Just For Today…….

β€œJUST FOR TODAY, I will live through this day only. I will not brood about yesterday or obsess about tomorrow. I will not set far-reaching goals or try to overcome all of my problems at once.

I know that I can do something for 24 hours that would overwhelm me if I had to keep it up for a lifetime.

JUST FOR TODAY, I will be happy. I will not dwell on thoughts that depress me. If my mind fills with clouds, I will chase them away and fill it with sunshine.

JUST FOR TODAY, I will accept what is. I will face reality. I will correct those things that I can correct and accept those I cannot.

JUST FOR TODAY, I will improve my mind. I will read something that requires effort, thought and concentration. I will not be a mental loafer.

JUST FOR TODAY, I will make a conscious effort to be agreeable. I will be kind and courteous to those who cross my path, and I’ll not speak ill of others. I will improve my appearance, speak softly, and not interrupt when someone else is talking. Just for today, I will refrain from improving anybody but myself.

JUST FOR TODAY, I will do something positive to improve my health. If I’m a smoker, I’ll quit. If I’m overweight, I will eat healthfully — if only for today. And not only that, I will get off the couch and take a brisk walk, even if it’s only around the block.

JUST FOR TODAY, I will gather the courage to do what is right and take the responsibility for my own actions.”
― Abigail Van Buren

Found this here.

The Singing Made All the Difference….

Every year around this time, anytime you walk into a store (Wal-Mart, Kroger, etc.) you see the Salvation Army people out, ringing their bell, and asking for money. I know this is for a good cause and they should be applauded for volunteering to stand out there; but most of the time, they are just plain annoying. I have met some who are rude and or borderline pushy when asking for money. I hate to admit it, but usually I just walk right on by with a feeling of guilt that lasts about half a second.

But then last Friday happened….

I was heading into Kroger after work to pick up some medicine. As I was pulling in, I saw the old gentleman standing at the door, ringing his bell, and I began to dread having to walk by him. I pulled into my parking spot and began to walk to the door. On my way, I kept seeing people stop and just stare at the man. People heading out of the store, going into the store, stopping and watching this little old man, despite the fact it was cold and dreary outside. As I got closer, I realized the man was singing. Old, traditional Christmas songs. A Capella. With a beautiful, quiet voice. I watched as he stopped one man in his tracks. The man turned around, listened for a few seconds, smiled, and gave some money. At the same time, this other man with two little sons came out of Kroger. One little boy ran up to the Salvation Army man with the brightest smile on his face. The old man let the little boy ring the bell while he finished out his song. By now, I was at the door to Kroger and the Salvation Army volunteer had a crowd.

I went inside with a lump in my throat. I cannot remember the last time I saw a crowd gather around one of the Salvation Army volunteers. I cannot remember when I have heard one of the those volunteers sing such beautiful songs that would stop people in their track. Literally, make them stop, listen, and turn around. Most days it seems we are all in a hurry and do not have the “time” to stop and listen.

As I left the store, I made sure to walk by the old man again. This time a woman was standing next to him listening. “The singing makes all the difference!” I said to her. She replied, “Oh my goodness! It does! Doesn’t it!”. The Salvation Army volunteer simply replied, with the warmest smile on his face, “Thank you ladies! The singing keeps me warm out here.” And he began another song.

Times like this reminds you of the true Holiday Spirit we should have. Giving to others, connecting with strangers, and taking the time to listen to others. I got into my car and felt truly blessed and touched that I was able to hear that old man sing. He truly was, to me, an angel reminding us all what this time of the year is about.

Just a little Backroad….

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There’s nothing like hitting a little back road. Cruising with the hubby while singing Ol’ Red with Blake Shelton. Checking out the corn, rice, beans, and peanuts growing in fields lining the road. Just a little relaxation and bonding time on an Arkansas Saturday afternoon. We haven’t gone on a Backroad together in a while, and it sure did feel good!

Outdoor Oasis

With the dawn of Pinterest, it seems as though you can get ideas and instructions for almost anything. I can get inspired from my couch as I click-through that nifty app on my phone. However, the absolute best inspiration and my favorite type of “research” involves family.

Below are pictures from the yard of one of my aunts. She is a Master Gardener and my go-to for flower questions. She is the one who came over and helped plant my front flower bed when we first bought our house. Every trip to her house includes a stroll through her yard. Her use of flowers, pots, plants, and decor motivates and inspires me as I create my own backyard oasis.

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Love the different aspects of color and types of containers she uses. I absolutely love her red deck with the water feature and planted containers all over.

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These were some of my favorite flowers I found. I am inspired by all of the different colors and textures my aunt uses throughout her landscaping.

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She ties in ornaments, tables, and rocks to provide places to sit and walk through all of the flower beds.

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Just another example of the several types of colors and plants she incorporates.

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Besides providing a beautiful picture, this tree was also home to two bird nests, with one being a hummingbird nest!

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This has to be my favorite yard ornament ever!

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As I smell the flowers, you can see my sister photographing everything in sight!

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Aunt Cindy includes different aspects throughout her flowerbeds, including several rock pathways such as this one.

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This is part of the border separating her property from her neighbors.

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These awesome pots lined the steps leading up to her back door on her deck. I must have something like this whenever we finally build on our back deck!

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Yet another seating area in my aunt’s yard. These are hanging from a tree with seating below. Can you guess what I will be on the lookout for on future flea market trips!?

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Even Dad enjoys strolling through the flower beds and yard, as my sister is still photographing everything in sight in the background. I do believe he wished we would focus more on the flowers and less on taking pictures of him!

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My aunt always likes to share some plants as well. Here is a crepe myrtle that she gave me for my yard.

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She also loaded me down with some gardening books!

Hopefully this has inspired you as much as it did me!!