Meaningful Monday: Pema Chödrön


photo by Lorraine

Wendy is too busy with all the wonderous changes in her life to present her usual Mindfulness Monday post at the moment. So, I am stepping in with a guest post for her.

I have always found great wisdom, humour and compassion in the words of  Pema Chödrön. She is member of/teacher at a Shambhala Buddist community – Gampo Abbey – in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia which gives her words a special resonance with me. My paternal roots, and extended chunks of my adult life were spent in the Maritimes. No better spot for meditation, retreat, and restoration. I just returned from the South Shore of Nova Scotia. My first visit “home” in 7 years; a truly transformative experience.

So in honour of Wendy and Nova Scotia, I present Meaningful Monday as a guest host for Wendy’s wonderful Mindfulness Mondays. All quotes are from Pema Chödrön.


“When there’s a big disappointment, we don’t know if that’s the end of the story. It may be just the beginning of a great adventure.”

“Each moment is an opportunity to make a fresh start.”

“Every situation is a passing memory.”


#HAWMC Day 5 – What’s your favorite platform to get your voice heard?

Today is Day 5 of #HAWMC (WEGO’s Health Activist Writers Monthly Challenge).  The prompt today is:

Are you all about 180 characters or less? Do you enjoy shooting the perfect photo? Or perhaps love sharing posts on Facebook.What’s your favorite platform to get your voice heard and why?

social media (click here for photo origin)

Okay, I’m going to admit this is going to be a very short post for me.  My favorite platform to get my voice heard is my blog.  Here I can write it in 180 characters, but I don’t have to.  I can use as many characters as I like.  I can add a photo if I want, but I don’t have to.  I’m free to share my opinions along with facts.  Of course, I always tell if it is my opinion and not a fact.  (that doesn’t mean my opinions aren’t fact, often they are…so there.)  My blog is my preferred method to reach people.

I do have a Facebook Page that is relatively new.  I post a few more things on my Facebook Page than I do on my blog, but they aren’t detailed.  I’m starting to learn more about Twitter, but I admit I get a little lost on there.  I do attend some patient advocate chats on Twitter, they are very informative and supportive.  So you may see me on Twitter more often.  🙂

I don’t think I’ll ever be on Instagram or any place where I’m supposed to post photos, I’m simply not comfortable snapping photos all the time, especially of me.  And I must admit…. hubby would make fun of me.

It’s not all about what I post on my blog or Facebook Page and Twitter accounts, it’s also about the places I visit.  The blogs I support,  the Facebook Pages I Like, the Facebook Groups I Follow, the Twitter accounts I follow…these are the places I show my support.  These are some of the places that hear my voice.  Look in your comment section, you just might see me there.

If you’d like to read more posts from today please check out WEGO’s Facebook page.  and don’t forget to check out Picnic With Ant’s Facebook Page too.  🙂  and you can find me on Twitter too.

*I accidentally hit publish on this post on November 4th, however, I should only have hit Save.  I hope everyone saw the completed post.


#HAWMC Day 2 – Blogging Process

Today is day 2 in the #HAWMC.  (Health Activist Writers Month Challenge)  If you’d like to read more blog posts about this please check out WEGO’s Facebook Page.  And don’t forget to Like my Facebook Page – Picnic With Ants.


My blogging process is a bit different as I change it up a bit.  For some posts I just shoot from the hip; I write what comes to mind and hit Publish before I change my mind.  🙂  Other posts I do a lot of research so it takes time to develop those post, they can take days to write.  Still others I write in advance.  I know I am going to post them so I get them ready ahead of time and schedule them to come out.

I do try to edit my posts, unless I do a stream of conscious post, even though it may not seem like it sometimes.  Isn’t it funny how you can read the same thing over and over and it looks just right until after you hit Publish then you notice it has a lot of errors?  Really, I did read it over for errors, really I did!

