Friday, December 20, 2013

To My Blogging Family



As 2013 closes, I reflect back on all the amazing friendships I've developed with my blogging family and just wanted to say that I am thankful for you all. I love each and every one of you!!

I probably won't be back on Blogger until the first week of January so I hope you all have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!! 

Sincerely,

Keith :)

Monday, December 16, 2013

The Joy of Christmas Movies


“I'm a cotton-headed ninny-muggins”  ~Buddy  the Elf

With Christmas only 9 days away, I felt it was fitting to share my five favorite Christmas movies of all-time!

#5 The Grinch (Jim Carey version)

This one seems to be a polarizing choice, as many of my friends either love it or hate it. I happen to think that Jim Carrey gives a great performance in this adaptation of Dr. Seuss’s classic tale. Plus, his one-liners are unforgettable – “5PM, Dinner with self…I can’t cancel that again”.
#4 Miracle on 34th Street
I recently watched this movie with a friend of mine for the first time in years. I had almost forgotten what a classic that it truly is! Miracle on 34th Street is timeless. It will almost make you believe in Santa again :)
#3 Santa Clause
I’ll admit, I was never a Tim Allen fan until I saw this movie. This story, about a regular guy who unwittingly becomes Kris Cringle, is a tale for all ages. It combines heartwarming and witty in ways that few Christmas films do. The sequel is every bit as funny! We’ll just pretend the third one never happened though.
#2 A Christmas Carol (George C. Scott version)

There have been countless adaptations of Charles Dickens’classic tale of the miserly and frugal Ebenezer Scrooge and the 3 overnight visitors (Christmas Past, Christmas Present, and Christmas Future) that brought the Christmas spirit back to his hardened heart. I could watch this movie over and over again. Who can forget the climactic scene where Mr. Scrooge awakens on Christmas morning realizing that it's truly never too late to begin anew?

#1 Elf
Unquestionably my favorite Christmas movie of all-time. And not just because I’m in love with Zooey Deschanel (Although it doesn’t hurt). This movie just makes you feel…happy. Buddy the elf’s childlike innocence makes this movie impossible to resist. “The best way to spread Christmas cheer is singing loud for all to hear”.

What's your favorite Christmas movie?

Monday, December 9, 2013

The Beauty of Snow

snowy road
"Snow provokes responses that reach right back to childhood” ~Andy Goldsworthy
One of my favorite things on earth is snow. It brings out the inner-child in me in a way that few things can. Here in Central Kentucky, we are not blessed with an abundance of snow – perhaps 4-6 inches per year total. But on those handful of times per year in which it snows, I am filled with an inner-joy that is hard to describe…especially to some of my more summer-inclined friends :)
What’s not to love about snow? There’s nothing like waking up in the morning, drawing open the curtains, and seeing a sea of sheer white blanketing the earth. The tree tops are so beautiful when decorated with snow. And how beautiful is it to watch the snowflakes falling from the sky? Knowing that no two are alike. Nature really is poetic at times.
Do you enjoy the snow? Are you blessed with snowfall where you live?

Monday, December 2, 2013

My Very First Memory...

Paradise Image Gallery

Recently, a friend of mine asked me a question that I’ve never been asked in my life. “What was your very first memory”? I had to ponder for a second, as it’s not every day that you’re asked a question that you’ve never had to give an answer to.

But then, the memory came to me so very vividly... 

When I was a baby boy, no older than 2 or 3 years old, my mother used to rock me to sleep while singing a song in which the chorus was “Why does my heart go on beating? Why do these eyes of mine cry? Don’t they know it's the end of the world? It ended when you said goodbye…”

I vividly remembered this verse but not the rest of the song. So when I got home that afternoon I googled the lyrics. It was a song from Skeeter Davis that was recorded in the 1960s called ‘The End of the World’. I listened to it and was filled with emotion, for it was the first time I had heard it since I was 3 years old. It brought me back to those moments when my mother was rocking me to sleep.


What about you. What’s your very first memory? 

Monday, November 25, 2013

Someone else is thankful for less than what you have...



I think the quote above, to me, really illustrates what is at the heart of thankfulness. We are not thankful because we are happy – we are happy because we are thankful. In essence, thankfulness leads to happiness. When we can appreciate the good things in our lives, it leads to a sense of well-being.

