How One Small Act Of Kindness Saved Lives: Giving Lipsticks To Women on The Brink of Death

one small act of kindnessPhoto source: Flickr

If I told you that giving lipstick to women on the brink of death could help keep them alive, would you find it hard to believe?

And if I told you that this specific group of women was in the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp when the first British soldiers came to liberate them in 1945, would you think my claim even more ridiculous?

I don’t blame you. Because when I read the account of this story in Larry Dossey’s outstanding book, One Mind: How Our Individual Mind Is Part of A Greater Consciousness, my skin began to tingle, my heart started racing, and my eyes quickly read and re-read the passage several times to embrace the reality of his account.

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How to Live Like You Have Nothing to Fear and Everything to Gain

The Unstoppablt Courage Club

I’m thrilled that my dear friend, Tess Marshall, creator of The Bold Life, courage coach, and entrepreneur, is my guest blogger today. Tess is living proof of someone who has transformed her life from a fear based orientation to one of courage, joy, pushing boundaries, and taking risks. I urge you to listen to what she has to say~ it is powerful! With love, Fran

“When we are afraid of something, we tend to act with caution, play it safe and stick to the proven path.

We miss out on exciting experiences, new adventures and the possibility of living an exceptional life.

What areas in your life do you choose not to change because it seems easier to live in your comfort zone rather than risk trying something new, even if it could enhance your life?

When we ignore and avoid dealing with what keeps us small, our world shrinks and our fear expands.

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An Interview About The Power of Flowers and Gardening With Debra Prinzing of Slow Flowers

locally grown flowers

I have been a fan of Debra Prinzing’s work for many years. She is the author of 7 books, writes for several publications and is a popular speaker. Her most recent endeavor is initiating a movement called Slow Flowers, a nationwide online directory to florists, shops, and studios who design with American-grown flowers.

This past winter, Debra asked me to be a guest on her highly respected podcast, Slow Flowers, to discuss my book, Digging Deep and the power of flowers. She and I are both passionate about buying locally grown flowers and making flowers an integral part of everyday life so being a guest on her show was a joy.

Please get onto Debra Prinzing’s website to listen to her interview with me and learn more about  how she is helping to make a positive change in the world by being a champion of the sustainable flower movement.

I think you’ll enjoy getting to know her. I know I have.

And if you’re interested in learning how to use ‘Playing With Flowers’, an exercise from my book, Digging Deep: Unearthing Your Creative Roots Through Gardening, as a tool for inspiring playfulness and mindfulness, the article below tells you how to do it.

HOW DESIGNING FLORAL ARRANGEMENTS CAN BE AN EXERCISE IN PLAYFULNESS AND MINDFULNESS

If you think that buying fresh cut local flowers and creating stunning floral arrangements for your home is a luxury, think again.

Research has shown that being in the presence of flowers increases your level of optimism and sense of security, helps to decrease stress, and can have a significant effect on your ‘happiness’ factor.

 

Playing with Flowers.

So a suggestion this winter. Rather than grabbing whatever flowers you can find at the florist or grocery store, why not slow down and transform creating floral arrangements into both a playful and meditative practice…..while designing something beautiful?

10 TIPS ON HOW TO DO IT

1. If possible, locate a sustainable local flower grower in your area. Very often you can find them at your farmer’s market. If not, check out Debra Prinzing’s  Slow Flowers directory to see if there is a grower or florist close to you that carries locally grown flowers.

2. Buy at least a few dozen flowers. My strategy is to purchase larger numbers of one variety–similar to what I do in the garden so that I end up with at least 6 of one type of flower.

Don’t rush. Really take you time and decide what pleases your eye. Remember, it is only flowers you’re buying. If you’re unsure about what you like, experiment and try something new.

3. Bring flowers home and place in a cool sink of water. Using a sharp pruner, remove all foliage near the bottom of the stem and cut an inch off of the bottom of the stem.

My rule of thumb is to cut less than more from the stems. Until you start placing them in vases, you probably won’t know what height you’ll want them to be.

To read more, click on here.

