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Sunday, December 17, 2017

The Present

Gifts are pigs in a poke

and must be received with joy

because they may be the manifestation of love.

Maybe not.

Maybe a gift just means

'tis the season and you're on my list.

But on the off chance that the impetus

is love,

accept the present.

The odds are good that it's love.


Copyright © 2017 Ann Tudor
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Sunday, December 10, 2017

My Annual Christmas Reminder

I send out this piece every year in mid-December, mainly as a reminder to myself. (You might want to admire the way I reduce my own list of things-to-do by recycling this Scene from the Journey instead of writing a new one.) Here's the message:



This is such a time of list-making for me. The list I made this morning includes "make lists," proving that the high-tension time is well on its way. So I decided to make a new list for myself. Here it is:

CALM DOWN. If it doesn't get done, will the world end? Don't get frantic about trifles (or truffles, either, though I wouldn't mind having one right now).

SIMPLIFY. I envision a Christmas dinner made up of X number of dishes. Well, how terrible would it be if I served X minus 1? Or X minus 2? Or even X minus 3? (But I suppose Chinese take-out is out of the question.)


Bring an OPEN HEART to every encounter.

GIVE to those who are less fortunate. Whether it's time or money that I give, and whether it's a lot or a little, giving will help everyone, including me.

And as a gift to all of you, I offer this prayer from the Dalai Lama:

May the poor find wealth,
those weak with sorrow find joy.
May the forlorn find new hope,
constant happiness, and prosperity.
May the frightened cease to be afraid
and those bound be free.
May the weak find power and
may their hearts join in friendship.


Copyright 2011 Ann Tudor

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Sunday, December 3, 2017

Making Room for Small Beauties

Run. Run. Go faster. Don't stop for anything. Make no detours. Run straight ahead or you'll never get it all done.


This is how I lived. Once, during a brief respite, I managed to notice the small beauties that my then-calm eye chanced upon. I remember that I enjoyed noticing them.


But somehow I re-forgot how to slow down and I re-lost the ability to notice. Oh, I often put it on my calendar

and added it to my to-do list: "Slow down. Stop doing. Stop running. Remember to notice."


A friend and I (both do-ers of the first order) were talking to another friend, whom we hadn't seen for months. We asked her how she spent her days. "Oh," she said. "I read. I do a little yoga. I take a nap. I sit. Sometimes I meditate. Or think. Sometimes, yes, I just sit and ponder."


I was tired of running. As soon as I finished off my to-do list for that day, I began to slow down. I started waiting for small-beauty moments, since small beauties in our lives are really all we have.


Now my pace is deliberately and consciously slower. Keep your eyes peeled for the new me as I meander along the sidewalks of life, making room for small beauties.




Copyright © 2017 Ann Tudor
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