Tuesday, February 22, 2011

practice love. be generous. be rewarded.

i wish i had a heart to send to each and every one of you who commented and entered into this unscheduled drawing.  however, even without them, you are all winners! i was touched by the stories shared, not only in the comments section, but in backchannel emails from those that just wanted to share them.  debi mazar once said: "a hero is somebody who is selfless, who is generous in spirit, who just tries to give back as much as possible and help people." you are all heroes in my book!

i took all of your names and put them in the choosing jar...

closed my eyes, felt around, and selected a slip of paper...

and here is what i found when i opened my eyes again...

debi from the pacific northwest! you are the winner of the woven heart cloth!

here's what debi wrote in her comment:

"Mornin Joe! Thank you for coming over to my place for a visit, and your comment on my Tango Cat! She's further along right now and if I ever get a break from homework I'll finish her and post it on my lonely blog. I have so much to say on there... and it's been so neglected."

"It's funny, on Valentines Day I decided to smile and greet anyone I made eye contact with on the college campus. Wow, I was absolutely AMAZED at the result! So many people struck up a brief conversation with me. One girl looked so happy and radiant when she went on to class and she must have turned around half a dozen times to tell me how much she enjoyed talking to me. It was the same result several times as the day went on. It felt so good that I've been doing it all week. There are a LOT of lonely, sad students on campus with me. Sometimes it's just too easy to plow through your day going from one thing to the next, and you miss so much by not taking the time to connect to the people around you. Anyway, I hope I win your heart...my birthday is the 23rd! It would make a lovely birthday present!"

what a wonderful experience, debi!  i have found similar experiences when i've just smiled at people, too.  it's amazing, isn't it? i think it is all too frequently for any of us to plow through your days, not being present, and missing life that is right there before our eyes! it's amazing how we tap into our compassionate heart when we just decide to be present and acknowledge those around us in a respect full and loving manner!

debi, you have a big heart and a depth of soul! and now you have my woven heart small cloth!  happy birthday!!  i'll drop you an email so you can send me your mailing address and i'll get it in the mail immediately!

for the rest of you, gentle readers, you are indeed amazing people and i am honored to have "met" you.



  1. Congratulations Debi! and Happy Birthday! Thank you, Joe for making us pause and think about bringing joy to others. I hope we all continue this throughout the year. Now, get some rest!

  2. I am so happy for Deb. She has a kind spirit. I love the circle of artist
    I have met through blogging. I can truly say they are a generous and
    warm spirited group of people filled with "heart". <3

  3. Oh, yes, what a wonderful way Debi found to celebrate Valentine's day. A very worthy winner.

  4. Great story from Debi- congratulations on winning the heart!

    It reminded me of a great reflection my mother gave me when I was a child. I think because I am and always have been curious about people, and their stories, I have always naturally made eye contact and smiled when passing someone. I did so one day in the parking lot of a grocery store. An elderly woman was walking by and I, no more than 10 probably, smiled and said hello to her. Nothing special happened. As my mother and I walked a bit beyond the old woman, my mother said to me that I had made that woman's day. I looked at her inquisitively and she said that, truly, something as gentle and humble as a smile and a hello could gift someone immensely. From then on, I had renewed enthusiasm for something I was already practicing, (and maybe not even being aware of it) and have been ever since. It really can be very powerful to reach out in large and small ways.

    And, as Debi says, I also see many struggling students on campus. Sometimes I just want to grab them and bring them into my room for a cup of tea and a hug... don't do it, though, I hope that I do that in another way in my classes....

    Love it- my word verification word is "senses"... seems right.

  5. Congrats Debi! That is a beautiful story, and Happy Birthday!
    Joe, this is a lovely heart and a lovely post.
    I watched a movie last night about this very subject. 'A Single Man" I thought the story was about a gay man who loses his partner, but it really was about a man who learns to really see the things in front of him and to live in the moment. I have been thinking about it since last night and now this post has reminded me. Thank you.

  6. The perfect winner...happy birthday Debi.