Tag: Photo

When Life Hands you Lemons, Make Lemonade

When Life Hands you Lemons, Make Lemonade

You’ve heard it before, “When life hands you lemons, Make lemonade”. It’s an oft used saying, the origin attributed to a variety of people.

“When fate hands us a lemon, let’s try to make a lemonade”
-Dale Carnegie

“If you have a lemon, make lemonade.”
-Howard Luck Gossage

“If life deals you lemons made lemonade”
-Proverb

Wikipedia says:
A popular quote by Dale Carnegie is “If life gives you lemons, make lemonade”, meaning that one should make the best of bad situations.

Even Forrest Gump is attributed with using the phrase.

For me, today, the issue is truly about making the best of the situation. The situation that pertains to me is a series of occurrences that are not necessarily bad, just not ones I expected to be in.

I had planned to be on the road today, driving from Kelowna to Vancouver to meet my Mom so I could fly with her to Tucson. Unfortunately the arrival of snow this morning preempted that plan.

And I guess I should clarify and say it’s not really the snow or inclement weather that caused me to change my plans, more that I take events like that as signs, indications that perhaps I should rethink my schedule and go to plan B. It wouldn’t be the end of the world after all, it gives me more time with my daughter and grandson.

Not only did the snow flurries give me pause to think, the realization this morning I forgot my passport at home also gave me a start. It was like someone poked me with a stick and said, “Hey, take a breath, you should really think about whether you were supposed to make this leg of the trip on this day”. So I did, I took a breath, and decided to leave for Vancouver tomorrow instead. My passport would be mailed to me here, I could renew my car insurance, and with some luck the weather will improve and tomorrow will be the day.

tulips, lemons, lemonade
Lemon coloured tulips

The pause in my day also allowed me to take a deep breath and revisit what was important to me. Sure I very quickly thought ‘let’s make lemonade’ and while I was pondering what that meant I also noticed a vase of beautiful yellow Tulips on my daughters table. Yellow lemons, yellow tulips. Hmmm, things that make you go Hmmm.

They are very pretty, and if there are no other obvious blessings to deferring this part of the trip I will accept that at least I was able to appreciate the beauty of nature for even a moment. I squeezed the lemons, and got lemonade for the soul.

Be In the Moment

Be In the Moment

Be IN the moment, LIVE in the moment…

“Life is a journey, not a destination.”
– Ralph Waldo Emerson

I don’t really know why this came to me, this idea or concept around how we should ‘live’ our lives. I have read a couple books on the topic and I think I’ve even wrote about it here, in Today, Live.

It is interesting (to me at least) that I wrote “Today, Live” almost 1 year ago to the day. Hmmmm, things that make you go Hmmmm.

smell the flowers, be in the moment, live in the moment
Stop and smell the flowers

Basically it means stopping and smelling the flowers. Taking note of everything that is happening to and around you, what you are doing at any given moment. Noticing and relishing in it.

If you are having coffee then smell the coffee. When you are eating your Eggs Benny then taste your breakfast. Don’t wolf it all down while you read the paper or watch the news. Live the moment, experience the occasion. If your are with someone then BE with them, not daydreaming about what you will do or say next.

Important stuff. Easy to say and hard to do, trust me. Too often during my journey through life, and my passage through depression, I have forgotten this basic credo. I strive not to forget again.

I won’t go into it much more than that, you are all pretty smart and can read between the lines. And again I don’t really know why I thought of it now.

Perhaps it’s because the sun is shining and it looks like it will be a glorious day today. Maybe it’s because I feel good and I want to remember the feeling, I want it to continue and be this way, until I don’t feel anymore.

I think that what I want right now is to be outside in the sun and fresh air, perhaps sitting on the deck or out in the front yard. It’s a tad cold for that at present but in a month or so it won’t be.

I also think about my parents and other loved ones like children and grandchildren, how time with them is SO important. I think of Aunts and Uncles, neices and nephews. Too easily we can get drawn away, into our own stuff, and we forget those special people to us. At some point those friends and loved ones won’t be there, the time to relish them is now.

In general I just want to appreciate my life, to know that I’ve had as much enjoyment as I could. I don’t want to end this life thinking “I should’ve”. I’m here now, I want to Be Here Now.

Enjoy your day!

Aside:Today is the Day, Was the Day, I’m Upside Down

Aside:Today is the Day, Was the Day, I’m Upside Down

I feel upside down sometimes, need change
I feel upside down sometimes, need change

Something weird happened to my post yesterday. Somehow another blogpost, a reblog from another blogger got attached to this post and it all got mucked up. Things got all upside down.

Here’s the original post….

Today, the other day really, is/was the day to re-connect with Gloria after an absence of, what, a year?