Does this mean that everything in our life is peachy-keen? Of course not. As great as it would be, life doesn't work that way. But what we CAN do is spend a little more time being thankful for the good things in our lives.

No matter our struggles, there is always someone out there in the world who is struggling harder. Sometimes we should simply be thankful for the everyday things that we may take for granted: sanitation, running water, and a roof over our head.

It’s all about perspective. So as the day of thanks approaches, let us all find something, or someone, to be thankful for.

What does “being thankful” mean to you?

Monday, November 18, 2013

Dear Coffee, How I Love Thee


“No matter what historians claimed, BC really stood for "Before Coffee.” ~Cherise Sinclair

A little while back, I was in my local Starbuck’s when something funny occurred. The Starbuck's cashier wrote my first name on the cup without having to ask what my name was. It’s a very busy Starbuck’s so either A) I’m just that memorable or B) I am in there WAY too often. As much as I’d like to think it’s the former, I am quite certain it’s the latter haha. 

I think I am turning into something that a few years ago I vowed to never be…a coffee junkie. I even speak fluent “Starbucksian” now!! 

The Kuerig that I have in my office helps matters since I don't have to go to Starbuck's every time I need a coffee fix. Or it may actually hurt matters now that I can have coffee on whim any time I want. After about three cups of the stuff, I'm fairly confident I develop the ability to fly.

Perhaps there’s a 12-step program I can attend?
Are you a coffee aficionado?

Monday, November 11, 2013

Up Goes the Tree!!!


I held out as long as I possibly could, but my Christmas tree and decorations (above) finally went up last Sunday.

“Christmas waves a magic wand over this world, and behold, everything is softer and more beautiful.”  ― Norman Vincent Peale

This quote perfectly represents my feelings toward the holiday season. I am a lover of all things Christmas. I usually start listening to Christmas music sometime in early August (much to the chagrin of my co-workers and friends). As odd as it sounds, I get more excited about Christmas the older I get. I have a child-like love for the season and I hope I never lose that.

When do you start getting in the Christmas spirit? When does your tree usually go up??

Monday, November 4, 2013

Music is like Magic


“Without music, life would be a mistake” ~Friedrich Nietzsche

I often sit back and think about how a song takes each listener to a unique place. No two people “hear” a song the same. There’s just something so beautiful about that thought. The same song can cause a flood of happy memories for one person and a flood of sad ones for another. I don't know of any other art form that can do that.

Music touches us each in such different, yet significant, ways. It has a way of helping us find ourselves when we get lost. It has a way of reaching deep into a part of our soul and affecting the very core of our being. Music transports us. Is there anything that can take us back in time the way that music can?

For me, whenever I hear a song, I immediately associate it with the time period in which it came out. It reminds me of where I was in life, what I was doing in life, and who was in my life during that time period. It instantly brings back a flood of memories.

What does music do for you?

Monday, October 28, 2013

Dreaming of a Borderless World...


This picture really speaks to me. It’s amazing how thought-provoking a simple question can be. Borders are a man-made construct and concept. We speak of being one people yet we insist on separating ourselves. And for what purpose? I realize it’s a macro-level question but why do we live in a bordered world. Borders imply separation.

Perhaps one day my dream of a borderless world will become a reality and we can finally know Peace.
What are your thoughts on this picture?

Monday, October 21, 2013

My Favorite Scary Movies...

With Halloween fast approaching, I thought it would be fitting to list my 5 favorite scary movies of all-time!


Poltergeist
Two words: “They’re Heeeeeere…”


The Amityville Horror
When I first saw this as a little boy, I couldn't sleep for a week! 


The Grudge
This is, without a doubt, the scariest contemporary movie in my humble opinion.



The Shining
Watching Jack Nicholson’s slow decent into madness makes this the most well-acted, and well-directed, scary movie that I’ve ever seen.


Halloween
This has to be #1 on my list. From the musical score (which is the creepiest of all-time in my opinion), to the brooding/gloomy atmosphere of the town that it takes place in, Halloween is an all-time classic.

What’s your favorite scary movie(s)?

Monday, October 14, 2013

My love affair with clouds


“Clouds come floating into my life, no longer to carry rain or usher storm, but to add color to my sunset sky.” ~Rabindranath Tagore

Anyone who is a Facebook friend of mine or follows me on Instagram knows about my love affair with clouds. Few things in nature fascinate me the way that clouds do. They are Mother Nature’s very own Rorschach test. If you and a friend are looking at a cloud formation, chances are you’ll both see something completely different. In this respect, clouds are the most subjective thing in nature.

