4 Tips To Help You Express Yourself

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What is expression? It’s the art of making one’s self known. Continue reading

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Warmth

deeclarknz.comI absolutely love the feel of the sun’s warmth on my face. I always have. When the chill of winter disappears, I’m in heaven. Every fiber of my being comes alive. A warm glow surfaces to my outlook, thawing my mind and muscles. It’s like a blanket that warms my heart and ignites the inward, hidden parts of my soul. Mornings are my favourite; the beauty of sun light, drinking in it’s warmth on my face and sipping from a steaming mug.

I am smitten with the sun. The warmth reminds me of love.

Or a friend seated across the room in the cozy chair, warming my heart.

Or resting my head on a friend’s shoulder letting the fuzzy warmth of her hug flow through me. The kind of warmth that clicks your bones back into place, smooths out your muscles and make your blood sing a soft lullaby all the way around your body.

Love is that micro-moment of connection that you share with another living being; showing some warmth to get warmth in return.

I smile with relief knowing somebody found ways to love me.

Love comforts, it is gentle, it is warm and you can feel it within your entire being.

Like dozens of luxurious satiny pillows, embracing you from all directions into safe lulling warmth, isolating you from the sharp cold edges of the world.

“If the world seems cold to you, kindle fires to warm it.” (Lucy Larcom)

Love is so irresistibly beautiful…

Our love should radiate like the sun, warming everything it touches.

Imagine that the sun is shining in your heart. Allow it to light it up so that there are no dark corners.

Everything is pure and clear and the warmth of the sun in your heart fills you from head to toe with a sense of wellbeing.

Let it surround you with the feeling of a warm embrace.

Open your heart as wide as you can so that the sun in your heart has a chance to go as far as possible with its beautiful rays of light and its nourishing strengths.

Let it shine upon the people near to you. Let your heart bring warmth and love to the people that you know or can think of, have heard about or seen, or just assume to be there.

The sun is capable of nurturing growth. Feel love take root in your heart and spring upward.

The more strength it has, the more warmth others will feel.

Give the gift of love and compassion and care and concern.

SMILE.

All the statistics in the world can’t measure the warmth of a smile.

It expresses love and tenderness.

Keep each other warm. Share your strengths.

Feel the buoyancy and the lightness that comes from giving love. Your heart will light up, and be nourished.

The sun on my face and in my heart reminds me of warmth, clarity, and deep satisfaction.

Try it. Turn your face upward and let the the sun warm you through and through.

Bask in the moment. Experience the warmth. Feel the refreshing.

(And should the sun be hiding behind a cloud where you live…open your heart, it feels pretty much the same.)

Dee

The WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge: Warmth

The World I Want Begins With Me

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There is so much pain in the world. The murders displayed on the news breaks my heart and reduces me to tears.

It can feel overwhelming on many levels.

Yet, the world I want begins with me.

Anger can be a useful emotion as it directs me to a core issue that is out of balance in my life. It is destructive when I allow it to cause me to react in a way that is devastating to the lives around me.

Anger is the core issue in murder. Period. Uncontrolled, unresolved anger drives a person to act dispicably. Taking someone’s life occurs along way down the pathway of angry emotions. Often, it begins with contempt. Contempt directs our thoughts and attitudes toward fear, negativity, prejudice and hatred.

You must first look within yourself to eliminate the fear, the anger, and the imbalance in your life.

Then and only then can you move forward to create peacefully and powerfully the changes needed in the world.

Today, following the news of 4 killings in Israel, I read that a young Israeli woman called for acts of kindness in response to the murders. This cry for good only comes from a heart that is at peace from within and an understanding that an eye-for-an-eye does not create a better world.

Yesterday, as I was shopping for some treats to have at home, I came across a woman and her grand baby that I had not met from my community. They were retrieving a small bottle of chocolate milk  from a cooler in celebration. The child had recently been weaned from her mother’s breast. I stopped and celebrated with them. I cheered for the 2 year old and congratulated her.

I introduced myself to the grandmother and her face beamed with happiness. It kind of shocked me, really. Who am I that meeting me in the grocery store and sharing a few kind words would make any real difference in this woman’s life? But we all know how it feels to have someone appreciate our children or our accomplishments, don’t we?

The woman told me that most of her time was spent working at a local restaurant and she asked me to stop in and visit her. I will, too.

