Archive | November 2014

Random Inspiration #4 {Beauty}

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“You can be in love with one thousand views and skylines and souls and minds at once. Don’t apologize for your burn, your passion, or your enthusiasm. Enthusiasm propels the world.” ~ Victoria Erickson

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“We live in a wonderful world that is full of beauty, charm and adventure. There is no end to the adventures that we can have if only we seek them with our eyes open. ~Jawaharlal Nehru 

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“The echoes of beauty you’ve seen transpire, Resound through dying coals of a campfire.”~ Ernest Hemingway

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“She walks in beauty, 
Like the night of cloudless climes and starry skies; 
And all that’s best of dark and bright
Meet in her aspect and her eyes”
 ~Lord Byron 

“Even the handsomest men do not have the same momentary effect on the world as a truly beautiful woman does.” ~Jonathan Carroll

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“Beauty is an experience, nothing else. It is not a fixed pattern or an arrangement of features. It is something felt, a glow or a communicated sense of fineness.”~ D. H. Lawrence

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“Poetry lifts the veil from the hidden beauty of the world, and makes familiar objects be as if they were not familiar.”~Percy Bysshe Shelley 

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“The stars of midnight shall be dear 
To her; and she shall lean her ear 
In many a secret place 
Where rivulets dance their wayward round, 
And beauty born of murmuring sound Shall pass into her face. 
Three years she grew in Sun and Shower”
 ~William Wordsworth

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“A thing of beauty is a joy forever; 
Its loveliness increases; it will never 
Pass into nothingness.” ~John Keats

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“A soul that sees beauty may sometimes walk alone.”
~Johann von Goethe 

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“Beauty is eternity gazing at itself in a mirror. “~Kahlil Gibran

Wishing you much love, hope, & beauty…. ❤

Xoxo Kim ❤ 😀

My (somewhat recent) Dream {you can be greater than anything that can happen to you}

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As I posted here previously, I have vivid dreams that I frequently remember. Sometimes they’re inspirational.
My dreams aren’t usually bad, negative, or scary. They’re often strange. Bizarre beyond comprehension. And when not bizarre beyond belief, usually just quite ordinary like an extension of a normal day.  But I can often gather little parts of them, bizzare or not, that can be analyzed or interpreted. I like my dreams. They seem so real. And I love that I remember them so easily, I even remember dreams I had years ago.
My dreams are so profound and so intense, like I can experience my emotions in my dreams just as strongly as during my waking hours. 

I believe that dreams are usually just stuff we have been thinking about consciously or unconsciously whether it’s important or not so much. I think it’s often just our brains releasing everyday stuff in symbols or images as we sleep. Like a kind of replenishment. I think sometimes we have certain dreams for a certain reason that we aren’t consciously aware of. Some deep, seemingly unreachable, part of the Self is attempting to reveal something.  I love the mystery of dreams and I think they often try to take unconscious thoughts and put them into the conscious mind.

Sometimes I know things unconsciously that I don’t realize in my waking hours. These messages come to me during my slumber and I’m often blessed enough to carry the message out of the dream and into my wakening. 

In another post I mentioned that I have a recurring dream while I sleep sometimes, when I’m depressed and suicidal or having suicidal thoughts. The dream is someone chasing me and trying to kill me and in my dream I want so desperately to live and will do almost anything to survive. I’m passionate about living. My desire to live in this dream is overwhelming and I would do almost anything to save myself. This is a dream I usually only have when I’m depressed and having some degree of suicidal thoughts.

I believe it’s my unconscious mind letting me know I really do want to live, deep inside I want to live, not to listen to and give into the deadly thoughts and urges, that the depression is deceiving me into thinking I should die. The depression is clouding my Truth. My Truth is pure like sparkling white snow glistening on a cold Winter day. But depression comes along like a speeding truck headed straight for me, leaving tracks of mud upon my pure Truth. But no matter how much mud and soil and sludge it leaves upon my Truth, my inner self, my Truth and my authentic Self is still pure and sparkling, still fierce, still strong. No pain can take that. My Truth is that life is always a blessing even when it doesn’t feel so, that there’s always beauty and hope and something to carry on for, something to smile about and be thankful for even when pain or circumstances are overwhelming. No matter how much it hurts. Even when it feels like it will never get better, like all hope is lost. My truth is that I have a purpose and always will. My truth is that I want to live to inspire anyone I can, to share my own story, my happiness and sadness, my joy and pain, my beauty and my uglines, my strength and my weakness,and bring hope and healing to anyone in need.

A few months ago, I have been depressed again and had another dream. I dreamed that someone died. A woman named Angie. She’s not someone I know for real, I don’t know where my mind got her. I don’t think she’s based on a real person that I know of. But I read a fact about dreams that says when we see faces in our dreams they are people we once saw in our reality whether we remember seeing them or not, even if those people were never significant in our lives, even if we saw the face only once, and even if we haven’t seen them in decades. Our brain can’t make up faces. 

The faces/people we dream may not, in the dream, be based on who they really are in reality. It’s just the same physical face/appearance, nothing more necessarily. The example I read is that as a child we may have watched a man pumping gas into our dad’s car then years later dream of a serial killer and it’s the man pumping the gas! His face! Lol So while the face is real he wasn’t necessarily really a serial killer, he was just a man pumping gas whose face made it into a dream years later and the brain made him a serial killer. In the dream the serial killer isn’t that man we remember pumping gas at one point. It’s that our brain just took his face to incorporate into a dream.
Now, I have absolutely no clue how true this is. And if it’s true I have no idea how someone found this out. How does someone know our brains can’t make up faces that never existed? Maybe it’s common sense how someone knows but I’m lacking that common sense or maybe some research reveals it somehow. Some kind of neuroscience? It’s fascinating but I don’t know much about it. I did go to college for psychology and took many brain classes, even held an actual human brain in my hands, along with a spinal cord. My professor had/has a human brain collection in her basement. They float around in jars of fluid. Lol please don’t ask because I don’t know! 

