Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Daily Om Again

I can't help it, I just love the Daily Om that arrives in my email inbox each morning.

Here's the one for yesterday, and it's right up the alley I'm traveling at this point in my life. My, how the Universe aligns to help us meet our declared intention!

September 29, 2009
Getting Back to Wellness
Seven Quick Fixes To Feel Better

The signals our bodies use to tell us we need to cleanse ourselves physically, mentally, and emotionally are multifaceted and often mirror symptoms we associate with illness. If we heed these signs, we not only feel better quickly but also stave off poor health before it can start. These quick fixes for common ailments can get you started.

1. Applying pressure to the acupressure point between the thumb and forefinger can release blockages causing pain, tension, and fatigue. You can relieve a headache naturally by squeezing for 20 seconds and releasing for 10 seconds, without letting go, four times.

2. To breathe freely, irrigate your nasal passages with a neti pot and warm salt water. As you clear and soothe the sinuses, congestion associated with allergies or infection will gradually disappear.

3. Apple cider vinegar is a powerful purifying and detoxifying agent. Soaking for 20 minutes in a warm bath infused with two cups of apple cider vinegar pulls toxins from the body and can clear blocked energy.

4. The foods you eat can have a profound impact on your outlook and mood. Eating a small yet satisfying meal rich in complex carbohydrates can lift your spirit and help you let go of feelings of anger, irritability, and depression.

5. Anxiety and fear dissipate quickly when countered with conscious breathing because concentrating on the breath enables you to refocus your attention inward. You can ground yourself and regain your usual calm by taking a series of deep belly breaths as you visualize your feet growing roots that stretch miles down into the earth.

6. Though tuning out can seem counterproductive, a few minutes spent lost in daydreams or listening to soothing music can help you see your circumstances from a new angle when you feel frustrated.

7. If you feel ill health coming on, brew a wellness elixir. Simmer three sliced lemons, one teaspoon freshly grated ginger, one clove freshly minced garlic, and one quarter teaspoon cayenne pepper in five cups water until the lemons are soft and pale. Strain a portion into a mug and add honey by tablespoons until you can tolerate the taste. Drinking this potent mixture of antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal ingredients three times each day can ensure your symptoms never progress into a full-blown illness.


Monday, September 28, 2009

Keeping Body and Soul Together

Too much healthy is still too much. (The Leader of my WW group said that this past week.)

If we can remember that our physical reality is most often the result of our inner thoughts and beliefs, we can make changes more easily by going inward. By creating a mental vision of the changes we want to make in our lives, we begin shifting our belief system to more closely fit with the reality we want to create externally. (my Daily Om last Friday.)

Catching up on the past 2 weeks of "Sunday Morning" (CBS) I realize I want to visit more National Parks. I've been to some, am happy to return to them, and would like to visit parks I've never been to before. Just "being" in nature is powerful for our total health I believe.

And another segment on "Sunday Morning" about Steinway and Sons pianos brought tears to my eyes and goosebumps to my skin. I love the sound of a piano. Always have.

Finding the things that feed me is worth the effort. Good food feeds my body, movement and activity energizes my body (I refuse to call it exercise - negative connotation.) But what feeds my soul? What energizes my mind? What fills my heart?

Taking the time to prepare and eat good food is important. So is taking the time to prepare for and engage in more activity and movement. But that's only part of the story, for if I don't take time to prepare for and engage in those things which stimulate my heart, soul, and mind then I'm not whole nor complete.

I'm working on finding more wholeness.

What about you? What "feeds" you?


Sunday, September 27, 2009

This And That

So I took the blog list off my page - I still read the blogs, but I've been using my reader here at blogger and like it. :)

Heard Bill Maher say "Inertia is the enemy," on his HBO show "Real Time" this past Friday night. I thought about that a bit and realized he's so very right.

LOVE the commercial for etrade that has the baby calling an old man a "shank-a-potatmus" after the golf game. Too funny, and yes, I'm easily amused.

