Stand up for Peace

world peace in public domain

“Never be afraid to raise your voice for honesty and truth and compassion against injustice and lying and greed. If people all over the world…would do this, it would change the earth.”

―    William Faulkner

The following is a rant….it is my little way of speaking out…speaking my mind right or wrong. What follows is no assertion of fact; it is only the opinion of one person: me: SBI.

We the people of this planet have the right to live peaceful lives. So much is lost due to the ravages of war; natural resources and precious lives. This world belongs to us; the people of this planet. We have rights dammit, and damn anyone or anything who tries to deny us our simple peaceful existence.

We the people don’t want war. It is those entities in seats of power; governments and corporations who profit from war. WE the people of this planet only lose out, again and again. This has played out through the centuries.

Those in power want us to believe that there is nothing we can do. They need us to think we are powerless. They know better and use whatever smoke and mirrors to trick us into believing whatever they want/need us to believe..

Don’t believe them. Together we ARE powerful. Together we can make a difference. Together we can change the world! YES we can!

This I believe, this I must believe. What we need is a spark, a spark in the dark that lights a candle, one candle can light countless others. We need to give hope to each other. We need to have faith in each other.

We must learn to see beyond the racial, cultural and religious differences that keep us apart. We are more alike than some may lead us to believe. I have met many special and beautiful people in my life. Stand-out individuals of all colors, creeds and faiths. Our diversity can strengthen us. We need each other, all of humanity is connected and we have so much in common. One of these aspects we share is the need to be loved and to be respected; the need to live a peaceful existence.

To do this we must fight, we must fight their ideas; the ones they cram down our throats. The ideas that say we must to this or do that. The idea that tells us that we must think of our fellow humans as the enemy.

The powers-that-be rule over us by fear. It is a time proven tactic. It has been used many times and it works. Fear leads to misunderstandings. Fear lead to hate and hate leads to war.

War has become big business in this world. To some a human life is insignificant. We cannot tolerate this. We cannot and we must speak out. We must stand up, tall and proud and say NO MORE!

unity earth from moon

We hold the power. We the people of this planet. 

It’s easy to get overwhelmed by all that is happening in the world…. and it’s unfortunate that our world is ruled by the all-mighty dollar.  The haves are distracting the have-nots with trivial bipartisan  nonsense.  This angers people who are frustrated and time and time again, these people lash out…Whether it is a person acting alone, a group or a nation. The world is becoming more dangerous and all we can seem to do is fight-fight-fight. We are proving our unworthiness to exist and our planet is turning us; we are turning on us. This needs to stop.  We as a society need to come together. This is easily said but not easily done. Our governments and media sets the tone.  Big business pulls the strings and calls the shots. We the consumers feed them. On a grassroots level, little by little we need to change this. We need to learn to become less reliant on a system that is not sustainable. This cannot happen overnight but in time we can change our ways.

This greed, this hunger for power and land and resources is the creature that drives this hungry machine. We can no longer depend on a system that created THIS; what we have now….this inflated monster that’s about to pop. It is overstuffed. We have fed it too much… given this machine of commerce too much control over not only our lives but the lives of everyone on this planet…and the planet itself.

Turn off the TV. Don’t BUY it..at least for today. The people have all the real power. LOVE each other. Spread compassion.

Strawberryindigo.

Peace-Signs-Solid-Preview-Full

“Peace has to be created, in order to be maintained. It will never be achieved by  passivity and quietism.”

Dorothy Thompson

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This has been a post inspired by BLOGGERS FOR PEACE. An online movement made up of caring individuals who believe that together we can make a difference! Please join us!  To join just click on the badge below…

bloggers forpeace6

IMAGINE by John Lennon (youtube)

Teaching Peace to Children (stevesthinkingspace.wordpress.com)

The Art of Peace (bodhisattvaintraining.wordpress.com)

The Sea of Humanity (strawberryindigo.wordpress.com)

The Ascending Spiral of Love (spiritualworldtravelerblog.com)

Power to Change the World (donettas.wordpress.com)

Meditation to achieve global peace on Independence Day 2013 (8485 people needed!) (planet.infowars.com)

5 Solutions to Change the World (saunsea.wordpress.com)

Inner Peace is World Peace (southweb.org)

Nobel winners to discuss peace (belfasttelegraph.co.uk)

The BLOG

Chimpanzee_seated_at_typewriter

 

“As things stand now, I am going to be a writer. I’m not sure that I’m going to be a good one or even a self-supporting one, but until the dark thumb of fate presses me to the dust and says ‘you are nothing’, I will be a writer.”

Hunter S. Thompson,

For every blogger, there is a seemingly “normal” looking person who lives, works and dreams out there in the “real” world. We who write and create and share exist mostly under assumed names beneath a cover of unknownness and anonymity. We come in all shapes and sizes, under a rainbow of colors and experiences, faiths and nationalities. We are a varied group indeed whose representatives span the globe bringing such diverse and wonderous ideas, thoughts, knowledge and wisdom.

We all have one aspect in common; the need/want desire..compulsion even, to share what we know, what we learn and what we experience with others. We yearn to reach out in friendship and understanding through a mutual curiosity of each other and the greater diversity of humankind. We are storytellers and poets, artists and dreamers. We are lovers of life and all its wonders…we are compelled to do this…and most of us do it for free.

I know how much work you put into your blog. It is obvious the time and attention that is put into such a production. There is a love here, at least a sort of affection and there is a degree of satisfaction in having completed another post and pressing “Publish”. I can imagine how it may feel after writing a whole book! Wow! It feels good to create, to put something out there into such a world that does exist beyond oneself.