Another amazing thing about clouds is the fact that they are ever-changing…literally every second. A cloud formation at any given moment in time is unique to that moment and that moment alone. I mean how romantic a notion is that?

Do you take the time to appreciate the beauty in the clouds?

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

The Health Care Debate and our Middle-School Congress



I normally avoid political topics on my blog. Don't get me wrong, I have very strong political beliefs...it's just that I don't want this blog to become divisive.
As everyone knows, our government is now shut down. It’s really sad. I honestly cannot tell the difference between middle school and the United States Congress. Even when I squint my eyes they look and act the same. The impetus for the shutdown is the opposition to the Affordable Health Care Act.

The health care debate has really divided our country. People have very strong opinions either in favor of or in opposition to the Affordable Health Care Act. To me, it comes down to one question: Do you feel that health care is a right or a privilege?
What are your thoughts? Is health care a right or a privilege?

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Dreaming...

Dreams
“Dreams are true while they last, and do we not live in dreams?” ~ Alfred, Lord Tennyson
I’ve been having some very interesting dreams lately. You know, the kind that you wake up from thinking “What was that all about” or “I need to stop watching 'The Walking Dead' right before bedtime” or “After that dream, I think I need therapy”. Ever have any of those?
You know what would be fascinating? If we could somehow record our dreams for re-viewing during waking hours. Wouldn’t that be cool? Or maybe scary? Or maybe both.

I’ve always wondered what the meanings of our dreams are. Are they representations of our subconscious? Are they premonitions? Are they memories? Are they simply a rapid firing of the neurons in our brains as we sleep?
Whatever they are, they’re absolutely fascinating.

What do you think our dreams are? Where do you think they come from?

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

First Pets


“Until one has loved an animal, a part of one’s soul remains unawakened” ~ Anatole France

While visiting my parent’s house a couple of weekends ago, we were reminiscing about my first pet. He was a Border Collie named Boxie. He lived to be 13 years old. He was such a lovable dog and I have so many fond memories of him. He made me realize how powerful the love of an animal can be. They really do become family don’t they?

I’ll never forget Boxie and I was so glad that my mother held onto that picture :)
What was your very first pet? What was their name? Share your stories.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

My Favorite Things about Autumn


“Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.”Albert Camus

The leaves will soon be making their transition from green to the dazzling yellows, oranges and reds, and the chill in the air during some of the most recent mornings makes it clear that autumn is finally on its way.

I mean really, what’s not to like about Autumn? Here is but a short list:

Halloween! The number of people who consider Halloween their favorite holiday seems to be growing rapidly. Perhaps it’s because it brings out a childlike enthusiasm in us, or perhaps it’s simply that we love the scary movie marathons and haunted houses. Whatever the case, Halloween rocks!

Falling leaves. I love raking leaves in the fall. Sure it’s a chore, but there’s something fun about it. The sound of the leaves crunching as you walk through your yard is an oddly soothing sound. And as a kid, there was nothing like jumping into that mound of recently-raked leaves! It’s been years since I have partaken in that ritual, but it is one of my fondest memories.

Fresh air. Autumn’s cooler breezes arrive like a breath of fresh air, quite literally. There’s just something indescribable about the cleanliness of the autumn air. It brings with it the scent of rain, damp grass, and harvested fruits.

Football!! It has surpassed baseball as American’s pastime. College football on Saturdays and the NFL on Sundays...Yes please. P.S. Go Bengals.

Pumpkins. Whether you’re carving them for Halloween, or eating them in pie form for Thanksgiving, pumpkins are a stable of fall.

Autumn festivals. I love going to the small-town autumn festivals that take place in late September/early October. Live bands, funnel cakes, corn dogs, balloon lightings. It’s a wonderful time.

FALL BACK (You get an extra hour of sleep - need I say more?)

Thanksgiving. Family, food, and football…what more could you ask for?

Colors. The boundless green of summer transitions into a sizzling display of, scarlets, golds, and yellows! It doesn’t last long, but for those three weeks the forests come alive with a display of colors unlike anything on the planet.

Each season has its own list of things to love, but autumn is by far my favorite.