 

 

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15 Powerful Spiritual Truths To Unleash Your Creative and Joyful Self for 2015

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Now is the time of year when we reflect and make a pact with ourselves to change behaviors that are holding us back from being the best of who we are meant to be.

I have always found this habit of making New Year’s resolutions a bit strange and wasteful because the truth is this: In order to change any behavior over the long haul, you need to change how you think about yourself. Making a resolution to lose weight, eat more nutritiously, and being more generous are noble ideas. But the fact is that the majority of people who join an exercise program or start a diet at the beginning of the year have failed at maintaining their resolution 30 days post January 1st.

Throughout the years, as an Interfaith Minister and coach, I have witnessed the most consistent and magnificent transformations in individuals when they honor and perceive their lives as a spiritual journey. They understand that it is at the core of our well-being and make it a priority by integrating spirituality into moments throughout their day.

Making long lasting changes in any area of your life takes consistent work and desire. It doesn’t take place overnight. It happens when you make a commitment and understand that bite size changes are the usually the most sustaining way to work at improving yourself. Even 10 minutes a day of spiritual mindfulness can result in a significant changes in your life.

With that in mind, I’m sharing 15 favorite spiritual quotes that I hope will guide, inspire, and help you unleash your creative and joyful self as you embark on this new year of 2015.

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Digging Deep’s Book Party Update with Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds and more

Hummingbird in a Flower Garden

We’re into our 2nd full day of the DIGGING DEEP CYBER BOOK PARTY and GIVEAWAY and we have FINALLY worked out all of the glitches.

Our 8th garden blogger, Jan Johnsen, who was unable to get to a computer where she was on a trip in the mountains somewhere in California, found the time and place to write and publish her post and has now joined our group. I’m so appreciative that she is part of this fun event. Not only does she add a unique voice to the gardening community BUT her involvement means another chance for you to win one of the wonderful prizes available.

To make sure that you are up-to-date on everything and have all of the information you need to make a beeline to every blogger listed in order to participate, here is the updated information.

SPECIAL LIMITED TIME OFFER ON DIGGING DEEP

In celebration of this party, I’ve priced the Kindle edition of Digging Deep at the ridiculously low price of .99 for the week of the giveaway. My suggestion is to get onto Amazon and order one for yourself so that you don’t forget to do it before it jumps back to its regular price. Again, the kindle edition is at .99 only through December 8th. Then it jumps back up to its normal price.

Digging Deep 10th Anniversary Edition

Digging Deep e-book on Amazon for only .99 for duration of giveaway

There are 8 garden bloggers posting.

On every blogger’s site, there will be giveaways.

Dee Nash- Red Dirt Ramblings

Helen Yoest- Gardening With Confidence

Jenny Peterson – J Peterson Garden Design

Rebecca Sweet- Harmony In The Garden

Debra Prinzing- Debra Prinzing blog

Brenda Haas- BG Garden

Jan Johnsen- Serenity In The Garden

Fran Sorin - Gardening Gone Wild and one grand prize here from DeWit Garden Tools

 

COMPANIES WHO HAVE DONATED PRIZES

Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds – 19 handpicked varieties of vegetables and flowers bundled together. You have 9 chances to win this prize on 9 sites.

Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds Giveaway-19 handpicked varieties of flowers and veggies

Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds Giveaway-19 handpicked varieties of flowers and veggies

The varieties include:

