Walking the Labyrinth
Roses on the path,
Clean shiny stone,
Color splashed across the floor.
All this and more
Make up the journey
Of the labyrinth.
Charitable sewing, Charity, Compassion, empathy, Gratitude, Homeless youth, Homelessness, Hope, Humanitarian Programs, Kindness, Making a difference, Not Forgotten, Peace, Pioneers of Peace, Shelter, Valentine's Day
POP “Project Love Bundles” is a charitable campaign to let homeless youth in Salt Lake City know they are not forgotten this Valentine’s Day.
Each bundle contains: a warm fleece scarf, hand warmers, a new pair of socks, protein bar, lip balm, and a paper crane with a handwritten quote.
Please help us by donating new 8″ X 60″ fleece scarves
“Project Love Bundles” Scarf Tutorial
Each scarf is 8″ x 60″
The instructions that follow are for a 2 yd piece of fabric because it makes the best use of yardage. If you have a smaller piece, just make sure the scarf is 8″ x 60″
1. After removing selvedge edge, cut a 2 yd piece of 60″ wide fleece into 9, 8″ strips.
2. For fringe, cut 1″w x 3″h 8 times. (8 fringes)
3. Fold fringe up to 3′ cut line and cut a SMALL slit on fold.
4. With each piece of fringe: Fold up to slit and pull it through making a knot.
HELP!!! All of my sewing friends!! If there is a better way to describe these instructions please let me know.
Also if you would be willing to donate completed scarves we would love you forever. We need 200 scarves by Feb 4 so they can be assembled into bundles and donated by Feb 5.
Drop off location will be announced soon. If you live outside of Salt Lake City, Utah, Donations can be sent to:
Barbara Scoville, LCSW
5635 South Waterbury Way Suite C-202
SLC, UT 84121
Remember there’s no such thing as a small act of kindness. Every act creates a ripple with no logical end. Scott Adams
Sunday night we had a double birthday party for my son and daughter-in-law. The house was packed with family and though it was a happy gathering, chaos abounded.
Amidst the large crowd, we had three dogs in attendance, one of which was our puppy, Mr. Bingley. Bingley was in heaven, chasing the children and being the center of attention. Kids and puppies are a perfect combination.
However, several times during the evening, the little ones had to be reminded to be “soft” with our tiny 4-pound bundle of fur. It was interesting to observe that when reminded, the kids knew exactly how to adjust their behavior:
It wasn’t hard for them to change. They love Mr. Bingley and when they became aware that being rough might harm him, a transformation took place and little nurturers appeared. The chaos was replaced with a sweetness hard to describe.
In contrast, on a daily basis I hear stories of people harming others with their words and actions. Some of it is intentional, but often it is not.
It’s easy to forget that human beings, despite our size, age, or level of success, may at times have only the emotional strength of a 4-pound puppy.
Unfortunately we don’t have super powers to look inside a person’s heart. Sometimes it’s easy to see when others are hurting but all too often people are wearing masks so that they don’t appear vulnerable.
We would be wise to remind ourselves often to be “soft.”
I am not a golfer, but I have friends who are passionate about the sport. I used to think golfing was about how “hard” you hit the ball.
My friends explained that it’s not how “hard” you hit the ball, but the arc of your swing and where on the ball your club makes contact. They said that a fraction of an inch makes all the difference in how far and where your ball will land.
In other words, a tiny adjustment makes all the difference.
Using that same analogy, consider the power of a tiny adjustment to your words and deeds, and how it could ease a soul.
Small acts of kindness might include…
A genuine smile
A gesture like a “thumbs up”
A text to say “I’m thinking of you”
A plate of cookies or loaf of bread
A pat on the back or touch on the arm
Sitting next to someone who is alone
All of these are little adjustments. They don’t require physical strength or great effort. It’s a matter of arc or intention, and where you hit the ball that makes all the difference. Softness is the strength that is required.
Such little effort can be transformative on a very large scale.
How have you been touched by little kindnesses in your life? I’d love to hear your experiences.
That’s all for now my friends.
May you always find your cup half full 🙂
Love to all,
Yeah!!! My article was published this past week on the mega blog, Tiny Buddha 🙂 🙂
You can read it here: Wabi Sabi: Find Peace by Embracing Flaws and Releasing Judgment
Last night I sprained my ankle right before leaving for vacation. I’m looking at it as a Wabi Sabi experience. Ha! I’ll be gone for the next couple of weeks but will be posting pictures along the way.
Let me know what you think of the article, and please share it with those to whom you think it would be helpful.
Until then, may you find your cup half full 🙂
Barbara (The Blog Whisperer)
P.S. Stop back on Thursday for the next Round of “Self Discovery the Michelangelo Way”
Any night of the week we can turn the TV on and hear heart-breaking stories of tragedy and loss. This past week was no exception with the devastating tornado that ripped through Oklahoma.
No words can express the horror of such an event; deep feelings of compassion and sympathy go out to all who have suffered.
As that tragedy unfolded, we saw helpers in action and listened to the sufferer’s talk about their loss while tears welled up in their eyes. In their grief they expressed gratitude to all who had eased their burdens, sometimes at great personal sacrifice.
I was both touched and moved. If you are like me, you might have felt an urgency to provide aid, if only through prayers.
We don’t need the evening news to know there is suffering. We need only look into our own hearts and the hearts of those we love, to recognize pain is unavoidable and is so much easier to bear with the help of others.
