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Barbara’s Movie

1 Dec

A movie I made when I was a student in 2003…finally uploaded it :)

Happy 97th birthday to my granny :)

30 May

Happy 97th birthday to my granny :) you look great!!!
Am all dolled up for you along with Isabella :) see you soon…

Happy Mother’s Day – wherever you are…

9 May

“Before you were conceived, she wanted you. Before you were born, she loved you. When you were born, she saw your face and knew she was in love. Before you were an hour old, she knew she would die for you. To this day, she would still.” Happy Mother’s Day… :)

Thanks to Meniek for your beautiful quote which I am going to add up here..hope you don’t mind! xx

“Mother love is the fuel that enables a normal human being to do the impossible.” ~Marion C. Garretty, quoted in A Little Spoonful of Chicken Soup for the Mother’s Soul.

Nat King Cole puts it the best! ;-)

On left pic – this was taken on the day I had her – on the right pic – this is me 2 wks later!

Since I am now a mammy for the second time – here is a heart for my daughter Isabella below :-) RIP to Jasmine – you are not forgotten either…and never will be…

Baby Isabella

9 Apr

Readers of my blog…have been offline and recently gave birth to a healthy baby girl! Isabella…6 pounds 11 ounces on 1 April 2010…so yes delighted it all worked out in the end so in case you have not seen any posts from me for quite a while this is why…she was totally worth it! :-) have a nice day…B

Homer Every Day

2 Mar

This is absolutely brilliant! Shows us all how time really does fly…
I think the Simpsons may have got their original inspiration from
his video here click here

For Simpsons vid click on title below:

Homer Every Day from Noah K. on Vimeo.

Here is my video for Rosa and Ju on this application – click here :-)

Jesse & Joy – music video called Chocolate :-) love how they did this too..

Jesse & Joy- “Chocolate” from Carlos Lopez Estrada on Vimeo.

Get rated

21 Feb

Hello my lovely blog readers, I stumbled onto this website which is promoting the new release of the movie ‘She’s out of my league’ which I think is out on March 12 and well lol I would like to be out of your league ho ho ho…so feel free to ‘digg’ my pic and boost my rating. I got a ‘7’ but that is okay-I guess the more laid back your answers are – gives you less marks ha ha…anyway I wouldn’t mind giving you a ‘thank you’ wave if my face happens to even get a tiny chance of being up on the NY billboards :-) Just Barbara could be your icon..will leave it up to you… if you want the link just click here or on the pic below…Have a nice day! I don’t mind if you want to give me a 12… and make me over the 10 rating ;-) Who knows 7 is supposed to be a lucky number – isn’t it…maybe I do stand a chance after all! save the Barbara – get her up there ha ha.B


How to deal with our emotions

7 Feb

Its been quite a while since I wrote an article about relationships or anything in general etc. Instead this time, I want to write a more generalised piece if I may. This is about how we can deal with our emotions that can arise on a daily basis and what strategies we can use to feel better sometimes as the case may be. As you know some days are better then others etc. So then, what sort of things arise when our emotions kick in? Well first of all – it depends on the circumstances of the situation but everything that we as humans feel can be sourced back to our heads and how we deal with the perception of issues over time.

Our Mind Is the Source of Happiness and Suffering

Some of what I am going to say can closely relate to meditation and teaching ideas that are often seen and filtered out through Buddhism so apologies if what I say overlaps with some of their thinking and or teachings. So, how can we work with emotions effectively? – how can we subdue disturbing emotions and enhance positive ones??

1. Each of us wants to be happy and to avoid suffering.

From a Buddhist viewpoint, they believe that our mind – specifically its attitudes, views, and emotions – are the primary factors contributing to our experience of happiness and pain.

This view flies in the face of our usual perception of things. For example, most of us instinctively feel that happiness is “out there” to be had in an external person, place, or object. Its ours for the making so to speak. We think, “If I only lived in this house…had this career…married that person…moved to that place…bought this car, I’d be happy.” We are taught to be good consumers – not just of possessions, but of people, ideas, spirituality, and everything else as well – in our search and quest for happiness. However, no matter what we have or how much we have, we are perpetually dissatisfied. How come?

