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Posts Tagged With: coping

Sunday thoughts: Tidying up, sunshine & magic

We’re already into mid-January it occurred to me this morning that I haven’t blogged since last year!

Gulp.  Life comes at us fast, especially in the new year.

2019 came at me like ..

Holidays ended, work resumed, and tripled in intensity.   It’s been a steady dose of crazy since, with not much room or time to breathe.  Early mornings, long days, lots of travel and copious conference calls.  Thankfully, a solid winter storm blew in this weekend, encapsulating us in icy roads, fresh snow, with a fridge full of leftovers and no particular place to be.

Darn.

That brings me to today ~ awake at 6:30 I hit tossed in a load of laundry, padded through the house and caught up on your blogs.

Random observations came my way and they include:

1  )   Have you heard of the “Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up book and movement afoot?   Based on her best-selling guide to de-cluttering your home, and soon-to-be TV series,  Marie Kondo espouses the virtues of sorting through everything – and I mean – every thing to determine “what sparks joy.”  If it doesn’t, it goes.   Now I am very familiar with the term “you can’t organize clutter” so I purge/donate/recycle on a regular basis.  Her advice is to start small, say with 1 drawer, and go through every piece that’s in it … I started with my sock drawer and found it can’t be opened all the way … probably because of the preponderance of black dress socks.  ~ Sigh.  I laughed, and set my sights in another direction.  If you’ve tried this approach and it’s helped you, do tell!

2 ) Last night I had every intention of delving into several new books; I’ve got a stack waiting for me, purchased with Christmas gift cards ~ my favorite.  Instead I read women’s magazines, binge-watched “Shark Tank,” laughed with hubby and chatted with my cousin.   Regardless, doing nothing and lots of it, was great therapy.  PS My favorite “Shark Tank” product so far has been this one ~ an amazing cleaning do-dadd that really does work:

3 )  Growing up in bright & sunny western Canada (Saskatchewan) I took our daily sunlight for granted. Yes winters were cold and windy but, for the most part, ALWAYS sunny.  Sunglasses and Sunblock are a necessity year round– now I live in Western Michigan, and because of our proximity to Lake Michigan (and lots of winter cloud cover) our winters are regularly dreary, dark and long.  I really struggle with lack of sunlight.

Update on my previous product review:  I cannot say enough good things about the Verilux Happy Light –  AMAZING!   In just 2 weeks of using it I cut my total coffee consumption in 1/2 and caffeine dosage from full throttle “Farmer’s coffee” to decaf by using this amazing little light.  Sitting near it first thing in the morning helps reset your circadian rhythm & will help you sleep (instead of lying in bed making 3AM “to-do” lists like I used to). 

Caution:   Do NOT use at night, you will be up for 1/2 of it, oops. 

I started out small, at 7-10 mins. a day, and have worked my way up to 30 mins. daily.  If YOU also slog through the dark days of winter, give the HappyLight Compact ($40 on Amazon) a try.  The. Best. $40. Ever. Spent! 🙂

4 )  Long-time blog readers, family and friends know I enjoy technology and gadgets.  But after our son told me how their “Alexa” interjected into their conversation, more than once,  I firmly advised him  to “never buy me one.”  My cell phone does enough eavesdropping as it is.  This Meme is about right, ha!

5 )  And, as much as technology makes our lives easier, and sometimes even healthier, there’s always going to be something about a real book that draws me in … and so does this picture:

Your turn:

  •  Are you working to “tidy up?”
    • What method works for you?
  • Any cool new-to-you gadgets to share?
  • What’s the best book you’ve read lately?

Happy Sunday!

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Categories: Attitude, Determination, Family, Fun, Home, Humor, Joy, Life, Opinion, Personal, Products I love, Self Discovery, Share, Thoughts, Travel, Uncategorized, Useful Information, Work | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

On kindness and casseroles

Hubbs always tells me I give too much away. And he’s probably right.

I do. I can’t help it, that’s how I was raised, it’s what was modeled for me from my earliest days.

When someone’s hurting, you help. When someone’s sick, you help. When someone’s struggling, you help.

The thing is, he loved that quality about me, when we met.

Nowadays, I am not so sure.

Yes, he’ll take the accolades that come our way when I do what I do … for others.  But I think that, sometimes, he wonders what’s left in there for him. He has a point, and I get what he saying:   Save some of you …  for me.

But the thing is, it’s not that complicated, convoluted, or otherwise.

It’s actually very simple:

I do what I do because that’s how I cope.

That’s how I cope when I get the news that someone I love is dying, when someone I love is trying to survive divorce, when someone I love needs a reminder that there’s still good in the world. That there are still people who will do for others … if they can.

Cooking up something comforting and lovely allows me to do something when circumstances dictate there’s nothing that can be done.

Don’t get me wrong, he’s not unfeeling.

He’s just never cooked a casserole. 🙂

He’s never experienced another telling him how much they enjoyed what his hands created.  How wonderful it was to have home-made loveliness to wake up to. How nice it was to not worry about cooking a meal.

He’s never had someone tell him how they tucked away the last piece of cheese ball to savor late at night after the chemo and through the tears when they could nibble and cry without someone there watching them.

