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Welcome to Mirth and Motivation!

Before you leave a comment, STOP, consider this: Our comments are part of our digital footprint on the internet. They tell the world how we think and respond to information. I know YOU took time out of your busy schedule and landed here. I’m rooting for you to say something inspiring that will help others who read my posts. THANK YOU! ❤

Hello world!

29/11/2008

Welcome to Mirth and Motivation! This is a Lifestyle/Motivational blog offering an eclectic mix of mirthful and motivational pieces: Life Tips / Advice, Affirmations/Wellness, Women’s Lives, Food, Travel, Interviews, Inspirational posts, Reviews, Peace, AND Social Media ruminations on people, places, and events that shape our lives. I invite you to stay awhile, read some posts, and share your thoughts with this growing online blog community.

One of the fundamental rules of blogging is to make connections with others by adding value through our message/content, comments, and social interactions. I hope you’ll share your comments and expertise with me. If you’d like to write a Guest post, offer a sponsorship or PR opportunity, send me a message with your inquiry by email at: contact(@)mirthandmotivation(.)com or contact(@)positivekismet(.)com Thank you!

Something I know for sure is that we all want to be heard, appreciated and respected; I know that sincere, positive, and empowering messages are far more appealing than incendiary angling for blog attention. If your blogosphere surfing brings you here, relax, kick back, and share a positive tidbit on your worldview.

So, How should we handle the global economic shift? How do we stay mirthful and motivated?
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Motivation Mondays: STAY STEADFAST

18/09/2017

“With a firm and steadfast mind one should hold under all conditions, that everywhere the earth is below and the sky above, and to the energetic man, every region is his fatherland.” Tycho Brahe

Motivation Mondays: STAY STEADFAST

Motivation Mondays: STAY STEADFAST

Motivation Mondays: STAY STEADFAST

Motivation Mondays: STAY STEADFAST

Doubts and mistrust are the mere panic of timid imagination, which the steadfast heart will conquer, and the large mind will transcend. Helen Keller
I spent years studying the teachings of Patanjali, and he reminded us several thousand years ago that when we are steadfast – which means that we never slip in our abstention of thoughts of harm directed toward others – then all living creatures cease to feel enmity in our presence. Wayne Dyer

As we move from Summer to Fall, it is time to reflect on all the resolutions we made at the beginning of the year and see what we held unto with steadfast love and what we left alone or abandoned. The beginning of a new year is a time of great hope, and flurries of activity, as we prepare to face our demons of old, conquer them, and build steadfast goals and plans that will see us through the year.  This is the fourth and last quarter of the year and it’s time to step back, assess where we have been, and decide how we’d like to end the year. As we all know, by mid year, most of us get side-tracked as pressing demands fill the gaps and imagined victories over XYZ get replaced by the mundane and more demanding. Sometimes, our desire for steadfastness gets turned on its head and becomes a very stubborn steadfastness that can lead us to peril. Yet, there are areas of our lives that stay constant and these areas are reminders of what matter most to us. Even when other plans go awry, there are values and commitments we just don’t abandon. Looking back at those areas can be both motivating and enlightening because they show us where our commitments lie and where, with greater effort, we could really shine. What is still on your list of things to do or things you would not cross your line for?

This year, I made a commitment to focus on making constructive changes in my life; top of the list was getting back in shape after a two year stint with troubling health issues, getting outdoors more, and managing the worrywart in me. I also made a commitment to read more, spend time with loved ones and move negativity out of my space and life. Of course,  it takes great effort to maintain our plans and there are always moments that trip us up. But, one thing I know for sure is that when we make a commitment to honor our self, our  higher self, the universe rallies to support us.  I have had my share of unexplained miracles this year and they have shown up as reminders that I am on the right path for me.  While there are still daily challenges to face and action plans to execute, I stay resolute in the belief that my steadfast commitment to change will bear positive fruit. Even with that attitude in mind, we must take action, and there is still time to create a new list of five very important resolutions to help us stay steadfast and motivated in our lives. I’ll add them here and share more in the following paragraphs. What about you? What do you stay steadfast for every year?
1. Delete Hate
2. Practice Tolerance
3. Demand Wisdom
4. Remember Compassion/Empathy
5. Replace Fear with Love.

