One that stood out to me in particular this week came from astrophysicist Alan Lightman.

In his personal philosophy he wrote, “I hope that there are always things we don’t know about the physical world as well as about ourselves. I believe in the creative power of the unknown. I believe in the boundary of standing between the known and the unknown. I believe in the unanswered questions of children” (Allison, 149).

Our brains are so overworked with the little details of everyday survival that we forget to hold onto the magic of wonder. We limit our boundaries for growth.

I love when my children ask me questions that stump me. Those questions demonstrate the tremendous potential my children have for understanding and intelligence. It also reminds me that it’s ok to not be a know-it-all. We always have something to learn about our world or ourselves.

As you embark on your schedule-driven journey this week, leave a little room to learn and explore things that are new or unknown to you. Provide creative energy to your conversations and introductions. Allow the unknown to extend into your personal motivation. Continue reading “The Creative Power of the Unknown – Wise Words Wednesday”

Burning Desire

Burning Desire

Like all kids, mine love camping and campfires. Any time the weather is nice (especially in mid-February), they beg to have a fire and roast marshmallows.

We almost always say, “No,” however last night was an exception. For whatever reason (probably because hubby and I were just as eager to be outside), we converted the charcoal grill into a fit pit and we had our very own campfire.

This winter has been very dry and warm so the grill was necessary to keep the fire from consuming our lawn, house, and fields.

As I watched my children tend the fire and roast their hotdogs and marshmallows, my heart was warmed. 20170212_180047After eating we sat there in the quite twilight watching the flames dance.

Here came my burning desire…

My family at peace together enjoying one of life’s simple pleasures stoked a burning desire inside me. My burning desire was to hold my babies tight. My burning desire was to always be my husband’s side. It was a burning desire to never forget the sights, smells, sounds, and feelings of that moment. Those moments were burned into my heart and memory because of the simplicity of the evening and love for my family. More than anything my burning desire was for happy moments like this one to never end.

As all desires and fires do, the heat died away and the callings of life cooled our enthusiasm and pulled us back into the reality of daily tasks. The fire pit had to be doused, the trash had to be collected, baths were needed, clothes picked out for tomorrow, and bedtime prayers had to be said.

The passion of this lesson cannot be diminished by time though. The desires created in these moments added to the love I already had for my family. I now have a cherished moment to keep safe in my heart and a spark of love that will continue to be lit when we think of that one Sunday in February when we built a fire.

By: Melanie A. Peters

P.S. Sorry this wasn’t a hot and steamy romance story. It was kind of romantic though.

 

 

Meet and Greet Weekend Party

I encourage all my blogging friends to join this Meet and Greet Weekend party. Spread the wealth and share your blog while connecting other writers.

The Light Breaks Through

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Meet and greet are opportunities for you to give people a chance to know more about you. It also gives you the opportunity to promote your blog. To make this more fun. Tell us what country you are posting from.  Tells us about your blog, what topics you cover, why you started blogging and a link to the post you are most proud of.  The other rules of engagement are listed below. Remember to copy this link on either your blog or social media outlet. I hope you get new people to see your heart and passion for blogging.

Here are the rules of engagement-

Leave a link to the post you are most proud of.

SHARE this post (social media or reblog)

The best way to increase readership is to engage with other bloggers! Comment on their posts. Invest time in what others are doing. It will help you…

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Worms in your Ice Cream

Worms in your Ice Cream

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After taking my kiddos to their annual well visits, we headed to the local frozen yogurt shop. This place is so cool! Not only can you make your own frozen yogurt sundae or shake, but you can also sing karaoke or tie-dye a t-shirt.

With my help, each kiddo selected chocolate frozen yogurt, of course and then dashed to the toppings buffet. There were lots and lots of toppings. There were healthy, fresh fruits, not-so-healthy sprinkles, candies, cookies, marshmallows, and syrupy toppings. It was a sundae lover’s dream. I was surprised by many of their choices but said nothing because I didn’t want to hinder their excitement. After their bowls were filled to the brim, they had the shop owner weigh their bowls and headed to our table.

It was then that I went to make my sundae. Of course this distracted my little sweeties from eating their own frosty treats and all three had to follow me around and learn from my expert sundae building skills.

