Come to the table and eat

Baby Deer

I had an unusually trying day the other day. Confrontations, intense emotions, in your face accusations and downright hostility. I remembered an old Italian tradition – if you can get people to sit down at a table with a good meal, half your problem is solved “venire al tavolo e mangiare” –  “Come to the table and eat.”  My mother was a big proponent of that adage – but of course she was a remarkable cook!  Me, not so much. So instead of a homemade meal, a good restaurant was chosen, and the emotions  and the situation was made better. Driving home afterwards, on a stretch of highway that is fairly desolate, going about 50mph, I saw some gangly legs in my headlights. Slowing down, then coming to a crawl, there were about 15 baby deer in front of my vehicle crossing the road. They stopped and stared, I stopped and stared, and thanked our higher power that I did not hit any of them. They are God’s beautiful creatures. It was a wonderful end to a not so wonderful day.

Choose Love Not Fear

Boston Marathon

“We are one Boston. We are one community. As always, we will come together to help those most in need. And in the end, we will all be better for it.” ~Mayor T. Menino

To contribute to The One Fund Boston, click on the logo.

This is an excerpt of an email that my sister Mary wrote to our family. My sister is a resident of Boston.

“As I write these words it is unfathomable to me that this bombing could happen in Boston, the city we love. When 911 hit it was so horrific that we immersed ourselves in our children and their needs blocking out the sadness and heartache that hit all of America. But this past week’s memories of 911’s fear and terror flooded our minds, reality hitting home, not only because the bombings actually took place in Boston but because it involved children. Martin Richards, the 8 year old boy who once proudly displayed a poster board that said “no more hurting people” and the 19 year old, a mere child himself, who reportedly put the backpack containing explosives down next to Martin and inflicted this pain and destruction on so many people, so many lives.

I thought of the parents who waited in agony for news, a glimpse of hope – parents of the dead victims hoping that the culprits would be found, the father of the bomber in Russia who said “thank God” when his 19 year old son was captured alive, parents of the survivors many who have lost limbs, hope and spirit due to this devastating event.

Mothers and fathers, sisters and brothers, neighbors and friends drifting on this tormented sea of sadness only to be enveloped by the brave men and women who rushed unselfishly to the sides of the victims and runners – the firefighters, policemen and common folk like you and me. Once again my hope and faith was renewed in all mankind. The out-pouring of love and generosity is still evident in the news as we continually hear stories of bravery and kindness spread across the commonwealth of Massachusetts toward our fellow brothers and sisters.

On Friday before Dzhokar Tsarnaev was captured we attended a closing ceremony for my son’s Boy Scout troop where Dr. Bernard Harris – physician, astronaut, entrepreneur, author, and  founder of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics), and the first African American to walk in space, gave a lecture outside to these rowdy Boy Scouts who were full of questions about his experience as an astronaut. What Dr. Harris said in his closing remarks will forever be embellished on my mind as he said there are three important simple things to remember in life.

• One – you can do anything if you put your mind to it

• Second – you have talent and

• Third – you are put on this earth for a purpose, go find it!

What my parents taught me were all of these things and more, but what struck me the most was the last point he imparted to these children. He had faith, he was put on this earth for a purpose and he was going to live out this purpose with gusto!

Please take a moment and pray for all the victims, their families and this Russian family as they are all children of God.”

 

 

American Chronicles

Gallery

This gallery contains 8 photos.

The first reaction I had when looking at the photos photographer Brian Goldman sent for consideration for the cover of our Spring issue was, “they look like a Norman Rockwell painting.” And you know what – lots of other people … Continue reading

Find Your Own Way To Goodness

Labyrinth at Chartres Cathedral

Labyrinth at Chartres Cathedral

I’m one of those people who have tended to doubt themselves, particularly when it comes to making decisions. Give me a test where I have to memorize things, and I’m your girl. I’m a poster child for the American education system. I learned how not to think for myself, so that I could score higher, win ribbons, and do the things I really didn’t want to do. Then when I walked out of a legal career to reinvent my life based on listening to my desires and instincts, I realized I had no idea how to go beyond someone else’s rules and find my own code. And this is what creating an inspired life is all about. It’s about being true to yourself, the self you are in this minute, not the self you think you should be, and not what other people–or even you–would usually do.

Shakespeare, the dude, wrote, “To thine own self be true,” and I think he would have made a fine career coach or guru. Real success comes from astonishing independence, being present to your immediate truth rather than to external or internal expectations. Inspiration doesn’t always arrive dressed in linen and smelling like lavender. Sometimes, it comes through raw insistence of what you do not want to hear. Listening is the price of flourishing.

I’ll give you an example. Continue reading

Ti Amo

Ti AmoItaly’s influence on the U.S. is enduring and prevalent. As we learn in school, our country is named after the Florentine explorer who discovered this great land. From the time of Amerigo Vespucci  and Christopher Columbus, America has been inspired in some way or another by Italian know-how. Indeed, Italy has had a major impact on art, science and every sector in between — and it continues to do so. Continue reading

American Made

American Made by Dave BarnhouseWarm memories of those old country stores that are still sprinkled across our land. “The country store was a social gathering place in rural America and offered a wide array of merchandise – groceries, hardware, clothes, medications. In this delightful image a young couple on their motorcycles have stopped by for a cold soda. As a boy admires their powerful machines, two old-timers sit on the porch, intent on a leisurely game of checkers. Mom and Pop load up the pick-up and get ready to head home.” Continue reading