On a roll again… ‘movin’ right along’

Autumn magically filters late afternoon sunlight

Movin’ right along in search of good times and good news, With good friends you can’t lose, This could become a habit! – (1979 Muppet Movie)

I love that Muppet Movie song. It’s jaunty rhythm inspires you to get up, get out and get going.

“Movin’ right along’ is exactly what you’d like to do, after a long, hot busy summer. By September, you want to get back on the road again. You want to get back on track after all those weeks of being sidetracked by summer fun.

Can there ever be too much summer fun? Maybe, since I believe we’re innately calendar synchronized; and when September comes along, there’s a quickening in our spirit. You recognize that familiar back-to-school feeling. So, for me, the Muppets tune is a perfect hum-along song…the one to get stuck in your head, as the October-November-December holiday season looms. There’s lots to be done, lots to catch up on. Lots of planning to be ready for those good times and good friends. So, who’s not ready? Me.

Summer 2016 was different and busy. For the first time in 20 years, our daughter and son-in-law were around the area from mid-June to mid-September. Many summers my husband’s parents were the snowbird visitors from Florida. This time, at summer’s end, our snowbird kids were leaving to go back to Mexico where they’ve spent the past two winters on their boat.

I smile to think of it, wondering when we will be the snowbirds. There could be a couple of short trips to Florida, but I’ve never imagined us as full-fledged snowbirds. For one thing, I’m never organized enough to be gone all winter long.

We won’t see our snowbird kids again until next summer. I can’t seem to wrap my mind around that, nor around me being gone that long from home base…always so much to do, never caught up.

By the end of August, I was beginning to get annoyed with myself and my penchant for procrastination. It would be wonderful to be as organized as my daughter has become, having been married to a Marine, whose career spanned several moves around the country.

In early September, while still feeling that little bit of personal annoyance, I happened to have an appointment for a haircut. My hairdresser asked me if I’d like a coffee or water. I took the little bottle of water, then laughed, noticing the words on the label: “You’re on a roll!”

As I often do, I imagined it a sign…a little nod to assure me that all’s well. You’re going to be fine; just get busy movin’ along. Take a little step. Just begin.

Autumn is a season of beginning again, and to gather in the harvest. I was thinking of that while enjoying a day at the Michigan Renaissance Festival in Holly, MI with our family and our daughter-in-law’s family. We’d finally made it to the festival, after promising them for several years. It’s an amazing day to spend with family and friends; I can’t believe we waited so long.

The Renaissance Festival makes a good kick-off for getting into the creative spirit that autumn inspires. It’s fun to immerse yourself for a day in the magic of times gone by, lingering in the imaginal realm.

Autumn brings a particular slant of the sun in autumn that captures that magic. I noticed it while spending time outdoors one late September afternoon. For some reason, you can sense its grounding effect. Everything seems to slow down in the natural world, even as our social lives tend to speed up.

Apparently, I’ve been needing to come back down to earth from the events of late summer. While coming home from visiting my husband’s father, in the hospital one weekend, I forgot my purse in a booth at an Arby’s restaurant. Usually, the first thing on my mind is having my belongings together.

I got all the way out to the parking lot, carrying my drink, oblivious to the potentially fatal error. Luckily, I hadn’t quite made it to the car, when a woman hollered at me wondering if I’d left my bag. I thanked her profusely and gave her a grateful hug. She said it was her husband who noticed I’d left it. So, I had two angels in the outfield that day.

They don’t know me, but I’m thanking them here as a way to thank all those better angels out there who’ve practiced such acts of kindness.

Getting out in nature, getting grounded, getting back in balance often takes deliberate effort. I recently saw the amazing short film about Detroit Tiger Baseball pitcher Daniel Norris, who leads an offbeat life during the “Off Season” – which is the name of the documentary by Ben Moon. The beautifully shot film records a road trip the two made from Tennessee to Oregon, revealing Norris’ off season adventures traveling in his VW van, “Shaggy.”

How’s that for “movin’ right along”? I can’t help it. The Muppet lyrics fit right in: Movin’ right along, footloose and fancy-free. Getting there is half the fun; come share it with me.

It’s an inspirational little film, in which Norris shares his perspective on life and how he’s always searching for balance.

Another line in the Muppets Movie song puts it in a nutshell: We don’t need a map to keep this show on the road. For equilibrium and guidance, we just need to follow our inner GPS.

I’ve always loved this affirmation, attributed to author Gail Brook Burket:

Give me such courage and I can scale the headiest peaks alone, and transform every stumbling block into a stepping stone.”

Stumbling blocks always appear on the road ahead. I’m always reminding myself that the challenge is to transform them and – with a little patience and perspective – put them in the rear view mirror. So I keep on keeping on, in search of good times, good news, and with a little bit of help from my friends, keep my personal Muppet movie going.

If I keep on humming and keep on movin’ along, who knows? It could become a beautiful habit.


Daniel Norris Off Season

Michigan Live about Daniel Norris

Detroit Free Press story of Daniel Norris film

Business Insider article about Daniel Norris


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Susan G Parcheta dreamed of being an inspirational writer, even as heading off after college to a teaching job. While teaching was not her passion, words were -- writing many years for Livingston newspapers, especially in the areas of education, health and wellness. The dream continues: to inspire creative, healthy living and to explore new concepts of body, mind, spirit. Her signature theme “All Things Beautiful” invites you to embrace the beauty and imagine the possibilities that life has to offer. She lives in Gregory with her husband, Jerry, and their fluffy, pointy-eared -- and always lovable -- cat, Spock.

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