Thunder and Lightning

Video

“That is my thunder, by God; the villains will play my thunder, but not my play.” – Alexander Pope

Two black-haired girls spell T-R-O-U-B-L-E.  Little do they know, I can tell what they are up to even though they speak in their own dialect. It’s easy to read minds, you know since I am the queen of Mischief.

Frame by frame, a series of shots put together to capture this story of stealing their thunder by taking over their acts at lightning speed.

I had the last laugh and the best hug from Thomas.

Ivan “wheely” loves the new bike Vancouver Twitter users gave him!

Meanwhile in Vancouver, the kindness of Vancouverites written by Stanley a homeless writer that I follow helping other homeless people by using social media. A good way to end a long week, Thank you, Stanley.

sqwabb

Ivan says that he want to hug each and every one of the generous strangers who helped to get him “back on the road.”

After I wrote on my blog Tuesday evening (February 6) how my homeless friend Ivan Saunderson had been left hobbling on a bum leg after the bicycle he relied on for mobility (not to mention his livlihood as a bottle picker) was stolen, an amazing fundraising effort began Wednesday morning on Twitter to make good the loss.

Spurred on and coordinated by the efforts of several people, including of Georgia Straight editor Charlie Smith, homeless advocate Jeremy Hunkaand Linda Lupini, the executive vice president of the Provincial Health Services Authority and aided through the day by retweets likes from dozens of engaged Vancouver Twitterati, an amazing $545 was collected by 4 p.m. Wednesday afternoon.

Once it sunk in that complete strangers had so…

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Discovery of Knowledge Network

Gallery

  Reporting from the streets of Vancouver, Canada, Stanley Q. Woodvine writes about the challenges of homeless life, as well as on personal interests like anime and computers. via sqwabb — Discover Nothing better to do tonight and looking for knowledge … Continue reading

The Perfect Card

Image

Looking for a perfect card that will match the person’s personality can be a challenge especially for my sister who never ever change. She epitomizes the word sameness. That is, the same hair style for all those years.

She wears her hair on a bun!

a-bun

Her hair is naturally long and black. Lucky person, no white hair for a 70-year-old. Unlike me, my hair is arctic white. I must have received all the white genes in our family.

As for a birthday card, we found the perfect image of her.

img_0822

I kid you not, when we were younger, we ‘teased’ her hair to create a beehive.

Happy Birthday, sister.

Letter to Premier of BC and Ministry of Education

Gallery

This gallery contains 1 photo.

Today, I e-mailed the Premier of BC, Christy Clark, and Ministry of Education, Mike Bernier reminding them their responsibility as elected officials. As much as I want to remain quiet about what is happening in Vancouver public system, I am … Continue reading

I Pick this ONE!

I CHOOSE!

“I will choose to see the good, the stories of courage, humanity, and compassion that remind me that man was made in the image of God, a God of love,”

Song Bird Songs

hate

My defiance takes a different note,

“They” want me to fear

So I will choose love not hate,

For only love casts out fear.

“They” want to manipulate my mind just as they manipulated the killers.

No go! I have free choice, I choose good, not evil.

“They” want me to cower, to become afraid to voice my own faith,

I choose instead to confirm my faith in a God of love,

The only one able to deal with “them”.

“They” cannot be “bombed out of existence”

Like the hydra “they” will only grow more heads.

Like chemo or radiation, that may give temporary reprieve, (while creating devastation) but it will not destroy the “stem cells”.

The real perpetrators lurk unseen in the shadows and the “cancer” will spread and grow again,

We see only the pawns in their diabolical power game.

Yet I will sing,

For God himself plays…

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No End

As I advance in years , i think a lot about friendships and wonder what truly is a friend. What is friendship to you?

ME and the Boss

Virginia 039

.

“A friendship

that can end

never really

began”

.

~ Publilius Syrus

.

Acquaintances, pals, gang members,

one of the flock, a member of the tribe,

but not really a true friend.

The true friend is the person

who loves you unconditionally,

the soul that is there for you

in good times, in bad times

and in our heart all of the time.

Today, be a true friend,

never end a friendship.

Friendship can never really end.

Friendship is a priceless gem

that is to be valued and protected.

.

ME and the Boss

.

.

.

.

..

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What Day Is It ? ? ?

ME, you said it better. TGIM or TGIT (thank good it’s TODAY!)

ME and the Boss

033

.

“Happy is as happy does.

Happiness does not

recognize days.

Mondays, bring it on!

Don’t let Mondays stop you

from being happy.”

.

~ Perpetua

.

As a matter of fact,

there should be very little in this world

that should prevent you from being happy.

Remember, happy or sad, this too shall pass.

Regardless of the day, work your magic,

share the love, be kind, be patient, be tolerant

and know that a laugh a day

will keep the doctor away.

Happiness does not recognize days.

Happiness is helping someone help themselves.

.

ME and the Boss

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.

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..

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Mending Lives

Gallery

This gallery contains 5 photos.

Stitching keeps broken parts together. A simple stitch can literally mend lives. All it takes is a sewing needle, thread, pair of hands and a heart determined to restore in order to stay connected. To prove the point, these are series … Continue reading

THANK YOU FOR SAVING OUR LIVES

Paulette is right. To save your life, one has to save others, too. Be it a human being or the ‘under dogs’. These are innocent creatures that will give us unconditional love.

Paulette has written three books already and all proceeds are use to save the ‘under dog’.

Let us help by purchasing her books.
http://www.amazon.com/Live-Out-Loud-Novel/dp/0988846896/ref=tmm_pap_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1438210990&sr=1-3

Love you Paulette for your kindness. Perpetua.

The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap

To everyone who has bought my book here is what your money is going toward. These are dogs rescued this year alone. This is in addition to funds going to SPARC from The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap (http://sparcsaveslives.org/) and CARL from His Name Was Ben (http://www.carldogs.org/)

14 y:o Terrance saved 14 year old Terrance going home

ARTIE: Bline senior Artie, the blind senior, safe at home

ARTIE DOESN'T CARE THAT HE'S BLIND HE'S FREE AND HAPPY Artie doesn’t care that he’s blind. He’s free. And happy.

Ballard went to the Bishon rescue group Ballard went to the Bishon rescue group

Bonnie from the Downey shelter Bonnie happy at home

choo choo going home Choo Choo going home

DOLLY GOING HOME Dolly tugging on that leash to get home and she’s on her way there.

FERNIE'S FREEDOM RIDE Fernie’s freedom ride

FOXY'S FREEDOM RIDE Foxy’s freedom ride

GERALDINE'S freedom ride. Looking a little scared. Geraldine’s freedom ride, looking a little scared.

A HAPPIER GERALDINE AFTER RESCUE A happier Geraldine with daddy.

Going home Going home

home sweet home Home sweet home and that grass feels so good.

Jessica's freedom ride Jessica’s freedom ride.

JULES FREEDOME RIDE Jules’ freedom ride

Lobo with dad Lobo with new dad who’s wearing a shit that says “love.” Things are looking up.

