Archive for the ‘In the Neighborhood’ Category

Practice Makes Perfect

May 21st, 2017

Who else loves the sound of gibson acoustic guitar at guitarcenter.com? I spent some time a few nights ago listening to my neighbor play, and I have to say- he has made some massive improvements compared to the first days of their band coming together. I still haven’t got used to the late night practice once a month, which keeps some of us awake until at least one am, but since he always lets us know ahead of time- I really can’t complain. I make sure to turn the fan on high, which does help. I love seeing him thrive in his environment and continue to get better and better with each passing month.

Being Neighborly

April 21st, 2017

I think I’ve mentioned it here before, but I often accept packages for my musician (and other) neighbor when no one is at home- and they happen to be able to catch me at home. Yesterday I was walking in from an appointment and they snagged me to ask if I would accept a package. I knew my neighbor was out of town, but he had told me that he was expecting a http://www.musiciansfriend.com/pro-audio/adam-audio-a7x-powered-studio-monitor and asked if I would be willing to accept it if he arrived while he was away. Since they travel a lot, they have also given us a key to water their plants and so forth when they are away- so last night I sent him a message and let him know what had arrived- and told him that I’d put it in the house since I knew we would miss each other this weekend- as I’ll be out of town and he is coming back into town. He was thrilled- and grateful but I call it the neighborly thing to do.

Early Christmas for Someone

December 10th, 2016

This morning while I was out walking the dog, I noticed a box out by the bulk trash for a martin parlor guitar. I couldn’t help but smile, as I knew immediately that it meant our neighbor (who is in a band and whom I’ve mentioned here before), must have received one for Christmas as a gift. I suspect that if that’s the case we will be hearing the contents of said box this weekend sometime.. unless he actually put it under the tree, which is doubtful. I know his band is supposed to be playing at a local Christmas festival tonight, so maybe he’s there testing it out now. Either way, I’m looking forward to hearing the sound. His passion for music never dissapoints.

On Choosing Love

November 20th, 2016

If you have regular contact with me in my everyday life-  then you know that I decided to take a break from Facebook, outside of my business page obligations.    I deleted the app from my phone, the one place where I spent wasted the most time reading and connecting with people.   Leading up to the election, I had a love / hate relationship with Facebook.  More accurately, I had a love/ hate relationship with the thoughts that would swirl in my head after reading various Facebook posts from people I care about, many of which I have loved and admired for a majority of my life.    It’s not Facebook’s fault, nor is it anyone else’s fault how “I” react to the things I see, but I also knew when I was having emotional reactions to so many things I was reading, from people who really don’t know better-  I knew it was time to take a step away.

When I say they don’t know better, I don’t mean they are in any way, shape or form ignorant, uneducated or simple minded.   Nothing could be further from the truth.   At the same time, so many people seem to be drinking the fear Kool-Aid these days, and had forgotten how to give and show love and compassion to anyone who didn’t fit their ‘norm’ that I went into a deep sadness.    In fact, typing this brings tears to my eyes.

There are a LOT of things I see in life that I don’t agree with, but my opinions are based on how I view the world and how I believe.   Does it mean because I don’t agree that it’s ‘wrong’?   No, not at all.  It means it’s different.      I try to shine love in all that I do, to walk the talk, but because I’m human, I also sometimes fall short.    I dust myself off-  forgive myself and move forward.

You know what I struggle with the most?   The fact that so many of us have become judge, jury and executioner over the choices of others.    We don’t have to agree to show respect.   We can agree to disagree and respect each others choices and move on.

I remember when I was in Junior High learning about how as a society the more we are exposed to-  the more it becomes the ‘norm’ and the less it matters because we become desensitized to those ‘things’.   At the time-  I remember understanding it, but having never experienced that desensitization first hand, I didn’t ‘get it’.    Now, 30+ years later, I more than get it.

I hear so much about how people are sick of being ‘politically correct’, as if that is somehow a free pass to treat people with disrespect and lack of compassion (see desensitized above).     I’m not big on labels, because I feel as though you it’s an effort to decide who or what something or someone is based on something small, and we are much more complex human beings than a label.  We grow, we change, we learn (hopefully).    I don’t use PC at all, because it isn’t being PC-  it’s being respectful of others.    Yes, I know that people seem to get offended about everything these days-  and I really have no idea why.

