Monday Mood: Written Inspiration

Joan Didion

Joan Didion with her typewriter in Brentwood, 1988 (Photograph: Nancy Ellison)

Chance and choice converge to make us who we are, and although we may mistake chance for choice, our choices are the cobblestones, hard and uneven, that pave our destiny. They are ultimately all we can answer for and point to in the architecture of our character. Joan Didion captured this with searing lucidity in defining character as “the willingness to accept responsibility for one’s own life” and locating in that willingness the root of self-respect.

The dismal fact is that self-respect has nothing to do with the approval of others — who are, after all, deceived easily enough; has nothing to do with reputation, which, as Rhett Butler told Scarlett O’Hara, is something people with courage can do without.

Self-respect is something that our grandparents, whether or not they had it, knew all about. They had instilled in them, young, a certain discipline, the sense that one lives by doing things one does not particularly want to do, by putting fears and doubts to one side, by weighing immediate comforts against the possibility of larger, even intangible, comforts.

To free us from the expectations of others, to give us back to ourselves – there lies the great, singular power of self-respect. – Joan Didion.

Souce: Brain Pickings.

Brain Pickings is a free Sunday digest of the week’s most interesting and inspiring articles across art, science, philosophy, creativity,  books, and other strands of our search for truth, beauty, and meaning.

Full Article:

https://www.brainpickings.org/2012/05/21/joan-didion-on-self-respect/

 

 

Advertisements

May Days

The Prelude to warmer days, wiser ways and bits of craze.

Photos of Cherry Blossoms in the Spring (Vancouver) – Lisa King

“Character is the willingness to accept responsibility for one’s own life and the source from which self-respect springs.” – Joan Didion

 

Feel-good Friday: the BIGGEST little FARM

Everything has a purpose – this documentary will go to prove.  If you want to be INSPIRED YOU NEED TO SEE THIS FILM.  No excuses.

Part of the Palm Springs International Film Festival (PSIFF) lineup in January,  it’s playing in major cinemas May 10th.

Short Synopsis: Idealistic city dwellers John and Molly Chester bought a farm on arid land an hour north of Los Angeles. Their eight-year struggle to turn Apricot Lane Farms into a biodiverse Eden is chronicled in this astonishing and uplifting epic.

Watch Trailer:

https://www.firstshowing.net/2019/official-trailer-for-wonderful-documentary-the-biggest-little-farm/

 

 

Jill & Robert – Dinomite Rock Stars

Just Imagine

I sometimes wonder why I’m so drawn to certain crystals.  Maybe it’s because I love their simplistic down-to-earth beauty.  After all, they’ve been gracing the planet for centuries. I feel like they enhance my space. Even though I don’t know everything about them, rocks, gems and crystals have in varying degrees, graced spaces in places of my home for many years.  If they come with healing properties, all the more power to them! As I’m learning more about what they stand for it’s interesting to note that people seem to be more attracted to some stones over others. There might be a reason behind this.

Which brings me to this story.

Jill and Robert Carroll were recently married in Arizona. Robert is the son of my dear friend Lynda and I’ve been hearing about how fantastic Jill is for over a year now which is when they met. Jill and Robert reside in Boise, Idaho and run a very successful rock and gem business called Dinomite. This rock solid (pun intended) couple are constantly traveling to source new material for their ever growing company. What Jill started and accomplished is very inspiring to me and I was intrigued to learn more.  Especially since she coerced her husband to quit his banking job to work alongside her in this booming business.

Robert + Jill – taken from website

In Jill’s words:

Starting out as a lifetime hobby, in 2009 I decided to make this my career.
Investing all my saving and leaving a good paying job to start my own business turned out to be more rewarding then I could ever imagine. Not only do I get to meet the best of the best in mining around the world but I also get to speak with peaceful like minded customers every day to help them find the perfect crystal or stone. My husband left his “boring” banking job and now we get to work side by side everyday with our 4 employees including my best friend, my sister… oh and our dogs are always somewhere roaming the shop or rock yard.

