I have always wanted to start a commonplace book. For several months I have been collecting inspirational and encouraging quotes on index cards. This project started because I wanted a store of encouragement to share with my teenage son. Words of affirmation and encouragement are one of his two primary love languages. Sometimes, though, with teens, it seems that we are talking at them more than we are talking to them. When he was going through a rough patch I started jotting down encouraging quotes on index cards and putting them on his desk or on his pillow. I usually try to give him a couple of cards a week. This got me thinking about commonplace books and the possibility of starting one. But my collection was all to give away. It seemed like a lot more work to make something permanent.

Over the past few days the pieces have started to come together. Last weekend, at a local Scandinavian festival, I found a hand tooled leather journal and bought it on a whim. I love beautiful journals and pens. I didn’t have a purpose for this book yet, but just thought it was beautiful and wanted to support the organization who brought the hand crafts in to sell from individuals in the Philippines. Yes, we live in a global village when you can buy a hand made journal from the Philippines at a Scandinavian festival in Portland.


Another exciting event: three lovely bloggers recently invited me to participate in the three day quote challenge.What is this? It is an opportunity to post 3 quotes for 3 consecutive days, and also to nominate 3 new blogs each day. What a great opportunity to search through my quotes, discover new ones, share the fun with you, and perhaps make the first entry in my new journal, about to become a commonplace book.

Many, many thanks to serenasinclair, Lulu, and Fluffy Girl. Three wonderful and inspiring blogs.  Serena writes from the heart about lifelong learning and self discovery. Lulu writes touchingly on recovering from eating disorders. Fluffy girl has a heart warming blog that touches  on diverse topics including faith, music, life and love. Grab your favorite snack or beverage and enjoy a few moments of soul time, while giving these blogs a read.

Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people. Eleanor Roosevelt
I love the above quote because if we are only building people up with our words, gossip sessions don’t tend go on for hours. I wonder why this is?  Wouldn’t it be a wonderful experience to speak loving, life affirming words to and about others for 10 or 20 minutes every day! After speaking well of people, conversations can quickly move on to discussions centered on events and ideas.
To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment. Ralph Waldo Emerson

These words are a great reminder that there are many voices out there trying to make us into what they want us to be. A consumer, a follower, a member of the party that votes  the party line. But in the midst of all the confusion and babble we need to stay strong and centered to our authentic selves and to the good purpose for which we were created.


If you can keep your head when all about you
    Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
    But make allowance for their doubting too;
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
    Or being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or being hated, don’t give way to hating,
    And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise:
If you can dream—and not make dreams your master;
    If you can think—and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
    And treat those two impostors just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
    Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
    And stoop and build ’em up with worn-out tools:
If you can make one heap of all your winnings
    And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
    And never breathe a word about your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
    To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
    Except the Will which says to them: ‘Hold on!’
If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
    Or walk with Kings—nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
    If all men count with you, but none too much;
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
    With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
    And—which is more—you’ll be a Man, my son!
                                                                              Rudyard Kipling

This poem speaks for itself!

Three nominated bloggers: (If this is not your thing please just ignore this post:) )

The Little Worrier Blog

In The Zone

Nicky’s Day With Autism

#7 Day Daily Post Challenge: Day 7