Gloria, is/was, my counselor. She helped me with a number of things, not the least of which was my depressive moods. That is perhaps a polite way of saying I was going through a depression.

I say ‘was’ because I think or hope, and pray, I am through it, at least the worst part of it. That being said my previous post would lead me to question that.

Bottom line is I was a little disappointed by the reunion. If you ever read this Gloria I’ll apologize in advance, it’s likely more my issue than yours and first off I probably shouldn’t be apologizing for my feelings anyway. Just seemed to be the polite thing to do.

My experience in our last session is likely clouded by my interpretation of interpersonal relations, those being of a somewhat coloured point of view which may or not be accurate. I need to temper my perceptions with the realities of life. Not everyone is intrigued with what I have to say, or have said, I had just hoped what I had said and done in past sessions would have been recalled with a little less effort and prompting on my part. Again, maybe I should apologize, this isn’t really the venue for critiquing after the fact, I was a full participant and could have spoken up to lay out my concerns at any time. I didn’t, my bad, ‘nuf said.

At any rate…….

My car is in the Honda hospital this afternoon and I thought I’d take the opportunity and alone time to have a beer while I waited (not at the garage) and do some blogging. Being that I go most places with some type of electronic device capable of posting that would be pretty easy, you’d think.

I arrived without incident at the pub, a short walk from the shop, and sat down to do my business. It just didn’t come, the words never arrived. And they never came with me, I was alone with my thoughts and without the ability to articulate them. No words, no post.

I did have my journal with me as well, and that’s something that doesn’t occur that frequently. This day it did. Perhaps paper writing would fit the bill.

A few words created with pen to paper must’ve started the creative juices flowing because I was able to put down some thoughts in my morning/afternoon pages but not the words I had trapped inside me. Many of those are still there, waiting to be broken free and see the light of day. But some did make it to paper and the inspiration to post as well came through.

So here I am, no epiphanies, but some thoughts nonetheless. As the previous post “What’s Wrong With Me?” impled, original post here, I am in a bit of a funk. Words are not free flowing, perhaps disjointed, but the words are here regardless.

Today was the day, it IS the day. I plan to enjoy it regardless.

Happy Valentine’s Day

Today is the Day, Was the Day, I’m Upside Down

Today is the Day, Was the Day, I’m Upside Down

I feel upside down sometimes, need change
I feel upside down sometimes, need change

Something weird happened to my post yesterday. Somehow another blogpost, a reblog from another blogger got attached to this post and it all got mucked up. Things got all upside down.

Here’s the original post….

Today, the other day really, is/was the day to re-connect with Gloria after an absence of, what, a year?

Gloria, is/was, my counselor. She helped me with a number of things, not the least of which was my depressive moods. That is perhaps a polite way of saying I was going through a depression.

I say ‘was’ because I think or hope, and pray, I am through it, at least the worst part of it. That being said my previous post would lead me to question that.

Bottom line is I was a little disappointed by the reunion. If you ever read this Gloria I’ll apologize in advance, it’s likely more my issue than yours and first off I probably shouldn’t be apologizing for my feelings anyway. Just seemed to be the polite thing to do.

My experience in our last session is likely clouded by my interpretation of interpersonal relations, those being of a somewhat coloured point of view which may or not be accurate. I need to temper my perceptions with the realities of life. Not everyone is intrigued with what I have to say, or have said, I had just hoped what I had said and done in past sessions would have been recalled with a little less effort and prompting on my part. Again, maybe I should apologize, this isn’t really the venue for critiquing after the fact, I was a full participant and could have spoken up to lay out my concerns at any time. I didn’t, my bad, ‘nuf said.

At any rate…….

My car is in the Honda hospital this afternoon and I thought I’d take the opportunity and alone time to have a beer while I waited (not at the garage) and do some blogging. Being that I go most places with some type of electronic device capable of posting that would be pretty easy, you’d think.

I arrived without incident at the pub, a short walk from the shop, and sat down to do my business. It just didn’t come, the words never arrived. And they never came with me, I was alone with my thoughts and without the ability to articulate them. No words, no post.

I did have my journal with me as well, and that’s something that doesn’t occur that frequently. This day it did. Perhaps paper writing would fit the bill.

A few words created with pen to paper must’ve started the creative juices flowing because I was able to put down some thoughts in my morning/afternoon pages but not the words I had trapped inside me. Many of those are still there, waiting to be broken free and see the light of day. But some did make it to paper and the inspiration to post as well came through.

So here I am, no epiphanies, but some thoughts nonetheless. As the previous post “What’s Wrong With Me?” impled, original post here, I am in a bit of a funk. Words are not free flowing, perhaps disjointed, but the words are here regardless.

Today was the day, it IS the day. I plan to enjoy it regardless.