Thank you for supporting our family run business. Jill Carroll

amethyst
malachite

We just returned from our winter buying shows. Our suppliers around the world have once again spent countless hours collecting the finest material for us. We are excited to bring you new inventory that we have hand selected ourselves.

SHOP Dinomite Rocks and Gems on ebay:  

https://www.ebay.com/str/dinomiterocksandgems

Like them on Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/DinomiteRocksandGems/

Just like them in generalReally; what’s not to like?

 

Tammy’s Wall Art

I’m inspired by other people’s choices of home décor including artwork.  Art tells a lot about a persons personality.

Artist: Michael Poitier from Montreal

My friend Tammy (who obviously has a penchant for champagne, dogs & Palm Springs) has invited me over for several really scrumptious dinners including the one where I first met Daniel (the artist) and his partner Karl.  In fact, this dynamic duo was responsible for re-designing Tammy and her husband David’s beautiful condo which is also situated on the same golf course.  There’s something tranquil about facing a golf course.  Tammy and David reside in Palm Springs for the winter preferring to escape the rainy (and now snowy) Vancouver landscape.

For this post I wanted to feature some of their artwork

by Gary Dorothy; Imageville Gallery  (this is in their hallway)
Will Alistair in the living room.
Pamela Masik original.  If you look closely you can find images of people + animals.
Artist: Connie Townsend
Artish: Connie Townsend.  Bichon pets Timbit & Lily Bella in a car that used to belong to Tammy. fyi: they weren’t really driving.
Tracy Verdugo

How about you? Are you inspired by other people’s artwork?

 

 

Feel-good Friday:  Spaces & Places

Here in Palm Springs

Photos: d. king

There’s no lack of decadent little hidden gems that I’ve encountered tucked behind the hedges of unassuming boutique hotels, alleyways and restaurants. I’ve discovered so many attractive spots since the last time I was here.  These photos were taken from a narrow corridor at the”La Plaza” shopping centre which used to house workers and now instead, a handful of quaint little shops.

I’ve discovered some secret bars inside of a few restaurants that I’ve been to and didn’t  know about until someone in the know showed me….very inconspicuous. One is hidden behind a phone booth (really!) and the other behind an ordinary curtain.  I love that!

I’m spending time scouting cool locations for my Destinations page.  And let me tell you what a pleasure it is to do so.  It’s a pleasure! I’ll share them with you soon.

Getting back to Film Fest:  Since my last post I’ve viewed two foreign films.  “Everybody Knows” (Todos los Saben) shot in Spain with Penelope Cruz and her sexy real life husband Javier Bardem centering around a kidnapping at a family wedding and Israeli film “Working Woman” about a married woman with children who takes a  job selling high end real estate, only to encounter a “me too” experience when her boss tries to sexually abuse her in the workplace.   Both films were extremely well done.

After my hike tomorrow I’m looking forward to an independent film which centers around gambling, two documentaries from Mr. Rogers to Aretha Franklin on Saturday – (could they be more opposite?) and a Hollywood ending on Sunday.  I’ll be reviewing these throughout the week.

Have a Happy Weekend

 

 

 

 

 

Moving forward as another year comes to a close…

Reflections on what 2018 taught me

About Staying Strong: while I lean towards improving overall bodily strength in the new year, 2018 was mostly about building inner strength.  Inner strength will help get you through tough times and give you the courage to move forward.  That, plus a good glass of wine and a hearty laugh.  Speaking of;

My witty friend Michael has this to say about humour: humour is like a tickle with a pitchfork.   The purpose of using humour is about expressing aggression, fear, taboo desires and life’s absurdities in an engaging and entertaining way.

About Feeling it Fully – the good, the bad and the ugly.  Learning to embrace it all whatever that may be.  Staying open. Learning to accept whatever life throws my way has been a happy, hurtful, grateful, sad, sometimes infuriating, overall empowering learning experience.

