Sunday, June 11, 2006

The Tea House Times

There is a wonderful newsletter that I had discovered and I want to share it with you. If you are a Tea Lover this is right up your alley. It's a beautiful color coated page after page turner with interesting articles and musings. I have an article that I will post soon that is in the July/August edition. If you would like the website, just click on The Tea House Times under the links to the right and enjoy.

Friday, June 09, 2006

June Column

Mothballs In My Attic
By Cindy O’Neill JUNE COLUMN
Graduations and Father’s Day highlight this month. Graduations reflect an ending of an accomplishment but yet special feelings associated with a new beginning. It’s the moving from one phase of your life to an open door to the future. Father’s Day holds many feelings that are personal and more reflective to a different place and time. Father’s Day can encompass the working Dad who spent many a night at the office, the fishing Dad, handyman Dad, sports Dad, the Mr. Mom Dad, the "like a Dad to me" Dad, the grass cutting Dad or the dearly departed Dad. It’s a feeling of your Dad or Pops or Father who sits in a favorite chair or a Dad who spends time in the garage with his favorite hobby. It’s the traveling Dad who comes home with treats in his pockets or the Military Dad who was missed for so long. Remember the smells and feelings and special moments that just pop up in your mind when you think of Dad. It’s right there waiting to be felt again. Whatever you are feeling, celebrate the man and remember a part of him, because he is a part of you.
Let the mothballs refresh your memory; enter your attic and open your trunk.
See what comes forward with a step back to a day in June....
Reflect back in June, remembering
Dad, Granddad and Graduations
Make a Father’s Day Card for someone you
Fill in the blanks with just one word, and see how the memories flood back. Take your time, this is not to be rushed but rather enjoyed. Remember all the feelings and visual sensations, and experience the places your mind travels.
My father’s favorite chair in the house was ___________________________.
Grandpa spent most of his time _____________________________________.
My high school graduation ceremony was held at _________________________
Sharing a MIMA Moment
Sharing feelings of the family men in your life lends itself to recollections.
What are one or two things that your Dad taught you?

Column based on Mothballs In My Attic, a new fun nostalgia book that contains over 220 questions within 12 chapters, poems and illustrations.
To order a book visit

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Mindfulness and Mothballs

Mindfulness and Mothballs:
What’s In Your Mental Attic?
mothball (môth bôl}
1. A marble-sized ball, originally of camphor
but now of naphthalene, stored with clothes to
repel moths.
2. A condition of long storage for possible
future use.
3. To store for long periods.
What's in your mental attic?
We mothball millions of memories, most of which will never be retrieved. Whenever we do remember something,
we are reinforcing the neural pathways in the brain. Think of it as keeping a jungle path cleared so we can traverse
it any time we choose.
Flexing our memories is a powerful way to develop brain elasticity. In addition, the more we skip along those neural pathways in random order, the more connections we are creating.
I've recently discovered a great way to systematically clear those vine-covered paths by answering questions that
inspire a bit of bushwhacking.
Cindy O'Neill got together with her sister, Barbara Iderosa,
to create a spiral-bound book of fill-in-the-blank questions designed
to spark memories and lead to conversation and connection.
The book is called "Mothballs In My Attic" and it is being used by activity planners, facilities directors, staff and volunteers who work with our growing aging population. It's become a simple,
valuable tool for those who need a structured--but enjoyable--memory
But you don't have to be old to benefit from a little brain jostling. This book is a fun centerpiece for any gathering of family members or the perfect catalyst for sharing among friends.

To be honest, I hesitated to read the questions at first, knowing that
they would certainly stir up memories of my childhood. That's great if you had a happy one, but not so great if you'd rather forget about, say, the time your grandmother tried to strangle you with a dishtowel
(she was suffering from dementia at the time).
What a relief to discover that, instead of stirring up the yucky
stuff, this little book actually highlighted some long-forgotten
happy memories.
I remembered some wonderful things about my grandmother, like the way she smelled, the songs she loved to
sing, and even details like the embroidered handkerchiefs she
always kept stashed in her purse and the way she read a certain bedtime story.
As the years pass, we tend to create an overall memory image--"good" or "bad"--but rarely can our entire
childhood or a relationship with one person be seen in such black and white terms. "Mothballs In My Attic" helped me gain perspective on a particularly painful time in my life and allowed me to paint a a more realistic picture of the way things were.
Instead of keeping our memories packed in boxes in our mental attic,
we can benefit from opening up the dustiest ones and airing things out. We're likely to find some delightful surprises while we're poking around.
Yes, mindfulness is about paying attention to the present moment,
but there's a whole lot to discover when we look at the past in a
nonjudgmental way. We can use our memories--especially the
ones we've got packed in mothballs--to help us develop clarity and

Cindy refers to these little strolls down memory lane as
"MIMA moments" in reference to the title of her book. But
I've got my own name for them. I like to think of them as "My, My"
moments. It's as though I have my grandmother standing
beside me (no dishtowel) and saying, "My, My...isn't that
Indeed, it is. And the closer we look--while suspending judgment--the more clearly we see it.
Poke around in your mental attic,and dig into those boxes packed
with mothballs. You're bound to have some "My, My" moments
of your own.

Your Secr*t Assignment:
Poking Around
This week, poke around in your mental attic and see what you've got buried in dusty boxes up there.
Here is a sampling of questions from the "Mothballs In My Attic" book to help you along...
"The funniest thing that happened on a car trip was ___."
"I shared my deep dark secrets with ____."
"I loved buying ___ from the ice cream truck."
"My friend, ____, had the best tree to climb."
"My mother always shopped at the____ supermarket."
Why not order this book for yourself--and your loved ones? It's a
fun way to connect with others at your next gathering.
Just go to:<><><><><><><><><><><><><>

Maya Talisman Frost/ Stop by Maya's website to have a wonderful experience.

Awaken Your Senses

Awakening Awareness

It's not hard to be mindful.
It's just hard to REMEMBER to be mindful!
Awakening Awareness™
is a course designed to help you pay attention
to various triggers throughout your day
in order to get in the habit of being mindful.
If you're ready for a simple, fun and powerful way
to learn how to pop into mindfulness mode whenever you choose, just click on the Real World Training Link and you be directed to this wonderful web site.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

showers, fresh air and daffodils *Plant some flower seeds and watch them grow
The flowers planted around our house were ______________________________________
Smell the fresh scent, our clothesline was located _______________________________
I used a _______________________________as a marker for sidewalk hopscotch.

Sharing a MIMA Moment
Sharing your world with Mother Nature is a vast experience.
What are some of your favorite things to do in the Spring season

Friday, June 02, 2006


My new friend Maya has written such a beautiful awakening of my book Mothballs In My Attic. Maya's web site is and there are so many things to explore. If you check out the Friday ezine articles you can read what she wrote about Mothballs In My Attic. This is my first blog spot and i'm happy to share it with Maya Talisman Frost. Thanks Maya, you inspired me to start a blog spot.