Creative Intelligence: 16 Principles To Live By…

“Nowhere can a man withdraw to a more untroubled quietude than in his own soul. Grant yourself this withdrawal continually, and refresh yourself.” Marcus Aurelius Creative Intelligence: 16 Principles To Live By... ♥ Order is present everywhere ♥ Life is found in layers ♥ Outer depends on inner ♥ Seek the highest first ♥ Rest and activity are the steps of progress Last week (3/25), on Oprah Winfrey‘s Next Chapter documentary series, she showcased America’s Most Unusual Town; a Transcendental Meditation enclave organized by the Maharishi School ...

Weird & Unusual: Bat Face Cuphea

Now that it is October, here at Fun Flower Facts Flower Blog, we can’t help but think about Halloween-themed flowers, like this “Bat Face Cuphea.” Bat Face Cuphea (Cuphea lluvea) is a mounding perennial shrub native to Mexico that is cultivated for its masses of bright red tubular flowers with dark purple centers that resemble a bat’s face (hence the nickname). The plant will grow to 1-2 feet tall. The evergreen leaves are lance-shaped and hairy. Bat face Cuphea will add a ...

Fun and Creative Garden Planters and Containers

Forget about using flower pots! Add personality and fun to your garden with some of these planter ideas. Plus, you will be helping the environment by keeping these items from the landfill. 1. Got an old useless car in your garage? Turn it into a planter! 2. Or maybe a bike, which is a lot more affordable! 3..   Got too many shoes and don’t know what to do? You can turn some of your shoes into garden planters. 4.  Repurpose old furniture, like drawers, ...

Inspiration: Live by Faith Not by Fear…

Tell your heart that the fear of suffering is worse than the suffering itself. And no heart has ever suffered when it goes in search of its dream. Paulo Coelho Inspiration: Live by Faith Not by Fear… scared child at night What are you most afraid of? What lingering fear still has a hold on you? Fear is a very powerful emotion… It can paralyze us and prevent us from living life fully. At its most insidious, it becomes a pathology; resulting ...

On Life: Taking Risks…

“Risk! Risk anything! Care no more for the opinions of others, for those voices. Do the hardest thing on earth for you. Act for yourself. Face the truth.” Katherine Mansfield On Life: Taking Risks... requires walking through an unknown door Taking Risks… requires walking through an unknown door Life itself is a risk… Every day we step outside our door to carry on our daily activities, the potential for harm is increased. Sometimes, we perform actions that carry enormous risks. For instance, ...

Peculiar Picture #13

Some of my new followers might not be familiar with a Chubby Chatterbox feature called Peculiar Pictures. I was a professional illustrator for many years and much of my work was done on spec or for my own amusement. I have a file cabinet of “peculiar pictures” that have yet to sell. Many of these images just popped out of my head, like this one showing me in an uncharacteristically surreal mood. Like you, I can only guess what it ...

Orchid named after Will and Kate

You know you are important when… you get a flower named after you, of course! The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge were in Singapore recently to attend an orchid naming ceremony. It was a very special occasion, indeed! They royal couple were being honoured with their own orchid at the Singapore Botanic Gardens. The free-flowering orchid was named “Vanda William and Catherine” to represent the marriage of the royal couple. The stunning white flowers with purple spots are about 8 cm in ...

Reflections: Seeking Solace In Tragic Times…

“I am sick of the solace of sorrow, And fear what the prophets foretold; I am tired of the tears of tomorrow, And wish that things were as of old; I have felt of the force of the fetters, I have drunk of the draught that embitters, And all is not gold.” Algernon Charles Swinburne Reflections: Seeking Solace In Tragic Times… May We all seek Peace By now, most of us have heard or read about the terrible massacre of innocent movie-goers in Aurora, Colorado. My ...

Pregnancy Update – Home Stretch!

This may be one of the final pregnancy updates I’ll post until our baby boy arrives. My wife has crossed 38 weeks gestational age for the pregnancy – so he’ll be a full term. Things have moved so fast since we discovered our family was expanding and we decided to share it publicly here. We’ve provided developmental milestones via the awesome web site BabyCenter.com. Here’s what’s happening at week 38: Your baby has really plumped up. He weighs about 6.8 pounds and he’s more ...

Book Review: Love Wins by Rob Bell

I don't think I've reviewed a book that has been as controversial and had as much written about it as Rob Bell's latest offering titled Love Wins.  Interestingly, much of the opposition to Bell's book comes from individuals who admit to not reading it.  Ironically, I have read it and have some thoughts. In the interest of full disclosure, I've been a fan of virtually everything I've read of Rob Bell's thus far. In past books, he's fearlessly tackled a host ...

