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!

BOO!

Trick or Treat!

cateyes

flaminghappyhalloween

Visit catnip’s sister site, Awakenings, for MORE hauntings…

jack-o-lanterns

brief video history of Halloween,

the craziest selfie ever,

comic horror movie classic,

a bit of nostalgia and

scary vintage Halloween costumes!

pumpkinrow

bats

Trick or Treat!

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Both Sides of Life: City vs. Country

Crédits photo : Johnia! (Flickr)

Crédits photo : Johnia! (Flickr)

Are you a city slicker born and reared in the country? A country boy or girl living it up in the city? Country born, country stayed or city born, city to this day? Much is to be learned from both sides of life. The sleepy country side isn’t for everyone nor is the flipside, hectic city life. One may seem pale in comparison to the other so venture forth seeking the brightness of each. If you live in the country, take time to visit the city. If you live in the city, get out into the country for rural goodness.

Life in the City

Welcome to the city!
May I show you around?

A concrete jungle
It has long been called
A mighty fortress
Towering, stone-walled

Glaring, surely blaring
Sights amid sounds
All around the city
Hold you spellbound

Daytime, nighttime glamour
Makes you feel like new
Singing, dancing, engaging
Nothing you can’t do!

Hustling, bustling city squares
Crisscrossing asphalt streets
Coffee shops by the dozens
Invite strangers to meet

Spectacles, smells, odd routines
Invite strangers to stroll
Events in a city park
Offer a grassy knoll

A haven for many
Sin city to a few
Life in the city
Never bids adieu!

Welcome to the city!
Ready to wheel around?

Hail a taxi
In a heated rush
Paint the city
With your own life’s brush!

catniplogosm1

©2015 catnipoflife
Sharla Lee Shults

Quote for the Moment: A city is a place where there is no need to wait for next week to get the answer to a question, to taste the food of any country, to find new voices to listen to and familiar ones to listen to again.

            —Margaret Mead (American cultural anthropologist, 1901–1978)

Have you ever felt like walking directly into a picture? The image being so clear, so persuasive you actually felt the scene? It could be you’ve imagined a setting from books or magazines you read or heard described. What drew you in could be the pleasantry of the landscape, the land, the horses or the people. The image became so implanted in your mind nothing could stop you from searching for such a place. You drove, drove, drove until you found it! Maybe after reading that will be the guidance you need to seek your own spot in the countryside.

Countryside Manner

At dawn beads of morning dew
Dance across spiders’ webs
Reflecting the rising sun
As pale light strokes the sky

An oratorio of frogs
Birds, mammals, creepy-crawlies
Generate the essence of song
Bringing on a tender sigh

Wide expanses of green-on-green
Adorn the rolling country hillside
With wildflowers, gems of beauty
Joining the horizon’s edge of blue

Just up the road two horses
Grazing alongside a field of buttercups
Look upward toward earth’s edge
In the forefront of the panoramic view

A wooden farmhouse in the background
Stands naked within the scene
Surrounded only by fields of green
Serene, natural beauty

An old country farmer
Plowing his corn field nearby
Reflects on life’s duty
With a swift wipe of his brow

Chickens scatter noisily
As eggs are carefully gathered
The plumpest of the plump hens
Tries to escape supper somehow

Such is the countryside manner
Where thoughts lost in daydreams
Leave imagination unbound
On wings completely free

Holding hands, shoulder-to-shoulder
Sittin’ upon the grass
Bears glory in the countryside
Now that’s the place for me!

catniplogosm1

©2015 catnipoflife
Sharla Lee Shults

Quote for the Moment: When I go out into the countryside and see the sun and the green and everything flowering, I say to myself —Yes indeed, all that belongs to me!

            —Henri Rousseau (French Post-Impressionist painter, 1844–1910)

So, what is your side of life…city or country?

