• Civility and manners,  Personal growth

    Perceptions

    “We don’t see things as they are. We see them as we are.”~Anais Nin It’s easy to be blinded by our own perceptions or preferences, as French writer Anais Nin reminds us in today’s thought. Whenever I find myself offended or angered, personally or politically, I’m tempted to adopt the stance of self-righteousness. That’s when I need to ask myself if I’ve stopped to consider the reasons behind another person’s actions or opinions. Have I taken time to understand what that person might be going through at the time? Am I holding him or her to a standard that I always live up to myself? Is there another way to…

  • Arts & crafts,  Autumn,  Change,  Motivation,  Nature,  Personal growth

    Creative cycles

    “For a seed to achieve its greatest expression, it must come completely undone. The shell cracks. Its insides come out and everything changes. To someone who doesn’t understand growth, it would look like complete destruction.” ~Cynthia Occelli Nature often reminds us that growth and creativity are preceded by change — or “complete destruction” — especially in the fall. Here in the Midwest, some of our trees are just starting to drop their leaves and seeds, and soon will stage a brilliant color show before shedding completely. Likewise, the best way through a creative road block is to remove something that’s getting in the way. Sometimes I have to “undo” a…

  • Featured,  Personal growth,  Royal Oak Public Library,  Writing and creativity workshops

    “List Your Way to Self-Discovery” Workshop

    “Listmaking is the road from unknowing to knowing. No guru necessary. No therapist. No special diet. No need to suffer. Memories deep in your consciousness will emerge to fill in the blanks.” ~Ilene Segalove and Paul Bob Velick, List Your Self: Listmaking as the Way to Self-Discovery “LIST YOUR WAY TO SELF-DISCOVERY” October 5, 2022  7:00 PM – 8:30 PM at the Royal Oak Public Library – Friends Auditorium Everyone makes grocery lists and “to-do” lists. But did you know that other types of list-making can boost your mental health and improve life satisfaction? Personal lists can serve as tools to empower and understand yourself, help solve problems, and even…

  • Friendship and relationship advice,  Gratitude

    Meaningful gifts

    “Gratitude is an emotion that reflects our deep appreciation for what we value, what brings meaning to our lives, and what makes us feel connected to ourselves and others.” ~Brene Brown, Atlas of the Heart My nesting instincts always kick in this time of year. This month, I’m motivated to move furniture, reorganize my shelves, and donate old books to the library. Though it sounds like work, early fall cleaning makes me appreciate the seasonal changes — and the treasures in my home. The salt-glaze pottery shown in today’s photo is one example. It was a gift from my college pal, Libby, who moved to Virginia after graduation. I still…

  • Featured,  Grief and loss,  Motherhood,  Photo stories

    September and memories of Mom

    “There’s a story behind everything. How a picture got on a wall. How a scar got on your face. Sometimes the stories are simple, and sometimes they are hard and heartbreaking. But behind all your stories is always your mother’s story, because hers is where yours begin.” ~Mitch Albom, One More Day September is a bittersweet month — a month of longer shadows, golden light, shorter evenings, and rich, poignant sunsets. It’s the month when cottages are closed for the summer, school resumes, sweaters are pulled from storage, and autumn officially begins. In a way that only September can do, it feels like both a beginning and an ending. September 20…

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