So much could be accomplished if we all chose to do one thing that I’m pretty sure we would all agree on.    Live your life by the golden rule:   Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.     Sounds simple doesn’t it?    Why do we complicate it so much?

Want to grow beyond the four walls of your comfort zone?  Spend time in the company of someone who has had a very different life than you.   You don’t have to ‘get it’, because you won’t.  It’s not possible to understand what someone else has gone through when you haven’t had similar experiences, but what you can do is show them compassion.   You can see them, you can love them, you can offer them dignity and respect.    Most everyone is doing the best that they can with the tools they have at that moment.

It doesn’t mean it will look anything like the life tools you have-   after all, your life has been different and therefore you see things through a different lens.   Even when someone is being angry, nasty, disrespectful-    it’s coming from a place of fear, insecurity, pain.   It isn’t about ‘us’- as much as we’d like to think it was.    It’s about so much more.     Rather than standing in judgment-   we should all try to stand in love-   in compassion- and in understanding that even though we may have no idea what the person has faced and is facing-   that we can still love and respect them where they are.  Not encouraging bad behavior, not being reactive, but standing in love, being love.

I wonder how different the world would be if we let go of fear of what is different than us-   and embraced love, acceptance, forgiveness?

My challenge to myself this coming holiday season, and also to you-  is to give more love.  Not to those who receive it daily, but to those you have to make the extra effort to love.    See what happens.  I’d love to hear about it.

 

Late Night Sounds

September 11th, 2016

I was up somewhat late last night- first talking to mom and then my sister. I always enjoy my conversations with both of them, so last night was no exception. It was a great way to spend my Saturday evening. At around 12:30 I decided I had better get into bed and I start hearing music coming from somewhere. I listened and eventually was able to pinpoint that it was coming from my neighbor’s home. He’s in a band and when I saw him this morning he asked if he kept me up last night with the noise. He said he’d received a new boss gt-8 and couldn’t wait to test it. I told him it did bother me a little but nothing that I couldn’t manage since he doesn’t do it often. He’s a great neighbor and I love seeing him thrive with his music passion.

Finding Pokemon

July 18th, 2016

To know me is to know that when new ‘tech’ things hit the market that get a lot of buzz- then my curiosity get the better of me and I want to know what the buzz is all about. Such was the case when the Pokemon Go app hit the market and the world erupted in more movement and gathering in spots to catch critters on the ‘Poke trail’.

Now, some of you are familiar with the original Pokemon. I am not one of those people. I don’t live under a rock, so I had heard of it ‘back in the day’, but it wasn’t something that interested me. Still, I couldn’t help but download this Pokemon Go app to see what all the hype was about.

I didn’t read tutorials, I didn’t read ‘about’ the game, so I really had no clue what the objective was, although because I’m somewhat tech savvy- I did figure out quickly that you wander around- and Pokemons appear and you capture then by tossing balls at them- It’s silly, but it has a charm about it. Good, innocent fun- as far as I’m concerned, you can’t go wrong there.

I’ve seen A LOT of people talking about how ridiculous they think it is that when there are so many serious issues happening globally that Pokemon would get all this attention that people could be focusing on other more serious issues.

My thoughts on that- I think the world needs to stop being so focused on what’s wrong- and take some time to chill- and have a little fun. Everyone has an opinion about what everyone is doing wrong these days- but no one seems to be focused on what anyone is doing right- THAT makes me sad.

When I see people playing Pokemon- I see smiles and laughter. I ran into two strangers the other day- They were 30 somethings and I’m clearly a late 40 something- and when they saw that my phone screen was opened to Pokemon- they immediately started talking to me- laughing and sharing about their game experience.

I had the same with my neighbor- whom I adore anyway, but I ran into her on the street and I had my game open- to see what was in the area- and Marcel said- Oh No- she’s doing Pokemon too! We laughed, chatted about the game and she said where she used to take her dog on 15 minute walks- she’s now taking him on 30+ minute walks- simply because she wants to see what kind of Pokemons she can find.

