Friday, July 26, 2013

Have a Wonderful Weekend!

You can see the shadow of the window screen on the paper ... and kitty fur.
 In this world you will have trouble.
But cheer up!
I have won the battle over the world.
John 16:33  NIRV

Here is something I am still sure of.
    I will see the Lord’s goodness
    while I’m still alive.
Psalm 27:13 NIRV

I plan to do a little writing in my "Road to Retirement" journal this weekend. It's huge! I'll probably never fill it, but that's OK.

We are having cooler weather with periodic rain. What a blessing!

Have a great weekend, and many thanks for visiting. May you be blessed!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Happy Intellectuals

My journal for my plans for retirement.
It says Lily Ashbury on the back.

I wonder if the term "Happy Intellectuals" is an oxymoron, at least for some of us. Sometimes it's very difficult for "great minds" to accept simple concepts at face value. Think Happy, Be Happy? Sadly, some of us are too willing to think ... and we think any hope for our happiness to its literal death.

Just think happy? Yes. A bare bones, simple way to happiness. It's almost an affront to some. I know it was to me. An intellectual's version of "... it is hard for a rich man ..."(Matthew 19:23 NKJV). We just don't want to lay our intellect(s) down:

Because to discover the secret to happiness requires great thought and analytical prowess, with theories constantly rejected, revised, and fine-tuned. Doesn't it? I once read the following about Mensa, the High IQ Society: "Mensans give great thought to the dumb things they do." I roared with laughter!

Think Happy, Be Happy. Do we get it? Because some of us won't. We'll hang onto our right to exercise our intellect, mulling over our unhappy condition- because surely the answer is there somewhere.

But ... but ... but ...  No, the answer is still Think Happy, Be Happy.

However, there is a small bone to throw to the intellectuals out there (and aren't we all?!) ... you might have to ponder a little (yea!) the best method for yourself to think (not be) happy. And you're right: It will take time and effort to develop the habit of thinking happy. But that in no way changes this truth: "I am thinking happy thoughts; therefore I am happy." (Don't think about the long-term. Happiness is built little by little upon an abundance of happy thoughts.)

Think Happy, Be Happy. If we can truly grasp this, it is life-changing.

Sketch I glued in front of journal.

As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he.
(Proverbs 23:7)

A cheerful heart is good medicine ...
(Proverbs 17:22)

Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!
(Philippians 4:4)

The real thing, other side!

May God bless you with an overflowing reservoir of happy thoughts.
PS: If desired, you can check out my sidebar to see the ways I've been using to develop my Think Happy habit (aka overcoming negative thoughts).

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Just a Glimpse of Light

I've been reading the "Mrs. 'Arris" books by Paul Gallico and enjoying them. (However, be warned there is a bit of very offensive, politically incorrect language in them. A shame because otherwise they are gems.) I liked the dedication for Mrs. 'Arris Goes to Paris (1958): To the gallant and indispensable daily ladies who, year in, year out, tidy up the British Isles, this book is lovingly dedicated.

I was also moved by this quote from Mrs. 'Arris Goes to New York (1960) by the Marquis Hypolite de Chassagne (French Ambassador to the US) as Ada and Mrs. Butterfield set sail to return to England: "If I had my way," he said, "I would rear a statue in a public square to women like that, for they are the true heroines of life. They do their duty day in, day out, they struggle against poverty, loneliness, and want, to preserve themselves and raise their families, but still they are able to laugh, to smile, to find time to indulge in dreams." The marquis paused, reflected a moment, sighed, and said, "And this is why I would rear them their statue, for the courage of these dreams of beauty and romance that still persist. And see," he said, "the wondrous result of such dreaming." (You can see my copying of the quote in one of my commonplace journals above, and the little decorated matchboxes make great storage for camera memory cards.)

My precious Sweetie
(who will rarely look at the camera).

Mrs. 'Arris (Ada Harris) likes her work, but for me it's a struggle. I still work full-time, and I admit I often find it draining. I so long to have more time to occupy myself with what is fulfilling to me.

I guess I'm like Onslow from Keeping Up Appearances, selling jewelry with Rose: "It's amazing how quickly the sheer inconvenience of work comes back to me."

Picture by Patrick Reid O'Brien, Courtesy MHS Licensing;
Made in USA by Dicksons.

But wait! Is that ... ? Could it possibly be? It is! A very faint glow from the light at the end of the tunnel!!!

Because one year from next month I will be applying for my Social Security. And I've decided I'm going to enjoy my long countdown (15 months) to retirement almost as much as the real thing when it arrives! (OK, it might just be semi-retirement, but still ... !) I'll be doing a bit of my own indulging in dreaming, so check back with me from time to time to see how I'm preparing for the big day.

I so appreciate those of you who have my blog on your blogroll or have linked to or mentioned my blog. "That's the nicest thing that anyone's ever done for me." :O)  Thank you very much for your kind gestures. And my heartfelt thanks to each and every one of you out there who just drop by!

Sorry for the dark photos ... they were taken out of desperation on the spur of the moment, and the curtains were shut to keep out the heat.

Still trying to get in some extra R&R (and reading), but I'll have more when the urge hits if not before! Until then, keep on soaking up these glorious summer days!

Off to read more of Mrs. 'Arris Goes to Parliament. Many blessings to you and yours,