Category Archives: Neil Gaiman

Something Good

ericlongwinter031. Time to Thrive, transcript of speech given by Ellen Page on Huffington Post, in which she says,

You’re here because you’ve adopted as a core motivation the simple fact that this world would be a whole lot better if we just made an effort to be less horrible to one another. If we took just 5 minutes to recognize each other’s beauty, instead of attacking each other for our differences. That’s not hard. It’s really an easier and better way to live. And ultimately, it saves lives.

Then again, it’s not easy at all. It can be the hardest thing, because loving other people starts with loving ourselves and accepting ourselves.

2. Wisdom from Lodro Rinzler, “Gentleness to oneself is the foundation of the entire meditative path.”

3. How “Fearless” is the new perfectionism from Your Courageous Life.

4. Let thanks land from Jonathan Fields.

5. A Photo Essay: The Lone Tree from Tammy at Rowdy Kittens.

6. Wisdom from Brave Girls Club,

The crazy life is oh so tempting….ohhhh sooooo tempting. It is tempting to go go go and prove prove prove and seek seek seek for apPROVE-al, isn’t it? It is tempting to do what everyone else is doing…and to make it shiny and sparkly and perfect and wonderful and to sacrifice anything and everything to make it so. It is oh-so-easy to get caught up in the competition…in the comparing…in the craziness of what it *seems* like everyone else is doing.

Beautiful friend…pay attention very closely to how you feel when you are giving in to this kind of temptation. Pay attention to how it feels to go faster than you really have strength to go….to prove that you are just as good, or just as wonderful, or just as talented. Pay attention to how it feels to constantly seek for the approval of others. Pay attention to how it feels to enter into the competition…to compare your life with the life of others. If it doesn’t feel good, any of it…….it’s time to evaluate it all.

Sometimes we get so caught up in this way of living that we forget that there is another way to live. There really is another way to live, beautiful soul. We don’t have to enter in to the crazy life…and even when we do….we really can walk away.

It is worth the hard decision of turning around and walking away from a crazy life that doesn’t make sense. It is always always always worth it to go where the peace is….where the best stuff is…….where we can just BE and not feel like we have to BE ENOUGH. We are ALL already enough.

Go where the peace is, sweet girl. You were always meant to have peace.

7. How an On-Air Panic Attack Improved My Life by Dan Harris.

8. Wisdom from Kris Carr, “Confidence and self-reliance come from a deep trust in yourself. You know that you’ve got your back and that no matter what, you will not abandon yourself.”

9. Wisdom from Meryl Streep, “This is your time and it feels normal to you, but really, there is no normal. There’s only change and resistance to it and then more change.”

10. Artist Turns Fellow Train Passengers Into Funny Cartoon Characters with His Post-It Note Doodles.

11. Remembering Maggie Estep from Neil Gaiman.

12. What I won’t and will miss, a list from Norah Ephron.

13. Uncommon Advice to Heal a Broken Heart, Susan Piver on Huffington Post.

14. College Students Scared Straight Prank. I don’t want to laugh, but I can’t help it.

15. A Lost Dog Story from Mark Hass.

16. Wisdom from Henry Miller, “Let us do our best, even if it gets us nowhere.”

17. Truthbombs from Danielle LaPorte: “Be willing to start over” and “Start leaving what you want to leave. Your future is waiting.”

18. More wisdom from Brave Girls Club,

Dear Sensitive Girl,

Your soul is whispering something to you. Slow down so you can hear it.

You know what do to…..your heart is smart, and it is telling you in a million different ways. You can trust it.

You know exactly what to do….you really do. Listen to those whispers….they are leading you toward all that is good and right for YOUR life.

You are so brave, you are so wonderful, you are so on track.

You are so loved.

xoxo

19. The story of Owen and Haatchi on Viral Nova.

20. An Awesome Book of Love, “Yael Staav’s poignant and emotional interpretation of Dallas Clayton’s celebrated storybook, An Awesome Book of Love, shows us that love is truly humanity’s greatest gift.”

21. Jump Off the Busy Train for a Simpler, More Passion-Filled Life on Tiny Buddha.

22. The Complete Guide to Not Giving a Fuck on Medium.

23. On Softening to Pain on Zen Psychiatry. Since I read this, I can’t stop asking myself this question, “How can I soften into this?”

24. Warning: Do not read this if you enjoy clinging to excuses that prevent you from making art, moving forward + doing wonderful things from Alexandra Franzen. No more excuses.

25. A story from Elizabeth Gilbert on Facebook that will make you think.

26. Rachel Cole’s 5 Essentials for a Passionate, Well-Fed Life on The Kitchn.

27. Laurie Wagner on breaking a love affair with the screens that fuel our lonely habits on Flourish. P.S. There’s still time to sign up for her ecourse, Telling True Stories.

