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"Happy Hour on the Deck", Imagination and the power of community

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

One of biggest perks, to me, of being retired is that I get to start each day with the time to truely allow myself to awaken to the world around me. I get up early each morning, but not to the demanding command of an alarm clock. I turn on the coffee pot prepared the night before. Stretch while I await for the much anticipated brew and then, on most mornings head to the hot tub where I meditate, do my own version of yoga adapted to the restrictions of the hot tub and watch the world slowly awaken. In addition, most mornings I read from selections of my large library of "inspirational books". Books that are about living life: The Bible, the writings of Tao Te Ching, books of daily devotions, books by thinkers like Wayne Dyer, and books that revolve around a very eccletic collection of philosophies. Most mornings I read short selections from several randomly picked selections and I'm surprised by how often they will all guide my thinking down the same path. Today was one of those days.
None of these thoughts were new, but combined they allowed the sunrise in my mind accompany the sunrise outside my window.

To start with, a quote from "Your Best Life Now": "It's a simple truth that you cannot give birth to something you have not first conceived. You must conceive it on the inside through your eyes of faith before it will come to pass on the outside. Your vision, what you see, has a tremendous impact in your life. We need to quit allowing our imaginations to keep us beaten down to where we don't think we can do anything. Instead, let's start allowing God to use our imaginations to build us up, to help us accomplish our dreams. In other words, keep things in front of you that you want to see come to pass."

Your imagination is like a canvas. You can paint on it any kind of picture you choose through your thoughts, attitudes, and what you decide to focus on. ....Don't let "impossible" or "can't be done" thoughts blur the colors on your canvas.

Second find for this morning taken from "Until Today": " Your experiences in life are food for your soul. They make up the meat and potatoes of your character. Some experiences are quite tasty and good. Others would lead you to believe you are starving! If you insist you should have been served steak when you've been served chicken, you could miss the fact that it was served on fine china."

A third inspiration that fit in with my morning was centered around how important it is to share the things that you discover in your life with those you love. "As we share our discoveries with other people, we can grow together."

Many of you who will read this blog are regular visitors to a thread on Outdoor People called "Happy Hour on the Deck". Here we've created our own ideal imaginary world - a place where we can safely sit back and relax in a very friendly atmosphere. It's a place where we do "share our discoveries with other people" and we do grow together. We take each other along on the adventures that each of us is having: a hike down a Zion trail, or a run on an early moonlit road in Canada, or the ride up snow covered mountain road or the simple observation of the flash of a shooting star. Here we allow ourselves to live in our imaginations; taking "magic carpet rides" to wherever we want to go! We find ourselves actually excited by the experiences that we're having with our Outdoor friends. But just as importantly, here we find hope. We share our accomplishments which prove to the others just what can be done. We see that you really can lose large amounts of weight and can lead an exciting life climbing rock walls, hiking miles each day or riding a bike to work. We learn that even those that live in the biggest cities can still find the things in nature to produce a feeling of wonder. We also learn that even some of the largest obstacles in life (cancer, death of family members, etc.) are things that we can deal with and move on living the most enriched life that we can live. Maybe most important of all, there's always someone there to hold our hand and provide the support that we all need at times. Keeping all this mind, it's easy to understand how it's possible that we saw us pass the 13,000 posts on this thread this past week.

I thank each of my friends out there for providing me with visions of what's possible and for helping me paint the picture on my canvas.

Life is good!

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Your words always touch a place in my heart....thanks for building such a wonderful virtual world, and allowing us all to see those stars, and build worlds of our own!
    2014 days ago
    The most meaningful thing that has happened to me on Spark is having you stop by my page, read my blog, and tell me that you know of a place that would probably be good for me: The deck. Thanks for being the architect, the carpenter, the friend. You've built a wonderful place.
    2015 days ago
    When I finally retire, you're going to have to come help me design my deckspace. :) Pencil me in for July 2016, k?
    2016 days ago
  • KELPIE57
    And thank you wood, for bringing so much colour to us!
    2016 days ago
  • BOBBYD31
    wood, awesome blog and i love the way you start your day, i am so jealous i want to move in with you! someday i may have to drop by and visit you on the deck my freind!
    2016 days ago
    Awesome reflection wood, keeps me focused!
    2016 days ago
    Wood special post and week indeed.
    13,000...well golly gosh, that's a lot.

    Well done my friend. Your words speak to me as well. Yes, our Deck is a very real-imaginary place. Our minds are powerful tools.
    Like where you said, "you could miss the fact that it was served on fine china.", and I would add, and you might miss how great the chicken was.
    Vision, conception of ideas and sharing dreams ...critical steps to Hope.
    Hope ...powerful stuff.
    And when we have magic carpets, that can take us anywhere, firepits and hots tubs for storytelling, breakfast and Tapas Bars for endless nourishment...
    Life is Mighty Fine.
    Thank you my friend for being in my life.
    Extra hugs today!

    emoticon emoticon
    2016 days ago
    Well said, and just like the deck, I felt like you were taking me along on your journey this morning. It's nice to be able to open your eyes and truly see. It's not always so easy to do.
    2016 days ago
    Dear Wood, thank you so much for having an inspirational morning that you shared with all of us! I loved the "meat and potatoes" comparison of our experiences in life. Today I am starting out my day in a different light, in the reflection of a personal bouquet of thoughts from you, thank you for this bouquet....with it I am empowered to ward off those "impossible thoughts"- no blurred canvas going on here! I suspect this mornings hike, altho foggy outside yet- will be clear, bright, and full of wonder. I think I may start heating up the hottub in the mornings and trying some yoga poses to see what I can "see" in the true colors on my canvas. Thank you for the rainbow and the glasses to clearly view it better!! XOXOXO ***SNOW*** emoticon sending you sunny thoughts
    2016 days ago
  • BANJO_13
    Wood, even though I've only been a member of the team for less than a week, I am already feeling excited and hopeful again. You are right on about that. I haven't been able to have any adventures for a while for various reasons but sitting on The Deck stirs my imagination and makes me feel like anything is possible.
    2016 days ago
  • KITS4CHANGE always!
    2016 days ago
    A rare second blog in the same year Wood, and another keeper. I am giving the reply at Graduation, to the toast to the parents. As I read this blog, it kept popping into my mind as things that I want to share with the graduating class. I will likely refer back to this one several times as I try to put something together for them.

    I love how you express yourself, especially this line:

    "None of these thoughts were new, but combined they allowed the sunrise in my mind accompany the sunrise outside my window."

    I'm going to take that with me this morning.

    Thanks for all the great times on the deck. And I'm looking forward to many more! emoticon
    2016 days ago
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