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Stay the Course

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Arch Angel Gabriel — the announcer. I’m working on giving my creativity and prayer room “a new look”.  It takes so much longer than what could be efficiently possible because I stop to read passages from books on the shelves, regroup journals and art images that lead me down other trails…and sometimes into mini-creating as I go, taking me off the path of the real job.

Here is one example.  I turned to a page in one journal dated 6-6-11.  For several pages around it, I seem to be focused on angel meditation and listening which led to these words noted upon the page for that date.

Stay the Course.

The word is Love.
The word is Prayer.
The word is Silence.
The word is Compassion.
The word is Stillness.
The word is I Am.
The word is Patience.

Stay the course, stay the course, stay the  course.

I will help you.
You are not alone.
In your humility
you are my vessel of Love and Creation.

Stay open, let me come through you.

Be in Harmony.
It is the only place of co-creation.

Stay the course, stay the course, stay the course.

 

 

 

 

 

My Writing Blessing

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I wrote this blessing as part of an assignment from an on-line course with Janet Conner, author of Writing Down Your Soul and the Lily and the Lotus, and numerous other books and on-line courses.

This is a prayer I am encouraged to come to each day before I begin my writing. I must confess, I may not accomplish that, but I always do come to my writing time with a sense of gratitude, wonder and awe for the partnership that is about to begin between my muse and me.

As I look upon these words today, it occurs to me that I have prayed it often enough for the blessing to take root within me and I can say in all truth that this is who I am and how I live my life today and it has been coming forth since the original day of this writing.

I like it just this way.

My Writing Blessing

by Susan Heffron Hajec
Truth Seeker, Peace Maker, Love Giver
and
Napkinwriter
written on September 1, 2011

May I wake to each new dawn, alive and alert, with gratitude that this is the Day that the Lord has made.

May I rejoice in the Presence of the Divine. May the angels be leaders of light and joy today on my writer’s path.

May my writing flow from my loving heart. And may these writings increase love and inspiration in the world through countless readers who are led to them.

May the light of my soul infuse my writings with the power of truth, Peace and Love.

May this light reflect the beauty of my own soul to attract and reflect the light of others.

May this light become an impassioned and unquenchable flame within me. May it attract like a magnet all good and prosperity in my personal life.

May this writer know that she is daily provided for in the grand plan of life and that she doesn’t control that plan.

May this writer sense the possibility and potential that surround her and engulf her this very day. May she serve her world through careful writing and reflection.

May I go into the night humble, gracious and fulfilled.

May my writer’s soul always renew and companion me in grace to the next word to be written.
Amen.

(some inspiration of the pattern of this blessing, provided by John O’Donohue’s A Blessing in Anam Cara, page 160.

Only Four Rules

writing rules

 

Only Four Rules

Susan Heffron Hajec  1-29-2015

There are only
four rules
for a writer.
Sit.
Stay.
Write.
Keep writing.

Bring yourself
to the empty page
or blank computer screen.
Sit.
Stay.
Write.
Keep writing.

Enter into the softness
and passion of your need
to write.
Sit.
Stay.
Write.
Keep writing.

Open into the rich resources
of your unique soul
and delight in creation
on its immediate threshold.
Sit.
Stay.
Write.
Keep writing.

Listen to the sounds
of your heart and feel
the rhythm of words
that have come to play.
Sit.
Stay.
Write.
Keep writing.

The work of writing
unfolds before you
as you
Sit.
Stay.
Write.
Keep writing.

It may be your time
to free write, edit, proof,
re-write, doodle, imagine,
change your mind, delete,
query for publication
while you
Sit.
Stay.
Write.
Keep writing.

It is always your choice
as the writer to
Sit.
Stay.
Write.
Keep writing.

daffodil

My year end blog report from WordPress said this was one of my top posts in 2014.  I thought I’d repeat it and bring a little bright yellow and sunshine to the end of the month of December and the end of 2014.