I like this excerpt from Living Beautifully with Uncertainty and Change by Pema Chödrön:

You build inner strength through embracing the totality of your experience, both the delightful parts and the difficult parts. Embracing the totality of your experience is one definition of having loving-kindness for yourself.

About Relationships: when you spend more time analyzing a relationship than enjoying it – something is wrong.  But you know what? – maybe we should try to analyze what’s wrong.  Because maybe we can resolve it; or not! If it’s worthwhile it will be resolved. In the meantime….respect is essential and enjoyment is key.  As Oscar Wilde once said:

Never love anyone who treats you like you’re ordinary.

About Good Girlfriends: always keep your girlfriends close – they are a gift.  They’re the ones who know you, know what’s good for you and how to make you laugh. A good friend will always stab you in the front. ― Oscar Wilde

About Dogs.  No matter what, they never change.  They love you for all that you are and all you’re not.  I aspire to be the person my dogs think I am.

About Life: it’s pretty simple actually….if you keep it simple.  Confucius said: Life is really simple but we insist on making it complicated. 

About making a leap:

Most importantly of all, there’s hope, perhaps the most powerful force in life.

Wishing you a Happy Holiday!

Website:  https://www.ihg.com/evenhotels/hotels/us/en/reservation

 

 

Forest of Hope

One Enchanted Evening

L to R: Stacey Harris, Lisa King, Maggie Parsons, Debbie King.
Photo: Stacey Harris
Pretty Prosecco Lady – YES PLEASE!
Top L: Kimberly & Maggie (Colleen’s niece) Top R: Paying tribute to Colleen Kohse on the big screen. Colleen was the longest living heart/double lung transplant recipient in Canada. In fact it was pointed out to me that she narrowly missed making it into the Guinness Book of World Records for being the longest survivor. Nonetheless she was a trailblazer and tireless volunteer in support to patients and families living with CF.  Bottom middle : Larry Kohse (Colleen’s brother) with Debbie King. Bottom L + R:  a pretty forest nymph and greeter with photos and names of young people living with CF.  Photos: Stacey Harris.

It was a bittersweet event at Vancouver’s Fairmont Waterfront Hotel last Saturday for the annual 65 Roses Gala to benefit cystic fibrosis (CF) because of the absence of my BFF Colleen Kohse.  As The Globe & Mail wrote for some, Colleen’s very existence was hope itself. 

CBC TV and radio journalist Gloria Macarenko was the host of this annual fundraiser along with Jeremie Saunders of the Sickboy podcast. Jeremie if you don’t already know, lives with CF.

Gloria mentioned something eerie but special to me at the start of the evening.  She said last April she opened up her phone and the first thing that popped up on her screen without her searching for it, was a photo of her and Colleen from last year’s gala.  Then very shortly after that, a phone call explaining that Colleen had passed away that day.  It does make one wonder.

The evening began with a delicious signature lavender-infused gin + rosemary cocktail, prosecco and full bar.  In otherwords; no lack of alcohol.

Beautiful songstress Amanda Wood started off the evening with a gorgeous rendition of “This is Me” from The Greatest Showman along with help (not that she needed it) from a choir.

We ate a delicious multi course dinner with wine pairings and were able to peruse the silent auction items online as well as outside the ballroom.  Our photographer Charles doubled as the auctioneer for live auction items and did a fantastic job – multi-talented is he.  Entertainment followed which had pretty much everyone on the dance floor for late night dancing.

The 18th annual 65 Roses gala was proudly presented by B2Gold Corp. The evening was of course dedicated to finding a cure for cystic fibrosis, Canada’s most common inherited fatal disease.

Since its founding in 2001, the 65 Roses Gala has raised more than $4 million for CF research and patient advocacy.

We hope to continue to do more so that CF can finally stand for “Cure Found.”

 

To find out more and/or make a donation please visit:

https://www.cysticfibrosis.ca/