A Story: Change Your Thinking

A beautiful story my friend emailed me today.  Worth sharing and contemplating…..

Two men, both seriously ill, occupied the same hospital room..
One man was allowed to sit up in his bed for an hour each afternoon to
help drain the fluid from his lungs.
His bed was next to the room’s only window.
The other man had to spend all his time flat on his back.
The men talked for hours on end.

They spoke of their wives and families, their homes, their jobs, their
involvement in the military service, where they had been on vacation..
Every afternoon, when the man in the bed by the window could sit up, he
would pass the time by describing to his roommate all the things he
could see outside the window.

The man in the other bed began to live for those one hour periods where
his world would be broadened and enlivened by all the activity and
color of the world outside.

The window overlooked a park with a lovely lake.
Ducks and swans played on the water while children sailed their model
boats. Young lovers walked arm in arm amidst flowers of every color and
a fine view of the city skyline could be seen in the distance…

As the man by the window described all this in exquisite details, the
man on the other side of the room would close his eyes and imagine this
picturesque scene.

One warm afternoon, the man by the window described a parade passing by.
Although the other man could not hear the band – he could see it in his
mind’s eye as the gentleman by the window portrayed it with descriptive

Days, weeks and months passed.

One morning, the day nurse arrived to bring water for their baths only
to find the lifeless body of the man by the window, who had died
peacefully in his sleep.

She was saddened and called the hospital attendants to take the body
away.  As soon as it seemed appropriate, the other man asked if he could be
moved next to the window. The nurse was happy to make the switch, and
after making sure he was comfortable, she left him alone.

Slowly, painfully, he propped himself up on one elbow to take his first
look at the real world outside.
He strained to slowly turn to look out the window besides the bed.

It faced a blank wall.

The man asked the nurse what could have compelled his deceased roommate
who had described such wonderful things outside this window.  The nurse responded that the man was blind and could not even see the wall.

She said, ‘Perhaps he just wanted to encourage you.’


There is tremendous happiness in making others happy, despite our own
situations.  Shared grief is half the sorrow, but happiness when shared, is

If you want to feel rich, just count all the things you have that money
can’t buy.

‘Today is a gift, that is why it is called The Present.’


Hidden Blessings

This week has definitely been an interesting one.  Indra’s Grace has now been closed since Tuesday.  We have almost been closed a full work week.  I am writing candidly today and sharing my thoughts.   It is the first time I realize a different side of owning your own business.  In owning your own business, when you don’t work there is no income.  I understood this over Christmas break but as taking the break knowingly I prepared for it financially.  This week is different. It could be a source of stress but bringing acceptance to the way things are allows a whole new world to open up.  Hidden blessings show up everywhere when we bring ACCEPTANCE to the present moment, even if it’s not what our minds would choose first.

I want to share that in EVERYTHING there is always hidden blessings.  We cannot control nature.  That is the beauty of nature, that is the mystery of nature, it is literally unpredictable.  What we can do is immediately ACCEPT what nature brings us.  The quicker we can accept what is the quicker we have peace of mind.  We can learn to accept the present moment.  We can learn to accept the “is-ness” of the now.  One of life’s greatest spiritual lessons is to bring ACCEPTANCE to the present moment. When you bring acceptance to the present moment you bring a higher consciousness to what is and you can work with the present moment from a higher vantage point than if you work with the present moment with resistance. Resistance zaps energy and takes away our energy to work WITH the present moment fully.

It is rather humorous when you think about the fact that we want to change what is sometimes!  You are spoiling your mood and an opportunity to enjoy hidden blessings when you resist the present moment.  If you can just shift your perception to accepting instead of resisting you will open up to a whole new state of consciousness that will allow you to work with the present moment.

“You cannot solve a problem from the same consciousness that created it. You must learn to see the world anew.” – Albert Einstein

This week I’ve had no classes but it has opened up a full week of practicing yoga at home, catching up on work, finishing a video for the studio, resting, quiet time, writing, updating the website, and finishing other projects that I hear a quiet voice inside me urging me to do.  How many projects do we have that go on undone because we think we don’t have time?  In this week, it’s been such a blessing to have so much “forced” down time.  Instead of resisting the weather, try enjoying it, maybe even giving yourself permission to slow down and relax, read a book, spend time being quiet.  Our normal routine will be back before you know it but in the unpredictability we also feel more alive because we step out of comfort zone and routine.

I wish you a week full of hidden blessings.  I wish you a chance to see things from a different perspective.  Try bringing ACCEPTANCE this week to all you do.  It makes doing things that aren’t necessarily your favorite easier because you are going with the flow instead of paddling against it.

Sending all my love and hoping you are staying warm,

Sandra Vanatko



There Is A Good Reason Your Mama Said Eat Your Brussels Sprouts!

You say the word Brussels sprouts and most people make a face!  Make faces no more after you try this easy recipe and hear about the amazing benefits packed in these little cruciferous veggies!!  Brussels sprouts are not sprouts at all!  They are actually part of the cabbage family and there is no wonder why when you take a good look at them.  They look like mini cabbages!  Be wary though, if you get too close you may want to try one!!  Did you know that Brussels sprouts are packed with cancer fighting chemicals that help suppress the development of precancerous cells?  How cool is that! The chemical sinigrin is responsible and is so powerful that it works in a way to persuade precancerous cells to commit suicide.    They are also high in isothiocyanates and sulforaphane which are two compounds that help fight cancer by inhibiting cell proliferation, neutralizing carcinogens, and helping to detoxify toxins.  Say yes to Brussels Sprouts.  Where do these wondrous veggies come from by the way?  BELGIUM, of course!

So for a quick and delicious meal get yourself a bag of Brussels sprouts, organic if possible and locally grown.  You will want to cut the ends off each Brussel sprout and then cut each one in half.  If you like, also grab several red potatoes, wash and slice in half.  Throw your potatoes and Brussels sprouts into a bowl and add 2 tablespoons of olive oil, a bit of salt to taste, and lots of fresh ground black pepper, mix together.  Preheat your oven to 400 degrees and pour your mixture onto a cookie sheet.  Cook at 400 degrees approximately 30-40 minutes, depending on how crunchy you like your cruciferous veggies!!  Thirty minutes later you are ready to eat!  TADA!!  I hope you enjoy!!