Luck and good management, sowing and reaping, and where preparation meets perspiration.

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap, but by the seeds that you plant. Robert Louis Stevenson

Where does luck play in our lives and what role does god management play? When we hear about the lives of the rich and the famous it does seem they were at the right place at the right time, and they were prepared to take advantage of the luck that came their way. What were they doing to make that lucky break possible?

My son showed me a short video last night of a mother and her daughter taking an ice bath, the daughter looks to be about three. If we are willing to take ice baths what else might we accomplish in life?

I love to hear stories of how author’s books were discovered. A book has to be found, opened, read, and thought to be worth the read to become a great book. But, no one can find the book if it hasn’t been written, and no one can take our great invention, discovery, or idea and turn it into something bigger if we didn’t do something with the small kernel of an idea when it came to us.

How often have we seen something and wish we’d thought of it, but how often have we seen something someone else is doing and we did think about it, but didn’t do anything with the idea?

How many thoughts have we had that if implemented would have elevated our lives? We can’t do anything about opportunities that came in the past we didn’t take advantage of, but what would our life look like if we took advantage of the opportunities as they come in our future?

What we plant in the soil of contemplation, we shall reap in the harvest of action. Meister Eckhart

What if we fail? What if playing it safe is a big failure in life? What if living a life with audacious goals is living the good life? What if we regret what we don’t do more than what we do?

We might write a book that doesn’t sell, but we’ve still written a book. We might start a business that doesn’t become a big success, but we still started a business, and if we’ve started one we can start another, just like we can write another book. What if collecting failures is something we have to do on our way to success? We have to get in the game to win the game, and too often we sit on the sidelines waiting for someone to do something, but if anything is going to change, we have to be the ones to change it.

How often do we think about what we could have done differently in the past, but what if we start thinking about what we can change in the future? We have no power to change the past, but what if we have a lot more power than we think to build our future? We have however much time we have and it will pass whether we do anything with it or not.

This is the month to plant a garden, and those who don’t plant now won’t enjoy the benefits of the garden later. Life is all about sowing and reaping, but we can’t reap what we didn’t sow!

What seeds can we plant today to reap in the future? What seeds are we planting that we won’t reap, but our grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and great-great-grandchildren will reap?

You cannot hold on to anything good. You must be continually giving – and getting. You cannot hold on to your seed. You must sow it – and reap anew. You cannot hold on to riches. You must use them and get other riches in return. Robert collier

Life is an echo. What you send out comes back. What you sow, you reap. What you give, you get. What you see in others, exists in you. Zig Ziglar

If you don’t like the crop you are reaping, check the seed you are sowing. John C. Maxwell

Thank you for reading this post. Please come back and read some more, and have a blessed day filled with gratitude, joy, and love.

To subscribe, comment, and see archives or categories of posts click on the picture and scroll to the end.

Thank you for reading my books, and a special thank you to those who leave a review on Goodreads and Amazon. If you click on the Amazon link and purchase an item I receive a small percentage of the sale through the Amazon affiliate program.

Living life, making choices, and asking questions.

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make, the better. Ralph Waldo Emerson

Spring flowers, trees in bloom, and getting out into the garden, what a wonderful weekend. The plants at my local store look lovely, and it’s time to plan what to plant.

This year we are making a little garden for our grandson. Four tires are in the backyard waiting to be painted and then we’ll assemble three on the bottom and one on top. Once we fill it with soil we can take him to pick out what he wants to plant.

I can hear him now, “This one, this one, and this one.” He happily played in his sandbox while I gardened on Saturday, and he was having so much fun when his father asked if he wanted to go to the park he said “No.”

I think about how Mom and Dad managed the farm when we were little. But when I was taking the tires out of bags, I had my grandson sit on the step and each time we went back for another tire he’d sit on the step.

He’s a big helper; he wants to help with everything. He helps crack eggs for breakfast, peel the garlic, and put it in the garlic press, and his favorite is to spin the lettuce.

Mom always said, “If you don’t let them help when they are little they won’t want to help when they are big.” It is so much fun watching him develop, and enjoy the little things in life. I hope he remains exuberant and willing to do things all his life. Is there a better motto for life than, “I do it.”

