Goals

I don’t know about you, but I have the habit of noting down sayings, adages or words which evoke a response.   It may be years months or days before I reread them or even remember them.   Then there are the quotes which keep on appearing in various reading locations.

I found the following quote when I found a journal buried in the bottom of my Christmas fabric box.   The quote I had written on the first page, but I had also found it written on numerous other pages in the same journal.   Obviously, it had resonated with me years ago and it is really resonated with me today.

Don’t let others define you.

Don’t let the past confine you.

Take charge of your life with confidence and determination.

There are no limits to what you can do or be.

(Michael Josephson)

Can you imagine what a world we would have if we could instil this into our young people?   Can you imagine what the next generation could achieve?  However, I believe that this idea is something any person could take on board at any stage of their life.   That this quote could enhance the quality of anyone’s life.

I really like the line; “take charge of your life with confidence and determination”.   Wow that is so powerful.   Taking charge of my life is something I have been trying to do but to do it with confidence, now wouldn’t that be something else.

Confidence grows with accomplishments.   Instead of setting impossible goals I have set goals which I know I can achieve.   In fact, this year on reflection I have set and achieved numerous goals.   And yes, my confidence has grown in the sense that I know that I can accomplish goals which are important to me and not to anyone else.

I do not need others to endorse what I have achieved but with every goal achieved the confidence which leads to the determination to set more goals.   Personal goals have ignited passions within me and together with the determination I have scrapped some goals.   And that is liberating.

Sometimes we may set goals based on what others think they should be rather than being true to ourselves and the goals which we know are good for us.   Sometimes we need to have the confidence and determination to listen to our inner voice and ignore those who really don’t know what ignites our passion.  “Don’t let others define you”.

Sometimes it is difficult to let go of the goals which were set 20, 30 even 40 years ago.   I have found  the goals of years ago which I had  set but had not achieved had been hanging around me like this big ball and chain.   This year I realised that one goal in particular was not going to define me.   I actually admitted to myself that I had felt a failure for not having achieved it.   However , on reflection I realised that it hadn’t really been my goal but instead I had thought that it should be and it would give me a sense of worth.   The relief of finally saying that I didn’t need to take on someone elses goal was immense.  It was also liberating.

It is good to set goals but it is even more rewarding when the goals are one’s we set for ourselves and follow through with confidence.  Sometimes as we grow older we forget that goals are not just for the young.  Setting personal goals keeps us going. It adds spice to our lives and enriches our lives.

 

 

 

 

Girlfriends

Today is National Girlfriends Day and what a fantastic thing to celebrate. I personally think that friendship among women is something very special.

There are those friends who are only in your life for a short period. Perhaps it is during the school years or perhaps during various stages of one’s working life. They keep us going. When those friendships come to a natural conclusion that is fine. Life intervenes and to be honest I think it would be impossible to keep every friendship going.

There are the friends one meets during difficult times. They support you and then as those difficult times ease you both move on with your lives and again that is ok.

There are those friends which one meets through perhaps pastimes, hobbies, shared interest. Perhaps you only meet them during those shared interests, but they are an integral part of the enjoyment of those interests.

Perhaps you have some friends who are years or decades younger and their perspective on life adds to your knowledge as we are always learning.

I was listening to someone recently who looked on her local librarian as her friend as every two week she knows that there is going to be a new book waiting for her which will stimulate her, intrigue her or even get her riled. These books have been chosen by someone who cares and that is the definition of friendship for her.

Then again there are those friends who you may be privileged enough to have had them for twenty years or more. They have become part of the fabric of your life.  That is such a special blessing.

I have been blessed with so many gifts of friendship that I am humbled. Today I am remembering with great fondness but also with a heavy heart some friends who have died. I still go to the phone to ring them or I am just about to send them a text, or message them and even had a card made for one friend when I realise “No “they are no longer here. However, their legacy of friendship remains within my heart.

I have been privileged to have received the gift of friendship from so many.

Happy Girlfriend Day.

 

 

Friendship

Friendship is everything in life, 
Life without friendship is like life without air…
Life without friendship is like eats without food
And
Life without friendship is like body without soul…

(excerpt from Friendship by Qistina Zani)

An Early Morning Dance

Standing on the back step, underneath an umbrella, mug in hand watching the rain.  It was a beautiful scene.  The wooden garden furniture had taken on a different hue.  In the rain the wooden seat seemed to glow as it was washed by the rain.

The rain drops were dancing on the glass table, making a dance as they tapped their way along to the edge.   A bucket had been placed strategically to catch the encore of the dance.

Looking up at the seomra or man shed a spider’s web glistened in the early morning light.  The gossamer web was bejewelled with drops of rain.  There was magic all around as this suburban garden was dressed by the rain.

The air smelt so differently.  It was so fresh and clear.  It was as if the rain has rejuvenated everything.  There was a richness abounding this oasis.

It reminded me of a blog post I read recently written by Honey Barapatre which talked of being rich https://inspireart.in/2018/07/15/being-rich/.

I realised that this morning I was so rich with the sights, sounds and smells brought by this shower of rain.  I have always loved the rain but perhaps because of the long hot dry summer which Ireland has been experiencing this shower of rain was even more special.

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Friendship

 

Friendship can mean many things.

Friendship can be transient as our life develops.  Sometimes friendships fade as our lives take us apart.  That is ok.  Those people came into our lives for a short period and gave the gift of friendship when it was needed.

Friendship can be a gradual process.  Sometimes it flows and ebbs like the tide but there is the knowledge that with a letter, card phone call even a text that friendship will still be there.

Some friendships have lasted decades and have seen us though happy, ordinary and devastating times of our lives.  It is as if, those friends have been a part of our lives since forever.