It would be nice to get paid for this…I mean really nice and great and wonderful and all that, but I’d write anyway…money or not…

SHINY HAPPY PEOPLE
SHINY HAPPY PEOPLE

We are a curious lot, we bloggers…at least I can speak for myself.   I’m sure by now anyone who has been here before and will surely attest to the fact that I am different…and proud…and I do think many of us would admit to being at least a little  odd, a bit unusual,  more colorful or just plain strange.

I have found in communicating with a diverse group in this community of ours, that we tend to be thoughtful and intelligent…most of us seem to care about other people and the world around them. I have found most to be independently minded.

I feel like a have a secret identity. There is Nancy, the soft-spoken , shy and quiet type and there’s opinionated and preachy Strawberryindigo who is sometimes full of herself but sometimes discovers sweet little colorful burst of brilliance along the way. THAT one. We are one and the same but different. SBI is more outgoing and friendly…SBI is  more sure of herself…Nancy is a chicken. I sometimes think to myself…I wonder “what SBI would do in this situation?” Sometimes I’ll take the advice and at other times I don’t have the guts.

World-Vintage-Lingerie-Ads

It’s a strange duality and I wonder how many of us think along the same lines. There is a degree of voluntary anonymity here and this is freeing…

I sometimes wonder how others deal with this duality in the real world. I was wondering if many of you tell others about your blog? My immediate family knows, some cousins and a few friends know but mostly I keep the whole thing to myself. I have told a couple  co workers, and a few chance acquaintances; I feel this probably wasn’t the best idea. It seemed to be more of a confession than a proud proclamation……the words would just tumble out of me…”I have a blog” out of the blue..  Most recipients of this vitally important news have gotten a look of indigestion tinged with subtle boredom flicker across their faces and that they are secretly hoping I won’t ask them to “see” it..

I don’t know…what do you say? How do you say it? I feel funny about it and so I haven’t told many people..

MonkeySeeHearSpeakNoEvil

I think there are some preconceived notions some may have about bloggers, creative types and writers in general,.I’ve noticed that, and it’s probably my imagination, but some people hold back after they know you are a writer that..it’s as if they think I will write secrets and unflattering words about them in some tell all book I’ll write in the future. Even MM, my beloved and charming adventure companion has accused me of planning to commit such an act….

…no wonder he’s always on his best behavior…

Like I said there are certain little joys to this “busyness”….

Beautiful yum

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From time to time I will see a seemingly normal looking person or people taking pictures of absolutely ordinary things; buildings, trees, reindeer signs,  beautiful chocolate desserts…and I smile wide knowing he or she is a comrade in arms.

I don’t feel so strange snapping close up shots of bumblebees on irises in the parking lot at work or whippping out the camera at the grocery store…I must admit that I do enjoy sprawling out on the neighbors lawn in order to get that perfect shot underneath the leafy tree branches…

I feel like I am a part of a greater whole….a larger community…made up of people who like to share of themselves and their lives even if that means taking pictures of food in a restaurant or down at the market or whatever and writing about it…to me this is fun stuff and I bet to many of you…

There is a certain peacefulness to the whole practice…snapping snipplets of life and then write a bit about it, put it online and it comes back to life; just like that…and then these little snippets, these pieces of life of hopes, dreams, thoughts and ideas that  in the past before this technology would have stayed hidden in the dark corners of obscurity…like shooting stars…these little snippets can be set free to wander the virtual global community….later to be picked up like a bottle on the beach by a random beachcomber perhaps on the other side of the world…

This is almost akin to magic and there are treasures out there if one just looks….

Have you ever noticed that bloggers like to write a lot about blogging and that other bloggers like to read about it?  What this accomplishes, I don’t know..perhaps it’s just nice to belong….

Wishing you well on this rainy end of an all too short weekend…

Strawberryindigo.

Strawberry

How does it feel to be one of these bloggerful people? 

  How have your experiences in this virtual world affected you?

Changed you? enhanced your life? or otherwise?

Let me know “How does it Feel to be a Blogger?”  

kissing the troops vintage

Great writers are indecent people

they live unfairly

saving the best part for paper.

good human beings save the world

so that bastards like me can keep creating art,

become immortal.

if you read this after I am dead

it means I made it.”

Charles Bukowski

 

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Blogging Neophite (chillkulit.wordpress.com)

Bloggers & Authors….. (divasdailybookblog.wordpress.com)

5 Great Ideas for Your Next Blog Post (inkpenquill.wordpress.com)

10 Things You Should Know About Bloggers (aspiringwriter22.wordpress.com)

Scribbles from a little blue notebook… (strawberryindigo.wordpress.com)

TAG Tripper

TAG! You are IT!
TAG! You are IT!

Niaaeryn from Gateways and Musings, a compatriot in the adventures of blogging has engaged me in a virtual twist on a school yard favorite: Tag. This particular game involves no running for which I am grateful. It does however come with some rules which I may or may not adhere to. The rules are as follows:

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1.Post the rules.
2.Post a photo of yourself.
3.Post eleven random facts about you.
4.Questions were created for you by the person who tagged you. Answer the questions.
5.Tag several people.
6.Create eleven new questions for those that you have tagged.
7.Go to their blog/twitter and let them know that they have been tagged.

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I really like Niaaeryn. She is a wonderful person and her questions were so intriguing I felt I had to participate. Here is the post in which you can read all the “horrible” details as to how I was tagged.