28. Should spiritual teachers be paid? from Susan Piver. (Recognize that shrine? It’s on my writing desk.) According to the logic of the original email, it would suggest that doctors and teachers shouldn’t be paid either, that if you are fulfilling a need you shouldn’t be compensated. I don’t buy it.

Something Good

image by eric

image by eric

1. Telling True Stories with Laurie Wagner. One of the aspects of story telling that I value most is when a writer digs into the material of their real lives and shares from that true and beautiful place. If you’re wanting to strengthen that vibrant muscle of honesty in your own story telling, consider signing up for Telling True Stories, a 5-week online writing course which starts on March 3rd. I recommend this course and this woman with my whole heart.

2. Kayden + Rain, a little girl experiences rain for the first time.

3. A 21 Day Open Heart Immersion: Live in Love, another amazing offering from the brilliant and kind Susan Piver.

4. The Smoke and Mirrors Behind Wheat Belly and Grain Brain on Forks Over Knives.

5. Neil Gaiman reads Green Eggs and Ham.

6. Cool stuff from Viral Nova: Sometimes The Simplest Photos Are The Most Eye-Opening. These Ones Say So Much. and This Fairly Normal House Is For Sale In The UK. But It’s What’s Out Back That Has Everyone Talking. and I Couldn’t Believe What This Guy Was Making For His Unborn Child. But By The End… WOW.

7. I love Kid President.

8. 22 Supremely Perfect Photobombs.

9. Campers save dog lost in woods and save him a second time when his owners abandoned him on Dog Heirs.

10. In Just 2 Minutes, This Video Will Make You Feel Silly For Ever Having Doubted Yourself on Huffington Post.

11. A Funny Video That Makes You Never Want To Fall For This Natural Lie Again from Upworthy.

12. What Career Should You Actually Have? a quiz from BuzzFeed. (I got “writer”).

13. The (delicious) truth about getting older from Susannah Conway on her 40th birthday. She shares a series of posts by other women as well. Some of my favorites were top 10 reasons why being 40-something rocks and What 41 years have taught me and You are beautiful and the art of getting older, posing with snakes + playing with fire.

14. From Good Life Project, “We Asked 29 Change-Makers One Simple Question. Their Answers Would Transform the Way We Live Our Lives. Here’s What They Told Us…”

15. Wisdom from Pema Chödrön,

Listening to talks about the dharma, or the teachings of Buddha, or practicing meditation is nothing other than studying ourselves. Whether we’re eating or working or meditating or listening or talking, the reason that we’re here in this world at all is to study ourselves. In fact, it has been said that studying ourselves provides all the books we need.

Maybe the reason there are dharma talks and books is just to encourage us to understand this simple teaching: all the wisdom about how we cause ourselves to suffer and all the wisdom about how joyful and vast and uncomplicated our minds are—these two things, the understanding of what we might call neurosis and the wisdom of unconditioned, unbiased truth—can only be found in our own experience.

16. 10 Life Coach Tips For A Killer 2014, a list from Rachel Cole.

17. 25 Things You Need to Stop Wasting Time On from Marc and Angel Hack Life.

18. Ron Swanson’s 7 Best Statements About Life from Hello Giggles.

19. collaborations with nature on random weaving. So beautiful.

20. The Risks Worth Taking from Austin Kleon.

21. “To love another person is to see the face of God.” —Jean Valjean, Act II, Les Misérables, love scripts from Alexandra Franzen.

22. Are you hanging by a thread? from Danielle LaPorte. I need to hear this so badly this week (month, year…).

23. The Happiest Animal on Earth.

24. Hopeful news flash! We can’t beat ourselves up into being peaceful. So please stop. from Susan Piver.

25. your daily rock : let kindness rule and your daily rock : let your self be awed.

26. Wisdom from Elizabeth Gilbert on Facebook.

27. An Open Letter To Anyone Thinking About Trying Yoga on MindBodyGreen.

28. Wisdom from Dallas Clayton on Facebook.

image by dallas clayton

image by dallas clayton

Something Good

1. Love Is… (Holy Shit, I Have Cancer) on Huffington Post by Elana Miller. The post she wrote just before this one is worth a read too, Our World is Rule by Love.

2. Good stuff from Viral Nova: As If A 1,000 Year Old Tree Isn’t Awesome Enough, Wait Til You See What’s Inside It and If I Gave You 30 Guesses, You Still Wouldn’t Guess What’s Behind This Door. It’s That Awesome (if you want to see more about this one, check out this video) and Her Dad Found A Box In The Snow. Nothing Could Prepare Them For What Was In It.