Lolita and daddy. Lolita with…

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A cat must have three different names

Video

THE NAMING OF CATS ~ T.S. Eliot

The Naming of Cats is a difficult matter,
It isn’t just one of your holiday games;
You may think at first I’m as mad as a hatter
When I tell you, a cat must have THREE DIFFERENT NAMES.
First of all, there’s the name that the family use daily,
Such as Peter, Augustus, Alonzo or James,
Such as Victor or Jonathan, George or Bill Bailey –
All of them sensible everyday names.
There are fancier names if you think they sound sweeter,
Some for the gentlemen, some for the dames:
Such as Plato, Admetus, Electra, Demeter –
But all of them sensible everyday names.
But I tell you, a cat needs a name that’s particular,
A name that’s peculiar, and more dignified,
Else how can he keep up his tail perpendicular,
Or spread out his whiskers, or cherish his pride?
Of names of this kind, I can give you a quorum,
Such as Munkustrap, Quaxo, or Coricopat,
Such as Bombalurina, or else Jellylorum-
Names that never belong to more than one cat.
But above and beyond there’s still one name left over,
And that is the name that you never will guess;
The name that no human research can discover –
But THE CAT HIMSELF KNOWS, and will never confess.
When you notice a cat in profound meditation,
The reason, I tell you, is always the same:
His mind is engaged in a rapt contemplation
Of the thought, of the thought, of the thought of his name:
His ineffable effable
Effanineffable
Deep and inscrutable singular Name.

via: Brain Pickings by 

Making the most out of it.

Morning Story and Dilbert

“Life will only come once, so make the most out of it.”  via Words to Live By.

Suffer?  I refuse.

Being out of job for the past few days due to teachers’ job action, I am enjoying the four hours of being in the public supporting the teachers during their strike.  Meeting people on the street, getting to know teachers and peers, more time to exchange words , playing with dogs at the park, watching all the feathered creatures and enjoying the garden across the office are just a few pleasures that embrace during this tumultuous period.

As part of being in a unionized job, we respect the picket line.  We do not cross the line to support the teachers in solidarity.

I have so much respect and admiration for the teachers. They are like the second parent of the child.  As a matter of fact, most children spend more time at school than spending time with their parents.

It appears school ended prematurely for the children but the graduating class are still required to take their final exams with or without the teachers.

In the meantime, I will continue to count my steps as I pound the sidewalk walking side by side with the teachers and still have a few laughs along the way.

And it’s not all that bad, actually.  The professional staffs are still working to step on the plate that we left behind at the office.  On top of that, they come out to converse with us bringing  a  box of donuts and muffins to fuel our energy.

Success

 

tulips“To laugh often and much,

to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children,

to earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends,

to appreciate beauty,

to find the best in others,

to leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch, or a redeemed social condition;

to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded!”

source: Ralph Waldo Emerson. poets for justice

Transparency

elephant

“We had better share our bewilderments. By hiding them from each other we should not hide them from ourselves.”
― C.S. Lewis,

Artist Pascal Chesneau won the David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation 2014 Wildlife Artist of the Year award for his stunning Transparence Elephant sculpture.

Three ways I interpret this art work:

  • An elephant in the room
  • The vanishing animal
  • Endangered species

It’s no big surprise that he won the award not just his artistic ability and it’s an excellent conversational piece with so many meanings.

What does this mean to you?
What emotions arises from you?
What are you hiding?

Update: National Geographic News June 16, 2014 ~ Elephant Satao: Monumental Lost

Father and Son

Father and Son

“A little boy who had been to Sunday School told his father that he learned that God the Father and Son were equal.

The father said: “That is ridiculous. I am your father; you are my son. I existed a long time before you.”

“No,” said the boy, “you did not begin to be a father until I began to be a son.”

~ Archbishop Fulton Sheen

Happy Father’s Day To One and All.  Blessings.

Rest

Open Sea Victoria, BC Canada

Read these words aloud as a prayer for this stage of your life—the fullness and generativity of your being.

Rest: A Poem

I believe in all that has never yet been spoken.
I want to free what waits within me
so that what no one has dared to wish for
may for once spring clear
without my contriving.

If this is arrogant, God, forgive me,
but this is what I need to say.
May what I do flow from me like a river,
no forcing and no holding back,
the way it is with children.

Then in these swelling and ebbing currents,
these deepening tides moving out, returning,
I will sing you as no one ever has,
streaming through widening channels
into the open sea.

— Rainer Maria Rilke, Rilke’s Book of Hours: Love Poems to God
(Translated by Anita Barrows and Joanna Macy)

via Richard Rohr

Extra, Extra. Read all about it.

A colleague dropped a newspaper in my in tray stating that one of our peers wants me to have it.  Oh?  Thank you.  What a special treatment I received that day.  I hardly read the newspaper since it’s mostly bad news anyway. This will just end up in the recycle box.
extra extra

Front page pictures can really be upsetting when it focuses on local news about commuting.   There are so many extra people during peak hours and we could use an extra cars of train to accommodate the growing population in Vancouver. Not just that, we need extra officers to patrol the trains and the stations for the safety of commuters.  Officers that serve and protect.

Waterfront Station

Waterfront Station

Of course, I did not read the paper; after all, I was working.  Then the In Box of my e-mail became busy.  My family has sent me e-mails first thing in the morning.  What could it be possibly be that I am getting their attention as well.  My sister wrote:

Am here @dentist reading ::: then I see this ha ha
Sent on the TELUS Mobility network with BlackBerry

With an attachment:

Province today's news Aug 22. 2012

Province today’s news Aug 22. 2012

This was a surprise.  I was just having an animated conversation with a lady gathering information on how I deal with danger during my commute.  I did not expect that my conversation and name will appear on the paper.

Proud to be

Philippines_flag

The highlight of my mornings going to school in the Philippines is singing the national anthem.  Then we all can start our day of studying.

We all go out in the courtyard, dress up in our uniforms, with our right hand on our left chest, eyes fixed on the flag, a conductor moving her hand the three-quarters beat,  and we sing with feelings and gusto. In doing so, this is how we learn patriotism to the country and flag of the Philippines.

Even the lyrics alone makes me feel the freedom and pride how my ancestors fought hard to gain our independence.

Land of the morning
Child of the sun returning
With fervor burning
Thee do our souls adore.

Land dear and holy,
Cradle of noble heroes,
Ne’er shall invaders
Trample thy sacred shores.

Ever within thy skies and through thy clouds
And o’er thy hills and seas;
Do we behold thy radiance, feel the throb
Of glorious liberty.

Thy banner dear to all hearts
Its sun and stars alight,
Oh, never shall its shining fields
Be dimmed by tyrant’s might.

I must say, I love the Philippine National Anthem. It was first written in Spanish, then translated in Filipino, and finally in English, a total of three versions versions you can listen here.

Symbols on the Flag of the Republic of the Philippines:

  •  Blue – peace, truth, and justice.
  •  Red – patriotism and valor.
  •  White triangle – equality and brotherhood.
  •  Three stars on the corners of the triangle – the three main geographical regions of the country namely Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao.
  •  Sun at the center of the triangle – eight rays representing the eight Philippine provinces that started the revolt against Spain that symbolize unity, freedom, people’s democracy and sovereignty.