Fearless Floating

Did you ever get an idea and then when you follow through with it it turns out all wrong? “Huh?” You say, screwing your face up into a confused mud puddle. You taste the soup and it’s too salty; you compare the photo to your painting and yours looks like a one dimensional rendition of cartoon meets real world. You date a dream boat only to find out that he has leaks. Not only is he not sea worthy… he’s ...

5 Toughest Lessons Every Parent Must Learn

This year I’m trying to extend the reach of my writing into a variety of new online and offline publications and outlets. Today, I have an article featured on the Parenting Section of Suite101. This is kind of a big deal for me, because two years ago Suite101 rejected my application to submit articles to its site stating that my submissions were too personal. I applaud those writers who have their content readily accepted by the editors at sites such as Suite101 because ...

Spirituality Yea or Nay … or Whatever

Author: Volk; Publisher: HarperOne When I see a book trailer that intrigues me, and especially if it’s on a topic I may have reservations about, I Google the title to see who published it and what may have been written about the book already. Today I was intrigued by the trailer (link provided below) on Fringe-ology by Steve Volk. The book was published by HarperOne, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers that specializes in influential books on personal growth, religion, spirituality, and ...

4 Rules for Game Night in Our Home

My parents didn’t frequently play board games with us five kids growing up. But when they did, it was awesome! Our favorite board games were the classics – Clue, Monopoly, Life, Sorry, Careers, Pay Day and Stop Thief…to name a few. Sometimes my parents would win, sometimes  one of us kids would win. However, depending on the “family dynamic” of any given game night (e.g. which kid blamed who for breaking a living room lamp…etc.) an acute case of Sore Loseritis would most likely ...

I'm a Creature of Habit....

This is a busy time of year at my fulltime job, I work at a biotech company that produces medicines for a few different types of infectious diseases. The respective seasons for those respiratory conditions are winding down. However, the ramp-up and planning for vaccinations that begin this fall are already underway. The resulting work-related meetings have occupied my lunch hours for the past few weeks – and that’s my feeble excuse as to why I’ve not been able to attend ...

3 Keys to Accomplish the Impossible

3 Keys to Accomplish the Impossible

All of us face challenges every day and some of those challenges seem like they are impossible to overcome - that failure is the only option. Here's an easy challenge for you. Watch this video below by Frisbee-Throwing Champion Brodie Smith. Some of the things he does in this video are seemingly impossible, yet he did them. For him to accomplish each of the impossible tricks shown in the video there are 3 keys required: 1.) Vision - anybody who wants to ...

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Share Your World

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To participate in Share Your World, click here 1) What was the last URL that you bookmarked? The last URL I bookmarked was Vivian Delores, which is a blog I just started in memory of my mom. I am not quite sure what all I will do with it, but page 1 is finished. 2)For relaxation, would you …

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Closing the Window

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Fact-based: After another long day in the classroom, Sarah went home to take a short afternoon nap. Teaching elementary school seemed to be in her blood, as it was the chosen profession of her mother and grandparents. As she stared at the ceiling fan moving slowly, she reflected back on her thirty-five years of life and …

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How to Paint a Chair

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She rummaged around her paint shelf for the stain she’d used so inexpertly eight years ago on the garden furniture. Was it still there? She’d recently purged the basement of truckloads of detritus accumulated over the years. Much of it, including many old cans of paint, was recycled at various points around the city. Could …

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Out Of Hell

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Fiction to help celebrate Halloween: A shiver runs through me when I think back to the time when Tammy, my wife of five years, came to the conclusion that the gray tabby who’d lived contentedly with us since we bought her on our honeymoon, was lonely. Tammy convinced me that Sausalito, “Saucy” needed another feline to …

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Conclusion: Ghost of Kilarney Park

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If you missed Part One, check it out here. Haunted houses and Halloween go together like dots on dice, but the haunted house on our street never did anything to attract trick-or-treaters. So why was there a light burning on Verna’s porch? My feet began pulling me to the light. My head swirled with thoughts of murder: …

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Ghost of Kilarney Park

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In keeping with the season I’m reposting a true Halloween story from my memoir The Kid in the Kaleidoscope. I hope you enjoy it: Haunted houses belong in the realm of goose bumps, foggy nights and old neighborhoods, not pristine suburbs with freshly asphalted streets, unblemished sidewalks and immature trees. But a ghost lingered across the …

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The Boy Left Behind at a Funeral Home

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EdiTOR’s Note: Whether you’re dead, not dead or undead – funeral homes are no fun. But I’m thrilled to share this guest post about a funny funeral home memory from blogging buddy Clay Morgan. Clay is launching his new book this week Undead: Revived, Resuscitated, and Reborn and the story below is adapted from the book – which I …

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