3. on real beauty by Karen Walrond. I think I’ve shared this before, but it’s worth another look.

4. Among Friends: a new year’s prose from Jeff Oaks.

5. How to Live a Creative Life.

6. Wisdom from Matt Licata: A sadness pouring out of your overflowing heart and

Though you cannot
remember it now,
you have taken a vow
with the stars
as your witness,
to offer your heart
to this world.

You have agreed
to remain naked, raw,
and vulnerable forever,
to enter into
the heart of sadness
and the ocean of tenderness
if that is where love calls you.

Your only guide
is the unknown
and the only map
is found inside
the cells of your own heart.

7. Farewell 2013 from Dallas Clayton.

8. Neil Gaiman is blogging again.

9. Good stuff from Patti Digh: your daily rock : be someone’s angel, your daily rock : embrace what is, your daily rock : simple wisdom, and your daily rock : look within.

10. Wisdom from Susan Piver: The necessity of emotion and What I Wish For You.

11. Blessings, a new offering from Kristin Noelle.

12. The 7 emails that nobody wants to receive — and how to answer each one, with love from Alexandra Franzen.

13. Wisdom from David Whyte,

You must learn one thing.
The world was made to be free in.
Give up all other worlds except the one to which you belong.
Sometimes it takes darkness
and the sweet confinement of your aloneness
to learn that anything or anyone that does not bring you alive
is too small for you.

14. Wisdom from Anaïs Nin, “The role of a writer is not to say what we can all say, but what we are unable to say.”

15. This Video Is The Only Thing You Need To Watch To Understand That It’s Love That Makes A Family on Huffington Post.

16. 5 Things To Say ‘F**k It To’ In January on Huffington Post.

17. Tap Into Creativity by Letting Go on Scoutie Girl.

18. Wisdom from Guillaume Apollinaire,

Come to the edge. We can’t. We’re afraid.
Come to the edge. We can’t. We will fall!
Come to the edge. And they came.
And he pushed them. And they flew.

19. 21 Things That Inevitably Happen When You Work In An Office on BuzzFeed.

20. Stateless Mindset from Zen Habits.

21. It’s time to own it on Superhero Life.

22. “But what if I fail?” from Seth Godin.

23. An Honorable Last Wish For A Dying Marine on NPR.

24. Man Builds Fairy Tale Home for His Family – Total Cost £3,000, and it’s so dreamy.

25. It’s Enough Already With “Giving Zero Fucks” on A Life Less Bullshit.

26. Materialism: a system that eats us from the inside out on The Guardian, which says, “This is the dreadful mistake we are making: allowing ourselves to believe that having more money and more stuff enhances our wellbeing.”

27. 66 Amazing Examples Of Paper Art on demilked.

28. my word (with wings) from Sas Petherick.

29. Why 2014 Will Be The Year Of Mindful Living from Huffington Post. Guess I was ahead of the curve.

30. I Broke My Scale from Vivienne McMaster.

Something Good

1. Fears and Flashbacks from Sas Petherick.

2. your daily rock : do what you love and your daily rock : please don’t judge

3. Good stuff from MindBodyGreen: In Defense Of Highly Sensitive People, and 10 Questions To Ask Yourself Every Day, and If You Do Nothing Else To Be Healthy, At Least Do These 5 Things.

4. Good stuff from Elephant Journal: 8 Ways to Make Every Day Your Best Without Pretending You’re Happy or Letting Go, and 10 Ways to Be a Human Being, and Why God Made a Dog. {Video} (*sob*), and Top 10 Photos: Outdoorsy Tiny Cabin Porn, (if you like that sort of thing, make sure to go to the Cabin Porn website).

5. I am obsessed with learning to make Kitchari: How To Cook Kitchari, and How to make Kitchari using the Banyan Kitchari Kit, and My Favorite Kitchari Recipe.

6. Prints with poetry from Maya Stein. I’m hoping she makes a book of these someday.

7. Opening the Creative Channel from Superhero Life, in which Andrea Scher talks about the retreat I was lucky enough to attend.

8. Sweet dog asks cat for his bed back on Dog Heirs and in related news, this Cats Stealing Dog Beds Compilation.

9. 10 Life Lessons You Should UnlearnMartha Beck on Huffington Post.

10. My Art Was Stolen for Profit (and How You Can Help) from Lisa Congdon. And a whole bunch of other articles related to this situation: a Flickr page of other indie ripoffs, and Is Giant Folk Art Company Cody Foster Stealing From Small Artists?, and We Love Authenticity, and How A Company Gets Away With Stealing Independent Designers’ Work, and Drawing the Line on Design Theft.