Have really enjoyed preparing and eating some very yummy dishes that were both healthy and satisfying. Especially wonderful when Master and I cook together. Really cool to just create from scratch without following a recipe, and having the finished product be so tasty!

Enjoyed a very fun shopping excursion Saturday to Bass Pro Shops for Master, Victoria's Secret and Bath & Body Works for me.

While at B&B Works I was able to pass on a coupon for 20% off the total purchase to the lady behind me in line since I had 2 and could only use 1. Felt good, much better than throwing it away would have felt.

Mom is doing better, obviously still aging and coping with the RA, but at least at home, and able to get around a little. Still hoping her apartment is ready soon.

Realized this past Wednesday that I felt well physically, and was grateful. Seems like the first day this school year so far that I was healthy.

Have taken steps to improve my health in order to avoid a repeat of the past month. It doesn't happen overnight, so I may need to remind myself to hang in there.

Pondering the future for me at work. Stay the course? Look for different work within my field? Change occupations? Hoping for some clear sign from the Universe to help.

All in all, life is GOOD. Very good.


Monday, September 21, 2009

Love Without Limits

Unconditional love. Loving someone without placing conditions on how you will give that love. Giving it freely in spite of imperfections in the person you give it to. Not love that says I'll love you if you change. And of course the reverse - receiving love unconditionally, without placing restrictions on how you will accept the love. Simply allowing someone to love you, in spite of your flaws, and in spite of any flaws the giver may also possess.

Loving another without limits changes throughout our lives I think. As children we love freely and give our love and adoration to those around us. We don't demand that our parents treat us better in order to have our love, children just love. As we grow things change, we make friends as we move out into the world. We find significant others in time, and perhaps later we have children. Love relationships do change and grow and evolve over time. A once close relationship grows more distant, and vice versa, depending on our needs and where we are in life.

Of course, I doubt I'll ever find anything to match the unconditional love that my dog had for me. He truly adored me and everything about me. As far as he was concerned I was perfect. Even when I got mad and yelled at him, or didn't take him for a walk, or stayed away from home too long. He was always sooooo excited to see me and loved me soooo much. He absolutely HATED being separated or away from me. No matter how bad I had been he loved me absolutely.

Yet how much more powerful it is when we are loved unconditionally by a person who is aware of our faults and weaknesses and flaws and still chooses to love us. That kind of love isn't often flowery and giggly. Instead it's the realistic eyes open love that says "I love you even though I don't love a behavior of yours. I love you without you having to be different or perform. I love the essence of you."

Both giving and receiving love without limits is humbling. It is large and full and expansive. And when that love is goes away, as in the case of a death, we feel the loss and lack keenly. There is a smallness and emptiness where there used to be fullness. We lose our security.

Loving and being loved without limits allows me to face the world and stand strong. I have the courage to meet challenges because there are people who love me in spite of my negative behaviors (and whom I love in spite of theirs.) Being accepted as we are gives us the ability to step into the light and embrace it, while allowing us to confront the darkness and overcome it. Sure, we want our loved ones to grow, improve, and change negatives into positives for their own well-being, but those negatives don't stop us from loving them.

This topic has made the rounds lately here in blogland and I wanted to mull it over because I believe it to be one of the most profound things we as humans allow into our lives. Allowing ourselves to give love without placing conditions on those we love is so important. In order to reach our full potential, to learn tolerance, and acceptance we need to give love without limits. But receiving love without limits is just as important. In order to have a sense of security and safety, to be a confident and complete person we need to accept that love.

Both sides of loving without limits are important. We cant give to others effectively if we aren't willing or able to receive. Likewise, we cannot accept this love effectively if we aren't willing to extend it as well. Giving and receiving are intertwined, 2 sides of the same coin as it were. If we have problems with either side, there's something amiss which needs to be addressed if we are to ever flourish emotionally.