Strawberryindigo in Spring
Strawberryindigo in Spring

The questions that I answered:

1.How long have you been blogging? I have been blogging since August of 2011. It seems like only yesterday. I am constantly learning and I owe much of that new knowledge to my wonderful blogging friends who are wonderfully wise. I am so lucky!
2.What made you start blogging? I have spent much of my life misunderstood and basically alone in a crowd. I have made it no secret that I am Asperger’s. In real life I am a social misfit. It seems at times I have two left feet in that regard. I have always written since I was old enough to grip a pencil. It has always been my outlet. Until I started blogging I kept everything to myself as I was afraid of what others would think of my strange and colorful personality. Since that time I have really come out of my shell! I was welcomed with open arms by this community of bloggers. I feel I can truly be myself here.  I have  received support and friendship here. Blogging has saved me and I am committed to helping others and spreading the light I have received. As crazy as it sounds, I believe it is my calling to help others with my writing.
3.What essential item do you carry with you at all times? HAHA…I carry a camera, of course. I am always snapping shots wherever I go. I have learned to ignore the funny looks and I always notice I am not the only one doing this. Whenever I see someone taking “unusual” photos I know it’s a comrade in arms!
4.If you could meet a famous person, who would it be and why?  George Clooney. I refuse to say why and please don’t tell MM.

tag president-obama-actor-george-clooney-whitehouse-s2001
President Obama discusses Strawberryindigo with actor and activist George Clooney during a meeting at the White House

5.Who is your favorite author? It’s hard to pick just one. I suppose my favorite is Jared Diamond. I am a compulsive learner and I just can’t get enough of the guy. I wish he could produce more but in all fairness it would be impossible given the material. I would recommend his books to anyone who likes non-fiction that explains why we humans are the way we are. I have learned an immense amount from him and to me that means a lot.

6.If a chicken was crossing the road, would you ask it why it was crossing or would you just set back and watch it cross the road taking in the moment? Why did you choose as you did? I would definitely watch the chicken and take pictures with my handy-dandy camera. Then I would probably write about it and lament that I was too chicken to ask this chicken for an interview. (I am quite shy but I am working on that.)

why-chicken-crossed-the-road
The question is not “WHY?” it’s “WHY NOT?”

7.What was your favorite show when you were a kid? I would have to say the original Star Trek. I have seen every single one. I identify with Mr. Spock. We have much in common, that Vulcan and I.

star-trek-spock1
LIVE LONG AND PROSPER

8.What is your favorite thing to cook? I know this may horrify some of you but honestly, I like to cook anything with bacon and many of my self-made recipes include the saturated-fatty nitrate packed meat product.

9.What is your favorite genre of literature? Science Fiction is my favorite genre especially from the 50’s and 60’s.I have literally read hundreds of Sci-Fi books although I mostly stick to non-fiction now.

sci fi classics
10.What is your favorite genre of writing? Creative non fiction which I attempt to mostly do.
11. If you had a million dollars—not strings and taxes were already taken out—what would you do?   I would probably take a portion of it and save it for the future, taking some of that and investing it in a diversified portfolio of fixed and variable mutual funds. ( I used to work in that industry, so I have some good ideas about that.) I would purchase a modest house. I don’t need much. Someplace with a big yard. I would go back to school and probably major in Journalism and minor in Botany..And after that I would get to the important stuff like starting some charities. I would definitely do something for autistic people, something that lets them express themselves with art. I would buy up some virgin land and not touch it; keeping it from development. I would also like to buy land in the city and make community gardens and/or farms so people, especially low-income people, could grow their own healthy food. I would support teaching young people about the land and nature and why our planet is so important. I guess I would have more causes than money at that point. That is why I’d write about what I was doing I encourage others to contribute.  (Obviously I have given this a lot of thought.)

community-garden-thanks-to-green-guerillas
Community-garden-thanks-to-green-guerillas

Whew….enough about me…I suppose I am breaking some rules here because by now I am so entirely sick of myself and you probably are too so I am skipping the whole random facts about me part. Use your wild imaginations here my friends….. Now it is my turn to ask some questions…

  1. How did you come up with your blogging name?
  2. if you could travel to an imaginary place what would it be?
  3. If you could change one thing about yourself what would it be?
  4. Do you have a favorite posession? What is it and why is it dear to you?
  5. What was your favorite subject in school?
  6. What is your earliest memory?
  7. Could you pass a FBI check?
  8. Can you juggle or perform any sort of circus act?
  9. What is your deepest fear?
  10. What was your first job?
  11. Do you hate answering stupid nosy questions?

I don’t want to put anyone on the spot; anyone and everyone who is reading this and who wants to participate, please do so.  I welcome it! You are so fascinating and I’d LOVE to know more about you. I guess I am asking you to tag yourself which could be quite a spectacle but being bloggers here maybe some of you may choose to make a spectacle of yourself. (I certainly encourage that sort of activity) Please be my guest and break the rules, I love rule breakers. If you choose to participate make it your own. Whoever does play, please provide a link to this post and I will include a link to yours. I will also promote your post on Twitter (you can opt out on that) and if enough people respond I will do an entire post praising your glories and what I know will make an interesting read.

So how about it? Anyone up for a game??

tag Happy_Children

Let me know, I’ll be around.

Strawberryindigo.

Strawberry

CHECK THIS OUT!!!   THE TAGGED ONES–

(Thanks for playing along)

1. It Is Meme Time!!  By Karen H. (menopausediaries.wordpress.com)

2.Just Tagging Along   By Sparkyleegeek   (sparkyleegeek.wordpress.com)

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Day Tripper By The Beatles (You Tube)  For years I thought they were singing “Tag Tripper” hence the title of this post.  I’m such an idiot sometimes!

