Picture by David Beatson

Friday, July 30, 2010

Happy Foto Friday!

Where dreams run wild...

image by Andre Gehrmann

Monday, July 26, 2010

Monday Motivational

Great moments are marked in history when an unlikely victor emerges against incredible odds. A young, unproven US Hockey Team, in the 1980 Olympics, was facing the hardened Soviets in a match that almost anyone would have expected to go to the Soviet Union. American amateurs and college stars facing a team of professionals with a winning streak that was almost expected. Coach Herb Brooks inspired his team before the game with these immortal words, “You were meant to be here. This is your time.”

No one quite understands what happens when desire, preparation and sheer tenacity come together. It creates momentum and hope and belief. And 20 young men who were never supposed to overcome one of the greatest teams in the world of hockey did it. Not only for their country, but for their families and themselves, and for anyone who has or ever will face a great challenge.

From values.com

Monday, July 19, 2010

Monday Motivational

very Tuesday and Thursday for the last 30 years, Albert has left his home at 5:50am to travel 90 minutes by bus to the Children’s Hospital in Pittsburgh, so he can shine shoes in the hospital’s lobby. He uses the very same shoeshine box he built in high school shop class when he was only 15 years old. Albert charges $3 per shine, and donates all his tips to the Children’s Free Care Fund, which ensures that all children receive medical care, regardless of a family’s financial ability to pay for it.

Since 1981, Albert has donated over $100,000 of his hard-earned tips to the Children’s hospital. His annual income is only about $10,000 and he donates approximately $10,000 a year to the hospital.

Albert is a remarkable example of the value of charity—he truly is an everyday hero.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Changing The World One Word At A Time

I found the following article very interesting:
By Linda Gabriel

If you have ever doubted the power of words to transform consciousness, consider this:

An early draft of the Declaration of Independence has a blurry word where Thomas Jefferson apparently changed his mind. Up until now historians have wondered what the earlier word was. Today a news item announced that scientists have solved the mystery.

“By examining the draft and the different wave lengths of light – a process known as hyper-spectral imaging – scientists discovered his original word was: ’subjects.’

But in a flash of inspiration while the ink was still wet he wiped it and wrote ‘citizens’ instead.

That was the moment, according to historians, that redefined the American colonists.” (You can read the original ABC News report here.)

Thomas Jefferson’s choice of words still resonates more than two centuries later. The transformational power of language, particularly “self-talk” is a favorite subject here at Thought Medicine.

What words might you change in order to transform your life?

What one word has changed your life? I think there is usually a word or phrase that affects me quarterly. I write it down or type it up and post it somewhere in my home where I can see it and gasp at the way it touches my soul.

"Subjects" vs. "Citizens" is a BIG change. And I believe, an inspired change straight from our Heavenly Father who loves us.

image courtesy of symonsez.wordpress.com

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Brady Gets His Eagle

The flashing lights and siren were hardly noticeable when the fire truck drove through the Lindon neighborhood. The hundred people standing on the sidewalk could only see Brady's smile. It was ear to ear.

• FOR YEARS, BRADY THOMPSON has wanted to be an Eagle Scout, the highest rank in the Boy Scouts of America. His parents, Lori and Darrell, can remember him asking about getting his Eagle for years. He's had several ideas for a project. A few that he's given to cousins, who have gone on to get their Eagle. But, something always came up, health or otherwise, preventing him from going through with his.

At the age of 3, Brady had his first seizure. He spent years traveling the country with his parents, looking for something that would cure him. They tried machines and medications. Some of them worked, but for only a short amount of time. At 15 years old, he asked his parents to put him on hospice care, something he has been on ever since. Despite having nearly 1,000 seizures every day, which has left his body weak and barely able to speak, Brady always knew when it was Tuesday. He would call Eric Redd, Troop 836 Scout leader, and say "When are we going?"