11. Wisdom from Pema Chödrön,

Not acting on our habitual patterns is only the first step toward not harming others or ourselves. The transformative process begins at a deeper level when we contact the rawness we’re left with whenever we refrain. As a way of working with our aggressive tendencies, Dzigar Kongtrül teaches the nonviolent practice of simmering. He says that rather than “boil in our aggression like a piece of meat cooking in a soup,” we simmer in it. We allow ourselves to wait, to sit patiently with the urge to act or speak in our usual ways and feel the full force of that urge without turning away or giving in. Neither repressing nor rejecting, we stay in the middle between the two extremes, in the middle between yes and no, right and wrong, true and false. This is the journey of developing a kindhearted and courageous tolerance for our pain.

12. Good stuff from Marc and Angel Hack Life: 10 Truths You Will Learn Before You Find Happiness, and 10 Risks Happy People Take Every Day.

13. “I don’t get it” from Seth Godin.

14. The 2013 Holiday Gift Guide – Part One from Rachel Cole, who has very good taste.

15. You are not in control from Christina Rosalie, in which she says,

What is yours is the way you meet the turbulence as it arrives: with grace or terror, with gratitude or anger, with openness or clenched fists, with focus or distraction. Your life will find you, no matter what you plan. Be here then. Be of this wild, brilliant new day. Respond as truly as you can, and know this life is made both of your breath, and of the wind you breathe.

16. Oprah Tells An Atheist She Believes In God. The Atheist Responds Like A Christian. Or Any Human on Upworthy. Confession: I am kind of annoyed with Oprah right now, how she doesn’t let people say what they have to say, how she seems to sometimes use them simply to say what she’s already decided to say. Case in point, Dani Shapiro on Super Soul Sunday yesterday. Oprah would not let her finish, not let her speak, kept interrupting her. It was so hard to watch.

17. Neil Gaiman: Why our future depends on libraries, reading and daydreaming on The Guardian.

18. Why Your Brain Needs More Downtime on Scientific American.

19. Watch A Student Totally Nail Something About Women That I’ve Been Trying To Articulate For 37 Years on Upworthy. Amazing.

20. Seven Unusual Tips to Stir Your Creative Juices from Judy Clement Wall.

21. Why Oreos Are As Addictive As Cocaine To Your Brain on Forbes.

22. Man overhears sad tale in diner, secretly pays for meal, because people are good.

23. 30 Of The Happiest Facts Ever from Bored Panda.

24. Piktochart looks really fun. I first saw an example on Create as Folk, in this post, (which is also something good): Get the Bleep off Craigslist.

25. 4 Reasons I Don’t Believe in the Law of Attraction on Always Well Within.

26. 7 Things To Look At When You Feel Bad About Your Body on Huffington Post.

27. Why I’m Infatuated With October on Scoutie Girl.

28. Wisdom from Franz Kafka,

You can hold yourself back from the sufferings of the world, that is something you are free to do and it accords with your nature, but perhaps this very holding back is the one suffering you could avoid.

29. Scientists Discover One Of The Greatest Contributing Factors To Happiness — You’ll Thank Me Later a Soul Pancake video on Upworthy.

30. Charlie the Dog Is the World’s Worst Recycler on Jezebel. An empty plastic water bottle really is one of the best puppy toys ever. Reminds me of Sam when he was a puppy, and I’d hide a ball under a tupperware bowl and he’d try to get it out. (P.S. Dexter was the best big brother).

31. 7 Life-Changing Benefits of a Surprisingly Simple Meditation Technique on Tiny Buddha.

32. From Susannah Conway’s Something for the Weekend list, A freebie 2014 calendar template for your photos (such a cool idea!), and What People Really Look Like from Portland Home Massage, in which masseuse Dave says,

Everybody on a massage table is beautiful. There are really no exceptions to this rule. At that first long sigh, at that first thought that “I can stop hanging on now, I’m safe” – a luminosity, a glow, begins. Within a few minutes the whole body is radiant with it. It suffuses the room: it suffuses the massage therapist too. People talk about massage therapists being caretakers, and I suppose we are: we like to look after people, and we’re easily moved to tenderness. But to let you in on a secret: I’m in it for the glow.

I’ll tell you what people look like, really: they look like flames. Or like the stars, on a clear night in the wilderness.

