Ten Pieces of Inspiration #70

Each week, I highlight ten things each week that inspired me to greater financial, personal, and professional success. Hopefully, they will inspire you as well.

I was so enamored with the beautiful weather this week – and the extensive time I spent outside – that I loaded my screensaver and rotating desktop wallpaper on my work computer with Creative Commons licensed photos of springtime. I ended up with several dozen. After watching them for most of a week, six of my favorites are sprinkled into this edition. Enjoy.

1. Blue Crocus
I was able to see a wonderful crocus bloom several weeks ago, as crocuses are usually among the first flowers to bloom in the spring.

blue crocus

This photo was taken by Per Ola Wiberg and it beautifully represents the colorful explosion that is springtime flowers.

2. Grass
Grass emerges unevenly in the spring, with some clumps here and there growing tall a bit earlier than other clumps. A few mowings later, you can’t tell the difference, but spring reveals some secrets about your lawn.


Thanks to B. Burky for the image.

3. Excerpt from April by Dinah Craik
Dinah Craik is a wonderful 19th century English poet. April is my favorite piece by her. Here’s a bit of it.

Awakener, come!
Fling wide the gate of an eternal year,
The April of that glad new heavens and earth
Which shall grow out of these, as spring-tide grows
Slow out of winter’s breast.
Let Thy wide hand
Gather us all — with none left out (O God!
Leave Thou out none!) from the east and from the west.
Loose Thou our burdens: heal our sicknesses;
Give us one heart, one tongue, one faith, one love.
In Thy great Oneness made complete and strong —
To do Thy work throughout the happy world —
Thy world, All-merciful, Thy perfect world.

4. Children playing soccer
I’m coaching a youth soccer team this spring. The children are so full of energy, almost bursting at the seams from the winter spent largely indoors.

Practice Grand Rapids Youth Soccer October 13, 20117

Thanks to Steven DePolo for the wonderful picture.

5. Freeman Dyson on starting over
There is never a mistake that you can’t overcome with hard work and a few other things.

So long as you have courage and a sense of humor, it is never too late to start life afresh. – Freeman Dyson

Every day is a chance to start over and undo the mistakes of the past.

6. April showers
There have been several bouts of early spring storms this past week and a half, including a vicious one that knocked out our power for a while. Few things can amaze like the power of nature.

And the rain starts

Thanks to Yogendra Joshi for this great picture of rain opening up from the skies.

7. Proust on new perspectives
Part of the reason why I enjoy reading so much is that, to me, it feels like the closest I’ll ever come to seeing the world through the eyes and thoughts of another person.

The voyage of discovery is not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes. – Marcel Proust

Rarely do I finish a worthwhile book and not feel differently about the world.

8. Fawns and other new animals
With so many recent walks in the woods, I’ve hoped to spy a whitetail fawn, but I’ve not seen one yet this year. It’s a little early, but sometimes you’ll see them as early as late April.

Fawn near the Office

Thanks to Sarah for the wonderful picture.

9. Helen Keller on pessimism
Seeing primarily the bad in things never really gets you anywhere.

No pessimist ever discovered the secret of the stars, or sailed to an uncharted land, or opened a new doorway for the human spirit. – Helen Keller

Look for the good in things instead. There’s much more to be found in the potential than in the limitations.

10. Dandelions emerging
Our yard is just now seeing the first dandelions of the year. Few things make me think of the springs of my youth than a young child bringing a handful of freshly picked dandelions into the house to give to their mother.


This photo was taken by Sean McMenemy.

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