Kindness

Save One

I love animals.  My daughters and I used to volunteer with Kittico Cat Rescue to help cats find homes.  At any given time it seems there’s a surplus of animals and not enough homes to go around.  It makes me sad.

My dad was a big animal lover.  I guess I get my love of animals from him.  I brought home cats and there was the occasional dog that would follow me home growing up.  He didn’t turn them away, though he probably should have.  He wound up feeding a lot of stray cats in the neighborhood.  It was an expensive chore, but I loved him for it.

pic by Cherry

pic by Cherry

Back in May I stopped and picked up a puppy that was trotting along on a busy street in our neighborhood.  I couldn’t let it go, he was so pretty and by himself.  I didn’t want to see him get ran over.  So, I picked up the little guy and brought him home.  He is a husky – great Pyrenees mix.  He looked tired and hungry.

We named him Scout though I have often thought I should have named him Forrest because he reminds me of Forrest Gump.  He is a big baby that thrives on gentle love.  He hates to get in trouble and doesn’t respond well to harsh discipline.

He has sky blue eyes, but his left eye is brown on top and blue on the bottom.  Scout howls now and then and even says a few mumbled words.    He has grown into quiet a character and a wonderful addition to our family.  I am glad no one ever claimed him.

Through the years I have loved on many pets and only actually paid for one dog for my daughter.  Other than that they have been the cast offs and strays that I have found along the way.  Cats, dogs, one bird, and once a few hamsters.  Animals are simple creatures to figure out.  They need love, food, water and protection.

Here is a picture of Scout now at approximately a year old.  IMG_2143[1]He’s a great big boy at 85 pounds.

I used to have the same philosophy with people.  I thought people were generally good at heart, circumstances and events happen that sometimes change them over time.  I thought it was my role to help and save them.   People and animals must want to be saved in order to be helped.  You cannot force an animal to trust you.  If they have been hurt or abused, trust will take time and patience and there’s the real possibility that you will never be fully trusted and will be permanently kept at a distance though tolerated.

People are the same way, if they have had bad life experiences, others that have betrayed their trust, hurt or abused them, then trust is proven and grown over time with the real possibility that you may never get as close as you wish.

The important thing to remember is we each have opportunities that are specific to us and our environment.  You can think about someone you know and tell yourself that “someone” should help them, but they are in your reach – you may be the someone who needs to act.

Take the time to appreciate the people and animals in your life.  Take a moment to notice those around you that need you, reach out, you may be the person that can save one more life today.  Every human touch of kindness counts no matter how small.

Cherry Coley

Comfort From A Furry Friend

Lindsey Keal

Lindsey Keal

Today our black cat reminded me how comforting the presence of an animal is.  I had asthma as a child and spent many hours in bed with a vaporizer.  My cat Mitten (who I was not allergic to) would cuddle up with me and purr.

Many nights I went to sleep to the comforting sound of singing and purring of my cat.  Batman, our black cat, reminded me this morning how comforting that sound can be.  It brought back warm memories of long ago when the sound calmed me, comforted and helped me breath at a slower rhythm.

Animals add so many wonderful things to our lives.  They add entertainment and companionship, acceptance and unquestioning love.  I thankful for the furry family members I’ve known over the years, they’ve added their share of smiles and tears to my memories and will never be forgotten

Cherry Coley (c).

Share Some Love

Photo by Casey KealSpring is almost here.  Amazing how quickly time passes.  Valentines day is quickly approaching.  It makes me wonder how we allowed all of our holidays to become so commercial.  I love Valentines day candy and the stuffed animals and treats are pretty cute, but it’s a lot of hype for “showing love,” that shouldn’t be limited to one day of the year.

I like to keep my family all “loved up.”  My kids know they are loved every day, not just one.  We tell each other on a regular basis, show each other often and have fun just being together.

Valentines day is great and of course another day to enjoy sweet treats and pampering, but sharing love is something that never gets old. 

Take a moment to show the people in your life you appreciate them, tell them, do something nice, and let them know they are loved.

Cherry Coley (c)

Give A Little Love

100_5605Give a little love, do something nice and spread some cheer every chance you get. 

Like ripples on the water everything thing we do creates an effect on our environment and the people around us.  Yesterday I was feeling rather blue and had several friends that were kind by calling to say they were thinking about me, or texting me to cheer me up.  One of them helped me to see things in a different light as he often does.

It’s important to surround yourself with people who are interested in learning about you and who you are.  People that share some of the same interests, have opposing opinions and aren’t afraid to share them, and people who are just fun to be around.  We all really need a variety of friends to spend time with and keep us on our toes, to offer our support and encouragement, and to share with and learn from.

I have a couple of Eeyore type personality friends that have a sarcastic sense of humor and a realist outlook that borders on gloom, but they are good-natured and I love hearing from them. 

