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Happiness as a Hymn March 20, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Happiness, Life Balance, Mindfulness, People.

Yesterday, I read an undated Philosophy paper my mother wrote years ago ~ probably in college but possibly later in life.

After addressing a number of different theories (Existentialism, Rationalism, Determinism, Intuition), she concluded with the following:

What are we trying to achieve?

Here, I believe with Plato and Aristotle that the highest good is the full development of our individual potentialities ~ and this is happiness, complete in itself, the intrinsic good.

The individual will know happiness as a state of being, not as a momentary pleasure, and it will be the hymn of his life to uplift him and to sing on into the lives of all who know him.

On these points, she agrees, also, with the Dalai Lama . . . we are here to be happy and to make others happy.


Let that be the Coda to each of our lives.

Aah . . . that’s better!

“Happiness is the meaning and the purpose of life, the whole aim and end of human existence” ~ Aristotle

Related posts:  Coaxing the Statue from the Stone * International Day of Happiness (Huffington Post) * International Happiness Day (T4D)

Clean and Green March 19, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Art & Photography, Home & Garden, Less IS More.

After we donated our extra refrigerator from the garage, the stuff inside our garage had fewer places to perch and became a bit jumbled and tumbled.

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We had some green totes sitting high and dry and decided to put them into service as storage bins.

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One problem, they wouldn’t fit on the flimsy shelf unit we’d inherited with the villa.

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So we bought a sturdier shelving unit from Home Depot and BFF assembled it to accommodate the idle green totes.

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Now we have a tidy place for everything to hide inside . . .

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And can keep everything in its place . . .

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Aah . . . that’s better!

I wrote and scheduled this post several days before the WP Daily Post issued the Weekly Photo Challenge ~ Inside.  Note the uncanny similarity between their totes and ours.  Spooky!  All we’re missing is the baby!

Pizza . . . Pick Up or Delivery? March 18, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Food & Drink, Happiness, Humor.

Much of life is spent waiting in lines and sterile waiting rooms.


To save waiting time, people often call ahead for pick up or delivery.  Some drive through the drive-through.

Not us.

We wait until we get to Oma’s Pizza to order a pie for take out.  Then we cross Gulf Drive and enjoy the view while “waiting” for our pizza to bake.

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Aah . . . that’s better!

Shades of Misanthropy March 17, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Life Balance, Mindfulness, Nature, Poetry.

Sample_Picture08Perhaps my philosophy
Includes shades of misanthropy

A cynicism born of man’s endless fascination
With devastation and decimation

All in the name of progress

Each step forward erodes the foundation
Of natural creation

What is a cathedral or skyscraper, however high
Compared with a mountain peak ‘neath a clouded sky?

What is electric generation and digital manipulation
Compared with starlight, moonbeams, and fireflies?

In auditoriums, applause and accolades
Distributed to the chosen few
Like manna to man
Erode our view
Of what makes life worth living

Outside the skies ebb and flow
from night to day

While we remain asleep at the switch

Aah . . . that’s better!

Related Post: The People who Make A Difference (Good Time Stories) * Red Mountain (Janna T. Writes)

“The reason men are so anxious to see themselves, instead of being content to be themselves, is that they do not really believe in their own existence.” ~ Thomas Merton, A Search for Solitude: Pursuing the Monk’s True Life

Playing The Blame Game March 16, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Happiness, Health & Wellness, Humor, Mindfulness.

Broccoli-Mocking-StewieIt’s a shame when we insist on playing the blame game, because we proclaim ourselves as “victims.”

Much better to see our part in the process and maintain our autonomy and freedom of choice.

When we control our thoughts, we control our life.

Aah . . . that’s better!

Related posts:  Owning Up (Suzicate) * How to Get Out of Prison (Gems of Delight)

One Stone March 15, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Humor, Joke, People.

One Stone, a Native American born with only one testicle, hated his given name.

For obvious reasons.

He asked everyone to stop calling him “One Stone.”

Few obliged his request.

For equally obvious reasons.

After years of torment, One Stone had had enough.

He shouted, “If anyone calls me One Stone again, I will kill them!”

Word got around and nobody called him One Stone any more.

One day, a young woman named Blue Bird forgot.

When Blue Bird said, “Good morning, One Stone,” he grabbed her and took her deep into the forest where he made love to her all day and all night until Blue Bird died from exhaustion.

Word got around that One Stone meant what he said and said what he meant.

Years went by and no one dared call him by his given name.

In time, a woman named Yellow Bird returned to the village after being away for several years.  Yellow Bird was overjoyed when she saw One Stone.

She hugged him and said, “Good to see you, One Stone.”

One Stone grabbed her, took her deep into the forest, and made love to her all day, all night, the next day, and the next night, but Yellow Bird didn’t die.

Why not?
Come on . . . take a guess.

Think about it.

The reason is so obvious.

Everyone knows . . . you can’t kill Two Birds with One Stone!!!

Aah . . . that’s better!

Source: e-mail from unknown author (sent by Joe M.)

Illustrations: Wikipedia ~ Navaho people (in Public Domain)

OMPM: Television & Blogging March 14, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Blogging, Life Balance, Mindfulness.

