As I mentioned yesterday, Heather was entering her lemon curd and strawberry tarts with the shortbread crust (which our dance friends happily chowed down on Saturday night!  Nobody complains about being a guinea pig for Heather’s baked goods!)  I know she really stressed out over them, especially as the crust took her four tries to make it to her satisfaction yesterday!   There were 5 entries in the lemon dessert category, and she figured that she’d make the top three. 

Mid-day, I got a text that looked like this: 
Needless to say, we are all very excited and very proud of her.  This gives her a first place for one of her baked creations and a first place for one of her jewelry creations along with a bunch of seconds, a couple of thirds and an honorable mention.  What a year this has been for her!   And she’s even being asked to talk to people about baking for their cafe’s and stores! 

Ladies and gentlemen, this is what Success looks like!  It isn’t a huge house, fancy cars and buckets of money.  It’s the satisfaction of a job well done, and even better, a job that you love doing! 

I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again, a large part of our education comes from watching our kids!  Mine have taught me far more than I can even fathom, at times!

Interestingly, I was going to start this post with my favorite Dr. Seuss quote, and am, in my usual, jumbled way, going to segue into it by saying that my daughter has taught me more about living the quote than anything or anybody else!

I was going to just post lesson #1, but when I saw the other four lessons on this picture, I realized that I needed to include them all! 

This man who wrote so many books on which children learned to read  gave us so many lessons which we, as adults need to revisit, and revisit them often because we tend to lose track of them as we go about the business of making a living.

In truth, he left us with dozens of life lessons and I will forever be grateful that my mother started me on his books at an early age, so that I would do the same for my daughters. 

Not only did Dr. Seuss teach us to appreciate ourselves, he also taught us compassion for others (Horton Hears a Who’s “a person’s a person no matter how small”), respect for the environment (The Lorax “Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing’s going to get better.  It’s not.”)  and of course, to appreciate our individuality (the infamous Cat in the Hat “You were not born to just fit in, you were born to stand out!”). 

All in all, his messages were about self-appreciation and accepting responsibility, not only for ourselves, but for the world around us, it’s people and our planet.  Most of us enjoyed his rhythmic prose, but it wasn’t until the last few years that I really started seeing people recognize the messages he so cleverly couched within that prose. 

In the decades I’ve lived in this human form, I’ve seen the world go through some pretty drastic changes.  In the 60’s and early 70’s, the younger generation was very aware and vocal about what was going on in the world.  From then until just recently, that awareness seemed to fade into nothingness, ultimately becoming, for many, a sense of entitlement.  So many times, I have wanted to say to someone “just because someone decided to give birth to you does not mean that you deserve to be given everything you want and need.  Once you are old enough to have privileges, you are old enough to also have responsibilities.”

I’m pleased to see that people, young, old and in between are starting to realize that they are not islands unto themselves and that their actions affect everyone else.  I appreciate the fact that young people are using social media to challenge their peers, and face it, all of us, to start giving back instead of just taking as if it is our right.  As I see it, our true “right” is to live on this planet and participate in the care and feeding of everyone and everything.  We all come with our own, unique gifts, even if it’s simply the ability to carry a heavy load.  Everyone’s gift is equally important in the general scheme of things, and each one is necessary to make everything run smoothly.

I’m starting to sound a little preachy here, and for that I apologize, as that’s not my intent.  I merely wish to convey my passion in looking for ways to help humanity and our wonderful, generous, terribly abused Mother Earth.  I’m learning more about doing that from my daughter, and am being inspired to look for more ways to help.  At the moment, I’m an apprentice, training to do more, while doing my best to cause as little harm as possible.  But I keep my eyes open for those opportunities to just give something back, even if what I give back is to simply raise the vibration with positive energy wherever I go. 

In a way, I’ve circled back to yesterday’s post when I talked about paying it forward with gratitude.  I guess that’s what I’m feeling most strongly now.  I’m working on fixing some things in myself so I’ll be able to more fully engage in the process of giving back. 

What do you do which helps improve things around you?

My gratitudes tonight are:
1. I am grateful for opportunities to help make the world a better place.
2. I am grateful for the lessons I learn from my children as they make me more compassionate, more aware and more giving.
3. I am grateful for challenges I’m given which help me grow and recognize things I can help change.
4. I am grateful for the fact that we never have to stop learning….EVER!
5. I am grateful for dinners with friends who are also family.  My heart is smiling tonight.

Love and light.

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