He was always on the go, said Redd, who was with him on several Scouting trips. No matter how bad his seizures got, he still tried to be a part of everything. He'd try to run down the hill to catch up with all the other boys and end up face first after a seizure. Once they had to tie him to a tree because they were too nervous to have him run around with all his seizures, laughed Redd.

"Brady has more Scout spirit in his big toe than most Scouts," said his Bishop, Star Hall. "He's probably done 10 Eagle Scout projects just because of his desire to be involved."

Brady completed all but one of the 21 merit badges required for an Eagle before he turned 14 years old -- an age the Thompsons mark when his health took a downturn. The single merit badge that kept him from getting his Eagle for several years was cycling. Because of the frequency of his seizures, Brady was unable to stay upright on a bike, making it nearly impossible to get a badge. Once they tried to take him up to Bridal Veil Falls and Brady ended up in the river at the base after he had a seizure and fell off the side of the bike. They even tried buying a recumbent bike for him. For a few months, he and Darrell would bike around the neighborhood, stopping every few minutes as Brady had seizure after seizure. Another alternate for the badge was hiking, but for similar reasons, he couldn't do that either.

Lori finally noticed the alternative of archery and took Brady to an archery class in Orem.

Archery was easier because he could shoot in between the seizures. Lori would stand beside him and grab the bow when he went into a seizure and when he came out of the seizure he was able to shoot. Archery was a more controlled environment that allowed him the time to have a seizure, recover from it and still be able to shoot the bow.

"He had no special treatment," Lori said. "We didn't want to give him a crutch of being disabled."

But, the Boy Scouts of America didn't accept the archery alternative because it hadn't been pre-approved by the council, which proved to be one road block in getting Brady's Eagle.

The other road block was Brady's age. One of the requirements of the Boy Scout Council is that the application for the project must be filed before the Scout turns 18. Brady turned 18 in November.

"We spent 13 years doing all this work toward it but we've spent the last four years to keep him alive," Darrell said.

Brady joined the special needs boy Scout group last year as a supplement to his traditional group. The group, which consists of about 40 people from a few dozen LDS stake centers, helps guide Scouts from ages 12 to 65 suffering from several illnesses.

"They just do everything slower," said special needs Scout leader Howard Bezzant.

The Scouts are assigned a youth counselor who helps guide them through the activities at a slower rate than the traditional groups.

"Youth counselors take their hand in theirs and walk them through everything or help them talk even if it's just a word at a time," Bezzant said.

When Skyler Trent, 17, was called to be a youth counselor through his church, he didn't really know Brady. But in the past year, the two young men have become extremely close. Trent wipes Brady's drool from his face, he helped guide him through Scout activities and even held him up during Scout dances.

"It's been the best experience of my teenage years," Trent said. "The special needs Boy Scouts "are always having fun and always smiling no matter what they are dealing with."

Chris Kearley didn't really know Brady until a few weeks ago. They'd never met, but she'd watched him ride in his Jeep Polaris for years in front of her house. She'd heard from Sheron Drake -- a neighbor and friend of the Thompsons -- that Brady had always wanted his Eagle but had run into setbacks. She thought about it for weeks and decided to do something about it, so she made a few phone calls to the local Boy Scout Council.

She was given the requirements of what she needed to get a packet together to get the application approved. She needed everything by the following afternoon when the council was meeting. Included in the packet, she needed three letters of recommendation. By midnight, that same night, she had 30.

"It took me four hours to write three paragraphs because I couldn't see the paper through my tears," said Eric Redd, who hand-delivered the letter to the Drake's house at midnight.

Normally it takes about three months for a Scout to complete the process of getting his Eagle but for Brady, it took two weeks. During the last week of June, Brady, with the help of neighbors, friends and family, painted more than 50 fire hydrants around his Lindon neighborhood for his Eagle project.

"Everyone has been waiting for this for so long that they were so excited to come out and help," Kearley said.

It wasn't much of a surprise for the Thompsons to see more than 100 people on their lawn ready to help paint.

