Category Archives: art

Ashton’s Weekend Reads & Listens

I started reading Braiding Sweetgrass this week. Seems like this one will be something special.

Brain Picking’s post, Gardening as Resistance: Notes on Building Paradise, was loaded with wisdom. The older I get, the more I find myself leaving the need to be on the constant quest for knowledge to simply becoming a student of the language and wisdom of dirt, seeds, and trees.

Lastly, I’ve poured myself many a cup of Hiss Golden Messenger this spring. Sanctuary and If It Comes in the Morning are so masterfully done. With each spin they get better. Do yourself a favor and Google the lyrics.

Be open.

Stay curious.


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Ashton’s Weekend Read(s)

The art of letter writing is something I’ve noticed leaders do very well. I’ve read two letters to shareholders in the last couple of weeks….one short, one very long. Jeff Bezos ends his final letter as CEO at Amazon in the way only he can. And Jamie Dimon has the sharpest vision I’ve seen.

Godin on Investment and Expenses.

Love and Friendship from the Center for Action and Contemplation.

Red Bird Explains Himself by Mary Oliver.

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Your Beauty Radar

Your beauty radar is always scanning to receive the wonderful memos of the universe.

However, the intel from this radar can be difficult to receive if other radars hold more importance in your life. Radars like the good/bad radar, the right/wrong radar, the in/out radar, the win/lose radar, the friend/foe (enemy) radar, and so forth.

Is it possible that you could allow your beauty radar to scan today and take the risk of pulling the plug on these others?

Today, notice how strange and lovely the lettuce hangs off of your plate…behold how the last drop of wine cries down your glass…sway with the swaying cottonwood…gaze into the windy sequins of the aspens…ride the wave of your child’s trademarked laugh…listen to the orchid’s whisper…thank the cardinal’s song…taste the coffee more than you feel the caffeine…and, if you can, see how something imperfect actually looks, feels, or becomes something you would label as perfect.

It appears that part of our work of being human in this day and age is going to be in cultivating the presence, awareness, and posture to receive such mysterious memos from this enchanted world that we’ve been entrusted.

We will never be able to give what we have not received.



…is a day when we will have more concern about our mental health, attitude, posture, and peace than we will with regards to our financial wealth.

Truly, you don’t want a billion dollars.

You want a billion beautiful thoughts, insights, and moments.

Simple, not easy.

“Simple, not easy.”

This is a great note and a reminder for everything you could ever want to be, ever want to do, or ever want to have.

Small road.

Narrow gate.

Few find it.

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