Very brief background:

  •  Spain ruled the Philippine for 300 years. Magellan discovered the Philippines. Catholicism is the main religion due to the Spanish Rule.
  •  America came to the Philippines.  An outbreak of war ensued between Spain and America.
  •  Spain surrendered the Philippines to the America.
  •  Philippines revolted against America.
  •  America proclaimed that Philippines’  independence is the 4th of July.

Just a minute now, Philippines does not want the America’s national day of holiday. They wanted their own date to fall on June 12.  Finally, America approved it  on August 4, 1964 that the Philippines’ National Independence is June 12.

I am a Canadian now but deep in my heart, I am still a proud Filipino.

In death you see the heavens

Video

Lyric from this post

Death

Everything you know is gone away
Your soul so small and cold
It’s gone with winter snow
Never to return

And your friends so lively now
They’ll all be with you deep in the ground
They’ll be right next to you
You’ll strain but you’ll never hear a sound

So you begin to cry

Your tears water the ground
and forests spring up all green and proud
Your body so tired and worn
A tree trunk takes form within you

And your hair flames like the sun
Your feet become the animals that run
Your arms reach wide and high
In death you want to embrace all of life

But there’s a thorn in your side

All your stupid jokes
and all your misplaced notes and
all those ugly feelings
and all of that deceiving it
never quite existed it
robbed you of the present
alive your arm was twisted
in death you see the heavens

Product of Enlightenment

walk away
“What kind of a person does Enlightenment produce?”

Said the Master:

“To be public-spirited and belong to no party,
to move without being bound to any given course,
to take things as they come,
have no remorse for the past,
no anxiety for the future,
to move when pushed,
to come when dragged,
to be like a mighty gale,
like a feather in the wind,
like weeds floating on a river,
like a mill stone meekly grinding,
to love all creation equally
as heaven and earth are equal to all
—such is the product of Enlightenment.”

 

On hearing these words, one of the younger disciples cried, “This sort of teaching is not for the living but for the dead,” and walked away, never to return.  ~ Anthony de Mello, SJ

MORSEL: All Spiritual being is in man. A wise old proverb says, “God comes to see us without bell,” that is, as there is no screen or ceiling between our heads and the infinite heavens, so is there no bar or wall in the soul where man, the effect, ceases, and God, the cause, begins.  ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson, Essays “The Over-Soul”

Sticking Together

monkeys (1)Sometimes, we need a hug.

“For me, personally, it’s not about creating something that looks like a photograph, which is often a moment in time, rather, I want to create work that connects with people and provokes an emotion whilst also being pleasing to look at.”

“I was struck by the closeness of these Barbary macaques to each other and spent a long time watching this couple, pondering the relationships they have and how similar they can be to our own. I want people who view the work to reflect back upon themselves and remember a time when they had the same intimacy and closeness with someone, be it a parent and child, siblings or partners. For me, it’s especially about that intimacy between two individuals where no one and nothing else exists in that moment. The softness of fur embodies the tenderness between them but also protection from the jagged rocks and the outside world. I want to show how feelings for someone special can often help see us through difficult times.”

Artist Colin Prestage created this incredibly tender portrait of two monkeys hugging in a piece called Sticking Together.

Conversion: The thing that we are.

It was the year 1998, staying at a friend’s place in North Vancouver, I was in bed, waking up to the breaking of dawn. I closed my eyes, said my morning prayer, and suddenly a violent wind surrounds me. Thinking that I left the window open, the mighty wind will disturb everything in the room. I wanted to get up to close it but my body cannot move, and I fell into deep peace.

This is the detail of what happened to me written in this post.

In 2010, I found this article taken from the journal of Jacques Fesch, a young Frenchman who was sentenced to death in 1957 murdering a police officer. He had a profound experience in his prison cells that lead to his conversion to faith.

Jacques Fesch Journal

Jacques Fesch Journal

When Fesch had his conversion, I wasn’t born yet, but to see that our experience is similar is uncanny. What is it that we were both given this sanctifying grace that is available to anyone, believer or not, saint or sinners, young or old.

From a Catholic perspective, I can only relate to this experience from this verse:

“And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a mighty wind coming, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. And there appeared to them parted tongues as it were of fire, and it sat upon every one of them: And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they began to speak with divers tongues, according as the Holy Ghost gave them to speak. [Acts 2:2-4]”

It is a moving experience.

The unbelievable thing about conversion is that the new person that we are become transformed that we joyfully forget the way we were before.

Look at it at this point of view of Shakespeare’s play As You Like It.  Oliver, the would-be murderer that conspires to kill his brother Orlando, undergoes a powerful conversion.  He confessed, “I do not shame to tell you what I was, since my conversion so sweetly tastes, being the thing that I am.”

Grade 5 Music Composition

Musical composition by Annelise Yates (Grade 5)

Musical composition by Annelise Yates (Grade 5)

The Impossible Adventure

Took a swim through the sea
In search of what could not be
Yet there within the waves
A whale with a friendly gaze

Chorus:
How does one chase a dream?
It’s not an easy as it seems
Keep your eyes on the prize
Relax and enjoy the ride

I felt a long pull
To go where the whale might go
Followed it in a haze
And if I should fall behind
I focus right and fix my stride
After a while the going gets rough
As I try to keep my head above
My lungs on fire, my legs grow weak
Just as my chances are looking bleak
The waves turn grey like the sky
I know that I’m going to cry

Chorus:
My eyes well up
And through the tears
I see the whale crystal clear
And in the distance I see a shore
It seems like something I’ve seen before
Then and there I realize
The beach before my very eyes
Is the one I left behind

 

Background:
There are several exhibits (again) on display at work created by the students. Of all the exhibits, I admire this musical composition. Making a mental note, I must take a photo for show and tell. Of course, I know very well not to rely on my memory; it likes to procrastinate.

Yesterday afternoon, when I returned from my break, I was ready to take a picture but when I arrived the board was empty. I was so disappointed and I was muttering to myself. A couple of men and a girl must have heard me and they turned around. Told them my disappointment that the song I was admiring is gone!

“Are you looking for this?” One of the men said.

“OMG! That’s it! Do you mind if I take a photo and share it in my blog?” I was so ecstatic that all is well.

Forgetting my manners dues to excitement, I really should be speaking to the girl because it’s her composition. Regaining my composure, I addressed the man and the young lady at the same time, if it’s alright.

“Of course.” They gladly allowed me to take some shots.

Filled with gratitude with their kindness, I promised that I will send them a link of this post.

What an Impossible Adventure I had.  I am pretty sure as Annelies matures, there will be room for improvement in her creative mind.

This is just a ride.

“The world is just like a ride at an amusement park, and when you choose to go on it, you think it’s real because that’s how powerful our minds are.  And the ride goes up and down and round and round; it has thrills and chills and it’s very brightly coloured and it’s very loud and it’s fun … for a while.

Some people have been on the ride for a long time, and they begin to question: “is this real, or is this just a ride?”  And other people have remembered, and they come back to us, and they say, “Hey — don’t worry, don’t be afraid — EVER — because this is just a ride.”

A life lived on a twirling, whirling planet near the edge of a spinning galaxy makes for a hell of a ride.

