Posted in Andrew Kaleb, Elizabeth Lawrence;, J4R Productions, Tom Robbins

Celebrating ” What’s your Childhood Memories?”- Celebrating the artist behind the creation- Diana John!

What is your favourite childhood memory? Worth thinking about isn’t it? Here are two quotes I found helpful.

“There is a garden in every childhood, an enchanted place where colors are brighter, the air softer, and the morning more fragrant than ever again.” ~Elizabeth Lawrence

It is never too late to have a happy childhood. ~Tom Robbins

I look the time to find out the story about the artist behind the creation. She is the artist behind the creation, What’s your Childhood Memories and though she calls herself “Sapodilla Brown” she is none other than Diana John.

To find out about her blog visit this link: http://screamingmemories.blogspot.com/

Having been intrigued by the idea of her blog, “Childhood Memories” I decided to speak to her and get an idea of the artist being the creation and about the project itself. Here is what I found out:

Diana John, aka “Sapodilla Brown” is “a half glass full kinda girl” who always tries to live life on the positive side as I’m not an outgoing, open-minded individual. It is not always about putting self first but the needs of others. In life it’s the little things that piss me off like saying you will fail before ever trying to succeed,” she says. I beg to differ as I find her to be open-minded.

I asked, “What inspired you to choose the idea “What’s your Childhood Memories” as your project idea?”

Here is what she said: “My inspiration came from not having any idea what to write. I happened to be searching for a funeral program of my great aunt for a family member and cam across the stuff I still had from my childhood. Then it came to me- why not write about Childhood Memories and I did. The other one or two ideas I got I didn’t see myself much or anything at all.”

I asked, “From day 1 how did you see growth of your project?”

Her response: “The ideas and creativity were there but it was just to get it out. Apart from the fact that I am a bit shy when it comes to approaching people I must admit I fall short when it comes to technology, (apps and gadgets). I have begun to pick up though the project is rounding up.”

“What was been your favourite part of the project?”

This is it: “My favourite part was discovering the things you can do as I had to discover it on my own, entering a whole new realm of technology with the wider world .I never saw myself as a blogger probably only in my head but not in real life. It was a nice challenge but hopefully in the near future, I pick it up again.”

“What is the most positive thing coming out of your project?”

Diana said, “It helped me to face my  fears of being heard but at the same time I can still stay hidden. It showed me insight that I may not be able to reach everyone but even some or a little as it gives a voice to be heard and to believe in myself a lot more rather than a little. Apart from the above mentioned it allowed me to open up because these are things I rarely share far more to blog about it. Thanks!”

My final question was, “Is there anything else you would like to share about your project?”

Her response: “Yes, for novices like me don’t be afraid to try despite all the obstacles that may come your way. Also try to keep a clear schedule for this project once it is not a part of your daily live or routine.”

My advice:

  1.  Don’t give up. With practice, over time things get easier.
  2.  keep at the blog and other social media apps after this. It’s one of the best gifts you can give yourself.

This picture illustrates my favourite childhood memory. I got it from a Google search (http://www.tonybrewer.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/11/family-meals-free-clip-art.jpg)

This represents my favourite childhood memory- The entire family sitting down for dinner or lunch. We would be at school during the week and dad left early for work and most times he got home late. We tried to have one meal together for the week. It was initiated by my dad and family meal time is something we enjoyed.
This represents my favourite childhood memory- The entire family sitting down for dinner or lunch. We would be at school during the week and dad left early for work and most times he got home late. We tried to have one meal together for the week. It was initiated by my dad and family meal time is something we enjoyed. Really love me family and those times!

Again I ask, what’s your favourite childhood memory?

As I close, I say thank you to Elizabeth Lawrence and to Tom Robbins. Special thanks also to Andrew Kaleb and YouTube for the first video I shared. Thank you J4R Production for the second video. Thank you electronicworldnz and YouTube for the next video. Here’s a tutorial on how to create your own Childhood memory with the piano:

Enjoy!

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Celebrating Existence: Looking within- What does celebrating existence mean to you?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=15R6SNZ-K1g

Hi all,

My opening song is from Hillsong Kids and was taken from YouTube.  What does Celebrating Existence mean to you? I asked this question and got the following responses. Here is what Celebrating Existence means to Carlotta Alexander!