Red Express Cabbage produces early, solid, split-resistant oval heads on compact plants. Precoce d” Argenteuil Asparagus is a gourmet variety that is highly esteemed in Europe for its delicious stems that can be balanced white with rose-colored buds. Quadrato d’ Asti Giallo Pepper is a giant yellow bell pepper with a sweet and rich flavor. Alaska Shasta Daisy Wildflower is an easy-to-grow perennial with large, white daisy flowers with bright yellow centers. Munstead Strain Lavender is a compact perennial that seldom exceeds a foot in height. Kellogg’s Breakfast Tomato is a beautiful orange beefsteak variety that is flavorful and superbly sweet. Pink Accordion Tomato has large, pink fruit that is ruffled like an accordion and excellent for stuffing. Red Hat Mexican Hat Wild Flower is a colorful perennial with red flowers that look like Mexican hats. Lemon drop Hot Pepper is a seasoning pepper from Peru that ripens to a clean lemon yellow with slightly citrus-y heat. Rattlesnake Pole Bean is easy to grow and produces lots of green pods that have purple streaks and good flavor. Jumbo Pink Banana Squash produces large yields of large pink banana-shaped fruit that can weigh 10-40 pounds. Ping Tung Eggplant is a Taiwan variety that produces sweet and tender purple fruits that are superbly delicious. Tigger Melon is small in size, fragrant, and a beautiful vibrant yellow with brilliant red zigzag stripes. Minibel Tomato is an indeterminate variety that produces bite-sized fruits that are sweet and flavorsome. Royal Golden Watermelon has tasty pinkish-red flesh that is sweet, crisp and refreshing. Black Krim Tomato produces juicy, dark red-purple fruit with rich sweet flavor. Chioggia Beet is an Italian heirloom with light red skin and beautiful rings inside, like red and white candy stripes. Broad Leaf Sage is used in Europe and America to flavor many meats, stuffings, vinegars and more. Patisson Stripe Melange Squash is an ornamental mix that contains fruit in many colors with many being striped and warted.

Baker Creek Heirloom Seed Company carries over 1700 varieties of open pollinated herb, vegetable, and flower seeds. They carry one of the largest selection of seeds form the 19th century, including many Asian, European, and South American varieties. All Baker Creek seeds are non-treated, non-hybrid, non-patented, and non-patented.

Authentic Haven Brand Soil Conditioner – 3 pack variety – you have 8 chances to win this prize on 8 bloggers’ sites.

Authentic Haven Brand and Digging Deep Giveaway

Authentic Haven Brand Natural Brew Variety Pack

Authentic Haven Brand Natural Brew premium soil conditioner teas are safe for all garden, indoor plants and soil types. Makes an excellent foliage spray.

You can extend your growing season by hydrating your seeds/bulbs before planting to enhance germination and stimulate root growth. Simply place your seeds or bulbs in a bowl or bucket of manure tea. Recommended hydrating time:

Small seeds – 1 to 4 hours
Medium seeds – 4 to 6 hours
Large seeds – 6 to 8 hours

Nature Innovations – Molded from live trees, these planters are made from a high density polyurethane, lightweight, UV resistant, and incredibly durable. All Nature Innovations planters are individually hand painted and are 100% made in the USA.

Nature Innovations Givewaway- 4 Indoor/Outdoor Containers

Nature Innovations Giveaway- 4 Indoor/Outdoor Containers

One giveaway includes:

1 small 4″ vertical oak planter
1 11″ long horizontal planter
1 medium 8″ vertical birch planter
1 medium 13″ horizontal oak planter.
You have 8 chances to win this prize on 8 bloggers’ sites.
AND ONE SPECIAL PRIZE ONLY ON THIS SITE IS from Derk deWit of DeWit Garden Tools. They are outstanding tools hand made from Holland.
DeWit Garden Tool Variety Pack Giveaway

DeWit Garden Tool Variety Pack Giveaway

You have 1 chance to win this prize only on this site.

Anyone who owns a DeWit garden tool can vouch for its quality. Once you hold one in your hand, you’ll be hard pressed to share it with others

The giveaway will continue through Monday, December 8th. All winners will be announced on December 9th. Only U.S. Residents are eligible to win.

In order to throw your hat into the ring, read each blogger’s post and follow instruction on how to participate.

I AM OFFERING 1 GIVEAWAY HERE

DeWit Garden Tools- Gift packet consisting of 3 tools

If you want to participate on this site, write a comment on how you envision using these tools your garden next year.

My suggestion is that as soon as you read this post and leave a comment that you run over to the other bloggers’ sites and participate in their contests.