I’ve seen parents with their children out searching- It’s bringing people together, it”s positive and it is encouraging people to move more.

In my book- bring on more Pokemon!

Oops speaking of which- I just spotted one of those worm ones on Mister M. Gotta catch em all! Later!

Celebrations

June 29th, 2016

This past week was somewhat of a blur.   I spent it doing all the pre-measuring of the dry ingredients for the what ended up being around 200 IMG_5848cupcakes & a small cake for two separate events.

Both were celebrations-  one a wedding.   A couple starting their lives together, a new chapter in their life journey.  The other, celebrating 25 years of life, love and friendship together.     I was deeply honored to be able to play a small part in their special day.

The joy and smiles on their faces is why I do what I do.

This week, I decided to take a week to ‘rest’, but as it is, I haven’t done much of that.  There was so much that needed to be done that hadn’t been attended to since we returned from vacation, that I’ve spent most of my days and some evenings doing that.

Two days of gardening and planting flowers and herbs, but we’ve created yet another beautiful space to relax and enjoy!     This weekend will bring a visit from a friend, plus more baking & hopefully some great weather to enjoy along the way.

This afternoon, I’m working on some household organizing.   I’m parting with things that no longer bring me joy, or serve no real purpose & working on a better organization style with my business supplies.  I can’t wait to see it all done.  It’s going to be great!

What does your week look like so far?  Whatever it is- I hope you are filled with joy.

Neighbors

June 29th, 2016

As most of you who know me already know- things have been a huge blur since we returned from our vacation. It was one for the books though, with the highlights being two weddings, plus seeing the amazing Harry Connick Jr. in concert.

During my jet lag days (which I think I’m about over), I’ve heard my neighbor who has a band practice at odd times of the night. Since I am usually sleeping, I don’t hear them, but I guess he’s been testing his new amp and microphone adapter, because his voice seems to carry more than usual. I’m also surprised at how different he sounds compared to before we left. It sounds like the voice lessons he’s been taking have definitely paid off.

I heard through the grapevine that they will be playing at a local talent concert in a few weeks. I’m hoping we can get there to help support them. If not, I’m sure I’ll hear them practicing beforehand.

Noticing the Little Things

February 15th, 2016

Earlier today, I was focused on doing some tax preparations and I glanced up.   The morning, which had been filled with grey skies and even a little snow here and there, IMG_0292had given way to blue skies and bright sunshine.     It’s cold outside, but the sun- oh the sun- it was so beautiful.

As I glanced up and took notice (and a moment of gratitude) of the sunshine, I also noticed the tulips that my mother-in-law gave me a few days ago looked as though they were basking in the golden afternoon sunshine.    With the sign on the wall hanging above it, seeing the two together brought a huge smile to my face.

The photo doesn’t nearly do the beauty of the moment justice, but I wanted to capture it anyway.

If you know me- then you know that red is one of my favorite colors, but also that I love words, and the beauty found in the little things that surround us daily.    Things that we often miss because our focus is somewhere else-  our minds jaunting off so far ahead of us that we can’t really keep up, unless it’s when we drift off to dreamland each night.

This year, I’m trying to take the time to notice those ‘little things’ even more.   To take a moment to really enjoy the gift that I’m given in not only noticing, but also in the moment itself.    Today, I did just that.

What about you?   What one ‘little thing’ did you notice today that brought a smile to your face, joy or warmth to your heart?

Closed- Left No Forwarding Address

January 25th, 2016

Over the weekend I was talking to a friend who is on the search for a specific instrument for her son. She’s new to our town, and asked if I knew of any stores that sell instruments. I could think of a couple that ‘used’ to be in the area- but a quick Google search proved them to be closed. Since I hadn’t needed one and they aren’t in areas that I visit often, I hadn’t even realized they’d closed. The two of us were able to find some online, and hopefully she’ll be able to find what she’s searching for there.

Oh to be musically inclined. That’s one talent, I haven’t been able to develop, but if I were to choose, I’d definitely want to play the drums. What about you?

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