He’s never seen the smiles Heath Bar brownies can bring to a new mother smiling through gritted teeth as a new baby wails in the background.

He’s never known it. Never done it.  How could he know?

I can’t blame him,  because if you’ve never done it, you couldn’t  possibly know that all casseroles call for one  readily-available ingredient:  kindness.

# # #

chicken spaghetti; google.images.com

I made 2 pans of chicken spaghetti last night .. recipe on my blog 🙂

How do you cope when people you love are hurting? Do you cook, clean, putter in the workshop, drink, smoke, walk, what?

Categories: Faith, Family, Food, Home, Life, Men, Personal, Recipes, Thoughts, Traditions, Uncategorized, Women | Tags: , , , , , , , | 36 Comments

And so, it begins

Thanksgiving has passed, the turkey’s put away,  and the last of the pie is gone.

I bought my first Christmas present yesterday and, for some reason, that felt like a milestone.  I’ve never started gift shopping so ~gasp~ late.

The only person that I have to ship to is Mom; with her in Canada and me here in MI, I need to “get it in gear” or her package won’t arrive on time.  That’s what yesterday’s gift was all about and it was done … online.  *Smile*

This year has been a whirlwind and I am in the center of it.  Yep, somehow, the Holidays snuck up on me.

Was it because Thanksgiving came early here in the U.S. (always the 3rd Thursday of the month, this year it “fell” sooner than later)?

Was it because I’m working two jobs and balancing that workload with the strains of oldest boy’s divorce, Mom’s health challenges, and our youngest boy’s transition to college?

Was it because we stopped hosting the fun-filled Family Christmas party?  Was doing that party what kept me organized and ahead of task, all these years?

Thinking about the Holiday and all the stress I’ve piled on myself in years past, I realized just how wonderful this Thanksgiving was.  It was calm, it was quiet, it was fun.  I wasn’t rushed, stressed or over-tired.  We had delicious food, enjoyable company and the energy to play games afterwards.

That’s what I want for Christmas, I’ve decided.

I told the boys yesterday that this is the year the Christmas of their childhood..grows up.  This year, they’re getting a few things they need and some money.  This year, I’m not standing in line for anyone.  This year, the cash they get can buy their wants .. or a tank of gas.  This year, we will have the grand kids I’m sure, but likely not on Christmas day, and that’s OK with me. Whenever we have them will be relaxed, cozy and fun.

This year, I’m giving myself permission to let Christmas not be what it always was.

How about you?  Anything about the Holidays that you want to shake up?

But I’m not quite ready to decorate … David Eppelheimer antique Christmas ornaments and tree lights. (Press Photo/Adam Bird)

Categories: Faith, Family, Growth, Holidays, Home, Joy, Life, Opinion, Thoughts, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , | 28 Comments

Time outs aren’t so bad after all

“Time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time.” –Marthe Troly-Curtin

So, I’ve written about being stressed and as sick and tired as I am of feeling that way, I’m pretty sure you, dear readers, might be sick of hearing about it, too.

You see, sometimes, in the day-to-day race that is life, I can get so caught up on the merry-go-round that I no longer hear the music; all I can hear is noise. I can no longer see the intricate carvings of the horses or enjoy the lights because it all flies past me in the blur known as “get-it-done.”

When I stop feeling exhilarated and start feeling woozy, it’s time to stop the merry-go-round and get off.

image from MILive.com

And for that reason, I’ve taken two – count ‘em – two vacation days: tomorrow and Monday.  Call ’em mental health days, call ’em what you will – I’ve checked out.

I’ll make lists and I’ll ponder, I’ll putz and I’ll organize but … I’ll also sip coffee, catch up on your blogs, daydream and hang out with old dog. I’ll get in a run or two, I’ll accomplish a few things and ignore twice as much; I’ll dine with Hubbs and chat with the kids and maybe even sleep in … just a little. I’ll watch the World Series and chat on the phone with Mom and my cousin; I’ll cook and I’ll sing and I’ll visit with friends.  I’ll take four days to step away and be my very own battery charger.

And come Tuesday, when the Wurlitzer starts cranking out that old familiar tune, maybe I’ll smile the smile of the invigorated and not the one that’s frozen and spent.

Do you make it a point to put yourself in time out?

..::..

*for more info on Grand Rapids’ very own 1928 Spillman Carousel, 1 of only 3 to have been produced, click here

Categories: Growth, Home, Life, Personal, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 32 Comments

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Connecting with People in My Path

Atypical 60

A Typical Blog. A Typical Woman. A Typical Take On Life. With An Atypical Twist!

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Arise, shine, for your light has come...Isaiah 60

Virginia Views

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Renee Johnson Writes

Novelist, Traveler, and More

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My Journey From Merchant Mariner to Mother, And Spiritual Being.

notquiteold

Nancy Roman

She's A Maineiac

just another plaid-wearin' java-sippin' girl

The View Out Here

A view in pictures, from me to you

I also live on a farm

Just another WordPress.com weblog

Wordsmith's Desk

some thoughts along the way

Meanwhile, back at the ranch...

music, poetry, musings, photography and philosophy from a woman who found her way back home and wants you to come over for a hike and a cocktail.

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