A New Newness

Max station at sunrise
Credit: SBI

It is dark and cold. The moon is a perfect crescent just hanging there in the very early morning sky as a reminder that the night is not through with its hold. I am standing at the train station, my new mint green travel mug is in my hand warming it and filling me with hot Jasmine tea. I look around at my fellow commuters. It is Monday and their faces seem to reflect that. I see many yawns and tired eyes.
I am, on the other hand, grinning like a banshee. I couldn’t be more awake. I am on my way to my new job and it is the first day. I’m sure in time I will become as lackluster as these poor other souls here; shivering in the cold, dark and lonely train station at 6:13 a.m., but for now I am too excited and definately much too grateful to do anything but wear a smile as wide as the sky.
The job hunt took longer than I thought and I don’t have to tell anyone that times are harder than they used to be. I am looking forward to getting a reliable income. Despite my extra long commute, I can’t help but appreciate this opportunity that I have been given.
I’m sure that you remember me complaining about money being tight in the past but now things will ease up a bit. I couldn’t be happier about it. I think the economy is turning a slow and steady corner and my good fortune is a sign of that.
I am taking the train. In reality it’s called the MAX. It is a light rail that will transport me to a faraway land called Beaverton. I am leaving my comfort zone of good old Portland for the sprawl of suburbia.

Credit: SBI
Credit: SBI

The commute is long but it will give me a chance to think, scribble in my little blue notebook which I am doing now and catch up on my reading. I am glad that I had the opportunity of working at home in the past but I am also just as glad that I am able to work out of the home now. My children are growing up; they don’t need me as much and I need to get out into the real world. I’ve lived somewhat of a sheltered life and to be a decent writer one needs to be somewhat worldly….for now my expanded world includes Beaverton, but this is not forever. I am even more determined than ever to make a go of at as a professional writer.
I am probably telling you all of this because I won’t be able to visit you as much as I’d like, at least for now….I will be doing most of my visiting on the weekends and some nights and playing catch up as I’m sure many of you do already.
I think my frivolous activities such as tweeting and playing Scrabble online will have to be toned done a bit but I will make blogging a priority. My writing and contacts with you are important to me and that won’t change even if as I take on the wilds of Beaverton and slowly become a corporate killer….haha. really…I’m just a grunt in an office. The job that I really wanted at the nursery was not offered to me and I had to go back to what I am experienced in which is office work., oh well. I guess one must do what one must do.

Credit: SBI
Credit: SBI

I am fortunate enough to be able to work in a nice place that is in the middle of a natural like area with shrubs, trees and fields of green. Just the other day I spied a hummingbird on my break; so things could be worse. I am thinking of it as an adventure and I am very grateful for the opportunity.

I’m sure I will have much to share with you over the coming months…

Have an excellent day!

Strawberryindigo.

“In response to those who say to stop dreaming and face reality, I say keep dreaming and make reality.” 
~Kristian Kan

big-blue-skies1.jpg

“Perserverence is a great element of success. If you only knock long enough and loud enough at the gate, you are sure to wake up somebody.” 

~Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Weekly Photo Challenge: There Goes My Neighborhood   (picturesinlivingcolor.wordpress.com)

Fresh Quotes PEACE March

peace sign in public domain

There is a movement afoot called Bloggers for Peace. It is a crazy dream started by my friend Kozo from Everyday Guru’s. Kozo is a big-hearted person who believes that we can achieve this dream of living life in peace. I happen to agree and the more people involved the better. This blogging for peace is growing and growing and with every post published, we inch our way closer and closer to achieving this seemingly farfetched goal.  It had to start somewhere and Kozo wasn’t the first person to yearn for peace and he won’t be the last. Perhaps this is futile after all, but peace is a beautiful song and the more people who sing it the more beautiful it becomes and all the more powerful.

Please join us. Add your wonderful voice, let it be heard. All that is asked of you is devote your talents and energies to at least one post a month for peace. The details are here.

So in honor of Peace. I thought this month’s helping of Fresh Quotes would be devoted to this lovely cause.

Much happiness to you my friends, 

Strawberryindigo.

Life is beautiful!
Life is beautiful!

“Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without.”
~Buddha~

Flower Power
Flower Power

“I offer you peace. I offer you love. I offer you friendship. I see your beauty. I hear your need. I feel your feelings.”

~Mahatma Gandhi~

Sgt. Shane Pudgett hugs his wife goodbye as his son, Bryce, age 5, sheds a tear.
Sgt. Shane Pudgett hugs his wife goodbye as his son, Bryce, age 5, sheds a tear.

“Peace cannot be kept by force; it can only be achieved by understanding.”
~Albert Einstein

Peace + Love=Happiness
Peace + Love=Happiness

“Imagine all of us living in peace, it’s too beautiful to just be a dream.”
~John Lennon~

We can all do our part!
We can all do our part!

“It isn’t enough to talk about peace. One must believe in it. And it isn’t enough to believe in it. One must work at it.”

~Eleanor Roosevelt~

The faces of War
The faces of War

What can you do to promote world peace? Go home and love your family.”
~Mother Teresa

PEACE is the word
PEACE is the word

“Lord, make me an instrument of thy peace. Where there is hatred, let me sow love.”

~Francis of Assisi~

Just say "NO!"
Just say “NO!”

NEVER GIVE UP…No matter what is going on…Never give up…Develop the heart… Too much energy in your country…Is spent developing the mind…Instead of the heart… Be compassionate…Not just to your friends…But to everyone…Be compassionate …Work for peace…In your heart and in the world…Work for peace…And I say again…Never give up…No matter what is going on around you…Never give up”

~Dalai Lama

Our future lies in the heart of a child
Our future lies in the heart of a child

” If we are to teach real peace in this world, and if we are to carry on a real war against war, we shall have to begin with the children.”
~Mahatma Gandhi~

bloggers forpeace6
Click to join!