Trying to decide what to blog about is the hardest thing for me.  I will sometimes come up with some great ideas and I get very excited to write.  Other times I’m stuck.  I have no idea what to write about.  I don’t want to always write about me and the newest things that may be going on with me and my illnesses, especially if nothing has changed in a while.  Having a chronic illness can mean that things just stay, well, chronic.  They may not progress at all.  Things are just the same.  It can be a challenge to come up with new topics to write about when you feel things are just the same.

I read a lot of blogs and I feel a lot are either all down in the dumps, or they are all sunshine and rainbows.  I want my blog to be somewhere in the middle.  I want people to come here and know that having an illness doesn’t mean you have to be sad about it all the time, but you also don’t have to be positive all the time.  Here is someplace in the middle.

Don’t get me wrong, here you will find the down and dirtiness of being ill, and you will also find good days and thoughts that may help you along the way.

Oh, I’m moving away from my process.  Well sometimes my process is to just sit back and talk to my readers, like I am right now.  You are, after all, who I write this blog for.  Well you and me.  🙂

It seems my blogging process is rather eclectic.


I’ve started so many blog posts and I haven’t gotten any posted.


Because something would happen, and the post would be out of date….of course most of you would not know about what happened, but I would have to go back and change everything.

and posts would get longer

and I’d have to catch up

and I’d get further behind

and I’d end up not writing.

SO, You know what?

I’m just going to write right now.  I’m just going to put something out here to get me going!!

and of course…..I’ve been having vertigo today…and here it comes again.

So this post is going to be very short.


I wrote something!!

It’s out here on the blogosphere…..however you may spell that….ha.

This month is Pain Awareness Month.

the 10th is Suicide Prevention Day

Next week is Balance Awareness Week.

Wanted to put a shout out to all of those….just in case I don’t get anything else done.

Hopefully I will!!

I will be writing more.

you may get posts that seem like they are half a post….and maybe they are, but I need to write and get it out, so I’m going to put out what I can write.  I hope you understand it all.

Here’s a little picture of a flower I “painted” on an app called ArtRage on my phone.  I’ve never done anything like this before.

It was fun….and a little hard.

by w. holcombe do not copy without permission
by w. holcombe
Please do not copy without permission

The name of my blog doesn't fit.

I’ve been thinking and I just don’t think the name of my blog fits.  When I started it I thought I was going to be able to make more strides toward a healthier me in a shorter amount of time, but things are moving pretty slowly.  That’s ok, I know I will be making strides, but I don’t feel like my blog is just about that.  I want it be more about me.  Not just my health issues.  I want to talk about my love of cooking, my art, being environmentally conscious, working on becoming Foster Parents…..

So I need your help.  I need some ideas to rename my blog.  So far I have:

  • Determined Lady
  • Wendy’s Musings
  • My Unexpected Life
  • My Life: The Adventure

I’m leaning toward My Unexpected Life, Stuart voted for that one too.

I did check to make sure these were not already blog names, but now WordPress says My Unexpected Life is unavailable.

The rest of the suggestions are available.  I’m disappointed though, I liked My Unexpected Life.  I felt like that summed my life up pretty well.

What do you think?

Do you have any other suggestions?  (suggestions are very welcome)

Thanks for sticking with me.

WordPress is driving me crazy!

My last post took me 3 days to complete because I could not get it formatted correctly.  It still won’t do what I’ve asked it to, but I just gave up.

If you look at that post you can tell where there should be line breaks and there isn’t.  I kept putting them in there, but every time I would save it and publish the post they were gone.

I also tried to put the title of each recipe in a color so you could see them easier…but no it wouldn’t have any of that either.  At one point it completed unformatted the whole post and took away all the links.

My old blog is with Blogger, I changed to WordPress because you can leave your email address on a post and no one will see it except the administrator.  This is very nice, especially if you ever do any giveaways.

I also like how they keep up with the stats of how many times a page is read and such things like that.

Those are the only 2 things I’ve found that I like about WordPress over Blogger.

Anyone else out there have this much trouble with WordPress?