Keep MLK’s Dream Alive

mlk As we pause to reflect on the ideals of racial equality and social justice Martin Luther King stood for, the convergence of MLK’s dream of non-violence could not be more at a crossroads.

We honor MLK on the same day as the inauguration of the first black president to his second term. Like many of you, I feel a deep privilege to have President Obama lead our country.

MLK urged non-violent activists to transform the strength of their passion and the justice of their cause, into "compelling power." He taught us that we are not powerless -- when enough people are outraged, we can put a stop to destruction.

Whether the intersection of plaguing issues are those of the 1960’s -- civil rights and anti-war, or the issues that threaten to potentially devastate our future -- climate change and gun violence; it’s time to take a close look at those who represent the public good, and demand a better future.

This starts with President Obama, but it also lies with us — the American people. We must remain committed to MLK's spirit of cooperation and collaboration, and use our voice against those who fight to destroy MLK’s dream of freedom, justice, and equality for all.

As Pres. Obama said in his second inaugural speech, "We are made for this moment, and we will seize it – so long as we seize it together."

I sincerely believe if we are going to live up to the extraordinary vision of MLK, we must open our hearts to peace and dedicate a portion of our lives to a better future -- together.

Credit: MLK Patchwork Portrait by MelindaJonesArt via Apartment Therapy

Keep The Peace With A DIY Peace Wreath

As someone who blends holiday traditions, believe me, peace binds it all together. The universal message of peace is always in season. Throughout the holidays we sing of Peace on Earth and Good Will Towards...Men!?!

OK, here's a good place to start.

Isn't it about time we ditched the men-only lingo?

Now that we have that straightened out...

What do you do about family members who don't exude peaceful, easy feelings?

Embedded in my Steps For Creating Peace...Someday post is one of my favorite holiday songs -- Stevie Wonder's, Someday At Christmas.

Don't you just love that song?

Becoming Minimalist addressed the gift of creating overdue family peace...

5 Steps To Create Peace At Home

1. Determine to be responsible for your attitude, not others. (I'll let the over 90 yr-old relatives off the hook on the...Good Will Towards Men-thing.) 2. Embrace humility and forgive. (Not touching this.) 3. Accept disagreement and put it behind you. (Easy. Done.) 4. Take the first step. (Here you go...) 5. Create a Peace Wreath.

Let's share peace, even with those who push non-peaceful buttons. Create a handmade spin on the traditional holiday wreath.

DIY Peace Wreath

What you need:

4 wire hangers or a wreath form floral wire wire cutters pliers evergreen branches

What to do:

1. With the pliers straighten two coat hangers and form them into a circle. 2. Hook the ends together by twisting the wire. 3. Bend the other hanger wire into a circle making sure it is about 1″ smaller than the first one. 4. Hook the ends together, forming a circle. 5. Take the fourth hanger and cut and wrap it to form a peace symbol in the inside circle 6. Cut branches to 4-6″ lengths. 7. Gather the branches into bundles. 8. Secure the bundles with the floral wire. 9. Lay a bundle on the form and tightly wrap it with wire. 10. Without cutting the wire, add another bundle so that it overlaps the bottom half of the previous one. 11. Repeat around. 12. Cover peace symbol in the same overlapping manner. 13. Make a wire loop on top or use the hanger hook to attach.

Don't forget to add a note and include one of these quotes:

“Peace is not merely a distant goal that we seek, but a means at which we arrive at that goal.” Martin Luther King, Jr. “When the power of love overcomes the love of power, the world will know peace.” Jimi Hendrix “Each one has to find his peace from within. And peace is its own reward.” Mahatma Gandhi “All we are saying is give peace a chance.” John Lennon