What is your favorite thing about autumn?

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

4,383 Days Ago...

9/11 picture: United Airlines Flight 175 crashing into the World Trade Center's south tower
I can’t believe it’s been 12 years since that fateful day. Since I hadn’t turned my TV on that morning while getting dressed, I walked out my door not having any idea what was transpiring. I’ll never forget turning on my car radio a few minutes later while driving to my job at Sonny’s BBQ Pit in Richmond, KY. It was surreal. I heard things like “Nationwide air travel has been suspended” and “There may be more planes in the air that have been hijacked”.

When I arrived at work a few minutes later, everyone was huddled around the manager’s office, where he had a small TV. It was then that I saw the magnitude of what was happening. The second plane had hit a few minutes earlier. Everyone was numb. I, along much most of the world, spent the rest of the day glued to the TV coverage.
It’s one of those moments in history in which everyone remembers where they were.

Where were you when the towers were hit?


Thursday, September 5, 2013

Random Acts of Kindness...


“No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted." - Aesop

If each of us did one small, random act of kindness for a complete stranger, the ripple effect would be immense and life-altering.  Whether it’s paying for the car behind you in the drive-thru, helping someone put groceries in their car, or even just opening doors or holding the elevator for people, these small acts make a huge difference.

Think of this for a second: You pay for the lady in the car behind you in the drive thru. She is so touched that she pays for the family behind her. That family is so touched that they pay for the gentleman behind them at the toll booth the following week.  That gentleman is so touched that, an hour later, he anonymously decides to pick up the tab for a young couple at the restaurant where he’s having lunch.  

See how contagious it can be?
Your decision to create that first random act of kindness has reached people that you would have never crossed paths with. It’s amazing isn’t it?

Have you ever been touched by a random act of kindness? Do you ever perform these acts of kindness?

Thursday, August 29, 2013

If you could meet any historical figure...


“Be the change that you wish to see in the world.”  ~Mahatma Gandhi

I have often pondered this question: If I could meet any historical figure, who would I choose? My answer has varied a lot throughout the course of my life. I must say though, that in recent years, my answer has been the same:  Mahatma Gandhi.

I have read a great deal about Gandhi over the past few years and I find his story to be absolutely fascinating. He believed strongly in expanding human being's capacity to love and to give. He also believed very strongly in devoting oneself to helping others. I find that incredibly inspirational. He believed that it was a privilege to give. What a wonderful way to think of giving.
He also was a strong believer in peace. It was his dream to see peace in the world. I can only hope that someday his dream may become a reality.

What about you? If you could meet any historical figure, who would you choose?

Saturday, August 24, 2013

As the end of summer nears...

sunset: sun setting over hills

Summer 2013 is slowly coming to a close. Sometimes I think I’ve blinked and missed it, as it has flown by amazingly fast. Summers often do that don’t they?
Summer is a time of memories made, adventures shared, and love discovered.

So as the days begin to grow a bit shorter and as the temperatures slowly start to creep down a degree or two per week, let us reflect back on summer for a bit.

What’s been the most memorable part of summer 2013 for YOU personally? What’s your greatest memory of this summer?

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

6 Years Ago Today...

I quit doing this...

Young woman smoking cigarette

It was the best (and hardest) thing I’ve ever done. Seeing my mamaw pass away due to lung cancer was the catalyst. I wasn't successful on the first attempt (or the second, third, fourth, or fifth for that matter), but ultimately I quit and never looked back. 

What’s the hardest habit you’ve ever broken? Is there one you’re working on breaking now?

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Politics...such a dirty word



During last weekend’s  visit to my family’s house, we broached the subject of politics during lunch (a mortal sin). I am the only one of my particular political persuasion in my family, so as you can imagine I am vastly outnumbered. I tend to be very vocal (albeit respectfully vocal) about my beliefs so things can sometimes be…animated.

I know when the subject of politics comes up that I should just keep things to myself to avoid a debate breaking out at dinner time but I just can’t help myself! I have to be the voice of reason :)

Why do politics arouse such an emotional response from us?  Do your family get-togethers ever devolve into a political debate?

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Love at First Sight?


Leonard Whiting and Olivia Hussey in the 1968 version of Romeo and Juliet.

Love at first sight. We’ve seen it in many a movie and read about it in many a Shakespearean story. I’ve always been intrigued by the concept and, as na├»ve as it sounds, I’ve always believed in it.