When we’re called upon to help a friend who is hurting, stories of others’ heroic service may come to mind, and cause us to feel inadequate, preventing us from reaching out. It isn’t necessary to be heroic; but being there, in whatever way we can, is important.
Other thoughts that might keep us from being there for our friends are…
What do I say?
How do I fix it?
I want to help but I don’t know what to do.
I’m afraid their emotion will overwhelm me.
They’re so strong; they can handle anything.
I want to be there, but feel guilty because I can’t give all of my time.
I have too many problems of my own to be of any help to anyone.
If they won’t listen to my advice, I’m not going to talk to them.
Suffering is one thing all human beings have in common. We all know what it means and what it feels like. Individually, interpersonally, and globally, we are united in our desire to alleviate whatever pain we can.
Helping loved ones bear their burdens is the single most powerful act of peace we can perform. It not only helps those who are hurting, but gives us a sweet and powerful energy that enlarges our soul.
When someone you know is hurting, you can…
Just be with them.
Offer a hug or hold their hand.
Allow them to tell their story. Getting it out will help them begin the healing process.
Listen to understand. Be patient. Validate their feelings.
Offer empty space. Sometimes silence along with support is what is needed.
Be genuine and sincere in word and deed.
Offer to help.
Check on them often and ask how they are doing.
Make eye contact and ask questions that show you care.
Treat them like a whole person; not a victim.
Things NOT to do…
Tell them your story.
Say you know just how they feel.
Be judgmental or moralize.
Offer false hope or try to paint a pretty picture.
Tell them how well they are doing. It usually doesn’t help and will make them feel like they can’t tell you how they are really feeling.
Tell them it’s time to get over it with pep talks.
Try to solve their problems. It doesn’t allow them to grow or heal.
Don’t ask questions unless you have time to stay and listen. It’s patronizing and is insincere.
Some important things to understand about helping a friend…
You can’t fix it.
Understand your friend is not likely to be thinking clearly or able to listen to advice.
The only way to get through a problem is to go through a problem.
If you try to help a butterfly prematurely come out of it’s cocoon, it won’t survive.
“If, of thy mortal goods, thou art bereft,
And from the slender store two loaves
alone to thee are left.
Sell one and from the dole.
Buy Hyacinths to feed thy soul”
Caring for yourself while caring for others
Remember, this is not about you.
Know your limits. Don’t say you will do something you can’t.
Don’t be shocked by what they say in the depths of their emotion.
Don’t hold on to anything they say.
If your friend rejects your help, don’t be upset. Sometimes it takes a lot of offers for the hurting person to feel safe enough to open up.
Respect your friend’s privacy, but have someone you can talk to, to help you deal with your own feelings.
Make sure you take care of your own needs so you can take care of others.
Remember you are offering a part of yourself on your terms. You are in charge.
I asked my friends on Facebook to share what they thought was most important in listening to a friend who is hurting. Here are their responses:
Benjamin wrote: “Listening in a non-judgmental way. Eye contact, nodding, asking follow up questions, and other gestures that indicate that you are listening and that you do care. : )
Richard wrote: “Love them.”
Pam wrote: “Not telling them what they want to hear, but kindly helping them find the solution from with inside themselves.”
Shauna wrote: “Not being judgmental or critical but loving and understanding. Let them know that you will still be their friend through the good and the bad times.”
Jenny wrote: “I like it when people not only respect the difficulty I’m facing as a challenge (rather than something simple that I should get over) and also express what they see that is good about how I’m handling it, which makes me feel more positive about facing my challenge. (e.g. It sounds really tough to face______, and yet you keep working at it, and if you fall down, you always get back up.)”
Richy wrote: “It’s not about waiting for your turn to talk so you can give advice…it’s about just being there to listen. People often don’t want advice; they just want to talk about it.”
Shirley wrote: “No matter the visual cues you give, actually engage your mind and heart. Think and feel the words. One thing that doesn’t help me is to say, “I love you.” I’d rather have someone show that love instead by listening. The issue isn’t whether someone loves me, it is whether someone can help bear the hurt.”
Heather wrote: “Not trying to make something that is not okay, okay. Sometimes you just need someone to commiserate with and not to make it better. Just someone to talk it through with because sometimes just having someone to talk it through with, will help you figure it out.”
Mike wrote: “Being real with them…people can tell if you don’t want to listen to them or are not being genuine.”
What do you think?
Have a great week and don’t forget to share your thoughts with our community of readers.
Until next time…
Shine on 🙂
Ten years ago I had a dream. In the dream I heard a poem in which the phrase “pioneer of peace” kept repeating itself over and over. When I woke up, I knew the dream was more than a dream
The message was, “Choose peace through kindness and service; always building up, and never tearing down.”
Small acts of kindness are more powerful than the time it takes to perform them. Many times in my practice I see how de-stabilizing mean spirited-ness and sharp words are. Long after the person who said the offending words has forgotten he said them, the recipient is still agonizing over them. The impact has far-reaching effects and is a major contributor to low self-esteem, depression and anxiety.
Becoming a pioneer of peace means choosing not to contribute to a world in which cynicism and demeaning behavior have become spotlighted in popular culture. A pioneer of peace chooses hope and compassion, and looks for opportunities to uplift others. I am a pioneer of peace (lower case). Fred Rogers, Nelson Mandela, and Mother Theresa are Pioneers of Peace (upper case).
My invitation to you; is to walk with me.