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Clearing Starts with Something Fun!

Do I ever feel stuck? Yes. Do I have things I can do to get unstuck? Yes. A big “stuckness” I am feeling these days is simple upkeep of our apartment. How do I separate out the little things I can do on a near daily basis, and how do I stop from seeing the whole big picture of overwhelm? It is not a huge apartment, but dust accumulates, laundry piles up, groceries need shopping, dishes littler the kitchen counters and sinks, bathrooms need frequent attention and garbage needs taking out to the dumpster.

I swiftly handled the last one a couple of months ago. We upped the rent payment to include garbage being picked up by maintenance outside our front door, instead of struggling my way uphill to the dumpster bin. Done! Also the grocery shopping is now handled by SHIPT and I am quite happy with that. Two things “cleared”.

I don’t know about you. But I often put “reminders” for myself that I can’t miss and here are two of them that speak to my general intention and way of life. They are posted on the wall in front of me at my computer where I work a good portion of my day.

When I read these and trace y Reiki symbols, it corrects my course if needed and establishes my mindset and intention for this day.

This one is a little out of focus here but not on my wall. It sets my direction to continue working with an on-line course I signed up for with Om to help me etch away at all the little things that make up the big picture of “stuckness” in establishing order and harmony in my daily environment upkeep. Each day, a very short email has great things, sometimes only to think about, other times specific things to choose to do. I will by the end of the year have 365 insights and also a feeling ingrained me me that there is something today I can do to feel unstuck and accomplished that benefits the big picture.

Here is just “big thing” bugging me. The kitchen area needs top-down deep cleaning. It makes me tired to look at it and think about doing it. Yesterday was Saturday and I decided to Surrender and Simplify the steps needing to get it done. I have recently gotten a walking and standing impediment, so I brought a chair into the picture to help me.

But first, I started by sitting and doing something fun….practicing trees and landscape in my watercolor notebook. Because if I don’t paint fairly regularly, I get stuck getting back to the painting table.

Next, I put a load of wash in the washer and then brought my attention to the pantry closet which needed to be cleaned and organized. I did it!!

Feeling emboldened and uplifted by this accomplishment, I proceeded to the “lazy susan” turntable cupboard and did the same turning chaos into order, and getting nutritious breakfast foods handy. After which I took an armchair break for a snack and some Candy Crush game time.

This was beginning to feel like self-care because I could see I had made a beginning in a corner of my space. Other things that will need my attention but I feel more accepting of that and that I will get to them. Yes, I am clearing.

But for now, one more thing needs to be done which will make me feel much lighter when I gaze into my kitchen The cupboard surfaces need cleaning and waxing. Today, I can do that to four lower cabinets and beneath the sink. I can finish the upper ones later and perhaps with help.

In Lesson 9 it says….”At the heart of it, clearing is not about tackling the unsightly messes, the clothes that don’t fit, the emails that invade your inbox, the to-do lists that get longer by the second. Clearing is not about fixing a problem or reaching for a solution. It is about how you relate to the experience.

It is the space between the issue and the desired outcome where the real goodies are and where the real clearing happens. Allow yourself to contemplate this one today, even if you have no clue what it means.

I am somewhere in the 60s into the lessons and I am beginning to have a clue.

…And so I began writing about a family secret. It became a memoir, JOURNEY GIRL: Steps in Secrets and Sanctuary. Every family has secrets. Some might be told; some might not. I had called the invisibility of my birth mother a secret for the very long time that I lived it as something not to be spoken about.


But something began to change as I organized my thoughts, felt my feelings, and kept a faithful practice to putting these down on paper as best I could. What changed? My understanding expanded to amplify the difference between the words, secrets and silence. And I came to feel that my parents were not intentionally focused on my birth mother being kept a secret from the three of us children, particularly me. I came to believe they actually felt that silence about her would be more protective and loving to us than living with her presence. I am not sure that is true for me, but in terms of intention — it was a loving one for my parents. That is a whole lot different than what I felt as I discovered bits and pieces of my birth mother’s identity and truth.


