Friday, December 17, 2010

Stress, Candy, Fat, Fried Stuff, Happy Holidays!

As if the added money stress isn't enough, the added foods that you wouldn't normally eat could virtually kill you. It doesn't have to be that way. Take a deep breath, and think about the season. This is the season to be joyful for the things that you have.

If you have good health and clean, conscious eating habits, not to worry. If you have high blood pressure, or high cholesterol, you just need to be a little more conscious.

First of all, if your blood pressure goes into a fight or flight mode and you're feeling edgy and nervous, your blood glucose is going to elevate too. Adding that wonderful chocolate candy, along with those awesome cream cheesy appetizers isn't a good idea.

Before going to a holiday party, I would suggest having some simple appetizers before you leave home. Try to stay away from carbs. Celery and low fat cheese is a good one. An apple, banana, or even some left over vegetables would suffice. This will keep you from inhaling the cheesy, gooey food table once you have a glass of wine.

Relax, and have a joyful holiday season. Your healthy lifestyle will be back in order by January 1, the new decade. Merry Christmas, and Happy New Year!

Kathy D.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Mama Grizzlies Feed Their Own Babies First. A Message To Sarah Palin

Like most people, I watch the political news and shake my head at some of the rhetoric that abounds. In my voting lifetime, I have studied the issues and voted for each one with a carefully chosen checkmark. I can’t be bamboozled into voting a straight party ticket, because each issue affects me and my country differently.

I’ve never stuck a bumper sticker on my car or a sign in my yard probably because I’ve never been particularly adamant about a candidate or an issue. Diplomacy works for me.

Today, I’m going to change my stand and speak loudly. Sarah Palin has taken an important issue and bastardized the story to an unforgivable, non-factual level.

Last week, Sarah Palin made a visit to a Pennsylvania school delivering cookies to the children. Her speech was centered around the government taking over what we eat in what I speculate was an attempt to attack Michelle Obama’s campaign for healthier school lunch programs. I won’t be convinced that the First Lady is leading a left wing conspiracy, or that it is a form of socialism or "big" government..

First of all, The Department of Social Services has been in place for many years. This Department was designed in most states “to protect vulnerable children and adults from abuse and neglect.” This department aids homeless people, abused children, and I assume children that are being raised by their siblings while their Mother travels around the country promoting propaganda.

It is somebody’s responsibility to show a positive example to the millions of obese middle school children who have high cholesterol, diabetes, and even heart disease. More than 37% of our children are obese! It doesn’t matter if the parents are too poor to feed the children, or if the parents are leaving other children to make the family meal decisions, children are in need of government protection as their parents are neglecting their health.

This is not a topic befitting defiance. This is a nationwide crisis, and should be treated as such. I assure you Sarah Palin, that if a baby grizzly was hungry, Mama would not be traveling the country with a personal agenda. She would feed those babies herself.

If you’re so worried about leaving our children with too much debt, you should begin with an agenda that assures that our children will live that long.

Americans are hungry, and our children are starving and undernourished. I dare you to defy that.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Yowza. Where did the summer go?

Flippin winter is approaching in Colorado. Again. The third winter that I thought that I would no longer be here for. Recession? We built the house to sell in 2007. Tried in 2008, 2009, and now settling in for the 2010 winter season.

There are about 40 of my final tomatoes ripening on the kitchen counter. Believe me, we salvaged every single tomato possible! We're hanging on to the last bit of what we hope will be the last garden at our suburban Colorado home. Check out these gorgeous vegetables!

I've dried seeds from all of the vegetables, prepared the soil for next spring, and hopefully, I can pass the garden on to a new owner. Happy Halloween everybody!

Monday, August 2, 2010

My Garden ...

Man alive, this years garden is the best one that I've ever had. Of course, being organic, I have my grasshopper friends back, and I allow them to eat the bean leaves again. Damn, I hate when I do that! They don't bother the beans themselves, so I say "live and let live."
The tomatoes are starting to come and they're GIANT! I love the summer! I was born in July and I am of summer stock, for sure.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

It Doesn't Have To Be Yoga

Yoga is a wonderful practice. I want to begin this article with nothing but praise for the people fortunate enough to be daily practicing Yogis. I aspire to be like you! However, for the sake of researchers, seekers, and stiff people out there, I’d like to offer them a personal training session merely focused on their stiffness, and pre-exercise-begin-exercising-at-all, assisted flexibility program.