cityvs.country

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Unforgettable

 
image
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Remembered time and time again
Embedded dramatic, iconic images
Symbols of excitement and joy
Inspiring, mesmerizing, unforgettable
~~~~~

For each of us, what is deemed unforgettable differs. It may be a nature experience, a walk with Mother Naturepanoramic tranquil scenes or minuscule patterns or even the depiction of natural disasters. For some, it is all in the name of love, whereas for others, it is unconditionally patriotic. The possibilities are indeed endless.

 

There are connections to the past, present, and future. Some can be classified as Defining Moments establishing, often shifting, the course of history. Many cause a plethora of tears yet remain surrounded in blissful happiness. Then, there are the sights and sounds when Flying Over America!

 

What do you consider as an unforgettable moment?

Perhaps it is as simple as the fact AUTUMN is here!

Related Article:
Shanghai_Pass
The end of the Great Wall of China at…
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True Riches

Wherever you are, whatever you are doing today, pause in reflection on whom or what you are truly grateful. You may find the naming easy coming rather naturally or you may find it takes some thought, time and effort. Remember, regardless of whether easy or hard, the goal is giving thanks and being grateful for all you have. There is a lot to be thankful for…all you have to do is sprinkle a little catnip into your life embracing the cherishable moments being careful not to let the little things go unobserved. These are the true riches in life!

True Riches

Consider that which you’re truly grateful
What would be at the top of your list—
Friends, family, loved ones, favorite pet
Something you simply cannot resist?

Material—here today, gone tomorrow
Proposes value not set in stone
But when it comes to everlasting life
It is priceless—it and it alone

Life’s filled with cherishable bounties
Each to be considered on its own
Not to be thought of haphazardly
Instead measured from birth until grown

As a tiny infant you learn dutifully
Survival outside your mother’s womb
With loving care, nourishment of adoration
You grow up going forth in full costume

From childhood to young adult
Life flows as a river of dreams—
First crush, first date, first kiss
Without worry or so it seems

Once into the world of adulthood
Life takes on a whole new meaning
Gratefulness is the bounty of life
Which is only the beginning

As the days turn into months
The months forge ahead into years
Passing by all too quickly
Memory slowly disappears

The tick-ticking hands of time
Move in only one direction
The only way to step back
Is merely in life’s reflection

Live each day for its moments
Not simply day by day
True riches of life excel
In all you do and say

catniplogosm1©2015 catnipoflife
Sharla Lee Shults

Could it be that the mystic gratefulness in the depth of every human heart sings with “a still, small voice,” and is easily drowned out by the noise we endure and the noise we make?

           —Bro. David Steindl-Rast O.S.B. (Catholic Benedictine monk, b. 1926)

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Summer Relaxation

catnip_cat_grass_and_greens_for_your_cat_s1What is your favorite summer relaxation? What about observing a sunset within the sea, shells and smells at the beach? Living in the fast-paced world of e-this & e-that makes it easy for life to become so stressful that the need to get away is at the top of the list. Ready to relax? Kick back, breathe deeply the salty air, take a few moments for a quiet walk…simply get away welcoming peace at the end of the day.

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Perhaps yours is . . .

 

A Walk along the Beach

Radiance on the horizon
Broadcasts day is about to begin
Sending sunbeams of golden warmth
To soothe, visibly gilding the skin

Sunlight reflects on the water
Mirroring synthetic jewels
With prismatic colors arching
Inside raindrops like cultured pearls

Noonday scorching, sweltering heat
Offers the darkest, most perfect tan
Ebbing the tide to erase footprints
Where sand pipers once swiftly ran

Breathtaking views of glistening sand
Stretch outward miles upon miles
Beach sandcastles’ unique creations
Generate smiles upon smiles

Summer evenings, moonlit nights
Flaunt stars for strollers to abide
Lovers walk lonely beaches
Staying close, in step side-by-side

Tears in the pale moonlight
Unleash desires to cry no more
For loving thoughts triumph
Hand-in-hand along the seashore

catniplogosm1©2015 catnipoflife
Sharla Lee Shults

Today, walking the beach, I was reminded of the bounty of the earth in the form of wild blackberries – a free feast, with no one else bothering to partake.

—Jonathan Lockwood Huie (Author, n.d.)

4 Comments »

Blessings at Easter

Happy_Easter

Easter brings blessings to all who believe
Joy in celebration this special day
Hope in all the tomorrows to come
Wisdom in following the right way…

 Comfort in the fulfilled promise
Fellowship in the spirit of love
Truth in divine faithful guidance
All by the hands from Heaven above

cv-line-divider-hi

While enjoying Easter with family
Take a seat at Mother Nature’s table
With her intoxicating, bold “buffets”
Bountiful, readily available

Arrange a bowl of fresh cut flowers
To bring cheery greetings in early morn
Soak up pure inspirational goodness
While enjoying what sunbeams adorn

Easter-blessings-peace-with-love

“He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By his wounds, you have been healed.” — 1 Peter 2:24