We don’t see things the way they are. We see them the way we are. Talmud

Watching him I wonder where my, “I do it,” went. That whatever is out there I could learn, master, and go on to the next adventure. I think of things to do, then think of the effort and cost, and wonder if it is worth it. We censor ourselves which is good and bad, we need good judgment to live a good life, but we also need a sense of adventure, getting out of our comfort zone, and doing things we haven’t done.

It might be true that a library and a garden help us lead a contented life, but is there room in our lives for adventure? Are we trying new things, going to new places, eating new food, and meeting new people? Fitting everything into our life is a challenge. We can’t do everything, see, and experience everything, but could we do more? Is it time for many of us to decide what is important to do in the next few years?

Is there one thing we want to do in different areas of our life we haven’t done yet? The best time to do it might have been twenty years ago, but the next best time is now. Spring is a great time to think about who we want to be, what we want to do, and what is possible.

Is there an adventure in our future? Do we need to get out of our comfort zone? What do we still want to do we haven’t done?

Define success on your own terms, achieve it by your own rules, and build a life you’re proud to live. Anne Sweeney

Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning. Albert Einstein

Sometimes the questions are complicated, and the answers are simple. Dr Seuss

Thank you for reading this post. Please come back and read some more, and have a blessed day filled with gratitude, joy, and love.

To subscribe, comment, and see archives or categories of posts click on the picture and scroll to the end.

Thank you for reading my books, and a special thank you to those who leave a review on Amazon and Goodreads. If you click on the Amazon link and purchase an item I receive a small percentage of the sale through the Amazon affiliate program.

Directing our days is directing our lives. We are where we are because of the choices we’ve made.

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

It is not enough to be busy… The question is: what are we busy about? Henry David Thoreau

Are we saying yes to life? As opportunities come along do we say yes or no to living an adventurous life? We might think adventure never knocks at our door, but is that true? Aren’t there always things we could be doing, learning, and experiencing?

One of the things I do is look at things I’d like to do and say, “That’s too expensive.” But at some point in our lives, it becomes do or don’t do, we’ve put off the things we want to do so long it is time to make it happen or know it will never happen.

Travel is one of the things we’ve wanted to do but haven’t done much of. But next year we are planning a trip to England. Many people are well-traveled but we’ve always used the excuse that it is hard to get away from a business – which it is, but every time we’ve taken time off it has worked out well.

Living a good life is up to us to interpret in our way, no two lives are the same, and we’ve made choices that have brought us to where we are. What would we like more of and what would we like less of in our lives? Would we like more fitness and health, that might mean less chips and ice cream, more walks, and less TV.

Do we want to go through life hand in hand with our partner, or do we have individual goals? Does one want one and the other partner wants the other? How do we make it work if we want to be out doing things in the world and our partner thinks we should be happy at home?

This weekend I said no to a walk with a friend, because my sister-in-law was coming over, or so I thought. But in the end, I did nothing on Sunday afternoon. I could have had a lovely afternoon walk, laughed, and stopped for tea.

It is easy to put off going for a walk, calling a friend, trips we want to take, exercising, and reading the books we say we want to read. The things we have to do, we do, but what about the things that feed our soul, expand our mind, and benefit our body? They often wait patiently, and if we aren’t careful they might never happen, because they aren’t urgent so we must fit them into our lives deliberately.

What is important is seldom urgent and what is urgent is seldom important. Dwight Eisenhower

How good are we at sorting out the important from the urgent? We get to decide what we do with our time, but if we don’t decide what to do with it others will decide for us, or the time will fly by with nothing accomplished.

Somehow we need to balance our lives between the urgent, and the important, our goals and dreams, and our partner’s goals and dreams. Today is the day we have, to plan and schedule the life we want, to make the most out of what is possible. It takes a plan and a schedule to get things done, and we should stop and smell the roses along the way.

Is there something we need to put into our schedule that we haven’t found the time to do?

A plan is what, a schedule is when. It takes both a plan and a schedule to get things done. Peter Turla

Lack of direction, not lack of time, is the problem. We all have twenty-four hour days. Zig Ziglar

Tomorrow is often the busiest day of the week. Anonymous

Thank you for reading this post. Please come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, joy, and love.

To subscribe, comment, and see archives or categories of posts click on the picture and scroll to the end.

Thank you for reading my books, and a special thank you for leaving a review on Goodreads and Amazon. If you click on the Amazon link and purchase an item I receive a small percentage of the sale through the Amazon affiliate program.