33. My Most Meaningful Decision on Design Sponge.

34. One Question (plus a few more) from Julia on Painted Path.

35. More Bat Dad, who was also interviewed on TODAY.

36. From Positively Present Picks, free desktop downloads from Design Love Fest.

37. Clever cat helps dog escape from kitchen (VIDEO) from Dog Heirs.

38. whatthefuckshouldibeforhalloween.com

39. Wisdom from Anne Lamott on Facebook.

40. Wisdom from Geneen Roth on Facebook,

When you stop warring with yourself, when you end the shaming and judging and blaming, when you stop the pushing and pulling and feeding the desire to be someone else with a different life, the war with food ends as well. Maybe not all at once, but soon. It couldn’t be any other way.

41. Amazing Secret Dungeon discovered under my new apartment…


42. Childish Gambino Explains Instagram Notes, in which he says,

“If I’m depressed, everybody’s depressed, I don’t think those feelings are that different from what everybody’s feeling. Most people just don’t tell everybody. I was just tired of telling people I was tired. It felt like every day someone would ask, ‘What’s wrong. Are you OK?’ “And I would say, ‘I’m tired, I’m tired.’ I didn’t want to do that anymore. I guess sometimes not telling the truth is just as bad as telling a lie.”

43. From Brain Pickings: Humans of New York: A Vibrant Photographic Census of Diversity and Dignity and Fail Safe: Debbie Millman’s Advice on Courage and the Creative Life.

44. The photographer behind ‘Humans of New York’ on CNN.

45. Read this when you’re feeling unwanted + rejected. (You’re not. This will help.) from Alexandra Franzen.

46. How Not to Be Alone on The New York Times.

P.S. This is my 100th Something Good list!

Something Good (Part Two)

oaklandbayviewAs promised, here’s Part Two of the list.

1. What Work Do Millenials Want to Do? by Lodro Rinzler on Huffington Post.

2. 8 Truths to Getting Unstuck and Reclaiming Your Freedom from Deva Coaching.

3. Looking to start a yoga practice, need a teacher but don’t want to leave the house? Yogaglo might be worth checking out.

4. Taped Rai – Shadow of The Sun, such a beautiful song.

5. I’ve Gained Weight. Now What Am I Gonna Do? from Drop It and Eat.

6. How To Find Your Calling on MindBodyGreen.

7. The Best Examples of Street Art from 2012. I may have shared this before, but it’s cool enough to do it again.

8. 10 Inspiring Bookshops around the World. This is what’s known in my tribe as book porn.

9. Wisdom from Rumi, “I have been a seeker and still am, but I stopped asking books and the stars. I started listening to the teaching of my soul.”

10. Kid Recites Bible – Then Busts Out George Strait During Pre-School Graduation. Right on, little dude.

harbor11. Good stuff from Be More with Less: I Want to Punch Perfection in the Face and 6 Blogs to Inspire Simplicity and Minimalism.

12. Less Clicking, More Making from Marc Johns.

13. Feeling drrrrrained by emails, blogs, newsletters — the whole Internet? Take back your power. from Alexandra Franzen.

14. The Shero’s School for Revolutionaries with Jen Louden. Lots of wisdom from lots of good people, for free.

15. Important questions from Ram Dass,

Ask yourself: Where am I?
Answer: Here.

Ask yourself: What time is it?
Answer: Now.

Say it until you can hear it.

16. I Am A Yogi on MindBodyGreen.

portofsanfran17. Good stuff from Marc and Angel Hack Life: 7 Miserable Choices You Make Too Often and 9 Things You Do NOT Need to Be Happy.

18. ten-to-go: in the kitchen, on SF Girl by Bay. Beautiful and yummy kitchen items.

19. Truthbomb from Danielle LaPorte, “You have what you need.”

20. From Brave Girls Club,

You can do amazing things with the simplest things. You can have so little and be so happy. You can take small amounts of time and perform life-changing acts…Your heart knows when it’s time, and you will have the strength to do it. And best of all, you will see enormous changes happen in your life when you let the unimportant things go and embrace the things that quietly sustain you and bring you joy…It may not look like the most glamorous life, but it is one filled with joy, peace, and harmony; one where laughter is a welcome and frequent companion; one where worries are few, where long meaningful conversations are many; one that is waiting for you when you are ready to take the steps to get there…Simplify today, one little thing at a time. You can do it. You are LOVED.

oaklandbayview0221. A poem from Rainer Maria Rilke, Go to the Limits of Your Longing,

God speaks to each of us as he makes us,
then walks with us silently out of the night.

These are the words we dimly hear:

You, sent out beyond your recall,
go to the limits of your longing.
Embody me.

Flare up like a flame
and make big shadows I can move in.

Let everything happen to you: beauty and terror.
Just keep going. No feeling is final.
Don’t let yourself lose me.

Nearby is the country they call life.
You will know it by its seriousness.

