Peace, love and joy to you.

Farm-fresh flowers

I’ve started watching travel videos.

https://youtu.be/0GZSfBuhf6Y

I’ve reflected on apartment dwelling.

https://youtu.be/RL7BECNn-RI

I’ve been trying to be present for life in the now.

I have been weeding things out everyday to better organize my life, and feel happier.

So I’ve decided to take a little hiatus from my daily blogging.

Sorry. I just need a break.

Exercise at the gym and playing ping pong with my life partner, husband and best friend Jim makes me motivated to be a better woman.

At least it helps me get focused on creating a better home-life.

Hubby is fully retired now.

I still work, albeit part-time.

Although he is not currently employed, hubby works at home to make the place cooler (installing air-conditioning,) pitching in on chores with gardening, cooking and being my chauffer when we go out together. ❀

He is a helpful husband.

Even though we haven’t got any vacation plans until November, every day spent at home with hubby is like a vacation for me, especially when the weather is nice.

While growing up in the big city of Toronto was over-stimulating and fun, living in outstate Minnesota has its perks as well.

Fresh air, parklands, Farmer’s markets, a big fenced-in backyard, and ample free time to enjoy it all is great!

Hubby likes to keep current on the news.

I like to keep current on the birds at the bird-feeder, the local temperature, recent amounts of rainfall, and what to eat.

Love this!

Thursday Book Review: FDT

Coffee and goals

So what is future-directed therapy?

You want something special in your life? 😏

Something good to look forward to?

Then find the light at the end of your tunnel!

Find someone or something that brings you up.

Planning a vacation?

Really want to do or be something more?

It’s all up to you!

You choose.

You decide.

You discover.

Every Thursday I will give an inkling and quick review of what book I am reading, and/or studying. πŸ“–

The book I am studying this week is called, “Think Forward to Thrive.”

It is an enlightening and enlivening book with a purpose.

It helps people discover meaningful goals to work towards.

Plan to be happy 😊

Some goals I’ve set for this summer.

Daily goals

Ode to my Catalpa Tree

My Beautiful Mature Catalpa Tree

In my back yard there are lovely blossoms scattered all around my Catalpa tree.

Under my Catalpa

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Catalpa

I sat under the tree inspired to write some poetry.

Catalpa blossoms
Gorgeous fruit pod and blossoms of the Catalpa tree
Heart-shaped leaves

This is what I came up with.

“Ode to My Catalpa Tree.”

By Amy Zents

“Showering Spring flowers sail off my Catalpa tree,

Bearing pods that hang like handmade jewelry.

A tree so stunning beyond compare,

Your heart-shaped leaves so lovely,

Make me stop and stare!”

Lovely State of Bloom

Hubby with a lovely  peony

Our beautiful peonies were in a lovely state of bloom for only 2 or 3 days.

At first the blossoms looked very promising while they were in the bud.

Then one morning we stepped out in the backyard and saw the beautiful peonies in full bloom.

Gorgeous Peonies
Light pink
Fuchsia-coloured Peony

We were so happy to behold the stunning pink flowers!

But, then we got a storm. There was a lot of wind and rain.

The next morning there appeared to be a rusty edge on the blooms.

We simply accepted the results and went on as usual.

Sadly, today there is little left of our three day blossoms in their lovely state of bloom.

But, I admit they were inspiring and glorious while they lasted.

We look forward to seeing them again next Spring!

Worn and weathered flowers
Lovely State of Bloom

Wednesday Diet Wisdom: What They Don’t Tell You

Food and drink are only two parts of the weightloss puzzle. There is more to it.

It’s amazing how many things contribute to your health and fitness.

For one thing, consider your metabolism.

Some people can digest certain foods better than others. Some people can burn more calories than other people can.

For those in the Western world, our high-fat and high-carb SAD (standard American diet) is the harbinger of many terrible diseases.

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0925443908001828#:~:text=Abstract,%2C%20metabolic%20syndrome%2C%20and%20diabetes.

Drastic dieting doesn’t help either.

Besides being unsustainable, your body might slow down your BMR (basal metabolic rate) because it’s afraid you are going to quit eating altogether. Then it will be really hard to lose weight.

The best way to increase your metabolic weight is exercise.

No one tells you about your fat mass, skeletal muscle, viseral fat, or bone mass among other physical metrics that affect your health.

You are a chemical marvel, and your body is an amazing and organic, ever-changing, ever-responsive constant companion who should be loved and cared for as long as you live.

Regardless of your shape and size, educating yourself about how your unique body is composed and how it reacts to nutrients and nourishments is vital.

I am still counting calories and I am beginning to lift weights to improve my BMR and get stronger, among other things.

Weight-training is great for overall health.

There is so much they haven’t told you about your wonderful self.

Take care of your body, support it, love it, nourish it and exercise it and your body will take care of you in amazing ways, especially as you get older!