How high can we go if we work on being better today than yesterday?

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

If we are growing, we’re always going to be out of our comfort zone. John C. Maxwell

Last night I listened to John Maxwell as I painted, he said he was told if he spent five years learning anything he could be a master at it, and he chose leadership. Halfway through his five years, he started seeing progress; people began seeing him as a leader. He changed his question from, “How long will it take, to how far can I go?” That question changed his life, how far can he go? How many more books can he write, and how many more people and organizations can he help?

What if we asked ourselves the same question? How far can we go, how much impact can we have, what difference can we make? Some of us may have a broad reach touching many lives, and some may have a deep reach where we impact fewer people but impact them mightily. We may have little impact outside of our family, but our impact may reverberate, and what seemed small and insignificant may have a wider impact than we think.

The family is the building block of our civilization and we are each part of a family. Do we lift others when we can, encourage them when needed, and help someone get back on course? Are we there in the good times and the bad, with them in glad times and sorrow, can they count on us for an encouraging word and a warm hug?

Success is a continuing thing, it is growth and development. It is achieving one thing and using that as a stepping stone to achieve something else. John C. Maxwell

At the Writers Group on Saturday one of our members wrote what he thought was the perfect book, and he gave it to his editor, who said, “I don’t think there is a market for this.” How great must it be for a writer to think they’ve written a perfect book? He’s written several books and didn’t get into what made that one perfect, but I’m assuming as he wrote each book he tried to make it better than the last until he thought, I don’t know how to improve on this one. It would be a great feeling to develop oneself to that point even if said book never becomes a commercial success.

We don’t know what something will become until we do it; we need to be willing to do something poorly if we ever can do it well. We will make mistakes, fail, and try again to make progress. This is the lesson we can teach our children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren, if at first you don’t succeed, try, try, again. Play on at whatever we do, and start new adventures throughout our lives.

Mom didn’t start quilting until she was in her eighties. Grandma Moses was in her late seventies when arthritis made continuing with her embroidery difficult, it was suggested she start painting instead.  Her last painting “Rainbow” was completed when she was 101.

If there is something we want to do, or something isn’t working for us anymore and we have to find another creative outlet, why not figure out how to make it happen? We may think it will take ten years to become good at it, but what can we accomplish in those ten years?

What is possible for our lives? We won’t know unless we take the steps to make something happen.

Courage isn’t an absence of fear. It’s doing what you are afraid to do. It’s having the power to let go of the familiar and forge ahead into new territory. John C. Maxwell

The only one you should compare yourself to is you. Your mission is to become better today than you were yesterday. John C. Maxwell

The greatest mistake we make is living in constant fear that we will make one. John C. Maxwell

Thank you for reading this post. Please come back and read some more. Have a blessed day, filled with gratitude, joy, and love.

To subscribe, comment, and see archives or categories of posts click on the picture and scroll to the end.

Thank you for reading my books, and a special thank you to those who leave a review on Goodreads and Amazon. If you click on the Amazon link and purchase an item I receive a small percentage of the sale through the Amazon affiliate program.

Staying the course, being true to ourselves, making things better by making a difference.

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give. Winston Churchill

Is it easier to give up than to stay the course? One of the things that sustains us when we want to give up is the habits we’ve created. We are told we can count on our habits more than our willpower.

Is it easier to create bad habits than good ones? We have to be careful we create the habits that will sustain a good life and not result in a bad one. When we realize something isn’t working for us how easy is it to change our direction, to regroup, and go forward in what we hope will work better for us?

We need to ask ourselves these questions throughout our lives. Is it easier to look at someone else’s life and see the change in direction they need but hard to see it in our own life? How often do we say to ourselves if I were them? Why is it easier to know what someone else should do than what we should do ourselves?

If we don’t keep on doing what we know needs to be done it will be our own life that suffers. What price will we pay if we don’t write our book, sing our song, or create whatever calls out to be created? What if we don’t stand up for what needs to be stood up for?

We create order out of chaos, but order is not created randomly. A pile of car parts in a garage will never randomly end up in the right place and the car rebuilt without effort by the car builder. When I see restored cars I appreciate only a small part of the effort it took to rebuild that car because I don’t know how much work and money went into it.

