A Tapestry of Beliefs

Leave a comment

advent calendarOur journey has begun into the Advent season. People have different expectations about the days leading up to Christmas depending on a person’s upbringing. As a society, we have become so touchy, afraid to stand up to our own values for fear of offending others politically and spiritually when it comes to the holidays.

I believe we all come to our understandings about faith or not in different ways. In the New Year, a movie called Tapestry staring Stephen Baldwin and Burt Young is due to be released. It is one man’s story of his spiritual journey.

Although I have yet to see the movie that is now being filmed in New York City, I wonder if this film is a reflection of Baldwin’s own tale of enlightenment or discovery. He has said this about his role in the film, “After 25 years in the film business, the projects I choose now must motivate me on a creative level that inspires and elevates my sense of art and spirit.”

tapestry the movie

If you are inclined to question and seek to form your own beliefs about a higher being or the creative or spiritual world, keep your eye on this film release in 2016.

This blog is brought to you by the author of the EVVY award-winning book Gift of a Lifetime: Finding Fulfilling Things in the Unexpected.

 

 

Advertisements

Reaching for Heaven

Leave a comment

“We shape our dwellings, and afterwards, our dwellings shape us.” – Winston Churchill

Building custom homes and places of faith have been projects that my family’s 100+ year old construction company has been involved with through the decades.

This fall in keeping with work of the men in the family who came before him, my youngest brother Scott soared up toward heaven to inspect the steeple at St. Johns Church in Reisterstown, Maryland in order to assess the necessary restoration project of Batton Builders. Interestingly, the church was built in 1816 and then destroyed by fire on Christmas Day and only the steeple and cornerstone of the church survived. The ediface was rebuilt in 1869.  The History of St. John’s Church, Western Run Parish from 1800-2000 by Margaret Worrall details the history of this church.

Since I wrote about the family building business in Gift of a Lifetime: Finding Fulfilling Things in the Unexpected, today on All Things Fulfilling I thought I’d share with our readers these photos of a church restoration Batton Builders has recently been involved with. What a magnificent structure!

st johns western run

 

St Johns

 Thankfully there is no fear of heights in the family.

scottSee you tomorrow on All Things Fulfilling.

This blog is brought to you by Sue Batton Leonard, award-winning author of Gift of a Lifetime: Finding Fulfilling Things in the Unexpected.

Next Generation Americans

Leave a comment

It takes an endless amount of history to make even a little tradition.Henry James

Over the course my lifetime, there have been many changes to my homeland. America has been built on the diversity of its people, yet sometimes I feel as if I no longer see the values this country was built upon. I expect the conundrum between progress and tradition but, I struggle with the fact that the good ole U.S.A. is vastly different than the country of my youth.

I can’t help but look at these pictures and worry whether wearing red, white and blue and stars and stripes will someday be banned in the U.S.A. forever. After all, it seems a crime to hang an American flag on one’s own property, on American soil. What’s up with that?

kids7

donkey and girl 4th

kids 6

Young boy (4-5) wearing red white and blue sailor hat, smiling, portrait

kids1

kids2

kid8

kids3

kids5

boy 2

What will our country look like for the next generation of American children? I’m airing just a bit of what I have been pondering this week. It’s an appropriate subject to consider on All Things Fulfilling during a month when we celebrate independence and American patriotism.

This blog is brought to you by Sue Batton Leonard, award-winning author of Gift of a Lifetime: Finding Fulfilling Things in the Unexpected and short stories Lessons of Heart & Soul.

 

Finding a Good Fit

1 Comment

Religion is like a pair of shoes…..Find one that fits for you, but don’t make me wear your shoes.”
George Carlin

hAPPYNESS IN SOLE

Today on this Thirsty Thursday, one day of the week All Things FuIfilling is dedicated to good news, I’d like to share an architectural wonder that perhaps has greater meaning than what was intended by the firm who created it.

I was drawn to an article about this holy place since the building of churches goes way back to the first generation in the history of my family’s five generation construction business.

There is a house of worship designed and built by the architectural group, Gijs Van Vaerenbergh, in Borgloon, Belgium that takes seeing religion from different perspectives to a whole new level.

The good news is that there are many kinds of religions throughout the world. If you live in a truly free society, individuals get to select the religion that best aligns with their own principles and values, or we can opt out of being a believer of any sort.

Images in the article I’ve linked to this website tell the rest of this story. Put your Sunday shoes on, any kind will do, and take a few minutes to enter into this unique church. View the images and you will see what I mean. To learn more about the construction of the structure, visit this website.

That’s all for today! See you tomorrow on All Things Fulfilling. We will be sharing an upcoming educational event that is good news for independent publishers or for people who are thinking of writing their own stories of any type (faith stories, memoirs, fiction, non-fiction or creative writing through the form of poetry, song lyrics or screenwriting).

 

Aired at the Farm, Refreshingly

Leave a comment

 “Feed your faith and starve your doubts.”Kenneth E. Hagin Sr.