And I feel like there's still so much more I'm trying to convey, more that I want to communicate about this topic and how I bring the concept more fully into my life. But I'm to the point where more words are not helpful. I guess it boils down to needing to love and be loved with no limits and restrictions in order to be fully who I am meant to be.

Of course I could just get a dog, it's the next best thing. ;)


Saturday, September 19, 2009

Yummy Pasta

So the other night I was making dinner, tired of the same old side dishes, and started poking around the pantry to see what I could come up with. I found some whole wheat penne pasta (Penne Rigate to be precise) which I decided to cook.

While the water was coming to a boil for the pasta I thought about what to DO with the cooked pasta. Not really knowing what to do, other than knowing that I wasn't in the mood to top it with a red sauce, I started out with some olive oil in the skillet. I added a diced onion, and while that cooked, I decided to use some of the abundant kale I found in my refrigerator. So I chopped that finely, and then added it to the onion. Let that all simmer for awhile, added some salt and pepper, and then tasted. Not quite right. Not terrible, but not quite there.

So I added some Chardonnay, and let that get happy together. When I tasted again it was good, but still lacking. Just didn't have the depth of flavor I was looking for. Master arrived home and after tasting the mixture suggested adding rosemary and thyme. Those flavors made a great addition, but still I felt something else was called for. I ended up following my intuition and adding a can of cream of mushroom soup. Of course it was a little thick, so Master added the rest of the Chardonnay. :)

So it all simmered together for awhile, and once the pasta was cooked I added the penne to the sauce, the yummy side dish was done, and the perfect compliment to the steaks which Master grilled.

Master thought the dish was really tasty, and told me to make a note of the ingredients/recipe so we could make it again. So that's what I just did right here! :) I do think the dish would be just as good with other types of pasta too.

** So I glance into the cabinet today and discover that the pasta I used for the dish, originally reported here as rigatoni, was in fact Penne Rigate. So I edited above (in red) just for the sake of perfectionism. :) I also changed the photo used to one of penne rather than the original pix of rigatoni. I still stand by my last sentence above - I think the sauce would work well on most any type of pasta. (Apparently it works well with both penne and rigatoni, lol!)


Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Happiness Habit

"Being miserable is a habit. Being happy is a habit. The choice is yours."
-- Tom Hopkins, sales trainer

This was the Quote of the Day in my inbox at work this morning. And I so completely agree with the statement that I decided to share. I do not have a perfect life. I don't know anyone who does actually, but lets just focus on me, lol. I have difficulties and problems, some minor, some serious. And if I chose to, I could get really down in the dumps and be depressed and blue.

As a general rule though, I don't get very depressed, typically keeping my eyes focused on my belief that the Universe will provide and that at "the end of the day" (or the end of whatever difficulty I'm coping with) all will be fine. And I guess it's that optimism which must allow me to make the happy choice.

I'm certainly not perfect, I do in fact get a little down in the dumps sometimes, but those moods do generally pass rather quickly. And I find that choosing to look on the bright side of life (with a nod to Monty Python) is more energizing than looking on the dark side. Negativity just drains my energy, to the point of incapacitation. And I mean my own negativity as well as negativity in other people. Because of that I make a conscious choice to limit, as well as I can, my exposure to negativity in any form.

This kind of choice is completely within my control, and becomes second nature the more I practice. A habit. I choose to be happy, to see good, to believe that all will be well. I choose to be positive. The problems don't change or go away, that isn't the point. Because being negative won't help the problems go away either. I choose joy, trusting and believing that all will be well. And that actually helps me cope with the difficulty more effectively since my energy level stays higher and my outlook stays more upbeat. That helps me to feel less like a victim and more capable and empowered and able to prevail.

I think some people may find this to be a rather polly-anna-ish outlook, but in reality I'm not at all polly-anna like. I'm in fact a very down-to-earth and practical and common-sensical person. But one who chooses to be happy and look on the bright side and be positive, in the face of all the same problems that most everyone has to deal with.