Related Peaceful Articles

**The post that started it all**

****We can make a difference right here right now (everydaygurus.com)****

Monthly Peace Challenge: Marching towards Forgiveness (everydaygurus.com)

Sharing Some More Thoughts (Inspirational) On “The War For Peace” (peacepursuit.wordpress.com)

Bloggers for Peace on Facebook (facebook.com)

The Peace Garden (picturesinlivingcolor.wordpress.com) **My other blog**

B4Peace – February (sarahneeve.wordpress.com)

 Living My Dream: I will fight for you people (summer4soul.wordpress.com)

PEACE is Possible (strawberryindigo.wordpress.com)

Peace & Love Are Eternal… (spiritualworldtravelerblog.com)

Spiritual Peace (motherwifestudentworker.wordpress.com)

Peace-peace-and-love-revolution-club-25246170-1500-1050

A Heartfelt THANK YOU!

festive christmas

Christmas is almost upon us and I feel this is the perfect opportunity to extend a heartfelt thanks to everyone who has liked my work, especially those of you who have graced my blog with your intelligent comments. Your feedback has been invaluable to me.

I am blessed to have such an amazing array of regular visitors from all over the world. I have learned so much from your wisdom and thoughtfulness. You have welcomed me with open arms and open minds and I am so fortunate to know you.

When I started this blog back in August of 2011 I was desperate and alone; friendless and misunderstood, you befriended and understood me. I have learned I can be myself here. That is very precious to me as I am a sensitive soul who has hidden this aspect of myself for as long as I can remember.

I had just learned of my Asperger’s and that set the tumblers in motion that has brought me here today: pouring my soul out in words that I wouldn’t dare to say to myself or even acknowledge, let alone write down for the whole world to see.

Because I hid from the world, alone in the shadows, afraid of everything…even people. Yes, I admit it here and now to you that most of my entire life I have been afraid of people; afraid to show my strange self to anyone, not even those closest to me.

I spent a good many years in an alcoholic daze “brave-facing” the world with a drunken defiant smile all the while hiding myself behind a hard steel wall of my own creation. It wasn’t until I discovered my Asperger’s that it finally dawned that I didn’t have to be alone anymore. This started my writing, first on a small blog on an Asperger’s website then a few months later in this blog. I choose the name “My Life in Color” because at the time I thought that I would write solely about my life on the spectrum to give others a chance to perhaps understand someone like me because I wanted/needed desperately to be understood.  I was ashamed of this and embarrassed that I didn’t have any real friends just drinking buddies who never knew me because I never let them. I never let anyone know me, even my own family.

It was the fear I hid behind: The fear of rejection, of ridicule, of others knowing what was really going on inside of me; how different I was. I hardly ever spoke to anyone.  I just kept writing in my little notebooks and reading and learning. Words were my friends, you see and I knew somewhere deep down in my buried heart that words would someday save me–if I would only have to courage to let those words see the light of day.

But I lacked the confidence, until only recently I had no confidence at all or courage or anything of merit.  I just existed and waited for what…I didn’t know, but I do know now. I waited for this; for a chance to be myself: hidden behind a facade of a fake name and the belief that no one would be reading my stuff anyway. The first month or so no one did, not many anyway, but one by one you came and you told me good things about me. You told me I was a good writer. You encouraged me.  You understood me and you didn’t laugh at me or make me feel small. I don’t know why, but you kept coming and reading and commenting. Some of you for everything I wrote–everything.  You didn’t mind that it sometimes takes me many days to return your comments. You didn’t mind if I didn’t make it to your sites all the time.  You just kept returning and as the months came and went some of you called me friend and then after a while I had to courage to call you friend because I’ve learned about friendship from you and this is spilling out into my offline life. I have the courage now; the courage to look others in the eye and smile and say “I’m really glad to see you” and really mean it. This is because of you my friends.  You saw something in me that I could never see before and I cannot truly convey how much I appreciate this.

This is like magic to me and now because of you and your kindness and acceptance of me I can finally see beyond myself to you and to others.  I have found that I am not so different after all and there are many people in the world who too are alone, even in a crowd as I was. There are a great many people who just want to be understood and to hear someone say ” I care and you matter”

It means so much to me when you say I’ve brightened your day or made you think or smile or even laugh. I didn’t know I could be funny. I didn’t know I could be anything or anyone at all.

You my friends have given me this gift and what a precious one it is, more valuable than gold and it is a gift that keeps on giving because if there is anything I do in this life it will be paying this gift back to anyone and everyone that needs it….and there are so many and I think really, sometimes we all do.

This desire goes beyond my dream to become a writer someday, this silly pipe dream to become the next J.K Rowling. That is nothing. Money is nothing. Notoriety is nothing. I am not alone anymore and that is something and that is because of you!

You have saved me and that is why I am thanking you.

nancy with caffeine another copy

Thank you my friends and HAPPY CHRISTMAS!

Nancy

Mario wishes you a happy hoilday too!
Mario wishes you a happy holiday too!

In Search of Good News

I have been finding myself in deep thought as of late. Time has slowed down for me and that has given ample time for refection. At first this made me depressed, as life has been throwing some major curveballs that have been hitting me right in the face. As I looked around I found more and more depressed people…angry people, the worn out and the frightened. This only confirmed my suspicions that the world is going to hell and really anyone can see that. Some even think the end is coming. It certainly does appear that way…while I don’t think the end is near, I do think it is changing…and fast.

I think it can be unsettling to people…the conditions of the world today; the world at large and the world right down the street. It is overwhelming and it overwhelms. I don’t need to list it all here, besides being a significant undertaking it just spreads the contagion.

Contagion

Yes, I do think it’s a contagion, this crazy despair. The media feeds it with sensationalism. I can’t blame them, that is what they do and I suppose they are doing a fair job of distracting us from what’s really important…and there is much to be distracted by.