We are told we should only give up one dream for a greater dream. If we give up on our dreams without a bigger dream what kind of a life do we end up with? How many women give up on a dream in the workplace to create a family?

The best portion of a good man’s life is his little, nameless, unremembered acts of kindness and love. William Wordsworth

Creating a family is the one lasting thing we have, the one we can leave behind, and the one that builds on itself. If some of our dreams get put aside for family then I think the greater dream wins. We have to be careful we don’t think just because we have a family we can’t do anything else, but we also have to be careful we don’t think going after what we want means we have to give up on family.

If we are lucky at eighty we will be surrounded by family, and their accomplishments will be part of what makes us proud. They might be the one that fulfills a long-lost dream. They might be the one that finally attains the pinnacle of success, and we might have played a part in that.

We will be as proud, and maybe even prouder of what our children or grandchildren accomplish than if we accomplished it ourselves. Because they are the legacy we leave behind, our contribution to the greater good, and the progress of the future.

As I write this my grandson asked me to read him the puppy books. He didn’t sit on my knee long enough to finish them both and he was off on another adventure. He plays the piano as I write. It takes longer to accomplish things with him but everything is brighter and more fun because of him.

We must leave our world in a good place because of our grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Can we agree on what makes a better world?

Try to be a rainbow in someone’s cloud. Maya Angelou

There are two ways of spreading light: to be the candle or the mirror that reflects it. Edith Wharton

The smallest act of kindness is worth more than the greatest of intention. Kahlil Gibran

Thank you for reading this post. Please come back and read some more and have a blessed day filled with gratitude, joy, and love.

To subscribe, comment, see archives or categories of posts click on the picture and scroll to the end.

Thank you for reading my books, and a special thank you to those who leave a review on Goodreads and Amazon. If you click on the Amazon link and purchase an item I receive a small percentage of the sale through the Amazon affiliate program.

Living our best life is about choice, we have to choose between what can only happen now, and what can happen later.

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

Life is a matter of choices, and every choice you make makes you. John C. Maxwell

Stretching ourselves too thin often doesn’t accomplish what we want it to. We want to keep all our balls in the air, everyone and ourselves happy, but instead of getting everything done, we might end up spinning our wheels.

If it is true that the first twenty percent of what we do gives us eighty percent of our results, how can we focus on the effective twenty percent? I’ve been thinking about this with my morning writing which goes between the blog two mornings and writing a novel the rest of the week.

When I started the blog it was seven days a week, then I cut it down to two days a week because I didn’t have time for any other writing, and now I am cutting it down to one day a week.

How effective can we be if we set our minds to it? Parenting and grandparenting are not the areas to cut our input. Children and relationships need time and attention. We don’t have effective conversations because we’ve set aside twenty minutes for an important conversation. If we want an effective conversation, especially with a teenager we should take them on a long road trip, and not fill the space with the radio or audiobooks, but let the conversation flow however haltingly.

Sometimes it’s the smallest decisions that can change your life forever. Keri Russell

We can have relationships with many people, but most of us won’t have many close friends. We will have a few important people in our lives and the more time we spend with them the better.

Life is always about choice, where we spend our time is important. I’m spending more time with my grandson and less time writing. These wonderful months are passing by quickly, he’s almost two, and I don’t want to look back with more books written wishing I’d spent more time with him. I’m spending more time with him and getting less writing done, and I’m sure I will never regret that.

Your life is a result of the choices you have made. If you don’t like your life, start making better choices. Ziz Ziglar

Life is a chess match. Every decision that you make has a consequence to it. P. K. Subban

When your values are clear to you, making decisions becomes easier. Roy E. Disney

Thank you for reading this post. Please come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, joy, and love.

To subscribe, comment, and see archives or categories of posts click on the picture and scroll to the end.

Thank you for reading my books and a special thank you to those who leave a review on Goodreads and Amazon. If you click on the Amazon link and purchase an item I receive a small percentage of the sale through the Amazon affiliate program.

Make a choice; make a change, the compound effect works in our lives.

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

We must not, in trying to think about how we can make a big difference, ignore the small daily differences we can make which, over time, add up to big differences that we often cannot foresee. Marion Wright Edelman

The other day, I listened to Mel Robbins talking about rating how we think we are doing in different areas of our lives and then figuring out what we could do to raise our rating a point or two.