I am thankful for the people in my life.  We are all here to work together and help each other along the way.  Each of us have our unique gifts and talents that make us who we are.  It’s such a thrill to meet someone new and have the time to get to know them.

Cherry Coley (c)

The End or the Beginning?

“Every Beginning has an end, every end had a beginning.” 

It’s a funny quote that can lead to some deep thought if you let it.  It’s sad sometimes when things come to an end.  There are a lot of things we don’t like to see end, yet everything in life has a beginning and an end.

When relationships end it can be a sad event.  You don’t really want them to, but things just start to drift apart.  Sometimes you can stop the drifting and sometimes you can’t.  I’ve been in relationships like that where things just changed and it was time for the relationship to change too.  On a few of those occasions I was fortunate enough to see the relationship evolve and become a lasting friendship, in other cases it was simply time to say goodbye.

How we respond to the changes in life can help define who we become.  After all, if there is one thing that is constant and certain in life it is the fact that life will change.  We will lose people, animals, friends, family, in our lives.  They will leave, move, die, or just choose not to be a part of our lives anymore.  It’s just the way things go

We have a choice how we will respond to these changes.  We can hold on for dear life and choke any chance for reconciliation or healing out of existence.  Or we can learn to truly love with an open hand and realize that love, friendship, all relationships (other than those of parent and child) are a choice.  Actually, in some ways I suppose the parent and child relationship is a choice too. 

Keeping in mind that the people in your life are there because they CHOOSE to be there can lend a different perspective.  Realizing that it’s a choice that they are there can make a you appreciate the other person more, treasure and make the most of your time you do have together instead of wondering why the person falls short of all the expectations  put on them. Take a moment to appreciate that they are there because they care and they want to be there, and maybe a different approach is what is needed if there is stress in the relationship.  Take a break.

This is life, there are no dress rehearsals, no redo’s, no rewind or erasing moments that suck.  You get what you get and you don’t throw a fit.  BUT…isn’t it nice, we have a choice, we can get up in the morning and change our attitude to thinking that each day, is a new beginning and then make it happen.

Tomorrow, will be the start of something new.

Cherry Coley (c) 

 

Tipping the Scales and Maintaining Balance

balanceI used to think that multitasking was one of my strongest talents.  I juggle a lot of things at the same time.  Yet, this past year I kept finding myself having to slow down and focus on just one thing and at times it felt inhibiting, frustrating even.

 The problem with constantly multitasking is that you never truly master the “one” thing if your time and focus is on a lot of other things at the same time.  There are times when single-mindedness is a true blessing and there are some people who have the gift of focusing so intently that they stay with the “one” thing until they understand it through and through before moving on to the next thing.

 Those same people with such extraordinary focus sometimes complain about not being able to multitask.  To me that is the balance the universe threw in just for fun and another case where we are shown that we need each other to make things run smoothly.

 Balance is something that is sought by most people.  There are tons of books written about how to gain balance in work and home life.  There will be just as many more written in the future as we all try the different solutions to find the one that best works for us.

 For those people who are able to attain balance, they must stay aware and keep on top of their circumstances and events in their lives to keep the balance.  We all struggle at some point.

 The answer lies within the person seeking balance.

 For me, I have many projects and interests that I weed down to a few.  From that point I take those that are related to each other and group them together.  If they can be done around the same time then all is well, if not then each project will be allotted its own time and energy individually.  Some projects will be put aside until other projects are finished.  It’s important to prioritize.

 Balance is vital to keep up a healthy, mental, emotional, social, and physical life. 

 I read a quote the other day in the book – “The Success System that Never Fails” – by James Allen.  The quote said, “Eventually you will be controlled by your circumstances, so it’s important to control your circumstances now.”  I’ve thought about that quote a lot since then, I can’t think of a better call to action, to get up, take responsibility for your health, your surroundings and your life right now than that.

 Cherry Coley ©

Let’s Do This!

startThose who really want to accomplish something will find a way; those who are not committed will find an excuse.

When you make excuses about why things didn’t get done, or create obstacles to use as an excuse to give up on that project, diet, or exercise routine the only person you are really hurting is yourself, right?  Wrong.  Like it or not we are all part of a community of sorts.  We each have friends, co-workers, and family members in our lives that pay attention to our choices and decisions.  What you do and don’t do, affects the people around you.

 Someone who make excuses about meeting deadlines, or personal goals rarely exceeds anywhere else.  I know for me I have to be careful because the excuses try to slip in there unnoticed when I least expect it.  “I can’t go jogging tonight, it got dark outside too quick,” or “I wound up running errands for other people the last few days and it threw me off my whole routine.”

 Life happens, accidents, incidents, whatever might come up can either be worked in, worked around, or incorporated into daily routines if you are really committed to a positive goal.

