Hopefully you've already taken a peek at the "About" section to this little site and have an idea of what I'm trying to accomplish in my postings. Instead of repeating any sentiments here, whaddya say we just dive in head first? Ready? Let's do this...
While I was toying with the idea of starting a new blog I took a trip down to Southern California to visit a very dear friend in her new home. And as I pondered the direction my blog should take (how I would structure it, what I could possibly contribute to the great www that would be of any value to anyone, etc) I decided to stop stressing over the details and just enjoy my time with my friend. The ideas would come naturally if I let them, I thought. So I did a whole lot of ocean gazing instead, snuggled up in a brightly colored blanket, sitting next to someone who fills me with love regardless of our distance.
Shortly after taking a breath and a break from my brainstorming, like it always somehow manages to do, the Universe sent me my first little clue...
While shopping in Brentwood, a suburb of LA, (our attempts at a celebrity sighting failed, but our spirits were not crushed) I randomly picked up a small metal paperweight inside a cute gift shop with the following message inscribed;
Five Simple Rules For Happiness:
1. Free your heart from hatred.
2. Free your mind from worries.
3. Live Simply.
4. Give More.
5. Expect Less.
Clue #1 received, Universe.
Clue #2 came from the beautiful home I was staying in. I really loved a simple something my friend and her sister had started doing together called "Food For Thought". Essentially they take turns writing quotes, questions, thoughts, lyrics, poems, etc on a chalkboard located in the kitchen as a way to spark both internal and external conversations. It serves as a simple reminder to mull over some of life's great mysteries, and to appreciate the beauty in words. I was told at the beginning of my visit that I would be able to leave behind a FFT upon my departure. After a few days of considering my options, I chose a quote I recently stumbled upon from a blog I enjoy in which the author quotes, as she says, "the universe" . Here's what I wrote;
And for those of you without superman vision (I snapped this fuzzy shot of my messy handwriting with my BlackBerry), my Food For Thought read:
"What if, my darling, loneliness was simply a feeling of impatience, telepathically sent to you by friends you've yet to meet, urging you to go out more, do more, and get involved so that life's serendipities could bring you together...Would you still feel alone?" - the universe.
I can't tell you how much this question speaks to me. Loneliness as merely a message from future friends and loved ones encouraging you to be open? Beautiful. I loved the idea of FFT so much, I've decided to incorporate into my own life and home. I can't wait to have guest additions, too! Thanks, Billings sisters :)
Clue #3 came during a trip to Barnes and Noble. My friend is an ace with good read recommendations and must have pointed out about a dozen books to me that afternoon. I eagerly jotted down each suggestion in my BlackBerry memos, making excited mental notes to check the library when I got home for their availability. Then she picked up a small book and said "You would really like this. I read it right after I read one of Pema Chodron's books and I just think this could suit you right now." Without a second thought or so much as glancing at the title, I purchased it. I'm not exactly sure why I had the urge to impulse purchase this particular book as opposed to any of her other great recommendations, but I will go ahead and believe it's for a good reason. The book is titled The Four Agreements and my hope is that after further reading (and digesting) of it's teachings I'll be able to write a full blog post on it. For now, I hope you'll trust that its simple message is more applicable to my life (and probably yours) than one paragraph will allow me at this time. OK, OK...As a teaser, these are the "four agreements"; 1. Be impeccable with your word. 2. Don't take anything personally 3. Don't make assumptions. 4. Always do your best...so far so good, yea?
Sitting in the airport Wednesday night waiting for my quick flight (quick, *free* flight actually, as I'd used a free e-certificate to purchase this travel...winner!) to SF my thoughts wandered back to the creation of this blog. I'd just spent 5 days with a best friend (practically a sister) in beautiful San Clemente. We'd laughed and shared. We ate delicious food. We listened to music, read books and watched the ocean. I was heading back home to start a great new job. I felt I was gaining new perspective all the time and continued to be pleasantly surprised at how the Universe kept finding unique ways to send me encouragement. I was learning to be open to all things. What was this funny little feeling welling up inside me, causing me to smile so awkwardly for no reason in front of my fellow travelers? I checked my heart, sure to be present in this moment, and whaddya know...I was thankful. I wanted to pass it along to everyone on my flight! Give out hugs! High fives for everyone! Share my headphones with the lady next to me while we tapped our toes together, wordlessly enjoying a good song to feed our souls! How could I spread these good vibes without being arrested (or tasered, I hear you pee yourself when that happens)? How could I somehow preserve this gratitude; store it away for a rainy day when trouble may find its way into my life and try to trip me up? Where could I build a savings account of gratitude to help support myself on the less chipper days?
And thus, a blog was born.