“Bright star, would I were stedfast as thou art” By John Keats
Bright star, would I were stedfast as thou art—
Not in lone splendour hung aloft the night
And watching, with eternal lids apart,
Like nature’s patient, sleepless Eremite,
The moving waters at their priestlike task
Of pure ablution round earth’s human shores,
Or gazing on the new soft-fallen mask
Of snow upon the mountains and the moors—
No—yet still stedfast, still unchangeable,
Pillow’d upon my fair love’s ripening breast,
To feel for ever its soft fall and swell,
Awake for ever in a sweet unrest,
Still, still to hear her tender-taken breath,
And so live ever—or else swoon to death. via poetryfoundation

 

 

The details for Motivation Mondays are below. Join in! The themes for July/August 2017 are:

AUGUST

08/06 –  01 National Girlfriend Day
08/13 –  06 Friendship Day, 12 International Youth Day
08/20 –  19 World Humanitarian Day
08/27 –  26 National Dog Day

SEPTEMBER 

09/04 – Labor Day,
09/10 – TBA
09/17 – TBA
07/24 – TBA
09/30 – Yom Kippur

 

Are You Looking for Ways to Stay Creative in 2017?

post-a-week-2017-md
– Join the Daily Post Post-a-day or Post-a-week Challenge.

BHWritingLab_052016_post_PROMPT1A

— Join the BlogHer Writing Lab

 

MORE BELOW! Read more…

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Reflections: A Penchant for the Eclectic

13/09/2017

“I had a penchant myself for doing several things at once. I wanted to draw, write, speak.” Patti Smith

Reflections: A Penchant for the Eclectic & Positive - In Life and Art...

Reflections: A Penchant for the Eclectic & Positive – In Life and Art…

Move beyond security; develop a penchant for the unknown; learn; grow; expand. SayQuotable
I have a penchant for fresh notebooks and mechanical pencils. It seems every time I go to the store, I buy a new notebook. I have dozens of them just sitting around. Richard Paul Evans
I read too many romance novels during my formative years. I have a penchant for romantic comedies. I understand why ‘Romeo and Juliet’ came to such a pass. Roxane Gay

A Penchant for the Eclectic & Positive Aspects of Life: As far back as I can remember, I was a deeply distracted and imaginative child. I flitted from one creative endeavor to another in a matter of minutes or days, depending on my mood and how long a particular thing held my interest. I fell in love with an eclectic selection of interests and books, and read everything and anything in my dad’s Study; including my mother’s Cookbooks on the shelves in the kitchen, and the daily newspapers and magazines that came regularly to our doorstep.

Essentially, some might say I was a budding polymath. Ha! I might have become fully so but, if you went to school in the British system, you knew that the path was pretty rigid with a strict curriculum that was enforced to the last letter.  There was little room for excessive, youthful exuberance … then again, it was also a matter of timing and teacher. Mind you, I probably didn’t understand half the things I read as a child but, it kept my active mind very busy and I enjoyed every minute of being carried away, from time to time, into a new and distant realm; albeit an unfamiliar one. One day, I wanted to be a ballerina, the next a banker, doctor, model, rock singer and everything in between. I did get a chance to do some of those things; for instance, my poor mother enrolled my sister and me in Ballet class until the very nasty dance teacher informed her we were going to be too tall to become ballet dancers. I was very offended and glared at her in anger until my mom noticed and dragged me out of the class and forever turned her back on that studio.

My penchant for the eclectic was briefly interrupted by the dance teacher. The teacher’s suggestion that we find more suitable activities for growing girls offended me not just because she said it to my mother, within hearing distance, but also because she challenged a belief I held even as a child, that we can try almost anything, explore the world and become better informed about it all. The world was an open door through which we could investigate all that she had to offer so, that early knock from a dance teacher was not welcome. Nevertheless, it opened doors to other forms of dance, martial arts, swimming, yoga, music, sports, you name it, all of which I embraced with the same degree of passion I embraced everything else that caught my interest … that is, at least for some of my interests, until something new, different and complex came along.

 

“When I was really young, I wanted to grow up and be the sun. Which shows an early penchant for ambition or narcissism or grandiosity or delusion – all of which are bellwethers for becoming a writer.” Gayle Forman

Reflections: A Penchant for the Eclectic & Positive - In Life and Art...