If we’re lucky, it’s sometimes like a ride on a bus with a wisecracking bus driver.  But from crib to coffin, it’s mostly a trip into the Unknown.

 

by Geoff Olson ~ Reflections on light and darkness” Just a Ride”
Quote from: Bill Hicks ~ a fairground metaphor for existence
Image: Tumblr

Poultry Philosophers

chicken crossing

Photo: Simon Blackley/ Flickr

I like to contemplate deep thoughts such as What is the meaning of life? Why is the sky blue? Why did the chicken cross the road? Searching for answers via Google, these are some responses from the great thinkers.

Plato: For the greater good.

Karl Marx: It was an historical inevitability.

Nietzsche: Because if you gaze too long across the Road, the Road gazes also across you.

Jean-Paul Sartre: In order to act in good faith and be true to itself, the chicken found it necessary to cross the road.

Albert Einstein: Did the chicken cross the road or did the road move beneath the chicken?

Aristotle: To actualize its potential.

Buddha: If you ask this question, you deny your own chicken-nature.

Emily Dickinson: Because it could not stop for death. Epicurus: For fun.

Ralph Waldo Emerson: It didn’t cross the road; it transcended it.

Johann Friedrich von Goethe: The eternal hen-principle made it do it.

Ernest Hemingway: To die. In the rain.

Werner Heisenberg: We are not sure which side of the road the chicken was on, but it was moving very fast.

David Hume: Out of custom and habit.

Sappho: Due to the loveliness of the hen on the other side, more fair than all of Hellas’ fine armies.

Henry David Thoreau: To live deliberately … and suck all the marrow out of life.

Mark Twain: The news of its crossing has been greatly exaggerated.

Joseph Stalin: I don’t care. Catch it. Crack its eggs to make my omelette.

Captain James T. Kirk: To boldly go where no chicken has gone before.

Fox Mulder: You saw it cross the road with your own eyes. How many more chickens have to cross before you believe it?

Bill Clinton: I did not cross the road with THAT chicken. What do you mean by chicken? Could you define chicken, please?

The Bible:  And God came down from the heavens, and He said unto the chicken, “Thou shalt cross the road.”  And the chicken crossed the road, and there was much rejoicing.

Dr. Seuss: Did the chicken cross the road? Did he cross the toad? Yes! The chicken cross the road, but why it crossed the road, I’ve not been told!

Colonel Sanders:  I missed one?

In your opinion, why did the chicken cross the road?

The Woodpecker

The sound of the rattling call of wuk, wuk, wuk, I can tell that the woodpecker is in the neighborhood.  The call starts slow and short; then it progresses to a rapid tone and louder.  As it turned out, the Woodpecker is either up on the roof or down below in the garden.

Between the Seagulls, Robins and Crows, the Woodpecker has to compete with these birds.  Small as it is and alone, it can scare the competitors just by its territorial call.

I was hoping that it would stay longer so I can enjoy this elusive bird but it stays only for a short while.

Last night, my neighbor reported to me that we have to have a funeral service.

Of course, I don’t particularly become surprised with her mellow dramatic character; I’m used to her performance. When there is death in the building, it’s either a cat, rat, mouse or a dead plant.  I normally volunteer to do the service.

“So… what died and where will I find the body? “ I asked.

With so much preamble from her, I basically have to pull it out from her lips what I need to hear.  First she has to make an assumption that somebody killed it.  Maybe the raccoon did it or maybe a gigantic sewer rat or etcetera, etcetera, etcetera.

As it turned out, her and her husband found the Woodpecker dead underneath the umbrella tree.  They are aware that I am very fond of this bird better than their pet crows that they feed every day.

Damn, double damn; not the beautiful bird.

Armed with a spade and hand gloves, I started the service without them.  I wanted to be alone with the  Woodpecker. I did not to give it a name because once I do, I will become personally attached to it.

The bird is still soft to touch and much more beautiful closer. With its long beak, black and orange color, polka dot speck on white fluff of feathers are stunning.  Lifting its weightless body, I laid it on a bed of flowers. Gradually covering it earth, placed rocks on top and more flowers just like being a cemetery. I buried it in my secret garden.

It was all a matter of fact what I just did.  It was alive, now it’s dead.  Deep down inside, I hope there are no babies somewhere in a hollow of a tree left behind.  Now, I am beginning to become dramatic just like my neighbor and if I don’t stop this whole thing, it will make me miserable just by thinking about it. Enough.
woodpecker fly awaySo long, Woodpecker.  Fly and cross the rainbow. Thank you for being there.

 

I wonder

Baby james reading

As a child becomes aware, he notices that the
world around him is filled with other living things.

There are animals, bugs, birds and creepy
crawlers going about their own lives
that fascinate him.

A caterpillar inches along.
A chickadee sings high in up on a tree.
A bee buzzes from flower to flower.

Suddenly he is filled with wonders.
And a million questions begin.

I wonder why kangaroos have pouches.
I wonder why caterpillars eat so much.
I wonder why camels have humps.
I wonder why horses wear shoes.
I wonder why spiders spin webs.
I wonder why the sun rises.
I wonder why whales sing.

Why do birds sing?
Why can’t penguins fly?
Why do plants have flowers?
Why do leopards have spots?
Why does it get dark at night?
Why are bees busy in summer?
Why do kangaroos have pouches?

Too many questions.

I wonder myself, too.
I cannot seem to remember for
my thoughts have been placed
by useless mundane stuff of
everyday busyness of life.

Fasten your seatbelts.

It’s going to be a bumpy ride.
This is week two of the Teacher’s rotating strike in British Columbia, Canada.
Friday is Vancouver’s turn.

Better make the best of it and go for a joy ride.

 

Source: MBRANSONS

“Dye-ing to oneself – Testament by Kanzensakura

silverfox

The following is a comment conversation between me and Kanzensakura via Say it with flowers.

kanzensakura: What a nice post! I too am a silver fox – at least I like to think so! My mother says, that after I wash my long hair,  blow it dry, and it is all full and glisten white that I look like one of those wild Japanese demons. So I’m sticking with silver fox.

seeker: Japanese demons have long black hair. Yes, kanzen silver fox, stick to this one!

kanzensakura: Some do have the long white hair. It’s crazy. I started getting white hair when I was 20.

seeker: You must be my long-lost sister! Me, too. Spent lots of dinero to stay blue-black and then I decided, enough. The rest is history.

kanzensakura: I was in hospital about 6 years ago for cancer treatment and surgery. I had started turning white-haired early and after a few dye sessions, I decided it was not worth the time or the money. My husband and mother freaked because when they came to the hospital room after I had been brought up from recovery room, my hair was white. I haven’t even thought about dyeing it.

seeker: Hope that the treatment is successful. Not worth it, kanzen. Why hide our singular beauty with false beauty?

kanzensakura: Praise God, I’m cancer free.

I am always amazed when I see people dye their hair, as if it will make them look 20 or 30 still. I know several Asian women in the church I attend who have their hair touched up without fail every month.

One was sick for a while. I saw her before she came to church after her illness and she had an inch of pure white grow-out. She had developed a skin condition and would not be able to have her hair dyed so she was not coming to church until her hair could be – a space of several months.

I smiled and asked her, do you think God doesn’t know what you really look like inside or out?