Similarly, we feel that our problems have been thrust upon us from outside forces. “I have difficulties with family, my boss might be inconsistent, my children don’t listen to me, the government is corrupt, others are selfish.” And this list can go on and on…you get the point… its all circumstantial.

Thus we devise wonderful advice for others to follow and believe that if they only did what we suggested, not only would our problems cease, but also the world would be a better place. Its true that we often need this encouragement and solution at the best of times as when all of us have no hope left in our souls and hearts, people perish…its only a matter of time..

Unfortunately, when we tell other people how they should change so that we can be happy, they don’t appreciate our sagious advice and instead tell us to mind our own business! or to get lost etc.. well some do and some don’t…it depends on the person’s mood and outlook at that given moment in time.

This innate world view that happiness and suffering come from external sources leads us to believe that if we could only make others and the world be what we wanted them to be, then we would be happy.

Thus, we endeavour to rearrange the world and the people in it, gathering towards us those we consider happiness-producing and struggling to be free from those we think cause pain. Although we have tried to do this, no one has succeeded in making the external environment exactly what he or she wants it to be. Even in those occasional situations in which we are able to arrange external people and things to be what we want, they don’t remain that way for long. Or, they aren’t as good as we thought they would be and we are left feeling disappointed and often disillusioned. In effect, the supposed path to happiness through external things and people is doomed from the start because no matter how powerful, wealthy, popular, or respected someone is, he or she is unable to control all external conditions.

This supposed path to happiness is also doomed because even if we could control external factors, we still would not be fulfilled and satisfied. Why? Because the source of true happiness lies in our mind and heart, not in possessions, others’ actions, praise, reputation, and so forth. But we must examine this for ourselves and observe our own experiences by taking a momentary step back from any situation we are presented with in order to see what causes happiness and what causes misery. Once we have established this…it is much easier then for us to deal with it effectively.

For example, we have all had the experience of waking up on the wrong side of the bed. Nothing in particular happened YET it might have caused us to be in a bad mood; we simply feel lousy. But, interestingly, just on those days we feel grumpy, we can stumble onto and encounter so many un-cooperative and rude people. I name no names. Just on the day we want to be left alone, some strange person who you may not even know might have a go at you and suddenly descend upon us even when you have said something totally banal and normal! Maybe it is worse then that, maybe the way our spouse smiles appears sarcastic TO YOU, and our colleague’s “Good morning” seems manipulative. Thankfully I can’t say that for myself but am just talking in general here. Even our pet can have an off day too..where you think they no longer seem to love us! but that is just YOUR perception and may not actually be the reality. When our boss remarks on our work, we can either take offense or look at it as enlightened criticism. When our friend reminds us to do something, we can sometimes accuse them of being controlling when in fact their intentions can be well-meaning. When someone turns in front of us on the road, it feels they might be deliberately provoking us when in fact they may have just simply been careless – who knows..

On the other hand, when we are in a good mood, even if our colleague gives us some negative criticism on a project, we can put it in perspective and sometimes do better work as a result. When our professor asks us to re-do a paper because he disagrees with your point of view, we seek to try to understand his/her reasons for putting it down and then similarly make a case to show what you feel they are missing. When a friend tells us that he was offended by our words, we calmly try to explain ourselves and clear up the misunderstanding before it gets ugly!

In essence therefore we could say that:

our interpretations of events and responses to them change according to our mood says something important, doesn’t it?

It indicates that we are not innocent people experiencing an objectively real external world. Rather, our moods, perspectives, and views play a role in our experiences. The environment and the people in it aren’t objective entities that exist from their own side as this or that. Instead, together with them, our mind co-creates our experiences. Thus, if we want to be happy and to avoid suffering, we need to subdue our unrealistic and non-beneficial emotions and perspectives IN ORDER to enhance our positive ones.

Working with our Emotions goes even further then that…lets dig a little deeper here.