The purpose of yoga practice is to prepare the body and mind for meditation. This requires complete silence and stillness. There are various traditions, beliefs, postures, hand postures, breathing techniques, and words from Sanskrit that pass before you in your journey, and if you happen to drop in to a beginner yoga class, it appears that all of the other “beginners” already know the Vinyasa flow that goes with the Sun Salutation sequence, AND can already touch their toes.

After 30 years in the fitness business, I’ve read the Bhagavad-Gita, and all of the traditional required reading yoga books. I’ve attended the various styles of yoga presentations, and I have just recently come to a new awareness about me and flexibility. I have discovered that for me and many of my clients, becoming proficient in gentle stretching, while maintaining good posture, breath, and taking time to completely relax is a task of its own.

The trend in clubs and studios the world over is Yoga and Pilates. Everybody is doing it! That still doesn’t mean that it is the right program for all of us. My solution to those that have been embarrassed in a beginning yoga class, but still have the desire to be relaxed and meditative like Yoga People is to follow a basic plan as your starter.

It’s true that yoga postures or Asanas are designed to cleanse the body while bringing energy to certain centers. These concepts can begin with the following guidelines;

Breathe in slowly, expand the abdomen, then the ribcage, and finally the upper portion of the lungs. Then, breathe out in the same manner, letting the abdomen cave in as you exhale. I prefer to breathe in and out through my nose, although there are no specific rules about it, nasal breathing is considered better for several reasons. The health benefits include filtering the air from the external environment through the sinuses to the lungs. The sinuses do their natural job of filtering the air as it enters the lungs while the smaller diameter of the sinuses create pressure in the lungs during exhalation. This allows the lungs to have more time to extract oxygen from them. When there is proper oxygen-carbon dioxide exchange, the blood will maintain a balanced pH. If carbon dioxide is lost too quickly, as in exhaling through the mouth, oxygen absorption is decreased. Also, by breathing through the nose as opposed to the mouth, thirst and dehydration are decreased.

There’s no need to breathe so deeply (in the beginning) that you feel like passing out, but if you are just beginning to incorporate a breathing routine into your day, pay attention to how often you are holding your breath. Your normal breathing should include an even inhalation of 1 count, hold for 3-4 counts, exhale for 2 counts. This should be a constant, even cadence all during your day.

When exercising, whether it be stretching, or picking up a package, always exhale on exertion. Inhale, then lift, and exhale. Or, if you are stretching, breathe evenly, and perform your stretch on the exhale, then keep breathing evenly. You will build your breath and movements into a rhythmic sequence. There will be no Sanskrit words to memorize, no postures that hurt your knees, just breathing and stretching being sure to include the four basic movements. They are, forward bending, back bending, side bending, and twisting.

Once you have developed a comfortable breath, it doesn’t matter if you are standing, kneeling, or sitting in a chair, you will begin by lengthening your spine. This is done by expanding the rib cage through breathing, reaching up over your head to become taller, or on your hands and knees, pulling back or raising like a cat. However you go, the spine should be safely warm and long before you begin side bending or twisting.

Once the spine is lengthened and warmed, forward bending is an easy move. Again, this can be done while standing, sitting, or kneeling. You will advance this move as you become more flexible, but don’t push it if you’re not.

The next natural move would be backward bending. As a beginner, simply leaning backward while standing will be good enough. Place your hands at the back of your rib cage, inhale, then exhale as you lean back.

Now, you are ready for some bending at the waist. This shouldn’t be anything too aggressive, just enough of a stretch that you can comfortably breathe with and hold for at least 30 seconds. Save the twisting for last, and again, begin with enough of a twist to feel a stretch, but not to torque your back.

Now that you have begun to breathe properly into the exertion, you are ready to design a full routine including all of the basic moves holding each for 30 seconds, while breathing properly throughout.

For the first several sessions, you should go through this routine which includes each of the directional stretches that are included in the Yoga Asanas. Become comfortable with the stretches, as well as your breathing. End with breathing only and sitting quietly for 5 minutes.

