Tag Archives: gifts

30 Days of Gratitude to Finish 2020: Day 31

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Happy Last Day of 2020!

Today is also the last day of this series of 3 Gratitudes.  I hope, though, that you continue each day to think of at least 3 things you’re grateful for.  Scientists have proven the immense physiological and psychological benefits of gratefulness and, of course, for centuries spiritual leaders have been telling us that being grateful is the right way to live life.

In keeping with my challenge this week, these are 3 gratitudes related to difficulties:

The difficulty:  Yesterday we discovered another setback knotted up in the mess of our beloved family member’s finances.  After a year of digging through the muck and mire, it’s very, very discouraging to still be finding surprises.

  • I am grateful I have a team of family members standing strong and helping me to stand strong during this continuing discovery and working-through-to-solutions process;
  • I am grateful for these heartbreaking difficulties because they’re teaching me that it’s possible to take the next tiny step, in spite of my overwhelming desire to run far, far away;
  • I am grateful that I’ve learned to lob myself softballs when looking for the tiny next step to take—find the little bit of action I can take that’s well within my capabilities, that’s easy for me to do.
  • Bonus gratitude:  I am grateful for the deeper compassion I have developed through this process of caring for my loved one.  I am much more attuned and sensitive to people who are vulnerable.  I do what I can to help and protect them, including supporting agencies, organizations, and individuals who are also watching out for and protecting people who are very vulnerable.

Feel free to share in the comments below the difficulties for which you are grateful.  Thank you!

If you think these posts will benefit loved ones, friends, and others you know, please feel free to share them!  Thank you!

HAPPY NEW YEAR!  I’m excited for the Big Adventure awaiting us in 2021!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

30 Days of Gratitude to Finish 2020: Day 30

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These are 3 difficulties that I’m grateful for:

  • I am grateful I was furloughed from my job.  A company graciously made room for me as my original company gets back on its feet.
  • I am grateful to be temporarily at this new company—even though it’s only temporary==because the  new company has a wonderful attitude toward its employees;
  • I am grateful for the department I’m in and the team members I’m working with because they are welcoming, helpful, and supportive.
  • I am so grateful that everything is working out—and I trust that everything will continue to work out well.

Feel free to share in the comments below the difficulties for which you are grateful.  Thank you!

Please share this post with your friends and loved ones.  Thank you!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

30 Days of Gratitude to Finish 2020: Day 29

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As I was driving to work this morning, I was thinking about this month of 30 Days of Gratitude.  I realized that the vast majority of my gratitudes were all things that brought me joy and made me feel good in some way—peaceful, content, confident, valued…. 

Then I thought about the “bad” stuff—the obstacles, difficulties, and heartbreaks.  I don’t think many of those—if any!—made it to my gratitude list…yet. 

Okay.  I’m going to challenge myself for the rest of this week—the remainder of 2020—to think about the difficulties and heartbreaks and other “bad” stuff that happened this year.  I’ll view it from the lens of how each one of those events may have benefitted me—and then be grateful for that benefit. 

Would you like to join me?

Here goes!  These are my 3 gratitudes for today–difficulties that I’m grateful for:

  • I am grateful to have taken over the care of a beloved family member.  It’s been a very difficult journey getting everything straightened out, but I’m grateful because now I know for sure our beloved relative is getting the care, the supplies, and the services that she needs.  That all of her needs—including her financial affairs—are being handled with love and compassion;

 

  • I’m grateful that my family has come together to support me in taking care of our beloved family member.  They have devoted countless hours of hard work in untangling the financial mess, thinking through the home maintenance issues with me and coming up with creative cost-effective fixes, and supporting me as I’ve dealt with attorneys, accountants, and other professionals;

 

  • I’m very grateful for the lessons learned from this whole experience:  family really does come together in a time of trouble; there are professionals who will stand beside you and fight for what’s right for your loved one; many times my heart broke but that breaking made my heart able to be more compassionate and hold more loving kindness; I don’t have to “do it all”—others will help; I don’t have to have everything figured out and have answers for every possible permutation of a problem, I can let it unfold as it will and handle the issues as they come up; I can let go and step back and let others step forward and shine as they unleash their talents and expertise.