What about you dear readers? What are your thoughts on love at first sight? Is it hogwash? Real? Or something else?

Thursday, August 1, 2013

My Close Call...




While vacationing on the Gulf Coast last week I had the scariest moment of my life. I was caught in a rip current and dragged very far from shore. I didn’t even realize it until it had already pulled me out pretty far. It’s amazing how fast it can happen. I was able to get the attention of Lisa, who was on the beach. She ran to a beach-goer and had him call 911. She then risked her life by swimming all the way out to me and pulled me in (luckily she was on the swim team in high school). I still can’t believe she did that…but I’m damn thankful that she did.

As we got closer to shore, a total random stranger came out and pulled both of us the rest of the way in. Lisa said that when she felt her toes touch the ocean floor again (meaning we'd made it most of the way back in) that she felt more relieved than she'd ever felt in her life.

There were also strangers on the beach greeting us as we came back in, offering water, etc. The first responders had shown up by that time as well and were verifying that we were ok. We were so thankful to be alive and we were hugging random people lol.

The stranger who swam out to help us the rest of the way in had disappeared pretty quickly before we really had much of a chance to thank her. We were pretty numb and still in a bit of shock. We did get to hug her before she left though. I'll always wonder who she was and I hope she knows we're eternally thankful. Just as I am eternally thankful to Lisa for risking her life for me.

This was my first truly close call with death...where I actually thought to myself "I might die here and now". Definitely an eye-opening experience. Have you ever had a close call?

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Quick Update

Photo: Ocean floatin'

Hey blogging friends!! Just a quick update to say I'm still on vacation and playing in the ocean (as you can see in my picture above lol). I will resume normal visiting of your blogs next week :)

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Ocean, waves, and sand, oh my!


"When I walk down the beach and smell the salt water, hear the waves crashing against the shoreline, and feel the granular sand under my feet, I can't help but realize why I'm here on this earth." ~ Wendy Joubert
 
Tomorrow I'm heading to the beaches of Cape San Blas, on Florida's Gulf coast for seven days. There’s something so amazing about the beach. From the pristine waters, to the sound of the waves, to the feeling of the sand under your feet, it’s simply one of the nature’s most spectacular gifts. The sunsets are absolutely amazing…the most beautiful that I’ve ever seen.

But you know what really stands out? Even more so than the sunset? The moonlight. It’s amazing. In fact, my most enjoyable experience while at the beach is to sit by the ocean at night as the moon illuminates the ocean’s surface. I cannot even begin to describe it…words simply do not do it justice.

Beach stargazing is also amazing. The millions and billions of stars light up the sky in such a way that you simply cannot help but be completely transfixed. It's a great time for introspection and pondering life...I cherish moments like that.

In those moments the sounds of the ocean drown out the rest of the world. Sounds that speak to the soul. It's so easy to get lost in the beauty of it all. It's as if time does not move hour to hour anymore...it stands still. The most accurate way to describe it is that time moves from moment to moment instead. Moments that remain imprinted in our mind until the end of time. In a couple of days I'll be able to be lost in those sounds again.

Do you get to visit the beach very often? What do you love the most about the beach and ocean?

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Romanticizing the past...


The past is never where you think you left it." ~ Katherine Anne Porter
How many times in our life have we heard of how things “used to be”? I have always been fascinated by that – our romanticizing of the past.  We always hear that things "used to be" better. People "used to be" happier. Society "used to be" less corrupt. What is the source of these declarations?

I’m not making a value judgment here. Perhaps there is some truth to these statements. But did things really used to be better? They certainly weren’t for certain segments of society.
I can’t help but wonder if it’s simply a romanticizing of the past. We always look at the past through rose-colored glasses. Over time, our memories seem to exaggerate the good and minimize the bad.

We do the same thing with our personal lives as well.
Why do you think we romanticize the past? Do you find yourself doing this?

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Four Seasons...


Today’s blog post is just a simple question, since I’m curious.

Spring
Summer
Fall
Winter

Which is your favorite? And why?

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Cats and Dogs...


"If a dog jumps in your lap, it is because he is fond of you; but if a cat does the same thing, it is because your lap is warmer." ~ Alfred North Whitehead

Cats and dogs. I love them both for entirely different reasons. Dogs are unconditionally loving and affectionate. They always enthusiastically greet you when you arrive home. Cats on the other hand will sometimes stay on their cushion, look at you, and say to themselves “you again?” 