Reflections: A Penchant for the Eclectic & Positive – In Life and Art…


YouTube Video: Welcome Alexis Olympia Ohanian Jr. via accompanying video shared by her mother, Serena Williams.

There is no great genius without a touch of madness. Seneca
Disappointment has quite a penchant for taking one by a surprise. Pawan Mishra
Americans have a penchant for the future and tend to disregard the past. Alan Dundes
The beauty of the world has two edges, one of laughter, and one of anguish, cutting the heart asunder . Virginia Woolf
I’ve always had a penchant for dialects. I remember getting detention and being told, ‘Have a think about where doing these funny voices might get you someday. Nolan North

Reflections: A Penchant for the Eclectic & Positive: The greatest gift a parent can give a child, after loving them, is a pair of wings to fly and explore the world.  As I read the Vanity Fair article and watched the video of Serena, her hubby and her baby above, I imagined what a varied and fun life she is going to have… I can bet on it. My parents gave me plenty of inspiration and, even though, they were neither perfect nor had all the answers, they opened my eyes to a world beyond my own. We had friends from around the globe.  They came to our home for dinner parties and we went to their homes too. Children observe these behaviors in their parents so, it is not enough to pay lip-service to having an open mind about other cultures, you must live it too.

I had a penchant for asking lots of questions of strangers and family friends. In another life, I must have been a reporter of sorts… I remember wondering and asking why some people never ventured off their street. They lived small insular lives that began and ended on their doorsteps. Even though some were friends with my parents, they, and by default their kids, never expressed one iota of interest in seeing the world. The kids would say “Why venture afar when we can get ice cream from Joe on the truck. If we move or travel, we will miss his Sunday bell ringing.”  Thinking about that idea now strikes me as funny but, to a child, it made perfect sense. It was the familiar; it was home, and it was safe. I, on the other hand, loved that my family traveled and moved around and I looked at each new place as an opportunity to reinvent myself. But, it was a double edged sword… The constant distraction and flitting interests meant that I got bored easily as a child and would get into trouble for stupid pranks or other childhood silliness.  There was also the constant disruption of life and the need to make new friends and abandon some old ones. Like Nolan North above, I had my share of detention too. Today, there is a name for all of that but,  let me not digress.

WINTER BLUES by Barry Tebb via poetrysoup.com
For Penny Abraham
I wish I had Auden’s penchant
For going about in carpet slippers
Or the late HRH Margaret’s panache-
A chauffered Rolls with six outriders-
This late December day with its sparkle of sun on frost
I’d so much rather be in Haworth’s cobbled street
With cascades of carols in torchlit procession
Or still better with a passionate friend to make love to
By Penistone Crags and then sit in post-coital bliss
In the tea-room, reading Claudel in whispers,
And not as I was, heading for Camden’s
December Trust Board Meeting, of which I’m not a member
But a regular attender, watching the watchers
At a comfortable distance, hoping to hear democracy’s arrthymia.

 

“Our only solace as writers is in the work itself, and perhaps also in a penchant for blissful ignorance that allows us to gamble, to risk, to keep going where others would tote up the odds and stop.” Gayle Lynds

Reflections: A Penchant for the Eclectic & Positive - In Life and Art...

Reflections: A Penchant for the Eclectic & Positive – In Life and Art…

I have a penchant for playing God’s clowns. Actually, I played Nijinsky once, and he used to call himself God’s clown. Stephen Lang
Maybe my penchant for hippie-deluxe eccentricity came from an escapist dream of a different world. It was tough being a working mom in the 1970s. Suzy Menkes
Qualities you need to get through medical school and residency: Discipline. Patience. Perseverance. A willingness to forgo sleep. A penchant for sadomasochism. Ability to weather crises of faith and self-confidence. Accept exhaustion as fact of life. Addiction to caffeine a definite plus. Unfailing optimism that the end is in sight. Khaled Hosseini

Reflections: A Penchant for the Eclectic & Positive: Were you a happy, sad, complex or angry child? Even though, on the surface, I didn’t appear to be a happy child, my sister Joy held that record and was aptly named, I had a very happy interior life. My inner world was populated with great stories, colorful art and people, and a rich appreciation for the beauty of the universe and nature. I wrote poems and short stories as a kid and, whenever I got into trouble, I would reach for a funny story to ease the tension. My teachers were all convinced that I would be a comedian and writer some day. Oddly enough, my humor is not something that can be scripted.  It kinda comes in its own way; sadly, harnessing it is not a snap. With the same enthusiasm I picked up things, I unceremoniously dropped them and that was a challenge. The few things that stayed constant were my love for nature, travel, yoga, good food, and a great story.