HAPPY NEW YEAR everyone and may you enjoy the light of good health, happiness, joy and goodness in 2015 each and every day.

I conclude my posts of 2014 with #400 — a repeat, but I will start anew in January 2015. Just watch!

Daffodils and Life – Both Beautiful and Fragile

 When I post on my Facebook page or put a quote on my Peace in Our Hearts and Around the World  page, I usually use my own photography. The same is true for photos I put in my Napkinwriter posts.

But last week, as I traveled different routes around town, I was regularly surprised by the bright appearance and stately stature of the daffodils which have just burst forth. They always bring joy and it seems like I can almost hear them singing or trumpeting a resound of Alleluias in this  Easter season.

I hadn’t taken the opportunity nor the time to scout out some daffodils I could get up close and personal to with my camera yet, so I googled the internet for an image.  I put the one that  I found and liked on my Facebook page as my profile picture.

I got so many comments  and “likes” about those daffodils from others, that I know I am not alone in my love of these spring flowers, some of the first to arrive behind the frosts of winter.

They add delight to your moment. Not only should we stop to smell the roses, but we can enjoy the bursts of yellow telling us it is time for us, too, to turn to the earth and contribute our own gifts to the enhancement of our soil and the uplifting of our spirits through our creativity and grounding.

…when all at once I saw a crowd,
A host, of golden daffodils…”
William Wordsworth

Spring and daffodills gently urge us to love life
and appreciate its mysteries.”
Alexandra Stoddard

I do both. I love my life. And as I get older and older, I surrender to its many mysteries, living them, not necessarily solving them.

 

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 8,400 times in 2014. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 3 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

Thank you all, readers and friends of Napkinwriter.  Here are the stats for 2014 for Napkinwriter, published by WordPress.com

You are all a part of this report. Thank you for being there for me. Now that I begin 2015 with Post #400,  I have a new creative project in mind. I will continue posting this blog, but I am also collecting (in some form) all the posts to date. I then plan to select several categories of stories and poems and then edit and prepare them for either an ebook or a hard copy book and have them published, hoping I have an interested enough audience to buy.

That’s the plan.  Prayers will help.

 

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It never bothers me that before Christmas comes, I have not written my Christmas notes on cards, created a letter or mailed the special “hello” messages in time to dear friends and family.

 

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The time that it DOES bother me is after the Christmas cards from family and friends arrive in my mailbox.  Not right away does it bother me.

I simply cherish the return address on the envelope and place it in my bright green Christmas gift bag to be read at a later “sit-down” time and date.

The newsletters from friends of high school and college age arrive and I look forward to getting a small peek into what their lives have been this past year.  We now classify as Elders and so I also get glimpses of the children and grandchildren of both family and friends that I don’t otherwise get to see. I love this.

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Some of us share more than fifty years of life lived in different parts of the world, various careers and ventures and now creations of new life in retirement.

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Family, near and far.  Christmas joy, highlights and excitement shared.

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Now as I read their news and notes, I am carrying on a one-sided conversation with them with more news I wish to share. I can’t wait to get to my cards.  Here I come……and here comes your Christmas card, after Christmas and filled with love and gratitude for the gifts we have to share.

A good friend sent me a poem about the Christmas list. And it speaks of many truths:

“Every year when Christmas comes, we go and take a look. That is when we realize these names are all a part, not of the book they’re written in, but of our very hearts…..

For each name stands for someone who has crossed our paths sometime…..we really feel that we’re composed of each remembered name…..

…just meeting you has changed our lives much more than you may think…

So, never think our Christmas cards are just a mere routine of names upon a Christmas list, forgotten in between.

…For when we send a Christmas card that is addressed to you, It’s because you’re on the list of folks we’re endeared to.

 

Whether we have known you for many years or few, In some way you have had a part in shaping things we do.

 

 

Polishing the Silver

 

Christmas comes but once a year, as the song goes. And each year as the pre-Christmas days of December arrive, so does the near and dear spirit of mom Marion, who seems to hover very close to me throughout this time.