She’s some kind of brain researcher in a lab and keeps the brains for her own entertainment. I would too! Lmao
This sounds like something out of some kind of science fiction or horror movie but it’s reality. So yeah.
I don’t remember over half the shit I learned back then. But it’s ok at least I’m humble enough to admit it! ;-D
It’s funny because sometimes I dream about this fact about dreams and faces that I’m not sure is really a fact. Lol
As a matter of fact, it’s only in a dream that I remember first learning it! 
I don’t remember learning this “fact”/fact while awake. I dreamed about learning this then one day I woke up and thought it was just some weird thing I dreamed out of nowhere. Then I looked it up and saw it’s actually said to be a fact! So I must have learned it and forgot but my unconscious self remembered and had it tucked away until I fell asleep one night.
I haven’t found any reliable sources to support it.
So anyway, if this is true, Angie in my dream who died, must be real since I saw her clearly in my dream. Maybe her name isn’t really Angie. 
Maybe in reality she’s not who she was in my dream. And hopefully she never really died.

Maybe I saw her on a bus one day years ago or in a class in college or in a picture on Facebook….who knows?
But in my dream she died. In my dream I did not know her well at all but the news of her death devastated me. This isn’t quite a stretch or unrealistic as in my reality I find the death of someone to be devastating, even the death of people/animals I hardly know or don’t know at all. Of course, it’s not as deep as for people who actually knew the person/animal but I am just filled with sorrow over the losses I hear of. I can see on the news that someone died or I read a Facebook status and am somewhat somber the rest of the day off and on or even the next few days. It’s not always equal for every one that I see. Some things hit harder for whatever reason.
But in my dream I was in a room full of people who all knew the woman who died. I don’t know where I was in the dream but in the dream it made sense. I think it may have been inspired my the building of the mental health clinic I go to for medication. There were big wooden tables and chairs, like lunchroom tables,  and a lady in charge….in charge of what I don’t know…., she was going around to different people with a clipboard and paper and pen and when she got to me we sat on the chairs, facing each other. I was grieving and felt a kind of fear and I sensed this woman before me was trying to push the problem under the rug, not wanting to talk about the issue directly or in depth because it was painful and uncomfortable.
She asked me questions I can’t remember. She wrote down my answers. I even remember the paper in the dream, clearly. It was white with black text and black boxes to write the answers in. 

Then the last question she asked me I do remember. She said something like: “What is the one quote you want to live by, choose a quote you truly believe in, one that is important, a quote you want to be the foundation for your life?” I thought about it for a few seconds and almost instantly a quote popped into my head. For real I was depressed and in my dream I was depressed and grieving. When I’m depressed I often have certain insecurities thinking I’m not good enough for anything or anyone and in my dream that’s how I felt.
I was afraid to answer. Feeling as if my answer wouldn’t be good enough. Just because it’s my answer, because nothing about me is ever good enough, it seems. I don’t always feel this way, only sometimes, especially when I’m depressed. And in the dream I felt this.
In reality I was feeling a bit hopeless. 
It carried over into my dream.
And the quote that came to me in my dream:
“You can be greater than anything that can happen to you.” ~ Norman Vincent Peale

I told the dream lady(who I must have also seen in my waking hours if that fun fact is in fact true, but I don’t remember her either, in my reality) and she happily wrote it down. She seemed impressed and she said to me “Now, you always remember that, don’t you ever forget it.”
And then I woke up.
I was and still am in awe of the beauty my brain creates when I sleep.
Of course my brain did not make up this quote. If only…lol if only my slumbering brain were THAT brilliant!
This is one of my favorite quotes that helps remind me whenever something bad happens, whenever I’m in pain of any kind, depressed, struggling with insecurities or painful memories of any past event or day, grief, struggling with tmjd “cluster headaches”….that no matter what it is, I can be greater if I let myself. I can be greater than anything that can happen to me. No matter how painful or devastating or tragic or sad. I have the power within to rise above it. And that goes for you as well. We can all be greater than anything that can happen to us. We don’t have to give our power to other people, situations, events, pain, things, or anything. Generally and ultimately, no circumstance, no person, no thing has power over you unless you allow it.
We have the power over ourselves. 

In some special cases, people do have the power to control us, situations get the best of us but in the long run, overall, we have the power over ourselves. We can choose to take it back when it seems to be taken away and pro-act.

Sometimes I let my pain, both physical and emotional, repress my Truth. I let it conquer me and my life’s philosophy. I let everything else, everything I know to be true to me, take the back burner and my pain prevail. But then it comes to me in my sleep because it never really left me. It’s still my Truth. It was there all along. And my dreams remind me… 

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I encourage you to listen to your dreams and your truth. Not everyone can remember their dreams at all or enough to interpret them or glean any inspirational or useful insights but if you do remember them, it’s possible a part of you deep inside is trying to tell you something. Listen. Listen to your inner Self. Not just your dreams while you sleep but your waking Truth. 
You may have values, opinions, philosophies, virtues that you generally firmly believe in or live by or want to honor and live up to eventually if you don’t already. But pain, either physical or emotional, situations, unpleasant experiences can cloud those truths and they become muddled and repressed and the pain becomes your truth instead. 
Maybe the pain tells you you can’t go on or that there’s no reason to. Maybe it tells you you’re worthless or that there’s no hope, no point, no purpose, no beauty, nothing but pain. Maybe it tells you that you aren’t good enough, beautiful enough, not equal to everyone else. Maybe it’s just so painful it feels like you have to die to end the pain, whether physical or emotional, or just curl up in solitude and give up on everything.

You can find and develop your Truth and authentic Self through reflecting, thinking, tuning in, meditating, writing, looking for evidence throughout your every day and your whole life to see what you really believe deep within, think about how you handle or have handled various situations and how you felt about the situations and how you handled them(were you sorry you reacted a certain way? Proud of your actions? Was there some sense of dissonance with how you reacted and how you felt? Did the two match up?), think about how you really feel deep inside around certain people, in certain circumstances, reaching out to others, photography if it’s your interest, searching through books, magazines, images and words and seeing what jumps out at you. What captures your heart and resonates with you? It doesn’t matter if you know why something captures you or not or if you never knew something appeals to you til now. Your deeper self knows. I got this idea off of author, Sarah Ban Breathnach, searching through magazines, stores, catalogs without the intention to buy anything, just listen closely and see what calls to you, what clothes, objects, jewelry, vacations, people… call to you? Which ones tug at your deepest parts? Which ones make your pulse speed a bit faster? Which ones make you tingle all over?….glue pictures to paper or a journal and it’s your self discovery journal/journey….keep up with it often to keep in touch with your deep inner Self who may be buried beneath layers of expectations of others or society as a whole or yourself that you think you should be, buried beneath fear, anxiety, pain, and anything else. 