My mother was an avid gardener and a gourmet cook so I was exposed to beautiful, exotic flowers and fine foods from an early age. My mother was also a great storyteller and when she wasn’t busy pursuing one of her many eclectic dreams, notice the genetic marker there, she would regal us with funny stories and new and interesting dishes. We also asked her lots of questions about life and requested dishes that we imagined or read about in our story books. Plum pudding was one and, for the life of me, I have no idea why that stuck in my head for years. Rhubarb Crumble and Spinach saute came to mind too and my mom had a favorite dish that she named Everything Fried Rice; it had a lot of wonderful herbs and spices added including raisins, ginger and a variety of dried fruits. Mom wasn’t keen on sweets, but we had a lot of other dishes that filled the gap with savory and sweet treats added to the mix. I will feature more of her recipes in future posts.

 

More Below! Read more…

Motivation Mondays: Patriot Day – Remembering 9/11

11/09/2017

“We will remember every rescuer who died in honor… We will remember every family that lives in grief… We will remember…” President George W. Bush

Motivation Mondays: Patriot Day - Remembering 9/11

Motivation Mondays: Patriot Day – Remembering 9/11

America will never forget the September tragedy that shook our Nation’s core 13 years ago. On a day that began like so many others, a clear blue sky was pierced by billowing black smoke as a wave of grief crashed over us. But in one of our darkest moments, we summoned strength and courage, and out of horrible devastation emerged the best of our humanity. On this solemn anniversary, we pause in remembrance, in reflection, and once again in unity. Presidential Proclamation

Today is Patriot Day – National Day of Service and Remembrance in honor of those we lost on September 11, 2001. 9/11 will forever be etched on our collective memories and psyche. It was a day of momentous horror and tragedy. So many lives lost at the hands of evildoers. It is remarkable to look back and remember how it seemed, on that day, that the world was coming to an end. We have prevailed; our prayers and goodwill will continue to uplift all the families of those who perished in the carnage, and uplift all who work to maintain peace in our world. As we honor the memory of those who lost their lives on this day, let us also hold up the folks who just went through the horrors of Hurricane Irma and Harvey. We need to remember that when one life is lost in a tragedy, the reverberations affect us all.  We remember sad events and share the stories so others won’t forget; we speak up so all of us will remember to say a prayer and lift up the spirits of the 2,996 people killed in the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 and those who lost their lives as well as the survivors of the hurricanes and floods around the world.

 What memories of 9. 11. come to mind? Where were you on 9.11?  Sharing our sympathy and supporting those who lost loved ones was imperative during that period.  Regardless of where we were that memorable day, we all remember the pain, fear and shock in the aftermath of the planes that went down and the lives that were lost. The answers are as varied as there are people, and we all have powerful visual memories of that sad and tragic day; a day that is forever seared in our memories.  Many stood outside buildings or watched from TV screens. It was surreal. We watched in horror for what seemed like hours, and then we were so shocked we could not and did not speak. I was at a client’s home and, when I left, I went home in a state of utter shock. We all rallied to mourn the dead and attended memorial services… We coped by holding each other up and by remembering those we lost. Today, the 9/11 Memorial & Museum continues to provide succor to all who visit and spend some time learning about the events of that fateful day. Visit it, if you ever come to NYC.
READ: Remembering 9/11: NASA Marks 16th Anniversary with Online Tribute

 

“If we learn nothing else from this tragedy, we learn that life is short and there is no time for hate.”  Sandy Dahl, wife of Flight 93 pilot Jason Dahl

Motivation Mondays: Patriot Day - Remembering 9/11

Motivation Mondays: Patriot Day – Remembering 9/11

The living owe it to those who no longer can speak to tell their story for them. Czesław Miłosz
There are stars whose light only reaches the earth long after they have fallen apart. There are people whose remembrance gives light in this world, long after they have passed away. This light shines in our darkest nights on the road we must follow. The Talmud

