That most wonderful time of the year

From our house to yours, enjoy the wonders of the human spirit throughout this string of holiday seasons that carry us into 2011. May your holiday spirit enjoy broad sprinklings of merriment, family, safe travels, and optimism for what lies ahead.

One-of-a-kind, On-line, Odd-ventures

double genache chocolate cheesecakeIn ongoing ventures as an E-preneur, I've gathered a marketplace for world-class goods that you can't find anywhere else. Please explore with me the worlds into which I've  wandered, studied long and hard the last 3 years, and discovered wonders -- gourmet specialty coffee roasting and blending; gourmet artisan chocolate; gourmet cheesecake; art prints, and artisan crafts by amazing family artists. MORE DETAILS

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Join in themes that support living in good cheer and overcoming anything the world throws at us. Favorite subjects: Family. Grandchildren. Dogs. Friendship. Excellent books. Incredible food. Cameras and photos. Espresso. Movies. Music. College sports. Baseball. Fountain pens. Cooking. Other stuff. Yours?

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Thanks for dropping by. Come again, and bring a friend.

Harvest the day

Grenville Kleiser (1868-1953) was a prolific, if not renowned American author  whose works often focused on life lessons. He taught effective personal expression through writing and speaking. A friend sent me one of Kleiser's best concepts....

"There are many fine things which you mean to do some day, under what you think will be more favorable circumstances. But the only time that is surely yours is the present. 

"Hence this is the time to:

  • "Speak the word of appreciation and sympathy;
  • "Do the generous deed;
  • "Forgive the fault of a thoughtless friend;
  • "Sacrifice self a little more for others. 

"Today you can make your life significant and worthwhile. The present is yours to do with it as you will."

This excerpt is remindful of my studies abroad in Malaysia many years ago, delving into the precepts of Eastern religions and philosophies, from the tales of the Sufi, to the writings of Rumi in the 13th Century and Gibran in the 20th Century, to the example of Gandhi.

A central theme is that we have only the moment we are living to control, neither yesterday nor tomorrow.

This approach to living led to an extremely popular notion of modern-day living, dating to the lyricist known, in English, as Horace when, during the reign of Augustus, B.C., he coined the Latin phrase  carpe diem.

Its literal translation is "harvest the day." The phrase and concept rank as one of the most widely-used across a spectrum of literature, religion (the prophet Isaiah embraced the premise, ", drink and be merry; tomorrow we may die...." - 22:13), music, theater (The Dead Poets Society, e.g.). Carpe diem is popular throughout self-help studies.

In a much simpler form, far less eloquent but equally illustrative:

Yesterday is a cancelled check.

Tomorrow is a promissory note.

Today is cash on hand. How do you want to spend it?

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In researching Kleiser, another gem surfaced:

"The habit of being uniformly considerate toward others will bring increased happiness to you."