 Let’s make 2013 a year when we reach our goals.  Let’s make it a year of encouragement for the people around us, the year to do random acts of kindness and start something good. 

 I am determined to do some charity walks this year so I have started training to be able to reach those goals.  It’s something I used to do quite often, but it’s been awhile.  I look forward to doing my part, to giving back, to raising money for good causes and most of all, I look forward to crossing the finish line and knowing I stuck in there and made it! 

 2013 is going to be a great year!  Let’s do this!

 Cherry Coley ©

Catch the Spirit – Pass it On

“He who is not thankful for little, will not be thankful for a lot.” – Chinese Proverb

I am thankful for holidays and especially for Christmas.  I am thankful Christmas symbolizes the birth of Christ, although according to Jewish calendars I think he was actually born around passover.  Still the music is beautiful, the images are wonderful and the peaceful, quiet that comes in winter with the cold weather adds to a sense of peace.

I love everything about Christmas.  The trees and beautiful decorations, the sparkling lights, the candles, the dishes, the spirit that comes to inhabit the homes of those that welcome Christmas.  I’m not talking about the commercialism and greedy parts that Christmas has grown into,  I’m speaking of the true love and caring spirit of Christmas.

What I really wish is that this spirit of Christmas would stay with us.  Not the rush, the hurried and frantic parts, but the quiet peace that is Christmas that settles after everything is done, all the presents are unwrapped, everyone is fed and happy, and content.  The quiet hush that comes after a day of excitement, sharing, celebrating and being with people that we love.

I used to love to watch my kids sleeping among their new stuffed animals at the end of the day, smiling and cuddling a new toy.  We are blessed, truly blessed.

Today and every day we can capture a little of the spirit that is Christmas.  It doesn’t have to be a holiday to show someone you care.  It doesn’t have to be Christmas to contact loved one’s you don’t talk to that often. Kindness doesn’t have a season, thankfulness doesn’t have a limit. 

In everything give thanks.  Thank you, God for giving us another day, let us use it wisely.

Cherry Coley (c) 

 

Being Thankful

candleBeing thankful is good practice.  Keeping your mind tuned in to all the things in daily life to be thankful for will change your perspective and give you a better attitude. 

 You might not like the job you go to each day, but it is paying your bills and allowing you to keep things that make your life comfortable and easier.  You might not like going to the grocery store, but thank goodness we don’t have to hike miles to get there, or are required to grow our own food or make all of our own clothes and shoes. 

Isn’t it nice to not have to go to the stream or to the well to pump water, then boil it to be able to bathe or cook?  Isn’t it nice not to have to go find a bush or walk to the outhouse like our grandparents and their parents did?  I am so thankful for indoor plumbing!

 You might not like to read, but isn’t it nice to have so much information available just by typing a few words in a search engine like Google, Yahoo, or Bing?   Isn’t it amazing that we have such extensive libraries where we can check out books that were written in places all over the world, and by authors both modern and from centuries past.  What about e-books?  Now there are so many books to choose from on just about any subject you can dream up, available with a click of your mouse.

 You are no longer required to read in daylight or by candle light.  Now you can read anytime the notion hits you.  You can read on e-readers, your computer, your tablet or phone.  It’s amazing the information that is so readily available in just about any form you can think of including audible books, CD’s and even cassette tapes.

 While on the subject, it’s it terrific that we can write and publish at will now?  What an amazing thing that we can write articles, protest, give opinions, or write blogs at will and about just about any subject!

I am thankful to be living here, right now at this time in history, because truly right now is a great time to be here.

Cherry Coley (c)

Listen, I Can See You!

Oh to see a rose, to smell the fragrance, touch the soft petals, look at the rich color.  What a beautiful reminder of what our senses are for.

Today I am thankful for the senses.  What a gift to have each of them.  I am thankful for the sight I do have, although it wouldn’t be near as good without my contacts or glasses.  I am thankful for the options we have to improve our sight as well.

 I am thankful for the ability to see, hear, taste, touch, and speak.  In the last few years my mom had a terrible time with her eyes and ears.  Her eyes would close involuntarily which made it challenging for her to read, cook, walk and too dangerous for her to drive.  She also had Meniere’s disease which affects balance and hearing.  She had many side effects and illnesses caused by large doses of the chemotherapy she had years previously.

 In listening to her try to deal with these frustrations, I came to appreciate when there were good days much more as well as be grateful for my own senses and the ability to help.

 Nothing in life should be taken for granted, though it is human nature to do just that.  We take for granted things that we have always had or that have always been there, only noticing how much they meant to us if something happens and they are damaged or lost.

 Take a moment to appreciate the gift of your senses, even if you don’t have all of them, be thankful for what you have and put them to good use while taking good care of them.

Cherry Coley (c)