That is how we change the world. I can not fight terrorists in a foreign country but I can…I CAN…work on my heart so that it is open to the people in my community. I can work diligently on the big issues in my heart that prevent my life from being worthwhile. I can also learn self-control so that my issues do not spill over onto the people I meet.

There was a day in my journey that I may never have given this woman the time of day. It might have only been the fact that I was preoccupied with my own world, my busy schedule or that I was exhausted from a full day at work.

People matter. People are what make the world – the world. So, it matters that we relate to each other in meaningful ways, no matter how small or insignificant it may seem.

The world I want begins with me.

I must be a person who makes life worth living, first, in my own life and then shared with those around me.

I have failed many times in my past at this. I whisper a prayer. I get back up. I look inward. I follow wisdom and truth until the values I want to see in the world are firmly planted in my own heart and behaviours.

How about you? Will you join me and peacefully and powerfully create the changes needed in the world – beginning with yourself?

Be kind to someone today and demonstrate a better way of life.

Journey on, dear reader,

D

 

 

Multiplied Love

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The heart has an amazing capacity for love. It expands so that love can be multiplied. You don’t have to worry, your heart will work with you. The more you fill it, the more it can take! Even if broken, it won’t leak. You might think it can’t take anymore, but it can. It will mend and get right back to the work it does best…loving.

a glimpse inside a heart of pain

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as you read my blogs, you will often hear me make the statement “look inside your heart” when attempting to empathize with what someone else is feeling or going through. i believe there are similarities deep within all of our hearts…common threads of emotions whether happiness and joy, or pain and fear.

today, i’m sharing an example of how this works.

20140306-121812.jpgsitting in a cave alone, tired and afraid, the Psalmist David writes these words. just see, if by looking inside your heart, whether or not you can understand his difficulty and relate to the essence of his pain.

he was on the verge of loosing his courage and will to fight.

this is his, “i need some help here. i’m about to loose it!” (as we would say today).

I cry out to the Lord.

I beg the Lord to help me.

I tell him my problems;

I tell him about my troubles.

I am ready to give up.

But you, Lord, know the path I am on,

and you know that my enemies have set a trap for me.

I look around,and I don’t see anyone I know.

I have no place to run.

There is no one to save me.

Lord, I cry out to you for help:

“You are my place of safety.

You are all I need in life.”

Listen to my prayer.

I am so weak.

Save me from those who are chasing me.

They are stronger than I am.

Help me escape this trap,so that I can praise your name.

Then good people will celebrate with me,

because you took care of me.

-David, psalmist

20140306-122131.jpgjust remember, when you feel like you can’t take anymore…

you’re not alone…

others know how you feel…

and

if you’d like to whisper a prayer for help…this is a great one.

D

love is for everyone

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i hope you have a fantastic Valentine’s Day!

i also hope that you are not wasting one minute on feeling lonely, depressed or down if you do not have a special Valentine because…

it’s about love…

and love is available more than one day a year…

all around you are people who love you and celebrate the fact that you are dear to their heart!

Please remember, you are loved!

Happy Valentine’s Day!

The Journey of Friendship

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there are many routes into a person’s heart

which makes you a treasured friend.

each act of kindness.

each moment shared.

each word of praise or comfort.

these are the ways-

the paths, which through time become highways, along which lie

the journey of friendship.
-Stuart and Linda McFarlane

Christmas in the heart and Christmas in the air

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It is Christmas in the heart that puts Christmas in the air. ~W.T. Ellis

I can hardly believe another year has nearly gone by. It just seems like yesterday that we were gathering the family together around the Christmas tree. Yet, Thanksgiving is behind us (I hope that you had a great Thanksgiving. Mine was lovely), my Christmas decorations are up and I have heaps of shopping yet to do. Honestly, I promise myself every year that I will get a jump on my Christmas shopping …but this is one area that I do not over organize.

Christmas is my favorite holiday. I love Christmas movies, Christmas music and the hustle bustle of shoppers. I enjoy sitting with the Christmas tree lit and my cup of spiced tea in hand…even though it’s not usually dark enough in NZ until well after 10 pm.

I hope that you and your family will have the loveliest of holidays this season.

It is Christmas in the heart that puts Christmas in the air. Mr. Ellis had that so right.

So, don’t stress. Relax. Enjoy. Celebrate.

Do you have a family Christmas tradition that makes the holiday special in your heart? I’d love to hear about it if you wouldn’t mind sharing it with me and my readers.

