I recently read a book called The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz that opened my eyes to a new way of thinking and way of living. The premise is that there are four agreements you make with yourself and when followed miraculous things will happen.
As you practice living these four practices your life will dramatically change. In the beginning these new habits will be challenging and you will lapse countless times. With practice these agreements become integrated into your being and every area of your life and become easy habits to keep.
The Four Agreements are:
1. Be Impeccable with your Word: Speak with integrity. Say only what you mean. Avoid using the Word to speak against yourself or to gossip about others. Use the power of your Word in the direction of truth and love.
2. Don’t Take Anything Personally
Nothing others do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own reality, their own dream. When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won’t be the victim of needless suffering.
3. Don’t Make Assumptions
Find the courage to ask questions and to express what you really want. Communicate with others as clearly as you can to avoid misunderstandings, sadness and drama. With just this one agreement, you can completely transform your life.
4. Always Do Your Best
Your best is going to change from moment to moment; it will be different when you are healthy as opposed to sick. Under any circumstance, simply do your best, and you will avoid self-judgment, self-abuse, and regret.
For more on this, check out the book, The Four Agreements. It has the power to transform our lives to a new experience of freedom, love and true happiness.
Jaime Aldrich Cardwell
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Say you have $86,400 in your bank account and someone stole $10 from you. Would you be upset and throw all of the $86,390 away in hopes of getting back at that person who took your $10? Or move on and live? Right, move on and live.
See, we have 86,400 seconds in every day so don’t let someone’s negative 10 seconds ruin the rest of the 86,390. Don’t sweat the small stuff, life is bigger than that.
I heard a story recently about staying optimistic and having a good outlook on life and I’d like to share it today…
There were once two boys; identical twins in fact—Jason and Peter. From the day they were born, they were anything other than “identical.” Jason was born an optimist and Peter was a pessimist. No matter what happened, Jason saw the positive side of life. He was usually happy, easily satisfied, and he saw the possibilities in every situation. As positive as Jason was, his brother was equally negative. He was rarely satisfied, usually unhappy and, regardless of the situation, he predicted gloom and doom.
Needless to say, the boys’ parents were very concerned about Peter, for as hard as they tried to treat the boys equally, Peter was always unhappy.
With nowhere else to turn, the boys’ parents turned to a local Psychiatrist. After a great deal of thought, the good doctor had what he felt was a brilliant, “sure thing” solution. His suggestion was this. He said, “You know the holidays are coming. Here’s what’s going on, and here is my suggestion. Obviously, Peter feels that you favor Jason and that you give more to him than you do to Peter. So, what I want to do is to fill up Peter’s room with as many toys as you possibly can—all the greatest stuff. Then, and this is going to be hard for you to do, I want you to fill up Jason’s room with horse manure. Then what’s going to happen is that Peter is going to finally feel that he is the favored one—and thus, he will be happy. Obviously, this will hurt Jason, but he is strong and will get over it.”
Well, the parents were stunned by what seemed like an odd suggestion, but they were desperate and decided to follow his instructions.
Then, the morning arrived. As crazy as it was, the parents had done what the Psychiatrist recommended. They darted down the hall to Peter’s room, hoping to see him excited and happy for the first time. But when they opened the door, they were sadly disappointed. Peter was miserable. He was complaining about the toys and moaning and groaning about how they weren’t “the best.”
The parents then went down the hall to Jason’s room, expecting to see him very unhappy and depressed. They loved their son so much and didn’t want to hurt him, but they were just following instructions.
Well, they were stunned when they opened the door. Rather than acting depressed, Jason was throwing the manure all over the room. He was happy and excited and yelling out, “Whoopee!” When he saw his parents, here is what he said. “You can’t fool me mom and dad. With all this horse manure all over the place, there has to be a pony in here somewhere!”
The moral of the story is that optimism comes from within ourselves. We tend to find what we’re looking for, so if we want to be optimistic, we really do have the power to do so. And, when we are optimistic, we are generally happier people.
Jaime Aldrich Cardwell
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“AT three o’clock this after-noon – – – say a PRAYER – – – REMEMBER and give THANKS – – to all of our VETERANS ***** Which WAR …. was to be the last – – – and when will we learn to settle our differences – – WITH OUT a WAR *****
Memorial Day ***** A Day to remember – – where we were – – – and where are we going???
Posted in Childhood, Family, Grand-Children, Grandma, Guest Blog, Todaywith no comments yet.
When it is “SUMMER” – may as well get out in the “SUNSHINE” – and strut yourself! When Mary Ellen says we are going outside and get some “SUN” – then that is what we are going to do!