Your pain is very real. But pain clouds our judgment making it not sound so we forget our authentic Self and our deeper Truth. Don’t listen to that pain when it deceives you. Definitely listen to your pain, tend to it, embrace it if you can, accept it, let it teach you and strengthen you and deepen your wisdom, but not conquer you and delude you. That’s not you. It’s part of you for sure, maybe even a significant loud part that screams in your eardrums, screams in your face. But screaming and throbbing and being loud doesn’t make it true. The true you is what deserves to be honored even when your Truth isn’t screaming and loud. It’s quiet and gentle and calm and warm and deep, whispering  inside but it’s evermore worthy of being honored than that loud, screaming pain that demands you to give up and lose all hope and joy. It’s more powerful than pain and delusions, quiet and gentle as it is.

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Sarah Ban Breathnach is amazing! I love her and she’s one of my greatest heroes, though I never met her in person. I would love to though! The book I referred to above with the self-discovery activity is “Something More – Excavating Your Authentic Self.” She also mentions self exploration and authentic Self activities in her book “Simple Abundance.”

Her books are mostly directed at women but they really can help anyone.

I wish you much love, hope, healing, happiness, and joy. And I hope you will always make the choice to honor your deeper self, your authentic Self, your Truth. Even when other people don’t like the true you, even when it’s hard to honor yourself. Always choose life, always choose you.

Xoxo Kim

My job <3

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Your job is not to judge. Your job is not to figure out if someone deserves something. Your job is to lift the fallen, to restore the broken, and to heal the hurting.” ~
Joel Osteen

My job is not to judge.
My job is not to figure out if someone deserves something.
My job is to lift the fallen, to restore the broken, and heal the hurting.

I wish you much love, hope, healing, & happiness!

Xoxo Kim

Random Inspiration #3

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“Don’t compare yourself to others. Compare yourself to the person you were yesterday.”

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“Believe in yourself even when it seems no one else does.”

I’m very inspired by my next door neighbors. Every year they decorate their house outside for holidays like Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas and every year someone (anonymously) rips their decorations off and throws them around and destroys them and my neighbors just put new decorations right back up like it never even happened. They don’t say a word or express anger. I am so inspired by their determination and how they don’t let the instigator even get to them. They don’t change who they are just because of some asshole.
They love to care for stray animals and used to feed the cats and other neighbors got angry saying it was bringing too many strays but they just kept right on helping the cats until they took them to a no kill shelter to find them furever homes.

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Earlier I was on a bus and it was really crowded and I was standing near the door and a sweet young man gave me his seat! Without even asking, he just got up and said “here you can sit here.” I was so thankful! I would have said no if he asked because I don’t want to put people out but it was so helpful, it can be hard to stand on a crowded moving bus, especially with a bag of books. I’m so thankful for kind strangers and random acts of kindness. It inspires me
even more to go out of my way to help others whenever I can. ❤

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“Your value doesn’t decrease based on someone’s inability to see your worth.”

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“Every experience no matter how bad it seems, holds within it a blessing of some kind. The goal is to find it.” ~ Buddha 😀

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“It’s not the load that breaks you down, it’s the way you carry it.”

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“Be selective in your battles, for sometimes peace is better than being right.”

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“A bird sitting on a tree is never afraid of the branch breaking, because her trust is not in the branch but in her own wings. Always believe in yourself.”

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Me ❤

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Xoxo Kim ❤ 😀

Random Inspiration #2

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“Joy does not simply happen to us. We have to choose joy and keep choosing it every day.  ” – Henri J. M. Nouwen

😀

Joy can just come out of the blue and be a pleasant surprise but it can also be a habit that we choose, to look for joy when it doesn’t just appear easily.

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” Today I choose life. Every morning when I wake up I can choose joy, happiness, negativity, pain… To feel the freedom that comes from being able to continue to make mistakes and choices – today I choose to feel life, not to deny my humanity but embrace it.” ~
Kevyn Aucoin

It’s possible to choose our general attitude and to pro-act when things aren’t that good.

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Scars are beautiful too.

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All is merry. All is bright.

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What is your instant happiness?! An uplifting song? A delicious drink? Crunchy, colorful leaves on the ground? Warm, sloppy puppy kissies? A cup of coffee at a sweet cafe? A chat with a friend? A funny tv show? A beautiful stranger? A midnight sky full of silvery stars? Early morning meditation? An amazing book?
Eye contact with a beautiful person? A random message?

So much to be Happy about! 😀

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” When you are joyous, look deep into your heart and you shall find it is only that which has given you sorrow that is giving you joy. When you are sorrowful look again in your heart, and you shall see that in truth you are weeping for that which has been your delight.” ~
Khalil Gibran

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MmmmMmm grape jiggly jello

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My friend gave me this for Halloween! His niece made it and it was delicious like cookie dough! :-p

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“Find joy in everything you choose to do. Every job, relationship, home… it’s your responsibility to love it, or change it.” ~
Chuck Palahniuk

Xoxo Kim

On Pain, Hope, & Life Lessons <3 {Healing Hands}

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“Although extraordinary valor was displayed by the entire corps of Spartans and Thespians, yet bravest of all was declared the Spartan Dienekes. It is said that on the eve of battle, he was told by a native of Trachis that the Persian archers were so numerous that, their arrows would block out the sun. Dienekes, however, undaunted by this prospect, remarked with a laugh, ‘Good. Then we will fight in the shade.'”

This morning I woke up not in pain. It was a strange, strange thing to wake up to. This is because I’m almost always in mild physical pain. Sometimes moderate, sometimes severe, occasionally unbearably severe. But usually just mild. It’s like background noise, the clothes against my skin, the back of a chair against my body. It’s just there, I don’t even usually realize until something brings my attention to it for some reason. It’s almost never a problem to me that I’m almost always in pain. I just accept it. It just is. It doesn’t interfere with anything or prevent joy or happiness.

Although, sometimes it disturbs me that some people must always or frequently be in pain even if it’s only mild.
It hurts me to think of it, occasionally.
And occasionally I am fearful of the fact that my body can always hurt.
Sometimes I am filled with a sense of dread.

