Monthly Archives: March 2013

* DRAGONFLIES AND THE GREAT BLUE HERON by James Osborne

For more than a decade, Great Blue Herons had a special meaning for Brad and Cindy. During those years, Brad had no hint this special meaning would one day acquire a much deeper significance.

The couple enjoyed watching the graceful herons at their summer cottage feed one hundred feet away, drawn by schools of minnows in a bay below their deck.

Brad and Cindy also saw the birds feed in a cove where they often anchored their boat overnight.Blue herons became their favorite bird. To celebrate their 30th wedding anniversary they commissioned a watercolor of a pair of blue heron.

Blue Heron

Watercolor of a pair of Blue Herons, commissioned by Brad and Cindy for their 30th wedding anniversary

The years slipped by, as they will.  Those thirty years edged toward thirty-five. Their prized painting hadn’t been framed.  One day, Brad sneaked it out and got it framed. On the night of their 35th anniversary, as they prepared to turn in, there was the framed painting above their bed, where Brad had just finished hanging it minutes earlier.

Three years later, Cindy lost her battle with cancer.  And Brad, well . . . was lost, too.

At Cindy’s memorial service, her  dear friend, Ellen led the service. She wanted to help Cindy’s young grandchildren comprehend what had occurred. Here is the story she told:

Once upon a time, a happy group of tiny bugs were playing on the bottom of a lily pond. One by one, the bugs climbed up a lily stem and disappeared. Those left behind wondered what had happened to their friends.  Then they agreed the next bug to venture beyond the surface of the pond would return and tell the others what they’d experienced.  

One day, a bug left and found itself on a lily pad. It fell asleep. When it awoke, the warm sunshine had dried its body. Instinctively, it spread the wings it had grown while asleep and began flying away. The bug had become a beautiful dragonfly with four resplendent wings. Then it remembered the promise. It swooped back toward the surface of the pond and headed downward. The dragonfly hit the surface and could go no farther. It was not able to return. Finally, it realized the others would just need to have faith that it was going to be all right.

dragonfly-Sonia

Original photo contributed by Sonia M. Smith

Before she passed away, Cindy had asked Brad to make two promises to her:

THIS STORY CONTINUES IN THE TALES2INSPIRE™

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EMERALD COLLECTION

Finalist award – 2013

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VERY PRECIOUS . . . LIFE IS A TENDER GIFT


LIFE IS A TENDER GIFT

Twin girls, Brielle and Kyrie, were born 12 weeks ahead of their due date. Needing intensive care, they were placed in separate incubators.

Kyrie began to gain weight and her health stabilized. But Brielle, born only 2 lbs, had trouble breathing, heart problems and other complications. She was not expected to live.Their nurse did everything she could to make Brielle¯s health  better, but nothing she did was helping her. With nothing else to do, their nurse went against hospital policy and decided to place both  babies in the same incubator. She left the twin girls to sleep and when when she returned she found a sight she could not believe. She called all the nurses and  doctors and this is what they saw.

 As Brielle got closer to her sister, Kyrie put her small little arm around her, as if to hug and support her sister. From that moment on, Brielle¯s breathing and heart rate stabilized and her health became normal.

 She asked me to share this picture to show the world how a little bit of tender love and affection can save someone’s life.

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My friend, Natalie asked me if I would share this tender little story with my friends. And so, I am sharing it with all of you. If it touches you, please pass it along to  a few of your Facebook friends, tell them about my new author page and ask them if they would LIKE it too. And everyone, both on and off Facebook, can FOLLOW this blog. by clicking on the word ‘FOLLOW’ in the upper left corner of this screen.

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NO MORE FACEBOOK GROUPS – Just One Central Place For All Of Us

NO MORE FACEBOOK GROUPS – Just One Central Place Where We

Can Interact, Share and Communicate

I am closing down my Facebook groups in 2 weeks, with all future postings going to one place: my new author page at http://www.facebook.com/tales2inspire. I’m consolidate to bring us all together (lovers of inspiring stories and those with a special interest in Aesthetics and beauty) – for better communication and interaction, for less splintering and confusion.