Once you have perfected this basic stretch sequence and become comfortable with your breath, sitting quietly, and moving slowly, you will be ready to move forward to learn more about Yoga. If Yoga is not what you’re looking for, you might find a Personal Trainer to lead you into a more aggressive flexibility program. Once you have perfected this preliminary program, you will be ready for more!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

A Personal Trainer's Checklist For Successful Weight Loss

Personal Trainers use a variety of motivational methods to encourage people to lose weight. One Trainer on a popular TV show uses humiliation. While there are a variety of methods, I prefer to motivate weight loss clients by encouraging them to visualize what they want, then pledging to be fully committed to making it happen.
There is no place for disturbed emotions in your quest to improve yourself. For example, to want to be thin because your X Husband’s new girlfriend is thin, is centered around too much negative emotion. You should be passionate about your success, but not vindictive.

In my experience as a Personal Trainer, I have worked with numerous populations including youth, military, celebrity, pro athlete, geriatric, and a bit of everything else. I have found that there are behaviors to be encouraged, and some to be avoided in order for living beings to achieve success, and there appears to be uniformity across populations. People need encouragement and they enjoy rewards. Rewards come in how you feel when you achieve success, not in cupcakes.

Some of my suggestions may make people think that I am too easy on clients, however, I believe that each individual needs to find whatever positive method of thinking, eating, and self care that they can live with, and will ultimately lead to success. We each have individualized stressors that have caused us to become over weight and out of shape. We need to deal with or remove those stressors to back out of the excess weight the same way that we gained it. It helps to set realistic goals, and then examine the requirements to achieve those goals. Here are some suggestions;

Do what you can to get your head into it. Whatever you can do to visualize the joy that you will feel when you find success, try to picture that joy. Again, don’t do it so that you will look better than your X’s new partner, do it so that you will feel proud of yourself while becoming healthier. Many people carry extra weight specifically because of emotional relationships, so you must make this journey about yourself and your body, about your personal joy and success, and not about hurt feelings. Surround yourself with positive and supportive people. You will share great joy as you pass each milestone. This personal joy feels better than pie tastes. Believe it.

Pretend as though this is the first time that you have attempted to improve your life through better nutrition and a more active lifestyle. Leave all past attempts behind, and try to avoid the words “diet” and “failure.” Find a new eating plan. If you have never counted calories, I recommend that you try it at this time. Choose something that you believe will work for you. Of course, you must maintain a nutritional balance. You cannot be healthy and successful by going on a ridiculous diet. Eating only pineapples, or ice cream, or peanut butter might shock your body into dropping a few pounds, but when you “cheat” and have some bacon or butter along with it, you’re in worse shape than if you had stayed on the bad track that you were already on! I recommend the standard food pyramid, … Easy on the grains.

Find new ways to love, comfort, and reward yourself. When you lose any small amount of weight that affects how your clothes look on you, buy something new. If you plan on losing a lot of weight, shop at the thrift store, and consign your new items when you outgrow them. You won’t spend much, and you will always have a new look including positive changes.

Learn about exercise. Be sure to check with your doctor and any medications that you are taking before you start an exercise program. Consult with a Personal Trainer, or find whatever you feel comfortable doing. If you feel more comfortable keeping your body under cover until you lose the first several pounds, that is okay. A large number of people who try to lose weight, drop out before they reach their goal, so you should focus on success, however you can make it work. There are many FitTV programs, DVD’s, or public classes. Whatever you do, find something that works for you. Walking, any speed, any distance is always better than nothing.

Make a deal with yourself that you will park farther away from the store and walk a part of the way. There are many occasions during the day where you can use your body rather than your car. Yes, you have the time. No, it’s not too windy to walk. These are the excuses that you use, but they’re not valid. Rather than treat them as hassles and excuses, use them as reasons to celebrate successes. You can purchase a pedometer for only a few dollars, and you might be shocked at what a difference you can make in your calorie expenditure. This small change will surely change your body size.

If it is your choice to buy a bike or treadmill to use in the privacy of your own home, I would suggest doing that. Remember, this time it is about success, so you must not buy a piece of equipment only to let it die in the garage. This is why I recommend consulting with a Personal Trainer before you begin. An experienced Trainer can help you to try out the different cardio machines and how comfortable that you are on each one. Certain back problems or knee problems can determine if you will be more comfortable on a treadmill or stationary bike, which could affect if you stay with it or not.