Where do we think our health and fitness rates on a scale of one to ten? Are we averagely healthy and fit for our age? That puts us at a five, so what could we do to raise it to a six or a seven? What action could we do every day or week that would add to our health and fitness and start to move our rating by a point or two? If we went for a walk once a week, that’s fifty-two walks a year, and most of us wouldn’t have to change our lives drastically to do it.

We might think we need to join a gym to get in shape, but what if we started doing morning or evening exercises? Gym memberships are expensive, and if we haven’t figured out how to fit exercise into our already busy lives, fitting the gym in might be difficult. What if we started smaller than a gym membership? What if we started with a yoga mat, stretches, pushups, and plank?

If we want to bring creativity into our lives, could we do something creative once a week? Would we like to write, paint, draw, dance, knit, crochet, sew, quilt, or build something? Could we integrate creativity into our lives once a week?

Sometimes the smallest step in the right direction ends up being the biggest step of your life. Unknown

Would joining a group like Toastmasters elevate our lives? Becoming a better public speaker gives us confidence that will flow into other areas of our lives and might become the catalyst for the change we seek. Most Toastmasters groups meet once a week with a low yearly fee, and we can check out various groups by attending three meetings for free.

Are we reading books, and would we like to read more? Is there a book we would like to be able to say, I’ve read that? Maybe it is the bible or other religious books full of wisdom. There are many templates for reading the bible in a year. What if we decided to read a great book in a year, but it took us two or even five years to get through it from end to end? Would that be a failure, or would it elevate our lives?

Small changes create results if we build on those changes over time. Saving small amounts of money and investing will eventually lead to the compound effect, and small changes in our lives do as well.

Small daily decisions shape our destiny, and those decisions lead us to a better life or a worse one. The compound effect is working in our lives, and small changes throughout our lives can change the trajectory we are heading for. A little exercise every day or every week will pay dividends. Reading every day or every week will pay dividends. Bringing creativity into our lives will pay dividends. What if we make a small positive change in our relationships, and what if we hug those we love more often, smile at them, thank them for doing something for us, or do something for them?

Small changes over time will lead to results. What if we implement small changes in every area of our lives and create the life of our dreams? What if this is our little experiment to see how great we can make the life we have, our relationships, health, wealth, and personal growth?

It’s never the big things… it’s all the little changes you can make in your life that make the difference. Dean Graziosi

Don’t try to overhaul your life overnight. Instead, focus on making one small change at a time. Over time, those small changes will add up to big transformation. Don’t give up! Unknown

You will never change your life until you change something you do daily. The secret of your success is found in your daily routine. John Maxwell

Thank you for reading this post. Please come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, joy, and love.

To subscribe, comment, and see archives or categories of posts, click on the picture and scroll to the end.

Thank you for reading my books, and a special thank you to those who leave a review on Goodreads and Amazon. If you click on the Amazon link and purchase an item, I receive a small percentage of the sale through the Amazon affiliate program.

Life is an adventure, riding the roller coaster of life and making the most of what life brings.

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

Life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all. Helen Keller

If we wonder how we will get everything done, we need to tackle what is most important first. Then, even if everything doesn’t get done, if we get the important things done, it is a good day. If we get all the unimportant things done, but not what was most important, it isn’t such a good day.

Last week, I was getting up at five every day, and by Thursday, I felt like I was coming down with something. A nap in the afternoon, and getting up later on Friday made whatever it was disappear. We need to take care of ourselves because we can’t care for others well if we aren’t in good form.

What if we can have what we want if we know what it is and make it a priority in our lives? Are we setting goals, prioritizing our time, and living the life we want? If we have things we want in life we don’t have yet, what do they look like, and what would it take to get them?

Do we need a life renovation or just a tweak here or there? Is travel one of our goals, where do we want to go, for how long, and what keeps us from booking the ticket? Is there a hobby or interest we would like to bring into our life? Can we start small?

We don’t have control over some of the things we might want in our lives. Other people have to make our dream of becoming a grandparent come true. We aren’t in control of that, but many parts of our lives we do control. By controlling what we can and figuring out what is most important to us we can make the time we have count.

The purpose of life is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experiences. Eleanor Roosevelt

It seems eighty years old is the age when people start doing less, so we need to get to the things we want to do, and the places we want to go before that magical age.

