“The power of the imagination makes us infinite.” John Muir
Archives for March 2014
As you know we have started spring cleaning but this year we are going green. Here’s a simple list with recipes to get you started.
Known to keep your refrigerator fresh, baking soda can also be used to deodorize your carpets and upholstery.
Also known as sodium borate, borax can eliminate odors, remove dirt, and act as an antifungal and disinfectant.
Castile soap works well as an all-purpose cleaner in addition to being a good laundry and dish soap.
Vinegar loosens dirt, deodorizes, disinfects, and removes mineral deposits and stains.
This common household product is an antifungal that helps kill germs and other bacteria.
Tub & Tile
1 2/3 cup Baking soda
1/2 cup Castile soap
2 tablespoon vinegar
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup Borax
1 cup vinegar
1 teaspoon Baking Soda
2 tablespoon vinegar
1/2 lemon juice
2 cup Arm & Hammer Super Wash Soda
2 cup Borax
1 bar Fels-Naptha grated
Mix all ingredients. Store in a container until ready to use. Use 1/8 cup for normal load or 1/4 cup for heavily soiled
Get ready everyone!!! Thursday, March 20, 2014, makes it official. Spring is here. It’s time to kick it in gear and get things done. Never mind the weather is still on the chilly side and snow seems intent on falling sporadically. We know that soon we will embrace “April Showers bringing the infamous “May Flowers” and “Sunny Skies” are on the way.
If you have not taken advantage of the winter and put your plans in place it is not too late. Get out whatever writing device that works for you and let your dreams turn into goals for the coming weeks. This is a simple act of getting your ideas out of your mind and recorded so that manifestation can begin. It is a “Spiritual Germination” of sorts.
Once you have your dreams, ideas and thoughts on a list you will begin to note what and where you need help. It will appear as if out of the blue there will be a special on your much needed services. You will also see what you need to weed out or let go in order to make your list a reality.
This will become a living, working document that will evolve over time. You will gather contacts, material sources and an ability to creatively seek the necessary help to complete your projects. As you ponder, read and think on your list you will attract what’s needed to make it happen.
So don’t put if off. Sit down make your list add some things that might normally cause you to hesitate. The idea is to get it out of your head, written and read so you can work toward it consciously and unconsciously. If you are stuck and do not know where to begin look forward to a future post where we provide a sample list.
Have you ever had those moments when clarity, direction or insight has come to your mind when you least expected it. Our lives’ are filled with many of those moments. We try to share our stories in a way that they could have been written by either one of us or you our readers. Our hope is that you will learn, grow, be inspired or transformed through our shared experiences.
One such story happened a several years ago while cutting the grass. This task was approached with pouting, complaining and a martyr spirit. Feeling sorry for myself, my heart said I have to do everything. Life just was not fair. As my emotions were giving way to these thoughts; I heard these words clearly, as if they were spoken aloud. “to much is given, much is required.” You have a lot so a lot is required of you; it caused me to stop dead in my tracks and say “thank you.”
The truth is I am blessed, we are blessed and you are blessed. We all have so much maybe not in the same quality or quantity. We have life, health, family, friends and things. We have opportunities and freedoms. The list could go on and on. When you find yourself complaining, grumbling and feeling sorry for yourself because of your spouse, your children, your job or whatever remember to be grateful. Take the time to take inventory. Sometime, when you have a lot, a lot is required. Just say “thank you.”
People around the world will be joining in the practice of Lent a 40+-day period of preparation for Easter. Often marked by prayer, fasting, abstinence and almsgiving this is a time for penitence. This Christian tradition is widely celebrated among the Catholic faith and some Protestants. We have adopted this practice and use it as a time to add value to our lives, to release what no longer serves us and to reconnect spiritually- cleansing our mind, body and spirit.
We use the “Transformation Made Simple” concept to join in this practice. During the 40+ period between Ash Wednesday and Easter we pick something we would like to give up. It could be simple things such as bread, coke, sugar, tea, idle phone time or some other thing near and dear to us. We might exercise more, spend time in nature, help others in need or spend quality time with our loved ones and friends. This is not just a time to endure and get through. This is a journey embraced with prayer, meditation and positivity.
If you are not able to practice Lent pick a time that is good for you, set a goal and “let go and let God.” We believe you will be the better because of it.
This weekend a determined group of beings wrapped themselves in love and descended upon Indianapolis, Indiana to visit, “our heart”, mom. In the form of daughter and son, sisters & brothers, grandchildren, first and second generation nieces, nephews and devoted friends we came. Representing this multi-faceted family, devoted church and close knit community we brought kindness, joy and love along with cards, cd’s books and favorite foods.
Coming from northern Illinois, Indiana and Michigan we were blessed with great travel weather during a season that has been less than desirable. Upon arrival it was pure joy to see the miracle before us. It was not just the physical healing but the radiant aura and the overwhelming presence of Spirit in the room. On the outside it was a perfect time. We shared laughter, stories and encouragement. We met needs in every way we could.
Later, we were able to witness an affectionate display of love that was pure and given with total in the moment presence. A nurse on duty, one of God’s earth angels, came in and time just stood still. The room was full but as she caught mom’s eye it seemed no one was present but this angel and mom. Their gazes were locked and as she gathered mom’s face in her hands there was such transference of love between them that you knew it was other worldly. It simply took your breath away. There was no need for fear or jealousy just pure thanksgiving for being privileged to be present in that moment.