Some friendships have developed when we least expected them to.  Perhaps through the joining of a group perhaps from a shared interest. Perhaps going through a difficult time. Perhaps at a time of happiness.

Some friendships develop despite age differences.  It is the age difference which adds to the friendship and gives a different perspective on life.

Some friendships developed in the time of pen pals

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Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

while some friendships have developed in the digital age.

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Photo by Tracy Le Blanc on Pexels.com

Each friendship adds to our lives.  Each friendship is unique.  Each friendship is special.  Each friendship is unique because of what we put into it.

This poem was written by Robert Frost, has always reminded me that time with friends is special.

 

 Time to Talk

When a friend calls to me from the road
And slows his horse to a meaning walk,
I don’t stand still and look around
On all the hills I haven’t hoed,
And shout from where I am, ‘What is it?’
No, not as there is a time to talk.
I thrust my hoe in the mellow ground,
Blade-end up and five feet tall,
And plod: I go up to the stone wall
For a friendly visit.

Where Have I heard that Line?

Do you ever find that a poem, piece of writing, a song lyric will resonate with you one day and on another day will have no impact?  A word, a phrase, a memory will trigger a need to read the entire poem, read the entire passage or listen to that song.

 

“Sing and the hills will answer:

Sigh it is lost on the air;”

 

These lines have been reverberating in my mind for the last few days until last night when I decided to start a search to find the poem from which they come.  This time I didn’t want to use a google search.  I don’t know why but it seemed important to browse through poetry books and books of “sayings and quotes” to find the source.

It was an inexplicably comforting thing to do.  It didn’t feel as if I was the only one wide awake and on a search at 2.43am when I began my search.  It felt just right.  There were many stops along this search when I was reacquainted with long forgotten poems.

I found “Desiderata” by Max Ehrmann again.  This was a popular prose poem when I was in secondary school in the 1970’s do you remember the opening lines? “Go placidly amid the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence.”

The sun had risen and with a mug of coffee sitting on the back-door step I started browsing another book of poetry.  This book was given to me to celebrate my recent 60th birthday by a friend who knows how I love to hop in and out of poetry books.  She gave me two books.  “A Poem for Every Day of the Year” edited by Allie Esiri and its sister book “A Poem for Every night of the Year”.  Anne chose well and through her I have become reacquainted with some old forgotten poetry but also, I have been introduced to new poems and poets.

It was in one of these books that I found it.  I found from where those few lines came from.  I had found“Solitude” by Ella Wheeler Wilcox

 

Solitude

Laugh and the world laughs with you:

Weep, and you weep alone;

For the sad old earth must borrow its mirth,

But has trouble enough of its own.

Sing, and the hills will answer;

Sigh, it is lost on the air;

The echoes bound to a joyful sound,

But shrink from voicing care.

Ironing During Summer Hibernation

So, it’s official Ireland is in the middle of a Heatwave.   Temperatures reached 30C yesterday.   Now this hasn’t happened in a long time.   So many young people in Ireland have not experienced a long period of dry weather never mind a heat wave.

Still the chores needed to be done.   The mound of ironing had morphed into a mountain and the world cup was calling to me so ironing in front of the TV worked well.

That was until the final scores when Senegal were knocked out of the tournament.   They had played well although yesterday their finishing let them down.   I was delighted that Japan had got through.

I then watched the Japan v Poland match.   What a shock to see so-called professional footballers passing the ball to one another with no attempt to play it in the oppositions half for a full 15 minutes.   It was obvious that the teams had decided, that if the score remained as it was with Poland having won by a single goal, then Japan would go through to the final 16 and there was no need to actually play football.

How dare these so-called professionals do this?  Do they not know, that their supporters would have had to save for perhaps a year to travel and purchase tickets for the World Cup?  Do their supporters not deserve to see their national team playing until the final whistle?  I would have been ashamed if the Irish Republic’s team had played in such a manner.

Thank goodness I didn’t scorch any clothes while I ranted and raved.   But it was a very disappointing way to end a football match no matter what the reason.

Summer

 

I am not a summer person.  I think I spend more time inside during the summer than at any other time of the year.  This year has been so warm that I have hibernated and enjoyed my hibernation.  Books, books and more books interspersed with football, rugby and the odd film.  The anticipation of Wimbledon and the World Cup followed by the Tour de France it is just a pleasure to hibernate.

 

Now, I do have to admit that there are some lovely aspects to a dry hot summer.  It is wonderful to be able to sit out in the garden in the evening with sun gone and the air still warm.  It is wonderful to be able to go for a walk in the evening without having to carry an umbrella or coat.  No need to plan for those showers of rain.

 

A sound which epitomises Summer for me is the sound of bees. There is a hedge in the back garden which attracts the bees. It is covered in tiny flowers at the moment and the bees just swarm around it. There is also woodbine in the hedge and the sound of bees is just magical.

 

Honey Bee

This photo was taken by my husband John showing a honey bee in the garden hedge.

 

However, what I enjoy the most is being able to wash the clothes, peg them out and know that they will be dry in a few hours.  There is a different smell from clothes which have dried in the air.  And what about getting those duvets dried? Sheer bliss.  A little piece of heaven when folding those winter duvets after drying in the sun.  That smell of sunshine seems to linger.

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Photo by Lukas on Pexels.com

 

Just one word of warning, if you are washing pillows please check that no minute tears have mysteriously formed before washing pillows.  I did not take adequate time to check and ended up with an empty pillow and a washing machine full of fibres.  Such is life.

 

So yes, I suppose I do enjoy summer but in my own way which perhaps is not the norm.  then again  who says what is the norm? Enjoy your day wherever you may be.