The rules for accepting this award are to share a few things about yourself, and then to pass the award along to ten other blogs. So if your day has been less than stellar, sit back, relax, and let some sunshine into your life!
|In the mountains of Nicaragua|
Just over a year ago I traveled with my two children to Nicaragua. I learned HUGE lessons from this trip-some immediate, some upon reflection. So when I was asked to be a guest writer about ’embracing abundance’ on G.G. Vandagriff’s blog, this experience came to mind. Here’s a sample:
” I get really tired of excuses. In fact, in my classroom when my 8th and 9th graders try to excuse their behavior, lack of homework, or unpreparedness I tell them kindly yet firmly, “Excuses are useless.” Initially a quizzical look forms on their face, and then they start to stammer…which is exactly when I interject my reasoning. Everyone has issues. Everyone is busy. Everyone can blame someone, something, or some “whatever” for anything. But what’s the point? It’s not about the excuse. It’s about being responsible, respectful, honest and courageous enough to create the kind of success we want in life. Some get the idea more quickly than others. I just hope that before they end their year with me, they’ve at least thought about it…”
To read more, please click over to G.G’s blog-you’ll not only get to read the rest of my Nicaraguan life lesson, but you’ll find a blog and website full of intriguing writing. G.G.’s bio says, “My new book “The Only Way to Paradise” is the result of intense immersion in the Florentine and Tuscan culture, and most of it was written there. Of course, the art and landscape are spectacular, but what makes my heart sing are the people. I think that they are born with a genetic tendency to agape (unconditional love).”
So go on, check it out! Why not?
|Paul Mason Photography|
Sometimes as I’m moving around in my day, an image gets stuck in my head that I can’t shake. Sometimes it conjures up a memory, a feeling, or provides an impulse to do something. Often, though, I just see something that I want to capture in my mind for no particular reason-it just speaks to me. I’d like to offer these images up for ‘thought contributions’-as a way to generate a community of ideas together.
Today’s photo comes straight from my uncle Paul’s portfolio. I couldn’t have imagined anything better for my theme this week, as I have come to the realization that I am not a digital native.
While I consider myself ‘tech-savvy’, I have been humbled this week with the start of an online course on global education and the death of Steve Jobs. Although a few years older than I, Mr. Jobs was definitely a digital native. So it can’t all be about age…maybe there are levels of assimilation? This course I’m taking has shown me that I haven’t a clue how to attack digital text, do online mind mapping, or participate on online discussions. I have quickly realized that I am a digital immigrant, and will have to learn a new language and customs to operate in this society…and I REALLY miss my old typewriter.
Are you a digital immigrant, too? Can we ever break through the technology culture barrier?
Once upon a time there was a young girl growing up in an old, small town. She had long, straight chocolate colored hair and deep brown eyes. Her oval face held a blank expression most times, as she was the type to watch and listen more than express what she was thinking or feeling.
One autumn day this young girl arrived at school. She loved her school-it was clean, quiet, and full of places to play. She loved her teachers, and was a quiet and obedient student. Unlike most kids her age, what she enjoyed most about school was reading. She was happiest when she was working alone in her books, learning about new people and places and things. Also unlike most kids her age, what she disliked most about school was PE. It wasn’t that she disliked exercise-actually, she loved playing softball, hopscotch and four square. For her, PE was terrifying for one reason: DODGE BALL.
In her little old town dodge ball was the favored sport for PE class. Students begged and pleaded each day to play dodge ball during their treasured exercise time. And as convincing as the students were, the teacher almost always agreed. Dodge ball it would be.
From beginning to end, dodge ball was excruciating. The two manly boys who were always captains lined the other children up to select teams. First chosen were always the other ‘sports boys’. Next came the ‘tom boys’, and then the cute, outgoing girls. Last was always the oval faced, brown eyed girl.
After that exercise in taxonomy, the game began. Circling around their prey, the ‘sports boys’ would throw the ball at each other, eager to show off their quick reflexes and agility. The prey would scurry from one side to the next, not wanting to be hit yet not quite wanting to back down, either. Then the ‘tom boys’ jumped in, dodging with grace and flexibility. The cute, outgoing girls giggled, admiring the prowess of the young, manly hunters.
The young girl trembled, knowing it was just a matter of time before she became the victim. Eyes wide, she tried to avoid the flaming red sphere, but every time SPLAT! she took it in the stomach. On the back. At the ankles. Tears welled up in her big, dirt colored eyes.
Not sure which was more painful, the sting of the ball or the burn of the humiliation, she attempted to survive. The predators became more confident. The giggling girls pumped their testosterone. SLAP! TWANG! Over and over the ball would smash the young girl down, the laughter of her classmates growing louder and louder and LOUDER. Paralyzed with pain and fear and humiliation she froze, absorbing one sting after another after another.
And in that moment, relived thirty-five years over and over, she realized something. The young chocolate haired, dirt eyed oval faced girl learned that she owed her classmates a thank you. For what she realized is that those ‘sports boys’ and ‘tom boys’ and laughing spectators had taught her a very important lesson: dodge ball is the way the world works.
And in that moment, decades later, she realized that like dodge ball, it’s easy to run away from what’s coming at you. She realized that it’s painless to punch someone in the gut, slap them on the back, ding them at the ankles and go back for more. Because of dodge ball, she learned that it’s hard to stand strong, take the hit, stay upright, and confront each obstacle hurled by others. She understood that life really is about survival of the fittest. And because of dodge ball, she survived and lived happily ever after.