She looked at me harshly and frowned.

I told her why my hair was white and that I considered it a badge of honor proof that I had been saved from cancer and still had a job to do for God here on earth.

I asked her maybe God is touching you and reminding you, we are all made of dust and to start working for Him in our limited time?

Well, she stopped dyeing her hair. And to be truthful, she looked 20 years older, softer, and more approachable. She became part of a ministry to teenagers, powerful among them and often seems, to be the youngest among them.

seeker: What a wonderful testament. God works in wonderful ways. Love and Prayers to you and yours.

kanzensakura: Thank you

seeker: I am thinking of sharing your comments as testament on faith. Do you mind?

kanzensakura: Not at all because I know it is God, His grace and love that not only did I survive but what is most amazing, is the tumor that was the size of a tennis ball and lymph glands that were all infected prior to the surgery; when the MD went in, the tumor had shrunk and the lymph glands were clean.

My mother and husband said when he came to them after surgery, he was so amazed and kept thinking of scans and x-rays earlier.

They knew a miracle had occurred. I truly do praise God for His love for me.

seeker: God is good, all the time!

kanzensakura: Amen

” When a woman ceases to alter the fashion of her hair, you guess that she has passed the crisis of her experience.” Mary Hunter Austin   The Land of Little Rain,’The Basket Maker’.

“Now also when I am old and gray headed, O God, forsake me not; until I have shewed thy strength unto this generation, and thy power to every one that is to come.” Psalms 71:18

 

On the home front

 

strike2
When April comes, rest assure that it will be a bumpy ride.  Budget season falls in April and all school districts have to balance their books.  It’s never been easy to balance the books when the funds are coming from the Provincial Government.  When there is no funds; programs are cut, head rolls and the students suffer.

A particular program was under threat, Strings program, an instrumental music program that is an international language for all students.  One doesn’t have to speak their native tongue in order to be part of this and children have an ingrained talent to play a music instrument.

Needless to say, there were so many heartbroken teachers, parents and students. The sound of violin death score is playing in the air.

Some psychology and gifted-education program were also in the chopping board.  This is another very important program for students that are “challenged”.

The public has spoken to express their concerns about the effect of these cuts to their children.

Music aids the cognitive development of a child.  According to scientific study that exposure to music makes kids of all ages smarter in math especially classical music. The practice lessons are helpful for the students to have structured time rather than face time. Further musical training enhances the brain structure of the child in language and reasoning.

As for therapy sessions, parents need help how to educate a child with behavior, speech, attention deficit or high functioning. Without these vital resources, it’s impossible for the child to learn and fit into the norm of school structure.

The month of April is over and these services are spared for now. Problem solved?  Not really.

May is a power struggle between the Teachers and BC Public School Employers. The teachers are on a rotating strike this week and will continue until next week should there be no resolution in terms of bargaining on class sizes and remuneration.

Field trips, camping trips, sports practice and others are cancelled.  Graduation is coming and will the teachers be there for the graduating class?

Dear Parents,

As you are aware, the BCTF is now in phase 2 of job action, as well as an imposed partial lock-out by BCPSEA. This directly impacts the level in which teachers are able to be involved in field trips, including our regional track meet.

And while we exercised every reasonable option to carry on with this event, unfortunately, we have had to make the decision to cancel our District Zone Track and Field meet that was scheduled for May 30th. We realize this is very disappointing for the students who have been working very hard in their gym classes to qualify for the events at the Track meet as well as parents who enjoy being a part of the day.

We encourage the children to continue with their personal fitness training to support their future endeavors in track and field events.

This is a challenging time for all those involved in BC schools. Thank you for your understanding and support in this matter. Please contact the school if you have any questions.

Yours truly,

The Administrators 

On a personal level, Lucy my niece is in three of these events and she is really looking forward to it. It’s a very sad time for Lucy and my family.

My feelings are split between the teachers, education, children, parents, the whole British Columbia, my colleagues, and me. Of course, the bottom line for most is no ticky, no laundry. Meaning, no pay.

The children, have mercy on these children.  They are the one’s suffering.

Nelson Mandela said that education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world. Weapon?  Heaven forbid, not at the cost of the children.

Power Nap and Pwer Struggle: A Child uses a strike sign for shade while her mom walks a picket line outside school in Vancouver. Photo credit Darryl Dyck / The Canadian Press via Vancouver Metro

Power Nap and Pwer Struggle: A Child uses a strike sign for shade while her mom walks a picket line outside school in Vancouver. Photo credit Darryl Dyck / The Canadian Press via Vancouver Metro

I will live the present moment and fill it with love.

ucan
It is true. All prisoners, myself included, constantly wait to be let go. I decided then and there that my captivity would not be merely a time of resignation but a turning point in my life. I decided I would not wait. I would live the present moment and fill it with love. For if I wait, the things I wait for will never happen. The only thing that I can be sure of is that I am going to die.

No, I will not spend time waiting. I will live the present moment and fill it with love.

When the Communists put me in the hold of the boat, the Hai-Phong, along with 1500 other prisoners and moved us to the North, I said to myself, “Here is my cathedral, here are the people God has given me to care for, here is my mission: to ensure the presence of God among these, my despairing, miserable brothers. It is God’s will that I am here. I accept his will”.  And from that minute onwards, a new peace filled my heart and stayed with me for thirteen years.

The words of Bishop John Walsh, who had been imprisoned for 12 years in Communist China, Waiting in captivity.

I rise, I rise, I rise

maya

You may write me down in history
With your bitter, twisted lies,
You may tread me in the very dirt
But still, like dust, I’ll rise.

Does my sassiness upset you?
Why are you beset with gloom?
‘Cause I walk like I’ve got oil wells
Pumping in my living room.

Just like moons and like suns,
With the certainty of tides,
Just like hopes springing high,
Still I’ll rise.

Did you want to see me broken?
Bowed head and lowered eyes?
Shoulders falling down like teardrops.
Weakened by my soulful cries.

Does my haughtiness offend you?
Don’t you take it awful hard
‘Cause I laugh like I’ve got gold mines
Diggin’ in my own back yard.

You may shoot me with your words,
You may cut me with your eyes,
You may kill me with your hatefulness,
But still, like air, I’ll rise.

Does my sexiness upset you?
Does it come as a surprise
That I dance like I’ve got diamonds
At the meeting of my thighs?

Out of the huts of history’s shame
I rise
Up from a past that’s rooted in pain
I rise
I’m a black ocean, leaping and wide,
Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.
Leaving behind nights of terror and fear
I rise
Into a daybreak that’s wondrously clear
I rise
Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,
I am the dream and the hope of the slave.
I rise
I rise
I rise.

Maya Angelou
In Memory.  Via Parabola

The straw that breaks the camel’s back.

 

camel

An Indian guest laborer works with a camel at his Saudi employer’s farm. Saudi Arabia has urged its citizens and foreigners to wear masks and gloves when dealing with camels to avoid spreading MERS. PHOTOGRAPH BY FAYEZ NURELDINE, AFP/GETTY

MIKE, MIKE, MIKE, MIKE, MIKE! Guess what day it is! Guess what day it is!  And guess what Mike, Hump Days are numbered and I am sorry to be the bearer of bad news.