Dogs are social beings whereas cats are primarily solitary. Cats are very independent & unpredictable but incredibly entertaining. Cats do like attention, but only on their terms. Dogs, on the other hand, cannot get enough of your love and affection.

All in all, they are both fascinating and wonderful creatures and they make equally great pets, albeit in different ways.

Are you a cat person or a dog person?

Saturday, June 29, 2013

The Resiliency of a Broken Heart...


"Someday, someone will walk into your life and make you realize why it never worked out with anyone else" ~unknown

Two close friends of mine have experienced heartbreak recently. It's one of the toughest things that any of us could ever go through. Heartbreak leaves us with such a wide variety of emotions...and those emotions fluctuate so rapidly! One day you think you're fine and that you have finally moved on. The next day, something as simple as a song on the radio or a random memory will trigger a flood of tears.

As with any loss, working through heartbreak is a process...and there are no shortcuts in the process - as much as we wish there were. A common mistake people make is trying to fill the void with another person. I've made this mistake myself and learned a valuable lesson. How can we work on another relationship when we are still in the midst of working on ourselves and building ourselves back up? In the midst of heartbreak, it's good to take the time to work on healing your emotional wounds. Take up new hobbies, hang out with friends and family, change up your routine. It will take time, but you'll eventually begin to feel better than you ever thought you would!

You will love again of course...when you're healed and when you're ready. Once you're fully healed, your heart will be able to open up again and receive the love that you've only imagined! All heartbreaks are mere speed bumps on the road to your soul mate :-)

What have you learned from your experiences with heartbreak?

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

What is any ocean but a multitude of droplets?



Conventional wisdom seems to hold that one person cannot truly make a difference in the grand scheme of things. But is this really true? An exchange near the end of the movie "Cloud Atlas" had a profound effect on me. In the exchange, a cynical man tells an idealist “no matter what you do, it wouldn't amount to anything but a single drop in an ocean!” To which the idealist replied “But what is any ocean but a multitude of drops?”
Think about that quote for a second. “What is any ocean but a multitude of drops?”
It may be the most beautiful quote I’ve ever heard in my life. To me, the quote is saying that we are not drops that exist independently of one another, but rather we are all part of the ocean. I believe this illustrates the interconnectedness of every being on this earth.
What does this quote illustrate to you? Can one person truly make a difference in the world?

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Romancing the Storm...

Lightning Bolts Thunder Strike
"I get my best ideas during a thunderstorm. I have the power and majesty of nature on my side." ~Ralph Steadman

I love thunderstorms. I always have. I think they are one of Mother Nature’s greatest gifts. Ironically, I find thunder to be a very relaxing sound despite how loud it is. It’s very soothing in a unique way. I love how the thunder begins as a far off rumbling the then gets closer and closer until it fades. Thunderstorms bring with them anticipation and adrenaline.

I also find thunderstorms to be incredibly romantic. Thunderstorms have a way of stirring the romantic within us. The combination of the pouring rain, the rolling thunder, and the beautiful lightning is a recipe for true romanticism.

Do you like thunderstorms?

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Fate or Coincidence...?


“Destiny, with unbiased hands, sows the seeds of fate.” ~ Helen Cifuentes

I have always been fascinated by the fate vs. coincidence debate. To me, there are two different types of people in the world: Those who believe in fate, and those who do not. Those who believe in fate believe that there is a reason for everything. A chance encounter, for instance, is not just a chance encounter to the person who believes in fate. They believe that there is no such thing as an accident or coincidence.

On the other hand, there are those who believe that we mistake coincidence for fate. That a chance encounter is just that, a chance encounter.  That life’s randomness is the simple explanation for things that other people mistake as fate.

Where do you stand on this? Do you believe in fate and destiny or do you think we mistake coincidence for fate?

Monday, June 10, 2013

Namaste

Namaste
Sanskrit symbol for "Namaste"

One of the things on my bucket list is a tattoo. I have wanted to get a tattoo for quite some time actually. 2013 will be the year that I finally get one. After much deliberation, I have decided on getting the Sanskrit symbol for “Namaste”. The word “Namaste” is an acknowledgment of the soul in one by the soul in another.
As far as location, I am thinking either inner-forearm, below my collar bone, or on my ribcage. I am leaning towards inner-forearm but I am also intrigues by the other two. Either way, I’m excited at the possibilities!!

