daily love note: no.11

The day after Christmas – a haiku:

Wrapping paper floors;

Deconstructed box dances;

Christmas trees – half off!

Whether you are spoiling yourself with the post-holiday sales – or running damage control on your living room: stay merry.

daily love note: no.10

Christmas Cookies

If you are looking for a way to build more conversation into your quality time with loved ones – try baking.

It rewards all the senses.

And if you are looking for an easy (and very satisfying) place to start (from scratch) – I offer this gift: our family tradition.

Melt Away Cookies

½ cup of butter

½ cup of margarine

⅓ cup of powdered sugar

⅔ cup of corn starch

1 cup of flour

½ teaspoon of vanilla

Frosting

2 tablespoons of butter

1 cup of powdered sugar

2 tablespoons of cream or half and half

(Food coloring if desired)

Instructions:

  • Cream butter, margarine and vanilla.
  • Add in dry ingredients – mix until perfect cookie batter texture.
  • Roll dough into small balls and flatten with the bottom of a wet glass.
  • Bake on an un-greased cookie sheet at 400 degrees for 10 mins.
  • Let them cool (hardest part).
  • Make the frosting – mix together butter, sugar, half and half, and food coloring until smooth.
  • Frost.
  • Enjoy.

May you be like the calories these cookies contain – abundant.

daily love note: no.9

A song I wrote once that is relevant to this time of year #topical (listen at the bottom)

Christmas lists are carried by minivans

Through traffic lights

Yellow seems to be just another faded kind of green…

And we’re on our way…

Shopping malls are a frantic fight

For debit cards and narrow sights

And airports take the place

Of santa’s rusty sleigh

And we’re on our way…

We’re on our way…

To Christmas day

Trudging through the snow, I see

The windows full of light, they breathe

A warmth that you can hold

And all the faces you call home

I’m at the door…

Oh, I love it when I hear you say

We’re glad that you’re home

On Christmas day

(listen to these words accompanied by introspective guitar, piano, and emotional young man)

Warm wishes to all.

daily love note: no.8

Virtual reality is upon us:

Wanderlust with the flick of your thumb.

Access the world’s entire history with the a single click.

Rearrange your face if the lighting was too bright.

Forfeit the lines you wait in.

Filter out negative speech – opting for words of affirmation, instead.

Take mini minute-long vacations and time travels to places you love more than where you currently are.

The great Barry White once said: “…too much of anything

Is not good for you, baby…”

(I Googled that from my 1000-ft pedestal, btw)

Okay, to clarify…he heard someone say that. So, he didn’t really say it…he just repeated what someone else told him.

So, what I am trying to say is: I heard Barry White say something that someone else said (that he later negates in the following lines of the song’s intro…) that too much of anything is not good for you (baby).

As I disassemble the framing device I used to get to this paragraph…I have come to accept that we’re past the point of too much.

Virtual reality is no longer virtual:

It is. And will continue to be.  

While some may outright reject the notion of virtual reality; this form of escapism can lead to a better world – I think. I think.

I think.

If we acknowledge what it is and how it calls to us (baby).

We do this by understanding the power of what we possess and the drug that it can become.

daily love note: no.7

The Ballad of the Second Shortest Day of the Year

The second shortest day of the year (SSDOTY) had spent its entire life attempting to best the benchmarks of the day before it – the shortest day of the year (SDOTY).

A few years ago SSDOTY trailed SDOTY by just a handful of seconds.

A valiant effort it thought – keep training for next year.

SSDOTY tried all kinds of different things to outpace the SDOTY:

  • It tried being a Monday.
  • It tried being a Tuesday.
  • It tried being a Wednesday.
  • It never liked being a Thursday (comparison issues with being a Friday – everyone’s favorite day)
  • It tried being a Friday.
  • It tried being a casual Friday.
  • It tried being a Saturday.
  • It tried being a Sunday.

Each year – the results were the same.

Then the SSDOTY had a thought, “If I can’t be the shortest day of the year…maybe I can be something else. Maybe I already am.

And sure enough – it was:

One year, it was the coldest day on record in Clam Falls, MN.

And another year, it was the warmest day on record in Cancun, Mexico.