A new year is fast approaching, what goals will we set? Is this the year we… When we look over the year ending did we accomplish what we set out to do? Did we make some special memories and tick something off our bucket list? Do we have a bucket list of things we want to do before we die? Have we written down our dreams so they can become goals and then turn them into reality? Do our goals seem too small or too big, too few, or too many?

Wherever we are on our journey it is time to take stock. What do we want next year to be like? What do we want to be, to have, or do? Is there a big, hairy, audacious goal we have yet to reach? If not, what would that goal look like, what would it take to set an audacious goal? How will it feel if we attain that goal? What goal will we set next?

If we attain the biggest goal we can imagine but don’t have another goal to set we will enjoy the victory but be lost without a new goal. Some goals are so big we never fully attain them like building the best marriage, family, and character, and becoming the kindest, most loving, grateful, and generous person. We can never read all the books; there will always be something to read and learn no matter how old we become.

This is our adventure, what will the next chapter bring? Are we riding the roller coaster of life with curiosity and enthusiasm?

Though we travel the world over to find the beautiful, we must carry it within us or we will find it not. Ralph Waldo Emerson

Adventure isn’t about seeking danger or taking risks; it’s about embracing life with a sense of curiosity and enthusiasm. Unknown

An adventure is only an inconvenience rightly considered. An inconvenience is an adventure wrongly considered. Gilbert K. Chesterton

Thank you for reading this post. Please come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, joy, and love.

To subscribe, comment, and see archives or categories of posts, click on the picture and scroll to the end.

Thank you to everyone who reads my books, and a special thank you to those who leave a review on Goodreads and Amazon. If you click on the Amazon link and purchase an item I receive a small percentage of the sale through the Amazon affiliate program.

Setting goals, a new year is coming, do we need to set new goals?

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

You should set goals beyond your reach so you always have something to live for. Ted Turner

We are almost at the end of the year, and have we accomplished what we set out to do this year? It’s time to start thinking about what we want to make happen in 2024.

I haven’t been as good as I should have been about setting goals over the years, and goals we didn’t set often weren’t achieved. If we aren’t where we want to be in some areas of our life, perhaps it’s because those are the areas we didn’t set goals in. Is it too late to start setting goals? We can have personal goals, financial goals, work goals, travel goals, reading goals, family goals, health and fitness goals, and many other categories of goals. Do we sometimes not set goals because we don’t know where to start, and we don’t want to give ourselves a job of making the goal come true, so instead of working toward a goal we are aimless?

Do we think we’ll feel worse if we set a goal and don’t make it? Missing a goal and evaluating our progress is probably better than not setting a goal at all. Maybe we set too audacious of a goal, maybe we need to break it down into smaller goals, and maybe something changed, and it isn’t our most important goal anymore.

How many of us wish we’d set some financial goals years ago? Is it too late to set those goals now, it’s too late to reap the harvest of seeds we didn’t plant, but is it too late to start planting seeds now and reap a harvest? What would we still like to do, be, have, see, and experience? What is still possible in our lives and we need to be careful we don’t think everything is over for us too soon, what if we live to be one hundred? What can we do in ten, twenty, thirty, forty, fifty, sixty years or more? What if we make every year our best year, it’s the best one because it is the one we are living. It is the one that has the possibilities because we can’t change the past, the future hasn’t come yet, and everything we want to do has to be done in the present.

The trouble with not having a goal is that you can spend your life running up and down the field and never score. Bill Copeland

What if we make it our goal to make the present count? There is so much to do and see, we can’t do it all, but if we set our goals we can do the most important things. We might even find the more we do, the more we can do. We might think our life is too full to add one more thing to it, but if we find something we enjoy we’ll find time to fit it in.

This is what I am finding with knitting. Yesterday my daughter, grandson, and I went to Michaels to pick out yarn for a blanket I’m knitting him for Christmas. He wanted to touch everything, but we got out of the store with an assortment of blue yarns, and this time I’m deciding where the stripes start and finish. The beauty of knitting a blanket for Christmas is the deadline. I have until Christmas Eve to finish it, wrap it, and put it under the tree. I hope he likes it as much as the baby blanket I knit as a baby gift.

We live busy lives, and if we don’t lead busy lives then we sometimes think life is boring. We need to find the happy balance of doing enough, having enough goals, and choosing the right goals when we can’t do everything. When we look back over our lives and we had to give something up for something more important are we happy with our choices? If we made the right choices our lives have probably worked out pretty well.

