On Choosing The Perfect Gift

gift horse

Hand carved carousel horse from Kingsport, Tennessee

“His gifts have the virtue of mortality which spares me the burden of display or storage.”—Marcel Proust, ‘Swan’s Way’—

The great philosopher, Robert Hicks, made me aware of this quote several years ago. I have since tried to use it when choosing a gift—especially one for the wealthy or elderly.

Mr. Hicks explained, “If someone gives you a special gift such as a painting, a figurine, or something special, you will have to consider where or if it should be displayed. This may be a burden, especially if your gift display areas are already cluttered with other special and one-of-a-kind gifts. The gift carries with it a responsibility—we are not allowed to sell it, and it could be perilous to convert it into a gift for another person. This would mean that we are burdened with the duty of storage and, perhaps, periodic display.”

When choosing a gift, then, it may be important to consider the “mortality level” of the gift. Flowers serve their purpose and are disposed of. Chocolates may be consumed. What other ideas do you have for consumable or disposable gifts?

Keep on Smiling.
Everything is going to be all right.
John P. Schulz—“Sweetie Drives on Chemo Days.”

What’s On The Other Side Of Fear?


The other side of fear

“Ultimately we know deeply that the other side of fear is freedom.”
–Marilyn Ferguson
Are everyday fears keeping you from enjoying the moment? Are specific fears slowing down the attainment of your goals?
To start with, recognize those fears. Point a finger at each one of them and say, “I know you.” Then caress the fears gently and set them aside. Move on to the other side of the fears. Find freedom from their chains. Enjoy your life.

And keep on smiling.
Everything is going to be all right
John P. Schulz—“Sweetie Drives on Chemo Days.”

Worried? Afraid? Follow these instructions…



Find the problem. Identify it. Give it a name. deal with it

“It makes no sense to worry about things you have no control over because there’s nothing you can do about them, and why worry about things you do control? The activity of worrying keeps you immobilized.”
–Wayne Dyer
This quote gives you a way in which to categorize and handle your worry load. You need to isolate the items that you cannot do anything about and realize that there is no reason to worry about them for that reason.
And then—then you need to make a list of the items on your worry list that can be controlled and go down that list, carefully taking care of one item at a time. As you remove each item you will become more and more motivated to complete the job. If you need help with the list, ask for it.

And keep on smiling
Everything is going to be all right.
John P. Schulz—“Sweetie Drives on Chemo Days.”

Don’t spoil any of it…

sharing and planning


“Pick the day. Enjoy it – to the hilt. Enjoy the day as it comes. Enjoy People as they come…The past, I think, has helped me appreciate the present and I don’t want to spoil any of it by fretting about the future.”
–Audrey Hepburn
I love this quote and I love Sundays. I can look back at the week gone by and quietly celebrate the good things that happened. I can rest and ponder. I think about my friends and loved ones and wish them well. I form positive plans and strategies for the coming week.
As Audrey said, “Appreciate the present.”
And as for the future–
Everything is going to be all right.
Keep on smiling

John P. Schulz—“Sweetie Drives on Chemo Days.”

What Can Be Done About It?

Try again

When the project fails, ask whether it was worth it or not and if the answer is “yes”–Try again.

“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: It is the courage to continue that counts.”
Winston Churchill

This is an example of applied optimism. Look for the bright side. Work toward a successful completion of your project. Figure out how to solve or correct your problem. Examine whatever is making you unhappy and deal with it.
And if you do all of that and fail? Well, then, summon up the courage to start all over again and go after it.

And whatever you do–Keep on smiling…
Everything is going to be all right

John P. Schulz—“Sweetie Drives on Chemo Days.”

It’s In There Somewhere

It's in there somewhere

It’s in there somewhere–I know it is.

“A rock pile ceases to be a rock pile the moment a single man contemplates it, bearing within him the image of a cathedral.”
Antoine de Saint-Exupery
What sort of rock pile faces you today? Is it a creative challenge or perhaps a wall that you must make your way over, under, around, or through? Maybe there is one special rock in there that needs your attention.
A cathedral is built one rock at a time—with a vision. Your journey through the day is best traveled one step at a time—with a smile, a little love, and a chuckle.
Have a wonderful day

“Everything is going to be all right.”
John P. Schulz—“Sweetie Drives on Chemo Days.”


And, from my brother Tom…
Thought you might like this John
“No pessimist ever discovered the secret of the stars, or sailed to unchartered land, or opened a new doorway for the human spirit.” – Helen Keller
Let’s open some freakin’ doors, shall we?

Practice Til You Get It Right


Excellence is attained, not found. Confidence comes with practice.

“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.”
Think about that. “We are what we repeatedly do.” This means that if we laugh a lot, laughing becomes a habit. It would follow, then, that happiness would become a habit. Practicing optimism is the key to becoming a happy and accepting person.

Practice sharing a smile
“Everything is going to be all right.”

John P. Schulz—“Sweetie Drives on Chemo Days.”

Three Things That Improve With Practice…

The lady is happy

Practice three things–Love, Hope, Optimism

“My friends, love is better than anger. Hope is better than fear. Optimism is better than despair. So let us be loving, hopeful, and optimistic. We can change the world.”
–Jack Layton
Help others by setting an example. Welcome love, hope, and optimism into your own life. These qualities will become a skill set and your abilities will improve with practice. Good health and happiness will be your reward.

My friend Shannen has been fighting cancer for over eight years. She always has a smile, a hug, and a plan for the future. Practice, practice, practice

Share a smile
Everything is going to be all right
John P. Schulz—“Sweetie Drives on Chemo Days.”

Be Totally Selfish Today

“The best way to cheer yourself up is to try to cheer somebody else up.”—Mark Twain—
Let us be selfish today. Let’s do something that makes us feel good. A random act of kindness or extending a kindness toward a friend will elevate our own spirits. It works every time. And like Mark Twain said, try to cheer somebody else up. It will make you happy.
John P. Schulz

And share a smile as you perform your selfish deeds
Everything is going to be all right
John P. Schulz

be kind

Today, be selfish–by being kind

Leave something behind

something left behind

My brother Tom sent me this a while back:

“Everyone must leave something behind when he dies, my grandfather said. A child or a book or a painting or a house or a wall built or a pair of shoes made. Or a garden planted. Something your hand touched some way so your soul has somewhere to go when you die, and when people look at that tree or that flower you planted, you’re there. It doesn’t matter what you do, he said, so long as you change something from the way it was before you touched it into something that’s like you after you take your hands away. The difference between the man who just cuts lawns and a real gardener is in the touching, he said. The lawn-cutter might just as well not have been there at all; the gardener will be there a lifetime.” –Ray Bradbury—

And always share a smile
Everything is going to be all right
John P. Schulz

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