I feel a prevading sense of desperation…and fear in the air. It seems people on the whole are less hopeful for the future. It takes effort not to get caught up in it.  Is this how it feels to live in a civilization that’s in decline?

This I cannot accept….I feel the helplessness, the creeping unease, the feeling that you are in a boat with a hole in it and you better start bailing before the water gets any higher.  There are a good many souls on this boat, this “ship of fools”. And while we point the finger at each other and squabble over nonsense, the ship is going down. We know it….we can feel it sinking…we can see the now blatant obvious signs.

I want to hide in my garden, among the birds and the bees and the flowers and the trees and think lovely thoughts…I want to write beautiful words and pour my soul out on paper but the unease grows.

I pace and look out the window and a million ideas run through my mind; the good….the bad …and everything in between …. I try to record them all but they spill out into a pile on the floor and it becomes hard to focus.

Until I write and write and write. This unease disappears and I feel that in my own miniscule little way I am doing something.

I have been talking to people, some very smart people and I have been given all sorts of advice but one piece has struck a chord in me. At first it seemed so simple but as my mind ruminated on it the more I came to understand the deeper aspects.

I complain about the media and spreading the contagion of negativity and sensationalism.  I lament: “Where is all the good news?” Surely there are people out there doing good things…somewhere.   I ask, and rather loudly: “Why aren’t we hearing about good news?”  It can get depressing to hear all this doom and gloom…

And as I lament, a wise person mentions that in some small (very small) way that I, strawberryindigo, the blogger, am a part of this same media that I, Nancy, the person complains about and then she asks me:

 “Where is your good news?”

This has permeated me ever since…

…And it was there  that I stopped. That was about 3 months ago. I stopped because I was literally stopped in my tracks. This revelation set me back and it was this that told me to abandon everything I had written and focus on some happiness instead. It is easy to share one’s despair but it takes work to share happiness especially when you are not happy yourself. The world is unhappy enough for me to add my misery so, I chose not to finish or publish the above words at that time.

…and really, I didn’t have an answer…I still don’t in all honesty…but I’m looking all the time and I’m finding that sometimes it’s not the world that’s the trouble, it’s the way I’m looking at it.  I lament: where is the good news? where can I find this mythical land of good news.. and then like a flash of lighting it hits me.

It’s been here all along.  The good news is everywhere. It is all around.  I just needed to open my eyes…

 I found the following quote:

“Do your little bit of good where you are; its those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world.”
Desmond Tutu

Inspiring words to be sure. Simple and true and sometimes forgotten. I guess I needed reminding…

Goodness can come in many shapes and sizes and good can come from the oddest of places. I am finding the more I look for it,  the more I see. 

What I am finding so amazing is that this goodness typically starts out small, so small and slight that most of the time it goes unnoticed. These seemingly small gestures we do for each other from time to time, tiny interactions between strangers… there’s magic in these tiny incidents. This grows and spreads like a contagion.  We hardly ever hear of these small incidents of good, they are not sensational or exciting. Mostly they are mundane and seemingly unimportant but they can be quite beautiful.

All are important and important enough, in my opinion to acknowledge and tell others about it. This is the stuff of inspiration, this is the good news that I seek.

From time to time I will be sharing pieces of good news; real life stories from inspirational people I meet or hear about. I will be sharing with you happenings and events, tiny miracles and good things as I try to do a little spreading of my own.

                                            

 I have come to appreciate simple acts of kindness more and more.  I have found that we all need some kindness now and then, and in places we’d never expect we’d be. I am impressed by this sort of thing and I believe it is good news that needs to be shared.

♥      ♥      ♥      ♥      ♥      ♥      ♥      ♥      ♥      ♥      ♥

Have any good news to share? Please let me know, better yet write a post about it and let others know too. Let’s spread some good news!

Peace and Happiness to YOU

Strawberryindigo.

GREAT


GREAT WALL of China
Credit: pingnews

“Because of a great love, one is courageous.”

Lao Tzu

Have you ever been stuck on a word? Have you ever used one particular word so frequently that it caused you any worry? Have strangers mocked you using that word in a public place?  If you have answered any of these questions with the word Yes, you must be like me and I am not so alone in my cheap and tawdry word addiction.

I’ll admit it right here and now. I will shout it to the rooftops…” I am Strawberryindigo and I am a wordaholic–my tonic of choice, my vice, the object of my obsession: the word “GREAT”

HAHA…  It is probably of no surprise to you; my overuse and abuse of the word.   It litters my posts and certainly my comments. You are so very nice not to mention this. You may have asked yourself at one time or another…How many times can one person say “Great Post”?

I’ll admit and everyone knows that Great is a great word. (That is why it is called that, duh) If there is any word to over depend on it is this word, this great word. It is positive and it is versatile. To me it sounds strong and certain of it’s place in the whole scheme of things.

I can’t help but think  too much of a good thing (or great word can be just that: too much.

GREAT WHITE SHARK
Image by © David Fleetham/Visuals Unlimited/Corbis

I know what you’re thinking right now… How can I be so impossibly brave? I ask myself that too. Perhaps it is the writer in me yearning to break free of the confines of convention? Maybe I grow bored with my limited palate of words? It could be that if I am to be any kind of writer at all I must extend my vocabulary.  Great just isn’t cutting it.

So I am asking you a favor…Please if you see me or hear me use that word–you know the word–THAT word, let me know in no uncertain terms that I am being a weak overdependent hack. Tell me this, I deserve it. We will all be better off this way.

