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September 13, 2018
Bourbon County Citizen - Paris, KY

Fortune Cookies

A Chinese fortune cookie contained the message "You provide a light for others." At first brush this appeared as total nonsense, but further review revealed a much deeper definition. Our individual actions touch others, and although the interaction may be unintentional, it can have a lasting effect upon those with whom we come into contact. It's an ongoing challenge, but we must always strive to channel positive energy necessary to promote positive response. Not always a simple task, but we can avoid cursing darkness and instead endeavor to serve as a light for others.


August 9, 2018
Bourbon County Citizen - Paris, KY

Time Served

Hurry up, we're late for soccer practice, I have to work overtime again tonight, my car requires service, the yard needs mowing. Sound familiar? Of course it does! We typically dedicate our lifetime to following a seemingly urgent, but not too meaningful, day-to-day regimen. "Same Stuff…Different Day" becomes a daily mantra. Without notice, youthful energy soon fades and we are faced with the reality of a physical state which disallows the ability to pursue passing dreams from earlier days regardless of desire.

Good news…It's not too late. Stop this moment and take a deep breath. Regardless of current life status, you can change course and forge a new chain of memories with just a few simple acts. Take a drive to the country, reach out to assist a stranger, eat lunch at a spot you've passed dozens of times but never frequented. You'll soon realize a life unlived is a dull life indeed, and in the end, we won't remember time spent in the office or mowing the lawn – it's just time served!


July 12, 2018
Bourbon County Citizen - Paris, KY

Too Something

Old farmers like to say "it's always too something." Too hot…too cold, too dry…too wet, too much…too little. Very seldom is it just right. The farmer's observation is an appropriate analogy to life in general. Financial conditions are good…or not good enough. Personal relationships seem wonderful…or leave something to be desired. Professional endeavors are going great…or not going at all. Exhausted but bored. Hungry, but what to eat? Tired of surroundings, but uncertain where I'd rather be. It's human nature to mentally and physically migrate. One suggestion for coping with restlessness is to relax and remember that no matter what happens, this too shall pass, and soon you're exactly where you're supposed to be at this very moment!


June 14, 2018 - Bourbon County Citizen - Paris, KY
June 18, 2018 - Wordpress.com

Traveling On

As automobiles grow increasingly more automated, drivers are noticeably growing less aware of fellow travelers. Here are a few poor highway practices recently observed during a road trip:

• Fidgeting with electronic devices while driving is dangerous…and just wrong! • Adults should know children need to be secured by seatbelt. • Driving with illuminated high beam headlamps is inconsiderate. • The left lane is designated for passing, and not to be claimed as your personal space. • Highways are not racetracks, so trophies won’t be awarded to imaginary winners. • Extreme limo window tint restricts clear vision in both directions. • That steering wheel is not a lap tray. • 60 seconds gained from stupidity is not worth anything. • A rearview mirror was not designed for applying makeup. • Indiscriminately flicking a burning cigarette out a window into another’s path is rude. • Safe vehicle operation isn’t a video game…cars do not feature a reset button. • Littering is unsightly. • Disrespect has never been a travel requirement. • Road signs are not suggestions…That Lane Really Does End!

Remember, human life is precious, so please drive like it!


May 17, 2018 - Bourbon County Citizen - Paris, KY
August 22, 2018 - Wordpress.com

Best of You

Ask yourself: do others always get to see the best of you? Chances are, an honest response is "not exactly." After all, we are human, and often prone to being swept into the dim shadows of toxic drama which leaves negativity in its wake. A wise English gentleman once said "It's not enough that we do our best; sometimes we must do what's required." Remaining at peak positive personality levels throughout each day is a difficult task. Regardless of sincere intention, we must occasionally do our best to practice acceptance, which facilitates the ability to project positive reactions to given situations that may not be to our benefit or liking. Positive demeanor is typically received in a positive manner, which provides the foundation for allowing others to see more of the best of you.


April 12, 2018 - Bourbon County Citizen - Paris, KY
September 13, 2018 - Wordpress.com

Kick This

Americans seem infatuated with the constant thought of "kicking" something. Just for kicks, allow me to kick-start this conversation so we can kick out some ideas, and kick the can down the road a while. Consider for a moment that most fundraising or political campaigns typically commence with exhilarating kickoff celebrations where participants are encouraged to kick around their excitement yet avoid being kicked out by security personnel looking to kick some butt. Many folks enjoy the notion of publicly showing off by kicking up their heels, thus kicking up some dust, or they may choose to solemnly kick off their shoes, kick back, and let relaxation kick in instead. Oh, let’s not forget most of us are guilty of kicking and screaming in anger, procrastinating while kicking the tires, failing to kick a bad habit, or not finally kicking that deadbeat to the curb. And, just when we think we’ve kicked life’s experiences about long enough, each of us are assured to peacefully retire following that final earthly moment when we eventually kick the bucket.


March 15, 2018 - Bourbon County Citizen - Paris, KY
August 1, 2018 - Wordpress.com

Duck Herding

Many of us spend an enormous amount of time and energy attempting to arrange ducks in a row. A figurative suggestion, of course, but it describes the inner motivation some have to predict results through manipulation of variables. The intention may be totally unselfish or designed for personal gain, but either way these "duck herders" constantly attempt to control any and all factors. This troubling tendency to create outcomes is easily diminished once we unconditionally turn our lives over to a spiritual connection and accept life as it’s supposed to be. Suddenly we realize ducks aren’t designed to remain in a row; they’re supposed to walk around in a random fashion.


