Sloth
Daily Gratitude, writing

A New Angle

If our pain doesn’t destroy us, it might just transform us into truly human beings at last.

Frederick Buechner

I’m not very good at finishing books. I’d say that I’m halfway through 4 or 5 at the moment; maybe more. One in particular, A Crazy, Holy Grace: The Healing Power of Pain and Memory, by Frederick Buechner, has been on my mind quite a bit this past week.

In the part I’ve been thinking about, Buechner writes about what we do with the hand we’re dealt in life. He shares his ideas about sloth as “not really making use of what happens to you,” and “burying what you might have made something out of.” In other words, do you slip what you’ve been though under the rug, and carry on as if nothing ever happened to you? Or do you take that experience and make something meaningful out of it?

First of all, I always thought that sloth was just sheer laziness; lounging around and enjoying leisure time (kind of like the sloth pictured here).

Sloth
Image by Christina Wendlandt from Pixabay

It was comforting to see sloth the way that Buechner does, especially now that I REALLY have time to lounge around (kind of like that sloth pictured there). And aren’t we all trying to make the most of what we’ve been dealt right now—even if that means accepting the simple fact that we have some extra leisure time right now?

I know this is a strange story, and you probably wonder what the point of it is anyway… but what I’m getting at is that the story made me thankful for WRITERS; People like Buechner that spill it all out on the page and let the rest of us try to make sense of it all.

Novelists, journalists, bloggers, poets (to name a few)… we’re all doing it. Scribbling down our thoughts and sending them out into the world. Allowing ourselves to be vulnerable; trying to make a difference; using our experiences to encourage others; sharing the talents we’ve been given; even adding some whimsy and lighthearted humor to help cheer others up. That’s what it’s all about!

So yes… yes indeed. Today I am thankful for writers.

God bless you everyone… Thank you for reading, and Write on!

—Janet


This is the first in my newest series during the social distancing rule here in the States: A Daily Gratitude.

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Black and White Blossoms
journaling, Photography

Fluidity

Before I dig into any New Lifestyle, New Me updates, I thought I’d share some thoughts I’ve had on this COVID-19 dilemma, social distancing, and how it’s helping me come up with some new ideas.

Staying away from crowds, as I’ve mentioned, hasn’t been difficult. Dealing with the recent rains, on the other hand, was pretty tough! Especially when I finally had my step counter on, and had nowhere to go—but around, in circles—inside our (not so large) house.

Now… however, the sky is blue and I’ve never been so happy to get outside, breath in some fresh air, and feel the warm sun hit my face. All I can think of is that Cinderella song… Don’t know what you got (Til it’s gone).

I don’t know how to phrase it exactly, a wake-up call maybe? Like stop your complaining about silly little things because things could always be worse… much, much worse, in fact. It seems like we’re being called to reevaluate priorities, and revisit our gratitude lists. Well, it feels that way to me.

That being said, I thought I’d add something new to the mix. For every day that I’m here at home—under the social distancing rule—besides working on my Lifestyle Changes, I’m going to add a new gratitude post.

I don’t think there could be a better time for expressing a little thankfulness.

Thanks for reading and I hope you’ll stay tuned!

The featured photograph was taken in my backyard. I’ve been taking my camera out there a lot. I sit in a chair in the sun and look around, waiting for things to catch my eye (many more to come). They are actually blooms on my son’s ornamental cabbage that has bolted. I love the way everything grows and flows so freely, nature is so fluid.

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Photography

As the Crow flies

Dignified hunter,

The dark ruler of the sky,

Wings spread, you’ll fly… high.

I captured this crow in our neighbors tree the other day and decided he was worth the (computer) time and struggle. He was all alone—practicing social distancing I suppose—and we connected for a minute or two before he lifted his wings for this farewell pose and sailed off.

Life is good and God is great!

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journaling, Lifestyle Change

When Life . . .

Gives you Lemons.


Life has definitely thrown a curve ball. A part of me wonders if it’s the perfect opportunity to postpone my New Lifestyle, New Me adventure, but the other part of me—the pushy and persistent side—will just not let that happen. If there’s one thing I’ve learned in this crazy, twisted, and often convoluted life… it is how to ADAPT.

Some things are going to have to wait. That just can’t be helped. It’s almost impossible to find Ezekiel Bread (or any healthy whole wheat bread for that matter), and Frozen Fruit, Plain Non-fat Greek Yogurt and healthy milk alternatives (for my delicious smoothies) have disappeared from the shelves as well. Adjustments are being made. I’ll reassess the food situation in a few weeks—or when healthier foods are back in supply—whichever comes first.

It’s hard to believe I’m starting WEEK FOUR. My how time flies!

Since my “Stepping Goal’ was modified to 5,500 per day, I’ve managed to hit my mark everyday for the last four days. Yay! It’s so awesome to make small goals because your chances of accomplishing them are so great and—in turn—you constantly have little victories to celebrate. I’m 1000 over my previous average; that’s an additional half-mile per day. Not too shabby.

I’ve been reading tidbits here and there about the dangers of sitting for extended periods, so I’ve decided to address that issue this week. After doing a little (Google) research, I found and installed an app called Water Drink Reminder. Default reminders are once every hour, but I’ve revised mine to ring every 30 minutes (for now).

Since the app literally reminds me to drink water (duh), I’m actually killing two birds with one stone. I get a notification, stand up and do my steps for five minutes (or so) AND I’m reminded to drink water and log the amount into my app.

At the end of the day, I’ve put in my steps all day long (as opposed to waiting until just before bed and pacing frantically around the house to hit my goal!) AND I’m tracking how much water I’m drinking—another healthy addition!

As for lemons, we have a tree out back that is full of them and I’ve never been more grateful for that tree. I think you’ll be seeing another post about lemons soon… maybe a fun recipe.

Anyway, thank you for reading!! I hope you found some useful information or enjoyment here. Until next time…

Be safe and Stay healthy!

—Janet

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Art, digital art, Haiku, writing

On the Bay

Drop-ins at the Bay,

Laugh and Play Pitter-patter,

Welcome intrusion.

Last night I decided that using borrowed images, or upcycling my own (which I’ve done here) is about all I can handle at the moment. Besides my old laptop looking tired, programs are running WAY to slow lately. This one’s an old photo from South Texas, jazzed up with new effects.

I don’t know about anyone else, but I only have so much patience when it comes to waiting for my hard drive to catch up with me. I may seem nice, but last night I was cussing like a sailor. I’ve had it!

Maybe it’s my laptop, or maybe it’s the internet, but I refuse to watch that little blue wheel of death spin around anymore. It’s time to give Photoshop a rest. I’ll be shopping for a new PC in May, so—until then—I’m going to focus on my lifestyle changes, journaling, and some creative writing.

When the going gets tough, the tough get going!

Written for Ronovan Writes Haiku Challenge: Bay & Play

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