Ultimately, weight loss comes from more calories burned than consumed. If certain foods are a problem for you, count calories and become accountable for them. You will be amazed at how many calories you might consume in pasta or nuts that you are assuming are “good for you.” You will also witness how quickly one piece of pepperoni pizza can consume your daily calorie allotment.

Avoid events or people that are emotionally upsetting. If you have the choice, and can avoid a holiday with the relatives, do it. In the long haul, you will need to learn that these people are only triggers that cause YOU to behave irrationally by over eating, but they cannot control your behavior. Again, that is an excuse that you use. This is about your own health, not how other people act.

As you begin to feel stronger, push harder, raise the bar, and achieve even better results! Think positively. Picture how great you will look in your new clothes. Feel joyful about your good health. This is about how you feel, and now is the time for you to get started.

Friday, May 21, 2010

The Non-Action Committee

Al and I had a meeting the other night. Or, should I say, non-meeting. We haven’t quite been able to put our finger on what it is that has been frustrating us lately, but this encounter hit the bullseye!

I had wondered, up to this point, how a guy like John Edwards said one thing, yet while looking people in the eye and shaking their hands, his head was somewhere else. Completely, somewhere else.

The non-meeting that I am referring to is an arranged meeting with a man that is a part of every committee for action regarding our community and residence, that we wanted to discuss some general problems and frustrations. There was nothing hostile, simply some issues like common area lawns being overlooked in the mowing process for the past few summers. This summer, our home is for sale, and maintaining the entrance to the neighborhood is a specific expectation.

First, we got; “One thing that I promise you is that we will follow this thing through …” Then, we got; “Well, we don’t really know who officially owns that entry way, and if we mow it, we might be trespassing.” TRESSPASSING? FOR MOWING AROUND THE SIGN THAT HAS YOUR NEIGHBORHOOD NAME ON IT? I could feel Al’s frustration. He simply said “thank you for your time.” I, of course, couldn’t let it go. “Well, it has to be done.” That was my only response. Then we got; “Change will happen, but these things don’t happen over night.”

In my analytical style, I have been laying awake wondering if this man is on the Board of Directors for British Petroleum too. What is with people who want power but don’t want to do the job? They even try to schmooze their way out of it. We need action. We need people who want to work. The world is too fragile, and our money is too hard earned to be schmoozed.

No matter what your political agenda, I encourage you to vote in every election that involves you. In order to get a fair majority in any election, people need to become more involved and claim their vote. There are a lot of new and hot and important issues that will show up on ballots for the next several years, that if you have an opinion, you should claim your votes in each issue.

Personally, I can’t tolerate one more non-meeting with never ending lip service.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

This Is Not A Disposable Planet

Mother Earth has a problem. Hot flashes, cold flashes. Volcanoes, tornados, sinkholes, earthquakes, tsunamis. Plastic in the sea. This oil spill is really making her sick. Do people realize that this is not a disposable planet?

We don’t deserve a space program. What will we do? Take over another planet? There’s only a handful of planets and there are a gazillion people. This won’t work.

People, PLEASE. We have got to chill out. If you don’t recycle, please, start. Energy exploration is important, but must become more responsible. The problem in the gulf is NOT an isolated incident. I live in Western Colorado. I know this for a fact. We’ve had natural gas bubbling up into a creek. I had a wrecked gas truck leaking gas into the creek on my property where my horses drink. Did someone come to my door to tell me? No. Were my horses standing right by the water? Yes. Had it not been for a neighbor, I never would have known.

Our world situation is scarry. Some people are blaming the current administration. Seriously? How could an administration cause reckless drilling for the past 10 years? That makes no sense.

Time to stop bickering and blaming. It’s time to start nurturing the planet that will feed our grandkids. Please, people! Do it.

Friday, April 30, 2010

The Kentucky Derby

I found myself contemplating the Derby today. It is no secret that I am a horse lover and the Author of a book on proper horse conditioning. It includes a section on techniques for massage and hydrotherapy. I got so tired of watching people take their horses out and running them with cold muscles. It would often lead to behavioral problems or even serious injury. Often, the rider who didn’t warm the horse properly would call the horse “stupid.” Man, that would bother me. I wrote the book to give these riders an idea of how to prevent a cold horse from refusing or becoming injured.