But mostly, it’s not a problem, not an issue at all. My pain is often so mild and so frequent, so mundane that I used to suspect if it somehow does go away, I may not even notice. The mild to moderate pain is so deep into my body, so ingrained it feels as if it will never go away, like it can’t ever go away. Like it’s not a possibility. It’s so deep into me. In my face, jaw, and head. It’s as much a part of me as my other physical attributes, like the color of my skin, my hair, my dna…or at least I thought so.

I used to feel this way about my depression when I was depressed constantly everyday almost, for many years. But the difference is, the depression was a problem, a serious problem. It was destroying me. It wasn’t mild.
And for me, mild depression is worse than mild physical pain.

My mild physical pain doesn’t destroy me.

One difference to me about severe physical pain and depression is when my severe physical pain ends, I am consciously aware for a short while that I’m no longer in agony but I always go back to my usual ways of generally forgetting that I’m no longer in severe pain.

I always promise myself I won’t. I promise myself that when the horror of physical agony ends I will every waking second of everyday realize and be consciously aware that I’m not in physical agony, suffering. I break that promise. Again and again.
Sometimes I do consciously, intentionally acknowledge that I’m not in severe pain even when I haven’t been in severe pain for a while and I give thanks. This can happen out of the blue or I can intentionally summon those thoughts and feelings. My pain teaches me to be more aware of not being in pain than I would have if I never experienced it, but it’s not on my mind every second.
You know when you are very sick or have a sore throat or anything and it ends and you are consciously aware for a while then you go back to being used to it being gone?

With depression, for me, it’s not like that. I am consciously aware, literally almost every second, often even in my slumbering dreams, that I’m not suicidal and depressed when I’m not. I don’t always talk about it but my deep awareness is always there.
After years and years and more and more years of suicidal depression day in and day out with only short breaks, now that I am generally happy, I can’t take a single second of not being depressed and suicidal for granted. Not a second.

I am consciously aware of my desire and will to live. Almost always. This awareness began in 2008 but deepened and became more frequent in 2010 and as the years went on, it became even greater.

That’s why I write about it here so frequently and in a positive way. Because it’s always on my mind. And it inspires me. And I want to help everyone else I can with or without depression.

If you have ever been depressed for a few years or months or just an episode or environmental depression maybe you understand or not. But maybe people who have been depressed and suicidal for so many years, it’s hard to count, and almost constantly or for each stage of life, a life long condition, will understand at a deeper level exactly what I’m saying.

I don’t usually meet people like this that I know of.

But even if you never experienced depression of any sort, you can get some sort of idea, I hope.

I try to use my pain, both physical and emotional, to my advantage. It deepens my empathy for others and nurtures my creativity. It encourages me to always, consciously notice the beauty around me. All the simple beauty and joys. I have felt physical pain that is just as bad as my severe depression. Less frequent but the magnitude just as severe.

Also, to me, physical pain and sickness have a way of seeming more urgent than other problems, even severe problems. It has a way of temporarily pushing everything else aside, screaming for attention. It’s louder than other pain, though not necessarily worse or more painful. It needs tending to right then and there while everything else can take the back burner for a moment. It screams louder.

Both kinds of pain inspire me.

Both shatter me and make me whole.

My physical pain is usually a dull ache but it can exacerbate into a more intense throbbing ache or burning, stabbing, shooting pain. It can be constant and come in bolts of sharp pain or burning. Over and over.

When I just think of eating, I automatically, like a reflex, think of a dull ache or sometimes an unbearable throb or stabbing. I cannot chew without pain, like I said, not usually a problem as long as I’m careful but sometimes it’s a serious one. It’s not my choice to think of pain when I think of food. Again, it just is. I see food or even just think of food that looks good to me and automatically my head conjures up thoughts of pain because my jaw dysfunction results in not being able to chew without it. When I imagine eating, I imagine hurting. To me, eating is hurting. Sometimes eating is even suffering. But I don’t even always realize it because it’s so automatic and natural to me. Like if you imagine food then the taste or texture of the food or pleasure of eating. I think of all that and pain, usually mild.

I read a story written by a lady with a severe case like mine, but even worse than mine. She said when she goes to a restaurant and looks at a menu to choose her food, she doesn’t think “What do I want to eat today but how much do I want to suffer today?”

I know that exact feeling. Sometimes no matter how mouth-watering food looks, it’s just not worth it. And the pain doesn’t always come on right away. Sometimes I eat something I know I shouldn’t or chew gum, and I’ll be paying for it later. It’s better when the pain flares up worse right away because it’s more of an incentive to avoid it the next occasion I feel like giving in. Sometimes when some of us know we won’t have to pay now but later, we give into temptation because later seems less of a reality than the more near future. Like maxing out three credit cards in like less than a month. (I’m guilty)

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Today I woke up and automatically knew something was different. And I knew right away what it was. I wasn’t in pain. Not even mild pain.

But it wasn’t just that.

It wasn’t just the absence of pain but more like the actual presence of “no pain.” As if “no pain” isn’t merely lack but an entity itself. It was a presence. A physical presence. “No pain” wasn’t just lack of, it wasn’t just no pain. It was something. A healing “blanket.” Like a thickness of something. My jaw, my face, my head. It finally stopped throbbing. It finally stopped aching. The stabbing, the burning, it all stopped.

But something came in its place. Something I can’t explain or understand. I don’t know if it’s just because I’m not used to not being in pain, it felt like this or if it was something else but it wasn’t a mere absence or lack.

It was a feeling of like healing and comfort all in my jaw, face, and head. A soothing essence, a physical presence of hope. That’s what it felt like. I don’t know what else to say about it because I can’t find the words. It wasn’t just an emotional, mental, or psychological feeling. It was physical and only in the places where it usually hurts. It’s kind of bizarre.

I wanted to not get out of bed. I wanted to stay and bask and bathe and soak in that unusual, strange, warm, inviting feeling I never experienced before then. I wanted to greedily devour it. I feared, for a second, that it was only a dream and that I would awaken and soon the beautiful feeling would be snatched by the rapacious hands of reality.

But it wasn’t a dream.

