Flashback: Everyday inspiration

Dear readers: This flashback feature originally appeared on Grandma's Briefs August 4, 2011. Thank you for reading my (updated) rerun.

I'm not a world-traveler who finds inspiration in ancient ruins, artful masterpieces, or in architectural—or natural—wonders.

I'm also not one of the fortunate few privileged to find inspiration in luculent discourse with the likes of Maya Angelou or other great orators of our time. (Although I have heard in person the likes of Kurt Vonnegut. And David Sedaris. More than once.)

No, I don't get my inspiration from such high-brow—and high-cost—pleasures. Yet.

Instead, I find inspiration—the impetus to be bigger, better, and more than I am—in everyday things. Things such as these:

Words. Exacting words, strung together to make profound sentences. Better yet when several such sentences are strung together for impactful, unforgettable paragraphs. It happens. It inspires.

More words. In the form of the right sermon at the right time. The kind of sermon that makes me glad I put down the Sunday paper, got ready and got out the door. Sometimes sermons can make me wish I'd stayed home. Other times—the inspirational times—they fill my body and soul and make me ever-so thankful I have faith.

Even more words. These in the form of comments. From readers, from you. Things like, "So many of your posts make me laugh and tear up." And "I really do enjoy reading your posts to start my day!", "You are the kind of Grandma I wish I would have had when I was a child without any grandparents", "Love that you inspire us with words and pictures... make us think about what is really important...", and so many more. They inspire. You inspire. You make me want to give more, to be more.

Music. Live performances are life-affirming, but they're few and far between anymore. (Update: We have had the pleasure of attending two major concerts so far this summer!). So I'm inspired by the vast variety of recorded options, the endless selection in endless genres streaming on Spotify.  Plus, I'm endlessly inspired hearing Jim channel Randy Travis. Or Aaron Lewis. Or Johnny Cash, Brent Smith, George Michael and more. When he thinks I'm not listening.

The mountain outside my door. Pikes Peak is my compass, always to my west. Always an anchor. Always proof that I'm home.

My neighbors across the street. Who are attempting to grow a vineyard on their massive lot. Smackdab in the city. Suprisingly, it's working. Surprisingly, that inspires me, encourages me to ignore naysayers who doubt what I can—and will—achieve.

My oldest daughter. Who struggles with finding the right path, trying out this one and that one. She keeps moving, keeps trying, keeps pushing on. Keeps working to create a path uniquely her own. Keeps encouraging others to do the same. Keeps smiling. Keeps believing.

My middle daughter. Who struggles with the balancing act of kids versus career. Choosing one, then the other, then the other. She makes it work. And keeps choosing—what's right for her, what's right for them, what's right for her family, what's right for her well-being. Not all at the same time, but all at the right time. (Update: No current career struggles for Megan; stay-at-home mom has been her title since Declan's birth.)

And my youngest. Who occasionally just plain struggles. Yet when she does, when the struggle becomes too much, too rankling of her soul and her spirit, she leaps—sometimes against everyone's words of caution—and she always, always, ends up soaring. And she always ends up inspiring me to do the same.

Last but not least: my grandsons. A bundle o' boys who innocently, obliviously inspire me to be bigger, to be better, to be more than I am. Kiddos who have inspired me to be—and helped me become—far more than I was before.

Today's question:

Where do you find everyday inspiration?