As Carlotta Alexander, BA Mass Communications student and Office Assistant | Customer Service-South SAGICOR LIFE INC.21-25 Independence Avenue | San Fernando says and shares with us:

 “For me just the mere idea that I have life is a celebration.  Earlier this year I went to work as usual not considering that my eye was blurry and  I was always thirsty. I was too busy to even stop and check myself with a doctor because I so wanted to keep my grades up, meet deadlines of both work and school that I hadn’t realized how sick I really was.

It was only when my daughter fainted in San Fernando and I rushed to the hospital to see what had  happened to her that my fellow classmates who worked at the hospital looked at me and begged me to get a card and see the doctor also.  I, just wanting to stop their nagging humoured them and look their advice but little did I know that the joke was on me and a detrimental  one I must say, because my blood sugar readings were off the charts and my blood pressure well that was another story. All I knew is that they were sticking me needles and putting tubes in me with intern doctors disappearing and head doctors appearing. It took me eight days in the hospital for them to bring down all my vitals and sugar levels and even when I was discharged it was still high. I could have died and I am very fortunate to be alive. I can’t take a day of my life for granted.

Now life is a celebration because I have a greater appreciation of everything and everyone. Things that would have angered or even fret me, I am now more willing to let it go or pass. Life is truly fragile… we must treat it with care. I treat it with reverence now. I find myself looking at my daughter more carefully, now  I am cherishing her smile, the way she talks, walks and laughs. I listen more to others and what they have to say. We rush about life as we own it. I have news for you.. we don’t. live, love, learn and most all share while celebrating.

As my close friend Estervia Chaddie,a Secondary School teacher assigned to Cedros Secondary School, Bonasse Village Cedros says:

“Celebrating existence for me means to live fully and the best that I can with those who give me purpose and meaning…my family and few close friends. I don’t just simply exist…I live the life that I love.

I celebrate my existence by trying to fulfil my purpose…still figuring out that purpose as I go along but the journey to find that out is an amazing one!”

Enjoy listening to this Natalie Taylor selection from YouTube:

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Celebrating Spirituality: Celebrating His Holiness Pujya Sri Swamiji Ganapathy Sachidananda of Mysore India

Jai Guru Datta! Sri Guru Datta!

His titles are many (Guru, Healer, Master, Singer, Philosopher, Appaji, Swamiji, Divinity, Avatar,Teacher, Leader, Friend, Guide, Writer, Philosopher, Puyja Swami,  and the list goes on).  His impact is beyond great as thousands share testimonies of His role in their lives and His role is worldwide across thousands of miles and spans land and sea. One thing devotees have in common is their love for His Holiness Pujya Sri Swamiji Ganapathy Sachidananda  of Mysore Ashram India. Trinidad devotees have been blessed to be in the Divine Presence of His Holiness, Pujya Sri Swamiji Ganapathy Sachidananda  of Mysore Ashram India. Hailed by President of Sri Dattatreya Yoga Centre, Trinidad, Mr Ramesh Persad Maharaj at the Carapichaima Ashram last night as the “Leader of Leaders, Master of Masters and Guru of Gurus,” Pujya Sri Swamiji Ganapathy Sachidananda has and continues to play a pivotal role in Trinidad’s history as Trinidad is now home to Sri Dattatreya Yoga Centre in  Carapichaima, Aripo Datta Ganga in Aripo, Datta Shiva Ram Temple in Hindustan, Princes Town and most recently, Sri Sachidananda Yoga Ashram  in Rochard Road, Penal.

Puya Swamiji...Appaji His Holiness Sri Sri Sri Ganapati Sachidananda of Mysore, India.
Puya Swamiji…Appaji His Holiness Sri Sri Sri Ganapathy Sachidananda of Mysore, India.
Appaji's arrival at DYC Carapichaima
Appaji’s arrival at DYC Carapichaima
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Beautifully decorated walkway-DYC Carapichaima
DYC Carapichaima pics at night
DYC Carapichaima pics at night
DYC Carapichaima night shot!
DYC Carapichaima night shot!
Sri Karya Siddhi Hanuman
Sri Karya Siddhi Hanuman

On Friday November 14, 2014 Pujya Swamiji arrived in Trinidad and greeted devotees at the Dattatreya Yoga Centre after offering Pranams to the 85 ft Sri Karya Siddhi Anjaneya Murti ,Carapichaima.  On the morning of Saturday November 15, 2014, Pujya Swamiji left the feet of the Sri Karya Siddhi Anjaneya Murti ,Carapichaima , en route to Sri Sachchidananda Yoga Ashrama, Penal.