Give me your hand.

sanfranbridge0222. 10 Things You Should Do Every Day, on Elephant Journal. Again, I’ve shared this before but it’s important enough to take another look.

23. The Art of Decluttering on MindBodyGreen.

24. Me, Myself, & I from Rachel Cole.

25. Note from the Universe,

Nobody, Jill, is who they are based upon one decision, one day, one path, one chance, one relationship, or one anything else. Every day is brand new and opportunity never stops knocking.

26. Perspective from Dawn Dalili.

27. Can I Feel Your Soul Through Your Work? from Jonathan Fields. Word.

28. Everyday Icons: The Writer, an interview with Alexandra Franzen, and a follow-up blog post, Yet another (astonishingly simple) way to write your own bio.

berkeleymural29. Your Story Matters, in which Jen Louden references the workshop we did together this weekend, and makes an incredibly important point — maybe the most important point of all.

30. 8 Creativity Lessons from a Pixar Animator on Zen Habits.

31. Neil Gaiman’s Advice to Aspiring Writers on Brain Pickings.

32. A Chat with Inspired and Unstoppable Tama Kieves on The Mojo Lab.

33. the art of thinking highly of yourself by Justine Musk.

berkeleymural0234. Woman Secretly Filmed Dancing at Bus Stop Lands Prestigious Theater Gig on Gawker. This video makes me all kinds of happy. The fact that it has a happy ending is a bonus.

35. I am buying Sam an elephant, and here’s why: No Friendship Can Compare To This One Between A Dog And An Elephant on Buzzfeed and Elephant and dog best friends love playing in the water together (VIDEO).

36. Tears, Tails, Dickey and Duane from Susan Piver. Just one more reason I love her.

37. San Francisco Adventures! from Vivienne McMaster.

Something Good

1. Fort Collins, Colo., might be the happiest place on Earth on LA Times. I love where I live.

2. How To Boost Creativity With A Morning Routine from Fran Sorin.

3. Everyone saw the biracial Cheerios commercial, but kids saw it differently. This is a great video. The little girl with freckles is my favorite.

4. Dave Matthews breaks down on bicycle, gets a ride to his concert from fan. Reading this made me cry, thinking about how magic happens, how this person was just being a decent human, offering to help someone who needed it, and got such a great surprise reward for it.

5. how trusting my body makes my dreams come true, a great reminder from Sas Petherick.

parkinggaragebird

6. How I decide what to charge for {everything} I create from Alexandra Franzen.

7. Elizabeth Gilbert’s posts on Facebook. It’s like she’s writing a mini blog there, and her posts are so good that I can’t stop sharing them. Here’s one on Bringing Up The Light, which sent me to the paint department to look for my color. Does Running Away Work? was another really good post.

8. Do Whatever Makes You Happy, from Christian Novelli.

9. Also from Christian Novelli, 46 Reasons To Exist. What 46 things are on your list?

10. The Space Between and Learning How To Stop The Glorification Of Busy on Scoutie Girl.

11. Chris Rock Gives The Best 60-Second Piece Of Advice To Liberals, Conservatives, And Human Beings on Upworthy.

12. Most Celebrities Promote Products They Like. Ellen DeGeneres Is Not Most Celebrities. and BOOM, ROASTED: Here’s Why You Don’t Ask A Feminist To Hawk Your Sexist Product on Upworthy.

13. Take The Human Test, a brilliant set of videos from ZeFrank, who has a habit of making brilliant videos.

14. Golden Retriever Champ: Probably the Happiest Dog In The World and Meet Norm, Pug With the Best Selfies on the Internet on Bored Panda.

15. Terms of Endearment from Rachel Cole.

16. Louis CK – Animated: If God Came Back

17. Rest in Peace, Tiger.

18. Preorder the Humans of New York book. One of my very favorite projects.

19. My son and dog’s 2 1/2 year friendship on Reddit. The last picture in the set is so sweet.

20. 21 Cozy Makeshift Reading Nooks on BuzzFeed DIY. We all need one of these, a good book and a dog or two.

21. How To Be Happy: Simple steps to lead a simple and content life. Yes, please.

parkinggaragevine22. Coolest Dad Ever on Elephant Journal, a Latino Depeche Mode cover band that consists of one dad and his two kids, one girl and one boy. Cool.

23. Dad Captures His Son’s First Year, One Second Per Day, and It’s Lovely, another cool dad.

24. My Girlfriend Weighs More Than Me. So What?

25. 21 Things to Stop Saying Unless You Hate Fat People on Live Love Grow.

26. Confessions of a life coach : slogging through the muck from Amy Kessel.

27. from running to runner from Jessica Swift.

parkinggarageface28. We Shake With Joy, a short poem by Mary Oliver.