We could not know that all of the love shared would be the anecdote the body needed to be cleaned from the inside out. As the evening came to a close mom grew restless. Concerned that there had been too much company too close together we begin to think of what we could do different next time. We left leaving her and dad alone to rest and reflect on the day. It would be a long night. My dad worried that mom was in pain but that was not the case. She had an experience of feeling like she was being cleaned from the inside out. It was sort of like pulling a band aid off slowly. Not something one could do for her or that she could share; it was something she had to endure. Throughout the night my dad and God’s earth angel would be there to bring comfort and encouragement. It was not easy nor without its discomfort and she would not get relief till morning. Morning brought rest and revelation.
This experience will be the formation of the lesson we would like to share today. No matter how well things appear or are going on externally you must be cleaned from the inside out. The day my mom entered the hospital she appeared completely healthy. She was preparing to go on a trip. No one knew she had a deadly time bomb ticking in her body. Surgically things were removed, rebuilt and reconnected. This emotional, mental, physical and spiritual cleaning has not been an easy journey. Neither has it been without pain. Love will always be present. There is light at the end of the tunnel. So be proactive make sure you initiate an inner heart, mind and body cleanse. Understand; the process may not be easy or without pain but persevere. “Weeping may endure for a night but joy comes in the morning.”
It has been a long, cold and blustery winter for those of us living in the Midwest. We have endured record breaking snow, sub-zero temperatures and icy road conditions. Winter is often defined as the cold season between autumn and spring, it is also a time of decay and decline, rest and relaxation and planning and preparation. Everything in nature, is in a mode of either decay and decline or rest and relaxation. It is preparing, for new life and growth for the coming season. One could easily complain and resist the effects of winter. Like nature’s example we suggest you embrace it.
Our nights are longer, so treat yourself, to going to bed earlier giving your body much needed rest. Take a long bath, with scented salts and candlelight. Create a sacred space, to pray and meditate. Nurture your body, with hot cereals and sumptuous soups. Hydrate! Hydrate! Hydrate! Have a pajama day and watch a season of the hit show you missed. Order take-out, gather snacks and beverages and put on a movie or grab a good book. The whole idea is to rest and relax, let go of what no longer serves you and take time for you.
Those who farm or garden will take this time to plan and prepare for their spring plantings. They will determine what worked last year, what needs to be replaced and what needs to be eliminated. You can do this by mapping out your life plans and goals. Ready yourself for spring by determining what seeds of life you want planted. Take the time to prepare the soil of your heart, gather the tools and information you will need. You want your move from winter to spring and from spring to summer primed to grow and produce.
Fall will come and you will want to have received the harvest that you are anticipating now. You will experience a wide range of emotion depending on what it actually took for you to accomplish your goal. Then winter will return reminding you things decay and decline, you need ample rest and relaxation and time to plan and prepare to repeat the cycle again. What you gain each season is up to you.
Every family has someone who represents the “HEART” of the family; for us it is our mother. Ron Walters refers to the HEART as the unseen, non-negotiable center of human life and says, “To the poet, it’s the vault in which dreams are kept. To the athlete, it’s the high-test fuel that propels the body. To the romantic, it’s a gift to be given. To the zealot, it’s what is worn on the sleeve. To the physician, it’s a muscle extraordinaire.” We say, “To us it is the unconditional love of our mother.”
No day is promised; one day you can be up and about, and the next day you can be on deaths door. On January 14th, our mother went from what appeared to be a normal day, to fighting for her life. In less than 24 hours it would seem as if the pulse, the beat, the heart of our family was at risk.
We believe, our mother fought to be here out of her love for us and the lives of those she touched. We believe, she has faith in our ability to excel in life’s challenges. We believe, she knew we would analyze, probe, seek, search, question and then make the best decisions we could make with the information we had at the time. We believe, she knew as a family we would unite and come together with a common goal. We believe, she knew we would rise to the occasion not only for her but for our own growth and development. We believe, she trusted that we had the measure of faith and then some. We believe, she knew this would take us to another level.
Although, it is possible to go through this experience and remain unchanged, that is not our choice. We embraced, the fact that our heart has been altered and irrevocably changed. We have received a dose of love that can only come from the heart and can only be given unconditionally. This has defined us and shaped every subsequent choice and decision we have or will ever make.
God gave us our heart back and in so doing he touched our heart. When one’s heart is touched by God it is impossible to remain the same. So this is our encouragement to you, “Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.” Proverbs 4:23 NJV
Use the SDT Method (Sell, Donate or Trash) for Spring Cleaning.
Do you really need everything you have in your closet or drawers? If you haven’t worn it in months sell or donate. If it has a stain or rip, trash it.
- Texas Toast Bread
- 1/3 cup soft butter
- 1/4 cup parmesan cheese
- 1 tsp. garlic power
- 1 tsp. dried parsley
In a small mixing bowl, combine all ingredients. Take one slice of bread and spread mixture. The number use will vary depending on amount of mixture used. Place bread on cookie sheet. Put in freezer for 15 minutes or until butter is hard. Remove and store in freezer bags.
Preheat oven to 425, place frozen slices on cookie sheet cook for 10 minutes or until golden brown.