Happy Valentine’s Day

Weekly Photo Challenge: Home

Weekly Photo Challenge: Home

home, hearth, fire, chair, reading
Home is Where the Hearth Is

Home….., home is where the hearth is.

That’s my take on a popular quote:

Home is Where the Heart Is
Pliny the Elder

Now I honestly have no idea who Pliny the Elder is but I’m sure a quick search on Google or Wikipedia would answer that question.

Home, is where you are most comfortable, perhaps the happiest. It can be in your own home or somewhere else with a loved one. It’s where you feel content, no false front required or desired. Hopefully home is with those you love most, your family, a wife, your children or your grandchildren.

family, loved ones, children, grandchildren
Family, Loved Ones

Home, where the cares of the world ease, where you can be at peace and problems outside your world evaporate.  It’s a place to care, and be cared for, to love and be loved.

Home ….. is Home.

I also feel at home outside, in my yard. I can be in my garden or just sitting under the maple tree with a book, perhaps a beer at my side and thoughts of relaxation and calmness washing over me. Not a care, nor a concern, a oneness with life and nature ….. hold on, maybe that’s the beer talking. Better take it easy……

adirondack, chair, peaceful, relaxation
Holy Place

I call that place under the maple tree and surrounded by cedars my ‘Holy Place’, and I look forward to visiting it again soon, when the spring sun comes and the warmth takes the snow away. It will be one of my outside homes.

Another area I like to call home is sitting on the deck. It’s a place to catch the morning rays of sun and perhaps the cool breezes as they wash over the space. I’ll likely hear the wind chimes playing their rich tones, like so many church bells tolling their virtues. I’ll be reading there too, or perhaps posting to the blog, or journaling my morning pages. I’ll feel the peace, the warmth of the sun and the calmness.

I will be ok there, in any of those places I call home. I can recognize my fortune and acknowledge my gratitude. It’s good to be home.

I Came Here to Write

I Came Here to Write

I have some time, I’m making time, I am waiting for my wife.

We escaped our small town today and ran away to the big city to shop, relax, eat, try and relax, eat, shop.  Something tells me the relaxing part may not come to fruition but likely the others will.

Once we arrived in Spokane our first stop was one of the largest malls in town, good planning or what. I knew it would be a good place to begin, the wife can limp around (another story) perusing all the sales etc. and I can scoot over to Barnes & Noble to look at books, and perhaps do some research.  My current ‘interest’ you see is SEO, otherwise known as Search Engine Optimization.

This interest in SEO maybe a fixation, will likely fade over time.  Heck, it may be gone by the time I leave the store, but it is with me now and with me strong. Seemed the least I could do was write about it.

It began when I read a post written by Lesley Carter at Bucket List Publications called “7 Great Ways to Improve Your Alexa Ratings”. I guess it really didn’t start there, but it was re-inspired when I read her numerous posts on ways to improve hits on your site and increasing your readers and followers. I don’t personally subscribe to that particular SEO service but I have taken part in Google’s Analytics and another service called HubSpot, a web marketing service.

I don’t proclaim to know if one site is better than the next, you’ll have to do the research and find that out for yourself, but the concept is sound I think. If you can improve your site by making small changes, by increasing links or putting the name of your site out there on other sites it can only help. I am just touching on the very basics here and there is certainly much more to it than that.

seo, books, bookstore, learning
All you wanted to know about SEO

So this bring me full circle. Here I am in Barnes & Noble, waiting for my wife and spending time searching the shelves for an appropriate book(s) on SEO.

Unfortunately I quickly become overwhelmed. The sheer number of books (and the cost) takes the wind out of my sails and I rapidly decide I will endeavour to learn most of what I need to know by getting library books and reading free articles on-line. That’s not to say the books aren’t beneficial, only that for me, right now, they are too much and too soon.

So, as the saying goes, if you can’t do something, you can write about it. Here I am, I came to write.

I’m Having Flashbacks

I’m Having Flashbacks

I began writing in my paper journal again, if 2 days in a row constitutes ‘again’. Like this blog, and my entries into it, I have been writing somewhat sporadically in my journal(s) of late. Don’t know why particularly, just have. Todays journal entry brought me here.

What sparked this particular blog post was the sun, that beautiful yellow orb that rises most days and brightens our lives. I say most days because although it certainly comes up every day (wouldn’t that be a bummer if it didn’t) we here in the beautiful Kootenays of southern BC don’t necessarily get to see it. We don’t always get to witness awe inspiring sunrises and feel the warmth on our faces. Today is such a day, the sun has shown it’s face.

20130129-092249.jpgI’m sitting here on the couch, beside the east facing windows. That yellow thing is shining through the glass, brightly now as its fully crested the mountains opposite us. The warmth is striking not only my face but is soaking into my spirit, melting away some of those doldrums that so often take hold of us. It inspires me, it takes me away and back to earlier times where I could sit outside on the deck and bask in it’s glory. It’s giving me flashbacks.

