A Place to Share Smiles!
Starting with the lesson from Grandma and building ....
an ether space of joy.
Lesson's from Grandma
Congrats Katie & Wren!
On the cover even!!!
Some of us remember many, many years ago Katie's intention was to FLY! She wanted to be a pilot.
She was the only person who ever pulled all birds in a reading!!!
We set intentions, sent her lots of love with each testing ...
and she did it! She Soars!
Now as a Mother she soars with her children, in beauty and Grace.
Wren has grown into a lovely woman. It seems only a moment ago she was a toddler!
When Katie shared this article .... well I wanted to share it too ... If you click the picture it will open up the article :)
May it bless you!
"My smile of the week is this: I gifted a friend, $20 as a random act of appreciation and that day, when I heard that she paid $20 for a woman's bill in the grocery store. That same day, my own mother gave my daughter and son and I each $20 for our travel day back home and on our way to the airport, a man approached my daughter in a Trader Joe's parking lot for some spare change and she gave him the $20. We saw him walking down the street looking so very happy. It seems like a good lesson of being open with how to share one's abundance and how it comes and go's when you are generous with others, it blesses you right back. For us, it was all in the same day. A good lesson for my children to witness and we all talked about how happiness is in being generous and giving and receiving freely.
My second smile of the day was when I went to our public library in Alaska to vote and there were all the librarians favorite books of the month. After voting, I saw the title, "Forgiveness in an Unforgiving World" by Meagan Feldman.
It was so cool to see one of the most talented writer's work her in Alaska on a topic that is so very important in our world...I read the book 4 years ago and think that I'll read it again this winter...She is an amazing journalist who's journey to write this book was so brave and courageous and insightful..with such purpose of forgiveness and compassion. I wish her continual success!" -KT Writer
Our Green Knight on his Walk About
Asia’s Maiden Voyage - A Childhood Dream Fulfilled; Confirmation of Life’s Pathway & Parking Problems in Paradise! ................ Dreams are funny things - when left to their own devices, they stand a reasonable chance of becoming a reality, one day. For best results, as is most often the case, it’s best to set it and forget it! What most do not know is that I originally hatched the thought to buy a proper motorcycle shortly after learning to drive in and around the streets of Da Nang this past spring. I took quickly to the notion that in addition to being a practical form of transportation for this part of the world, motorbikes are just plain fun to drive. Although scooters are extremely practical for around town use, they are less than ideal when venturing out on long distance journeys both from a comfort perspective as well as safety - full sized motorbikes offer better suspension, longer term comfort, superior acceleration and vastly improved braking. What I quickly discovered is that unlike the West, property ownership of virtually anything is a highly restricted process unless you are a native of the country or have special papers that grant you the legal ability to buy. And while it’s very common for travelers to pick up secondhand scooters, I’m not fond of owning anything mechanical with suspect care history. Let’s just say that oil changes with a new filter are less common in developing nations and the probability of breaking down due to lackluster maintenance schedules is high. The solution seemed simple: buy new. However, in practical terms, that meant that in order to buy a new bike you are required by law to register it under a Vietnamese National’s name - ownership of most things in Vietnam for foreigners is damn close to impossible. In spite of the fact that it wouldn't be an overnight process, I did have the good fortune to be able to move forward. A dear friend was gracious enough to help sponsor registration; so, I agreed to move forward with the purchase of a new Honda adventure motorcycle and submitted a deposit with an importer based out of Saigon. However, that is when a number of stark realities of doing business in Vietnam began to came to light. What was initially intended to be an up to 30-day registration process in Vietnam quickly grew to more than 3 months of waiting for “papers" to arrive - this would eventually serve at the catalyst for a major decision in the form of an impending crossroad. It was clearly time to choose between persisting on this pathway with constant headwinds, or consider a different direction. Fortunately, my recon mission in August to Bali was a success and confirmed that it was time to consider a more suitable option. I was able to apply for and was quickly issued a 2-year, multiple-entry, Indonesian Visa; which also provided the distinct benefit of owning a bike or car registered in my own name. Having papers in my name will prove handy when traveling by ferry to adjacent islands or border crossing with a motorbike into other countries. In retrospect, virtually everything in Bali has been very smooth sailing. Upon reflection of having spent the past 6 months gaining competence and confidence driving a variety of manual and automatic scooters in two distinctly different Southeast Asian countries, it was time to upgrade. Delivery day finally arrived and the dream I envisioned so many moons ago as a 16 year-old was now a reality! With keys in hand it was now time to put my plans in full-motion including dealing with certain realities on the ground. In many ways, Balinese traffic is unfortunately notorious for being beyond gridlocked - if paradise has an Achille's heel, Bali’s traffic jams are it. Although there seems to be more in the way of westernized