We shake with joy, we shake with grief.
What a time they have, these two
housed as they are in the same body.

29. 14 Things You Didn’t Know About Neil Gaiman on BuzzFeed.

30. 5 Powerful Resources for Decluttering Your Home and Living More Simply and How to Release the Grip on Your Comfort Zone on Be More with Less.

31. Wisdom from Pema Chödrön,

The next time you lose heart and you can’t bear to experience what you’re feeling, you might recall this instruction: change the way you see it and lean in. Instead of blaming our discomfort on outer circumstances or on our own weakness, we can choose to stay present and awake to our experience, not rejecting it, not grasping it, not buying the stories that we relentlessly tell ourselves. This is priceless advice that addresses the true cause of suffering—yours, mine, and that of all living beings.

32. Home Bound Blues, Raf Horemans travel blog which includes the most beautiful photography.

parkinggaragehands33. Evidence for the suggestion that racism isn’t natural, it is taught: The 40-Year-Old Photo That Gives Us A Reason To Smile and this more modern picture that shows the same from Reddit.

34. Wisdom from Tama J. Kieves,

You may think that making the “right” decision guarantees you success. But, really, knowing that you can’t fail is what guarantees success. You can’t fail because the Love that guides you is infallible and can always course correct.

35. Latest Parenting Trend: The CTFD Method.

36. Allison Mae Photography does it again. Oh Allison. Oh Idgie.

Photo of Idgie, a.k.a. Honey Badger, by Allison Mae Photography

I couldn’t bear to have Allison take pictures of Dexter, could never bring myself to go through with it, make that call, just knew looking at images this beautiful when the boy was gone would have hurt too much, would have felt too bad to have two of my dogs captured this way when Obi was already gone and would never have the chance. But now that there’s just Sam, and there will be another boy one day soon-ish, I think a session is in order.

37. 10 Epic Treehouses Cooler Than Your Apartment on Mashable.

38. 40 Days of Dating.

39. Just One Paragraph, from Christina Rosalie. This is a great idea, but I can’t take one more thing on right now. Check her comments section for other bloggers taking part in posting just one paragraph each day for 30 days. I am loving reading Christina’s posts, like this first one for example, Making Saturday Slow on Purpose {Just one Paragraph: 1/30}.

40. Things I want to remember from Susannah Conway. Oh my, the poop moment — who knew such a thing could be so sweet.

parkinggaragemural41. How you can ask for — and receive — cosmic guidance from Danielle LaPorte.

42. Something else Elizabeth Gilbert posted on Facebook,

Several years ago, I went to see an ophthalmologist on account of some recurring trouble with eye strain and general blurriness. During the exam, the doctor asked me, “Do you spend much time reading or writing?” I replied, “Only when I’m awake…”

Me too. Me too.

43. Walking Across America: Advice for a Young Man.

44. From Rowdy Kittens’ Happy Links list, Life is Not Perfect. Fortunately.

45. If I lived alone, this might be what my place would look like: anahata katkin: papaya! on SF Girl by Bay.

parkinga46. your daily rock : no expectations

47. How To Draw Mandalas (And Why You Want To) from Andrea Schroeder.

48. Shared by Susannah on her Something for the Weekend List: So, How Was Your Day? and So We’ll Always Remember.

49. This story, of how good people can be, and how important it is for us to share the good stuff, because apparently this wasn’t reported on the news.

The ashes of Sean Misner, one of the 19 firefighters who died last week in Arizona, were being transported by his wife back to their hometown on Tuesday. She was in his truck and is pregnant with their unborn child. On every overpass for nearly 500 miles there was a tribute similar to this. Pretty damn remarkable and worthy of more media coverage than most of the other stuff that has been on tv lately. Wanted to share because our media has seemed to overlook it.

firetruck50. love this: ellie’s current favorites from Liz Lamoreux. I love the sweet way that Ellie sees the world.

51. Dog Finds A Tiny Kitten, Risks Everything To Save Her on BuzzFeed. Hopefully these two get adopted together.

52. Calvin and Hobbes Documentary Trailer Gives Us All Kinds of Feels on The Mary Sue.

53. If I were to take another online class right now, it would have to be Be Your Own Beloved, “a 28 day photo adventure designed to cultivate self-compassion through the practice of taking self-portraits” with Vivienne McMaster. The next session starts on August 1st.

54. This wisdom from Audre Lorde, “When I dare to be powerful, to use my strength in the service of my vision, then it becomes less and less important whether I am afraid.”

Day of Rest

We just got back from spending three nights at a cabin up at Crystal Lakes. After losing Dexter, we needed to get away to the green and the quiet, spend some time just the three of us, hit the reset button.