When I wasn’t yet diagnosed with the disorder I used to lay in my bed many nights in agony. In so much pain both physical and the emotional pain and loneliness it brought
to me.
When it was unbearable and almost unbearable and I was often afraid to touch my face, I would imagine a hand touching my face, a soothing touch, rubbing my face, taking my pain away. Gently stroking my cheek. I imagined this hand in various skin colors. Sometimes it was an old hand with wrinkles, sometimes young and smooth skin. Sometimes it was a man’s hand, usually a woman’s. I even used to sometimes envision the fingernails, the prints. I felt the softness of compassionate touch. All different hands on different nights, delicately upon my face.

But it was always a healing hand. It couldn’t take away my physical pain but it helped me ease my loneliness and fear.

I would imagine a healing vibration just flowing through me. I imagined love flowing through my face and head. Flowing through every cell of my body.

The feeling I imagined back then is not unlike the real feeling I experienced this morning. It was almost like an invisible hand touching me, healing me.

I recently experienced a very bad flare up that lasted over a week then regressed back to the mild pain. I wonder if I dreamed of those imaginary healing hands last night, those hands that soothed my fear and eased my loneliness, and I woke up temporarily healed.

Did my cells hear my dream? Were my nerves and my muscles and my bones soothed by the memory of my vivid healing imagery late into the night all those years ago? Was my pain quieted by a healing sleeping fantasy? I will never know.

I was reminded that things CAN get better even when it seems they can’t.

This experience in the morning in its symbolic realness, instilled a deeper sense of hope into me. I thought that pain was literally impossible to heal, to get to go completely away. Not always necessarily in a negative way, not always despair. I thought it was just something I had to always live with constantly being there. It wasn’t all bad.

But this situation helped me realize that even when something feels impossible or like it can never get better, it can! Even severe depression, suicidal urges and thoughts and other unpleasant situations that feel hopeless and literally impossible to make better, they can get better. Even if a situation or chronic pain can’t get better or won’t for whatever reason, we can learn to live with it and be happy anyway.

Be happy anyway.

Find joy anyway. Find beauty anywhere.

In all its colors and forms and feelings.

I was reminded of this life lesson today.

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I hope you will tune into reminders and little messages of hope all around you. Sometimes they come easily, out of the blue, and sometimes we have to force ourselves to see.

But they are there. Little gems of hope all around. We can find hope in the early morning Sun, the Moon in the midst of all that celestial darkness, hope in the thousands of twinkling stars up above, hope in the gentle Spring that blooms to life after a long cold barren Winter, hope in the dead of Winter, glistening in the snow and frost, hope in the beauty of Fall, the crisp wind and leaves that adorn the ground and streets, hope in the soft rhythm of Summer’s sweet song, the warmth of the beams of golden sun that caress the living flowers and trees, hope in the pulsation of your heart and the rhythm of your breath. Hope in the life that breathes in you.

“I told her once I wasn’t good at anything. She told me survival is a talent.”
Susanna Kaysen, “Girl, Interrupted”

Xoxo Kim

Random Inspiration #1

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“If you look the right way, you can see that the whole world is a garden.” ~
Frances Hodgson Burnett

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It’s a rainy day today here in Philadelphia and I stopped to capture some raindrops on a flower! Even though it’s Fall there’s still some living (but drooping) and vibrant flowers.

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Every day one should at least hear one little song, read one good poem, see one fine painting and — if at all possible — speak a few sensible words.” ~
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

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“If you’re really listening, if you’re awake to the poignant beauty of the world, your heart breaks regularly. In fact, your heart is made to break; its purpose is to burst open again and again so that it can hold evermore wonders.” ~ Andrew Harvey

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“You must understand the whole of life, not just one little part of it. That is why you must read. That is why you must look at the skies. That is why you must sing, and dance, and write poetry. And suffer. And understand. For all that is life.” ~
Jiddu Krishnamurti

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“You must learn day by day, year by year to broaden your horizon. The more
things you love, the more you are interested in, the more you enjoy, the more
you are indignant about, the more you have left when anything happens.”
~Ethel Barrymore

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“To see is to forget the name of the thing one sees.” ~ attributed to
Paul Valéry

😀

Xoxo Kim

Fun facts about meeee <3

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I saw a random blog challenge “get to know me facts” and I love to get to know people and love listing random, useless, but fun facts about me! So here goes!

I did a couple of these before too.
;-D

1.) I love dogs (and all animals) and have six! Three boys and three girls. They are my princes and my princesses! They are the center of my universe and are the most spoiled little things! Four of them sleep in bed with me regularly at night and sometimes five do. They steal my blankets and pillows and it’s annoying but also adorable and I let them keep them.  I’m quite serious when I say my world revolves around them. Lol I usually make sure whatever food I’m eating is safe for dogs so when they’re begging I can give them some even if I prefer a different kind of food that they can’t have! My family celebrates their birthdays and all the anniversaries when they were adopted or came to live with us! They get their own Christmas stocking and everything they want. I wouldn’t have it any other way!

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2.) I’m a very shy extrovert but probably live more like an introvert. I  would love being surrounded  with people day and night if I had the opportunity but I can be just as happy being in my room reading, meditating, or listening to music alone. I love people but also love my own company

3.) I have almost always had a positive body image. When I was a little girl I thought people on TV could see me through the screen and I thought they thought I was the most adorable thing. I had a short denim skirt that was my favorite and I would put it on and dance around the room, showing off, while watching TV, especially that old movie “Pillow Talk” (it was my favorite movie) so they would all see how beautiful I was! Lol

4.)  I don’t watch tv because I just have no interest but I love the TV show “King of Queens” when it’s on in my house. It’s so funny! I have the theme song on my phone! 

5.) My favorite music is Oldies music. Like old old. I’m not talking about 70’s or 80’s although I like some of that too. I’m talking about 50’s music and also 60’s. Ooollllddd ass music! Lol Oldies was my favorite for as long as I can remember but I used to be too embarrassed to tell people, especially other kids, until I was in college. As a teenager I would look up lyrics to all the “coolest” and latest songs just so I was able to join conversations with other kids about music and act like I loved all the same music. I wouldn’t dare spill my dirty little secret that I only listened to those Oldies but goodies! I even used to change the dial on my handheld radio when I put it down in case anyone picked it up and “caught me” listening to oldies. Lol! Now I will proudly scream it off the rooftops. I don’t care what they say I won’t live in a world without Oldies! (I think I shared this fact on here previously somewhere!) 