A Reminder of Special Offer for Digging Deep, 10th Anniversary Edition

Just a few thoughts I want to share with you about DIGGING DEEP:

I chose to create an updated 10th Anniversary Edition. Originally when published in 2004, Digging Deep was groundbreaking. It was one of the first books – if not the first – that used gardening as a conduit for experiencing creativity as a rich and dynamic lifetime journey.

Digging Deep works with you from the inside/out on designing the garden and life of your dreams. My 7 Stages of Creative Awakening will take you through the steps of removing self-doubt and replacing it with strategies that will help you trust your instincts, let your imagination run wild, take risks, envision, reclaim your playfulness, and live the life you’re meant to—one filled with joy, well-being, and creativity.

Overflowing with tips, exercises, and resources, this instructive and inspirational guide is even more vital in today’s technology obsessed culture than when originally published. As we spend more time indoors and at the computer, we are becoming increasingly ‘nature deprived’.

The results from a recent survey funded by Disney revealed that 65% of U.S. parents see it as a “very serious” problem that kids are not spending more time outdoors. Parents concerns about nature are only second to bullying, the quality of education, and obesity.

ENDORSEMENTS FOR DIGGING DEEP FROM TOP SPIRITUALITY, MIND-BODY MEDICINE FIELD, GARDENING, and CREATIVITY FIELD HAVE BEEN PHENOMENAL.

Here is some of what is being written about Digging Deep:

This book has heaven’s kiss of inspiration upon it! Fran Sorin is a muse, revealing how the art of gardening powerfully activates the creative force within, invigorating and unifying us in body, mind, and spirit.”   ~ Michael Bernard Beckwith, author of Life Visioning

Digging Deep teaches the art of living creatively–from envisioning and creating the garden of your dreams to cultivating and embodying more imagination, passion, and play in your daily life. A profound and inspiring book.”   ~ Andrew Weil, M.D., author of Spontaneous Happiness

“Captivating and enchanting! Fran Sorin understands that a garden should be a playground for our imaginations, and a place that is as lively, entertaining, and ever-changing as our own creative spark. A must-read for anyone who wishes to find themselves in the garden–and for everyone who didn’t know they could.”  ~ Amy Stewart, author of The Drunken Botanist

Digging Deep strikes a deep chord about the sacred act of gardening and humankind’s primal need to get our hands in the earth and connect with nature. For Fran Sorin, gardening is a playful ritual that transcends our normal consciousness–it’s pure rapture and a profound tool for creating meaning and beauty. Digging Deep is a spiritual treasure.” ~ Fr. Richard Rohr, O.F.M., author of Eager to Love

“Fran Sorin’s seven-step process can help anyone cultivate a happier, more fulfilled and joyful life.”  ~ Lama Surya Das, author of Buddha Standard Time

Digging Deep is a gardening bible for the disbeliever–a gentle and inspiring guide to the spiritual journey awaiting you in your own backyard. Beautiful, helpful, and wise.” ~Karen Maezen Miller, author of Paradise in Plain Sight

If you want to read more endorsements, click on the Kindle book page, then click on the image of the book on the left hand side to look inside. I’m also thrilled to say that there are several beautiful endorsements from the garden bloggers who are participating in this giveaway.

To sum up my special offer on the updated 10th Anniversary Edition of Digging Deep, I will be offering the e-book for .99 through the duration of the giveaway. After that, it returns to its normal price.

ON A FINAL NOTE: GOOD LUCK AND SHARE THIS CELEBRATION WITH EVERYONE YOU KNOW!!

Good luck in winning one of these fantastic prizes. I hope you have as much fun being at the party as I had putting it together. A huge thank you to all of the bloggers and participating companies for their generosity of spirit.

It may feel counter-intuitive to share the post with all of your friends on social media when you’re trying to win a prize BUT the universe works differently. The more generous and sharing you are, the more you get in return!!

SO SHARE and SHARE MORE. It feels good AND who knows how the universe is going to reward you???

P.S. For those of you who have already shared on previous post, don’t worry. IF you have signed up for the newsletter in upper right hand corner of home page, your name will automatically be eligible for the prizes.

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