Musings From A Musical Mind

Archive for the ‘Happiness’ Category

October Baby

Tomorrow you turn 22.  I remember this day so well, 22 years ago today.  A beautiful sunny crisp October day in Northern California, much like the day here in Seattle.  A day like any other.  The day before my life changed forever.

It’s funny how the seasons come and go – yet some things stay constant and perfectly formed in our memory.   Sometimes those moments that drastically change who we are forever are more clear to us than things that happened yesterday.

According to Dr. Phil, you can trace who you’ve become in this life to three types of external factors: 10 defining moments, seven critical choices, and five pivotal people. But first it’s important to understand the following terms:

Ten Defining Moments: In every person’s life, there have been moments, both positive and negative, that have defined and redefined who you are. Those events entered your consciousness with such power that they changed the very core of who and what you thought you were. A part of you was changed by those events, and caused you to define yourself, to some degree by your experience of that event.

Seven Critical Choices: There are a surprisingly small number of choices that rise to the level of life-changing ones. Critical choices are those that have changed your life, positively or negatively, and are major factors in determining who and what you will become. They are the choices that have affected your life up to today, and have set you on a path.

Five Pivotal People: These are the people who have left indelible impressions on your concept of self, and therefore, the life you live. They may be family members, friends or co-workers, and their influences can be either positive or negative. They are people who can determine whether you live consistently with your authentic self, or instead live a counterfeit life controlled by a fictional self that has crowded out who you really are.

 

As I reflect over those 10 defining moments of my own life – getting married and having each of my babies certainly ranks up there with the most important and most life changing.  No matter how old I am, or where life’s journey takes me – I am forever changed by the birth of Ashlee and you.  You are part of those seven critical choices and definitely one of my five pivotal people.

And so Shawn – it is with very sweet and sentimental memories that I remember today, the day before you.

09_27_4You made your entrance on October 5th, 1991 at 8:26 pm.  You filled up an entire room – even back then.  You were laid back, shy, sweet, calm and peaceful.  As you grew you developed a slow and steady manner and a great ability to make and keep friends.  Your sense of humor has sustained you even in the tough times of relationships and finding your own way.  Your deep faith in God continues to guide you and be your compass.  You are one of the things that forever changed me.

I could not have dreamed you up in a million years.  Shawn means “gift of God” and you were that for me.  It was a privilege to be your Mom and I am proud of who you are and all that I know you are still becoming.  It is in the letting go that we truly find.  And I have always known that you were on loan and that you would need to find your own way.  I’m so glad you are learning all those tough things while realizing your family loves and supports you in the background.  You are learning to rely on God’s help and have deepened your faith in those things that are really lasting and important.  Money, fame and even friends will come and go.  Love, family and faith in God lasts forever.  And I pray every day for that special young woman who will change your life forever.

Until you have finally found your stride and your place stay strong and firm in your faith.  You are loved and thought about each and every day.  You are special and have a special purpose.  Don’t give up, never lose heart – for a part of the end result is the journey you’re on right now.  And these times will be what you look back on as one of your defining moments.

I love you…Happy 22nd!

 

 

 

 

Treasures In Heaven

Last weekend and this have been a fun time for Greg and me as we are sorting through all of years of “stuff”.  Having a garage sale is the best remedy to hoarding and having too much of that stuff.  I’ve seen those “hoarding” programs and I’m sure you have too – you maybe even know a friend or two who has WAY too much – and you wish they would give some of it away – or take it away yourself!  A big problem we have in this country is the accumulation of TOO MUCH.  I mean – how many pencils, pens, pictures, purses, folders, shoes, jackets, plates, cups, clothes, electronics and other things does one really need?  Good grief – we even have FOUR TVs!!  (At least until our garage sale last week)  Um yeah.  There are TWO of us who live here.  The dogs don’t watch TV.  It’s pretty crazy.  I’m selling or giving away purses – I don’t really use them – so WHY would I have so many?  And what we don’t sell this weekend we are going to give away – no one needs so much.