February 15, 2018
Bourbon County Citizen - Paris, KY

Winter

Icy wind sweeps against a murky backdrop of swirling clouds spitting snowflakes as the bleak wrath of winter naturally generates gloom and feelings of despair. Darkness dampens our emotions, weaving a seemingly constant state of lethargy. Dull lifeless landscapes constantly pose a hostile threat. Occasional intervals of warmth escape without notice, leaving a chill to the bone in the wake. Winter is a brutal test of human spirit. We trudge along as if trapped in a long, dreary tunnel, frequently losing hope of ever reaching a comfortable destination. This dismal period is an opportune time for us to approach others in an extension of compassion. Chances are you could be the only visible light at the end of their tunnel.


January 18, 2018
Bourbon County Citizen - Paris, KY

Happy New Day

"Happy New Year" is a cheerful expression often shared around the world during early days of January. Calendar pages are anxiously flipped in anticipation of new beginnings, but we seldom maintain willingness to perpetuate these best wishes into cold winter months to follow. Soon the energized new year becomes old news, resolutions fade, and we seemingly drift back to our previous lifestyles. A certain backslide remedy is to set your sights slightly lower by adjusting from an "Annual" format to a "Daily" format. Start each morning with a Happy New Day mindset, and you’re sure to enjoy the hours to follow. After all, it’s far simpler to remain enthusiastic one day at a time!


December 21, 2017
Bourbon County Citizen - Paris, KY

Better a Donkey

A young boy arrived late to audition for the upcoming community Christmas play only to discover his tardiness cost an opportunity for already assigned key roles. As the director explained the only remaining part were animals in the manger, the disgusted boy expressed "I ain’t gonna to be no farm animal," with sarcastic backlash. Just then, another child rushed into the theater even later, and practically screamed "I want to be a donkey!" The director eagerly snapped at this opportunity, immediately filling the last remaining position. The picky boy went home with only dejection to show from his unrestrained ego, and the hard lesson that sometimes in life, being a donkey is our only chance for stardom.


November 16, 2017
Bourbon County Citizen - Paris, KY

Giving Thanks

What if the only things you receive today are things you gave thanks for yesterday? It’s alright, for we’re all guilty of overlooking a constant regimen of gratitude, so forgetting to express thanks once in a while is a common occurrence. Life is filled with plenty of blessings, but we often fail to recognize them because they may seem too mundane. Sure, meeting the person of your dreams or winning the lottery would quickly be described by most as a true blessing, but what about giving thanks for such ordinary occurrences as waking up in the morning or the chance to smile at a pleasing sight? Thankfulness extends beyond a traditional annual holiday or special events. Unconditional gratitude transcends into appreciation for the most insignificant of occasions.


October 11, 2017 - Bourbon County Citizen - Paris, KY
July 11, 2018 - Wordpress.com

Boogie Men

Fear is typically sidestepped if given a choice, but it is something we must approach now and then when we can no longer go around it. Avoiding the multitude of fears experienced daily is almost impossible, yet we continuously seek deflection of full encounter through vain attempts of denial. Opting for the “Boogie Man” to disappear by keeping figurative sheets pulled over our heads is typically employed well beyond early childhood years. One of the most dependable methods for successfully whistling past the graveyard is an unconditional reliance upon the complete and total opposite of Fear, and that’s Faith.


September 13, 2017 - Bourbon County Citizen - Paris, KY
July 3, 2018 - Wordpress.com

Today’s Forecast

It’s freezing outside! Seems like it’s pouring buckets. Hot, isn’t it? Sure dry, we need a soaking rain. Gosh, it’s windy. The human race is practically unequipped to initiate, or carry on a conversation without mentioning the weather. What a superb “ice breaker” today’s forecast can be. Mighty beautiful day, or I heard it’s supposed to rain…snow…get hot…turn cold. Mudslides, hurricanes, floods, drought, tornadoes, thunderstorms, sleet, hail, and blizzards automatically snatch headlines, regardless of any other catastrophic events happening. Oh, and let’s not forget weather comments also serve as an appropriate closing to any conversation they originally opened. So, stay cool, and be careful out there!


August 16, 2017 - Bourbon County Citizen - Paris, KY
June 13, 2018 - Wordpress.com

10 Words

Ten beneficial words to a personal mantra are IF IT IS TO BE, IT IS UP TO ME. Every human on this planet has the capacity to orchestrate a commendable difference. The common challenge faced in most situations is deciding whether our chosen action creates a positive or negative impact. Just think - we normally possess the power to sway a reaction toward a desired outcome with a glance, gesture, or handful of words, and the choice can usually be predetermined. Here's the thing - positive introduction typically creates positive results and yields more gratification than a negative route. Training one's mind to remain engaged in a proactively positive mode is not second nature for most folks, but can be accomplished with practice. Start making a positive contribution today with a kind word shared and prepare to be amazed!


July 19, 2017 - Bourbon County Citizen - Paris, KY
June 8, 2018 - Wordpress.com

Bilingual Dogs

While walking home, I witnessed an elderly gentleman sitting on a porch speaking in his native Spanish tongue to a dog quietly laying at his feet. An overweight shepherd with champagne colored hair, the pooch was intently absorbing every word as his tail slowly moved from side to side. Compelled to approach the pair, I smiled and issued a verbal greeting. The man nodded, and the dog acknowledged me with an enthusiastic tail wag as I leaned over to scratch behind his ears. This newfound canine friend’s reception makes one wonder if dogs are bilingual, or perhaps the simple exchange of compassion is universally recognized by all creatures.

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