 

As much as we may want to stomp our foot and cry “Unfair!” when “bad stuff’ happens, we also have to admit that there is usually a silver lining.  Are there difficulties you experienced this year that now in looking back you have come to recognize the gift they gave you?  Feel free to share your gratitudes in the comments below.  Thank you!

Please share this post with your friends and loved ones.  Thank you!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

 

 

Blessed by You

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I wish that today and all days, everyone you meet is blessed by you. Just by your twinkling eyes, your bright smile, your gentle touch, and by your sparkling presence. Thank you for letting these gifts overflow to bless those all around you!  ~paraphrased from Brother David Steindl-Rast’s writings

 

You ARE a blessing! Never EVER forget that!!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

An Irish Blessing to Honor St. Patrick’s Day

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To honor St. Patrick’s Day, here is a blessing for luck, peace, and happiness (this blessing was originally posted on March 17, 2016):

May love and laughter light your days,

and warm your heart and home.

May good and faithful friends be yours,

wherever you may roam.

May peace and plenty bless your world

with joy that long endures.

May all life’s passing seasons

bring the best to you and yours!

 

May the luck and the blessings of the Irish be with you this whole week through.

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

One with Source

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As we look ahead to the upcoming week, we may be nervous about the difficulties we’ll be facing. This can leave us feeling unsure of ourselves and that we’re on shaky ground. This can leave us vulnerable to others’ opinions and judgments about us: that we’re wrong or not right, that we don’t have what it takes, that who we are is not good enough.

None of this is true!

But when these false statements are getting to each of us, SAY THESE STATEMENTS THAT ARE THE TRUTH ABOUT EACH OF US:

I am One with Source

I am blessed

I am sanctified

I am anointed

I am consecrated

I am favored

I am holy

I am sacred

I am redeemed

I am forgiven

I cherish myself because I am One with Source who infuses and envelops me with Mercy

I cherish myself because I am One with Source who infuses and envelops me with Grace

I honor myself because I am One with Source who reveres me

I honor myself because I am One with Source who venerates me

Source has ordained me to be who I am and has declared me to be Good

Source has appointed me to be me and has proclaimed that I am Holy

Source has decreed that I am Sanctified

Source is pleased with me

Source is delighted with me

I am One with Source

 

Say these statements to yourself as often as you need to this week. Feel free to tweak them so they resonate more deeply with you.

I am with you.

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

Thank You Friends and Loved Ones!

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As we craft soul-prospering lives for ourselves, we can go through challenging times, especially if we’re making seemingly drastic shifts and big changes. It can be very frightening to be out of our comfort zone. We can feel very alone and isolated.

Friends and loved ones to the rescue!

They hold our hand when we need it. They encourage us when we need a boost. They pick us up and dust us off when we fall. They cheer for us and celebrate us even when there seems to be no finish line in sight.

They like us and love us just the way we are.

Each one of our friends and loved ones adds a little something unique and special to our lives that without it, our lives would be so very different and diminished.

Thank you friends and loved ones! You ROCK!!!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

Start the Week Off Right: 7 Quotes

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These seven quotes are short and to the point. That means they’re easy to remember and easy to repeat to yourself often, especially when things aren’t going as planned.

 

Dear Stress, let’s break up. ~Anonymous

Take action. Any action taken—even the “wrong” action—is better than not taking even the tiniest of actions. ~Anonymous

Actually, I can. ~Anonymous

Do not compare yourself to others. ~Anonymous

Smile and be glad because this too shall pass! ~Anonymous

Loving kindness is the most powerful force in the Universe. ~Anonymous

When in doubt, go to the library. ~Anonymous

 

Have a wonderfully soul-prospering week!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

Bullying – Not Just for Kids

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When someone mentions the word “bullying”, we think of the schoolyard, assuming that bullying is a problem only children face. We believe that when kids grow into adulthood, they drop their childish ways: We think they’ll become more understanding and compassionate, that they’ll develop mastery over their emotions, that they’ll learn to be helpful to others, and that they’ll strive to become the best version of themselves. This is the course we’ve followed and we figure that everyone else will, too.

But they don’t.

Some adult bullies carry their bullying ways from childhood into adulthood. Others were nice as youngsters but something happened along their pathway to adulthood that turned them into bullies.

