Category Archives: Love

Remains To Be Seen

Adrienne Crowther
Adrienne Crowther

Let’s face it – no one likes to talk about death. Whether it’s our own, our parents, a spouse, or a friend, it hasn’t been a conversation topic of choice…..until now. Not surprisingly, we baby boomers are re-inventing our end of life practices and attitudes around death.

Here are the facts:

  • Cremation rates have soared to more than 40% of all deaths (close to 90% in some states)
  • Burial costs have reached high, sometimes unaffordable levels
  • Families are transient, and family members no longer live in close proximity to each other, nor to a family burial site
  • Religious tenets are more flexible regarding cremation as an option for disposition

Many recent articles, books, and other media point toward the growing number of cremations, both in the US and worldwide. Baby boomers especially, are breaking tradition in their spiritual beliefs, environmental convictions, and affinity toward individuality in all aspects of life. The funeral industry concedes to this rapid conversion to cremation, yet products for containment of cremation remains are limited, and are often mass-produced and outsourced.

Shine on Brightly
Shine on Brightly

Shine On Brightly is an online company that was launched in 2008 – the result of a lifelong passion for art, love for people and their stories, and lots of research on the changing trends around life and death rituals (especially among baby boomers). Fifteen months later, Founder and Owner, Adrienne Crowther lost her husband of 30 years. Nine months after that, his sister, who had been one of her dearest childhood friends, also died.  Adrienne’s work and business is truly unique and I thought it appropriate to address this subject for our oops50.blog.

Annice and dad
Annice and dad

What are your plans? When my own father died in 2011, I was grateful that he had taken care of all his burial plans.  Everything carefully outlined and paid for- in advance.  What a gift that was to all of us.  And what an alternative Adrienne has to offer to both the living  who want to plan their end of life rituals, or for those who will be making arrangement for their  loved ones.

On Becoming a Grandmother-to-Be!

Jane Okay:  we’ve seen the ultrasound pictures.  It’s official:  my daughter is pregnant.  My first-born baby girl, who cannot possibly be old enough to be a mother, is going to have a baby sometime in early December.  Hello, Jane, this is real life!  Take it in:  Lizzie is actually a grown woman, married to a very sweet grown man, and now she is going to have a real baby.  As you can see, I’m having trouble believing this.  But don’t get me wrong:  all this difficulty getting my brain to believe the news does not mean I’m not excited.  In fact, the opposite is true.  I’m so excited I can hardly stand it.  I may have moments of worrying about her nutrition or her labor or her financial state (because babies turn into expensive little beings), but the overwhelming emotion in my heart and soul is complete and total excitement because, here’s the real important news:  I’m going to be a grandmother!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  (It’s all about me!)  

Come December, there is going to be a little baby in our family, and that wonderful thought blocks out all my worries about anything (I know:  this kind of thinking has gotten me in trouble in the past!).  Best of all, this baby is one I won’t have to stress over so much (the way I obsessively did with our 4) because I won’t be responsible in a sleepless night kind of way for this baby’s reading ability or spirituality or even its dental health!  My only job will be to love it and love it and love it some more!  How amazing and wonderful is that?

Enough said for now. I’ll just share a picture of my girl when she herself was a baby, a mere 26 years ago, so you can share my amazement about this event.  Stay tuned!  I have a feeling I’m going to be blogging about this event a lot!

Lizzie with our beloved Rufus
Lizzie with our beloved Rufus, 1987

P.S.  Tom says I never mention him in the blog, so I will report this:  Gramps is pretty excited himself!!!!!  And, by the way, that’s Tom on the floor in the picture, showing the effects of sleepless nights with Lizzie, the miraculous baby who never slept.  (I wonder what her baby will be like!  Is she in for some karma?  Mean , mean grandmother!!).

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Flying Solo on Valentine’s Day – You’re Not Alone

Barbara Brady
Barbara Brady

Faith Popcorn, a marketing expert who predicts future trends, has predicted  “the rise of the solo citizen,” or what she calls “Single-Arity”. 

“In the last decade single households have increased by 30 percent worldwide.  Single is the new black.  Single culture will define the mainstream trends of tomorrow.  Single status is now being celebrated, and in 2012 China created “Singles Day” to honor its growing solo population.

We all know that we can feel loneliest when we’re in a relationship that just doesn’t feel right. When you’re flying solo, you can choose how you feel.  You can be “alone”, yet content and happy.  When we base our happiness on external conditions, like whether or not we have a wonderful mate, it’s hopeless.  So, whether you’re solo or coupled, decide to be happy now.  

Give yourself the gifts of self-care and self-love.  Today…

 ~ Eat some delectable, high quality chocolate.  Chocolate raspberry truffles, chocolate, chocolate chip cookies, warm chocolate croissants.  Chocolate stimulates the release of endorphins that generate feelings of pleasure and promotes a sense of well being.

Chocolate Raspberry Truffles
Chocolate Raspberry Truffles

~ Call a favorite friend or family member and tell them what you love and appreciate about them. Thank them for being in your life.

~ Indulge in a luxurious lavender bubble bath, light some candles and put on your favorite, relaxing music.

Oops50: woman-in-bubble-bath
A Bubble Bath

 

~ Relax with homemade buttered popcorn and a fun inspiring movie that speaks to self-love and living life fully, like “Eat, Pray, Love”, “Shirley Valentine” or  “How Stella Got Her Groove Back”.

~ Write yourself a love letter.  Tell yourself how much you love and appreciate YOU.  Don’t worry – no one has to see it. 🙂

~ Consider planning a self-marriage ceremony.  

~ Relish your time with self.  In treating yourself lovingly, you’re telling the universe this is how you expect to be treated by others.  

“I got to thinking about relationships. There are those that open you up to something new and exotic, those that are old and familiar, those that bring up lots of questions, those that bring you somewhere unexpected, those that bring you far from where you started, and those that bring you back.  But the most exciting, challenging and significant relationship of all is the one you have with yourself.  And if you can find someone to love the you, you love, well, that’s just fabulous.” Carrie from Sex and the City

Warmly,

Barbara

Barbara Brady

Coach & Trainer, Global Leadership / Intercultural / Transformation through Transition

barbara@mycoachbarbara.com

www.mycoachbarbara.com

 

No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it.

Albert Einstein

If Only For a Second

Sadhvi
Sadhvi

As a young woman I mostly remember feeling too fat, too rubinesque, too tall, too feminine… I was an independent and carefree spirit who didn’t need anyone to be happy on this planet and looking so striking made me nervous.

Looking back at the pictures of my youth, I see a stunning and beautiful smiling face looking at the camera, always laughing and having a good time.

Now that I’m older I feel more vain and aware of my looks, as if what is left of my “beauty” is fading fast.

It’s kind of ridiculous really.

Take a look at the clip below, please.  It’s from the Mimi Foundation.

I cried and cried because here I am, feeling vain about my youthful beauty that I never appreciated, while the women and men who have lost their hair and their carefree existence thanks to cancer, have nothing to look forward too.

Young Sadhvi
Young Sadhvi

And then I cried some more because I’ve recently lost my dear Aunt Ellie to cancer, and Frannie, and Melinda’s mom…and I just have to accept that I need to fall apart once in a while.  I like to cry, and have been finding it hard to let go lately.

So I’m drying my eyes and I’m feeling more fragile and more human and more thankful for this gift called life.

Because that is exactly what it is – a present every single day.

Thank You to those at the Mimi Foundation for doing this project.