So many stories about how to live fully and successfully. Often the measurement of successful and full living is based on money in the bank, the neighborhood you live, clothing you wear, who you know, what you have accomplished in your career and other outward signs of financial success. Others have written that being successful is having happy children, finding calm amidst life's pain and struggle and still others write about success as a measured by enlightenment. All of these seem valid ways to measure success. Beyond these measurements of success, I developed some thoughts around another idea or theme for myself. My yardstick is one that measures moments of presence. Moments that I am here and now, and in this moment, touching my keyboard, looking at the letters that become words, stopping to breathe and then a blog post. PS writing this blog about presence takes my mind that is worried about our broader world's turmoil and brings me back to this moment.
Tuesday, January 11, 2022
The JOYFUL Use of the famous Ginsu Knife…
Bridget Lott, my beloved sister, used my Ginsu knife about 30 years ago to cut some wooden dowels as she was building a doll house. After a successful cut, she then tested it to see if it would still cut tomatoes with ease. Yes, to our great delight, the Ginsu worked well for both sawing through the wooden dowels and slicing tomatoes with ease. Here we are 30 years later, using the same Ginsu knife, my beloved husband Joseph Romano needed to do a quick project. Joe needed to trim a wooden drawer that was not quite fitting into a new bathroom vanity due to the configuration of the plumbing pipes. Following the quick trimming of the wooden drawer using the great Ginsu, we then cleaned the Ginsu and used it to slice some crusty french bread. I don’t usually write about products, however, the Ginsu was a gift from my beloved brother Patrick Lott who had bought it at the LA County Fair in Pomona, CA circa 1985. It has been the most useful gift I have ever received and has brought much joy to our family since we often test it’s touted benefits. “But wait! There’s more!” This expression “But wait! There’s more,” was introduced as part of the Ginsu marketing campaign. First ever product recommendation from me - YES buy the Ginsu, But wait! There's more.... you will be able to use it forever and in many practical ways and find joy in the use. #ginsu #barrybecher #butwaittheresmore
Sunday, January 2, 2022
God wants to pamper us. Are we open to God's JOY, ABUNDANCE and LOVE? 2022, a new year, a new beginning and a clean slate for JOY, ABUNDANCE and LOVE. Say YES, accept invitations, live fully, and discover how God pampers our very existence. Life has struggles and disappointments and grief. Do we remain in those struggles, disappointments and grief or do we allow our neighbors, friends, family, our God to heal. What we resist persists. What we say no to, closes doors. When we open our hearts and minds, life opens doors unimaginable. I have never been the martyr type, more of the taker type and yet.....in accepting the gifts of humanity and of God and Nature, the gifts of JOY, ABUNDANCE and LOVE multiply!!!! Let God pamper you this year for in God's softness, generosity and love, we gain wisdom, understanding and courage to pamper others.
Thursday, November 18, 2021
It takes great courage to live and especially in 2021. Compassion and responsibility are the virtues that have come to mind as I explore ways to step into helping others. Often, my first reaction is to say it will be ok, or you are good as you are, however, lately the inspiration to be more direct with others may in fact be what they/we need. Have I coddled others/myself too much at the expense of not enabling others to live up to their potential or my fear of losing friendships? As a 32 year veteran of the St. Vincent De Paul Society of San Mateo County, compassion for the poor is a basic tenant of my faith and our society. Equally as important as compassion is responsibility. Responsibility includes helping people take steps to improve their situation. It is easy to be compassionate but takes hard work to be responsible. It takes real commitment to go from providing food to providing training, sharing access to a network of services and following up with those we serve to help them move forward with skills, education, job applications and consistent contact. This effort is to ensure that they move in a direction emotionally and physically to create a better life for themselves. Socialism, as I am beginning to more deeply understand, takes that responsibility away from people with the notion that someone else will take care of them. Until we step into what we can do for ourselves we are not aware of our human potential. Socialism robs people of the opportunity to become all that they are intended to become. Even as good Christians we know that we are make in the image of God. God is all good and capable. My question for myself is "do I hold people up as able?" or "do I give a bag of food and run from my own responsibility to really help people?" Another way to say....do I give the poor a fish or do I teach them to fish. We are all capable of more than we think, we must step into our potential and push all others to do the same or we will die!
Wednesday, November 10, 2021
Today, as I was praying before the noon mass started, I pondered a phrase "All In One." All In One or AIO, as my nephew Conor calls it, is a term he was using to describe a computer that had everything, eg., monitor, keyboard, etc., essentially all in one. I loved this term so much I quickly adopted it for a yoga pose we do called Downward Dog. Downward Dog, also known as Adho Mukha Svanasana, is a foundational yoga posture. Downward Dog Pose tones the arms and legs, opens and strengthens the shoulders in flexion, lengthens the hamstrings and stretches the calves, and prepares the body for heating. Because it’s a combination of stretching, flexibility, balance, and strength, practicing Down Dog can help to balance and stretch your whole body, hence why I like to call it the All In One pose.
Tuesday, November 9, 2021
The evening is here. The time is 6:29pm Tuesday. I will be joining a 7pm Bible Study zoom call and so I have time.....before that starts. I sit here at my desk in my home office/guest room and think what shall I write about tonight. I connected with my friend Carol Bagley, I wrote an email and text to my nephew James Heath inviting him to join the bible study too. I have my book next to me I could read and the Holy Bible too. Alas, I just want to put my thoughts on paper, in this blog so that have my daily blog posted. A statue of Mother Mary and Jesus adorns this beautiful desk where I sit along with family photos, a small box, and my art supplies oh yes a pretty beer stein turned into a lamp by my father circa 1955. Night time for me tonight is very quiet as Joe is Fresno with the boys and I stayed here in Burlingame since my schedule did not permit my travel this week. As I look at the words I wrote, I am grateful for this quiet, my husband, these photos, the Mother Mary and Jesus statue from Grandma Van. In this quiet I am feeling my breath breathing me and experiencing a sense of good health and the joy of knowing I will connect shortly to a bible study with friends from St. CAtherine's Catholic Church in Burlingame, CA. I am grateful for night time and the gift of quiet and prayer.
Monday, November 8, 2021
Yesterday we met, our local conference of St. Vincent De Paul. We call ourselves Vincentians. We had not been in a meeting together, in a room, close and seeing each other eye to eye, heart to heart in a long time. It was wonderful and it brought joy to each of us. I could see and feel and experience the love we share for one another and for those we serve. Susan D. wanted to do a turkey give away for the many families we visit throughout the year. Sue G. hosted us and there we met, discussed and interjected ideas and approaches on how we would make this all happen. The end result is we created a great plan. Everyone has a part in the plan. I am discovering that our little Vincentian group really goes way beyond service to others and has become deep and loving friendships for us. Our 5 virtues that we strive for in our SVDP society include: Simplicity, Humility, Gentleness, Selflessness and Zeal. Yesterday, during our meeting, I saw all of that in each member. What a blessing. I am thankful to have found this vocation and these wonderful friends. #svdp, #stvincentdepaul, #service, #love, #friends