I don’t want to lose you as a friend, so please take a moment to click on this link and give the page a LIKE.

If you are a reader of inspiring stories, don’t miss AS I AM, one of the beautiful ‘tales’ entered into my Tales2Inspire 2013 collection, and MIRACLE, another one I will be highlighting this week. If your interest lies in aesthetics and physical beauty, don’t miss Lillian Shah’s  thought provoking article, Yes, We Do Notice When You Make a Change – Either Large or Small or Dr. Rucker’s article about Dark Under Eye Circles.

CLICK

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* THE FLOWERS – by Cheryl Stewart

She was a beautiful woman who left her home state of Washington to move to Alaska. She and her husband had a dream of moving north. They packed up their belongings and drove to this territory of the United States. Alaska was not yet a state and they settled in the small town of Anchorage.  She was a woman with a pioneer spirit, but never left her house without her signature Coco Chanel red lipstick.  This woman whom I speak of was model perfect in every sense of the word. She even appeared on TV every Wednesday afternoon for a local show called “The Women’s Touch”.

This woman was my mother.

Even though she was a stay home mom, she was the busiest person I ever knew. She loved her newly founded state and became a socialite and was involved in multiple committees that ranged from the PTA, local causes, and church functions. Once we children had left home, she volunteered once a week at the Anchorage Visitor’s Center. The Visitor’s Center is a log cabin originally built in 1955, complete with a grass-tundra covered roof. It used to be one the original houses of an earlier time, and now stands in the middle of the financial district of downtown Anchorage. It is a landmark building

Loreane Rose’s philanthropy won her the Mayor’s Moose Award, 2003 Log Cabin Volunteer of The Year

Every Thursday while walking to the center, she passed a Native Alaskan homeless woman sitting on a park bench asking for money. My mother never gave her money, knowing all too well where the cash would be spent. Instead she brought her coffee in the morning and soup or a sandwich in the afternoon. My mother was curious about this person and her story, and started arriving downtown earlier. She sat with her to get to know her.

This homeless street person was initially intimated by her questions, but my mother eventually made her feel at ease.

When asked her name, the native lady replied “Violet”. With her signature smile, my mother responded that her name was Loraene Rose. Without skipping a beat, she told her that they already had something in common. Both of their mother’s decided to name their daughters after their favorite flower. A friendship had blossomed.

Over the summer, they got to know each other better. Violet was an Inuit lady from Western Alaska in a small village on the Kuskokwim River Delta. She revealed her difficult life and that she had a daughter.  For some undisclosed reason, she had left her village and her daughter as well. The last time she had seen her daughter, she was 13 years old. My mother listened to her story, and then shared her own.  Loraene Rose had lost her mother to cancer when she was 13 years of age and didn’t have a second chance of ever seeing her again. Violet still had the opportunity of providing her daughter with that second chance. Not unlike most Native Americans, they have a predisposed affliction to alcohol. Once experienced, difficult to stop. Violet missed her daughter, but knew her daughter was ashamed of her. She redirected her shame and blame, and became helpful with other street living native people in Anchorage. She was the matriarch of the fallen natives. Autumn came and the weather began to change. In Alaska, weather changes without hesitation or anyone’s permission.

Inuit Family

It was a particular cold morning and my mother had purchased Violet a new hat and gloves. When she turned the corner onto 5th Ave, approaching The Visitor’s Center, to bring Violet her coffee and gifts, something was missing. The park bench was empty. Violet was not there.

It was not uncommon that street people froze to death during a cold night. My mother quickly ran to The Visitor’s Center and started making phone calls to the local missions and hospitals. Her colleagues stopped her and said, “Violet was here earlier and left you something.”

This story continues in the Tales2Inspire

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Lois

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