It works for me, and my belief is that it would work for everyone. But I won't suggest anyone else adopt this outlook or habit of happiness. This is, after all, all about me. :)


Tuesday, September 15, 2009



I mean really.

What demented sadist invented the mammogram?????

Unlike some slaves and submissives I like pain. I mean, I really like pain. I'm a masochist. It's weird and not easy to explain. But this just goes beyond the realm of likability!


It took my breath away. I saw stars.

Annually? You think I'm going to do this every year??? You're high if you think I'm going back in a year. I'll agree to 18-24 months. But that's my limit. And it's a hard limit. And before anyone starts in on me let me reassure you that there is not 1 person to whom I am related by blood who has any history of breast cancer. And. I do regular routine breast self examination, and if I felt something I would go immediately.

'nuff said.

How was YOUR day? lol


Saturday, September 12, 2009

Glimpses of Clarity

So many people having so many eye-opening thoughts and break-through moments, and other significant events and explorations to share lately.

I've been quite caught up in all my own drama, the start of the school year and loss of summer ease, Mom's move, my illness, and more.

The latest is Mom's hospitalization for the infection she's been battling for a couple years now. The infection prevents her from receiving her treatment for RA (rheumatoid arthritis) since the drugs would force the bacteria into all her joints where the bacteria would then destroy what is left of her joints and her physical abilities. So, we need to get rid of this infection once and for all, because without her RA meds she is almost unable to function independently at all.

Anyway, the urologist in her new city determined that the bacteria Mom's battling is resistant to all oral meds, and so decided to admit her to the hospital for IV antibiotics. Wonder why the urologist here didn't do the same? *pout* I'm very glad that she's getting the care and treatment she needs, and at the same time I'm beside myself that I'm not there to take care of her. None of her friends are there to visit and cheer her, and my sister isn't able, or can't make the time, to visit and spend time at the hospital. I'm trying to be calm, but I've been through lots of hospital stays with Mom and I know how to help her get the best care. How to interact with the medical folks so they know what Mom needs, even when she won't or can't articulate for herself. I remember to take her a Starbucks Vanilla Latte everyday. I stay for a few hours, help her with whatever she needs. I take her used clothing home to wash and return it clean the next day. I stop to buy supplies and things that will help her stay be easier. I buy yummy dinners for her every other day or so - even nice restaurants do carry out!

And so perhaps, even when I explain to my sister what to do to take care of Mom, she might not do it the way I did. I have no control. And I hate that. How can I be sure she's getting the best care and that her way is smoothed ahead of her if I'm not there and in charge? I can't. And there's nothing I can do about that. grrrrrr

And I think how much my struggles resemble what I've been reading in other blogs. Oh maybe not a sick loved one, or finally having to cut those apron strings after 45 years of life, but at other levels. Practicing unconditional love, the giving and receiving of it that is. Learning to be transparent in our relationships, beginning with ourselves. Learning to not make value judgments about other people's behavior, instead letting go and accepting. At a variety of levels and in myriad ways, this is what I'm reading around the bloggy places. The specific situations are different for each of us and the ways we are working through these concepts is different. But the core of our situations, at the heart, lies the universal human condition.

And that is why we've found each other, among the thousands and thousands of bloggers in this world, we've found one another because we deal with similar life and relationship issues even as we all walk such unique and individual paths. Collectively we are one, and we help ourselves and each other when we write and share on our blogs and comment on one another's blogs. When we ponder on what we've read we see how the ideas apply or don't apply to ourselves, and we grow.

We are a mutually beneficial community of people living separate lives. And I think perhaps it is the very anonymity we have here which allows us to share ourselves so honestly. Whatever it is, I'm grateful. Because it helps me to work through my own deal as I read your viewpoint and the way you handle your deal. Thank you.


Thursday, September 10, 2009

Proper English

On his 74th birthday, a man received a gift certificate from his wife. The certificate paid for a visit to a medicine man living on a nearby reservation. The medicine man was rumored to have a wonderful cure for erectile dysfunction.