My daughter and I like to spend Christmas Eve together in our new Christmas PJs and watch White Christmas.

It is beginning to feel a lot like Christmas in my heart…how about yours?
D

One Way Peace Is Lost

20131022-204517.jpghow valuable is peace?

tranquillity

calmness

restfulness

quietude

silence

stillness

nothing missing, nothing broken

i value peace highly in my life.

i used to trade it at the drop of a hat…

not any more.

i need tranquility more than i need to be right.

i need calmness more than i need my way.

i need stillness more than i need to give way to my angry feelings.

i want lasting relationship more than i want strife.

a consistent atmosphere of peace requires preparation.

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you must prepare your heart and mind.

you must prepare yourself with the proper tools; wisdom, Truth and commitment.

no matter what you face, if you refuse to trade your peace…if you refuse to give up your peace…
you have a mighty weapon to use against whatever it is you are facing.

Paul reminded the people who lived in Phillipi that there is peace that passes all understanding and it will guard ( keep guard over) your heart and mind…

peace is like a guard standing watch over your mind and heart…

just think of all the things that could not even get near to your heart because peace is standing there preventing it entering your heart… Or mind!

for me,

that makes peace very valuable!

inquisitive minds…have to know

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as i venture along this journey of mine, i find it helpful to learn what other women have done that relate to what i might be going through at any given moment.

this is not unusual, really. many of us reach out to others during trying times for advice, grab someone to share what we have accomplished and learn from the successes and failures of others.

today, i was taking a look at Eve. you know, the first woman mentioned in the Bible. some of you may not believe she existed. you may think of her as a mythical character. even with that train of thought, many people look at fairy tales, myths, novels, etc. to find expressions and similarities of their own personalities, hopes dreams and creativity.

i tend to believe she was real. i believe in creation.

therefore, i like to think that i can discover important truths about myself and the way i was created by looking at her life.

she was first named ishah meaning woman. Adam named her. it was the job he was given…name the creatures within the garden. he chose this name because she was formed from a part of his being.

as i looked at her activity within the garden, these words stood out in my mind: explores, interrogates, decisive, independent, curious, tricked, victimized, felt victimized, trusting, tests boundaries, willingness to try something new, willingness to disobey, minimize consequences, desires the forbidden, and ability to effect major/impacting change.

i had to chuckle.

although, along my journey, my goal has been to discipline some of these attributes…i could relate!

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let me just say… to any gentleman who might be cheering at this moment and pointing even a jesting finger to say that he can relate because some female in his life shows many of these attributes and that Eve was the beginning of all of mankind’s problems…”settle down”! lol. i am well aware that we women can be troublesome at times but i’m not debating, confirming or addressing the “it’s all the woman’s fault” mind set here.

i am encouraging women to take an objective look at themselves…and you’re not helping. lol

Eden means to be fruitful or plentiful. A delightful place; a paradise. A state of innocence, bliss, or ultimate happiness.

i don’t know about you but i don’t live in Eden. however, there i something deep down in my heart that searches for Eden in my life.

therefore, i find myself on an exploration. do you?

i want to know the “keys” to plenty. i look for delight for my senses, my environment and experiences. i love the idea of paradise even  if it’s on a holiday or vacation. i want to be happy. i want to disconnect from the things that prevent happiness and pursue the ones that will provide it. i want bliss in my relationships.

so, i explore all of the possibilities. will more education help me attain plenty? will better work ethic help? how can i manage stress, conflict, difficulties and barriers? i read, i search the internet, i have deep and meaningfuls with my girlfriends.  i am exploring.

when i come across something that seems reasonable, i am not afraid to try something new. when i say reasonable, do you know how many things sound reasonable? i am pretty trusting (ok, if you insist on naïve, fine) and i really do not expect to be taken for a fool, tricked or victimized. so, when i get information that sounds reasonable…why not give it a try?

in fact, i can get an idea in my head and the process starts. i am curious. i wonder, i think it over, i dream about it. i look at it (from a few angles-don’t want to get too quirky about it because after all…i’m planning to give this idea a go and i don’t really want to be talked out of it).

i find that at that point desire tends to take over. kind of weird when i think about it. but it does. i’m not really talking about passionate desire here. just desire… the “i want” place in my mind. once i’m at this place…it may not happen right away, but seriously, i’m going to give it my best effort to make it happen.

that is when i interrogate. shhh! don’t tell my husband i am saying this because he tells me all the time that i ask so many question about things that it can begin to feel like an interrogation. lol…funny but maybe NOT.