DYC Carapichaima and Sri Karya Siddi Hanuman!
DYC Carapichaima and Sri Karya Siddi Hanuman!

Other pictures that show the beauty of Sri Dattatreya Yoga Centre, Carapichaima:

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The entrance!
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A part of the beautiful site that greets devotees!
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The ceiling!
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The lotus pond!
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The elephant that greets devotees!

            

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The peepal tree!

At the Sri Sachidananda Yoga Ashrama in Penal His Holiness spent 4 days and on the 2nd of these four (4) days, performed the consecration of the six (6) temples on the grounds of the Sri Sachchidananda Yoga Ashrama , Penal.

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Sri Sachchidananda Yoga Ashrama , Penal

Beautifully decorated walkway!

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Devotees left their homes on these days and braved inclement weather to be a part of this historic event to offer their prayers and to be in the presence of Pujya His Holiness, Sri Ganapathy Sachidananda Swamiji of Mysore Ashram in India.

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Sri Swamiji and Pundit Shiv Kumar!
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Homa!

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Lord  Dattatreya!
Lord Dattatreya!
Durga Maa!
Durga Maa!
Lord Shiva!
Lord Shiva!
Sri Rajarajeshwari Maa!
Sri Rajarajeshwari Maa!
Lord Ganapati!
Lord Ganapati!
Sri Raam Parivaar!
Sri Raam Parivaar!

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Pujya Sri Swamiji Ganapathy Sachidananda visited the Princes Town Ashram on Wednesday morning and returned to the Sri Dattatreya Yoga Centre in Carapichaima on Wednesday evening. Apart from showering His blessings on devotees, Sri Swamiji conducted puja, sang bhajans and this morning (24 November 2014) His Holiness conducted Bhumi Puja for the construction of the Raam Parivaar and Satnarayan Swami Temples to be built.

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Sri Swamiji after Bhumi Puja-( 24- November 2014)

Sri Swamiji left DYC Carapichaima this evening (November 24, 2014) to return to His home in Mysore.

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Sri Swamiji as He departs the Ashram in the company of devotees!
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Sri Swamiji as He departs the Ashram
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My husband Shiva- preparations underway for Sri Swamiji’s departure!
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The coconut is offered!

https://www.facebook.com/sdyctt- This is the Facebook page for Sri Dattatreya Yoga Centre, Carapichaima

https://www.facebook.com/ssya.penal-This is the Facebook page for Sri Sachidananda Yoga Ashrama in Penal

You can view videos of Swamiji’s Trinidad journey here: http://new.livestream.com/YogaSangeeta3/events/3587476

http://puttugam.org/ for Celestial Messages and Musical Message Sayings by Sri Swamiji Ganapathy Sachidananda from ancient texts

http://www.sgsragasagara.org/ for Meditation Music and Healing

http://dattapeetham.com/ (Avadoota Datta Peetham – Home Guru Parampara)

One devotee recounted his experiences here: http://l.facebook.com/l.php?u=http%3A%2F%2Fputtugam.com%2F%3Fp%3D14692&h=hAQEqr7Aw&s=1

Sri Swamiji is very passionate about helping birds, hence the Shuka Vana SGS Birds. His Holiness shared these videos with devotees at the Sri Sachidananda Ashram in Penal.

SGS Birds iOS App: SGS Birds

SGS Birds Android App: SGS Birds

LIVESTREAM Channel: https://new.livestream.com/sgsbirds

Website: http://sgsbirds.com/

Facebook Profile: https://www.facebook.com/sgs.parrots

Facebook Page:  https://www.facebook.com/sgsbirds

Vimeo Videos: https://vimeo.com/sgsbirds

YouTube Videos: https://www.youtube.com/sgsbirds

Twitter: https://twitter.com/sgsbirds

Google+: https://plus.google.com/+sgsbirds

 Shuka Vana Aviary is located at:

Avadhoota Datta Peetham

Sri Ganapathy Sachchidananda Ashrama

Datta Nagar, Mysore – 570025. India.