A parent is always about protection. I know that to be true for me. Even though total and forever protection is impossible, it is the first and lasting thing I know as a parent myself. As babies and growing children, my top anxiety was that I care, love, and protect them into adulthood. That nothing would happen to our daughters before they reached adult age. But then, I discovered it didn’t stop there. I wanted to protect them from growing pains, from tough decision-making, from hurts of the heart, from disappointments and failures, — knowing full well these are a part of all human life. I want to protect them from losses, from losing their parents through death. It will happen and this protection desire never stops.

This quote caught my eye while I was writing JOURNEY GIRL. I had a sense that in the silence of writing my story, my ancestors were a silent, protecting presence encouraging and enabling me to go into the places I feared and felt I would judge harshly and yet when I took a deep breath and trusted and wrote into those spaces, what resulted was an overwhelming feeling of love going back through the generations from me and a sure outpouring of love coming back from the silence from them to me. For this experience, I am grateful. And from this experience came the realization that this protection truly does keep happening from parents back through the ages. What they have to give is — LOVE — and that is the ultimate protection.

I Am Loved and Protected

Where is She Now?

Recreating…..always…..recreating

You know those little news blurbs of famous persons of years ago who had a big fan base? And a current time news blurb comes on with, “Well, where are they now?” And you are always interested.

Soft Rose watercolor by Susan Heffron Hajec

Well, where is Napkinwriter now? She’s been gone for a bit, off of her regular stride of somewhat consistent postings with a few leaves of absence over the years. She has been “not wanting to work”. And while her Napkinwriter blog is still near and dear to her heart, she just hasn’t found the impulse of what more needs to be said…or written.

She has, in the year 2020 — the year of COVID 19– focused in on completing her work of two years total — JOURNEY GIRL: Steps in Secrets and Sanctuary, and it was published by Balboa Press, a division of Hay House Publishing on September 15, 2020. And she is very proud and happy about that. She is grateful with the voice that flows through the words on the pages and were influenced by strong presences of ancestors and guides and angels as she told a story they all seem to want to be written.

This book began and continued in its first six months to have meaningful and appreciated sales. I am enjoying wonderful discussions and appreciation from its readers. I am an author now and proud and happy about that. It is a deed I am grateful to have completed and felt it was my true work to do.

During this time, I have also fallen in love with playing with watercolor. Sometimes I get something really nice. Sometimes I sell something. Sometimes I am just delighted to see the color flow and make magic on the paper. But I know I am hooked. It doesn’t matter anymore whether its really good or not so good. It is happiness and joy while I intermingle with the water and paint. The Canadian artist, Angela Fehr, whom I have been following and taught by for probably 3-4 years now has brought me to this discovery point. I am becoming my own favorite artist and I am having fun.

My painting of Aurora Cabin Lesson from Angela Fehr

What will I write next? It’s been a blank for me for awhile. I will continue with Napkinwriter. I will build a Social Network presence around JOURNEY GIRL and for more writing……these have appeared on my horizon….when I want to get back to work.

“Seasons of Grace” a collection of my lost and found poetry Tom says I must produce and publish for family. And “In My Life, I’ve Loved You More.” Assorted Essays of the most likely and unlikely people I have dearly loved. Two works to be completed even though I really don’t want to work anymore. I am still filled with being and grateful for life.

Thomas Joseph Hajec, born December 14, 1941

He came in a hurry. Didn’t make it to the hospital….the doctor told his mom to meet him at his office and the doctor and nurse delivered him pronto. His father needed to return from up North on a hunting trip to greet his new son. His mom carried that photo around in her wallet until after the time I met Tom and whipped it out to anyone who let her get started on this story. Then one day, she gave it to Tom. He had one brother, Stanley waiting at home to meet him. Tom doted on his big brother, counted on him for many things. Was terrified when his brother went to the hospital to have his appendix removed.

“A Blessing for You…You are in God’s place at God’s perfect time. He has gifted you and placed His hand upon you to bless you and make you a blessing.” Roy Lessin ….on a birthday card given to Tom by Doug Warriner.

This is all true and never a bigger blessing than in the family life he is the head of. We are blessed, indeed. Faithful, loving husband, father, and grandfather. Today, he turns 79 and continues his purpose, accomplishing many healings throughout the years and like the energizer bunny….keeps going on.