What are your thoughts on tattoos? Do you have one? If not, would you ever get one?

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Important changes to Blogger that 97.3% of you already know by now

Hi Friends!! As most of you likely know by now, Google Reader is going kaput on July 1st. As in, bye-bye, see you never again.

This doesn’t mean anything changes on YOUR blog – everything stays the same. What changes is that you will lose the blogs you follow via Google Reader (and they will lose you if they follow you that way) unless you migrate your followers to another site.  Most people are doing this through BlogLovin. I did it yesterday and it literally took me five minutes. Easy as pie! 

They will automatically transfer your Google Reader and GFC list over so you can keep getting updates from your favorite bloggers.

Bloglovin will also send you an email update every night (if you wish) with all the current blog posts.

So if you’re looking for a Google Reader alternative, hop on over to bloglovin through this link

My bloglovin’ link is directly to your left. No…your other left. 

Saturday, June 1, 2013

My Favorite Place to Hike...


"If you can't be in awe of Mother Nature, there's something wrong with you" ~Alex Trebek

Sunday afternoon I took advantage of the amazing weather and went hiking at a placed called The Pinnacles in Berea, KY. It is my favorite hiking destination. I normally go at least once per month. Once I arrived at the top, I simply sat and appreciated the view. This is my favorite part of hiking…just taking it all in. Something about the scenery makes you reach into a deeper part of your soul.

I took a moment to just sit there in silence and enjoy the sound of “nothingness”. No cars, traffic, machinery, etc. Just the sound of the wind whistling through the trees and the birds in the distance. It’s amazing what some time with Mother Nature can do for you. It was pure tranquility. The fact that the birds were singing in the distance at the top of their lungs made this experience every bit as powerful to the ears as it was to the eyes.

Do you get a chance to nature hike very often? If so, what type of area do you hike to?

Friday, May 24, 2013

The Romanticism of Books...


"A room without books is like a body without a soul.” ~ Marcus Tullius Cicero

Every once in a while I consider getting an eReader but then it dawns on me…I just love real books too much. I love going to old-fashioned book stores and libraries. I used to spend hours upon hours at the local library where I grew up…soaking up all the knowledge that I could.
I realize eReaders are convenient, but there's just something about a real book...

·         Holding it in your hands

·         Turning the pages

·         The wonderfully soothing aroma of the paper (particularly the old books)

·         Seeing your bookmark make its way through the progression of the story

·         Seeing the creases develop
With eReaders you just don't get that type of romanticism.

What about you. Do you have a love for real books?

Saturday, May 18, 2013

The Blogging Gender Disparity...

gender

Recently, one of my fellow bloggers wrote me an email and said that she’s always surprised when she sees a male blogger. Until I read that, I hadn't really thought too much about the gender disparity - even though I had noticed that female bloggers outnumber male bloggers.

So, as my curiosity got the best of me, I looked at the list of my blog followers. Of the 650-ish followers that I had at that time, only 59 were male. That’s like 8%! I hadn't realized that there was such a pronounced disparity. As someone who is fascinated by sociology and psychology, I find myself wondering why this is. Perhaps females tend to me more expressive with their writing and therefore more apt to start a blog? I am interested in your theories.
What do you make of this disparity? Why are there so few male bloggers? Any theories?

Saturday, May 11, 2013

A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words...



A coworker recently sent me the link to the story of this picture. It’s a picture of a Klan-robed toddler expressing curiosity about the riot shield of an African-American state trooper during a Klan rally in Georgia in 1992. The photographer who captured this image (Todd Robertson) has never been able to find out who the boy was. To this day it remains a mystery.

Here is an innocent toddler that has no concept whatsoever of hate or prejudice. Ever since I saw the picture, I have been filled with so many emotions and questions.  What is going through the mind of the State Trooper in this picture? What became of this little boy? Did he grow up with hate in his heart? Did he even have a chance?
What goes through your mind when seeing this picture?

Saturday, May 4, 2013

My Top 10 Favorite Movies


Last month, I blogged about my 10 favorite television shows . Today, I would like to blog about my 10 favorite movies of all-time! Without further adieu, here is my list !!