6.) I love so much when I’m selected for jury service. I love every single thing about it. I love the criminal justice building, center city Philadelphia, learning about the process, the juror sticker, the lunch break, the chairs, the people, the forms, the TV screens, the hallways and rooms, the feel of it, the big room, all the energy I feel being surrounded by all those people ….i would volunteer every week if I could. I wish I were selected every year instead of every other year.  I was never selected as a juror and I am so disappointed. 😦 I always wanted a civil case but criminal ones are interesting too.  
I heard if someone gets put on a trial the person may not get selected again for like over a decade so maybe it’s good I don’t so I don’t  have to go that long without being called again! Most people I hear of try to go to great lengths to get out of it. I would go to great lengths to get into it. Lol like maybe coming up with a fake last name just to get selected more than once every other year! ;-D

“It’s your turn!” lol

7.) I think it would be so amazing to be a lawyer. And I’m good at debating. I can blow your mind with my skills. Lol If I were going to I would like to be a criminal defense attorney. 

8.) I always thought I would love to be a model. To try different hair and clothing styles, expressions and makeup and poses! So fun!

9.) When I was a little girl and wouldn’t get what I wanted (which was rare- my mom over spoiled me!) or things wouldn’t go my way, I would often run around on my ankles all angry, like bend them and run all around, even in school!  Now my ankles collapse unexpectedly on various occasions and I just fall or almost fall. My mom and me laugh hysterically and my mom is convinced it’s because of doing that when I was a kid. If so, I guess it serves me right for being a spoiled little bitch!

10.) I am so easily amused over the dumbest things all throughout everyday even when I’m not in a happy mood and it gets me into trouble but it’s ok, at least I’m having fun and it’s uplifting to be this way! I am so annoyed when I’m angry at someone but also amused and I cannot stop laughing because then it makes it so people probably won’t take my anger seriously! 

11.) I love dark poetry better than the happy kind – not because I’m sad and dark, I’m not usually dark and gloomy and even when I’m happy I love it! I’m just in tune with the dark side. It’s beautiful to capture the darker side of life in photos or poetic writing. But I love happy songs, movies and endings to books, usually better than sad ones.

12.) I’m very interested in things that have to do with law. Philosophy of law is a fascinating subject!

13.) I sit around completing logic problems just for fun and I have as much fun as people when they’re on vacation or traveling, just doing this! It gives me the greatest thrill! 

14.) I don’t drink alcoholic beverages ever and the only reason is it doesn’t appeal to me just like certain food doesn’t. I’m not morally against it or afraid of becoming addicted, although addiction runs in my family severely. I never had more than a few sips in my whole life and that was years ago. 
But alcoholic bottles, cans, and signs are some of my favorite things to takes photos off. Along with cigarette packs.

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I found this under a bridge one night.

15.) I’m not afraid very easily and generally not prone to anxiety. I’m not afraid of needles or blood or hospitals or surgery or rodents or insects or anything. And I have a strong stomach and don’t get queasy over that stuff. 

16.) I would never go skydiving or bungee jumping and roller coasters terrify me. Hell no! Lol I guess it kind of contradicts the above fact! 

17.) I love holidays but I don’t go all out to celebrate, only in my head. I love the feel and I just bask in the energy, sense of unity in the air,  and decorations and beauty all around during the holiday seasons!

18.) I’m not very thoughtful with buying gifts. Some people are so good at choosing the most personalized, touching gifts. Not me. I have no idea what to buy people. My thoughtfulness manifests better in my words or intention to help in some ways, I’m good at writing and expressing my appreciation or well wishes for people even if it’s just a brief Facebook message or blog comment…or thinking of little details that may help make something easier for someone.

19.) I don’t have an aversion to any part of the body, mine or anyone else’s. I see/hear of so many people who claim to not stand people’s feet, even their own (it’s strange how many people I see writing this! Like it’s a trend now or something?). Ummm…it’s part of the body, the way it’s made to be. And some people are disgusted over brain or stomach related things like the acid or fluid! Again, it’s part of the beautiful human anatomy! Not disgusting. Lol
Imagine not having those things! We would be in trouble! The whole body is beautiful. 

20.) I wear old fashioned kind of clothes I guess. No leggings or skinny jeans for me! I love only flare pants and low cut shirts. The same kind of clothes I have been wearing for over a decade. I also don’t care that my bra straps often show even though I see people making fun of girls online for their under garments showing. Lol

21.) I go out with my hair wet right after a shower. I read about a study that says most people perceive girls who go out with wet hair as being lazy and sloppy. Oh well, I am lazy and sloppy, think what you will! 😀

22.) I have a strange memory. I can remember birth dates and other dates extremely well and I can remember facts really good but I cannot for the life of me remember to do things I’m supposed to do or all the things I’m supposed to buy at a store. I can’t remember phone numbers either, including my own!

23.) my mom says I have the mentality of a man which she thinks is disgusting and she’s convinced I was a man “in another life.” I like “dirty” songs and memes. I think perverted jokes are hilarious and things that have to do with bodily functions and text them to her just to freak her out. I can be very immature. Lol

24.) In high school, I had perfect attendance all four years, not one day missed. I loved school and rarely got sick. No matter how much pain I was in, how tired I was, how badly I wanted to roll over and go back to sleep, how horrible the weather was….i got up and out the door. There were even some days my mom encouraged me to stay home like if there was a snowstorm but school was still in session or when I would be in severe head/face pain which was related to my pain disorder but I did not know back then, but I was determined to soak up every day of school I could. Luckily I never had anything serious like influenza or something where I would have had to stay home or I would have put everyone else in danger because I wouldnt risk getting others sick! So it’s all because of my health and my determination. At our graduation, three of us had perfect attendance all four years. More did for three, more for two, and even more for one year.

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and there’s this as well:

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It seems I have a thing for showing up.

25.) physical description: I’m 5 feet 5 inches and always wished I was taller but I love wearing 5 or 6 inch stilettos and I feel super tall when I do! And I love it! I have blue eyes with a large green splash in each one. So when I wear green eye shadow or green shirts, my eyes usually look completely green. I have long hair, a bit longer than waist length and it’s naturally a medium shade of brown with natural orange and blond highlights. Some lighting can make it look more blonde while others can make it look more red/orange. But it’s brown. I love it and never put hair dye in it. I don’t change my hair style ever, I never get tired of it. I just trim it occasionally. 