I’ve learned a great deal about myself and the “stuff” I posses in the last few months.  In an effort to downsize it just is not practical to take too much – so – what do I really need?  Can I be just as happy with 3 less bookcases?  Do I really need that cabinet sitting under the window in my office?  Why?  So many pillows?  So many shoes, clothes, jackets??  REALLY???  No.  We are stopping the madness.

And we may not get it right – but at least we are moving in a direction that will allow us to lighten the load – not become too dependent on material things.  Reminds me of that passage of scripture which reminds us to keep in simple.

But collect for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves don’t break in and steal.    Matthew 6:20  Holman Christian Standard Bible

My Precious Jewel

My Precious Jewel (Photo credit: cammy♥claudia)


 

And I believe the whole purpose behind this particular scripture is to gently remind us – that while having material things is not in itself wrong or bad – if our focus and only source of happiness comes from having them – GET RID OF THEM.

What does it mean to “collect treasures in heaven”?  I know what it means down here on earth and for me personally.  It means the things I love and hold onto in my heart.  The things I dwell on and think about.  The things that overwhelm my thoughts.  They are desires, people, pets, things that bring comfort and much, much more.  To “collect treasures in heaven” must mean that God wants my thoughts and desires to be focused daily first and foremost on Him and what is important to Him.  His words of love in the written word tell over and over again how he loves so much that He sacrificed everything – not withholding His only son to save us.  He is concerned for lost people.  He is concerned with showing love and compassion because it is what he provided as an example for each of us.  When we love, show compassion, are kind, gentle, generous and forgiving – we model the very behavior that He came to earth to show.

I don’t know about you – but I am “collecting treasures in heaven” by showing love.  By dwelling on thoughts of being an encouragement and by being kind and generous.  I want others to see what Jesus looks like – by seeing me.  I want others to collect those treasures for themselves too.   And in heaven you don’t have to have a garage sale to lighten the load – up there it will be THE MORE TREASURES THE BETTER!!  I want my treasures to be the people I have influenced and loved.  I want to see them all represented – all the years and investment like shining jewels sparkling and bragging about me!  And I want you to have just as many if not MORE than I will have!

 

God Bless

 

 

Another Time Another Place

Watching this video today brings back so many memories!  This duet and song is one of my FAVORITES from back in the day – (look at Wayne Watson’s long hair!) and both of these artists are still touring, writing and singing today – 20+ years later!  Sandi Patty and Wayne Watson are the real deal and this is just one example.   Truly an underrated song with wonderful lyrics, melody and incredible voices – hope you enjoy going down memory lane today as much as I did.  Parts of this song gives me chills!

 

God Bless!

God Made A Dog

The other day my friend Linda sent this to me.  It is so good I just had to share it with all you dog lovers out there!

God Bless!

God And Dog

Today Greg found this wonderful video by Wendy Francisco.  This darling song has also been made into a children’s book by the same title, “God and Dog”.  You can purchase it on Amazon by clicking here.

If you have and love dogs like I do – then this is for you today.  Watch it and smile :)

 

God Bless

My Wingman

A wingman (or wingmate) is a pilot who supports another in a potentially dangerous flying environment.

The traditional military definition of a “Wingman” refers to the pattern in which fighter jets fly. There is always a lead aircraft and another which flies off the right-wing of and behind the lead. This second pilot is called the “Wingman” because he or she primarily protects the lead by “watching his back.”

Wikipedia

I’ve seen movies where a “wingman” is very important to the pilot, such as “Top Gun” and “Pearl Harbor”.  I’ve always been fascinated with the concept.  That protection.  That feeling of safety.  Knowing someone has your back – priceless.

We all have humans in our lives that we think of in this way.  My husband Greg, for example is my “wingman” in every sense of the word.  He stays with me – protects me from unseen things, keeps me feeling safe, etc.