Focus on the Camels

Two years ago, the virus didn’t even have a name. A year ago it had infected roughly 50 people, half of whom died. Now, Middle East Respiratory Syndrome has been confirmed in more than 600 people, and killed nearly 30 percent of its victims.

by: Karen Weintraub for National Geographic PUBLISHED MAY 23, 2014

Source

“Filipinos die for love. Americans die for principle”

valerie

Click on the photo to take you to the original post.

This Memorial Day, I offer a tribute to the hundreds and thousands of Filipino Guerrillas who fought in World War II alongside the Americans. In a moving poem, General Romulo penned these words:

To the men who fought
In defense of the Philippines
In the 1941-1942 campaign
The ill-trained, ill-armed recruits
In straw helmets and rubbers shoes
The pilots without planes
The sailors without ships
The men on horseback
Fighting tanks with sabers
The gunners short of shells
The soldiers with obsolete rifles
Hungry in the foxholes of Bataan
And the batteries of Corregidor
Racked by dysentery, malaria, beriberi
Surviving on false hopes
Defeated at long last by their bodies
Sent to die in their faceless thousands
In the long cruel march to Capas
And in the concentration camps
This memorial is dedicated
By their grateful countrymen
Who will not forget
That their defeat was weakness of the flesh
But victory of faith loyalty and love.

~ Carlos P. Romulo

Half-American and half-Filipino, Panlilio wrote:  Filipinos will die for love, and Americans will die for principle.  I am half-and-half.  I die the same way.” 

excerpt from: Valerie Gonzalez  to read the original post visit : Dream to Learn

All Around Us.

bee at naramata

We don’t have to go far to find the treasure we are seeking.
There is beauty and goodness right where we are.
And only when we can see the beauty and goodness
that are close by can we recognize beauty and goodness
on our travels far and wide.

There are trees and flowers to enjoy, paintings and sculptures to admire;
most of all there are people who smile, play, and show kindness and gentleness.
They are all around us, to be recognized as free gifts to receive in gratitude.

Our temptation is to collect all the beauty and goodness
surrounding us as helpful information we can use for our projects.
But then we cannot enjoy it, and we soon find that
we need a vacation to restore ourselves.

Let’s try to see the beauty and goodness in front of us
before we go elsewhere to look for it.

by: Henri Nouwen

A little girl’s letter to Einstein: Do scientists pray?

einstein
The Riverside Church

January 19, 1936

My dear Dr. Einstein,

We have brought up the question: Do scientists pray? in our Sunday school class. It began by asking whether we could believe in both science and religion. We are writing to scientists and other important men, to try and have our own question answered.

We will feel greatly honored if you will answer our question: Do scientists pray, and what do they pray for?

We are in the sixth grade, Miss Ellis’s class.

Respectfully yours,

Phyllis

***************************************************************************************************

January 24, 1936

Dear Phyllis,

I will attempt to reply to your question as simply as I can. Here is my answer:

Scientists believe that every occurrence, including the affairs of human beings, is due to the laws of nature. Therefore a scientist cannot be inclined to believe that the course of events can be influenced by prayer, that is, by a supernaturally manifested wish.

However, we must concede that our actual knowledge of these forces is imperfect, so that in the end the belief in the existence of a final, ultimate spirit rests on a kind of faith. Such belief remains widespread even with the current achievements in science.

But also, everyone who is seriously involved in the pursuit of science becomes convinced that some spirit is manifest in the laws of the universe, one that is vastly superior to that of man. In this way the pursuit of science leads to a religious feeling of a special sort, which is surely quite different from the religiosity of someone more naive.

With cordial greetings,

your A. Einstein

 

source: brain pickings

Understanding the Work of Art

artist5

“Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up.”  ― Pablo Picasso

An artist brought the Social Studies curriculum to life by reading a variety of legends and showed her own collection of Aboriginal masks to the Grade 4/5 students. She modelled building the mask using poster board,  paper mâché, glue, rice paper and paint to decorate the mask.

As the students learn the Aboriginal culture and create their own Aboriginal masks, they make the subject come alive through their own creativity. The project also helps stimulate an interest in other cultures that enriches the students. Art projects give students the opportunity to embrace self-discovery and to make meaning from the world around them.

Presumed Heterosexual

Look at it at the point of view when a child is born.  

May 17there’s no place for the state in the bedrooms of the nation.“ ~ Pierre Elliot Trudeau

“There’s no place for the state in the bedrooms of the nation.” Those unforgettable words made famous by Pierre Trudeau in 1967 caused a tidal wave of controversy that rippled across the entire nation. Trudeau’s Omnibus Bill brought issues like abortion, homosexuality and divorce law to the forefront for the first time, changing the political and social landscape in Canada forever.”

Awareness day: May 17 is National Day Against Homophobia.

Public school system in British Columbia is gradually adopting a strict policy on anti-homophobia in order to create a safe structured learning environment for the children and it’s employees. 

These posters are educational materials used in an ongoing staff development that I attended.

Do you know that homophobia is one of the major causes of drugs, alcoholism and suicide on children?  So think twice or more before acting negatively, it can have a devastating effect.

Two is better than none

poster two

I love
My two dads
I love
My two moms

Love!

Imagine that these are adopted
children  and brought into
a loving home. They were given
food, shelter, education,
plenty of love to be had and
grew up happily.  The only difference
is that their parents are in the same
sex relationship.
Moms, Dads, daughter, son.

Diversity!

Imagine that these two children have no
parents, unwanted, grew up on the street
and became a statistics.

Imagine!

“Heterosexism refers to the assumption that
all people are heterosexual and that
heterosexuality is superior and more
desirable than homosexuality.”

“Homophobia is the irrational fear and hatred
of homosexuals.  Both of these are
perpetuated by negative stereotypes and are
dangerous to people and communities.”

Definition!

 

Re-run

Video

I love watching this movie over and over again.  It is such a pleasure to listen to her songs and I sing along with her.  I used to feel guilty because speaking French with Filipino accent just doesn’t cut it.  Now with the wrap music going on, it really doesn’t matter how I sing as long as it’s the song from La Vie en Rose.

Pretty soon I will be able to speak french.  Oui?  Merci.

Diversity: A whole new world

pride week

Differences including our abilities, appearance, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity, race, colour, creed, ancestry, religion, physically challenge and mental faculty make each us unique and the world more interesting.

Sex and Gender is a bit confusing for me.  These are the words I learnt at the school level:

Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender, Transvestite, Transsexual, Two-Spirit, Homosexual, Heterosexual, Straight, Heterosexism, Homophobia, Genderism, Sexual Orientation, Gender, Identity,  Queer.

Working as a public servant, it is vital to accept people for what they are especially when children are involve and are in the process of self-discovery of their sexual orientation.  Be respectful.

It’s not an easy topic for most people to discuss.  I have no problem discussing it but I have to be mindful of other’s that are uncomfortable about this issue. Be sensitive.

It’s a different culture. Be tolerant.

One thing I find offensive is when young ones use derogatory remarks.  Children are more prone to voicing it out because they have a little understanding. It’s just a matter of educating the children.  Guide them.

