Award


I want to thank The Eye-Dancers for nominating me for the Versatile Blogger Award.

The rules for this award are as follows: Rules of the Versatile Blogger Award:

1. Display the award logo on your blog.

2. Thank and Link back to the person who nominated you.

3. State 7 things about yourself.

4. Nominate 15 bloggers for this award. (As this is my second round with this award, I’ve cut it down to 5)

5. Notify those bloggers of the nomination by linking to one of their specific posts so that they get notified by ping back.

Here are the seven things about myself! . . .

1. I love Chocolate ice cream

2. I love to read biographies and memoirs

3. I love to feed the birds

4. I love planning and executing my container garden

5. I love to go out to eat with friends and laugh and talk

6. I love to take photographs of everything and everyone

7. When I paint, the absolute best part, for me, is mixing colors.

New Nominations:

ClanMother

Stories by Williams

RoSy

Cyril

Lady Blue Rose

Celebrating Each Day of Our Lives


Make sure you dance every day so you can feel your joy

Make sure you dance every day so you can feel your joy

The days of our lives are filled with many things. They can be filled with hard work, illness, anxiety, passion, protesting, child care, doing laundry and a million other things which are not exciting. Life can make us very numb where we just go through the motions. We can look but not see what is right in front of us.

There are days where getting out of your comfort zone is rough. Some days it is easier to over look the song of the bird or the honk of a goose. Some days you don’t hear the music, it swirls around you without being able to get near your heart or soul.

Some days life feels right as soon as we open our eyes. The air smells sweet, you can hear a robin looking for materials to build his nest, you can hear your favorite music in your head and it lifes your heart. You can do a little dance as you make breakfast. A smile graces your face all day and you in turn, can share it with everyone. In short, these types of days show our celebration of  life.

Celebrating life comes in sections .One section is praise for the blessing in your life. Those things that could be material or simply the note you received from an old friend. Praise is easy on the good days. It will flow out and around you as it gently floats upward toward the heavens. Praise on the hard days, when sickness, problems, uncertainity plague you, make praise be something you need to work at. It is just as important on these days and probably more appreciated by The One.

The other section is gratitude. This is not the same. The gratitude raises up out of your soul and engulfs you as you take every breath of air and as you take each step. Gratitude is the ability and intention of seeing every little gift given to you. It is the ability to recognize that you are surrounded by tiny miracles and they make you feel so loved and cherished by the Divinity in life.

When you put gratitude and praise together, you find the ultimate goal. You find yourself celebrating life. Celebrating life takes the weaving together of gratitude and praise to create an emotional quilt to wrap around yourself. So try each day to find a way to be in touch with your innerself and celebrate life as often as you can. Life, here on this plane, won’t last forever. There will be a day when we move on to the next plane of existence. We go forward experiencing the cycle of  life. So today, try to really see and hear your world, dance a few steps, and sing your favorite song, even if it is off tune. Celebrate! Celebrate and see what comes back to you. Blessings to all, Barbara

I am a feminist woman

Butterfly whispering. Photo by Cliff Mattio

Celebrate with praise and gratitude.

Celebrate with praise and gratitude.

A Tiny Drop of Water


     The Joy of Unity With the Universe

“O Lord,
One tiny bit of water rests on the palm of my hand.
I bring it to you and with it I bring the whole ocean
This tiny drop has the power to ease the burning thirst of men,
when spread on the earth, to give life to the seed and the future
harvest,
when poured on the fire to quench the blaze.
A tiny drop of water
can cleanse the whole of my impurity when blessed by your forgiveness.

—Ishpriya rscj

Blessings

Seeing the World Through Different Eyes

Invoking the powers of the Universe or bestowing on Mother Earth or other beings is neither a simple benevolent wish nor an act of hubris. It is really an act of creative confidence.We free ourselves to come into dynamic relationship with the entire Universe. “May all beings be happy.”

“What a thing it is to sit absolutely alone,
in the forest, at night, cherished by this
wonderful, unintelligible,
perfectly innocent speech,
The most comforting speech in the world,
the talk that rain makes by itself all over the ridges,
and the talk of the watercourses everywhere in the hollows!
Nobody started it, nobody is going to stop it.
It will talk as long as it wants, this rain.
As long as it talks I am going to listen.
————Thomas Merton

“Let us be united,
Let us speak in harmony,
Let our minds apprehend alike,
Common be our prayer,
Common be the end of our assembly,
Common be our resolution.
Alike be our feelings,
United be our hearts,
Common be our intentions,
Perfect be our unity.

—— From the Hindu Rig Veda

Cuyahogua Falls, Ohio;  Photo by Barbara Mattio

Cuyahogua Falls, Ohio; Photo by Barbara Mattio

Violence Destroys Families


Battering destroys families.

Battering destroys families.

For the victim of battering or Domestic Violence, they exist in a house with someone who hurts them. They are literally “Sleeping With the Enemy.” Abuse is the only crime in America where we ask the victim to lie down in bed next to the person who has just finished knocking their teeth out, punched them in the stomach, burned them with a cigarette, or holding a gun to their head.

Generations of children have learned that battering is normal.

Generations of children have learned that battering is normal.

Children in violent homes are often beaten or molested by someone they live with. Even for those who haven’t been beaten, They see their parents as role models. Yes, they often try to protect their mothers but the majority of them repeat the beatings they saw over and over as a child . They  learned to be an abuser. Girls in violent families whether beaten or not, watch the victim be punched, dragged, choked, slapped  burned with a cigarette and many other vile acts. They learn from their family that they are victims.  As they grow older, it is not unusual for abusers and victims to find each other. They live together in their set roles.

This woman is being victimized

This woman is being victimized

Love should never hurt

Love should never hurt

The scene of Domestic Violence begins like any other relationship. Two people meet and fall in love. They live together or marry and may eventually have a baby. An abuser doesn’t always begin to abuse while they are dating. Sometimes it begins on the honeymoon. That first punch to teach the victim who is in charge. The abuser wants her to know exactly what is expected. Dinner at six, his shirts laundered just so. He expects her to be home all day and he will be calling to check up on her. Sometimes the abuse doesn’t begin until a pregnancy becomes reality. The abuser may say they are pleased and excited, but will then begin to beat the victim up. Frequently, the abuse consists of punching her over and over in the stomach. Many women have lost their babies because of abuse. Sometimes the abuse doesn’t begin until the children are older and the house doesn’t run as smoothly as it used to. The house is full of playing, laughing, screaming or giggling children. They learn soon enough not to bring anyone home to play because an episode of abuse may begin. These are families in name only.

Often violence begins during pregnancy

Often violence begins during pregnancy

Hands were made for hugging and not for hitting.

Hands were made for hugging and not for hitting.

To attempt to prevent episodes of abuse, the victim will try to have everything just the way the abuser wants it. The children are taught to be quiet and just eat dinner and go do homework. They stay in their rooms or go to a friend’s house so that they won’t be battered or have to hear the screams of pain and the abusive slurs that go hand in hand with the physical abuse.

Speak out

Speak out

If you are being abused or know someone who is, get out and go to a shelter. Almost all cities have shelters now. Get yourself and the kids out before the abuse escalates and someone is dead. In a shelter, you will find medical help, warm beds, food, counseling, legal advice and assistance. You and your children will be protected and supported as you begin the process of starting a new life without violence.

It is never, never right to abuse a woman or children. It is never right to abuse a man. This is not really love. It is power and control. The abuser thinks he owns you. Leaving the violent home will be the beginning of having the ability to live without the fear of abuse.

A handprint