catnipoflife

Observe life at its best, listen to life’s songs, embrace life’s bounties, breathe the breath of life and savor life to its fullest!

Simplicity

Simplicity, clarity, singleness: these are the attributes that give our lives power and vividness and joy.” — Richard Halloway

Simplicity: What does simplicity mean to you? Artless. Plain. Dull. Monotonous. Boring. Naivé. WHOA! Let’s change the words… Natural! Unfussy! Effortless! Genuine! Humble! Honest! Does such a difference add complexity to simpleness? Perhaps simple is not so simple after all. Then, it simply may be all in the manner in which it is perceived. That perception varies by which one might view something as being simple.

Let’s examine a word along with simplicity that has not been mentioned. Think about this question: Would you consider simplicity as powerful?

There IS power in simplicity. It allows the flow of creative juices to become less complex leaving out all the fussiness that often muddies the water. It allows us to examine the ideas that are truly important, those that really matter. We then toss aside the rocks within the river bed that break the flow making the way fluent, not choppy, thereby being creative within simplicity!

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Another question to think about: Does beauty exist in simplicity?

There is awesomeness in simplicity as so beautifully put in the photography by Alastair! The photos featured below are the winners in Alastair’s monthly photo contest. All are his photography as his readers vote on which is the best fit for each month. Visit Alastair being sure to return and cast your vote for the month of April @

A Mixed Bag

A poem … A story … A Photo … Something Else

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Time to go! I must stop now in order to keep the message simple.

Find simplicity in your day today and every day!

Simplicity1

What simple things have guided your thoughts today?

 

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Awakenings: Creamy, Tangy & Sweet

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Okay, all you foodies, time to celebrate…not chocolate but probably the next best thing – CHEESECAKE! Not just any cheesecake but cherry cheesecake because today is…

 National Cherry Cheesecake Day

Sharla Shults‘s insight:

…and if you really want to be creative, add a brownie crust! That way you have your cheesecake and chocolate, too! Visit Awakenings where recipes ARE included!

See on awakenings2012.blogspot.com

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Awakenings: Beauty of Earth

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They say a picture is worth a thousand words so what better way to celebrate Earth Day than to appreciate the beauty of Earth! Check out My Beautiful Earth, Earth Day: The History of a Movement and the video hosted by Tom Brokaw as he recounts the beginnings of Earth day.

Step back in time and embrace the 70s @Awakenings…

Sharla Shults‘s insight:

Celebrate Earth Day by inspiring awareness of and appreciation for earth’s environment. Take care of our planet and encourage others to do the same. After all, it is our life source!

See on www.awakenings2012.blogspot.com

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Awakenings: Oldies but Goodies & Then Some

See on Scoop.itAwakenings: America & Beyond

Today in Music History: April 21

Music of today, as well as tomorrow, reaches deep into the heart and soul of all yesterdays. Events of the past beget memories that set the stage for the tomorrows to come. Life void of those memories leaves nothing but emptiness, thereby a world without music. There is always a story behind the music. Harmony in life is wielded through various genres of music from rap to contemporary to classic to rock to gospel and everything in between, before and after.

Embrace the Past…

Sharla Shults‘s insight:

From the 50s to the 90s, enjoy the music memories!

See on awakenings2012.blogspot.com

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The Lily

Happy Easter to all and may your day be filled with blessings beyond words!

Sometimes we ponder and ponder in hopes of eventually mustering the right words to tender an emotion, offer inspiration or purpose newfound knowledge. That is exactly where I found myself today as thoughts were enveloped in the “spiritual essence of Easter.”

Ah-h-h-h! The wonders of the Internet directed my fingers toward exploring its limitless boundaries in search of something overpowering. Webcrawlers fetched page after page delivering data, information, pictures, videos, etc. At the end of the day, a plethora of windows had opened stroking my heartstrings with sights and sounds of wonder and passion. For every time a window opened a new window was discovered that led to another window and . . . Oh, my! Sounds like something venomous caught in a silky web waiting to be a tasty appetizer while life begins to ebb! Doesn’t it?

Needless to say, my efforts were not in vain. The words of my heart had already been written and laid to rest upon the sands of time to be revisited and never forgotten. Now, I share with you, my readers and followers, what thoughts I discovered on the Easter Lily. . .

Thoughts on the Easter Lily

“Rightly the lily is the flower of Easter. It lies buried in the ooze of pond or stream. There is the grave of the dead lily that appeals to nostril or eye. But silently the forces of life are dark and the damp to prepare a glorious resurrection. A shaft of green shoots upward toward the sun. This is followed by a cluster of tiny buds. One day the sun smiles with special warmth upon the dank, black ooze, and there leaps into the light a creature of light and beauty; it is the lily, an angel of the earth, whose look is light.”

—Author Unknown

History of the Easter Lily

How did the lily come to grace the fields of America? The cultivation of lilies did not originate in the United States for the lily is a native of Japan. History reveals the account of a WW I soldier, Luis Houghton, bringing a suitcase full of hybrid lily bulbs to the South coast of Oregon in 1919. Houghton freely distributed bulbs to his friends and neighbors. Because of the events of WW II, the Japanese source of bulbs was abruptly cut off. Therefore, those growing lilies as a hobby noted the value of lily bulbs sky-rocketing and many decided to go into business on their own. At that time, Easter lily bulbs were known as “White Gold,” resulting in cultivators attempting to cash in on the crop. By 1945, there were about 1,200 growers producing bulbs up and down the Pacific coast, from Vancouver, Canada to Long Beach, California.