They are humans, too, just like me. They have human needs.  Be a friend.

A Purple Day

Image

Think purple, Wear purple. It’s a purple kind of day.
purple

I promised  kanzen sakura that I will wear purple today to spread the word posted by greeneyedchess.  

May 12 is Fibromyalgia Awareness Day. Please wear purple to create awareness and help find a cure.

And to lighten up a heavy topic, humour is the best medicine.

10 best things about Fibromyalgia

  1. I save money on magazines. With brain fog, I can’t remember what I just read!
  2. I am a cheap date. No alcohol, no dessert and I still feel drunk or hung over.
  3. On ‘good day’s I feel wonderful. Other people need a much better day to feel that way.
  4. I am easy to find…I’m either at the Dr’s office or at home.
  5. I never have to make my bed because I’ll probably be right back in it.
  6. I have acquired a great lounging/sleeping wardrobe. I rarely get dressed as nobody ever sees me.
  7. Disequilibrium saves money on amusement parks. I get the same sensations every time I stand up!
  8. I feel smarter than my Doctors…all they say is ‘I don’t know’
  9. With short-term memory impairment I can hide my own Easter eggs and Christmas presents.
  10. I don’t know what happened to No. 10 as posted to this source:  fibrorelief

Mother’s Day: Then and Now

“Mother’s Day is a personal, family and memorial day. It’s a celebration for sons and daughters; a thank offering for the blessings of good homes.

Anna Jarvis“Make Mother’s Day a family day of reunions, messages to the absent and the spirit of good will to all. It is a constructive movement emphasising the home as the highest inspiration of our individual and national lives. Mother’s Day is a day of sentiment — not sentimentality; a day for everybody, but is well named Mother’s Day, for where better can sentiment start?,”

Jarvis told the Miami Daily News in a heated interview in 1924 to make a stand defending Mother’s Day against turning it into a “hallmark” occasion.

If you hate the commercialism of Mother’s Day, then you’re not alone — in fact, you have the ideal person in your corner.

Anna Jarvis, the founder of Mother’s Day, hated it too.

The American woman who single-handedly worked to make Mother’s Day a national holiday was reportedly so disgusted to hear that a department store was having a Mother’s Day sale that she threw her lunch on the floor. Jarvis then dedicated her life to disbanding the day she spent six years campaigning Congress for.

Jarvis’ original intention was that Mother’s Day would be a day to honor the sacrifices women made for their families.

And to add, a comment  from Mr. T.  of  SpeakListenPrayDon’tBeS …

Links:
Anna Jarvis ~ Founder of Mother’s Day
Image source

Mother Less Child

life

It’s Mother’s Day. I don’t feel like celebrating, not because my Mother has long since gone, not because I do not have children, but because of mother less child.

Every Friday, on the way home, at a corner street, I see a group of people with a baby stroller with no baby in it. Instead pictures of a baby inside of a womb occupies the stroller.  Out of curiosity, I asked  what is the purpose of their presence and jokingly asked where the real baby is?

“We are here to educate people.”

“About what? “

“Abortion.”

“Abortion? Why here?”

“See that building across the street?  Above that bank is an abortion clinic.”

It was shocking for me to hear that an abortion clinic existed in this area.

“We are standing outside the bubble zone.  By law, we are not allowed to protest in front of the building.”

We discussed about abortion for a good half hour while pedestrians passed by in a hurry to catch the bus or the train.  I walked away thinking which one of these women that just passed us by just walked out of the building  after an abortion.  I cannot tell.

“See those men on the other side of the street?  They are with us as well.  They are there to pray for the women and the aborted babies.”

“I will keep your group in my prayers as well as those women and the dead babies.” And I bid farewell.

With this whole incident, I reflected the life of Mother Mary who had an immaculate conception.  This is more of what if situation.

  • What if Mother Mary aborted the miraculous conception?
  • If she did abort the child, then there would be no Jesus Christ.
  • If there is no Jesus Christ, then there is no Christianity.
  • If there is no Christianity, then there would have no reverence for life.

I am thankful that Mother Mary said YES.

 

Prayer for Reverence for Life

Almighty God, giver of all that is good, we thank You for the precious gift of human life:
For life in the womb, coming from your creative power,
For the life of children, making us glad with their freshness and promise,
For the life of young people, hoping for a better world,
For the life of people who are disabled, teaching us that every life has value,
For the life of the elderly, witnessing to the ageless values of patience and wisdom.

Like Blessed Mary, may we always say “YES” to Your gift. May we defend it and promote it from conception to its natural end. And bring us at last, O Father, to the fullness of eternal life in Jesus Christ, our Lord.

Say it with flowers

Joanne

What a beautiful thing, a bouquet of tulips for me.  Thank you.

Knowing that Mum, how much longer will be in town for a couple of days in Vancouver waiting for the cruise ship to take her and her family to Alaska, I immediately said: Coffee is on me!  The last time she was here, we didn’t even know that we were in the same place when there was free hugs for hunger.

When meeting someone for the first time, we gave each other a clue so we can find one another.

Mum said that she will be the person with two heavy bags under her eyes on the hotel lobby waiting. Me, I will be that silver fox with  long hair. Well, I did not see any woman with heavy bags.  Mum found me first.  It’s so easy to spot a long silver hair but not the fox. Who am I kidding.

It was a real pleasure to meet a blogger in person.

We chatted animatedly as if we were long-lost friend over coffee and dinner by the Waterfront of Vancouver.  Thank goodness, the weather cooperated and not a drop of precipitation.

Mum and family must be in the middle of the ocean by now and have passed the narrow inside passage of Vancouver Island.

Thank you again for the flowers, Mum, and for taking the time to meet with me.  Safe journey.

Missing the fun – the only true tragedy.

More than just a character, Holy Molé is a cartoon that represents the place where higher aspirations of existence intertwine with the practicality of everyday living. The two main characters represent this dichotomy and, through their friendship, they find a balance that is essential and love that is enduring. The cartoon is not intended to be religious; rather it represents the archetypical seeker in society striving for meaning in an often-complex world.
hole mole

Hole Mole  reminds us not to take the drama too seriously, or else we may miss the fun – the only true tragedy.

 

Source: Holy Molé Cartoon

 

 

I am not alone

alone

Right now,
there are people all over the world
who are just like you.

They’re lonely.
They’re missing somebody.
They’re in love with someone
they probably shouldn’t be in love with.

They have secrets you wouldn’t believe.
They wish and they dream and they hope,
and they look out the window whenever they’re
in the car or on a bus or a train and they watch people
on the streets and wonder what they’ve been through.
They wonder if there are people out there like them.

They’re like you,
and you could tell them everything
and they would understand.

And right now,
they’re sitting here reading these words,
and I’m writing this for you
so you don’t feel alone anymore.

Source: Lessons Learned In Life

Leave your “i” behind.

Canada’s renowned scientist David Suzuki received an Award for Science from the U.S. National Wildlife Federation DrSuzuki-computerSmcalling him “one of our strongest allies north of the border.” 

“Our highest priorities must be the air we breathe, the water we drink, the soil that provides food and the biodiversity that keeps us alive and healthy.”   – Dr. David Suzuki

He is also a nature enthusiast that makes use realize that nature is good for all of us. It’s a known fact that we benefit by spending more time outdoors than spending more face time. I can attest to that.