But I also have a canine “wingman”.  My puppy, Dexter.IMG_4259He takes his job seriously.  Barks at anybody near to me and gets agitated if he cannot get close enough so that he can protect me.  He is never far from me during the day.  When I’m in my office typing – he is at my feet or by my side – amusing himself with a toy or bone for hours at a time.  When I leave the room, he dutifully follows.  If I’m in the kitchen, he sits on the floor and watches everything I do.  When I sit to watch a movie, he joyfully jumps into my lap, his favorite place to be.  At night he cuddles up next to me – happiest under the covers with his head resting on my arm.

He is my “wingman” extraordinaire  :)

Of course this togetherness can get a little trying at times – especially when I have students coming and going during the afternoon for lessons.  His sharp barking reminds everyone coming in the house that he is trying to protect me!  And although very endearing – it gets annoying and I have to be firm with him and tell him to stop that barking!  But it is also sweet and loyal – how angry can you be with an adorable puppy who just wants to be with me?

It’s funny.  Our Bichon has never had any concept of “protecting” me.  She is a loveable, complicated, high maintenance, beautiful, and independent dog.  But she never stays with me very long.  Her favorite thing to do is go for a ride in the truck – go for a walk on the trail – or go upstairs and hide from Dexter – sleeping for several hours at a time.   Dexter loves to run upstairs and find her – jump on top of her and wrestle.  She will play along most of the time – and it’s cute when they play together.  But other times she will give a warning growl when she has had enough!  Sometimes in the evening we won’t see her from 7:00 – 10:30!  Not so with Dexter.  He is happiest when he can see me and be beside me.  Oh he’s not a perfect dog – barks too much at the neighbor dogs and most of the time will not come when called.

But I have decided that the positive far outweighs the negative.  I do love my little “wingman”.

God Bless

A Unique Perspective

Photograph of Shuffleboard at the Century Vill...

Photograph of Shuffleboard at the Century Village Retirement Community – NARA – 548567 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Yesterday Greg and I had the opportunity to observe people in action.  People who manage a retirement community here in our area.  They were gracious hosts and showed us what they do to make a safe and comfortable environment for senior adults age 55 and older.  It is an independent living community, filled with many amenities, love and warmth.

The facility itself is large and beautiful – but what was impressive to us – were the people who live there.  Everyone was  happy, in good humor and eager to meet a new friend.  When we first walked up to the facility a couple of older gentlemen sitting outside the front doors flirted with me right in front of Greg,-  telling me that I had made their day – so cute :)  Greg got a real kick out of it and teased them back, which they found very endearing.  We walked in to  the large lobby where an art display was in progress.  The artist was a sweet lady in her 80’s that got started with art lessons at age 69!  There was wine and cheese and a display of her pictures with everyone milling around.  And we found to our amazement, someone we had known from a staff position at a nearby church about 5 years ago.  Greg had baptized this man and he had remembered the experience with fond memories.  It was great to talk with him and find out he had been in this facility for 19 months and LOVED IT!

In this unique independent living facility – the live in managers either make or break any feelings or atmosphere for the senior adults.  It was great to witness that this management couple was doing something right.  This kind of lifestyle is certainly not for everyone, but the rewards can far outweigh the drawbacks – because like church work – it is about people.  It is about ministry in the truest form – serving people.

Our unique perspective was in witnessing the dynamic of happy people living with a group of people who thrive on love, attention and time.

I think we are all like the people who live there.  We thrive when someone takes a special interest in us – someone who makes us feel special, our needs are important – and someone who really listens and understands.  It is a shame to think that we must become senior adults to have people pay attention to us in that way.

It is a lesson to all of us on this side of retirement.  It is a great reminder that life is short.  Enjoy each day as it comes.  Live each day to the fullest.  Listen to others.  Make others feel safe in your company.  Make others feel wanted and special.  Love on people.  Watch what happens.  See people  blossom right in front of your eyes.

 

God Bless

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