Of course, this post cannot end without my own personal atonement to. . .


T
he Lily. . .

Sounding of trumpets
Extol the most high
Rallying a crowd
No one should deny

Calls to drill and battle
Resound a time nigh
Echoing surrender
Or a battle cry

No white, just crimson
Adorn the fields
Beds of blood and bone
A battle yields

Within times’ passing
Ghastly signs disappear
Blades of bright green
Awaken thoughts held dear

Slender stalks emerge
Rising from earthy graves
Flaunting scaly bulbs
Pompous as ocean waves

Milky-white trumpets
Surge with praises toward the sky
Spiritual essence of Easter
Extols the most high

©2012 catnipoflife
Sharla Lee Shults

“I am the rose of Sharon, and the lily of the valleys.”
Song of Solomon 2:1

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Awakenings: Titanic – Day 5: Tragedy Strikes

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The unthinkable happened. The unimaginable occurred. At 2:20 am (2 hrs 40 mins after striking the iceberg), the ocean vessel once deemed unsinkable leaves around 1,517 souls in the depths of her final wake. The water in the area in which Titanic sank was lethally cold, a temperature of 28 °F (−2 °C). A human body will perish in fifteen minutes or less in such water, even for people young and physically fit.

Sharla Shults‘s insight:

Thus, the end of the Titanic but not the end of her story.

See on www.awakenings2012.blogspot.com

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Embrace the Silence

Silence

How much better is silence; the coffee cup, the table. How much better to sit by myself like the solitary sea-bird that opens its wings on the stake. Let me sit here for ever with bare things, this coffee cup, this knife, this fork, things in themselves, myself being myself.

— Virginia Woolf, “The Waves”

Within the hustle and bustle of daily life, we cherish the quiet moments. We embrace the silence. We seek places of solitude to ponder the events that govern our very being. We long for the silent moments in life…moments during which time we can turn off, unplug, power down and need not pay attention to social media nor other noise confusing our minds. We long to…

Embrace the Silence

Open a door or window.
Turn an ear toward the sky.
Take a deep breath.
Look a bird right in the eye.

Sit in rare silence.
Hold a loved one’s hand.
Stare at one another.
Simply understand.

Speak not above a whisper.
Sing a silent song of heart.
Think absolutely nothing.
Tell mental noise to depart.

Go for a walk.
Leave the phone at home.
Be watchful, listen.
Enjoy time alone.

Step softly, gently.
Read the faces of nature.
Stand in the pouring rain.
Smile with quiet pleasure.

Pick a few flowers.
Stretch out upon green, green grass.
Stare up at the clouds.
Embrace the silence, first class!

catniplogosm1©2014 catnipoflife
Sharla Lee Shults

What do you do to embrace the silence?

 

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Awakenings: Brothers & Sisters

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Do you have a brother or sister? Are your memories laced with sibling rivalry? Well, today put aside all the times of fussing, fighting, arguing and take time to focus on the extra special bond that is shared between siblings. This bond is even stronger when one has a life-long illness or a disability. Why today? Because…

Today is…

National Sibling Day

Sharla Shults‘s insight:

If you did not know about this celebration until now, it is too late to mail a card or possibly send flowers, but it is never to late to let them know you care. Leave the computer, forget the email. Make it personal. Visit them if they live nearby. Call them, if they live far away.

See on awakenings2012.blogspot.com

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Awakenings: For the Love of Animals

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They breathe. They have a heart. They have a soul. They know hunger. They feel pain. They love and know when they are loved. They do have a voice, just not of words. These are our animals. Some provide us with milk, eggs & meat for food, others offer wool & furs for warmth, many give us entertainment. All provide moments of joy. Those we are closest to become our pets…we pamper and adore. But, all are not so lucky…

Sharla Shults‘s insight:

Within our society live humans who indulge, not in actions of love, but obtain pleasure in inflicting needless cruelty. Animals are starved and beaten with no remorse. Some survive remaining maimed for life. Too many die. Join the fight to end animal cruelty!

See on www.awakenings2012.blogspot.com

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Something to Smile About

SmileDo you always NEED something to smile about or does a smile come naturally, just happen without a great deal of thought or reason behind it? Perhaps you wake up in the morning and smile even before your feet hit the floor. Ever ask yourself “Why?”

When someone smiles at you, how does it make you feel? Flirtatious? Warm? Do you wonder why that person is smiling? All kinds of thoughts can possibly fleet through your mind often depending on your mood at the time. If a smile is taken for the right intent, it can surely make a cloudy day full of sunshine.

The beauty of a smile: blazes, amazes, teases, pleases, warms, never harms, satisfies, gratifies, an ever burning flame of love, hope, desire! That’s something to smile about!

 

Simple MomentsIgniteLife’sEmotions

[Someone may have a camera!]

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