Both notable somethings to be.   

It was a birthday…for literally millions of people – that was certainly something.

It always outpaced the third shortest day of the year – a day almost no one thought about.

And the SSDOTY consistently beat the longest day of the year’s record for finishing a day – by a long shot.

Also a notable somethings!

Yes, SSDOTY was something, for sure.

And that was really all it needed – to be.

daily love note: no.6

The morning routine of a successful armed robber:

Wake up.

Try to remember that weird dream you had where a genie finally granted your wish to have more wishes.

(Write it down in your dream journal – quick!)

Do robber exercises – knee-highs and light yoga.

Pick an outfit: all black, horizontal stripes; hat/no hat. Gloves? Be mindful of the season.

Check the weather.

(Gloves weather)

Brush teeth with organic flouride-free toothpaste you stole from that fancy grocery store.

Then brush with regular toothpaste…because: let’s be real, that organic stuff never leaves you feeling all that clean.

Do your daily affirmations:

May I have all the money in the bag – large bills only.

I will have all your money.

May someone else’s stuff eventually become my stuff.

May people value their lives more than their things.

May every new day be full (of stuff I can steal).

Do 10 mins of “stick-em-ups” in the mirror (using your finger; not actual gun).

Smile at yourself; because, “Hey, look at you go! Remember when you thought you would never be a morning person?!

daily love note: no.5

It’s a rainy one today.

This is where you could say something like…”after the storm comes the sun…” or “rain, rain, go away. If you don’t, I’ll call my lawyer…” or however that phrase goes.

But what is rain? (he ponders)

Rain comes from a sky that is saturated with too much.

Rain is release.

It is unbridled, all over the place, and essential.

Sometimes, when you’re in it…

it’s unpleasant.

But it always leads to growth.

Relinquish some control today: let go of the things that saturate your mind with too much.

The sound of rain is therapeutic for a reason.

daily love note: no.4

When was the last time you shared something with someone?

And not out of obligation:

There is only so much of this and I have some and you don’t so I will share to not look selfish.

The kind of sharing you do to advocate for something. 

What was your motivation to share?

The old adage states that “sharing is caring.” Caring is nice. That’s a good motivation.

But advocates oftentimes have agendas. 

Why do we share?

We share because we want others to understand our experience…and typically, we share when we believe sharing will lead to a shared experience – empathy.

That is why we get defensive when people don’t like the things we like – it conflicts with our view of the world.

So, while sharing is caring…in order to truly be caring, we must first have empathy for the people we share with.

We must acknowledge their perspective – making them much more likely to want to understand our own.

That is nice.

daily love note: no.3

I love the calm of winter.

(Maybe it’s an evolutionary thing? Slowing down – eating more. Hibernating.)

Winter feels like a deep breath.

One you take in with a clean palate – surrounded by crisp blankets of insulation. 

The acoustics add a nice touch of presence.

Breath work becomes the clothes we wear: hats and scarves and big jackets that make our heavy breathing more noticeable; more audible; visible.

Take some time to consider your breath today.

Take deep breaths before you eat (and eat more).

Take deep breaths before you sleep. 

Take a deep breath right now (unless you’re drinking something or eating something…I’ll wait). 

Feel good?

Good. 

Forget the bustle of the holidays.

Leverage the calm of winter to engage your diaphragm – consciously.

Breath is the gift of presence.

Breath is the calm of winter.

daily love note: no.2

I have one big problem with patience: it is reliant on an outcome.

This is what makes patience so tricky. It can easily skirt the lines of entitlement if left unchecked.

Like a hopeless romantic orchestrating elaborate deeds of affection to win a lover.

But what if we removed the reigns of expectation?

Did good things just to do them. Not for photo op, good story, or attempt to win someone over.

That changes the game completely. That is the power of contentment.

Patience – expectations = contentment

Contentment gets a bad wrap when it is saddled up next to patience.

We have engineered contentment to be submissive to our circumstances – more akin to a quiet sadness than a quiet heart.

The paradigm needs a shift, though.

This is my hope for you: 

May you be content.

May you let patience rest from so many years of work.

When you leave this world; may you leave it unconfused.