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A couple months ago I opened a current issue of Bella Grace, a magazine of inspiration and part journal.  Love this publication. It is only three years old, but it will be around for a very long time.  Wish I would have noticed it much sooner.  It inspires and encourages calm, peaceful, simpler living; and appreciation, respect, and love of others.

I also receive the blog Grace Notes, and today read an awesome post by Elle Harris “Love Letter to a Single Friend.”  It can be for someone who never found that special someONE, or did but lost them, even anyone to realize the importance of the gift of them to others who love them.  It is beautifully written and I hope you will take a few minutes to read it then pass it on to others in your life.

http://bellagracemagazine.com/blog/love-letter-to-a-single-friend/

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Ann Marquette

Heart

You opened your arms to welcome me
You spoke as to a friend
You smiled as we passed
Your heart whispered,
As it flowed alongside mine
“Come Home”

Your charm and beauty inspire me
Your soul reaches out and touches me
Your spirit fills me with endless possibilities, and
Calls Me Home

You wrap me in a warm embrace,
As if a long parted lover
You fill me with joy and comfort
A sense deep inside, that you are
Calling Me Home.

© September 11, 2007

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As you now know, my Personal Time Away was not just retreating away from Facebook, my blog, and emails.  It was a literal journey to attend The Sun Magazine writers retreat in the Berkshire Mountains of Rowe, Ma.  I actually drove over 1,000 miles each way, dividing it up into three days.  Part of my reason for driving and taking my time was so I could stop along the way and visit a friend in North Carolina, and my cousin in Maryland.  I did stop overnight in Greenville, SC on the return journey.

I actually took a digital note recorder so I could record some details and my thoughts along the way. Now I can go back, listen to them and see if anything worth adding to my posts about this journey.

Wednesday morning, May 30th I packed up my 4Runner and headed out around 9am, with my cup of Starbucks.  It is a lovely sunny day with a few white clouds in the sky.  I prayed for a safe and easy drive; and I knew I had others praying for me during this journey.

Somewhere near 11:30 am I stopped off in Greenville SC where I filled up the tank at Sam’s Club for $3.06 a gallon.   Then I went to Whole Foods and got a light lunch, which I ate there before going across the street to get a Starbucks refill for the road.  Before starting off again I activated the GPS unit loaned to me by Denise from work.  I set the destination for the hotel address in Greensboro NC where I was staying over for the night.  This gave me the opportunity to visit Peggy, a dear lady friend who recently turned 92.

I arrived at the hotel late afternoon, checked in and asked the receptionist where she would recommend for dinner.  She told me Darryl’s Wood Fired Grill right next door was really good.  So off I went…and wow!  What a great restaurant, with unique decor and great food.

Then it was off to spend some time with Peggy.  We had not seen each other for a few years and although she now lives in assisted living and has some difficulty with memory she looks great.  She did remember me when I walked in and we had a very nice visit.  Such a sweet lady.  Wish I didn’t live so far away from her so I could visit more often.

That was day one of the journey.  Now on this day of writing it is late and time to close up for the night.

Darryl’s Table Ad by ann marquette

Darryl’s Wood Fired Grill by ann marquette

 

The Carousel Table by Ann Marquette

 

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Remembering a dear friend I am reposting this, which I wrote for my friend Terri who passed away in 2006…

I didn’t know you well
I didn’t know you long
But, you became a friend
And, you inspired me

Your kindness and caring
Even through your pain
Your strength, courage, and faith
Amazed and inspired me

Your sweet nagging
To keep writing
To finish the next book
Made my heart smile
You inspired me

I miss you Sweet Lady
Yet you are always
A part of me
In my heart
A beautiful memory
My Inspiration Angel

© December 11, 2006

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A lit Yahrtzeit candle, a candle that is lit o...

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Reposting this one, also remembering my friend, Smita. She was a candle in my life.

Oh life of mine… you are the path God has set me upon.

The paths have been crooked, winding, jagged, straight,
narrow and wide, flat and steep.

Some of the paths have been bright and some very dark.

Yet all along the way “He” has gifted me with many to light my way…
family members, many who are also friends, strangers who became friends,
and some souls who passed through this life of mine to guide a step or two,
then went on their way.

The last several years have been the beginning of a brand new life, a brand new path.
I have closed the gates to past issues, and so many new gates have opened along this
new path I have chosen.

My spirit has come alive on this path.
As in the past, new friends have come lighting the way
These friends are the Candles in my Life.

Thank you dear God, for these blessings.

Copyright 2003

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Heart

Image via Wikipedia

I am reposting this piece, and will repost more about friendships/relationships as I remember my friend Smita who passed away on Friday, June 10, 2011.

Friends are the richest blessings we can have.
When we accept a new friend into our lives, we must take them as they are…warts and wonders.
Our friends must be given the freedom to come and go in and out of our lives, as they see fit for themselves.
Yet, when we feel a great need to share a thought, feeling, or time with a friend we should let them know…especially to let them know we care for

and love them.
Some friends are like leaves on a tree, and the time comes for them to fall away from our lives and move on to become friends with others. We each leave a part of ourselves with the other.
Other friends are like rocks, here to stay with us through thick and thin…all the days of our lives.
Friendships, long or short-term, should be cherished and tended as the most valuable gift we have in life.

September 2003

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I started this last night, Friday, June 10th…
Words, where are they? I am behind in posting. I would like to write something profound, but nothing is coming to me.
I am tired, yet feel calm and thoughtful. By thoughtful I mean it feels like there is something deep inside which I need to find and bring to the surface. I wonder what it is.
Until I can find it, I am grateful for many things. I am especially grateful for my friends and family.

NOW I KNOW WHY…
This evening there was a message on my friend Smita’s Facebook.

Smita and I became friends at least two years ago through Authors Den. We graduated to communicating directly via email, pretty much daily. She was Professor in English, Arts Faculty at the University of Allahabad, a poet and writer in English, a mother, lover of travelling to her beloved Himalayan mountains, and a friend. She has had health problems for some time and recently had to go to hospital for some tests because she was so bad and could barely breathe. She was told she could no longer go to the mountains; she could only walk for 10 minutes and then rest. She was able to go home to take her medicine and follow doctor’s orders.

Late Thursday night around 11:30 pm EST in the US and late Friday morning in India we had been emailing. She said she was doing ok, and was cooking for a friend who was going to be visiting. I wrote back asking her “What are you cooking?” I was so tired I shut down the computer and went to bed. I had to get up a bit early in the morning to get ready to take a friend to the hospital to have her defibrillator checked and turned out had to have it replaced there and then because it was not working correctly. She was finally approved to go home about 4:30pm. When I finally got home I was tired, had something to eat, and checked emails. Nothing from Smita, but as I said we would occasionally miss a day. I was going to check in with her today. But then I got an email notification of a message from her on Facebook.

I am Rahul, Smita’s son. My mother passed away on June 10, 2011, at 12 noon of a massive cardiac arrest.
Then her son told me that “her laptop was on when she was discovered… the chat window with you was open and she was asking you about commenting on her blog.”

I am very sad that I won’t hear from you anymore Smita and I miss you already. My days will have an empty place now without either an email or FB chat with you.  You were a blessing and a joy in my life, a good friend.  Yet I smile as I think of you now in a beautiful paradise, in peace, healthy, and knowing the love you were not sure of while you were here.  Love and hugs dear friend,

My Friend, Smita RIP

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