The point is that bullying is not a problem just for children. We adults can—and do—face it every day, too. We can encounter adult bullies in a variety of settings such as clubs and organizations, churches, neighborhoods, within our group of friends, and at work.

We don’t foresee this, which is why it’s so shocking when we run up against it. We expect adults to behave like, well, adults. We don’t anticipate that they’ll humiliate, belittle, or sabotage us or that we’ll see them do this to others. When we experience bullying directly or indirectly (witnessing another being bullied), we’re left bewildered, stunned, and wondering if what we just experienced/witnessed really did happen.

The effects can be devastating. We can feel isolated and alone, which leads to anxiety and depression. Our self-confidence plummets, our work suffers, and our mental and physical health can be negatively impacted. Anxiety.org has published a good article on bullying in the workplace. It contains additional information and resources regarding workplace bullying. 

The good news is there are things we can do to help ourselves if/when we find ourselves in this type of situation. We can:

~Get out.

~Develop a support system.

~Pursue professional development opportunities.

~Feel good about ourselves.

~Take care of ourselves.

~Keep work in perspective.

We will talk more about these in upcoming posts. Stay tuned and check back often!

In the meantime, here are a few statements to say to yourself this week:

I am a child of the Universe, no less than the trees and the stars.

I am valuable and my thoughts, ideas, and talents are desperately needed in the world.

I am fully loaded with all I’ll need to create a wonderful life for myself.

I am someone’s miracle.

I am perfectly positioned to make my mark in the world.

I am so grateful that this situation is setting me up to be slingshotted decades ahead in my career and my life.

I am enlivened and aglow with the Divine Spark within me.

Repeat these statements first thing in the morning, several times throughout the day, and the last thing before going to bed. Let their power and inspiration infuse your mind, body, soul, and spirit.

You can do this, Pep Pal, especially since we’ll be doing it together!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

Soul-Prospering – My Writing: Sharing a Short Story (and a Blog Hop!) with You

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I believe each one of us is on this Earth for a specific reason and that reason is to live a soul-prospering life. When we do this, we’re contributing our unique combination of gifts, abilities, and talents to the overarching goal of creating a better world. In the process, we get to live a deeply satisfying and fulfilling life that matters profoundly.

With this in mind, I’d like to share what I’m doing to live my soul-prospering life. Since I’m the author of this blog, I’m sure it comes as no surprise that I like to write. Here is a flash fiction story that I wrote this summer. Flash fiction is a short story of 500 words or less, although some people say the upper limit is 1000 words.

A special treat for you is that this story is part of a blog hop.  At the end you’ll see links to others’ flash fiction stories.  This is my first time participating and I’m very excited about it.

My story is 493 words and is called Black Moon. I hope you enjoy it-enjoy the other stories as well!

Black Moon

Mama turned from the front window of our snug cottage hidden in the dark woods. Even though the lights were out, the star glow was enough to show me her worried face. “A Black Moon on All Hallow’s Eve.  I thought surely you’d– ”

“What, Mama? Whatever it is, I’ll do it.” I didn’t know what was upsetting her but I wanted to make her smile. “It’s still my birthday.  We can be happy about that, right?”

“Of course, my love!  The second New Moon in a month combined with your thirteenth birthday on All Hallow’s Eve. A very special night, indeed.”  Mama hugged me, her fuzzy sweater tickling my nose.

Rustling in the woods drew her to the window.

Oh! A sharp twinge in my hips.  I waited for pain but it didn’t come.  Instead, it felt…natural.

A sudden rush of raw power from Mother Earth coursed through me from my feet to my head.  What was going on?

Rather than fear, giddiness filled me. I bounded to Mama and threw my arms around her. “I lovelovelove the night!”

Mama laughed. “That’s because you’re a vampire.”  She growled, pretending to nibble my neck.

“No, Mama.”  I giggled.  “Then I couldn’t eat your yummy meatloaf, so full of garlic.”

“Hmmm, true.”  Mama pretended to think.  “I know!  You’re really a pixie or a wood sprite, and you fly like the wind.”

“Nope, not it.” I moved from her embrace and rolled my shoulders to ease the cramping. “Flying isn’t the only way to race like the wind.”

“Then you’re a zombie.”  She lumbered toward me, arms outstretched.

