the Open Secret

I came across this from Elizabeth Lesser’s blog. She inspires me with her realness and authenticity. I wanted to share this with you, in hopes you let go of “being perfect” and having to make everything perfect for your Christmas season. I share Elizabeth’s words with you and just maybe it will help you let go of some of the season’s stress and give you a moment of peace. Whatever your Christmas will be, I hope it is with your whole heart.        Love Sue

“Most of the people I know (myself included) will barely pull off a Christmas tree and a chaotic family gathering. Life is busy and the times are stressful, so if you want to experience the real meaning and magic of the holidays, let’s start by unburdening ourselves of impossible expectations. The most effective thing you can do to have your own happy holiday is to wipe the word “normal” from your vocabulary.

In my work and travels I have met thousands of people from all walks of life. I have yet to meet a normal one, if normal means consistently sane, contented, and capable. And yet most of us hold ourselves up to an unattainable standard of human perfection. The 12th century poet Rumi called this phenomenon, the “Open Secret.” He said each one of us is trying to hide the same secret from each other—not some racy or evil secret, but rather the mere fact of our flawed humanness. We expend so much energy trying to conceal our ordinary bewilderment at being human, or our loneliness in the crowd, or that nagging sense that everyone else has it more together than we do, that we miss out on the chance to really connect, which is what we ultimately long for—especially during the holidays.”     Elizabeth LesserIMG_7787


Your Sky

“That is what happens when you put your soul in charge of your life. You dare to claim the sky. That sky is different for everyone. For one person, maybe the sky is having a baby, being a parent, growing a family. But for another it’s never having kids; it’s traveling the globe; it’s saving the world… You know your sky. And if you don’t, it’s because you haven’t listened closely enough.”
-Elizabeth Lesser, Marrow: A Love Story


Thank you to our Heroes!

20171017_172603.jpgYesterday, as many of you know, Calgary and area was hit with extremely high winds. So high, that it caused power outages, wildfires in several areas east of the city, and caused glass to fall from one of the tall buildings downtown. So now that I have set the stage for the weather conditions yesterday, you will understand how this group of young people, who volunteered for us, in the high winds, were literally heroes.

Seven players from the HEROS program (Hockey Education Reaching Out Society) came  yesterday to help with our fall clean up. I understand they gave up one of their hockey afternoons to help us rake and bag leaves. It is so awesome seeing this young group,  giving back to the community – and they did this, under such extreme, windy and cold conditions.  (HEROS is a non-profit organization that utilizes the game of hockey to build skills in the sport itself and build a sense of community in economically challenged areas of cities throughout Canada. “Giving back” is an important part of their growth as they learn about other non-profit organizations through volunteerism. )

Thank you so much to our HEROES! Keep up your enthusiasm and volunteer spirit! (and enjoy your hockey game next week!)


As we approach our Canadian Thanksgiving, I am reminded of all the wonderful, amazing volunteers that have helped me over the growing season. I want to start with my husband, Don, who came all spring, summer and fall and helped with the soil preparations, helped me buy and transport all of the plants, planting, weeding, watering, and absolutely everything else that was needed all season long!  Thank you so much Don!

Thank you also to our enthusiastic and hard working volunteers from Encana – Vicy, Scott, Tyson, Craig, Jason, Patsy, Nyree, Liz, Adam, Mike, and Jasone. You helped us get so much work done! Thank you for giving up your Saturday morning to help us in the garden – Chimezie, Megan, Jaya and Chineme. It was always so fun having you join us! Thank you also to the amazing group from Stantec – Graham, Joshua, Janine, Rania, Vladi, and Alfred! I worked you so hard and I never heard one complaint. Joshua even looked after all of the twigs and branches and hauled them away in this truck! You are all amazing!

And a big, big thank you to my family who came to help us in the gardens – my Mom Chizuko, my sister Linda – thank you for all your hard work in deadheading and pruning the cotoneasters and barberry bushes. Linda worked hard pruning even while she was on vacation here! I cannot forget to thank my dear grandson Hendrix for helping us water the gardens, releasing 1000 live ladybugs into the garden, and harvesting our potatoes. You are already an amazing gardener! And to our sweet grand daughter, Poppy – thank you for gracing our gardens with your joy, for smelling all of our flowers (one of my favourite things to do too!) and for helping us with the potato harvest! I love you all!

Thank you also to Jaclyn, Laura, Bobbi, and Nancy for your help and assistance all summer and to all the front desk volunteers who kindly watered the pots all summer. You are all in my thoughts and prayers this Thanksgiving weekend – have a beautiful time with family and friends.

I am grateful to you all.
Much love



Thank you to the six wonderful and incredible Stantec volunteers who came to help us in the gardens on Monday. All six of you worked so hard – digging, sweating, weeding, pruning, and helping us ALL afternoon. It was back breaking work but you helped us complete all of the tasks in our preparations for winter.

Special thank you to Joshua for volunteering to take all of our branches and twigs and there were alot of them! Your truck was full of our branches and you helped so much by taking them to the recycle depot for us!

Thank you so much again to our great Stantec volunteers – Graham, Joshua, Janine, Rania, Vladi, and Alfred! All the best to all of you – it was great meeting you and we are grateful for the time and hard work you gave to all of us at Wellspring Calgary.

With gratitude
Sue Murphy