The cabin is called Lofty Lookout, and it has a gate at the end of a long driveway lush with aspens and wildflowers that hides the house from the main road (when Eric saw that, he said “I approve”), and is four floors high (basement, main floor, sleeping loft, and another sleeping loft). It was way too big for the three of us, but we rented it because of the location and the decks.

The view was amazing, there were hummingbirds at the feeder all day, and we could walk out the front door and land directly on a five mile hiking trail that wound through pine trees, aspen groves, and meadows. At the sight of one spot along the trail, filled with aspens and wildflowers, Eric said “you almost expect a unicorn to come walking out of there.”

We hiked every morning, took naps every afternoon. I watched some HGTV and one day read an entire book, Neil Gaiman’s latest, The Ocean at the End of the Lane. It was a wonderful book, but I’m biased because I love everything he writes — graphic novels, adult fiction, children’s books, essays, blog posts. One of my favorite parts of the book was this,

I have dreamed of that song, of the strange words to that simple rhyme-song, and on several occasions I have understood what she was saying, in my dreams. In those dreams I spoke the language too, the first language, and I had dominion over the nature of all that was real. In my dream, it was the tongue of what is, and anything spoken in it becomes real, because nothing said in that language can be a lie. It is the most basic building brick of everything. In my dreams I have used that language to heal the sick and to fly; once I dreamed I kept a perfect little bed-and-breakfast by the seaside, and to everyone who came to stay with me I would say, in that tongue, “Be whole,” and they would become whole, not be broken people, not any longer, because I had spoken the language of shaping.

The land, the trails and the trees and the sky here in Colorado are magical. The time spent there was medicine, and yet I wasn’t without suffering, wasn’t beyond generating my own suffering. As a part guard, part herd breed, Sam takes a while to settle in anywhere new, is nervous and worried. I felt bad at first for forcing him along, even though I know that doing new things is good for him, that challenging him a little helps him to become a more confident dog. He panted and whined that first night, checked on every new noise and sound. Then on the second day, just as he was calming down, he got a spider bite on his belly and I worried about that.

The first night, I slept terrible, between Sam’s whining every time we moved and us choosing apparently the most uncomfortable bed in the whole cabin. Then there was the night we were boiling water to cook some corn on the cob and something that had been spilled on the burner drip pan caught on fire. And that night when we moved to a different, more comfortable bed, I had to move the carbon monoxide detector (the little green light would have kept me awake), and unplugging it set it off and I couldn’t figure out right away how to stop it.

Then on our hike the final morning there, our car alarm got triggered while it was parked at the trailhead, and malfunctioned so that it keep going off, stopping and starting for who knows how long, and someone left a nasty note on our car window (saying things like “rude” and “extremely annoying”), as if anyone would do such a thing on purpose. So even as I tried to relax, to heal, I continued to generate my own suffering. I can’t escape myself, no matter where I go, no matter how far I hike.

On our last afternoon, we saw a hummingbird sitting on its nest. When they are making their nest, they gather up anything soft they can find and they bind it all together with spiderwebs. They do this so that the nest will stretch as the babies get bigger. I was comforted seeing this, because earlier in the day, a war had begun around the hummingbird feeder on the cabin’s main deck. We’d been enjoying it so much, how we could sit right next to it but they would come feed anyway, letting us watch. But at some point, things turned sour and they began fighting over it, guarding the feeder by chasing and attacking each other, even though there was so much food available there was no way they could ever eat it all. We are like that too, I thought as I watched them, so convinced that there’s not enough, that the only way to get what we want, what we need is to fight for it.

Every time I feel anxious or sad, irritated or uncomfortable, I try to remember what Pema Chödrön teaches about working with groundlessness,

It’s not impermanence per se, or even knowing we’re going to die, that is the cause of our suffering, the Buddha taught. Rather, it’s our resistance to the fundamental uncertainty of our situation. Our discomfort arises from all of our efforts to put ground under our feet, to realize our dream of constant okayness. When we resist change, it’s called suffering. But when we can completely let go and not struggle against it, when we can embrace the groundlessness of our situation and relax into its dynamic quality, that’s called enlightenment, or awakening to our true nature, to our fundamental goodness. Another word for that is freedom—freedom from struggling against the fundamental ambiguity of being human.

We cause so much unnecessary suffering for ourselves and each other, can be so confused, allow ourselves to get caught up in the anxiety of “not enough.” I am trying to be gentle, to forgive myself for that. Every moment I try and keep my heart open, to soften and surrender to what is, to notice the magic happening around me, to generate compassion and ease suffering. Some moments I am more successful than others, but I keep showing up, keep trying.