It was only months ago mind you but that time will soon be here again, Spring, a time of rebirth and freshening, not only of the land but of our spirits. A time of new beginnings.

But hey, I don’t want to rush away from this time, the present. To do so would be unfair and not keeping with good practice. I have learned that I must enjoy the present, be in the moment, this time happens only once.

“You can’t change the past, but you can ruin the present by worrying about the future”
– Unknown

I’m not sure who wrote that but it pretty well sums it up.

So I will enjoy the sun now, I will appreciate the day and what it brings while remembering the good times. Those good times will come again. I will be back outside, perhaps lamenting the heat, but taking solace in the shade with a cool drink. I may have flashbacks then too, but for now I will enjoy now. The past is gone and the future will be here soon enough.

I Bumped Into Gloria, I Came Away Healed

I Bumped Into Gloria, I Came Away Healed

I bumped into Gloria today. Well, I didn’t really ‘bump’ into her, but you know what I mean. I saw her, in Safeway.

At first sighting I didn’t recognize her. I was approaching the Starbucks counter to order my grande Americano, and chatting with my daughters friend, when I glanced toward the door and saw this lady that seemed somehow familiar. Now in hindsight I’m almost embarrassed to admit that but it has been about a year, or close to it, and in my defense I think she changed her hair colour, so that may have thrown me off. Funny I didn’t know her right off the bat because my previous relationship with her was a significant chapter in my life.

I started ‘seeing’ her maybe 2 or more years ago now. I am married but we met with my wife’s consent, she’s understanding that way.

Now, before you get the wrong idea I had best explain.

A few years ago I had finally reached the end of my long emotional rope, particularly at work. I felt depressed, unappreciated, and generally unhappy, so I went to my doctor to seek advice. Well, he interviewed me, gave me a questionnaire to fill out at home, then sent me packing to the hospital for a number of tests. Once I had completed the questionaire and the test results had come back to his office we had a second visit. There was nothing conclusive he said, nothing really abnormal or standing out that could cause me to feel that way. He had thought thyroid perhaps, or some vitamin deficiency, but I was normal, or healthy even. He recommended exercise, and perhaps avail myself of the ability to seek counselling, perhaps through my works EFAP (employee and family assistance) program. I did, and it was through that system I met Gloria. She became my counselor/therapist.

Healing
Healing

So to make a long story short we met for some time, and for the life of me I can’t remember exactly how long, but she has helped me in a number of ways. In almost every session I came away with something to think about, and some of them I’m still thinking about. I miss our sessions.

Bumping into her in Safeway I will take as a sign, as a signal that I need to re-connect.

I’m a big believer in fate, in the thought that things happen for a reason, that there are circumstances that are presented to us and if we see them, if we recognize them for what they are, they can lead us down the right road. They can guide us toward making the ‘right’ decisions, perhaps to choosing one avenue over another, and that one/correct way will lead us to the light (and no, I’ve not been smoking crack).

My sign today was seeing Gloria. She makes me remember from whence I came, my path, and the healing I’ve done. I’m close to the end of my journey and I feel so much better. I still have a ways to go but the healing has begun.

Well Lit, Dark Place

Well Lit, Dark Place

I think I’m emotionally in a dark place lately, but at times it seems well lit, make sense?

A light in the dark
A light in the dark

It’s just that I feel emotionally alone, and that’s ok, that seems to be the dark place, and while I may not prefer it I do accept it in some fashion. It’s the fact that I seem to understand and accept the situation that makes it feel illuminated or lit.

And I don’t think it’s the ‘depression’, I believe it’s something more fundamental, something basic to my make-up or mental health.  I’m beginning to think it’s just the way I am.  Some of my first thoughts are that it’s Aspergers syndrome or some similar condition or disorder.  Some variation of Autism.  You can read about some of the characteristics here, on Wikipedia. Isn’t this curious, my self-diagnosis?

What precipitated this latest ah ha moment was a tv show called Dexter.  The show is about a man who witnessed the brutal slaying of his mother when he was a young child and the horrific situation made him emotionally disconnected as an adult.  Now I’ve never had those experiences but it’s the ongoing patter of his ‘inside voice’ that caused me to think.

We are somewhat alike. I have some of those same attributes, difficulty relating to others on an emotional level, emotionally disconnected, unable (or unwilling) to bond on a deeper emotional level.  Almost uncaring.  And yet I do feel deep sadness at times, and elated happiness. This is where I’d differ from my friend Dexter, that is where I can see how we are not so much alike.

Still, it makes me think, why am I the way I am?  Perhaps I need a stronger light to overpower the darkness.