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26.) I never needed glasses or contacts but I think glasses are cute and if I needed glasses I would choose them over contacts. Also, less dangerous even though they probably have more complications than contacts. 

27.) I have always loved brown eyes. They are so warm and lovely. But I think all colors are pretty.

28.) I don’t really plan things and don’t mind having plans change at the last minute or planning things on the spur of the moment. I’m easy-going and procrastinate with things and am messy and disorganized. I’m not a perfectionist(although sometimes I wish I were perfect – whatever “perfect” is.). It’s not all good but it’s also a lot less negative stress to be this way, I think, than one of these “type A personalities.”

29.) I love when there’s something I swore up and down I would never like, do, or wear then I come to love it! Example: flats. I always disliked flat shoes and said I would never wear them. Ever. I thought they were ugly and just Eww but now I love flats and have a few pairs. I actually had many pairs but my dog chewed them along with a few pairs of my stilettos! Also, cheeses fries with ketchup on them! Eww! I used to see kids eating them in high school and it was disgusting! Then one day in college I ordered cheese fries at one of the window stands and clearly said no ketchup when they asked and they put ketchup on but I was so hungry I tried them and loved them! And I promised I would never read fiction books. I thought it was a waste and only wanted to read education stuff now I LOVE fiction after reading a fiction book just because I liked the title and it inspired me to try more now I’m hooked! And I love how fiction isn’t restrained by the rules of reality even in realistic novels and anything can go!

30.) I’m extremely forgiving and probably couldn’t hold a grudge if my life depended on it, especially when people say sorry or appear to be sorry. It comes very naturally to me, it’s not even like I have to make it a point to try to forgive usually, it just comes easily, automatically. But sometimes it doesn’t and I accept or work on it. 

31.) I’m also extremely trusting to the point I’m stupid. And I trust the same people over and over and over no matter what they keep doing.

32.) I believe people are basically good. Some go above and beyond the goodness of the average person and most everyone does not good stuff now and again but I believe deep inside we’re pretty much all good.

33.) I am very easy to please. Very, very. I’m satisfied with nearly every movie I watch, every book I read, all the food I consume, every gift I receive. But once in a while(rarely) I do read a book I dislike and am not used to the feeling it provokes in me. I recently purchased a book about a Christmas story and a mystery baby and it really isn’t that good. It made no sense to me, like the point. I have some sense of it though. And also it just isn’t that interesting and I felt that my night was wasted because I stayed up all night reading it just to find out the answer to the mystery. I usually just stop reading when a book isn’t good but I wanted to see the big mystery! And it was a disappointment anyway! 
Lol I don’t care about the wasted money and anyway it was only $1.00 and someone is probably being helped by the money that goes to the book so that’s good. It’s my wasted night I can’t get back. But it’s not really “wasted.” It was my choice and I would never have known if not for staying up reading. I love thinking back even a long while later, to when I read certain books and the feelings they bring back. 

34.) Greasy food is heaven to me, the greasier the better!! I love Mcdonald’s french fries but they were better when they were more greasy and less healthy, they tasted better but now they got healthy I think. Still delicious though. I think our president’s wife got to them with her health freak ways! Lol

35.) Coca Cola is my favorite soda!! I drink it everyday! I think it’s the least healthy soda too. I drink water at night now and early in the morning more than soda but all day it’s Coca Cola all the way! I can tell the difference right away with Pepsi and Coca Cola. Many people say they taste the same. Not to me! Pepsi is weaker. And less and different flavor. And I take pictures of Coca Cola trucks whenever I see one! 

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36.) I love animated, kiddie movies like Toy Story, Arthur Christmas, and the Nightmare Before Christmas!! My dog is named Woody after the doll in Toy Story. It’s actually Dagwood and we call him Woody! He’s less than four months old!

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37.) I’m not a crier(sp?) for me, it’s not my cup of tea. No matter how happy, joyful, sad, or depressed I am, I will not cry over it. I have breakdowns but only in my head. Lol I am good at remaining calm and composed. I experience deep sensation/emotion but it doesn’t provoke me to cry. The only thing that can have me wanting to scream and sob hysterically out loud is a certain kind of physical pain. 

” Raindrops keep fallin’ on my head
But that doesn’t mean my eyes will soon be turning red
Crying’s not for me
Cause I ain’t gonna stop the rain by complaining” ~ Bj Thomas

38.)  When I was a little girl, I had a bad habit of picking stuff up off the ground. Anything I could get my hands on. My mom used to scream in horror over the stuff I picked up. Unsanitary stuff, leaves, earrings, pins, old razor blades, hospital bracelets, stones, acorns and pine cones…sadly I haven’t outgrown that habit for some reason. Not so long ago I picked up a tube of something thinking it was paint. It was testosterone gel, that stuff advertised on commercials warning women and children not to touch. I touched it. 

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(a little something I found under a bridge one night – it’s empty and I don’t smoke cigarettes)

39.) I like to dance around my room late at night and very early in the morning while the world around me is sound asleep. I listen to music and dance dance dance…usually gratitude meditations can trigger this.

😀

Xoxo Kim


Philadelphia <3

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In my e-mail box everyday I receive a suggestion for some thing to do that day that can contribute to health or just be a fun little thing to do like certain exercises, looking up a certain health topic to learn about, making a gratitude list….. Many of these things are great to make a habit of in general. It’s a “challenge of the day” that I subscribed to a few years ago.
Here:

https://challenge.meyouhealth.com/signup

 Recently one of the challenges was to list three places to visit in the place where you live. I live in Philadelphia in Pennsylvania in the US which is the best city on Earth! Lol Almost every single day I’m walking around Philadelphia streets taking photos of everything. I often take pictures of the same things on different days at various angles or with different effects.  
I know when people see me they have to be thinking I’m just a visitor here because who else is in awe like this over the place they see and live everyday?! Lol

One of my favorite things to take pictures of is our SEPTA busses and trolleys and other busses. I have been asked on Facebook how many more busses am I going to post and told I must really like “that bus!” 

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And it’s not even the same bus!
And yes I do love those septa busses and trolleys! 

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And also the buildings in Center City which are breathtaking.

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I have been to a few other cities including nyc and others in NY and ones in NJ and I love those too but nothing can be as beautiful as Philadelphia is to me!



I lived here forever and always will.


I would love to visit other cities especially in Texas and Colorado. I would love to see Aspen. 



