(Wake Me Up Now) Weekly Photo Challenge: Beginning 4

There is a popular song, “Wake Me Up.”

A New Day Begins.

A New Day Begins.

This is your new day, the beginning. Don’t wait until it’s all over to wake up whether you are beginning a new chapter in your life, in the life of your child, in the life of your pet, or in your career. While there are a few things I would correct if I could go back in time, the reality is every single mistake I made taught me something. I would never be as wise without those lessons. So, don’t wait until you are wiser and older to wake up.

Parents of crying babies might wish for this phase to end. Stop and breathe instead and be grateful for those sleepless nights. Every moment you spend with your child is precious. The day will come quickly when your child is too old to carry and comfort when they cry, but I promise every sleepless night will help them learn to trust you and continue to come to you for advice.

At the beginning of life.

At the beginning of life.

Puppies may chew your favorite shoes or wet your favorite rug, but they are still so cute and so much fun to play with. The day will come when your dog no longer has the energy to play and yes, they might once again wet you favorite rug, but if you took the time for them when they were puppies, they will trust you with their lives and they will remain fateful to you until the end.

You might be nervous about that first day on the job, but I urge you to hang on to the joy. The joy will help you to adjust to changes that are sure to come in any career you choose.

Beginnings don’t end when we are older and wiser either. Life is all about change and every stage of life teaches us something new. Embrace the lessons and you will find joy.

Honoring Becoming a Writer: BBQ (Big Beautiful Blog Quotations) 4

After morning rainfallBeautiful Blog Quotation—BBQ was started by Kozo at Everyday Gurus. It is a way to honor other bloggers who inspire us with their writing and to quote something they said that touched our hearts and/ or inspired us.

EJ at Becoming a Writer wrote a post for Bloggers for Peace in November that definitely struck a chord for me.

EJ notes:

Nevertheless, hating my emotions is about as useful as hating my freckles, or hating my ear lobes.

I am learning to channel those fearful, doubting thoughts – and to value them. Without them, in a strange way, I’d never have written anything. Emotions are what make writers write, or painters paint, or singers sing.

I certainly would not have written my first novel without being pushed by my emotions. So ______ and ______, I forgive you and continue to pray for true healing for all involved. Mahalo for making my longtime dream of writing a novel come true, and mahalo for helping M. to finish songs she began writing long ago.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Joy (Wishing You a Joyful New Year!) 4


The holidays are truly a joyful time for us. We are grateful for all of our wonderful friends and family and the moments they share with us. We are especially grateful that our newest family member, Pepper, is a good sport and allowed the Santa hat to stay on for photos. We also are grateful that our Golden makes friends easily and readily accepted his new brother.

This week the Word Press Photo Challenge is joy. Michelle W. notes:

Whether or not you celebrate a winter holiday, the years’ end is a perfect time to look back at the year-that-was and happily forward to the year-that-will-be. A time of renewal, celebration, and joy.

This week, let’s set ourselves up for a happy new year: share a photo that shows us JOY.

I hope all of you are having a joyful holiday season and have a very Happy New Year. I can’t wait to see what brings you joy. Click on the link above to find other joyful photos.

Dreaming Big for December Peace Challenge: Celebrating a World United By Love 8

After last month’s challenge of loving thy enemy, Kozo wants to give you a party.  

So this month’s challenge is to plan a party that will ripple peace to the world. Use everything in your imagination for this peace party. Here are a few ideas:

  • You can hold your party anywhere. Where would you host your peace party? How many people would be at the party?
  • You can invite any guest you want from the past, present, or future. Who will play music at the party? Who will contribute artwork for the party? Who will give speeches?
  • What food can you serve that would bring peace in its consumption?
  • What about a group activity at your party? Would you have everyone at the party participate in one action for peace?
  • Feel free to use images, videos, or music in your post to give others the idea of what your party would be like.
  • What combination of events, people, and place would bring about the most peace at your party? What if you had Bob Dylan perform a duet with Ysuf Islam (formerly Cat Stevens)? What if you had a panel on compassion featuring Jesus, the Buddha, Muhammad, and Mother Teresa? Let your imagination run wild for peace.
  • What would you have at your party that would bring more joy, smiles, love, and peace into the world?

Don’t forget to link to at least one other B4Peace post and add your post to the Linkz collection.

A good head and a good heart are always a formidable combination. — Nelson Mandela

Nelson Mandela’s life inspired many including me, so I dedicate this fictional post to his memory and the memory of everyone who has used peaceful means to change the world in a positive direction. I’m also taking creative liberties here and writing about a party after peace is a fact instead of a party to create peace. After all, if you’re going to dream, why not dream big?

Finally the world is at peace. Abusers and abused have all let go of their anger and replaced it with true forgiveness. All children now experience unconditional love and nurturing from the moment of conception allowing them to spread the love and nurturing to everyone they encounter. Religious, ethnic, and economic intolerance have vanished as people now see hearts and souls not just outer trimmings.

It’s time for a virtual world party. Everyone’s invited. Those who do not have Internet can go to public forums in their neighborhoods. Many are also holding mini-gatherings. His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama, Pope Francis, and many other world leaders will address the world via a live broadcast. It’s a two-day holiday, a time for everyone to express their gratitude for a peaceful way of life.

We’re having close friends and family over, but we will also be connecting virtually with those who previously let us down and even with those who previously wounded us. It is time to celebrate change and the rebirth of kindness. We’ll be steaming the live performances of all of the wonderful parties that are taking place live in Sydney, Los Angeles, London, Kabul, Buenos Aires, Vienna, Beijing, Prague, Kuala Lumpur, etc.

Some famous musical artists are even performing new songs they wrote for the events. One of these is a song written and performed by Zhou Bichang of China, and Taylor Swift of America. Yo-Yo Ma will be performing with the Beijing Symphony Orchestra in Pyongyang, North Korea. Five years ago who would have thought this was possible?

Every city is serving ethnic foods that represents other parts of the world and many are serving dishes that represent sticking together like Japanese mochi and Cantonese gau (aka nian gao). The world plans to stick together for good this time.

And when the celebrations end, world leaders will continue organizing their communities to address global environmental issues. Most of the huge power companies have already switched to cleaner energy sources. Humanity is finally working together to heal all aspects of the world.