traffic control in Bali, with stop lights and occasional traffic cops, streets are invariably impacted by narrow traffic ways to the point that that motorbikes and even occasional cars will drive on the sidewalks to get past congested intersections. It’s a bizarre solution to an impossibly inadequate roadway infrastructure that seems to be broadly accepted as a traffic norm. And YES, I’m now an officially certified Balinese Sidewalk driver - when in Rome! And while I have thoroughly enjoyed getting to explore Bali by motorbike, it’s not without its own cautionary tale - keeping in mind my Mom’s pearls of wisdom that “motorcycles are dangerous” has never left my lexicon. It has provided context for learning to drive responsibly as an adult with the understanding that we all have limits forged from experience. So, I'm exerting best efforts to drive respectfully within Balinese neighborhoods which I now frequently traverse. One thing that’s uniquely Balinese is their very deep conviction to the Hindu faith. It is evident in every aspect of their culture and is reflected by their traditional dress and adherence to the golden rule - which is refreshingly ubiquitous. There are countless temples punctuating every community as well as family temples centrally located within every Balinese family compound. Every home and business performs daily rituals and leave offerings at entrances to homes and businesses to encourage good fortune. What has become evident is that the Balinese people seem to have a ceremony in one form or another for virtually everything you may encounter in life. Multi-day ceremonies for weddings and funerals that bring entire communities together in giant precessions are not uncommon and performing a blessing ritual for new ownership is no exception. So, I was honored when Cito, the owner of the Balinese Homestay I’ve been living in, offered for his mom to perform a blessing ceremony for Asia to help promote balance and safe journeys. To say that driving here is anything less than crazy is an understatement; so, I responded "I'll take all of the luck and blessings being offered!" Getting to truly experience the nooks and crannies within Bali’s backroads by motorbike continues to be a blessing. Every day is an adventure in its own right. The ancient narrow streets that can oftentimes barely fit two cars are compounded by a culture that will literally park anywhere they see fit and no regard is paid to how it impacts others using the roads. This seems to be a broadly cultural thing as virtually every village has little dogs sleeping in the middle of the road without a care in the world as motorbikes and occasional cars swerve around them. Interestingly enough, I’ve never witnessed one instance of road rage or even an accident for that matter. Drivers here tend to be cool as a cucumber and, in fact, the opposite is apparent. People will go out of their way to help clear a path for cars trying to get by, by gently relocating randomly parked motorbikes on the side or sometimes in the middle of the road. There is never any visible frustration. Just good samaritans doing their part to help others get along their way demonstrating that random acts of kindness here are the norm, not the exception. I suspect the even temperament is a further byproduct of the Hindu culture and deep respect for the powers of Karma. Needless to say, Balinese driving has it’s own less desirable traits where everyone is constantly attempting to overtake the slowpoke in front in what can only be described as a mass participation in “Balinese Bike Chicken” and driving into oncoming traffic to gain one or two spots ahead is commonplace. Granted, cars do drive cautiously due to the fact that 95% of Balinese drive motorbikes. It’s a bikers culture that dictates road rules for the most part. When you combine the biking culture with roadways that are more akin to a highly contoured golfcart path; which meander up and down steep gullies along the side of active volcanoes, it makes for a motorcycle driving experience that is sure to make you giggle at times for its genuinely “roller-costeresque” nature. What I’ve concluded is that although it’s entertaining as hell and a downright thrill to drive during the day, it’s a constant reminder that the likelihood of death is an exponential threat at night. Most streets don’t have lights, painted lanes, guard rails or any other defining factors that it’s a road aside from being paved with asphalt and randomly accentuated with giant pot holes. These dangers, of course, can be remedied with good lights that offer much better lighting than what came stock from Honda. Fortunately, an advanced lighting system is on order and I’ve restricted myself to only driving during daylight hours until the new system is safely installed. This moral of the story, or rather the underlying theme, is a general observation over the course of my life - when things are meant to be, doors tend to swing open rapidly with seemingly little effort. Whereas, when life is throwing out roadblocks and doors seem closed, it’s really the universe encouraging you to pump the brakes and if you’re smart about it, to take a moment and consider if this is the path that’s intended or should you consider a different road.
Jimmy has been a long time friend and circle.
His Walk About has led him on a magical journey ... revealing his gift with capturing light!
His insights on his journey ... bring sweet blessings with a smile :)
Check out some of his images!
Best Bike is a Blessed Bike!
Debi's Poem of Peace
Brother Tusk's Blessings
We are sharing Carry On, which was recorded on a magical Easter Sunday,
.....a dream of Brother Tusks.
We never got to polish and finish, as he left this realm that summer.
This is to honor him and keep my promise to keep singing.
Also attached is a pdf of photos and narrative.
Be Blessed & Blessed Be,
Click image for the PDF
'In Honor of Brother Tusk'