Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Joshua Bell

Violinist, Joshua Bell, playing in the Washington D.C. Metro Station on a January morning in 2007. This social experiment on people's perception, taste, and priorities was organized by the Washington Post.

If we do not have a moment to stop and listen to one of the best musicians in the world, playing some of the finest music ever written, with one of the most beautiful instruments ever made... how many other things are we missing?

Monday, September 28, 2009

banned book week

In Honor of Banned Book Week
a poem by Ellen Hopkins

To you zealots and bigots and false
patriots who live in fear of discourse.
You screamers and banners and burners
who would force books
off shelves in your brand name
of greater good.

You say you're afraid for children,
innocents ripe for corruption
by perversion or sorcery on the page.
But sticks and stones do break
bones, and ignorance is no armor.
You do not speak for me,
and will not deny my kids magic
in favor of miracles.

You say you're afraid for America,
the red, white and blue corroded
by terrorists, socialists, the sexually
confused. But we are a vast quilt
of patchwork cultures and multi-gendered
identities. You cannot speak for those
whose ancestors braved
different seas.

You say you're afraid for God,
the living word eroded by Muhammed
and Darwin and Magdalene.
But the omnipotent sculptor of heaven
and earth designed intelligence.
Surely you dare not speak
for the father, who opens
his arms to all.

A word to the unwise.
Torch every book.
Char every page.
Burn every word to ash.
Ideas are incombustible.
And therein lies your real fear.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Happy Anniversary

In Honor of our Anniversary...
friendly tips I've been given for a happy relationship:

  • A super important tip: Make your relationship a priority, especially when you have a family. What your kids need most is to be loved by parents who are happy and productive participants in the world.

  • Find small ways to lighten the other's load. Small tokens of unsolicited support make a big impact - say, 'I love you, I'm proud of you, I think you're doing a great job.' At the end of the day, isn't that all we want to hear anyway?

  • Take a mini-moon. Frequently. Mini-moons are little honeymoons. Find a babysitter and spend a weekend away. Visit a city you've never been to before, check out that B&B you saw online, drive to the next town up the road and pretend you're far from home. It needn't be expensive or elaborate, just a few days to refocus and reconnect.

  • A cup of hot tea in bed is the secret to a happy marriage. (hot tea in bed is the secret to a happy anything actually.)

Intention Friday

Set your intention for the weekend.

My intent is to allow people freedom from my judgement.
I intend to "give people a pass".
This weekend I've got a "pocket full of passes".

Who am I to judge?
Who knows how much pain their unconscious behaviors cause them?

What's your intention this weekend?

Thursday, September 24, 2009

internet acts of kindness

Feeling like the world is becoming less friendly? Social theorist Jonathan Zittrain begs to difffer. The Internet, he suggests, is made up of millions of acts of kindness, curiosity and trust.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Another Boat

I just returned from a wonderful family trip to Disneyland ... and I learned something interesting while I was there:

The kids and I were heading to the dock to ride the paddleboat one day. We were hurrying because we were afraid that we were going to miss the boat. When we arrived at the dock we found that we had, in fact, missed the boat. The kids were disappointed. But the Disney Guide said to them, "Don't be disappointed; there's always another boat. And if you miss that boat, there will be another boat. And if you miss that boat too, guess what there will be?" And the kids cried out, "Another boat!" Again the guide said, "And after that?" Cheerfully the kids yelled, "Another boat!"

'Another Boat' became our mantra for the week's vacation.

If you've ever felt that you've missed your chance, or if you've ever thought that opportunity has passed you by ... just remember another boat, another boat, another boat. The Universe has boats lined up for you. It's a steady stream ... and it doesn't matter how many you've missed up to now because: there's always another boat!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Friday, September 18, 2009

Intention Friday

Set your intention for the weekend.