Daughters, Laura & Kathleen

Grandchildren, Devon and Andrew….
accompanied by Tyler and Kathleen and Greg

Granddaughter, Amy with Mom & Dad Laura & Carl

A Family Labyrinth of Love

We all love you Tom….looking forward to many new days ahead….

December 14, 2020, a historic family day for us and…

for our country…..as the approved Pfizer company vaccine to defeat COVID 19 virus has started being given to front line health care providers and the elderly today in the United States….

and the United States of America’s Electoral College elects a new President to care for the well-being and safety of our citizens.

May God continue to bless our family, the country’s families, and our country.

We all need a new day — of kindness, honesty, and purpose. I’m in.

SUE’S ART GALLERY  — THIS WEEK ONLY!
FRIDAY Nov 27 – FRIDAY Dec. 4

20% OFF regular pricing

“Pretty in Pink”

Pretty in Pink

ORIGINAL 5×7 WATERCOLOR PAINTING –  measures 8×10 in mat and backing . Ready for frame.   Professional watercolors, professional grade watercolor paper. Protected in clear acid free wrap and shipped media postage rate in protective packaging.

BLACK FRIDAY Week-long Sale 
FRIDAY Nov 27 – FRIDAY Dec. 4

20% off

     Reg. $60 now$48 plus tx, shipping, & handling

Easy payment through PayPal (you don’t need an account)

Contact Susan Heffron Hajec at

sue.hajec@gmail.com 

with your email address and mailing address

Questions? 269-491-3602


More 5 x 7 Watercolor Paintings

5 x 7
“Flower Petal Dance”

5×7
“Mystical Hills”

5 x 7
“Peace”

BLACK FRIDAY Week-long Sale 
FRIDAY Nov 27 – FRIDAY Dec. 4

20% off  8” x 10” Watercolor Paintings

Reg. $90 now $72 plus tx, shipping, & handling

Easy payment through PayPal (you don’t need an account)

Contact Susan Heffron Hajec at

sue.hajec@gmail.com 

with your email address and mailing address

Questions? Call Sue at 269-491-3602

ORIGINAL 8 x 10  WATERCOLOR PAINTING measures 11 x 14 in mat and backing – ready for frame   Professional watercolors, professional grade watercolor paper. Protected in clear acid free wrap and shipped media postage rate in protective packaging.

8×10 Watercolor Paintings offered at this special
follow below: 

8 x 10
“ Waterfall Cliffs”

8 x 10
“Autumn Day”  

8 x10SOLD!
“Flowers in the Spring”

8 x 10 
“Tree Scenery”

8 x 10
“A Special Tree”

Thank you for taking a Gallery Tour. Satisfaction guaranteed or purchase price refunded. You can find me on my personal Facebook Page at
www. Susan Heffron Hajec | Facebook or Sue’s Art Gallery Facebook page
www. Sue’s Art Gallery | Facebook

Blessings of happiness, health, and safety to you and yours through the ending of 2020 and the launch into 2021.

Grace is There

“The First Rule is simply this: Live this life and do whatever is done, in a Spirit of Thanksgiving…and come to comfortable rest in the certainty that those who participate in this life with an attitude of Thanksgiving will receive its full promise. ” John McQuiston II

In JOURNEY GIRL, I have shared my story with you, the reader, for whom I am grateful. I believe I have drawn out in a collage of words, reflections, stories, and Islands of Silence how it is a story of living grace.

The presence of grace is not one of constant joy, peace, and nurturing. Grace has rough edges and it can be loud even, or an unwelcome wake-up call at times. Grace urges us forward into fear-filled places and holds us back in times of uncertainty and doubt. Grace does not always feel like a blessing and can sometimes only be realized in hindsight.

Grace, though, is the holder of our big picture.

As I grow older, I seem to be more aware of this steady presence of grace. I know that it is with all others too. I trust it more implicitly. I really can rely on its being in the mix of the answers and solutions to my problems.

When I am in fear, doubt, and even despair, when the road looks unknowable and even bleak, this resident amazing grace pulses within the core of me just as the core of earth burns bright with red, hot energy. Never a traitor, grace is more of a calm, steady witness and companion to me in my daily rituals, prayers, and activities. It is the key to the unraveling of mystery and comforting in being a reminder to me that I never have to go it alone.

