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!

Mother’s Day

“A mother is a person who seeing there are only four pieces of pie for five people, promptly announces she never did care for pie.” ~Tenneva Jordan

 To my mother, Anita Louise Weston Lee (1919 – 2010):

You Don’t Seem So Far Away

 Sometimes you seem so far away
Memorable moments shorten the way

Moments you firmly held my hand
Guiding me along life’s hardened land

Distance spans an epic terrain
Visions of your smile block out any pain

Smiles of delight as well as tears
Carrying us through the roughest years

As tears fall with each passing day
Voice of memory keeps sadness astray

In other words. . .

Though you seem so far away
You are as close as my thoughts

Thoughts remaining ever so clear
Never to fade from year to year

Images implanted in my mind
Lift my spirits at any time

Spirits to refresh my soul
Keeping me toward life’s goal

 For you see. . .

 Thoughts of you eternally stay
You don’t seem so far away

Echoes ©2012
Sharla Lee Shults

From: catnipoflife
To: all Mothers near and far


May your sons and daughters
Know how special you are

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Thoughts on the Easter Lily

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

Blooming of Easter Lilies

Having become totally absorbed in the thoughts on the Easter lily, click the video clip to the right and witness a time lapse of the Blooming of Easter Lilies.

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.

The Lily. . .

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

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

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Daily Reflection

We all write because we have a passion for sharing knowledge and understanding that will somehow embrace someone else’s life. Of course, with writing comes a lot of reading. Whether it is selected for research, entertainment or enrichment, each of us seek encouragement and reach out for visions in our own unique way.

A very important aspect of life is that of daily reflection, which comes in many forms, shapes and sizes. It is a means for sharing love, dreams and inspiration to send a heart racing, free a heart from grief, or perhaps offer a path for forgiveness.  Emotional journeys are the keystones for setting experiences or imaginations to paper. Poetry is a formidable mode of expression to soothe the heart and lift the spirit. Fiction explores a world seen through the mind’s eye and casts imaginations into depths often times seemingly unfathomable. Non-fiction offers a path to obtain information or to experience art and relive/revive history.

For whatever reason you write or desire to write, keep that passion alive! Let your fingers take their daily walks (across the keyboard or glide effortlessly with pen and paper in hand) as your mind expands all horizons working out the creativity stored in the scrapbook of your mind.

Everyone has a story to tell and every story has its time and place to be read among thousands upon thousands waiting to be discovered.

Reflect on your mental imagery and that which is stored in your Scrapbook of the Mind. . .

Scrapbook of the Mind

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Wild flowers adorn a country hillside
Emanating shades of purple and green
Intermingled poppies add accents of gold
And overshadow new buds in between

Pastel colors gleam within a rainbow
Creating a hand-painted watercolor sky
Honeybees swarm feasting on sweet nectar
As passers-by dreamily let out a sigh

Fields of green expand the horizon
Rich in chlorophyll from the warm sun
Ardent admirers decide to linger
Tempted to take off their shoes and run

Tall twin oaks appear majestic in the distance
Offering cool shade after the summer rain
Travelers venture outward stepping into a picture
Wanting to remain, never to leave again

Visions through a rear view mirror
Capture picture-perfect images of a rare find
Eyelids blink at shutter speed
Storing mental pictures in the scrapbook of the mind

©Echoes 2004
Sharla Lee Shults

“Just as pieces stitched together in a quilt warm our bodies,
scrapbooks bind together memories to warm our hearts. “

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We Share the Same Dreams

There is a question that to this day still perplexes me: Why not make any day a Valentine’s Day? Is it just the cards, flowers and gifts on this one day that make the heart truly sing? I don’t think so!

Think about it. Each day begins with a sunrise and ends with a sunset. There are dawnings and there are twilights each flaunting spectacular colors equal to the challenge of any prism. From delicate to blazing, butterscotch to psychedelic hues, watercolor pallets emerge in a burst that fathoms beyond all imagination. Showers of gold outline sunsets of pink and echo angelic views across vast landscapes and open seas. As we rise each morning and retire each evening, the angels dance across both clear and cloudy skies leaving footprints of illusion. These are perfect times as nature’s paintbrush wisps through the clouds, over the horizon and across the seas. Can you see it?

Um-m-m-m? But what about the between hours? Are they not equally as poignant?

Vibrant blue morning glories gradually shifting to natural shades of purple enhance the splendors of the day— subtle, delicate, perfectly balanced. From the low, warm light of mornings and late afternoons to the mystics of the night time, all around us nature awakens, ever emerging, ever changing. Do you feel it?

Lights, sound, action! What a magnificent, anything but silent, motion picture right before our eyes—rumbles of distant thunder announcing a Springtime shower, the roaring of the ocean along the beach in Summer, the rustle of leaves in Autumn, the crunching of footfalls in the dry snow of Winter! Can you hear it?

The smell of rain along a dusty road, salty sea spray to raw ocean smells, smell of bayberry and cinnamon, and the burning smell of a cozy open fire invite all to lift their noses and take a deep breath. Do you smell it?

Delight comes with candlelit dinners for two, double straws in a single vanilla float, cuisines of festivals with every crumb taste tested, gripping taste of hot cocoa around a blazing campfire and so much more. Can you taste it?

Love is sharing whether by sight, feel, sound, smell or taste. Share with the one you love that in love, We Share the Same Dreams. . .

 

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Nature’s Doorway

What has your day been like today? Have you stepped outside to observe life at its best? Need a break from your daily routines?  If you answered yes to any of these questions, then it is time for you to take a peek at Nature’s Doorway.

Are you ready? Then, open the door and come on in. . .
“All things are artificial, for nature is the art of God” – Thomas Browne

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Welcome to Catnip of Life

I know no subject more elevating, more amazing, more ready to the poetical enthusiasm, the philosophical reflection, and the moral sentiment than the works of nature. Where can we meet such variety, such beauty, such magnificence?

                                                                                 —James Thomson (Scottish Poet, 1700–1748)

Isn’t life completely surrounded by the raw touch of nature? Captivating moments are right before our eyes, music to our ears, within our very grasp and under our noses waiting to be enjoyed. To inevitably understand living, we must 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!

smelltherain1

Nothing like the smell of rain, the cleansing touch of nature!

The beliefs behind Catnip of Life expose nature as a diamond in the rough and its power to heal. Poetic verses reveal openness to the world around us and how simple everyday happenings and observances make a difference, not only in our lives but also in the lives of others. From reflections where happiness is found with the falling rain and sunshine eases our sorrows to experiencing The Thread of Life where life is given a second chance, there exists excitement, enchantment, emotion, heartbreak and contentment.

But, where do we begin? Man in his inherent nature commands daily strife. So-o-o-o, all the reason to take time to inhale, exhale deeply and breathe—breathe the breath of life. After that deep breath, close your eyes and ponder for a moment  this question: Have you ever stood in the pouring rain or taken time to actually smell the rain?

Click the page link catnipoflife poetry and scroll down to Smell the Rain. Take time to reflect on your life’s experiences. . .

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Hello world!

Welcome to my new blog Catnip of Life. It is my goal to open your senses to the world around us reflective of God’s daily presence. Life is filled with opportunities to explore nature’s bounties for enjoyment, enlightenment and healing. Don’t let times of happiness or sorrow remain unobserved, hidden within the shadows of your mind, unembraced and silent. Within the confines of these pages will be opportunities to examine life through your own eyes and then, ponder and reflect upon what is or has been missing or gone unnoticed.

Step outside, look around, and listen to life’s songs

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