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Beyond the Box

The expression ‘stepping outside the box’ takes you away from redundant routines into territory filled with intensiveness, often nervousness, but at the same time, opens up new horizons, bold ideas. It is a mindset establishing an entirely new way of thinking ultimately guiding you toward listening to life around you from a totally new perspective. When you wake up in the morning, what are the first thoughts that come to your mind? If they encompass dread or a boring outlook, it is time to cast off the dreary atmosphere that surrounds you. Gaze out the window, listen to life’s songs!

BEYOND THE BOX

 A room bears semblance to a box
Ceiling to floor, wall to wall
Confining that which is inside
Posing not much change at all

Outside a bedroom window
Surfaces life beyond the box
Unfurling naturally
Without the need for alarm clocks

As daylight filters through the window
The new morning rises into view
Not to be seen as melancholy
But one bidding the old adieu

Greetings with the beam of light
Snap attention when your alarm rings
Not much else greets early morn
Except the voice a “good morning” brings

Consider the birds as they awaken
Filling the atmosphere with song
An ambiance of joyful melodies
To carry with you all day long

Ponder how nature greets the morning
Eye to horizon, in between
Unfolding in striking harmony
Monopolizing your first scene

Ease toward the window’s light
Thwarting thoughts of the day before
No reason stuck inside the box
This day, days to come, no more

Thoughts now align with the day ahead
Beyond the box into the light
Listening patiently, intensely
Not to miss a moment in flight

©2015 Sharla Lee Shults

I desperately needed to reevaluate, get outside and beyond the box and my head. Time out again to reinvent. Fight or flight.

            —Marilyn Grad (Self-taught artist, n.d.)

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The True Meaning of Christmas

May we never be so focused on getting gifts & PRESENTS 

that we forget to receive…
 blustar
…the gift of HIS PRESENCE!
 blustar
 sunburst
 Spread the joy!
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Ready to relax?

What is your favorite form of relaxation? Walking barefoot in the park wiggling your toes in dew-dappled grass? Watching a sunset while enjoying a glass of wine, alone or perhaps with a loved one? Getting a manicure or pedicure, maybe both? A day at the beach? What about a massage while listening to soothing music set against a backdrop of a waterfall? Any of the above, none of the above. Endless possibilities. Get yourself in serious thought mode. Write it down. Maybe even make a list since a whole day for relaxation has been set aside.

August 15 is…

National Relaxation Day

Cat_Divider

Happy National Relaxation Day, y’all! Just chill!

We all live in such a fast-paced world that it is easy for life to become very stressful and overwhelming at times. Pressure, anxiety, tension are constant companions so get away from all the stress! That’s right. Leave it behind. Take a step back and slow down the pace. If not for the day, go for an hour. Kick back, breathe deeply, take the next few moments (as many as you can), grab a lounge chair and RELAX!
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cat-lounging
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Daily Dose of Laughter

Laughter-Sparkles-Sunlight

What is life without laughter? That is one category personally I have no clue other than it would be total boredom! With a husband that is a joke waiting to be told, a smile waiting to happen, and who considers a day wasted if not at sometime during that day making someone else laugh, there is always sunshine even on a rainy day. Sure we have our ups and downs, bad communication and misunderstandings, but who doesn’t? That is LIFE! It’s all in how you handle the moments with even the bad ones somehow allowing a smile to emerge along with flowing teardrops.

I never know at any moment in time what might he might say to knock me off my feet or send me bending double with laughter. Here are two that are totally hilarious. One a couple of years back and another recently.

My middle name is Anita. I have never really liked that name, never use it, never write it, especially since marriage. Out of the blue Jim calls me from across the room, “Anita! Anita!” I turn with a scowl look on my face responding, “Anita? Don’t call me Anita!” His immediate reply, “But, baby, I needa ya!” Get the pun?

For this one, keep in mind we just celebrated our Pearl Anniversary on July 10.

We are having some work done on our sprinkler system since the grass in the backyard is dying from all the heat and lack of sufficient water. The man putting in the irrigation system is named Jackie. Jim approaches Jackie and calls him over to the back porch, “Jackie, do you know why I love my wife so much?” Of course, Jackie responds with all sorts of commonalities and a few funnies of his own but remains somewhat perplexed because he knows Jim is going to come up with a doozie. And a doozie he did indeed. “She is beautiful, works like a hired hand, makes damn good biscuits and she doesn’t snore!”

What can I say? I love this man!

Laughter3

When it comes to laughter, there is hardly anything funnier than children and animals so let’s not stop here. Watch the video to end your day or perhaps begin a new day with a smile on your face and a laugh in your heart!

 The cats are the best! What do you think? Which is your favorite?

Make someone’s day…smile, then LAUGH!

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