Mary Ellen is my big sister – and she does not have to work today – so we are going to take a walk all the way over to the O’FALLON PARK – and as we will be walking right pass one of her favorite “ice cream” shops – – we will each get a double-dipper ice-cream cone. Mary Ellen’s favorite ice-cream is “Swiss Chocolate” – that is the only kind she likes. Today I’m going to try the “Butter-pecan” and see if it is as good as they say??? Also, as we will be walking past all the Shops along Florissant Avenue – and do what we really enjoy doing – that is while we are enjoying our ice-cream cones – very slowly – just to make them last till we get to the park.
On our walk back – from the O’Fallon Park – we will be checking out what movies are showing at the O’Fallon Theater – – if there is something good – – we just might go to the movies tonight?? – – So, – it looks like I’ll continue with my singing… “Oh What a Beautiful Morning … – Oh, What a Beautiful Day!” – “I’m so “HAPPY” because tomorrow is my BIRTHDAY!” “Wow !- WOW-ee!”!”
Posted in Childhood, Family, Guest Blog, Today and tagged Eve Karen McClarrenwith no comments yet.
My Grandma has always been a huge inspiration in my life for as long as I can remember, and I can remember way back in the days of being a baby toddler, sitting on her lap and playing with her sapphire necklace as she read Mother Goose stories to me in such an enthusiastic, animated manor. That is when my admiration for her first began. I have always noticed her passion and spark for life.
My favorite memories of my childhood that stand out all involve my grandma. She was always there for me, for every birthday, holiday and on the weekends when I would come stay with her. I remember in grade school we would bring our favorite grandparent in for grandparent’s day and I would always be so proud to show mine off. She would play with me, again with such enthusiasm. She would teach me how to cook, sew and be creative. She would come up with all kinds of games to play and craft projects to work on together. We would play school and she would always let me play the teacher. She would be my student and we would write stories together. I always gave her a gold star on her report card. She let me believe I was teaching her, but really, she was teaching me. She taught me how to use my vast imagination to its fullest.
As I was growing up, we never grew apart or lost touch. Even when she moved out to our airport in Bowling Green and lived a hour away, we would write to each other, talk on the phone regularly and I would visit her often for a fun-filled weekend. We would enjoy the country side together and take walks up and down the runway, and talk about anything and everything. We would laugh often together. There was always lots of laughter with grandma. She taught me that humans require at least 13 good laughs per day, and I mean real, hearty ones! She also taught me to ask questions, to seek knowledge and understanding of the world around me. In addition, she always taught me to be myself and to share my knowledge and understanding with others. Why keep something so wonderful all to yourself? I am proud that her inquisitive mind has rubbed off on me.
Now grandma lives back in Saint Louis and I visit her as often as possible. Even when I’m not with grandma, she is always in the back of my mind and ALWAYS in my heart.
She has always been so strong-willed and I have never seen her cry, with the exception of when her dear friend, Russel, passed away. I remember just after he died, we were watching my sister’s play at school when she was in 3rd grade. I was in the audience sitting with grandma and the children sang a song about best friends. I looked over at my grandma and saw her beautiful face in her handkerchief, wiping her streaming tears. If there is one thing in this world I can’t stand, it’s my grandma in pain. I wish I could take all her pain away and feel it for her. Yesterday when visiting her at the hospital, she shared with me her horrifying experience in the recovery room post op. It is against hippa law to allow patients’ families to be in the recovery room with them. The doctor said it’s because the patients deserve privacy and because you may see something you don’t want to. I believe it. I never want to see my grandma in agony. As she was sharing what the experience was like with me, I felt like I was sharing a body with her at one point, as if her soul and mine were bonded and sharing her experience. I never want to see my Grandma in any kind of pain. She is a beautiful child of God and the strongest spirited lady I know. I want to be just like her.
I have learned from grandma that life is about not wasting time, working hard, imagining immensities, finding what you love and sticking with it. I’ve learned from her that the best thing you can do is practice loving-kindness and have compassion for others. It’s what keeps families together and it’s what makes the world a better place. I have the utmost love and respect for that woman, probably more than she will ever really know. May God bless her abundantly now and always!
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Hi, this is Jaime Aldrich reporting for duty. I am the proud granddaughter of Ellen Aldrich. She is taking the day off from writing, having a day of rest, so I thought I would share some pictures of my beautiful grammy and our wonderful family!Alan, me, Grandma and Alyssa celebrating Christmas!
She is the best grandma in the whole world! I love you so much grammy!
God Bless now and always,
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