Appaji, we love you and we wish You a very safe journey home. My husband, Shiva Jeremiah and I were very humbled to be in Your Divine Presence and to receive Your Darshan. Appaji, these words we are sure echo the words of several others. Appaji we love You and are happy to be in Your service.

To conclude this post, I share this video from Hanuman Hoffman whom I was privileged to meet, as I thoroughly enjoy the his manner of spreading and sharing Sri Swamiji’s messages, bhajans and teachings. Appaji we love You and to all our Dattatreya family we love you! -Shiva and Rachael! Jai Guru Datta!

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Celebrating Music- What is the Beat of the Drum? Who is Krystian Garner?

THE BEAT OF THE DRUM | CELEBRATING MUSIC

Let the Celebrations continue! In this post I celebrate “The Beat of the Drum” and the artist who created it- Mr Krystian Garner.

In case you have never heard of him I am sure there is a lot to pique your interest and you would be happy you decided to read on!

What is The Beat of the Drum about? Have a look at this:

So, who is Krystian Garner? Krystian Garner is a musician and drummer.  He has been playing drums since the age of 3 but officially began playing at 5 years old. He likes football, NFL, drums (of course) and helping people to grow just as he does. Added to this he dislikes anything that degrades or discriminates against anyone or anything.

Why did he choose “The Beat of the Drum” as his project idea? Here is what he says: Being that I have been around music all of my life and I want to develop my skills, I saw this as an opportunity to not only reach further by interviewing other people but sharing what I’ve learnt with others.

Has he seen growth of his project?  His response: Yes, I have seen growth in my project. It started off as a concept by asking individuals for assistance to add content to my project. Now it has reached a place where musicians/drummers are interested in working with me to do video shoots and share about their experiences. Awesome!

As The Beat of the Drum grows so too does Krystian!

-A mix of Latin, R&B, Reggae, Calypso, Jazz Fusion all in one! Interesting right and definitely something to celebrate right?

What’s his favourite part? This is what he said to me: My favourite part has been meeting new drummers and other musicians around Trinidad and also being recognized by international drum companies, which is a major bonus to my project.

His proof:

What did he identify as the most positive thing coming out of this? Here is what he shared: The most positive thing is the progress of my skills along with more drummers becoming confident to share their videos no matter what level they are at in their journey as a musician.

As he continues to inspire and grow you can follow him not just learn more about him but learn of other successes he enjoys!

Visit The Beat of the Drum on Facebook at

https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Beat-of-the-Drum/1470420983220781,

on Twitter at https://twitter.com/TBOTD_14

and on Instagram at http://instagram.com/tbotd_14?modal=true

I wish you all the best Krystian and continued success in the future!

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Celebrating Life-Part 2

On October 21, 2014 my post was entitled Celebrating Life and today I revisit it with Part 2. I honestly felt I need to and I must say that I echo everything that was said then in this post you can read at https://rachaelathomas.wordpress.com/2014/10/21/celebrating-life/.  Though some may think that based on this post the focus is on death, here I take the humble opportunity to celebrate life once again, and to show you otherwise. We must celebrate our lives and the lives of those we know as well as all other lives that surrounds us, be us human, plant or animal. In the face of death we should remember that though some can say they know, for the majority of us we do not know when or how our journey here will end and far too often we forget to be thankful for this life we have and what we have accomplished.

Added to this the links I have shared show that things can change so drastically and so many people are denied an opportunity to say goodbye. Far too often people choose to be caught up in gossip, talking ill or others, belittling others, jealousy and all the other things we should not be doing. What good does this serve? What merit is there in such acts? Day after day lives are taken deliberately or lost accidentally quite and often they include the babies among us.

Today I again ask that you celebrate your life and celebrate you. Celebrate the lives of the people around you! Please do not wait for a birthday or anniversary or a funeral to celebrate then what should be celebrated today! What if tomorrow never comes? Celebrate every smile, every kind word, every lesson, every experience, every good gesture you have given as well as those which you have received. As I write this Nickelback’s “If Today was your last day!” echoes in my head.

