“Take only memories, leave only footprints.”
—Chief Seattle, Duwamish Tribe Leader & namesake of the City of Seattle
Image form Unsplash by NASA
Many of us are living simpler and more essentially these days. Taking less seems to be giving many of us more of the intrinsic things we value most.
I can recall visiting the Disney World exhibit sponsored by Kodak—the powerhouse of photography—when my kids were little. The catchy tune “Making Memories” inspired us to take a photo safari around the park, taking snapshots of us wearing the wild hats in each gift shop, without making a single purchase.
I also easily recall being glued to the TV in 1969 when man landed on the moon. Although some rocks were taken for study, the most impressive visual I recall was the astronauts jumping for joy, and of course, the many footprints they left, establishing the fact that they were there.
How would your life become even more fulfilling and meaningful if you embraced Chief Seattle’s coaching?
“God gave us our memories so that we might have roses in December.”
—James M. Barrie, 19th Century Scottish author of Peter Pan
Image from Unsplash by Debby Hudson
It is February, and Michigan is in the grip of winter. The blooming flowers of spring and summer are months away. For many, the weather can be physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually draining, making it feel that a good bit of our “get up and go” has gotten up and gone.
Our minds can, in such situations, operate as time machines, in which we experience some of those sunny days in which our lives were far rosier.
Consider a three-to-five minute daily meditative journey today, and for the rest of the weeks of winter. Reminisce and bask in some of the sunnier days of your past. How can and will you take this energy boosting experience into your day and spread its beauty to those in your personal and professional communities?
“What comes easy won’t last long, and what lasts long won’t come easy.”
Image from Unsplash by Dallas Reedy
Are you a builder?
All of us are, to some degree.
Take a trip into your memory banks to revisit the sand castles, school projects, tree houses, do-it-yourself projects, and perhaps even a business, you have begun or completed.
How much time and effort went into each example? Which of these have stood the test of time?
If you enjoy the idea of building extraordinary things, consider checking out the series Impossible Engineering on the Science Channel. Each episode details how giant structures and record-breaking buildings are built, how they work, and how they have shaped our modern world.
What are some of your most important personal and professional projects?
How will you maximize your efforts and levels of commitment to make sure they are built to last?
“To keep a warm heart in winter is a real victory.”
Image from Livestrong
We are currently in the grips of winter here in Michigan, and today’s quote reminded me of a story a friend shared at a holiday luncheon.
As a little girl, she would often wait outside in the cold for the school bus. To keep her warm, her mom would bake small potatoes in aluminum foil and slip them in her pockets to hold through her mittens, making her wait a bit more comfortable. Once in her seat, she had the extra benefit of a tasty snack to eat on her way to school.
To this day, she attributes this heartwarming story from childhood for her current fondness for hash brown potatoes for breakfast.
What heartwarming strategies can you employ to show your love and care for others this winter, and all year long? If you happen to have one of your own heartwarming stories, please hit reply and send it my way!
“Live today so your memories will reward you tomorrow.”
Among all the capabilities of our smart phones, perhaps no other application provides more value and long-term enjoyment than the camera. If charged, the phones are always ready to capture life’s wonderful and memorable moments.
Recently, my wife’s phone was broken. It appeared to have lost all of her priceless photographs, including the weddings of both our children, multiple bucket-list vacations, and literally thousands of life events that have made our life so precious.
I’ve never seen her so upset. The stress compelled her to seek out a store called You Break I Fix to save her treasures. Happily, after some technological wizardry and a hefty fee, they saved the moments and days of our lives, to reward our tomorrows for years to come.
How can and will you live even more intentionally, to experience and capture more of the precious and priceless moment of your life?
Memorial Day 2016
Image from Flickr by Tim Evanson
Memorial Day is a federal holiday in the United States, given to the memory of people who died while serving in the armed forces.
No matter where you live on this remarkable planet, please take a few moments today to honor the members of the military in your country.
“Collect Moments, Not Things.”
On the ninth of March my family did something magical to celebrate my wife Wendy’s birthday. We went to Disneyland in California.
For me, collecting the moments of discovery, joy, and amazement were the highlights. The beautiful expression on Wendy’s face in today’s photo sums it all up!
By the end of the day our cell phone batteries were completely drained from all the photos we took and the texts we sent. That was a good barometer of how well we spent the day! We also purchased a Precious Moment figurine and a few other things to commemorate this special day.
Where would collecting more moments and less things make the biggest difference in your world?
“All it takes is one song to bring back 1,000 memories.”
I’m a big fan of satellite radio. In the States, we have Sirius XM. I like that it is commercial free, that I can receive the signal wherever I may be driving, and that I can select the programming that suits my taste at the moment.
Last summer, I took a road trip back east with my wife Wendy and my father Marvin. The trip is well over 600 miles and can take anywhere from 11 to 14 hours depending on traffic and rest stops. Each of us had a favorite station. Mine was Watercolors, which highlights contemporary jazz. Wendy prefers The Bridge, which plays folk rock and music of the 60s and 70s, and my dad takes many trips down memory lane listening to Seriously Sinatra.
Select your favorite CD, radio station, or satellite channel today. Listen, and allow any memories that may rise to surface. Consider doing this exercise with someone close to you to bring back some of their most cherished times.
Please feel free to reply to this post with a short list of your favorite songs, and the memories they stir up in you.
– Oscar Hammling, writer
Many of us long for the good old days, the years of our youth – where things seemed simpler and the stresses of the modern world didn’t knock on our door, call us on our phone, or enter our email inboxes.
We selectively go into our memory banks and replay all those reruns of family vacations, personal adventures, and winning moments … without any of the commercials that were there all along.
Consider the Kodak experience at Disney World. Perhaps “making memories” is what our days are for. With this perspective in mind, how do you intend to live this day?
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