Grace is there, recognized or not.

So Much Hope

Each day, a new beginning. Today is November 3, 2020 — Election Day — and there is no evidence that we, as citizens of the United States of America, are united on much of anything at all except…

We are united in HOPE for a change for the better. Yet we are extremely divided in whether that hope requires a change in political party in charge or not. I and my trusted, valued, and precious family and friends may all see the path to this hope fulfilled as requiring differing approaches.

So much is broken. The way we speak. The way we act. What motivates us. We are aware. We know. There are answers right in front of us. Common human decency and trust need rekindling.

Today, I await the American voice for our country and its people. The values I hold and serve do not change, regardless of political party leanings. I will work with what is — I will live and work in the part of the world that is mine to influence. I will pray that we hold together as a people, realizing the goodness and gifts that are mine, and sharing whatever I can, where ever I see the need.

Today I am dedicated to building up, not tearing down. I have so much hope because I keep company with so many dear ones dedicated to the same.

Add Some Magic Today!

This image came up as a memory on my Facebook Feed. It is a good theme for today. I am into small magic today…

I finally “sat” for a gratifying and renewing pedicure, after procrastinating for way too long, not wanting to spend the time. The new color, which lasts a long time, seems the slightest part of the process for me. I love the combined leg massage and foot reflexology that comes with it. Reflexology is a holistic wellness tool I employed for a long time in my life, and even had some effect on the disappearance of a brain tumor quite some time ago.

Now, maybe I will resume it and find some money in the kitty for occasional therapist Reflexology in 2021. So my new colorful and “tamed” toe nails are enjoying small magic today.

I located a missing mailing of JOURNEY GIRL today to add to the magic. Yea team.

I enjoyed our yard border tree line changing of colors in the 75 degree fall breeze and the magical flight of leaves swirling and dancing to the ground.

A grateful heart is never small magic. It’s the best magic. And I have that today for myself and others. A calm ending to a Friday afternoon. A darkening afternoon — and here comes the thunder! It’s magic!!

The words of Henri J. M. Nouwen from “The Only Necessary Thing.” I have read Nouwen deeply and particularly loved his journals through his life of service to others.

“The prayer of the heart…is indeed like a murmuring stream that continues underneath the many waves of every day and opens the possibility of living in the world without being of it and of reaching out to our God from the center of our solitude.”

” … prayer has become the active presence of God’s Spirit guiding me through life.

To pray, I think, does not mean to think about God in contrast to thinking about other things, or to spend time with God instead of spending time with other people. Rather, it means to think and live in the presence of God.

We pray unceasing when all our thoughts — beautiful or ugly, high or low, proud or shameful, sorrowful or joyful — can be thought in the presence of God. “

Napkinwriter Note: AND we are always in the presence of God.

Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.

Amy and I played “fashion” so many times when we were together.

There is a scripture passage that tells us to “Put on our garment of love.”

I thought about that today while I was waiting for the completion of Tom’s latest MOHS skin operation. If I thought about my garments for the day, being garments of love, would I remember to bring that into my activities of the day.

I think I would.

Grandson Andrew in his high school band uniform. I LOVED that garment and his performances.

Now he is in his fourth year at Central Michigan University and marching in the drum line for the Marching Chippewas. These performances are exciting and even though I am a big football fan, I am definitely there for the B A N D. So many fun times, all filled with love.

My big brother Dave has passed on now. I love one of these last photos of us together and can still feel his love through his soft garment plaid shirt.

Dinner table celebration of Laura and Carl’s 25th Wedding Anniversary

Last Saturday night, Tom’s and my time with Laura, Carl, and Amy was a celebration we all put garments of love on for. The remarkable story of 25 years of love lived in family life and extended family life. The only way it could have been more loving is if we could have had the love of the Warriner family with us.

We are hoping they will be here for Thanksgiving!

So we are faithful to our garments of love — no matter the occasion. Love comes through them from our family heart and soul.

Our beginning love garments.
Baptized in garment of love. Living our promise.

“Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony.” (Col 3:14)