A few weeks ago my sister-in-law, Grace, and I visited the Prigel Family Creamery http://www.prigelfamilycreamery.com/ in Glen Arm, Maryland to pick up some of their award-winning “Best of Baltimore” ice cream. The farm is located in horse country, near My Lady’s Manor, Maryland in Baltimore County, north of the city. It’s in the area of the state where the notable “steeple chases” take place every April. For those of you who are unfamiliar with that term, think fox and hound hunts. http://www.marylandsteeplechasing.com/main/mlm/datetime.htm

As we drove up to the farm, I was surprised by what I saw. A business that unabashedly shares their belief on a sign etched in stone right on the foundation of the building. You can’t miss it.

IMG_20141104_135429_512

“How refreshing is that?” I thought. So many businesses and individuals in this day and age would rather not display signs of the American values and principles that our country was founded upon – a sad state of affairs, I think, if I can be honest.

As everyone knows farming is one of the most difficult occupations there is. Hard work, unforeseeable challenges and the unrelenting task of finding ways to be a sustainable business is all part of the job. It also takes faith to be a farmer because they are constantly at the mercy of unpredictable weather!

Today during this week of gratefulness, I’d like to dedicate this blog on All Things Fulfilling to farmers and ranchers everywhere who keep us fed with fresh produce and other “fruits” of their labor and production – meat, eggs, grains, cheese, poultry, maple syrup and so much more. When we sit down to the Thanksgiving table on Thursday, let us remember where the food we eat comes from and those who produce it.

Here are a few more photos from my quick stop at Prigel’s, along the trail of my East Coast book tour, which I am so very grateful for.

IMG_20141104_135512_193

IMG_20141104_135638_890

IMG_20141104_135524_024

This blog is brought to you by Sue Batton Leonard. For information on her memoir, Gift of a Lifetime: Finding Fulfilling Things in the Unexpected, which has won three awards, please visit this site.http://amzn.to/1vDFUMt.

 


I

Portraits of America

Leave a comment

“Agriculture, manufactures, commerce and navigation, the four pillars of our prosperity, are the most thriving when left most free to individual enterprise.”  –Thomas Jefferson: 1st Annual Message, 1801.

IMG_20141005_132520_553

In the National Portrait Gallery images of prominent people of widespread importance are featured throughout the museum.The portraits are stunning but,I was particularly drawn to an exhibit called Experience America. The paintings typify the U.S.A.  in earlier times and feature common folk both hard at work and play, building our country into what it is today.

Also portrayed in these images are good old-fashioned American values of family, faith and community. The paintings are representative of our nation’s population of people throughout history who have toiled to make us a country of free enterprise and industry.

 

IMG_20141005_133419_684

IMG_20141005_133513_655

IMG_20141005_133653_425

IMG_20141005_133338_534

IMG_20141005_133815_852

IMG_20141005_133701_311

IMG_20141005_133646_476

IMG_20141005_133547_820

 

IMG_20141005_133520_212

In the Experience America collection, a few of Edward Hopper’s paintings are included. He was both an oil painter and watercolorist (circa 1882 – 1967) whose urban and rural scenes are ”spare and finely calculated renderings reflected his personal vision of modern American life.”

 IMG_20141005_133826_381Above: Edward Hopper painting

Below Edward Hopper’s “Cape Cod Morning”

IMG_20141005_133855_315

IMG_20141005_135508_101This plaque hangs in the National Portrait Gallery. To me it is a shining reminder to protect what we so dearly cherish about our country – freedom and independence!

That’s all today from All Things Fulfilling.  See you tomorrow!

This blog brought to you by award-winning author Sue Batton Leonard. For more information on the independently published book Gift of a Lifetime:Finding Fulfilling Things in the Unexpected, please visit this link.

http://amzn.to/1vDFUMt

An Author to Watch

Leave a comment

You write in order to change the world … if you alter, even by a millimeter, the way people look at reality, then you can change it.” ~ James Baldwin 

I’ve been so busy I haven’t picked up a book other than my own to proofread it for the zillionth time in several weeks. Not having time to read drives me crazy – walking and reading are my most treasured personal freedoms. It’s how I relax and escape.

library hospital for themind. jpgOn Friday I decided I REALLY needed an outlet aside from what I am doing. I caved and went to the library. I found a real honey of a story by debut novelist Natalie Baszile called “Queen Sugar.”http://bit.ly/1nAv4B9. Oh my, how I have enjoyed it. It has not disappointed. Author Tayari Jones describes the book as “a page turning, heart breaking novel of the new South, where the past is never truly past, but the future is a hot, bright promise.” Put this book, published by Penguin, on your To Read List. In my opinion, the author has interwoven important societal messages and cultural values into a well-crafted story.  Natalie Baszile, I’m keeping my eye on you. You are a great writer!

Now it’s back to work. There is so much a head of me to look forward to.

This blog brought to you by www.CornerstoneFulfillmentService.com. See you tomorrow on All Things Fulfilling.