Frog Blog, Grace, Hope, Love, Prayers, Troubled Waters, Uncategorized, Writing

Status: Extinct?

I started dabbling in poetry a few weeks ago. In Leo Buscaglia’s book Love, published in 1972, Buscaglia wrote that without close ties with humans, an infant can regress, developmentally lose consciousness, fall into idiocy and die. Well-loved hearts live well.

A child may have a perfect physical environment, superb diet, and hospital-type hygiene but these contributions do not seem to be enough for his physical and mental development. Buscaglia referenced studies conducted by Drs. Fritz Ridel, David Wineman, and Karl Menninger who found that physical need for togetherness and love becomes the major drive of an individual’s life. Lack of love is the major cause of severe neuroses and psychoses in adulthood.

Inspired by Love, I share my fledgling stages of a newly discovered interest. (Ironically, I needed technology and a screen to post my amateur poem).

close up of heart shape

Status: Extinct?

Could our culture self-destruct at this high-speed internet pace?
Plugged in to overloaded devices
Electrocuted by short circuits of attention
We stopped using dial up to hear a voice, a laugh, a cry.
Body language sends busy signals
Disconnected from personal contact.
Wireless connection
Hands-free, hug-free.
Unlimited access to air waves, limited access to hand waves
Let your fingers do the walking, texting someone in the next room.
Social media actions, anti-social consequences?
Well-loved hearts live well.
Will we be screened in and die from loneliness?

Frog Blog, Grace, Hope, Lighthearted Humor, Love, New Starts, Prayers, Troubled Waters, Uncategorized, Writing

RENTING BENEFITS, OWNING JOY

When my husband and I sold our house four years ago and chose to rent, we sorted our possessions. We are minimalists, so the sifting process was…well, minimal. (We would have a much “different” experience if we were packing Tig’s race shop though)!

We moved to a nine-building complex and met a few neighbors. Like our possessions, Tig and I are social minimalists. We are friendly without engaging in most party invitations. Shortly after moving in, I met a retired neighbor who is also a published author. Despite my introverted nature, she and I connected.

Bettye Jean and I exchanged our books and short conversations until she moved to assisted living. At first, I visited her often in her new home and gradually our communication decreased. Bettye Jean and I are what our granddaughter calls “short-term friends.” Short-term friends are people she meets once at a park or a birthday party.

apartment architecture balcony building
Photo by Tirachard Kumtanom on Pexels.com

I have been surprised that renting has taught me about healthy detachment. Each month, I watch heavily loaded moving vehicles being laboriously unpacked. The movers look exhausted and many ask why they keep so much stuff.

We’ve had quiet and considerate neighbors. We’ve also had rude neighbors. I’ve learned that unlike Tig and I, many occupants at this complex aren’t long-term residents. This four-year observation has taught me to appreciate the easier-to-love people, and become less irritated with the “minimally polite” tenants.

I frequently reflect on my temporary deployment on earth and ponder heaven’s victory. Renting supports my longstanding value to focus on eternal rewards. I appreciate that with less filling, unburdened joy is more full filling.

Flowing with a free spirit toward Larger Oceans,
Christina

…and the wise heart will know the proper time and procedure (Ecclesiastes 8:5).

Frog Blog, Grace, Hope, Lighthearted Humor, Love, New Starts, Prayers, Troubled Waters, Uncategorized, Writing

Everything, but not everything at once

This FROG Blog comes from a writing contest I entered last year. The contest invited people to use the prompt, “In 200 words or less, put your New Year’s Resolution in writing.” I’ve used it to remind myself to respect processing times (especially when I try to leap ahead on the lily pad of life).

FROG paddling with 2020 vision for a new year, Christina

Eccl. 3: 1-8, An Author’s Living Translation
There’s a time for everything, but not everything all at once.

To everything there is a season,
A time for every purpose under heaven:

A time for “In the Beginning,”
A time for “The End;”

A time to query,
A time to publish;

A time to let a story die,
A time to resurrect a plot;

A time for drafting,
A time for editing;

A time to celebrate an assignment,
A time to face a rejection letter;

A time to read tragedy,
A time to read comedy;

A time to buy books,
A time to sell books;

A time for writer’s flow,
A time for writer’s block;

A time for researching,
A time for writing;

A time for fiction,
A time for non-fiction;

A time to read others’ writing,
A time to have others read my writing;

A time to interview,
A time to be interviewed;

A time for novels,
A time for magazines;

A time for writer’s conferences,
A time for writer’s retreats.