After being persuaded, he drove to the reservation, handed his ticket to the medicine man, all the time wondering what was to come.

The old medicine man slowly and methodically produced a potion, which he handed to the 74 year-old.

With a grip on his shoulder, the medicine man warned, "This is powerful medicine and it must be respected. You take only a teaspoonful and then say '1-2-3'. When you do that, you will become manlier than you have ever been in your life and you will be able to perform as long as you want."

The old man was encouraged. As he walked away, he turned and asked, "How do I stop the medicine from working?"

"Your partner must say '1-2-3-4,'" the medicine man responded. "But when she does, the medicine will not work again until the next full moon."

The old man was very eager to see if the potion worked, so he went home, showered, shaved, took a spoonful of the medicine, and then invited his wife to join him in the bedroom.

When she came in, he took off his clothes and said, "1-2-3!"

Immediately, he was the manliest of men.

His wife was excited and began throwing off her clothes. And then she asked, "What was the 1-2-3 for?"
And that, boys and girls, is why we should never end our sentences with a preposition - or one will end up with a dangling participle!


Friday, September 4, 2009

Bad Day?

Today was like that Daniel Powter song, "Bad Day".

At least as I was driving home fretting over the $75 stolen out of my office today, and the repercussions that will ensue, it seemed like a bad day.

And I was missing my Mom. Can't even call and talk to her since I HAVE NO VOICE!

And I'm not well yet, I struggled through a day made worse for having missed the last day and a half.

And this, that, and the other. I could go on.

And then I remembered, that I didn't have to frame all these things in a negative way.

I could choose to change the conversation in my head and focus on the positive and place a positive spin on things. I could choose to remember that in all things I will do more than survive, I will thrive. Because I choose to.

And it helped to remember that I had allowed my blood sugar to drop, through improper nutrition today. (Let's forget the part about me being a nationally credentialed School Nutrition Specialist, k?) But at least remembering the lack of food today helped to explain a portion of my "oh woe is me" whining. Which then helps me to know that after I eat something I'll feel better.

And in the song? Daniel sings about needing a blue sky holiday. That made me smile - maybe that means I'm supposed to go visit Elle. Now that is a splendid idea indeed!

And I'm smiling as I think of it, and laughing at something inane Master just said (no disrespect intended but I'm having trouble picturing a Naval Carrier Ship parked in our driveway!)

And while none of the gloomy things I was lamenting to myself about a few hours ago has changed even one little whit, I can still be happy and smile and have a GOOD day. Has Daniel got a song about that??


Thursday, September 3, 2009

You Won't believe This!

At least I don't believe it.

But here we are, the 4th day of the new school year, and I'm at home. This past Monday evening I developed a sore throat. Hmm, odd. But no worries. Took a hot shower and some advil and went to sleep. The first day back for students had gone well, and I'm sure I just talked too much,

Tuesday morning, day 2, I wake up and have no voice. And my throat hurts. I go to work, and manage somehow to do my job, even as I get worse as the day goes on. I come home and take a nap, and again, as the evening progresses I find I'm getting worse yet. So off to the Dr I go, where they find I have an upper respiratory infection, give me some prescriptions, and directions to stay home for the next few days.

Well, I feel like death warmed over, but it's only the third day of school, so Wednesday morning I drag my sorry ass into work. Two hours later I drag it back home, and here I am again today.

And the stupid part of all this? I'm more worried about my boss being angry that I'm not at work than I am about actually being sick.


Sometimes this submissive, people pleaser personality just does not work in my best interest!

Nevertheless, I'm certain I'll be better soon, and back to myself. I'd forgotten how awful these types of infections can be since I rarely get them anymore. About 15 years ago I had major sinus surgery, including repairing a deviated septum, cleaning out sinus cavities, and re-drilling sinus drainage holes. Prior to that surgery I stayed infected (for almost a year.) Since that time I really do rarely develop one of these infections. Lucky that!

But really, getting sick the first day of school? Please. Who does that??? lol