I may not be skinny yet, but I love life and I love my amazing body now that I have learned more about it, and how to care better for it!

P.S. All diet advice by me is my opinion and does not reflect on any professional advice. Lose weight at your own risk.

An old-fashioned dream

An after-supper walk

We still play Pokemon Go.

At night my husband and I go for walks together.

We talk and we play Pokemon Go on our smartphones.

I can’t tell you how happy I am living in a residential neighborhood.

After growing up in the inner city, living in an apartment building, I love the contrast of just walking out the front door and up the tree-lined street.

It’s an old-fashioned dream come true.

Our minds, hearts, and homes

Whatever happened to honor and respect? 
Some people don’t care what they say, what they look like, or even live like, much less do they care if it offends you!

You may call it freedom, but it comes with a high price.

I understand some people have real mental issues. There are people​ who have real problems dealing with their issues, and would like to let everybody know it.

On a different note, many have been enticed into believing the world owes them a living, and they whine to everybody who will listen to garner pity for their feelings, or else make major excuses to justify themselves.

No matter how you slice it, most people have lost touch with two basic human values, honor and respect.

It is evident everywhere you look.

So what’s to be done about it?

The underlying principle is always the same. It boils down to personal responsibility.

And the question to ask is always the same. 

Who or what do you want to be? 

You decide to be the person who shows honor and respect because your attitude affects everybody in one way or another, including you.

It’s time for an honor and respect wake-up call.

Start with yourself and you are guaranteed you will make your life easier, better and more valuable.
If you show honor and respect for yourself in everything you do and say, others will respond in a very good way. 

Don’t tear yourself down, and don’t beat yourself up. Be the change you want to see in the world. 

After that, show respect and honor to your family. Show respect and honor with people at work and at play.

I don’t wish to lecture anyone, but I believe the lack of honor and respect is at the core of society’s​ problems.

Things won’t get better until a sacred sense of honor and respect pervades all the spaces in our minds, hearts and homes. 

How to make head space in a cluttered mind

So many things to think, do and worry about.

Feeling that less is best is different than living up to that belief.
My attempts at making space in my home by getting rid of clutter has been very difficult for me, but I continue the quest. 

I also want to create space in my mind. Lately I’ve been doing three different things in the morning to calm myself and center myself.

Here is my regimen:

1.

I light a sweet-smelling garden rain candle, and I set the timer for 5 minutes. In that span of time I try to let go of all thoughts that intrude in my head.  It’s amazing what I think about when I stop and listen to what I think. 

2. 

Next, for five minutes I do stream-of-consciousness writing. I write whatever thoughts come into my head. My chicken scrawl is only legible to me because I don’t want others to be able to read it or for me to incriminate myself!

3.

Last, but not least, I review what I’ve written. I look and see what my concerns, actions, accomplishments and fears are. I notice when I complain and when I congratulate myself for doing things I didn’t want to have to do. I notice the recurring themes.

Summary

I’ve only been doing this practice for a few days. So far the thing that I’ve discovered is that I really like living a low pressure, stress-free existence.

I’m raising my consciousness to appreciate my downtime. Although I think about the future, I also try and become more present. It’s not always easy when anticipating a yucky task or chore, but it’s nice to know that I’ve carved out a tiny little niche in which to meditate and reflect on what I think. 

However, I don’t think the goal of meditation is to think, but to empty your mind. 

I’m not quite there yet.

Let go and love you!

You deserve flowers!

For years and years I walked around feeling bad. Yes, I felt sorry for myself. There is no pity for someone who feels wounded, hurt and used. Others just don’t know or understand. They don’t want to either.
I came to a point when I quit hoping other people would solve my dilemmas. There was nothing they could do to take back the hurt that was caused anyway.

Most of all, I really wanted to be happy.

I read somewhere that happiness is sexy!

This thought changed my life.

But it was only a start.

I still had issues related to my past.

I still felt discouraged, as I pretended to be happy.

Then I realized I not only need to be happy, so as to be attractive and sexy, but I need to value myself much, much more!

In the past, I was often kinder to others than to I was to myself.

I valued others more, and thought I was worth much less. I seemed to attract only people who were bad for me, who put me down and used me.

As I mature, I look at all my work and my accomplishments, my I.Q.of 143, and I think to myself, while no two people are alike, self-preservation is inherent. It is right to care for others, but it is necessary to love myself too.

Preservation of one’s dignity and sanity comes from self-acceptance and personal responsibility, and no one tells you that.

So, others hurt, used, and abused me. I was the victim of various crimes and emotional cruelty. I let that go.

Every day I choose to become the director of my life. I don’t let others or what they say or do get in my way.

Neither should you.

Time to pull up your big girl or big boy pants and fight for your right to party!

Enjoy your life.

Remember, happiness and high self-esteem is sexy!

Let go and love you!

You deserve to be happy too!