But it is not under the Christmas tree where we meet, it is in the kitchen. Two particular memories of mom wrap around me in the hub of her home — for her, it was the kitchen.  Silver polishing, we did side by side, conversing along the way as the sparkle appeared.

The second memory was of mom’s gigantic baking projects that lasted from before Thanksgiving, through Christmas and ending up on January 2 with a homemade angel food cake for me, my favorite kind.

I have blogged about each of these in past years on Napkinwriter and I reprint the story on polishing the silver. All of these things help me know that mom has truly never left me and guides me each time I pick up the rolling pin to roll out a new crust for my very popular apple pie.

Polishing the Silver

One of my daughters called me this morning while I was fixing our breakfast. She had just received news that was rather stressful. I felt her stress land in a deep part of me as I listened.  I handed the phone to her father and he listened as well. She had a full day of professional work to get through and at this time the best we could offer her was to focus on the day ahead, help all the patients she would be seeing and return home safely tonight to her family.

We had our breakfast together and talked about a few of the items on the list we wanted to do today to get more settled in our new home. Hanging up wall pictures was at the top of the list. A house doesn’t seem like a home without them.

But first, I had a desire come over me to polish the silverware I had left out on the kitchen ledge. I wanted to do that before we got started on the other. This silverware is a small part of the twelve piece settings (two sets) from both my birth mother and the mom who raised me after her death.

We have not “entertained” as a way of life for a very long time. We have either moved away from family or moved back to smaller places so we tend to have large gatherings at my daughters’ homes instead of ours. Tom and I often eat our dinner in our TV chairs which some judge to be a bad habit, but we’re comfortable with it.

So…….I asked myself awhile back, “What am I saving the silver for!” Tom just  turned seventy years old and I am a mere year behind.

At our wedding time, more than forty-six years ago now, we filled in an eight-piece china set around the china gifts given us from our registry, but never chose a silver set.

As we’ve been moving between apartments, town homes and now finally a new home of our own again, I removed a small sample of four placesettings from each set from their chest storage and put them with the regular silverware, which is a mixed and varied mismatched group if there ever was one.

Then I took two china place settings from the china cabinet where they are stored on low shelves, harder to get down to as each year passes. Then I use these at random times just for Tom and me because, you know, time is spinning on and we don’t really have to save them for anything special because every day is special.

As I am polishing these intermixed sets from my two mothers, I listen to some prayer chant songs that really contain the essence of my faith in God and in life, and my troubled heart soothes a bit.

I also recall the specialness of this silverware, mostly the second set because that was the one mom used for all our holidays and her dining room table was the definition of special. Of the many things mom was, frugal was one of them. Her set was silver-plated, not real silver, so one of my jobs around holiday times was to polish this silver for her.

She was also the finest of cooks and bakers. So we came to the dining room table with a feast to behold. Our mahoghany drop leaf dining room table was pulled to center stage from the wall, adorned with a freshly washed and pressed linen table cloth and napkins and then filled with hot, steaming delicious meats, vegetables, fruits and desserts. Seeing, handling and using this silverware puts me right back in my girlhood dining room and times. This is the dining table Tom came to as we became an engaged couple.

My birth mother’s silverware  –  I’m just glad I have it. I think mom and dad gave it to me in our early marriage. It is one of the few tangible items I have of my mother that I know she chose, used, and cherished in her own married life, as short as it was.

The words to the chants, I am very familiar with, and begin to sing along as my hands slip along in the silvery foam suds. One of the songs was written for our Wings of Prayer group leader, On the Wings of Prayer.”

Cherish the light of each moment.
Embrace the days one by one –”

“Fear neither storm nor darkness,
Knowing you’ve done your best.”

“Enjoy the Power of being….
on the Wings of Prayer.”

So my silent prayer takes flight and I surrender to a knowledge that this prayer is powerful; that so many times we, too, walked by faith and not by sight.  And that this is an answer in itself.

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