There’s a time for everything, but not everything all at once.

Frog Blog, Grace, Hope, Lighthearted Humor, Love, New Starts, Troubled Waters, Uncategorized

Shopping ideas for a minimalist

I practice material minimalism. “Less is more and even less is even more” appeals to me (I try not to practice this minimalistic approach when it applies to patience, kindness, generosity…).

Christmas and birthdays can invite a challenge because people ask, “If you don’t like extra material possessions, what am I supposed to get you?” Consumables and outings!

Below, I’ve listed my favorite gifts. At the end, I encourage readers to offer their creative non-material present ideas!

anniversary birthday blur bokeh
Photo by Tim Mossholder on Pexels.com

My favorite things

Citrus or bakery scented candles (no lavender, rose, or perfume smells)
Dark chocolate (especially when blended with fruit or nuts)
Target and Wal-Mart gift cards (the only places I shop to replace shoes and essential clothing)
Blue, Purple, or Green Bic Roller Pens (no gel or felt tip jobbies)
Postage stamps (I really like this year’s FROG ones)!
Note cards and thank you cards (blank inside)
Retreat center stays
Grocery store gift cards (love to cook and bake! I have recipes to last for eternity)
Workshops/Classes/Seminars/Conferences
Music concert tickets
Cabin vacations
Theatre tickets
Figure skating shows
Fellow dream chaser to experience 1 of my 100+ lifetime dreams with me (so far, I’ve gotten to achieve 64 out of 107 from my Dream List)
Donation to humane society, dog rescues
Dunkin Donut coffee
Turtlenecks in every color (the kind that go all the way up the neck)
Double sized bed flannel sheet sets (I can never be too warm)

Readers! Your turn! What are your creative ideas to give someone who defines themselves as a “non-materially interested minimalist”? 

Leaping into the holiday lily pad of life from the FROG Blog,

Christina

 

Frog Blog, Grace, Hope, Lighthearted Humor, Love, New Starts, Prayers, Troubled Waters, Uncategorized

Voice Texts

When communication methods shifted to an electronic wave, I found myself saddened by a loss of personalized connection. This sadness surprised me because as an introvert I require abundant quietness. I thrive with large margins of isolation, but I’m not  accustomed to loneliness.

I socialize through snail mail cards, one-on-one walks, or phone calls. People who used to exchange phone calls started answering voice mails with texts. Sometimes within a minute of my voice mail, I’d receive a text, “Thanks for your voice mail. It was nice to hear your voice.” Based on their quick response, I figured the person was available to talk so I immediately called them back, only to be greeted by their recorded voice mail message.

marketing office working business
Photo by Negative Space on Pexels.com

Our son travels for his job and often there is a three-hour time zone difference between us. He and my husband exchange texts. I send cards and emails, but because of these time zone variances, we’ve missed “live” communication.

Last time we talked on the phone, our one-hour visit was flooded with updates and we hung up with still more to say. Neither of us are fans of lengthy phone calls so sometimes it’s weeks between verbal conversations. Our son understands why I’m unable to text and we joke that as soon as he handwrites a letter to me, I’ll text him back to let him know I received it.

Instead of continuing our communication gap, we began “voice texting.” We agreed to call each other Monday through Friday and leave a one-to-two-minute voice message. These messages may include a question to ponder, a funny story, an inspirational quote, quick family news, or a song that reminds us of something.

He knows I take lunch between 11:30-12:30 Eastern Time so when he sees my number come up during that time, he knows I’m leaving a “verbal text.” After work, I turn off my phone and when he gets home late in the evening, he leaves a return “voice text.” These daily two-minute investments have yielded stronger return than our bi-monthly marathon phone calls did.

I’m grateful for this unscreened connection that has built our mother-son relationship. H

Happy Thanksgiving week from the lily pad of life,

Christina