Balanced with storytime, a rollicking time outdoors, and a visit and playtime with Amie, Katie and I spent quite a bit of the day paying some much-needed attention to our home and little details therein that weren't quite the priority over the holiday. I have been fortunate this week to feel a return of some of my normal energy, which has been a godsend if ever there was one. I hope that as I continue into my second trimester my energy will keep returning, as there is ever so much to be done...and to be done with all due efficiency.
Katie helped me clean the entire upper story, singing and playing alongside me and occasionally helping out with her scrub brush. I also devoted some time to fixing a drain that has recently been pesky. I wasn't sure I could do it myself, but with Katie cheering me on I found a solution, and after quite a bit of work, she gave me a high five when we finished. She is so sweet and my best helper.
We also made progess on our laundry, although some of it still needs to be put away---which I should be doing right now, but what the heck, blogging is more soul-nourishing.
For dinner, we made breakfast: french toast with keilbasa and pineapple. It seemed comforting, and everyone liked it.
I also just finished drafting the membership letter for potential new Toastmasters members and sent it to our President and VP of Membership to read/comment upon.
So it has been a productive day with moments of play and a quantity of mirth giving it value. I think the secret to real and lasting happiness is to find joy in being in the present moment, whether one is at work or play. We must give value and love to our own lives and celebrate the abundance of our own soul and the simple beauties within our own lives. No one was ever happy who compared his life to that of another. Happiness comes only from within. No one else can create that happiness for you. Unlike almost everything else, happiness is not a zero-sum proposition. Whereas many resources (food, fuel, gold, etc) are finite, happiness is one spiritual resource that never runs dry. If you are unhappy, that is not because someone else does have joy. I believe unhappy people are unhappy because they have a part of their spirit out of alignment or are not seeing life with the whole perspective available to them. If they are told, or if they tell themselves, constantly that they are miserable or that they are in competition with others, then they will be miserable. Truly joyful people never have gotten that way by wishing unhappiness on others. We must exault all souls, including our own, and wish goodness onto everyone.
My friend, Lauren, pointed me toward an excellent quote the other day. For those of my readers who may oppose the Bible as a source of wisdom (and I know I have at least two---hi, guys!), I understand your arguments and respect your position, but I also know for sure that there are truths in there about how to be a good person. If I am concerned about becoming a good person, I must overlook no nook and cranny and be open to wisdom in the many places I find it. Philippians 4:8 says, "Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable---if anything is excellent or praiseworthy---think about such things." The passage concludes with the idea that only by fixing our mind on such things can we attain transcendent peace.
I do get so frustrated with myself when I focus on petty or base things, and I always have felt like it is such a waste of time. There is so much in life that we should spend time celebrating, and it does no good to get caught up in someone else's negative vibe. I struggle with that, still, though. However, the world will never totally lack negative people. I think the key is just to cultivate an ear and frequency that tunes them out and replaces their sound with the harmony of those who speak in loveliness.
So, anyway, tomorrow is a fun day: music class resumes and I have lunch with some friends. Then the weekend, and I think my mom and I have some baking plans in the works---maybe homemade donuts? Yum yum yum!