"That's what Brady does," Darrell said, smiling.

During Brady's Court of Honor on Tuesday, packages of Kleenex were passed between aisles and sniffles punctuated each of the speakers as they spoke of how deserving he was of the award. He's selfless. A warrior. A true friend. Inspiring. In between seizures, he turned and smiled at Darrell, who wiped tears from his eyes. When it came time, Darrell grabbed him by the back of the arms and held him up as he walked to the podium.

"He was trying to stand so tall up there," Kearley said.

Brady, described as 10-foot tall and bulletproof, stood in front of the crowd as Skyler Trent pinned on his medal.

"I had goosebumps," Trent said. "Knowing that I was his friend and seeing all the respect that people had for him. It was emotional."

For many, Brady sets the perfect example of the Boy Scout oath, which starts, "On my honor, I will do my best."

No matter how hard Brady's life has been, he's always kept going. Always has done his best. And always kept smiling.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Monday Motivational

Despite losing his vision at the age of 13, Erik Weihenmayer has become one of the celebrated and accomplished athletes in the world. Re-defining what it means to be blind, Erik has transformed the image of blindness and opened up the minds of people around the world. He has never let his blindness interfere with his passion for an exhilarating and fulfilling life.

Erik was first introduced to rock climbing at a camp for blind teenagers and soon was climbing more difficult mountains. After he moved to Arizona, he decided to climb Denali in Alaska… and did so. At 20,320 it’s the highest peak in North America.

The challenges grew for Erik. He climbed the tallest mountains in South America and Africa and then set his sights on Mount Everest, the tallest mountain in the world. On May 25, 2001, Erik reached the top of Everest and stood at 29,035 feet. He was the first blind person to summit Everest. At the age of 34, Erik became one of less than 100 individuals to climb all of the Seven Summits – the highest peaks on each of the seven continents. He completed this incredible accomplishment on September 5, 2002 when he stood on top of Mt. Kosciusko in Australia. Erik continues to climb today, and more importantly demonstrates to others that blindness does not limit. In late 2004, he climbed with the blind founder and six blind students from the Tibetan school, Braille Without Borders. They hiked to 21,000 feet on a peak on the north side on Mount Everest; the highest altitude ever achieved by blind teenagers.

For more information about Erik and what he’s doing, visit www.touchthetop.com

Post from values.com

Friday, July 9, 2010

Happy Foto Friday

What were your dreams as a child?
Have you fulfilled them yet?
My advice: find a coloring book and crayons, sit down and color!
(I give you permission to color outside the lines).
Then send a message to the universe with your favorite picture/memory from childhood.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Monday Motivational

When forty five year old Randy Pausch was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer he chose to focus on living rather than dying. As a computer science professor at Carnegie Mellon University, Randy was asked to deliver a ‘last lecture’—a well-known tradition on campus that allowed for professors to take a break from academia and share worldly wisdom with students as if, hypothetically, they were dying and had one last lecture left to give. The only difference in Randy’s case is that Randy really was dying, a fact that only motivated him more. He agreed to deliver his last lecture, ‘Really Achieving Your Childhood Dreams’ on September 18, 2007 to a packed McConomy Auditorium.

Randy began by sharing several of his boyhood dreams—some which he had achieved and others he hadn’t. He describes the importance of having dreams and how you can still learn a lot by trying for your dreams even if you don’t always succeed. He shares the values he has learned through his experiences that he hopes to pass on to others: integrity, honesty, character, hard work, laughter and gratitude.

Randy’s last lecture received so much praise and attention that he agreed to turn it into a book by the same name. It quickly became a best seller, outlining Randy’s lifelong philosophy and revealing the ultimate source of his motivation—his three young children.

Randy Pausch passed away July 25, 2008, but he continues to motivate us all, encouraging us to never give up on our childhood dreams.

From values.com

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Friday, July 2, 2010

Happy Foto Friday

Where will your dreams take you? Shout your dreams out to the universe and see what comes back!

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