Besides…

GREAT SMOKY MOUNTAINS

There are so many words I can use instead: Words such as…

abundant, ample, big, big league, bulky, bull, colossal, considerable, decided, enormous, excessive, extended, extensive, extravagant, extreme, fat, gigantic, grievous, high, huge, humongous, husky, immense, inordinate, jumbo, lengthy, long, major league, mammoth, mondo, numerous, oversize, prodigious, prolonged, pronounced, protracted, strong, stupendous, terrible, titanic, towering, tremendous, vast, voluminousable, absolute, aces, adept, admirable, adroit, awesome, bad*, best, brutal, cold*, complete, consummate, crack*, downright, dynamite, egregious, exceptional, expert, fab, fantastic, fine, first-class*, first-rate, good, heavy*, hellacious, marvelous, masterly, number one, out of sight, out of this world, out-and-out, perfect, positive, proficient, super-duper, surpassing, terrific, total, tough, transcendent, tremendous, unmitigated, unqualified, utter, wonderful

GREAT PYRAMID OF GIZA
WISHING YOU AN UTTERLY SUPER-DUPER DOWNRIGHT EXCEPTIONAL DAY!!!

Weekly writing challenge: The Sound of Blogging

I saw the headline: The Sound of Blogging. As if there was such a thing…but there is and it’s music to my ears  This is my first stab at the WordPress Weekly Writing Challenge and I want to make a decent showing. This idea made me stop and ponder a bit. I enjoy stopping and pondering. I think it is essential for a writer and me, in my long-winded way, am a writer, as most of us bloggers are.

I have mentioned a few times in the past the sound I make as I write; a rhythmic tap-tap-tap. It is how I describe what I do; it is in fact a sort of 4 finger quick-step, hunt and peck that has evolved into the tap-tap-tap. It starts slow then picks up speed and before you know it, I am going on at full clip. Not to say that my technique doesn’t need improvement. I will be the first to admit to that, but all in all it is a comforting sound.

When my family hears this tinkling of the computer keys they know that I am happy, they’ll get no trouble out of me. As long as the hot coffee flows I am content to be tap-tap-tapping the night away; writing my heart out.

I let the words flow like a melody that sings a song about hope and inspiration, compassion, kindness and how the power of love; the love of our planet and for our fellow humans can transform the world.   It is the song of life played out by a hack with a laptop and a dream that I hear in my tap tap tapping…and to me it’s the loveliest sound in the universe.

Thanks for listening,

Strawberryindigo.

While you’re at it check out those sounds…

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(Excellent music I like to tap to)

MASTERS OF STRING THEORY

An instrumental  journey through time on a string played by some the greats.

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Click here for some excellent tapping courtesy of The Nicolas Brothers

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The Typewriter Song

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Mr. Bojangles tapping with Shirley Temple

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Nothing

I have countless notebooks jam-packed full of ideas and subjects to write about. I have  been blessed/cursed with an active imagination. So I’m sitting here thinking about what’s next, I must feel passionately about the subject at hand or the words don’t flow, it becomes strained and forced and there is no point to writing anything at all. Fortunately this rarely happens and when it does I just walk away and do something else. The time has to be right….

…and so this very afternoon I lament this to MM;  He has a gift for making my complicated little life dilemmas into simple bite-sized pieces that can be easier to chew but sometimes not so easy to digest..

I remarked in passing how I felt like writing (Ha, big surprise) but that I didn’t know what about. Currently I’m in a layed-back Sunday mood although it is a Tuesday, it feels like it anyway. It is cloudy and cool and I am listening to some soft melodic guitar music. The coffee is hot and it’s black and I shouldn’t be drinking it but what the hell it’s Sunday…I mean Tuesday and life is too short…

…and so I am sitting here and I lament all this to MM.

Have I mentioned what a wise person he is? Well this wise person suggests that I should write about nothing….  At times I  have foolishly resisted his advice but today I’m taking it.

This may sound a bit difficult to write about nothing but I am always up to a challenge like that. So as MM carefully crept out the door and down the hallway and I, like a dog with a bone, set out to write about my just found obsession: Nothing.

I know that MM knows I will be tapping along for a while; at least 400 or so words at a stretch. He knows I can’t help myself and that I will be distracted with this very thing: Nothing.

And as I’m tapping along MM goes and does the dishes…without my knowledge, under my very nose…he’s like that you know. (sorry ladies, he’s taken)

And so, as this wonderfully lazy day goes on with me writing and pondering the deepest philosophical mysteries about nothing. MM has the satisfaction of knowing he’s doing a good deed all the while pulling one over on me in the process…

..and me? I’m going for my second cup of coffee….

Strawberryindigo.

The Diary of a Mad Blogger DAY 366

Madness

It has been 366 days since I published my first post and joined this wonderful world of the real and the surreal: the blogosphere. 

 I started this blog on a lark with no real idea or theme.  No organization or any kind of plan whatsoever. I was new to cyberspace and not technical in the least bit, fortunately, I can usually find some humor at my feeble attempts to do something, which can be often.  I still have trouble with the simplest things and the fact that I refer to these things as “things” is a testimony to my utter and complete lack of any technical knowledge whatsoever.  The road is long and strange but slowly I am learning.  Now after a year I am finally able to post a link without embarrassing myself ( I hope) 

On Being Fruity and Colorful

I did realise when I signed up to get a blog here at WordPress that I might be introducing myself to the strange and unusual world of cyberspace and I did have my reservations.  I considered many types of avatars and had decided on a purple nebula (really) and it was not until the last-minute I decided on using my real life image.   I am not one for pictures of myself. It takes some getting used to, but it’s me and it’s honest and that is what I try to adhere to.

I know what you are thinking:  How honest is someone who claims to be some weird name like Strawberryindigo?  It was a name I came up with for Trip Advisor and I just kept using it. If I knew then what I knew now I wouldn’t have picked something so…well, weird. In the beginning many people thought I had a food blog and kept searching my site for recipes.