Being at work 7 hours a day in front of the computer contributes very little for my well-being.  The minute I take coffee and lunch breaks that means green time for me. A walk around the block can depressurized me and calms me down.  Spending time in nature reduces the negative results of automatic thoughts and redirects my mind to being playful and extrovert.

This is plain science and all I need is me as the guinea pig.

For the month of May, David Suzuki launched the 30 x 30 Nature challenge by spending 30 minutes in nature for 30 days. That is doable.  I extend this challenge whoever reads this wherever you are in planet earth.  This is not limited to Canadians.

So I say to you, get off your butt, walk away from the computer, go outside, breath and relax.  Not to mention, unplug yourself from any gadgets and open your ears to the sound around you.  Leave your “I” behind. No iPhone, iPod or iPad.  Can you do that?

Then come back and tell me what you did in 30 minutes and how it fells. See that space below for comment?  That is for you.

Dressing up according to Lucy.

When a little girl plays dress up, she means business.  She can’t wait to grow up and will adorn herself using her Mother’s accessories including the Boa feather and hat. Doesn’t she look adorable?
lucy 1There is no way she will change her outfit with all the cajoling and threats from her Mother. Besides, she is smarter than her.
lucy 2

“God is not satisfied with appearance. God wants the garment of justice. God wants his Christians dressed in love.”-Oscar Romero  (via Claudia)
lucy 3

Sakura for Jae

Here’s something to look forward to when you visit Canada in spring.  I kid you not, Sakura is all over the place in Canada.

This is just one tree.  Imagine walking underneath the boulevard all lined up with Sakura, it’s snowing pink petals.
sakura jae

“What a strange thing!
to be alive
beneath cherry blossoms.” 
― Kobayashi IssaPoems

This is nothing in comparison to my fascination with this yellow flower when I first arrived here in Canada. I just love these Lions of the Spring. One cannot appreciate the beauty of Cherry blossoms without having to fall for these beast.
Lions of the Spring

 

Weekly Photo Challenge: Spring.

Spring Cleaning

I heard the faint song of the chickadee. It was the female bird looking very pregnant ready to give birth. She was calling for her mate and he eventually came. Being a male, he took his time in responding to her call.

They are back to nest.spring cleaning

He came to check the house. He turned his tail this way, that way, poked his head inside the hole, tapped the wood, turned some more, moved on top of the house, moved down again on the perch.  He was taking forever checking out the house and then he flew away. The female bird was left behind.

Now what! Where on earth did he go? Is he abandoning his future family? What a philandering bird, I thought.

She looked confused. I think I was more confused than the bird and wondered how come he did not go inside the house?  She looked so sad. Not her, it’s me that was sad because she flew away as well.

I went out to check the bird house. The old nest was still in there and I don’t see anything nor do I hear anything  unusual inside.

Maybe there’s something else other than the old nest. Maybe they don’t like a dirty house. Too man maybe going in my mind and it was actually a simple forgetfulness of doing spring cleaning.

So I cleaned up the house and found out a queen bee inside with a lone slave. Can’t let the queen bee procreate and produce a million minions living in my balcony. Therefore, I let her go and she flew away as fast as she could.

The birds did not return.  I will just have to wait for next spring and hopefully remember to do spring cleaning.

“Letting go isn’t the end of the world; it’s the beginning of a new life.” ~Unknown

Composed by the birds

Video

Birds on the wires

I would have never thought that these crows can compose a musical score. Through a mere curiosity, this video is created. Just brilliant.

“Reading a newspaper, I saw a picture of birds on the electric wires. I cut out the photo and decided to make a song, using the exact location of the birds as notes (no Photoshop edit). I knew it wasn’t the most original idea in the universe. I was just curious to hear what melody the birds were creating.

I sent the music to the photographer, Paulo Pinto, who I Googled on the internet. He told his editor, who told a reporter and the story ended up as an interview in the very same newspaper.

Here I’ve posted a short video made with the photo, the music and the score.”

Also check my live presentation of Birds on the Wires at TEDx São Paulo: tedxsaopaulo.com.br/jarbas-agnelli/

The Saga of Eggs

Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall,
Humpty Dumpty had a great fall;
All the king’s horses and all the king’s men
Couldn’t put Humpty together again.
humpy dumpy

This is a continuing saga of eggs posted here, here and here.

“Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall,” BY MOTHER GOOSE
Source: The Dorling Kindersley Book of Nursery Rhymes (2000) via Poetry Foundation
Image: The New Yorker

May Day

scream

Can you hear me scream?
Can you hear them scream?
Can you hear the whole Canada scream?

It’s tax time.
It’s time to cram and fill in the forms.
It’s time to file personal income tax return.

I’ve lost my tax receipt?
How fast can you provide a duplicate?
What do you mean it takes that long?

Have a heart so it won’t bleed.

Revenue Canada was hit by bleeding heart.
For five days the system was down to protect us.
We still have five more days to file our return.

Relax and stop screaming.

P.S.
I think I’ll apply for a one way ticket to Mars.
Mars is starting to look good the way taxes are soaring.
The amount of taxes I paid to the government is enough
to pay for two cats to keep me company in the red planet.

Photo Credit: Thank you, Carl D’Agostino

Memorabilia: Just Listen

This is a photo of a  quote taped on a friend’s favorite spot, her desk.

We read it so many times, make up meanings and meanings change depending in our moods.  For most time we make fun out of it.

Just listen

An ant goes round and round without
rest
Like all beings in the six realms of
existence,
Born here and dying there without
release,
Now becoming a hungry ghost, then
an animal.
If you are searching for freedom from
this suffering
You must hear the sound of one hand.

These are still resonant words.
Take a break from the clamorous rat
race of modern life.

Just listen.

She was searching for freedom from suffering is the focal point of this quote.  Freedom means death.  And we both just listened for it to come.  And it did come for her and I did not hear it coming.

What is the sound of one hand clapping?  Well, it’s actually a sign for the deaf.  You raise your hand or hands and start shaking them up in the air.  This is how the deaf clap their hands. No sound.

Writing to Save the Day

ReadingWriting can be a true spiritual discipline. Writing can help us to concentrate, to get in touch with the deeper stirrings of our hearts, to clarify our minds, to process confusing emotions, to reflect on our experiences, to give artistic expression to what we are living, and to store significant events in our memories. Writing can also be good for others who might read what we write.

Quite often a difficult, painful, or frustrating day can be “redeemed” by writing about it. By writing we can claim what we have lived and thus integrate it more fully into our journeys. Then writing can become life saving for us and sometimes for others too.


– Henri J. M. Nouwen 

The Big Message of an Egg

This is no ordinary breakfast.

As you can see
how sorrowful the rest of the eggs are.

Sunny side up or
Over easy.

Sustenance
Food for the soul.

Cheer up!

The big message:
that there is something essential
that you only know by dying
to who you think you are!

You really don’t know
what life is
until you know
what death is.

” Death and life are two sides of one coin, and you cannot have one without the other.”  Transformative Dying

Image source: Julia Quinn