i want to know, “well, what if we…” and the reply comes. no, not good enough…”how about…” the reply…ummm, “you are not getting it, i think that if….” and when i have really got something stuck in my brain, if i don’t get co-operation, i have been known to decide to just go ahead and do it myself! (remember the words that i said came to mind earlier? decisive, independent, willingness to test the boundaries?)

whew! sometimes i get lucky and it works out. other times, well, let’s just say i have learned that i don’t exactly like the taste of crow.

some of those decisions have brought a myriad of change to my life. again, some good…some not so much.

while these attributes can at times get us women into trouble, they are strengths as well.

it is because we are creative, curious and desire that we can produce lovely homes, nurturing atmospheres and organized, well functioning lives.

we just have to be able to apply the appropriate wisdom.

there are things that my family have to trust me on. when they are staring at food they have never eaten before or that is more healthy than other choices. i have researched and put in the time to prepare a lovely meal. when i insist that they put things away in their proper place (which i have prepared) so that when they need them next they are where they can be found. when i am cautioning them about safety/wisdom/common sense because i do not want them to experience pain.

the attributes that can get me into trouble, when used properly can make life easier, more balanced or effect a change that is vital.

that’s a good thing.

the results are then a more harmonious life. i think that was Eve’s purpose. to bring a harmony that didn’t exist.

for me, in my quest for Eden, that would be my greatest desire…to use the gifts that i have been created for to bring harmony to my life.

i have to tell you though, even when i am doing my best to apply wisdom…it sneaks up on me…

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this week, i got into my head that i needed a place for my dryer. in my new house, the washer attachments are in the bathroom and there is no place in there for my dryer. the garage has no electricity set up in it so that was out. there is a small room off the kitchen but i have it designated for an office where i can blog, do my admin duties for our business and well,…it’s my space. there was no other suitable place in the house for my dryer…but i eyed this little cupboard that housed the hot water heater. it was deep enough (well, i measured it in a woman-kind of way and it seemed to be a reasonable size and solution). i was just going to put it in there myself because it looked like a reasonable solution to my dilemma. excect, i had one problem. i’m short. the hot water heater sits in the bottom of that cupboard and where i needed the dryer to go was up high. ugh! i had to present this to my beloved. and well, let’s just say, he is not always easy to convince. i had explored my possibilities. i had made a decision. i had developed a strong (and i mean strong) desire for the dryer to be in that cupboard (i did not want it in the middle of the floor or in any of my well-put-together rooms…because it did not fit the décor). so, i started the interrogation, “dear, i have had an idea…”, “do you think, that possibly we could…”. to my amazement…he didn’t disagree. in fact, he said he would look at it. i have learned that that is a good thing…so, i dropped it until he got around to looking at it…after all, i could do that because not everything was finished with my unpacking, etc and i had a little time up my sleeve that i could slot patience into. lol when he did get around to it. he measured it first. like, really measured it…the way a man measures. you know what’s coming, right? in his estimation, it was not going to fit. excuse me? that did not work for me. not at all. nothing would do except that i see it up there! he had questions like: “how are you going to vent it? the door won’t close on the cupboard and do you really want that? if i get it up there, are you going to bug me to take it back down? couldn’t you put it on the front porch?” none of it mattered. i politely reminded him that it was just a simple, little, heart’s desire to see my dryer up in the cupboard. and much to my surprise, he did it…he lifted the dryer up into the cupboard.

and it didn’t fit!

what?

and of course, nothing then would do until he took the hideous thing down!

i’m typing this and i’m laughing at myself.

i’m also thinking that i am really glad that it wasn’t like taking an apple off of a forbidden tree or anything that would change the course of life!

it helps me to see my “woman-ness”…that there is a part of me that needs to be tamed, disciplined and guarded. that there is wisdom, real wisdom for other areas of my life and i can’t allow these attributes to cloud my decision making ability, my purpose, or ability to stand on truth.

what? the dryer? oh yeah, well, it is sitting in the kitchen…but, i came to terms with the fact that, hey, at least i am in a proper house and not the old smoko room anymore…that one little inconvenience was not going to turn my world upside down and….

i would explore with my readers…got any reasonable ideas i could use? any creative storage ideas for a large appliance that i want to make disappear but still keep handy enough to use it when i need it? can you help a girl out here? 😉

have a great weekend!

D