Category Archives: Uncategorized

The Parable of the Ship Mechanic


atkins-bookshelf-educationA prominent shipping line faced a critical problem: their largest shipping vessel, responsible for transporting millions of dollars of cargo each month, was stuck at the dry dock with a failed engine. Each day the ship was not at sea was costing the company more than $100,000 per day. The shipping company called in all the best ship engine mechanics in the area. Four different mechanics came in and attempted to make repairs to no avail; they left completely stumped. After three weeks, and spending $40,000 on recommended repairs, the ship’s engine did not work.

The ship’s captain finally remembered the name of a retired ship engine mechanic who had an impeccable reputation. No matter how severe the engine problem was, it was said, Benjamin could fix it. After several phone calls, the captain reached him. Benjamin arrived the next day, and although he was twice the age of the previous mechanics, he promptly…

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The Ability to Compromise

I believe I have many positive qualities I bring to all of my relationships in my life, be they with my coworkers, friends, family, or a boyfriend.  As we mature we refine our qualities and everyone in our life helps to either buff or hone those qualities as needed.

I think one key quality to any lasting relationship is the ability to compromise.  And recently I’ve noticed a lot of compromising going on at my end of the relationship.  A few examples:

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I Said “No”

My 15 year old daughter is a freshman in high school.  In one of her classes she has to rewrite and memorize a “slam poem” (don’t ask me, I have no clue what it is and I haven’t gotten around to Googling it yet). Continue reading →


It’s 10pm and I’m two hours away from home attending an all night, indoor softball tournament with my teenage daughter’s travel team.  Our second game doesn’t start until 1:30am so I’m hanging out in the hotel lobby where most of the team and parents are staying.

I love people watching, and I especially love listening to the random snippets of conversation that flow my way:

“Look, Speedo Guy is back!”

“That Super Bowl commercial with the baby/monkey/dog face swap thingamabob creeped me out!”

“I ordered pasta and they gave me four orders of hot wings.  I still don’t think this will fill me up.”

“You’re eating jalapenos?  Third base is going to be napalmed tonight!”

(In a loud whisper) “Don’t get on the elevator with Speedo Guy!”

“Where’s Coach?”  (Someone answers that he’s in the bathroom.)  “Oh man, he’s gonna be gone for 20 minutes and I feel sorry for anyone who enters that bathroom now!”

“The whip cream tastes waxy.”

And something I didn’t expect to hear from my 15 year old daughter:

“I’m going to go heat up my coffee.”

It’s just the beginning of a long night.  I think I’ll take my daughter’s lead and have another cup myself.

I’m Still Here

It’s been a long time since I’ve attended to my blog.  Life takes over sometimes, and when I started my blog in the past I was hung up on such things as, “What should my blog be about?  Am I supposed to stick to one main theme?  How personal can I get and what shouldn’t I talk about?”

All of those concerns and many more prevented me from JUST BLOGGING.  There are many blogs out there that are themed-based, and that’s ok.  I like those blogs and follow many of them specifically because of the themes they blog about.

I’m not that specific.  My mind goes in a thousand different directions and I want to chat about all of them – sometimes.  That’s another hang-up; being too closed-off.  But I think it’s time I just let it all out there, consequences be damned, and hopefully experience a euphoric release of a mind full of topics in a world willing to soak them up.

So get ready, world.  I’m about to open the gates.  Let’s see what charges out, shall we?

a creative lifestyle blog

One Mile Smile

by Sarah Clouser

Mind of Chaos

How easy it would be, to sit here, telling the world that my struggles were all due to outside sources, that my 2am, scattered-sleep nights were caused by a destructive family life, or the villainous boys I met in high school. How easy it would be to place the blame on undeserved circumstances. I am a strong believer in the “we make our own choices” concept of life, and that life does not discriminate in placing innocent people, in hard paths of being. For me, the life-defining choice was to allow myself to fall victim to my own mind, and for my inside, tyrannical anxiety, to control my outside actions. That moment, whenever it might have been, has visited me in nightmare-like ways, all throughout my young adulthood.

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