Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Oprah's Master Class: Morgan Freeman



I love Morgan Freeman! I loved him before watching Oprah's Master Class. After watching Master Class, I love him even more.

His story is so inspiring.
About Never giving up.
About Courage.
About Providence.






"If you're not living on the edge then you're taking up a little too much space..."

This particular quote has reinvigorated me. Sometimes I get so sidetracked by my world's (read: the people around me) expectation of who I should be. My husband wants me to be a certain way. My family want me to be a certain way. My culture. My religious affiliation. All of these forces have a certain expectation of me of which I'm not certain is authentically me.

Living on the edge means taking more chances without fear of failure. Consciously, I have never been afraid of failure. Especially in recent years. However, people around me have more than enough fear for me. Where others see risk, I see opportunity and I long to move toward it. Though I have no fear of doing things, I do have fear of not pleasing those around me. Of course I want to meet and/or exceed my husband's expectations. Of course I want to be the kind of daughter/ sister/ aunt/etc. that everyone has become accustomed to. But can I really be all those things and still be the authentic me?

Which brings me to my next point. Perhaps I need a little more courage, not to brave the unknown but to stand for my authentic self.

I feel so suffocated by religion. In a universe of infinite creation and growth, how can there be only one way to the Creator? And then at the end of this lifetime, when I am rebirthed into another existence, will any of the dogmatic, religious, theological, doctrinal beliefs really matter? Can we not function in the universe and love each other, as human beings, without the weight of our differences? What if, in the horizon of new consciousness, we find out that God is in me and you and in every person on the planet? Why is it not enough to nurture that?

Let me move toward the edge and throw myself INTO LIVING COLOR rather than the dull existence of black and white print.

In the Master Class, Morgan Freeman closes with the following words:
Go placidly amidst the noise and haste
Knowing what peace there is in silence

and it goes on...
NO DOUBT THE UNIVERSE IS UNFOLDING AS IT SHOULD

Be at peace with yourself
You are as important as the stars
Providence is that unseen force that directs and moves our lives in the paths that we are destined to trod. Some call it God. I don't quite know what to make of it except that I have a strong impression that my destiny is unfolding as we speak, in the way that it should, without my prompting it or forcing it. I look forward to my purpose unfolding where I pray that I will be as free as a bird, untethered by the burden of dogma.

Be at peace with yourself
You are as important as the stars



Thank you Oprah and Morgan Freeman for inspiring me.




Tuesday, February 28, 2012

A.I. Season 11

So far, this is my ABSOLUTE favorite performance for American Idol Season 11.

Jessica Sanchez vocal styling is so unexpected and I don't really have to say anything about Deandre Brackensick. Candice Glover was awesome too. Sad she didn't make it through to the Top 24.



Enjoy!

Sunday, February 26, 2012

The Pilgrimage

My journey leads me to this shore
Far away
Through space and time
Untethered by the responsibilities of capitalism
and the monotony of employed enslavement

I find your waters a welcoming call
Ever calling me to climb upon the tale of a whale
Or dive from the top of a rocky cliff into a bottomless lake

Begged by the sounds of the rain forest
I journey in
Hoping to find
Serenity
Peace

In the stillness of my mind
A gentle wave rolls in upon shifting sands
I emerge
Baptized in forgiveness
Rising in utter perfection
Renewed and bound for greatness

A single soul on a journey
Through space and time
One drop in the ocean
One portion of the totality of the universe
One star in a sky of infinite stars
Just one but many

Friday, February 24, 2012

Deandre.... A.I.



Okay... he is one of my A.I. favorites this year. The Vegas group song that Deandre was involved in was OFF.THE.CHAINZ. also..

There's a lot of talent this year. So many talented singers! I'm excited about the season. I miss Simon but Steven Tyler is a riot. J-Lo is light years ahead of Paula Abdul. Paula annoyed me to no end. And Randy Jackson -- he's consistent. Gotta love that!

Happy Season 11!!

Monday, February 06, 2012

And I Think To Myself....

The first time I recall hearing WHAT A WONDERFUL WORLD I was watching the movie Good Morning Vietnam.


I was so moved by the story about Adrian Cronauer (a real guy), a DJ sent to Vietnam during the war to help build the morale of the soldiers. The best movies are always the ones that have a little bit of everything: the tragic comedy. This movie does not fall short of those conflicting emotions. War is such an ugly thing so the contradiction of war-images and the beautiful song, WHAT A WONDERFUL WORLD, just pulls at the heart strings.

We live in this kind of world -- so much anger and hate yet there is so much beauty and so much to be thankful for.

Thursday, February 02, 2012

Staying Motivated to Lose....

A couple of posts ago I reported that I was sick of being large and totally ready to let go of this excess weight FOREVER. Well, I'm super serious. This picture is one of my motivations. I just posted it on Facebook as my profile picture also for the same reasons I'm posting it here -- motivation! This was me at my goal weight. The picture was taken back in 2004 right before the first wedding anniversary. **sigh**
Here I am 7 and a half years from that picture, about 50 pounds heavier, and just realllllly ready to let go of the weight -- fo realz!!!

Some of the observations I make as I look at this picture is that I actually have a neck in it. LOL. My face is well defined. Lipstick--flawless. **big frown face** because AVON discontinued that particular lip gloss. The color was TEDDY BEAR. In fact, I still carry that same lip gloss from that era just hoping that I will run into a matching shade. I've gone to Sephora, Mac Makeup, Bobbi Brown to try and match and have just run out of ideas on where to get it. I should have bought a dozen of that lip gloss. **sigh** I also see a hoop earring peeking out from behind my hair. I have not worn hoop earrings since that era. I've been doing dangly earrings.

I've employed several different approaches to my weight loss journey.

#1 : LOSE IT!
This has got to be my favorite tool. It is the Lose It! website with companion LoseIt! App on Android and Mac. There's a bunch of us using it. It logs exercise and food intake/calories consumed. It tracks your weight, gives you an amount of calories you can take in and tells you what your balance is on. For instance, today, based on what I ate and how much activity I was involved I had 500 calories left on the day. That is amazing to me! I had a super difficult time a couple years ago trying to calculate "points" on Weight Watchers. This app makes it super duper simple. I find myself strategically estimating what I'm going to eat for the next meal or snack. I just love it! It also tracks your weight. I just started this and it's at the tail end of my period so all the bloating and water weight is gone. So since my starting weight of 265, I'm down 6 pounds. I'm so encouraged!

#2 : MEDITATION
Most people are unconvinced that meditation is a useful tool but it is PRICELESS. I use Kelly Howell's guided meditations found on her website BrainSync. Things that I experienced as a child that I thought were long gone emotions are actually preventing me from progressing because I've held onto it for so long. Emotions like fear, helplessness, shame, etc. are explored in depth. It can get pretty intense but the exercises are PRICELESS and very "free-ing". I use several of her meditations. This time I have actually listened to the weight-loss one several times in month.

#3 : PLAIN OLD EXERCISE
I have changed up my exercise regime to include so many different types of calorie-burns. I have acquired BIGGEST LOSER YOGA. A friend of mine has the zumba dvd's, Biggest Loser dvd's, Jillian Michaels Ripped in thirty days. The family has just been mixing it up.

To each his own. I need to stay motivated so that I can increase the quality of life as I age. My father is turning 70 this year. He still looks sooooo YOUNG. Not a wrinkle on his face. His hair just turning gray here and there. He is as healthy as an ox. Anyway -- I want that for me! It starts with taking off this excess weight.