As you know our emotions vary so here is list of different emotions and their counterparts – food for thought.

1. Reflection on impermanence and the unpleasant aspect of a person or thing counteracts attachment.

2. Cultivating patience and love opposes anger, and wisdom demolishes ignorance.

3. Thinking about a difficult topic or reflecting that all we know and have comes from others eliminates pride.

4. Rejoicing prevents jealousy.

5. Following the breath diminishes doubt.

6. Contemplating our precious human life dispels depression – think about it!!

7. Meditating on compassion counteracts low self-esteem (this is a Buddha idea)

8. Reflection on Impermanence and Unpleasant Aspects Counteracts Attachment

So having said all that, what happens next:

When our mind is under the influence of attachment, we cling to people, things, or circumstances, thinking that they have the EVENTUAL power to bring us happiness.

However, since these things are transient – their very nature is to change moment by moment – they are not safe objects to rely on for long term happiness.

When we remember that our possessions do not last forever and our money does not go on to the next life with us, then the false expectations we project upon them evaporate, and we are able to cultivate a healthy relationship with them. If we contemplate that we cannot always remain with our friends and relatives, we will appreciate them MUCH more while we are together and be more accepting of our eventual separation.

Example 1
Contemplating the unpleasant aspect of things we are attached to also cuts false expectation and enables us to have a more balanced attitude towards them. For example, when we have a car, we will definitely have car trouble. Therefore, no benefit comes from getting too excited about having a new car, and no great catastrophe has occurred if we can’t get a car.

Example 2
If we have a relationship, we will undoubtedly have relationship problems. When we first fall in love, we believe that the other person will be everything we want. This skewed view sets us up for suffering when we realize that he or she isn’t. In fact, no one can be everything we want because we are not consistent in what we want! This simple process of being more realistic cuts attachment, enabling us to actually have more enjoyment. Its really a balancing act between the two..like the juggler in the circus.


Cultivating Patience and Love Opposes Anger

Having exaggerated certain negative aspects of a person, thing, idea, or place, we become angry and unable to bear it. We want either to harm or defend our territory like an animal gone to war as what we think THEY ARE the element that is causing our unhappiness or we wish to escape from it (fight of flight).

Patience is the ability to bear harm or suffering. With it, our mind is calm, and we have the mental clarity to figure out a reasonable solution to the difficulty. One way to cultivate patience is by seeing the disturbing circumstance as an opportunity to grow as an individual. In this way, instead of focusing on what we don’t like, we look deep inside ourselves and develop our OWN resources, our own identity and talents to be able to deal and cope with it.

Seeing the situation from the others’ perspective also facilitates patience. We ask ourselves, “What are this person’s needs and concerns? How does he/she see this situation?” In addition, we can ask ourselves what our trigger buttons are. Sadly, we all have things that make us tick. Instead of blaming the other person for pushing our buttons, we can INSTEAD work to free ourselves from those buttons and sensitive points so that they cannot be pushed again. Its all too easy to blame the other person when in actual fact, we should be blaming our minds first and foremost for not looking at alternative solutions to the problem to begin with.

Cultivating love – the wish for sentient beings, including ourselves, to have happiness and its causes – prevents as well as counteracts anger.

We may wonder, “Why should we wish those who have harmed us to be happy? Take for example a break-up…where you wish your ex well with his/her life etc…YET you wonder at the same time why you were so nice…I guess its karma. Life is hard enough – its all about survival, they never said it was going to be easy but you are much more mature to wish someone well in the process… let’s wish others to be happy and thus free from whatever internal or external conditions precipitate their negative actions. One day, they might actually understand. Its all up to the individual.

We cannot tell ourselves we must love someone either; rather we must actively cultivate this emotion. For example, sitting quietly, we begin by thinking and then feeling, “May I be well and happy.” We spread this thought and feeling to dear ones, then to strangers, and to people we find disagreeable, threatening, or disgusting, and say again and again to ourselves “May they be well and happy.” Finally, we open our heart and wish happiness and its causes to all living beings everywhere. Why? because without any hope – we all perish over time.

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