What motivates our actions? Because of hate, our lives were forever changed by acts of terrorism that killed thousands and left pain and great suffering for the families and friends of the deceased. When we are motivated by evil, we act accordingly. When we are motivated by good, we remember our humanity. The first responders, firemen, police, EMT and many others, came to help at ground zero and inhaled toxic fumes that gave many cancer and created much pain for some of those dedicated souls who came to help. Years later, some of us still have nightmares, reliving the horrific image of the twins towers collapsing. On 9/11, we all lost some part of our lives. The poem below by Billy Collins is poignant … and a must read.

What do you remember?  I remember that for months after 9/11, I avoided the city. I couldn’t bring myself to go there as it was too raw and painful and the smell of death hung in the air for many, many months. It  has taken some time to rebuild and reconnect with the city as a safe haven for all. Today, we pause to reflect, mourn the many lost, and vow to never forget… The new North and South Memorial Pools, the 9/11 Memorial & Museum, the Tribute in Light and more, offer us some respite and a place to renew our hope and commitment to peace. My hope is that all will find peace and comfort on this day and that we will all stand up against acts of violence and hatred.  Sending healing wishes  to all the families that lost a loved one on 9.11.

The Names – Poem by Billy Collins via Poem-Hunter

Yesterday, I lay awake in the palm of the night.
A soft rain stole in, unhelped by any breeze,
And when I saw the silver glaze on the windows,
I started with A, with Ackerman, as it happened,
Then Baxter and Calabro,
Davis and Eberling, names falling into place
As droplets fell through the dark.

Names printed on the ceiling of the night.
Names slipping around a watery bend.
Twenty-six willows on the banks of a stream.
In the morning, I walked out barefoot
Among thousands of flowers
Heavy with dew like the eyes of tears,

And each had a name —
Fiori inscribed on a yellow petal
Then Gonzalez and Han, Ishikawa and Jenkins.
Names written in the air
And stitched into the cloth of the day.
A name under a photograph taped to a mailbox.

Monogram on a torn shirt,
I see you spelled out on storefront windows
And on the bright unfurled awnings of this city.
I say the syllables as I turn a corner —
Kelly and Lee,
Medina, Nardella, and O’Connor.

When I peer into the woods,
I see a thick tangle where letters are hidden
As in a puzzle concocted for children.
Parker and Quigley in the twigs of an ash,
Rizzo, Schubert, Torres, and Upton,
Secrets in the boughs of an ancient maple.

Names written in the pale sky.
Names rising in the updraft amid buildings.
Names silent in stone
Or cried out behind a door.
Names blown over the earth and out to sea.

In the evening — weakening light, the last swallows.
A boy on a lake lifts his oars.
A woman by a window puts a match to a candle,
And the names are outlined on the rose clouds —
Vanacore and Wallace,
(let X stand, if it can, for the ones unfound)
Then Young and Ziminsky, the final jolt of Z.

Names etched on the head of a pin.
One name spanning a bridge, another undergoing a tunnel.
A blue name needled into the skin.
Names of citizens, workers, mothers and fathers,
The bright-eyed daughter, the quick son.

Alphabet of names in a green field.
Names in the small tracks of birds.
Names lifted from a hat
Or balanced on the tip of the tongue.
Names wheeled into the dim warehouse of memory.
So many names, there is barely room on the walls of the heart.
*This poem is dedicated to the victims of September 11 and to their survivors. Billy Collins

 

The details for Motivation Mondays are below. Join in! The themes for July/August 2017 are:

AUGUST

08/06 –  01 National Girlfriend Day
08/13 –  06 Friendship Day, 12 International Youth Day
08/20 –  19 World Humanitarian Day
08/27 –  26 National Dog Day

SEPTEMBER 

09/04 – Labor Day,
09/10 – TBA
09/17 – TBA
07/24 – TBA
09/30 – Yom Kippur

 

Are You Looking for Ways to Stay Creative in 2017?

post-a-week-2017-md
– Join the Daily Post Post-a-day or Post-a-week Challenge.

BHWritingLab_052016_post_PROMPT1A

— Join the BlogHer Writing Lab

 

More Below! Read more…

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