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Happy Thanksgiving: Celebrating Hope, Wonder, and Gratitude

In the United States, it’s Thanksgiving. A time to gather around the table with loved ones and celebrate our many blessings. We celebrate creative living in every aspect of the meal: from setting a beautiful table to creating each delectable dish served upon it. We try new dishes to stretch our tastes and try to create the tastes of our childhoods with heirloom recipes handed down from grandmother to daughter (or from grandfather to son).

It’s also a time to honor the harvest, gathering the fruits of seeds planted in fertile ground. And fertile minds. Because what is creativity but harvesting the fruits of the seeds we’ve planted?

We’re also on the edges of the season of wonder, when children hope for snow flurries and the sound of Santa’s sleigh bells on dark nights. We decorate our homes with twinkle lights and glowing candles, illuminating the darkened corners and reminding us that where there is shadow, the hope of enlightenment is also nigh.

In celebration of this holiday, we won’t be offering you a new poem, story, or essay, but a collection of two dozen gems of wisdom on hope and wonder – gratitude and creativity.

“There is no better opportunity to receive more than to be thankful for what you already have. Thanksgiving opens up the windows of opportunity for ideas to flow your way.”
–Jim Rohn

“Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul
And sings the tune without the words
And never stops at all.”
― Emily Dickinson

“The essence of all beautiful art, all great art, is gratitude.”
–Friedrich Nietzsche

“The act of giving something to others is an art of flowering your heart.”
–Vinayak

“The possession of knowledge does not kill the sense of wonder and mystery. There is always more mystery.”
― Anaïs Nin

“In a time of destruction, create something.”
― Maxine Hong Kingston

“Gratitude opens the door to… the power, the wisdom, the creativity of the universe.”
–Deepak Chopra

“Wonder is the beginning of wisdom.”
― Socrates

“At times our own light goes out and is rekindled by a spark from another person. Each of us has cause to think with deep gratitude of those who have lighted the flame within us.”
–Albert Schweitzer

“Dwell on the beauty of life. Watch the stars, and see yourself running with them.”
― Marcus Aurelius

“Music and art both spring from a grateful heart.”
–Katie Wood McCloy

“Hope is a waking dream.”
― Aristotle

“The more clearly we can focus our attention on the wonders and realities of the universe about us, the less taste we shall have for destruction.”
― Rachel Carson

“Philosophers wonder when they do not know, artists when they do.”
― Raheel Farooq

“A man should hear a little music, read a little poetry, and see a fine picture every day of his life, in order that worldly cares may not obliterate the sense of the beautiful which God has implanted in the human soul.”
― Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

“There is no one harder to live with than an artist. Therefore an artist is a real gift because he or she raises the sanctity of everyone else in the community.”
— David Steindl-Rast

“Moonlight drowns out all but the brightest stars.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien

“Hope can be a powerful force. Maybe there’s no actual magic in it, but when you know what you hope for most and hold it like a light within you, you can make things happen, almost like magic.”
― Laini Taylor,

“I want to thank anyone who spends part of their day creating. I don’t care if it’s a book, a film, a painting, a dance, a piece of theater, a piece of music. Anybody who spends part of their day sharing their experience with us. This world would be unlivable without art. Thank you for inspiring me.”
–Steven Soderberg

“An artist gives. Gives visually, gives through courses, or with free advice, through generosity of spirit and through a need to share.”
–Veronica Roth

“Art is the giving by each man of his evidence to the world. Those who wish to give, love to give, discover the pleasure of giving. Those who give are tremendously strong.”
–Robert Henri

“There is nothing new under the sun, but there are new suns.”
― Octavia E. Butler

“The very least you can do in your life is figure out what you hope for. And the most you can do is live inside that hope. Not admire it from a distance but live right in it, under its roof.”
― Barbara Kingsolver

“Gratefulness translates into a joy-filled understanding that informs art making – a simplicity that goes beyond preconceived ideas and moves us toward truth.”
–Dean Taylor Drewyer

We hope you enter the waning days of 2017 with a sense of hope, are open to the wonder and beauty of the world around you, and honor your own personal harvest and creative spark. We are so honored to witness the ways in which you you celebrate your creative life with a full and grateful heart.

With love from our creative table to yours.
The Staff of Modern Creative Life

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Labor Day: Honoring Hard Work

In the United States, it’s Labor Day. It’s the day we honor the labor movement and the contributions that workers have made to the strength, prosperity, laws and well-being of our country. In some ways, it’s a social holiday – the bookend to Memorial Day, marking the unofficial end of summertime and when we head back to school… and work.

All holidays allow us to revel in creative living. On this particular one, we honor the sacrifice of other workers, toiling for their art and their livelihood. We gather with loved ones for shared meals and mutual celebration. We bask in the last carefree rays of summer sunlight.

We also take the time to consider the ways in which we mimic those who have come before us, in honor of our art and for the pure freedom of living a creative life.

Here at Modern Creative Life, we won’t be offering you a new poem, story, or essay to celebrate Labor Day, but a collection of a quotes that reflect upon the value of hard work and the need be true to our creative souls as we look at both the light and dark sides of laboring and creating.

“It would be a great disappointment for you to give up on yourself before the appointed time to reap the fruit of your labor.”
― Edmond Mbiaka

“Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant.”
–Robert Louis Stevenson

“Keep expecting and believing that your due season is coming. Declare that the good you have harvested in your life will manifest.”
― Germany Kent

“Make a pact with yourself today to not be defined by your past. Sometimes the greatest thing to come out of all your hard work isn’t what you get for it, but what you become for it.”
― Steve Maraboli

“The three great essentials to achieve anything worthwhile are, first, hard work; second, stick-to-itiveness; third, common sense.”
― Thomas A. Edison

“…talent means nothing, while experience, acquired in humility and with hard work, means everything.”
― Patrick Süskind

“It doesn’t matter how great your shoes are if you don’t accomplish anything in them.”
― Martina Boone

“The dictionary is the only place that success comes before work. work is the key to success, and hard work can help you accomplish anything.”
― Vince Lombardi Jr.

“What we plant in the soil of contemplation, we shall reap in the harvest of action.”
–Meister Eckhart

“There are no shortcuts to any place worth going.”
― Beverly Sills

 

Annual Anthology: 2016

Favorites from: What’s Next? – Nourishment – Wisdom

When we envisioned a new Literary/Arts Magazine, we wanted to not only be a part of the digital world, but also breathe life into the works of talented people by taking their work to the flesh: real paper.

This book is the first venture into going from the circuits of computers across the world into something you can hold in your hands.

We are thrilled to share with you the First Annual Anthology from Modern Creative Life. The Editorial Team has chosen a handful of favorites from the first three issues of the digital magazine and gathered them in a beautiful paperback book for your reading pleasure.

Within the  376 pages of this delightful book you’ll discover poetry, essays, stories, letters, and other works from thirty-two different makers.

The cover features a photo from Lawrence Davanzo.

The Modern Creative Life Annual Anthology: 2016 is available from Amazon in Paperback and a Kindle version.

As a bonus, we’ve joined the Kindle Match program, so for those of you who can’t decide which version you want for your personal library, purchasing the paperback will make you eligible for the Kindle version at no additional cost.

This is a stunning collection: perfect for lingering over with your morning coffee and reading by the fire in the evening.

We hope you will reach for this book whenever you yearn for a moment of connection with other creative souls. May it encourage you and inspire your own creative living.

With love,

Debra Smouse
Editor in Chief

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