Brick By Brick

A Worthy Wall

“A Worthy Wall” Photo by Owl’s Flight – (Smithville Machining Factory – Smithville (Burlington Co.), NJ.

I’ve hesitated writing this because, first, I wanted to work through it and, secondly, I didn’t want my words to be misunderstood and sound like more rantings.

Hubby and I were talking recently one morning, when I became saddened by the latest news reports and political bashings. It’s the last thing I want to do is enter into that circus arena and add to the political and social opinions.

But, there comes a time when speaking out might help to give a different perspective. That’s what I found to be true for me when I worked through this. I found hope again and got a new outlook.

Owl’s Flight Photo via Compfight  Continue reading

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Acknowledgements: "A Worthy Wall" Photo by Owl's Fli more...

Guest Post: Boo! What Scares You? by Pat Ruppel

Two Pumpkins carved into Jack-o-Lanterns for Halloween

Two Pumpkins carved into Jack-o-Lanterns for Halloween © MSN Clipart

Hi everyone — I’m honored to be John’s guest over at “John Cali and Spirit” with my contribution of “Boo! What Scares You? by Pat Ruppel“.

This holiday and time of the year always reminds me of spooky times and of loved ones that have passed.

Here’s a little story I posted a year ago and begins like this:

It’s October and today we celebrate Halloween, where we see scary costumes, cornfield mazes and spooky ghost houses. It’s a fun time for kids and adults to let go and pretend.

It’s also the season when we’re more acceptable of the world of the paranormal. Perhaps we’re even open to tune in and listen for something beyond what we normally hear and see.

Our bodies feel the subtle energy shifts, as Nature begins to slumber. The trees drop their leaves and the plants die with the cold temperatures. There’s a bite in the air and the sky takes on a different hue, as the sun slowly alters its path around the earth.

Underneath it all there’s a fascination with death and the unknown. Otherwise why would zombies, Dracula and once-upon-a-time fairy tales be so popular these days?

Does it scare you to talk about ghosts or entertain the idea of loved ones still being with you, energetically, on a different plane? Maybe that’s what both fascinates and scares us, the unknown, the invisible and the obscure.

I hope you’ll drop by John’s site, leave a comment and share the love.

Thank You!

Pat at the ol’ kitchen table

Boo! What Scares You?

Halloween is only a few days away and, everywhere, we see scary costumes, corn-field mazes and spooky ghost houses. It’s a fun time for kids and adults to let go and pretend.

Two Pumpkins carved into Jack-o-Lanterns for Halloween

Two Pumpkins carved into Jack-o-Lanterns for Halloween © MSN Clipart

It’s also the season, when we’re more acceptable of the world of the paranormal. Perhaps, we’re even open to tune in and listen for something beyond what we normally hear and see.  Continue reading

Change and My First Video

Changing Leaves in Autumn

Changing Leaves in Autumn — Image by © Royalty-Free/Corbis at MSN Clipart

‘If you realize that all things change, there is nothing you will try to hold on to. If you are not afraid of dying, there is nothing you cannot achieve.’ ~~ Lao Tzu    (taken from Leo Babauta’s “Zen Habits”)

Change happens and is natural. It’s constant starting with the ticking of time. If you’ve been on my site before, you’ll notice I made a change to the colors and picture. I’ve been in a funk lately. I felt stuck and decided to shake things up. It helps to jump-start creativity and get the brain juices flowing again.  Continue reading

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2013 Pat Ruppel

Scared of Letting Go

Do you remember the movie “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade” where he needs to cross a great precipice as the last of 3 challenges given him?  He takes a leap of faith stepping over a cliff in space onto what seems to appear an invisible bridge.  I’ve often wondered what it takes to let go like that.  Where does the courage come from?  How can you know?

Photo by Jim Ruppel – Copyright 2012

When I first saw that movie years ago, I remembered thinking, “No, I don’t think I could ever do that!” I still don’t think I could and yet there are times in our lives when not taking the leap is more life threatening than we realize.  That is explained better is this wonderful little story called “The Rope” where letting go was just too hard to do.

Aren’t we faced with similar risky decisions every day – of course, not as dramatic or life threatening – but decisions nonetheless that could very well reshape the course of our lives?  But, it seems the majority of time we choose a path most familiar, comfortable with the least resistance.  Never realizing how much more fulfilling and exciting our lives could be.

I think this is where I’m at in this stage of my life – reaching inside to find the courage to just let go of the rope.  I’ve tried it in the past but was not as committed as I would like.

This time, circumstances have permitted and blessed me with the opportunity to take stock again of the priorities in my life.  So I’ve started writing on this blog again and putting more personal stories out there.  This is my latest leap.

I remember years ago at a major employer’s I was given the opportunity to create and pilot a workshop series for co-workers.  I felt then too like I was taking a huge leap especially in the corporate world.  I was scared to death.

The pilot was called “Wisdom for the Ages” and its purpose was to connect to one another on a more personal level by sharing via a talking stick on specific topics (i.e. trust, leadership, attitude, harmony).  All were invited no matter the position to 4 one-hour workshops. I would ask questions, play tapes and read poems expanding on the topic.

I know it sounds corny and that is what was scary – just presenting this in a corporate environment.  I really didn’t know what I was doing and always squirmed at getting up in front of groups to give a talk.

But here I was taking the leap with the gut feeling that there must be a way to get to know co-workers more with the length of time we spend at work every day.  Maybe if we knew each other better there would be more understanding, collaboration and sensitivity to each other’s feelings.  We would have a better feel for where our co-workers are coming from.

I remember coming out of a supervisors’ meeting after giving an overview of the workshop and thinking, “What! Was I crazy?” “What do I think I’m doing – poems for crying out loud and a talking stick?”  I ducked in a small conference room to gather myself before going back to my desk and cried.  I was really out of my element. I called my husband and he calmed me down saying, “It doesn’t matter what is thought – it doesn’t change what it is.”

I regrouped and went back to my desk and noticed that the supervisors’ meeting let out with everyone going back to their desk.  One of the supervisors passed my desk and stopped to thank me for the overview.  She said it took everything within her power to hold back the tears when I read the poem as she had been dealing with the emotional strain of her mother dying.  It reminded her how important life is even when working.

She hugged me with tears still in her eyes and all the fear I felt and frustration melted with the feeling in my heart I had connected in a way I had wanted in starting this pilot.  It was worth it.

I’m scared now wondering if I can connect in that same way again but with writing and e-books or should I do as I had done before – give into the fear, not commit and get back in the corporate world again before too much time has lapsed.

We all feel it when we’re faced with challenges of the unknown – some more serious than others. But if you’re scared to make a life change – moving out, going back to school, or even quitting your job and traveling the world – listen closely to see if you hear a voice telling you, “let go of the rope” and take a chance.  It may be the best thing in your life you’ve ever done.

Pat – from the ol’ kitchen table