But again I guess it’s me…and I like colors and fruit and so…what the hell, I could have done worse.

I feel free to write whatever I want. I feel I can expose my inner self by being somewhat anonymous. One day I may change my name, and my site.  Totally scrap the whole thing and start anew, but for now, I’m doing fine just being fruity and colorful.

A Community of Creatives

What I didn’t realise when I signed up to WordPress was the rich community of bloggers that I would become a part of.  It is refreshing to be around so many alive and creative people.   I value each comment and every “like” I have received. It does the heart good to see many of you returning again and again. I  look forward to our visits. I can imagine us as neighbors chatting over the back fence.  I am getting to know many of you through your blogs and comments and I have found you all to be some truly wonderful and amazing people. I have learned so much from you. This is a fantastic little community we are creating here.  I thank you for this!

  Typically, I am a  very shy and reserved person.  In the past I’ve mostly kept my thoughts to myself.   Through my writing here I feel connected to a whole world.  I am coming out of the shadows and into the light…..and it feels spectacular!

The Mad Blogging Part

I started this as a sort of online diary that quickly morphed into something else…just what that is, I do not know.  (If anyone has any thoughts on this please let me know because I am sort of all over the place.)   I guess what I’m attempting here is to train myself to be a writer.  A real writer.  Not just some hack with a laptop and a dream as I perceive myself to be now.  It is my life’s goal to succeed at this endeavor. I have found through trial and error that nothing makes me happier.  It is the air that I breathe and it is engrained in my very essence.  After many years of soul-searching;  it is what I believe I am meant to do.  I know this sounds grandiose and stupid and highly unlikely but I want to somehow make the world a little better because of my writing, if only in some small way…

I started this all as an experiment with the time period of one year. I wanted to see what a year of blogging would do and what I would become after all this….

…and I have found that I’m still in the act of becoming…

I will continue to blog. It’s in my blood now and I don’t want that to change. As my writing continues to evolve I will keep at it, I can’t stop anyway. Writing is essential to my existence. My plans are to eventually start submitting my work and see where that goes but I know that I still have some work to do–my journey continues.

Looking forward to day 367…

Strawberryindigo.

I want to let you know that I will probably never write so much about myself again in one post….I appreciate those of you who are still reading this and I commend you. Thanks. 🙂

Related Articles  

My Little Part of the Sky ( My first post!!!)

Diary of a Mad Blogger: the second attempt  

Across the Blogoverse

During these hot August days and nights I have been visiting some very cool sites of some very talented and engaging bloggers.  What follows is a sampling of some excellent recent blog posts that I have particularly enjoyed.

I call this ACROSS THE BLOGOVERSE

Spanning the virtual globe to bring you the finest blogging anywhere…

 A Gardener’s Optimism (wordsandherbs.wordpress.com) Cathy conveys the heart and soul of a gardener in her post. Beautifully written with a flourish.

Weekly Image of Life: Beautiful (thismansjourney.net) A beautiful day shown in stunning photos.  Well worth the trip.

 Anyone needing a smile? (gusgus64.wordpress.com) Gunta delivers.  A must see.

What you don’t know can kill you (globalunison.wordpress.com) A well-written article about Hookah smoking. Naima is a talented writer for sure.

Paraprosdokian (judysp.wordpress.com)  Judy Sp not only taught me something I didn’t know…she made me laugh.

How I learned about Shinola (ctwfrank.com) There’s a lesson to be learned here.  Great advice in an enjoyable read.

Read about Heart to Harp and of her experiences playing soothing music at the hospice unit in the following posts:

Finding new confidence in playing for others.(hearttoharp.wordpress.com)

Playing at the hospice the second week.(hearttoharp.wordpress.com)

This is the first installment in what will be an occasional series showcasing superb blog posts in a variety of styles and subjects across the blogoverse.

Happy Reading!

Strawberryindigo.

INSPIRATION

Karen H. from Midlife Chronicles was kind enough to bestow unto me…

THE INSPIRING AWARD

This is an honor and a surprise…

THANK YOU KAREN H. 

Karen H. is an inspirational one. In her blog Midlife Chronicles she is navigating midlife with wine, laughter and a twist of wry.  She also is a terrific writer who writes about commonplace events but makes it her own and breathes life into her words.  I highly recommend reading her blog.  Here and here are two posts to get you started.

The rules of this award were not passed down to me but that is quite alright since I’m not much for rules.  I do like to give credit where credit is due and definitely recognition.  In my wanderings around the WordPress universe I have run into many different kinds of blogs and writers.  Most are passionate about what they write, some are quite talented and a few have drawn me in whether it be by superb writing or by the personality of the writer. (or both) It is these that I visit on a regular basis and my list grows slowly but grow it does. New on my list is Marc Marrs’ Brown Eyed Music.

Marc is not only just a writer among other things, he is a songwriter and musican as well.

I have always admired songwriters. They are a rare breed. It takes a unique individual to straddle the two worlds of word and melody. To master these worlds and bring them to a colorful fruition takes a rare talent that most do not possess.

Music is important. It calms and soothes, it entertains and amuses. Music makes us feel the heights of ecstasy and the depths of despair. Music dares us to dream and music inspires.

Marc is following his dreams and that is inspiring to me, that is why I am awarding him THE INSPIRING BLOG AWARD. 

Marc Marrs is versatile and full of surprises.   He also writes movie reviews that are quite good. Stop by his blog Brown Eyed Music.

Give a listen to his Classical Trilogy to hear Middle Earth come to life or read his take on The Man of Steel himself; Superman and see ( and hear too) what I mean.

Wishing you an inspiring day!

Strawberryindigo.