Sometimes the choice is about two good things, and sometimes it is about making the best of what is, and what can be. If the choices we made were the best for our family then we are probably happy with our choices over the long haul. One of the goals of every parent I think is to set their children up for a good life. That doesn’t mean they won’t have to work for a living or that life will be easy, but we want them to have the tools to build a life they are proud of, and their children will be proud of.

2024 is coming soon, what goals will we set and accomplish? If we meet every goal too easily perhaps we need to set more audacious goals.

The victory of success is half won when one gains the habit of setting and achieving goals. Og Mandino

Focus on the process “Focus on the process more than the goal; goal leads to success or failure, the process leads to the goal.” Ashim Sarmah

If you want to be happy, set a goal that commands your thoughts, liberates your energy, and inspires your hopes. Andrew Carnegie

Thank you for reading this post. Please come back and read some more, and have a blessed day filled with gratitude, joy, and love.

To subscribe, comment, and see archives or categories of posts, click on the picture and scroll to the end.

Thank you for reading my books, and a special thank you to those who leave a review on Goodreads and Amazon. If you click on the Amazon link and purchase an item, I receive a small percentage of the sale through the Amazon affiliate program.

Making the best of the worst, changing what can be changed, and the wisdom to know the difference.

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

In the middle of every difficulty lies opportunity. Albert Einstein

If we are going to be good at something we also have to be a novice at it. We will struggle and make mistakes, we will feel foolish and unskilled, and we might never feel like we’ve mastered the challenge to our satisfaction, and that might be the best way to feel.

There will come a point when our best work is not still ahead of us, but if that point is later in life it might be better for us. It might be best if we go through life and find new challenges. I think of Mom with most of her quilts being created after she turned eighty.

I’m thinking about what challenges I might take on after eighty. It is sobering to become the oldest generation but once our parents pass we become the oldest generation. Do we feel wise enough to be the oldest generation? As we become the oldest generation we are supposed to be wise and forward-looking, depending on our age now, that might happen sooner or later, but if we live a long life it will happen. We will become the patriarch or matriarch in our family.

We will never be ready to take on the mantle but we will rise to the occasion because there is no other choice. We might not be growing up with enough sense of duty, we think our choices only matter to our own lives, but our choices and other people’s choices create the society we live in. If we want a better society better choices have to be made by someone, but if we always expect someone else to make the better choices, and not ourselves, we have no power.

If you can stay positive in a negative situation you win. Anonymous

The only power we have in life is to improve our own life and that of our family, and when everyone improves, society improves. If we do the right thing, other people might choose to do the right thing, but waiting for everyone else to do it first is how nothing changes. This could be picking litter off the street, not dropping it in the first place, or treating others with respect, kindness, and fairness.

We don’t live in a perfect society, and we never will, but do we appreciate how good it is? Can we continue to live in peace and relative harmony without letting the conflicts in the world come between us? Can we continue to build a better society, or do we think the best times were the times of our youth, because it was the best time for us, our whole life was still ahead of us instead of more behind than ahead for many of us.

What we do for the society we live in is not just for us, it is for our children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and even great-great-grandchildren and further down the generations. We are setting up the future for generations to come, it won’t be all good or all bad, and I’m not sure we know which is which.

I pray that one day when I pass the mantle onto my son and daughter, I feel good about where we are and what we’ve done as a society. The sum of the improvements we’ve made and the mistakes at least balance out. Perhaps every generation lives in the best of times and the worst of times. Our challenge is to make the best of the worst, not the worst of the best. This might be the challenge of our lives to make the best of the worst, to improve what can be improved, and to accept what we can’t change.

Never let a bad situation bring out the worst in you. Choose to stay positive and be strong. Unknown

The bad news: Nothing is permanent. The good news: Nothing is permanent. Lolly Daskal

The primary cause of unhappiness is never the situation but your thoughts about it. Eckhart Tolle

Thank you for reading this post. Please come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, joy, and love.

To subscribe, comment, and see archives or categories of posts, click on the picture and scroll to the end.

Thank you to everyone who reads my books, and a special thank you to those who leave a review on Goodreads and Amazon. If you click on the Amazon link and purchase an item, I receive a small percentage of the sale through the Amazon affiliate program.