Chasing Inspiration

Friday, January 29, 2010

Soundtrack Friday

There are songs that speak to us in the moment and songs that speak to us over time. Today's song is one of the later. I first saw this video not long after I was first married and and the melancholy urgency of the song was exactly what I was feeling at the time. No, my marriage wasn't awful - it was and is a wonderful thing. That said, I just moved away from everything I knew to a country that was thousands of miles from my family and where the only person I could call friend and confidante was my husband. I wasn't working because I was going through the immigration process so I had a lot of time on my hands. My dog and I became best of friends and music and books became my emotional support.

I heard this song on the radio recently and I felt the same melancholy urgency but for different reasons. I no longer feel like a stranger in a strange land. What I'm struck by are the words of the song. There's an unconditional love through the words and I'm so glad I had that when I needed it most and when I wanted it least.

As we enter the new year, this song is a reminder to me to aspire to unconditional, non-judgmental love and acceptance. This doesn't mean there won't be tension or disagreements or fights. I'm not perfect. But I can aspire to be unconditional in my relationships despite my humanity. Ain't life grand that way?

Today I give you The Pretenders and their 1994 hit I'll Stand By You.


Tuesday, January 26, 2010

My A-Team

I unintentionally took most of January off from blogging. It's a new year and the start of a new decade and I wanted to think about my directions and intentions for 2010. It wasn't my goal to be silent on the blog front during this time. If you missed me and wondered what I've been up to, I apologize for the radio silence.

Starting this week I'm back! I have some ideas for blog topics and how I can keep moving with some of the projects and topics I already have. I also have some ideas for organizing the look of my blog and sharing more information about my coaching and my writing. I hope to make some posts a little more interactive and encourage you to participate!

One thing that I was reminded of during my radio silence is my propensity to over commit. I blogged about this back in December. My husband was very amused with the post since he's been telling me for years that I over commit. The pendulum swung back the other way in December and I didn't commit to much of anything. It was a nice vacation from commitments, one I really needed. Now that I'm rested and focused I want to be sure I don't jump back in with both feet and make more agreements than is humanly possible for me to deliver.

To assist me with balance I have started to create my own A-Team; which is more oversight committee than guns for hire. You'll have to trust me on this. *grin*

The members are people I love and trust. They understand the various interests and values that are meaningful to me, they know my strengths and they have insights into my weaknesses - because let's call it like it is, okay? We are "meeting" every other week for a short amount of time to discuss my time, projects and plans. I am accountable to them for my follow through. I can veto them in their suggestions though I have committed to hearing them out and weighing their collective feedback before making decisions. It's a small, select group. And they have my best interests at heart.

I personally think everyone needs support in order to make it through this life. While not everyone needs a committee to act as confidantes and sounding boards, I think everyone should have their own A-Team -- one or two people who you trust to hold your intentions and give you honest feedback.

Who is on your A-Team? How do you intend to utilize this gifted group of individuals to help you realize your potential in 2010?


Monday, January 04, 2010

Books Read In December

December was a slow reading month for me. Life was busy, work was busy and I felt more like hibernating than reading. Still, there were several quality reads this month. What a great way to end 2009!

As Shadows Fade by Colleen Gleason -- I was sad to come to the end of this 5 book journey with Victoria Gardella and her merry vampire hunters. And while the story arcs are now finished, there is the opportunity for further stories down the road. After all, not even Illa Gardella can vanquish all the vampires...right?

Kindred in Death by J. D. Robb -- There has yet to be an In Death book I don't enjoy. Kindred in Death was a great story that subtly propels the series forward while giving the reader a satisfying story with a a compelling plot and beloved characters. And the body count was just right. LOL

Succubus on Top by Richelle Mead -- Richelle Mead amazed me. She developed a unique world within the urban fantasy genre and gave us a succubus with a conscience. We were first introduced to Georgina in Succubus Blues and the story continues in Succubus on Top. Some of the layers of this unique world within Seattle, WA are being revealed and I cannot wait to pick up the third book in this series!

Succubus Dreams by Richelle Mead -- Book three of the Georgina Kincaid series. The series still has wonderful wit and quirky humor but the tones are starting to turn darker. Things are getting more complicated for the succubus - both in her love life and in her immortal life - and there are some interesting twists and turns. I'm really enjoying this series and am so happy book 4 is currently in print.

One What Grounds by Cleo Coyle -- I wanted to read a mystery and after reading about Cleo Coyle on Marjorie M. Liu's blog I decided to give the Coffee House Mystery series a try. I'm so glad! The book was well written with engaging characters, a unique location and a great plot. If you are a fan of cosy mysteries and coffee, this series is for you!

The Ghost & Mrs. McClure by Alice Kimberly -- I enjoyed the Coffee House Mystery book so much I wanted to know what else she wrote. Under pen name Alice Kimberly she writes the Haunted Bookshop series. A 1940's gumshoe haunts the bookstore of widow Penelope McClure. And only Pen can see him! The first book was off to a slow start but got much better as the story went along. I will definitely read book 2!

Blaze of Memory by Nalini Singh -- Book 7 or 8 of Nalini's Psy/Changling series takes a closer look at the Forgotten, members of the Psy community whose ancestors broke away from the Psy during the implementation of Silence. Decades later some of the Forgotten are developing strong mental skills and are once again being hunted by the Psy. It's up to Dev, the leader of Shine, to protect his people. The conflict for this story centered around Dev and a left-for-dead Psy scientist whose mind has been broken by the Psy Council and may be a sleeper agent sent to destroy everything Dev has worked toward. This is a strong addition to the Psy/Changling paranormal romance series and opens the door to many future plots that I'm very excited to read about. Once Nalini writes them, that is. *grin*