GOONIES
I could never get tired of this movie! This story is about a group of misfit youngsters in search of a long-lost ancient pirate ship filled with treasure. Watching this movie will bring out the little kid in you.


INCEPTION
I love movies that make me think, and Inception certainly does not disappoint in this regard. Inception involves a group of "dream travelers" who are tasked with travelling deep within someone's dreams to extract information; plundering the subconscious for secrets, and planting a few ideas there as well. It's about dreams within dreams within dreams...confused yet?


THE GODFATHER PART II
One of the rare occurrences where the sequel was better than the original, Godfather II was a cinematic masterpiece. Al Pacino's portrayal of the ruthless Michael Corleone was one of the most marvelous acting jobs in the history of cinema. What's amazing is that, at 3 hours and 20 minutes, the film doesn't seem long enough!


MULHOLLAND DRIVE
This movie was, by far, the most beautifully complicated move I've ever seen in my life...but it's done so masterfully. It's literally impossible to describe what it's about, as even the director himself has always been vague as to its true meaning. The movie is simply hypnotic...working in such a way that the viewer has a very difficult time differentiating between what's real and what's imagined. But it works...much like abstract art. You may not be able to explain what you're looking at, but you still cannot take your eyes off of it.


PULP FICTION
Filmed in a very unique non-chronological style, Pulp Fiction was pure genius. It's a film about American nihilism, forgiveness, and mercy in a hard and brutal world. Plus, it introduced us to the directorial talents of Quentin Tarintino!!


THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO
You know the conventional wisdom that the book is always better than the movie? This is the rare exception. The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo is about a crusading, disgraced journalist who teams up with a goth computer hacker to investigate the long-ago disappearance and possible murder of a wealthy industrial magnate's 16 year-old neice. Add to that the fact that the movie introduces us to one of the most memorable characters in the history of cinema (the aforementioned goth computer hacker, Lisbeth Salandar), and this movie is an absolute must see!


ATONEMENT
Atonement is a movie about a false accusation and it's subsequent effects on the lives of all the characters involved. Set in Europe during WWII, Atonement is a fantastic story of unrequited love, the search for truth, and as the title suggests, atonement.


RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK
For many years, this movie was my personal favorite. This story, about an archeologist's search for the Ark of the Covenant in the late 1930's, packed more adventure and intrigue into two hours of screen time than any movie I've ever seen.


INGLORIOUS BASTERDS
Inglorious Basterds centers around a group of soldiers who hunt and kill Nazi's in German-Occupied areas of Europe during WW II. Christopher Waltz's portrayal of the evil German "Jew Hunter" Hans Landa was A performance for the ages. The opening scene of this movie, an extended 20 minute conversation at a table in a cabin in rural France, is the best opening scene in movie history, in my humble opinion.


AMERICAN BEAUTY
Hands down, my favorite movie of all-time. Great writing, amazing acting performances, and beautiful cinematography (combined with one of the best musical scores I've ever heard) combine to make this movie truly amazing on every front. The movie centers around Lester Burnham, a discontented husband and father in an ordinary job, living an ordinary life, in an ordinary unnamed suburban town. This movie is about much more than Lester's journey to self-discovery however...it's about being alive. If you haven't seen this movie, rent it now!

What's your favorite movie or movies?

Monday, April 29, 2013

Buckets and Lists...


Last year I made a rough draft of my bucket list and blogged about it. Over the past year, I have added some things here and there. This past weekend, I wrote everything down and and made my first official bucket list! The list is as follows:
Go on a road trip without knowing the destination

Go parasailing

Visit the Amazon Rain Forest

Visit Ireland.

Visit Alaska.

Go kayaking.

Save a life.

See the Northern Lights.

Fly a kite.

Go to Bora Bora

Reach 100% debt freedom

Go skiing

Learn to speak French

Visit the Serengeti National Park

Run a marathon

Hike the Appalachian Trail

Visit Stonehenge

Scuba dive in the Great Barrier Reef

Learn ballroom dancing

Spend New Year’s Eve in Times Square

See a moonbow

Visit Victoria Falls

Swim with the dolphins

Get a tattoo

Send a message in a bottle

Watch a meteor shower

Spend a Christmas in England

Do you have a bucket list? What's one thing (or more than one thing) on your list that is very important for you to accomplish in your lifetime?