Say  a kind word! Do a good deed! Turn as my frowns upside down!

http://www.guardian.co.tt/news/2014-11-09/two-men-die-mosquito-creek-crash

http://www.trinidadexpress.com/news/BODIES-FOUND-282042571.html

http://www.guardian.co.tt/news/2014-11-09/family-pain-baby-woman-found-duffle-bags-brasso-seco-forest

http://www.ctntworld.com/cnews2/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=12575:brasso-seco-update-autopsy-reveals-man-killed-along-with-baby&catid=137:c-news&Itemid=707

  1. Don’t wait for tomorrow to do what you can today.
  2. Don’t live with regrets.
  3. Don’t give up.
  4. Don’t waste your time on unimportant things.
  5. Don’t waste your time on unimportant people.
  6. Don’t change who you are for anyone unless you are changing for the better.
  7. Always be true to yourself.
  8. Always see things for what they are!
  9. Remember very few people change and the other’s get worse over time.
  10.  Remember we are all God’s children regardless of how our journey ends.
  11. See every day as a blessing and as a gift from God- the present is a present!

Pray! Keep your faith! Keep your courage! Take it bit by bit and step by step! Celebrate your life and the lives of those you know and love!

Listen to Jamie Grace, “Hold me” (YouTube)

Listen to Jamie Grace, “Beautiful Day” (YouTube)

As Rascal Flatts say on YouTube, Life is a Highway!

Thank you for reading! Thank you for letting me Celebrate Life- Part 2 with you- my life, your life, the lives of our friends and loved ones, the lives of those we know and those our paths will cross, babies or adults, who we will impact on and who will impact on us!

 

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Celebrating Ms. Gayle Simmons and Let’s Learn Mandarin!

This post is exactly what it says, “Celebrating Ms. Gayle Simmons and Let’s Learn Mandarin!” Why?

Apart from loving to celebrate as you have clearly seen, I have chosen to highlight, or more  appropriately celebrate Ms. Simmons and “Let’s Learn Mandarin!” because I like the focus of her project and found an opportunity to learn a new language appealing. An opportunity to learn Mandarin is a refreshing and creative opportunity that provides many avenues to explore and engage an audience.

As an English and Spanish teacher often times I see students and many others building a barrier towards a new language.

My question to Ms. Simmons: Tell me something about yourself. Who is Gayle Simmons? (Your personality, your likes, dislikes etc.)

Her response: I am an ambitious young lady who is positive, outgoing, cheerful and very creative. I like to challenge myself with small projects whenever I have free time and I usually think out of the box. I consider myself to be quite unique as I tend to stand out because I have my own way of doing things. I love music, animals and all types of media and would like to one day be a politician.

Meet Gayle Simmons.  Her blog is entitled, "Let's Learn Mandarin".
Meet Gayle Simmons.
Her blog is entitled, “Let’s Learn Mandarin”.

I continued with the following: I love your choice of project. Please tell me what has led you to choose this as your project idea?

Her response: First of all, this really wasn’t an easy decision to make. At the beginning of the semester, I had five ideas which I was considering for a while. After speaking to Mr. James, he turned down my first idea which I had liked the most. So, yes, that means that “Let’s Learn Mandarin” was actually my second choice to do the social media project on. At first, I really had my doubts on whether I could create enough content for a blog with lots of posts but then the more I thought about it, the easier it became for me to think of many creative and unique ideas to make this project not only really fun for me to learn but to also make it intriguing to all my readers as well.

A cool pic of Gayle's name translated into Mandarin!
A cool pic of Gayle’s name translated into Mandarin!

My next question: Our projects have been running for at least 5 weeks. From day 1 to now how have you seen growth of your project?

I must say that the growth of my project has exceeded my expectations thus far. I never thought that there were so many interesting things about China and Chinese culture. If I had the time, I would write a blog every single day plus I am so excited about doing the collaborations with my fellow students. I have already begun to collaborate and I must say that I am enjoying myself a whole lot and I would even like to arrange a collaboration with students in the entire class as a massive project.

Evidence of growth and Happy Birthday fun learning!
Evidence of growth and Happy Birthday fun learning!

I asked, ‘What has been your favourite part of this project thus far?’