Sadly, they did not like my choice of peanut butter yogurt. They loudly protested when I added nuts, but when I made it to the fresh fruit, they realized there was no fresh fruit in their bowls. Things went sour from there. Continue reading “Worms in your Ice Cream”

The Right to be Wrong – Wise Words Wednesday

The Right to be Wrong – Wise Words Wednesday

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“I believe that man’ noblest endowment is his capacity to change. Armed with reason, he can see two sides and choose: He can be divinely wrong. I believe in a man’s right to be wrong.” – Leonard Bernstein

This I Believe is a collection of personal philosophies. I am currently reading it and LOVE what I am reading. The history of This I Believe dates back to the 1950’s. The original This I Believe series asked individuals to write their philosophy and then share it on the radio. It was a huge sensation.

As I pour through the philosophies of tremendous individuals, both from the 1950’s and present, I am moved by the similar themes that continue to surface. Kindness, compassion, intelligence, and faith are key elements in all of the entries. Each of these traits requires us to grow and change. Our wrong choices set us up for opportunities to do just that. Grow. Learn. Change. Become better people.

As you encounter the mistakes of others and yourself, remember the right to be wrong is guaranteed to everyone. We cannot develop deeper understanding in our lives, if we don’t discover what works and what doesn’t.

Being wrong is different than being bad. Continue reading “The Right to be Wrong – Wise Words Wednesday”

Versatile Blogger Award – February 2017

Versatile Blogger Award – February 2017

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“Life is about being a versatile athlete and training in all realms of life.”  -Ray Lewis

Upon receiving my nomination for the Versatile Blogger Award from The Wandress, author of “wandering in my Genes,” I was exceptionally honored. Her young blog on life and works of literature is sweet, sincere, and uplifting. To be considered “Versatile” by someone who has created such a fluid work of blog art is really a treat for me. Thank you!

The Versatile Blogger Award is an honor that also serves as a pay-it-forward approach to blogging. When this award is given, the recipient is to share 7 facts about his or her self (hopefully enlightening their readers as to why they have been deemed “Versatile”), thank the individual who nominated them, and then nominate 15 other bloggers that are also worthy of the honor.

As for my 7 Versatile Blogger Facts:

  1. I try to write a little every day. It is a proven practice for honing and strengthening one’s writing voice and skill. (I still need A LOT of practice.)
  2. Receiving “likes” and comments on my blog posts is the equivalent to winning the lottery. Anytime I receive a notification that a post has been liked, shared, or commented on, my heart does a happy little cartwheel.
  3. My children always want to be a part of  my blog writing process but sometimes I am leery of including them. While I am comfortable exposing my own thoughts and fears, I am not always comfortable sharing details about my precious children. I guess I am just an overprotective mom.
  4. I have the most amazing collection of friends. They are all so different and lead such varying lives that I feel blessed to be a tie that binds them.
  5. I plan my meals a month at a time. I print a blank calendar at the beginning of each month, look through my pantry and freezer, plan our suppers, and then make my grocery lists from the monthly menu. It is one of my attempts to control the chaos of my life. It also saves money on groceries.
  6. My favorite color is blue. I LOVE the color blue.
  7. I don’t like to wash windows. I will sweep, do dishes, laundry, and vacuum my heart out, but I don’t like to wash windows. I plan to write about this in my spring cleaning posts.

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Now to my nominations of other bloggers.

I follow a number of bloggers that I believe are tremendously versatile. Here are a few. Please check out their work.

  1. Meli author of https://thedreamingyogi.wordpress.com
  2. vinaytheblogger author of https://techyvinay.wordpress.com/
  3. Life in the Leslie Lane
  4. An Epic of Epic Epicness
  5. K. Lamb author of The Gentlemen Project
  6. Whitney Edna ibe author of https://whitneyibeblog.wordpress.com
  7. Bev author of https://sahmclub.wordpress.com/
  8. Steve Cauley author of https://pastorstevencauley.com/
  9. Natalie author of https://natalieschriefer.wordpress.com/
  10. Dawn Liz Jones author of https://dawnlizjones.wordpress.com/

By: Melanie A. Peters (2 time Versatile Blogger Award recipient)

P.S. Be sure to award someone with a compliment or statement of gratitude for what they bring to your life.