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Character counts. Comparison kills. Love cures.

Character counts. Comparison kills. Love cures.

Good Morning from Prince Edward Island,

Thank you for inviting me in, put the kettle on, time for tea.

This week, I started to think about the forms we need to complete seeking Federal government permits to import butterfly pupae from around the world.  It also had me wondering about the Monarch Butterfly as they prepare to make their journey north from Mexico this time of year.

There has been a record number seen in Texas so far, so it is looking good as far numbers go.

It amazes me that these beautifully designed creatures weigh less than a postage stamp, yet can fly on average 50 to 100 miles / 80 to 160 km a day.  

Monarch butterflies only migrate during the day. They come down at night and gather in clusters. A cluster of butterflies is called a roost or a bivouac.

Adult Monarchs live only three to four weeks; it takes several generations of butterflies to migrate north from Mexico.

The sheer miracle displayed is only surpassed when the last generation, called the Methuselah, each fall head out from their summer breeding grounds in the northeastern U.S. and Canada and travel upwards of 3,000 miles to reach overwintering grounds in southwestern Mexico.

After waiting out the winter in Mexico, these winged charmers head part of the way back north to warmer climates such as Texas, where they mate and lay eggs on milkweed plants. This regeneration repeats as they keep moving north before the last generation (Methuselah) is produced in Canada or the northeast US.

For those who are reading this blog and are unaware, as part of a non-profit that Shirley and I set up we operate a Butterfly House to support the Gardens of Hope. More about our non-profit here.

The Amazing Life Cycle of a Monarch Butterfly might convince those who think that we are part of some cosmic accident to reconsider. Amazing video.

I mentioned in last weeks blog that I was speaking to a class of high school students who are seeking career direction.

It was a rewarding experience on many levels but mainly because it started a thinking process and desire to know about how one can plant seeds of encouragement and appreciation into fertile minds with a hope to make a positive impact.

While trying to keep things positive with my blog, I’ll stay away from the sad statistics that point to high levels of anxiety in our younger generations, and the negative consequences flowing from it. Instead, I will try and speak to solutions, not the problems.

Perfectionism is an issue in society, and this quick video lays a foundation for some of the problems.

I started wondering what if classes were designed to foster creativity and community instead of where the one with the highest mark wins.

Being measured by numbers alone should be reconsidered. With the meritocracy system being challenged this week in the US as college seats being more or less purchased by those who have the capability to pay, undermines the heart's desire of those who honestly work hard to get ahead, nothing to say the trust lost in ALL institutions.

Numbers should not be the sole factor used in deciding one's value.

“Try not to become a man of success, but rather try to become a person of value.” – Albert Einstein

I know nothing about the professional education system other than what I experienced long ago. Speaking about it here perhaps will reinforce my ignorance on the subject. Please forgive me.

So this is just an opinion, mine, not necessarily formed from the best of place — apologies up front.

Educators have such a tough job, with split families, no dads or no moms at home, the blended family scenario, etc., young children dealing with so much, it has to be hard to deliver education to young ones dealing with mild or severe trauma.  My heart goes out to them all.

Character counts. Comparison kills. Love cures.

“It doesn’t really matter whether you’re first rate, second rate, or third rate, but it’s of vital importance…that you do the very best you can with the powers that are given you. It’s idle to strive for things out of your reach, just as it’s utterly immoral to be slothful about the qualities you have.” – Lawrence Durrell, The Paris Review interview

Cheers to our personal growth, but extreme individualism must be balanced with some extreme version of self-sacrifice as well, or our society will continue to get out of whack.

How about a personal character measurement based on “doing good” for others.

Students will have a happier and more successful journey if taught skills in wise decision making, self-awareness, personal responsibility for health and wellness, life long learning, money management and community service.

The future will be that place where jobs for life can no longer be expected and AI (artificial intelligence) is coming at us real fast, and there is no stopping that train.

More important than skills, is the power of a positive attitude earned from the grounding in how the essence of self-esteem works will work to increase curiosity, the joy of life, teamwork all the while building healthy, considerate communities.  

"Be an Encourager: When you encourage others, you boost their self-esteem, enhance their self-confidence, make them work harder, lift their spirits and make them successful in their endeavours. Encouragement goes straight to the heart and is always available. Be an Encourager. Always." Roy T. Bennett

Any thoughts? If you choose to comment, please share your solutions.

I was thinking of things I could do today, that doesn’t involve scrolling my phone. Please add to the list of things that we all might consider via the comment section.

Instead of scrolling on my phone this weekend, I think I will…

  1. Plan a coffee/tea date with a friend
  2. Take a long walk
  3. Write a thank you note.
  4. Read a magazine
  5. Read a book
  6. Visit a friend in a senior home.
  7. Call an old acquaintance and play catch up.
  8. Call a niece or nephew to encourage.
  9. Tidy. Organize for next week.
  10. Just hang with my best friend, Shirley.

Have a beautiful day, a lovely weekend and all the best till the next time you invite me in for tea.

With love from Prince Edward Island,



Happy St. Patricks Day

Q: Why can't you borrow money from a leprechaun?

A: Because they're always a little short.

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Ann Kingery - March 27, 2019

Bruce… having been to your Preserve shoppe on PEI a few years ago, I’m so glad I signed up for your weekly news and blogs.. you are such an inspiration… much like Dr Terarai Trent. I’ve sent on a couple of your blogs to family/friends… I trust they read and enjoy your communications as much as I do. /a

Susan T Mayo - March 16, 2019

P.S. The Painted Lady butterflies are making their presence known here in southern California! Beautiful!

Susan T Mayo - March 16, 2019

I shared your encouragement piece on to my daughter who loves children, and loves her school counselor job. I also love the Encouragement theme. My goal is to encourage others! When my beloved passed away, the pastor of our Sunday school class, many years before, had mentioned his joy when Ron helped out with anything that needed to be done. He referred to Ron as Barnabus, son of exhortation! Character does count! Thank you Bruce. Blessings ~~~Susan Angel

David Wilson - March 16, 2019

Great article. Thanks for sharing this great advice.

Margaret MacFarlane - March 16, 2019

Bruce,I find your weekly blog so thoughtful,insightful and motivational.
It is one of the few things published that I read every week .
It always inspires me to start another week in a better way.
Thank you for taking your time to compose and share with us and please continue.
Happy week ahead as the sun shines warmer,for longer each day and new growth is starting.

MURDOCK MORRISON - March 16, 2019

Hi Bruce and what a beautiful picture of the Monarch butterfly -and the story and video that you gave us to learn more about their life history. Then you get into education my place of learning as I was a school principal and enjoyed very much your perspective on what students today should be striving to accomplish and not just the highest marks but a wholeness in their life. I have copied this blog because it should be shared with others in education that I often chat and media share with each month. Love your idea of being an “encourager” as we need to think of this in all of the things we do each day. Murdock

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