But Philadelphia will always be mine. 






I decided to list quite a few places here in Philadelphia that are popular attractions or just amazing and are all places I have been to at one point.  

The Eastern State Penitentiary – this is the old abandoned prison which is in a state of semi ruin and on display for people to learn of its fascinating history. And they also have the Halloween exhibit every year which is still going until Nov. 8th! It’s said to be a real haunted prison! Lol :-O
http://www.easternstate.org/?device=desktop

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Us Constitution Center – Here you can learn All about our wonderful constitution! It includes interactive exhibitions and conversations about the US Constitution. It’s not associated with any political affiliation. It’s fascinating. I haven’t been there in a while and want to go back soon!
http://constitutioncenter.org/

Ben Franklin museum

This is a very interesting place to learn about Benjamin Franklin and his life. They have interactive displays to teach and entertain people. 
http://www.phlvisitorcenter.com/attraction/benjamin-franklin-museum

Rittenhouse park – the most beautiful park in the whole world! 
http://www.pps.org/great_public_spaces/one?public_place_id=393

http://rittenhouserow.org/index.php/rittenhouse-row/history

Philadelphia Museum of Art

Check out all the amazingness!

http://www.philamuseum.org/

New harmony restaurant – This is a vegetarian Chinese restaurant! It has some of the best food I ever tasted!  MmmMmmM :-p

135 N 9th St, Philadelphia, PA 19107

JFK Plaza or Love Park as it’s also known as –

It’s in Center City!! 

16TH AND JFK BOULEVARD
PHILADELPHIA, PA 19102 

Garden of letters bookstore – I love it! It’s a bookstore and it like specializes in spiritual things. They have totem stones, tarot cards, notebooks, all kinds of lovely things!

527 South St, Philadelphia, PA 19147

Book trader – my favoritest bookstore in all the land! My love! It’s an old used bookstore and maybe kind of on the expensive side but I just love it! Books books everywhere! All different categories! My favorite is the philosophy and self-help sections. The people are very friendly too!

7 N 2nd St, Philadelphia, PA 19106

Liberty Bell – it’s a large bell and it’s broken. 

6th St & Market St, Philadelphia, PA 19106

Reading terminal market – this is where I go when I have jury service! 

They have lots and lots of food of various kinds and all kinds of other stuff including books! 
I love all the veggie food they have and the scents in the building are mouth-watering!
They also have meat products for all of you omnivores and carnivores(?)!

http://www.readingterminalmarket.org/

The Franklin institute – they have all kinds of entertaining exhibits, movies, shows, attractions….very fun!

https://www.fi.edu/

The rocky statue and the rocky steps – 

The steps to the art museum. Two of the most popular attractions in Philadelphia, the statue and steps.

http://www.visitphilly.com/museums-attractions/philadelphia/the-rocky-statue-and-the-rocky-steps/

The Betsy Ross House – I used to go here on school trips!

http://historicphiladelphia.org/betsy-ross-house/visitors/

The please touch museum – when I was little I used to go here too. It is intended for children seven years and younger. I remember playing with a toy chicken here many years ago! Lol and a little boy was playing with it with me! It was amazing being able to touch everything!

http://www.pleasetouchmuseum.org/?no_redirect=true

Amitayus Kadampa Buddhist Center

This is where I take Buddhist/meditation classes every week. The classes are different prices, some eight dollars, some ten, some thirty. They have various social events. You don’t have to be a Buddhist or a member of the center or plan on becoming one to attend. They welcome everyone.

http://www.meditationinphiladelphia.org/

So there are some of the main attractions or ones that I love! And there are many more! Come to Philadelphia if you aren’t here already and see for yourself. 

http://www.visitphilly.com/itineraries/philadelphia/top-10-most-visited-attractions-in-philadelphia/

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To people who grew up in other places or have lived there for a while, in Philadelphia we are known as being loud, rude, and have insane traffic(but not as bad as in NYC and Boston, I hear). Lol  I did not always realize this since I always lived here and haven’t been to many other places. But when I’m talking to people who lived in other places, that’s what I hear. They are shocked, especially if they lived in Southern states because everyone is so friendly and kind in those states I’m told. I looovvveee that Southern accent and I’m envious because I don’t have it!
Yes the traffic is kind of messed up when I think about it. They scream at each other out the windows a lot. And I do see people pushing each other and jumping in front of each other on busses very often and that is uncalled for and rude. Lol I don’t do that though. They may not be rude though in general, it’s just a fast paced city where people are too busy and in a hurry.
I’m not loud at all, I am very quiet. But yes, people here are loud! It doesn’t faze me though, I’m used to it. 
And I hear that we pronounce “water” in a weird way. Like “wooder?”
Lol I don’t think I say it like that.
And we drop the “ing” off of words?! “I’m not doin’ nuttin’ today!”  ;-D
All of these things never even occurred to me until I met people who pointed it out! How fascinating!
And….we have WATER ICE!!! Also known as Italian Ice. Many people outside of Philadelphia don’t even know what it is! My favorite is cherry! But I love most flavors. I don’t even know how to say what water ice is. 
It’s all soft and smooth. Like ice cream but not milky. 
One day someone asked me. I was at a loss for words. 
I love when I see someone eating water ice who never experienced it before! I work at a water ice/ice cream store! And when we have visitors who don’t live here or ones who just moved here they look at it in wonder! 

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:-p 

I encourage you to acknowledge the beauty in your own city even if it’s not where you want to be. There still has to be something that catches your eyes or your heart!  Pay close attention and be mindful of all the gifts that surround you, take pictures, breathe deeply, soak up everything you can around you. I think we can all tune into the blessings around us.

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Here are some of my favorite quotes about beauty and gratitude/happiness/joy:

“Think of all the beauty still left around you and be happy.” ~ Anne Frank

“Happiness cannot be traveled to, owned, earned, or worn. It is the spiritual experience of living every minute with love, grace & gratitude.” ~ Denis Waitley

“Three things you cannot recover in life: the WORD after it’s said, the MOMENT after it’s missed and the TIME after it’s gone. Be Careful!” ~Unknown
 

“Though no one can go back and make a brand new start, anyone can start from now and make a brand new ending.” ~Carl Bard

“Just remember there is someone out there that is more than happy with less than what you have.” ~Unknown

Xoxo Kim 😀