My intent is to see a "problem" as a possibility for change.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009


Adults behaving badly.
First it was Joe Wilson, then Serena Williams, then Kanye West. It seemed as if civility was dead. But then I realized I was focusing on the negative.
A week's worth of bad behavior allowed me to see the grace all around me. I began to notice the compassion and good manners of others.
If we're able to learn anything this week, it's how gracious President Obama, Kim Clisters, Taylor Swift, and Beyonce Knowles handled the negative behavior of others.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Monday, September 14, 2009

Zack Arias


end slavery

The US Department of Labor at the urging of has released their long awaited list of goods produced by child labor and forced labor.

Here are some of the worst offenders for forced labor or slavery specifically:
  • Bolivia: nuts, cattle, corn, and sugar
  • Burma: bamboo, beans, bricks, jade, nuts, rice rubber, rubies, sesame, shrimp, sugarcane, sunflowers, and teak
  • China: artificial flowers, bricks, Christmas decorations, coal, cotton, electronics, garments, footwear, fireworks, nails, and toys
  • India: bricks, carpets, cottonseed, textiles, and garments
  • Nepal: bricks, carpets, textiles, and stones
  • North Korea: bricks, cement, coal, gold, iron, and textiles
  • Pakistan: bricks, carpet, coal, cotton, sugar, and wheat
Check out the article HERE
Check out the DOL Report in its entirety HERE

Write a quick note of thanks to the DOL at the address below and thank them for allowing you access to the information to choose slave-free products.

U.S. Department of Labor
200 Constitution Ave., NW
Washington, DC 20210

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Love's Great Light

Love's Great Light
It's like sunshine on your face; it calls you toward it.
This is the direction I am walking.
In Love there is hope.

Love's Great Light
It is so vast, you can't but see it.
This is where grace resides.
In Love there is peace.

Put down the phone. Turn off the television. Pet the dog. See your children playing.
Hear the need around you? The dog, the children, the husband...
Give willingly and just like that, the world is better.
Start where you are.
Love's Great Light

Friday, September 11, 2009

Intention Friday

It's September 11th.
Set your intention for the weekend.

My intent is to meet hate with love.

What's yours?

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Health Care

I choose to shape the future, not fear it.

Obama at School

Our conversation while driving my two children home from school on Tuesday:

V - We saw President Obama's speech today at school.
Me- Really? What did you think?
V - I'm wondering what I'm going to do to help our country.
H - (Proudly) I'm going to have a Fish Pet Shop when I grow up.
V -That doesn't help the country.
H -Yes it does! Because... (pause) I'm also going to teach classes at the Fish Pet Shop about fish and the ocean...
V -(interrupting) Well, I'm going to invent something... like a car that runs on bubbles! When the bubbles pop they give energy for the car to go. Or a car that runs on jelly beans (laughter)... or a car that runs on... (wait for it)... poop (hysterical laughter).

I know once a conversation heads to bathroom humor, it's over. But I thought they had some good ideas.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

To America's Students

"So today, I want to ask you, what's your contribution going to be? What problems are you going to solve? What discoveries will you make? What will a president who comes here in twenty or fifty or one hundred years say about what all of you did for this country?"
-President Barack Obama

Post-it Tuesday

Monday, September 7, 2009

Sept 11

On this coming
Friday, September 11th, 2009,
let's make an effort to display an American flag outside every home, apartment, office, and store in the United States.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Intention Friday

Set your intention for the weekend.

My intent is to be mindful of the words I say and understand how they affect the message I am delivering.

What's yours?

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

remembering a father

I can't but cry at the story of a 12 year old boy, a cancer survivor, unable to climb an icy hill...
To be that advocate for our children is something we can all aspire to do.
"I know you can do it. There is nothing that you can't do."
Even our profound losses are survivable. Nothing is impossible. Persevere.
Teddy Jr.'s speech was inspiring, it left me thinking about how I can be a better parent, spouse, friend, citizen.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Post-it Tuesday

As tempted more; more able to endure,

As more exposed to suffering and distress;

Thence, also, more alive to tenderness.