Brian-with-coffee-and-newspaperIt’s been a long time since I wrote an OMPM: One Mistake People Make post.

Two posts I read yesterday spurred me to write this one.

(1) Maggie’s post ~ Land of the Free, Home of the Ignorant?

Maggie’s review of Susan Jacoby’s book, The Age of American Unreason, included Jacoby’s unreasoned opinion on blogging:

Blogs “spew forth, in largely unedited form, the crude observations of people who are unable to express themselves coherently in writing…”

Jacoby might be right . . . about some of the blogs some of the time.


But that doesn’t mean that we should make Jacoby’s mistake and lump all blogs together before dumping them into a single “waste” basket.

When blogs “spew forth, in largely unedited form, the crude observations of people who are unable to express themselves coherently in writing,” the solution is simple:

Stop following those blogs.

(2) Eric’s post ~ Wasting, Existing, or Thriving

Eric’s post has much to commend it, but his admonition about television lumps a panoply of education and entertainment into a very small “waste” basket:

4.  And this one might get me in trouble… Turn off the TV. How many hours do you waste (see, we’ve come full circle to waste) in front of that screen? Lessen your attraction (addiction?) to it and find other things to do, things that will stretch or challenge you. Consider actions that will nourish your thriving.


Whether watching TV is a “waste of time” depends on the viewer.  Engaging in any activity in a mindless way can be a waste of time ~ whether that’s blogging, listening to a podcast, watching TV, or reading a book.  

It’s NOT the activity but the attention we bring to it that matters.

Snoopy5Television brings nature, history, science, discovery, travel, cooking, drama, medicine, space exploration, and comedy directly into our living rooms.  

Most of us could never hope to experience all of that on our own even if Oprah agreed to finance our endeavors and we didn’t mind increasing our carbon footprint.

Snoopy5Watching thought-provoking shows (and reading inspiring blogs) allows us to expand our minds and experience life through the eyes of others.

Of course, there’s also a lot of “empty fodder” out there. It’s up to us to pick and choose where to place our attention.  See #1 on Eric’s List. 

Snoopy5We control the remote and can change channels from mind-numbing to mind-expanding fare.

When we are actively engaged and enjoying ourselves (even if we are “only” chopping wood or carrying water or cooking dinner or watching TV or reading a blog), we are not wasting time ~ we are living in the now.

Snoopy5When we are mindful as we read, write, sing, dance, and observe life (in real time or on TV), we are in a better position to:

* weigh possibilities and make wiser choices
* reclaim the reins and honor our priorities
* enhance what we get out of every experience

By way of example, watching a short clip like this might help us plan a fun, exciting, and educational summer get-a-way for the whole family:

When we remain awake and aware, we find we have not wasted our time.

Aah . . . that’s better!

Addendum:  David at Raptitude shared 15 Powerful Side Benefits of Living in the Moment.  On TV viewing, he has this to say:

11. You become less attracted to passive entertainment like TV.

One of the big draws of television is that it’s an effective way of giving you a break from your thoughts at the end of the day. A mindfulness habit gives you frequent breaks from your thoughts throughout the day, and so you no longer need TV as a therapeutic device. You’re already “unwound” by the time you get there. It can still be entertaining, but your standards for what to watch will rise.


Related posts:  75 Waggish Ways to Waste Time * OMPM ~ Overkill *  OMPM ~ Hanging on to Anger * Blogging: A Waggish Waste of Time? * Spring Break?  Travel Blogs Help You Pack Your Bags (WP News)

Stand Your Ground March 13, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Animals, Home & Garden, Humor.

Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” law is controversial . . . encouraging people to fight when threatened rather than flee to safety.

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But in our villa, we encourage Tigger to stand his ground when infidels infiltrate his domain.

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And he obliges.

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He is NOT a scaredy cat.

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Aah . . . that’s better!

One Stitch At A Time March 12, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Art & Photography, Nature, People, Poetry.


Day dawns, sun sets, time passes

Man imagines


Birds soar, cats stalk, fish swim

Man creates


A tapestry woven one stitch at a time

Aah . . . that’s better!

A Retiree’s Last Trip to Kroger March 11, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Humor, Joke.

Pluto-HappyYesterday I went to the local Kroger’s to buy a large bag of Purina Dog Chow for my loyal pet, Jake the Wonder Dog.

The woman behind me in the check-out line asked if I had a dog.

What did she think . . . I had an elephant?

On impulse, I said, “No, no dog.  I’m starting the Purina Diet again.  Last time, I lost 50 pounds before waking in intensive care with tubes coming out of most of my orifices and IVs in both arms.”

She stared at me, mouth open, so I continued, “It’s an easy diet.  Load your pockets with Purina Nuggets and simply eat one or two every time you feel hungry. The nuggets taste great and provide balanced nutrition so I’m going to try it again.”

At this point, everyone in line was enthralled with my story.

Pluto-Rollerskating“How did you end up in intensive care?  Did the dog food poison you?”

“Oh, no, nothing like that.  I stopped to pee on a fire hydrant and a car hit me.”

Aah . . . that’s better!

Source: e-mail from unknown author (sent by Joe M.)

Watch what you ask retired people . . . they’ve learned the art of passing time while waiting in line.