Celebrating Liz

Hi Folks:

Mike’s sister Liz passed away 23 years ago today. Her greatest legacy is her children, who have grown up to be remarkable people in their own right. Liz was also a talented writer; unfortunately none of her stories are in digital format, which means that they’re tucked away safely in a box somewhere. To that end we thought we’d offer two of our stories instead, as well as a story about a story. All of them have to do with butterflies. Marcia’s first: Continue Reading →

Remembering Father on Mother’s Day

Hi Folks:

Marcia first wrote this post in 2010, and much has changed since then. Marcia’s Mom and both of our Dads are now gone. At the same time, we welcomed our newest grandson – Beckett Vaughn Kempinski – into the world only nine days ago. His parents are celebrating their first child! And on we go…

Beckett Vaughn Kempinski

M&M Continue Reading →

Be Prepared

Hi Folks:

In January, 1908 Lord Robert Baden-Powell published the first installment of the handbook Scouting for Boys, successfully launching the Boy Scout movement in England. The Boy Scout movement began in the US in the following year and has since spread around the world. The Scout Motto (as any Scout can tell you) is Be Prepared. Lord Baden-Powell intended that every Scout should be prepared, both mentally and physically for any eventuality.

More than a century later, we have done much with these two words. We prepare ourselves for disaster, in our personal lives, in our cities and towns and in our countries. We stand ready to defend against invaders, ready to deal with the aftermath of natural disasters, and ready to do battle with those who might accost us in our personal and professional lives. Given the current torrent of natural disasters both in the US and abroad there seems little question that we were right to do so and the only question is what more we could or should have done.

That addresses one side of the idea; we’d like to explore the other for a moment. In our ant and grasshopper world we’ve invested countless hours, untold amounts of money and effort preparing for and dealing with the negative influences in our lives. While that is arguably a good idea, let me ask you this? Do you invest an equal amount of time and effort preparing for joy? Are you prepared for kindness? For love? For community? Or do you accept such things as haphazard, not to be relied upon, pleasant if present, but that expectation of same too often leads to disappointment? Are you prepared to be happy, or are you so worried that you won’t be or can’t be happy that you prepare yourself for the (eventual) alternative instead?

There are many answers to this, of course, and everyone of us must face it differently. Whether you believe your future is underlain by God, chance, fate, destiny or choice there remains at least one thing that you can choose. You can choose how to face the challenges in your life and how you engage those precious moments of connection. Choose love, often enough, and it becomes habit. As such, love begins to inform your perspective and as it does it affects not only what you see around you but how you see your world.

Just a little something to think about. It’s always a beautiful day. It’s only our perspective of it that changes, and perspective is everything. 🙂

Be Prepared for Joy

Be Prepared for Joy



Hi Folks:

We’re stealing this short video link from Kalebra Kelby’s blog; we do so unabashedly for two reasons. First, it’s a wonderful  film, and well worth 8 minutes of your time. Second, it gives us the opportunity to introduce you to Kalebra’s blog, which is filled with insight, humour and warmth (to name a few).




P.S. After viewing this you may wish to visit our ‘Finding Validation‘ post for more feelinggoodness. 🙂 (that may not be a word, but it should be)

P.S. II, the sequel. Mike’s sister Liz passed away 22 years ago today. She would have Loved this movie!

Happy Valentine’s Day!!

Happy Valentine's Day!!

Happy Valentine’s Day, folks! Remember to share the love. Hug someone you love today. Or a stranger. Or, preferably, both!


P.S. The roses were a gift from Marcia. Henry and Henrietta Hedgehog are among our (300+) kids.

It’s Our Birthday!!

Hi Folks!

It’s our birthday! Our blog is 7 years old today!! We’ve definitely moved beyond toddler stage; in the past seven years we’ve published 513 blog posts and 138 pages of stories and poems and the like, and there’s plenty more where those came from… 😉 In the past seven years we’ve written on a variety of topics, from photography and software tutorials to random thoughts, insightful news, and (of course) Free Hugs. Thanks so much to you for continuing to come and visit and share with us.

Continue Reading →

A Tribute to Mike’s Dad

Hi Folks:

Mike here. My dad, Jacques Séguin passed away last week so we wanted to take a moment or two to honour him. He turned 83 years young last spring, and he’s lived a good, long life. He showed up in mine when I was about four, and he’s been the only dad I ever had. Much of who I am today is because of his influence. My dad was not perfect (few of us are) but he had the biggest heart of anyone I’ve ever met. He was almost universally liked, and he would go a long way out of his way to help others, to engage someone, to generate a smile and/or a laugh. He taught me many, many things, some of them tangible, and others simply about how to be. He was invariably patient and kind. He will be missed. Continue Reading →

Echoes, Reflections and Speaking Into the Void

Hi Folks:

I don’t remember the last time we had a post that attempts to string together several semi-coherent thoughts, so it must be time for another one. This one is different from but connected to a few other posts we’ve done, including:

Continue Reading →

Remembering Father on Mother’s Day…

Hi Folks:

This post is from the archives (2010), but as Mike’s mom and both of our dads are still with us (Marcia’s dad is 92 and going strong!) we thought it was worth revisiting!!

Hello Dear Ones!

As long as I can remember, every Mother’s Day – without exception – my Dad would be heard to say, at some point to anyone and everyone within ear shot: “Don’t forget Father on Mother’s Day!” Though we lavished Mom with gifts and flowers, cards and, usually, a meal out, we always remembered Dad in some fashion.

Though my Mother has left this world physically, she is with us in our hearts and memories. It is to our memories of her and our hearts’ yearning for her that I dedicate this post in advance of the Mother’s Day weekend. MoM, wherever you are and whatever celestial mischief you are getting into today … Happy Mother’s Day!

(BTW Dear Reader: if you hear thunder and see lightening on Sunday, May 9th, 2010 … that’s my Mother telling us ‘kids’ that she’s thinking of us! How do I know? Well, that’s a story for another day …) Continue Reading →

He Says, She Says… F.E.A.R.

Hello, Dear Reader:

Someone (we’re not sure to whom to give credit) once described fear as an acronym:

F alse
E xpectations
A ctualizing
R eality

We’ve all felt fear from time to time, whether it was a simple case of being startled, an overwhelming sense of dread, or somewhere in between.  So, the question is, can fear be justified?  Not the quick surge of fear that takes us unawares, but the long-standing constant fear that can eat away at our psyche.  After all, fear is always about anticipation of an event, not the result of same.

There’s an old saying that goes something like this (copied from memory, so please forgive any inaccuracies):

Where there is fear
there is danger.
Consequently, where there is no fear
there is no danger.

If the man and the tiger
are not one,
then the tiger may attack
out of fear.

But if the man and the tiger are truly one
then the tiger will not attack.
For what animal
would knowingly attack itself?


Follow these links to read what He Says/She Says: Marcia’s View / Mike’s View