Awesome Stories 199

This week Awesome Stories brings you super passive homes, courage, bio-gas, compassion, stone balancing and restoring land.

Courage Today

Glennon Doyle Melton wrote another post that rocked me with her idea of courage for today. Often we can be overwhelmed with life and its challenges. Instead of trying to figure it all out, maybe we can reach for courage in the moment for the one next step. It also helps to have friends, a support system, or a stranger delivering the perfect message to light your way! Read this heart warming story of how Glennon found courage for today and then shared the gift with another.

Super Passive Homepassive home, Awesome Stories

This home is amazing and beautiful. I would love to live in such a well built and energy efficient home. In the US, we have the LEED program to encourage energy efficient buildings, but in Germany they have a much tougher standard called Passive Homes. To be certified a Passive Home, it must meet rigorous standards for low energy demand, air tightness and thermal comfort. Sonya Newenhouse and her family built a house in northern Wisconsin that is so efficient, it only used the energy needed to run a hair dryer to heat it during one of the coldest winters in recent times. Learn more and see the photos of this amazing passive home.

Regreening Deserts

This program of repairing drought and damaged land has been incredibly successful. Rather than planting only trees, which is typically unreliable and expensive in dry land areas, the farmers have turned to agroecology, a way to combine crops and trees on the land. They’ve used terracing, moving large amounts of dirt and rock, while planting many seeds and trees. The results have been incredible, reclaiming about 1/6th of the arable land in Ethiopia, and inspiring similar projects in Uganda, the Congo, Columbia and Guatemala. It has been called a quiet revolution that just might help countries feed their people while mitigating the damages of climate change.

Practicing Compassion

For many years, I was very hard on myself, expecting near perfection on everything I did. This lead to excellence in some areas, but it also caused much stress. As I’ve learned to relax about life, results and perfectionism, I’ve found more peace. Part of my change has come from self compassion. If you also have a hard time being kind to yourself, here are some good tips for practicing self compassion. One of my practices has been to say empowering words to myself like “I love you”, “You can do this”, etc. Compassion and kindness make a great team!

Master of Stone Balancingstone balancing, Awesome Stories

Michael Grab is a master with stones, creating amazingly artful arrangements. If you haven’t seen his work before, you are in for a treat! What started as a playful messing around with rocks, has become a passionate exploration of rocks, balance, creation and meditation. In his words, “I am constantly in awe at the stillness, let alone possibility, of such precarious formations, amidst sometimes very turbulent conditions.”

Image from Gravity Glue website.

What needs stillness and balance in your life? Consider a retreat, even for a few moments or hours, to sooth your mind and soul. Blessings, Brad



21 thoughts on “Awesome Stories 199

  1. For this edition, the first story definitely hits home with me. I love the moniker ‘Courage Today’ – and that manner in which Glennon received it is like a secret message being dropped from the sky. I love the thought that we should use up every last drop of courage today because we will all receive a fresh refill tomorrow.

    It’s amazing when we are blessed with a gift that helps us to grow as a human being. It is even more special and profound when we have the opportunity to pass that gift on to another person in need. Wonderful stories, as always, Brad! Thank you for sharing and best wishes for an inspired and awesome day 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. A lovely collection today Brad of awesomeness.. And a enjoyed Courage Today… a great way of taking life each day..
    I wonder why we do not build more homes which are like the ones you have shared Brad.. I know when Hubby and discuss as we see housing estates being built.. why they do not build with Solar Panels, and eco friendlier energy… Instead most have no chimney’s and are all electric… No thought seems to go into them.. We still keep in the same grove as if we will have a never ending supply of energy.. Crazy really!..

    And as for the Stone Man.. Love his Balancing, a true art form in itself, never mind the stunning photo shots…

    Have a peaceful weekend Brad.. May all things be Balanced within your life.. and May your own courage spread out to all your tomorrows..

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Thanks for your continued support, blessings and kindness Sue. Thankfully, I see progress on building better homes in this area, not that there isn’t much more needed. 🙂
    I need to tap into some of Glennon’s courage as I wrestle with my financial and work challenges.
    I guess I’ll have to take my own advice about balance and courage. 🙂


  4. As always, I appreciate the world perspective I would otherwise miss. But I must confess getting lost in “Master” Michael’s stone formations. Something in their beauty and his profound quote about making them seemed to me the perfect life metaphor. Thank you. 🙂 xo


  5. Great stories Brad, thanks once again for sharing them. 🙂
    I would LOVE to live in one of those passive homes! I also enjoyed the stone balancing and the story about re-greening deserts. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Julie, Thanks for taking the time to explore all the stories. It’s fun to search the web for inspiring stories. 🙂
      I’d love to live in one of those passive homes too!
      I hope many farmers and ranchers adopt that method.
      Have a great Sunday. 🙂


  6. Thanks for another great round of inspiration, Brad. I enjoyed Glennon’s story and the passive house and the stacked stones. These inspirational posts always remind of how many great things are going on, which I appreciate.


    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much Zeenat. I’m delighted that you enjoy my stories and touched by your words. Truthfully, this has been a year filled with difficult challenges and emotional pain, yet I keep reaching for compassion and faith to help me through.
      blessings, Brad

      Liked by 1 person

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