In the wake of the horror that occurred at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown Connecticut, I’d like to remind myself of the good in the world. As my heart aches for the unimaginable loss suffered by the families in Newtown, I would like to share some moments that restore my faith in humanity. While it may only be a temporary fix, at least it transforms my sadness to joy. Happy New Year everybody
Photos courtesy of Buzzfeed.com unless otherwise stated.
The parents who made their son’s wheelchair into the best Halloween costume ever
The doctor who offered free medical care after Hurricane Sandy
The police officer who bought shoes for a barefoot homeless man
The famous rugby player who visited his biggest fan in the hospital
The man who soothes his arthritic dog that saved his life
Source: johnschoep.zenfolio.com / via: buzzfeed.com
These candidates for Parents of the Year award
And for every single moment anything like this happened.
In my ongoing quest to organize my apartment, I have found great storage use from old crates. While this is not a new concept (and reminise of many college dorms!) – my take on plastic crates is to PAINT THEM!
Spray paint works best. Which is unfortunate because I try to avoid the spray paints. Bad for the environment and expensive ($5 for only 16 oz of paint). However the coverage is great! You can see in the photo below how ordinary plastic crates can become extraordinary for your storage uses with just a simple spray of paint!
Old milk crates make great storage units. Now you can bring them back to life with a simple spray of paint!
I’ve recently fallen in the love with the idea of refurbishing furniture! I love it for many reasons. Primarily, I reuse furniture that would otherwise be thrown away. AND I get a fresh piece of furniture …for free (well, almost)!
I have a few pieces I’ve already refurbished and will update this blog with the finished product. Regrettably, I didn’t photograph before, during and after! But I will begin to do so!
For now, I leave you with my 4th refurbished piece, the bookcase!
I took a crappy old bookcase (very ugly) and tore off of the cardboard backing. I primed the shelves with a primer (Zinsser!) and painted them a toasty taupe. I then cut pallet board wood (mega job!!) to line the back of the shelves – in replacement of the cheap cardboard. And Ta-Da! I love it! It is sturdy and you can see the pallet wood behind the books – very rustic. Stay tuned!
The pallet wood shows through for a rustic country look!
Here is something I really cannot understand. Fellow runners who do not smile when we pass each other. When I run, I feel fantastic! Okay, maybe not while I’m chugging up that hill, but generally I’m happy. And what makes me even happier is seeing other runners.
Running is a mind sport. It’s your mind that keeps you going all those kilometers. It’s what’s in your head (or what you tell yourself) that gets you up those hills, that gets you out the door and what makes you sign up for those races. Once your body is trained, it’s all in the mind.
So when I pass other runners it’s not a competition. There is no race (and even if it were, I would still smile). Endorphins are firing, the sun is shining and we’re lucky to be healthy. To be able to run! So I often wonder, what is up with people who don’t smile back? Could be they’re lost in thought, oblivious to their surroundings. Very possible and I often find myself lost in thought as well.
If you happen to be a runner, smile back when someone smiles. It feels good, its encouraging and above all, it says we’re in this together.
I’ve always been drawn to meditation. I believe the merits of proper mediation can bring about positive change. In my efforts to start meditating I came across some useful tips I thought I would share…
Start with posture. Your posture must be very comfortable and allow you to stay perfectly still. Ideally, legs are crossed and fingers clasped. Close your eyes. Now if you can… stop the mind from thinking. For me, this is often the most difficult part. And finally, relax. Totally relax.
When we cross our legs and clasp our fingers it allows our energy circuits to flow. And since eyes are the doors to the mind, so should our eyes be closed. It requires my full concentration to perfectly relax. Relaxation is one of the most important aspects of meditation because when the body relaxes the mind can “travel”.
If this is all starting to sound a bit too hare krishna, remember that meditation is a mental journey. According to vibrantenergy, the mind is nothing but a bundle of thoughts and the trick is not to go behind the thoughts. But rather cut the thought, and come back to the breath..
Always. Witness. The. Breath.
To witness the breath means allowing the natural inhalation (or exhalation) happen on it’s own. This also helps with the whole relaxation process. At this stage of meditation I’m usually done my session. Which begs a final question: How long do I meditate? The meditation guru suggests you meditate for as long as your physical age – if you are 25 you would meditate for 25 minutes.
Happy meditating 🙂
I set out in the blistering winter to run an errand. An avid walker I did not let the snow dissuade me from my walk. The weather was harsh with blowing wind and accumulating snow. As I trudged on, I caught sight of a gaunt elderly man. Sheltering himself from the elements, he sat shivering with a miserable look on his face. I thought about how difficult it must be – to be outside at this very moment. With the darkness pending and the cold unrelenting. I decided the very least I could do is bring this man a hot cup of coffee.
When I purchased the coffee, however, I could no longer find him. I searched along the street but alas he was nowhere to be found. In an attempt to salvage my good deed, I proceeded to offer the hot coffee to an outdoor construction worker, who politely declined. Plodding on toward home I made another attempt. Seeing a well-dressed, older man at the bus stop I asked if he’d like a warm cup of coffee while he waited. He also declined my “kind offer” and I begun to wonder if I looked like a nutcase, rather than a do-gooder.
My final attempt came when I fell into step with a nice, older man. We exchanged pleasantries at which time, before parting, I offered him the warm cup. What the heck!
Although the goal of this mission may have failed, it also served as a reminder of the importance of taking care of each other. If nothing else, than to remind the people who really need our help that we really do care.