Gayle’s response: My absolute favourite part of this project is filming the video blogs. That is the most enjoyable part that makes the whole project worth doing. To be more specific, I truly had the most fun doing the Happy Birthday video blog simply because it involved my co-workers who were a bit camera shy at first but then I eventually got them to relax and also enjoy themselves.’

My final question to her was this: What is the most positive thing you can identify coming out of this project?

How did she respond? Here’s how: There were several positive things arising from doing this social media project, “Let’s Learn Mandarin”. One of the most significant things is discovering that I have a real passion for linguistics and would be seriously considering this field as a possible career in the future.

How can you find out more about Ms. Gayle Simmons and “Let’s learn Mandarin”?

Facebook Page:- https://www.facebook.com/MandarinLearnersWelcome

Blog:-              http://letusalllearnmandarin.blogspot.com/

Twitter:-          https://twitter.com/Trinisexychick

Tumblr:-          https://www.tumblr.com/blog/letslearnmandarin

Youtube Channel:- https://www.youtube.com/channel/UClH9ZRNZPl4u1FEvoEvmOCA/videos

Flickr:- https://www.flickr.com/photos/127631810@N05/

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Celebrating Growth!

I’m pretty sure you are wondering what is post is about and I’m happy to tell you about it! In this post, yes, I’m celebrating growth and growth we know means getting bigger. Getting bigger we would all agree means getting larger. Note too, it is not intended to be a science lesson or a religious lesson. Far too often we get caught up in life’s stresses and lose ourselves- be it in the face of circumstance or experience. Maybe it’s a life lesson but not so much so as it’s an avenue to make your smile and help you put a pep in your step.

Let’s start by recalling the words of Daniel Powter in this video:

Here I am celebrating growth, both yours and mine, so please let me and please join me! This being said, this post is fully dedicated to celebrating growth and I am celebrating growth in many different ways:

  1. Physical Growth
  2. Mental Growth
  3. Spiritual Growth
  4. Academic Growth

If we look around we see growth all around us whether it is physical, mental, spiritual or academic in nature.

With growth all around us, there is reason to celebrate. Take for example this blog, it continues to grow with every post, every comment and every view. Take into consideration the fact that my Facebook page is available at

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Celebrating-Existence/1517686251823201

and there is a Twitter page at

https://twitter.com/RachaelAThomas.

These are all evidence of growth of Celebrating Existence.

If we think of our own lives and our own growth, it’s more than enough of a reason to celebrate, so let’s celebrate. As individuals, growth comes through age and through experience. We’re all on one part of the journey or the other as described below that leads to senescence. Why wait till the very end of that journey when we won’t even be around to celebrate it? That just doesn’t make sense, does it?

We know the stages of human growth starts from Baby-Child-Teenager/ Adolescent-Adulthood-Middle Age-Old Age (Senesence) and with a plant it starts from Seed-Cotyledon-Seedling-Young Plant. Our plants and animals lend to the beauty around us and the diversity.

If we were to come back to our own growth surely this discussion will be hugely expanded. Check back through all your years and surely its evident but a lot has happened-good, bad and ugly. My own life has changed in so many ways and I am quite sure yours would have changed in several ways.

I went from baby to toddler to child to adolescent to young woman. I went from daughter, granddaughter, niece and cousin to sister and friend to student and then teacher and my portfolio has expanded now to aunt, wife, daughter-in-law and sister-in-law. Yours would have pretty much been the same and the terminology would have changed if you are male. How has yours changed? Similarly and in many ways right! Celebrate it and celebrate the journey from where you started to where you are today! Whether it’s a happy dance or saying “I did it!” will suffice.

Throughout the way you would have had a myriad of experiences and proof that you are here and reading this is proof that you survived the hard times and challenges along your way. They never end and once there is life and laughter, there is also death and sorrow. You have grown and you will continue to grow. The aim is not to sound like a broken record but celebrate your growth and achievements and revel in them! Some things to help you:

  1. Live without regrets. Do what you can today!
  2. Don’t let others get you down. Remember no one else is standing in your shoes!
  3. Find a positive out of every negative (something Dad taught me from an early age)
  4. Don’t let anyone steal your thunder.
  5. Don’t lose yourself in any situation. Always be you and be proud to be you!

Thank you for reading and I look forward to sharing more with you!

Enjoy State of Mind by Ian Van Dahl and technoparadise: