The Basil Plant

As mentioned in my previous post, the seasons are changing and some of my favorite things will go away till Spring. I’ve killed two Basil plants this year, but that didn’t deter me from buying one more. I’m not quite ready to let go and not make pesto.

Almost every market I’ve walked into has them in stock. One store had so many basil plants, they were on display like Poinsettias at Christmas. Why not buy one more Barb?

I told myself I’d bring one home, and if it was still alive after a week, I’d repot it into a larger container. The plastic container it was sold in has three holes in the bottom for drainage. I wanted to sit it in the kitchen window to receive some light, but I learned early on that wood and water don’t mix. The window sill is wood, so I found this little dish to sit under it.

Home from the market.

I sat it in that little dish up in the kitchen window for a week and it’s still alive. I thought it couldn’t hurt to sit it in love, love, love.

Here is what I’ve learned from the basil plant.

🤍 Don’t water it at night. Even though it’s more convenient to water it before bed, it doesn’t like sitting in damp darkness.

🤍 Just let it be. I see it first thing in the morning as I walk into the kitchen and it’s still alive! I realize it’s almost out of season and it’s slow growing, but at least it hasn’t died and that’s rewarding.

🤍 It reminds me to be kind always. It looks rather fragile and my persona shifts when I see it. It has new growth, but should be nervous for the day I plop the food processor on the counter.

10 days later. It hasn’t grown much, but it’s alive.

Maybe it just knows to move at a slower pace and enjoy where it is. Plants are a lot like humans, and we can learn from them, as this little plant reminds me to be kind and relax my mind.

The photo reveals I repotted it, slid the love, love, love dish underneath and sat it on the window sill. We would all be content sitting in a dish of repeated love, just like the basil plant.

To Stay Stopped

I had a surprise visit from a neighbor.

I was vacuuming up dog hair and didn’t hear the knock on the door at first. I opened it to find my friend and her young son standing on the porch. Her little boy was holding a giant chocolate bar. He raised it up toward me as if to say, “For Barb.”

I love that my friend is teaching her son to give females chocolate at a young age. He’ll be thankful for that later on.

I posted this on Letitgocoach Facebook page this morning and have already changed my mind about it.

getwhatyougive

We are called to love on people.

It’s good to show them everyday, but I recently started spending time with this little boy. When I see him, I lift him up in my arms and love on him. Just holding him and listening to him talk, shows him Barb loves him.

Eventually, he wiggles out of my arms and goes to his Mom because she has always been there for him. It’s not the amount of love we give someone, it’s just that we give. Similar to other things in life, once we stop, it’s easier to stay stopped.

Unleash Some Inspiration

I gave my Gmail a deep cleaning.

Once I took care of the pile of email, I saw 12 Blog posts ideas sitting there.

You see my darling, I write from the heart. When I feel inspiration come from within, I take the appropriate pictures, or download the meme and send it to myself.

They sit and wait to be used. Some emails have a title, but the title is subject to change while typing. The one I’m posting today has been waiting a long time.

When you write from the heart, there is no schedule. My heart is full and when it overflows you see a post daily. While the heart takes a rest, you won’t see a post.

I also text ideas to myself, but that list is shorter than what’s sitting in email. I have about half a dozen ideas on text and they are more recent. When you over 50 and become inspired, you write it down, or soon forget!

Then there’s the ‘not forgetting’ you wrote something down in a moment of inspiration. Hence the emails and texts to myself. 🙂

The beginning is where we’ll start.

This meme inspired me on January 9, 2019. Let’s unleash some inspiration.

inspiration

In the Bag

As I walked by the boutique window I saw this bag sitting atop a shelf. It was so simple yet magical. I felt that familiar shift of perspective.

Would it affect others similarly?

I walked in and purchased the bag.

It sits on top of the fridge as a dual reminder. One, for what it says, and two, to take it with me when I walk out the door. Some of the nearby grocery stores don’t provide bags for your purchases and suggest you bring your own. They sell reusable grocery bags, but nothing like this one.

When it’s time to bag my purchases, I’m asked, “Do you need a bag?” I sit this one down for them to use and be inspired. They pause a moment to take it all in and a smile usually follows.

bag

Anything is possible. It’s in the bag. ❤

Let them Unload

Listening is an act of kindness.

Sometimes my acts of kindness are intentional. I really have to stop and think, “What can I do today to extend kindness?” Who knew it takes thought!?

I was out running errands yesterday, and I felt led to stop by the pizza place. I knew Boss man would be there alone preparing for another day of business, but I also knew, he’s had a rough week.

I walked in and found him sitting at a table.

I sat down beside him, touched his arm and asked, “How’s your heartbeat? Tell me about your week.”

That’s all it took for the floodgates to open.

heart

I just sat and listened.

I didn’t offer my opinion or any advice. I gently touched his arm when he shared something painful, just to reassure him of my presence.

Twenty minutes later, he was unburdened.

He began laughing and joking with me as he walked into the kitchen to get it ready for lunch. He was a little more free to enjoy this part of his day.

As I was leaving he thanked me for stopping by, but I didn’t really feel like I did anything. All I did was listen, but that’s all he needed. Let them unload.

To Be Kind

I’ve been reading about being kind.

That may sound silly, but I want to go beyond nice, and be consistently kind. We can be nice, but that can be turned on and off. To be kind is deciding to do more. To be thoughtful and give from our hearts.

A Side-step

I’m beginning to believe ‘goals’ are overrated. This thought is surprising considering I used to assist people in achieving their goals. That was my goal.

For 25 years I was goal driven, and climbed the ladder of what is called success, but I was miserable.

I let go of worldly success to go in search of heart-filled happiness. Goal complete.

Don’t expect any credit for being kind, but you might get caught in the act. You can read Matthew 6, and see what God says about doing good deeds.

They are to be done quietly and with no praise.

Caught in the Act

I was walking through a parking lot, making my way to a small Craft Fair. Walking by a row of parked cars, a gas cap to one of the cars was hanging open. I reached down, put the plug in, closed the small door, and continued walking.

While talking with one of the Artisans at the fair, I suddenly felt a tiny tap on my shoulder. Turning around I was faced with an elderly lady that was very excited! She said, “Thank you for closing our gas tank!” I had no idea anyone was in the car!

I smiled as I stood there a minute, caught completely off guard. Then hugged her tight and told her, “You are most welcome my lovely!”

Thank you for your time.

Pondering the upcoming year, I haven’t pulled out my journal to make a new list of goals. My heart is content replacing the word ‘goals’ with ‘intentions’.

Thank you *Donna for the inspiration to be consciously kind. You did this for a year, and I’m following your lead. Its an action to impact people’s lives. A good start is when we can decide to be kind.

*Donna Cameron. “A Year of Living Kindly.” 

That’s True Love

My daughter will be gone most of the day. She makes a Chemex, because she has it down to a science, whereas I do not. I sit in the den anticipating that magical cup of brew.

This morning she did something so special. She has this coffee cup she knows I love. It’s just the right size, and I use it when she’s not here.  When she is here, she usually uses the cup, but not this morning.

coffee2
Blue bottle coffee cup.

She sat the cup on my side of the table.

This was a special moment to receive this cup from her. It was a small gesture, and maybe to some go unnoticed.

The smallest of things create magical moments.

While she is out and about adulting, I began thinking what I could do for her. We have this inside joke now that she is almost 20 years old. I tell her she doesn’t need me nearly as much as she thinks she does, but there is this one thing she loves for me to do. Wash her sheets in perfume wash.

She’s jokingly asked if I will come and change her sheets the rest of my life. Well darling, maybe not every week, but when time allows, I will do that. It was 32 degrees this morning, so her favorite flannel sheets are being washed in perfume for her bed.

For me, it was getting to use her cup in her presence, but for her it will be these sheets.

That’s true love.

A Better Way To Live~Day 10

As you have probably noticed from previous Blogs…I love Steve Jobs. His life here on this earth was cut short, but oh what a legacy he left behind! Where would we be today without this guy? Probably not typing on this laptop.

Are you ready for Day 10? It’s a mind bender.

Beginning today, treat everyone you meet, friend or foe, loved one or stranger, as if they were going to be dead at midnight. Extend to each person, no matter how trivial the contact, all the care, kindness, understanding, and love that you can muster, and do it with no thought of any reward. Your life will never be the same again.

Recently, my daughter and I were at a local restaurant, and the waitress was a single Mom. She has three kids and is a little concerned about Christmas along with the power bill. She left our check laying on the table and our meal was $15. I paid for the meal, and my daughter leaves a $60 tip. We gathered up our belongings, hurried out the door and hopped into our truck before she could notice.

We do little things like that quite often, and enjoy helping others. Today’s rule challenges us to show action face to face, with no thought of any reward. To show a complete stranger all the goodness you can muster. This should make for a very interesting day!

I would love to hear how your life changed by changing someone else’s, and your thoughts around midnight.

 

Quote is from, “A Better Way to Live”, by Og Mandino

A Perfect Day

My daughter has a sign hanging on the wall in front of my desk that I get to read everyday. It simply says, “Today is a perfect day, for a perfect day”. This inspires me with its simplicity, and the fact that a 15-year-old found it true enough to purchase it. There is so much pain in the world today, I believe we’re in a season of giving. One of my favorite sayings is, “What we take for granted, someone else is praying for”.

You may be having a hard time yourself, and it seems you have nothing to give. That’s when we give of ourselves.

happy

I enjoy watching people’s faces as they walk through the airport. Their facial expressions tell a lot about who they are, especially women. When I was little and I made a mean face to my brother behind his back, Mama would say, “You better be careful or your face might freeze like that”. Maybe if I had spent my life making faces at my brother,  it would be true. I saw so many women at the airport this week, with a face of sadness, or an embedded frown. That tells me, they spent a lot of time with that look on their face, so now their face automatically relaxes into that position.  It’s sad.

So, I made a practice this week of everyone I saw walking toward me without a smile, I gave them one of mine. Everyone I encountered at the Airport, I was ‘over the top’ kind to them. Everyone I smiled at… smiled back. They gave me a look of hesitancy at first, and then there was a sign of relief, and happiness, just for a moment. Maybe that was the first time they had smiled all day. For some, it was the first time in years!

Luke 6:38 says, “Give, and you will receive. Your gift will return to you in full–pressed down, shaken together to make room for more, running over, and poured into your lap. The amount you give will determine the amount you get back.”

I encourage you today, if you think you don’t have anything to give, dust off your smile and kindness and give it away! It will come back to you.