Risky imagination.

by Jan on January 6, 2012

“What you risk reveals what you value.”
~ Jeanette Winterson

Imagine the shiny glassed side of a sky scraper becoming a dance floor…
Or the majestic cliffs of Yosemite as the back drop for exquisite choreography….
Imagine a dancer who didn’t have to worry about gravity….

All you have to do is imagine it.
And it can happen.
And that’s what Bandaloop did.

Bandaloop, a modern dance group, has been performing dances on skyscrapers and or cliffs all over the world. Secured with belts and wires, they appear to be weightless (and fearless) giving them a freedom of movement that almost seems like flying — with no limits in height or space. What we’re left with is the shear beauty of the dance. Watching them is awe inspiring and shifts our perception of things and what even seems possible.

Does risk does equal change?

Sometimes we don’t act because we are afraid. We think, sometimes, that those who do act are unafraid, and we wait for that moment when we will be fear-less. But that is an illusion. When we can imagine a good outcome it gives us the courage to act in the face of fear. It calls upon a part of us that doesn’t have fear, we call that part HOPE. Hope is the part that says, “Why not?!”

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An invitation to hope

by Jan on January 2, 2012

Extra! Extra! Changes Coming!

Change is an invitation to open up … it provides us with opportunities including the opportunity to heal, to grow, and to evolve.” ~ Mitchell May

When I looked up the definition of “invitation” I saw that it has two parts: as an incentive and as a provocation. Hope is both of these things. Hope brings rewards, it adds delight and sweetness. It is alluring and attractive. It also has another side, as the inciter of change, the line in the sand, the provocateur. With the idea that there is something better available, one of hope’s roles is to question the status quo, to rebel, to resist. Our mantra in the coming year: Hope is not for wimps!

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It is in your hands now, and always.

by Jan on December 30, 2011

Every day is a new beginning. Treat it that way. Stay away from what might have been, and look at what can be. ~ Marsha Petrie Sue (author)

A Portal to the New Year

One way to look at the promise and possibility of the New Year is to think about it is as the ancients did—in particular the Romans—as a portal or gate to the future.

It was Janus, the Roman two-headed god (after whom January was later named) who looked in two directions, to the past and to the future. He represents both the year past and the new-year, the old way of being and the transition into a new beginning — and that has carried through in many religious and cultural beliefs.

I resonate with the Janus image. I have lived my life often looking back to the past and forward to the future — but not as often being present in the moment. Janus sees things differently because he has a different view. Sometimes by looking in two directions we can gain a new perspective of what is really going on in the moment (and sometimes it distracts us from what is really going on in the moment).

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Get lost?!

by Jan on December 26, 2011

This turtle is determined! He is a symbol of the will to survive and to keep on going even when you don’t know where you’re going!

What is obvious at the end of of this video is that much was done to prove that saving a life, of even a sea turtle, is to act nobly: with hope and imagination, ingenuity and unhesitating resolve to rise above the everyday; even when it seems unreasonable (crazy). It is noble and hopeful to aspire to greater things.

Here is the story.

“Johnny Vasco de Gama,” a very rare sea turtle, with a very fancy name, was lost most of his life, but he has now “found” his way home — thanks to a group of committed rescuers.

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Lighten up!

by Jan on December 21, 2011

To be a star, you must shine your own light, follow your own path, and don’t worry about darkness, for that is when the stars shine brightest.” ~ unknown

Sunset from Space

Sunset from space.

Everywhere in the world there is darkness and light, night and day, forever linked. When one is warmest, the other is coldest.

Where we are seeing the shortest day of the year about to become longer, the return into light, other people are celebrating the longest day, and the inevitable return into darkness.

It is all cyclical. We are all part of nature. As the world turns, so do we.

In a conversation with Katrina (a member of Hope on Hope’s team) about darkness and light — and hope, I found out that the solstice is a very special time for her. She resonates with this holiday both metaphorically and in a very personal sense as well. So, I asked her to write about it. Thank you, Katrina, you did great!

Here’s what she has to say Read the rest of this entry »

Happy Holidays

by Jan on December 16, 2011

Happy Holidays

Home run!

by Jan on December 12, 2011

Clyde and Jan

Clyde and Jan at the new Twins Stadium. Image courtesy of Kris Cooley

I am living the dream,” says Clyde Doepner.

And it all started with a “thank you.”

Clyde is a husband, father, grandfather, retired coach and teacher, and now he is the only full time curator of memorabilia for any team in baseball–his beloved Minnesota Twins.

From the time he was a small boy, playing baseball was all Clyde ever wanted to do. He won a baseball scholarship to college and played until a shoulder injury in his sophomore year forced him to stop pitching. Needing to change gears, he decided to study what he loved almost as much as baseball–history. He stayed with baseball as a coach during his time teaching high school history.

His passion for baseball, history, collecting, and his practice of saying thank you for even small things brought him to his dream job.

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A proper welcome.

by Jan on December 9, 2011

I think it’s about time that I put aside my keyboard for a minute and start a conversation with you face-to-face.  Here goes. . .

A Smile. It’s contagious!

by Jan on December 2, 2011

Jive Aces: Bring Me Sunshine

Its funny how life works. It is often something of a self-fulfilling prophecy. We get back what we put out. If you put out positive thoughts and a hopeful attitude, then all of a sudden the world looks a whole lot better, and actions, possibilities start to open up differently than if you go along with the prevailing negative attitude.

Sometimes we get caught up in perpetuating the gloom and doom that seems pervasive but this fun video reminds us that we can break it up. Happiness is contagious and a smile can break up a dreary day.

It is all about attitude – choosing in the moment happiness over gloom.

The video reminds me of Richard Brodie’s book Virus of the Mind, about “memes” an evolution in our brains that replicates ideas. Wikipedia defines a meme as:

“an idea, behaviour or style that spreads from person to person within a culture.” A meme acts as a unit for carrying cultural ideas, symbols or practices, which can be transmitted from one mind to another through writing, speech, gestures, rituals or other imitable phenomena.

The downside of this is that these ideas can spread like a virus. Some of these ideas may not be very helpful.

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Small kindnesses

by Jan on December 1, 2011

Busy city street

Never go to sleep without knowing that you have done something to create a better world.

Long before he was famous, Harry Belafonte’s mother said these words to him. These wise words came from her desire for him to contribute to our society. They became a guiding principle for his actions and have motivated him all of his life. He has practiced this every day–all in the cause of social justice.

But that seems a really tall order for most of us mortals. Just the idea of all that responsibility seems exhausting. Where do we start, and how do we find the time?

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