I shrieked. “No, Mama!”  The bones in my feet crackled as I dashed away from her.

“Then you’re a fairy or maybe an elf.”

“They’re too small and scrawny and won’t make decent toothpicks much less tasty tidbits.”

“Well then, that leaves one thing.  You’re a–”

Yips and barks close to our cottage.

Too close.

“Oh no!”  She let out a cry of fear.

My gaze sharpened on her. She looked delicate as she backed away from the window.

A howl echoed on the still night air.  My pulse quickened.  My bones ached, muscles throbbed. It felt so good! I stretched in anticipation.

She blindly reached back for me.   “Hide! Wolves!”

Yes Mama, yes. That’s it!

I snapped my jaws now filled with gleaming teeth. I crept toward her, reveling in the power of my new form.

She saw me. Surprise on her face.

I inhaled. Ahhh, the sharp tang of fear.  My mouth watered.  I moved in.

A hard thump at the door followed by a rumbling growl that shook my bones. I stopped, crouched. Uncertain.

She dropped to her knees, relief flooding her face. Now on her hands, too. Broadening, elongating.

Huge.

Now I was surprised.

She padded to me, her claws clicking on the hardwood floor. “Welcome, Pup!” She nuzzled me, her soft fur tickling my nose.  “Come, meet your true family.”

 

Happy Halloween, my dear Pep Pals! Feel free to share in the comments what you do that’s soul-prospering. Thanks!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

Here are the links to the other stories in this blog hop.  Have fun reading!

  1. <a href=”https://inkmapsandmacarons.com/en/snow-white-tabloid-style” target=”_blank” rel=”noopener”>Snow White Tabloid Style, by Fannie Suto</a>
  2. <a href=”https://samanthadunawaybryant.blogspot.com/2018/10/31-of-31-days-of-halloween-writing.html” target=”_blank” rel=”noopener”>Starving Artist, by Samantha Bryant</a>
  3. <a href=”https://wp.barbaralund.com/storytime-blog-h…ers-origin-story/ ‎” target=”_blank” rel=”noopener”>The Halloween Dance, by Barbara Lund</a>
  4. <a href=” www.elizabethmccleary.com/the-ghost-in-my-yard-blog-hop-october-2018” target=”_blank” rel=”noopener”>The Ghost In My Yard, by Elizabeth McCleary</a>
  5. <a href=” https://www.katharinagerlach.com/posts/storytime-bloghop-halloween-2018/” target=”_blank” rel=”noopener”>Her Majesty, by Katharina Gerlach</a>
  6. <a href=”https://ctbridges.com/holloween-blog-hop” target=”_blank” rel=”noopener”>Chris Bridges Posting Storytime Blog Hop. Give her shout out and say Hello!</a>
  7. <a href=”https://dailypeptalks.wordpress.com/2018/10/31/5609/ ‎” target=”_blank” rel=”noopener”>Black Moon, by Lauren M. Catherine</a>
  8. <a href=”https://www.jqrose.com/2018/10/storytime-blog-hop-poes-heart-celebrate.html” target=”_blank” rel=”noopener”>Poe’s Heart, by J. Q. Rose</a>
  9. <a href=”https://wp.me/p1z8Ja-3h” target=”_blank” rel=”noopener”>Hanks A Lot, by Joe Bouchard</a>
  10. <a href=”http://reprobatetypewriter.com/storytime-october-2018” target=”_blank” rel=”noopener”>In The Gray Lake, by Karen Lynn</a>
  11. <a href=”http://www.vanessawellsbooks.com/blog.html” target=”_blank” rel=”noopener”>The Right Honorable Brotherhood of Spirits, Poltergeists and Ghosts, by Vanessa Wells</a>
  12. <a href=”http://billbushauthor.com/october-2018-storytime-blog-hop” target=”_blank” rel=”noopener”>Life of a Pumpkin, by Bill Bush</a>
  13. <a href=”http://www.ginafabio.com/posts/storytime-blog-hop-why-should-i/” target=”_blank” rel=”noopener”>Why Should I?, by Gina Fabio</a>
  14. <a href=”https://www.junetakey.com/storytime-blog-hop-october-31-2018-have-a-hallowing-halloween/” target=”_blank” rel=”noopener”>Reaper, by Juneta Key</a>