I’ve worked with a lot of horses in my life. I’ve seen the ones that are improperly handled grow to be angry and dangerous. I’ve also seen the ones that are owned by women who spoil them to death. Each horse has its own journey, just like the rest of us.

Every year when thoroughbred racing season comes around, I see the animal advocates hovering around proclaiming “animal abuse.” I also watch the wealthy owners in their big hats wanting to win millions of dollars at the expense the animal. Abuse? Not so much. Some of these people give as much to these animals as they take. Some of them.

I have seen trainers and handlers back side at the track acting like idiots, and I’ve seen others spoiling the horses to a better life than I have. It’s an individual journey. I know some horses that live to compete. When they hear the sounds of the track, they can’t wait to run. Horses run in the wild, it's natural.

Okay, I have to consider the confinement, the conditions (hard ground, lots of travel, overuse, starting too young, fatalities,) and I have to re-consider some of the practices like starting them too young, but many runners that are properly trained are strong and live to have long careers followed by a stud career with lots of grass and grain.

So, to those that are out there picketing this weekend, I am happy that you are a voice in what you perceive as abuse. For me, I think that if someone is abusing an animal, it should be taken case by case, and that person should be prosecuted. Yes, lots of racehorses are drugged and abused, I agree with that. On the other hand, some of these horses are trained athletes that love what they do. They would do it for free. They would do it for a single apple. They LOVE to race.

I had to retire my 27 year old Quarter Horse Buddy a few years back. He was fit and conditioned for his entire life. Believe me, that horse LOVED to run. We both loved to run. Then, we would both get a massage. Animal abuse? I just can’t commit to that.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Get What You Want By Building The Path

Socrates was the man of many questions. In his quest for answers and solutions, he would ask question after question that would lead to more questions until he was satisfied that he had gotten to the bottom of the dilemma.

What would the answer be if you were asked about the passion that lies hidden deep within your soul? Have you ever asked yourself what you would be doing if you could change your life and live your passion? More often a person will say; "I could never move there." Or; "I can't do that. My family would never agree to moving there." The problem is that they are speculating that the options are impossible. That speculation is what prevents many people from enjoying their dreams. Why? Sometimes people assume that they cannot afford something, or that it is out of the question before they explore all of their realistic options. I suggest that you go there by asking the questions, and discovering the answers!

Take a chance on your dreams. You've only got this one life. Your dreams might be realized if you would only believe in them. We sometimes feel as though we have no right to pursue our dreams because they might affect those around us, when, in fact, a change in attitude or latitude could possibly positively affect the entire family.

Socratic questioning is a form of coaching that encourages a person to move forward by answering their own personal inquiries. When you begin to become dissatisfied with a job, or a relationship, or even your own behavior, you should take a minute to check yourself. There are six main areas of life that a coach might ask for you to grade yourself. It would be nice to have a complete balance, because this is the sound beginning of deliberate and responsible change.

Ask yourself how you feel about the different areas of your life. If you don't get a clear answer, ask another question, and another. For example, if you could live anywhere, work anywhere, or be with anyone, what would it look like? Try to see it. If you can't see it because you think that it's impossible, humor yourself. Try again. How would it feel? How would YOU feel? If you want to lose weight, how do you see yourself? How would you feel? Would it change your relationships? The best way to get your answers and achieve your goals is to ask these questions. Then, no matter how difficult, start answering them.

The six areas of self exploration are; personal, spiritual, financial, professional, relationships, and wellness. So, starting with your personal self, how are you? On a 100% scale, how centered do you feel? If you wish that you could move to a different state, you need to consider that. What is it about your personal life that might not be right for you right now? How necessary is it to change? Or, maybe things are well. Great!

The next area is spiritual. It's not really necessary to attend a Sunday church service to be spiritual. Being kind to others, animals, and yourself is in itself a positive, spiritual attribute. Do you find quiet time? Maybe some meditation? Where do you draw your inspiration from? On a 100% scale, how spiritual do you think that you are? Having quiet time to talk to yourself and think about yourself is spiritual enough. Just a little time away from email and phones is good. Finding an inspirational source can be beneficial. This can be anything in nature like walking on the beach, or even riding a horse. If you feel as though you don't take enough quiet time, or if you have graded yourself low here, you might find time to reflect in the shower, or while driving. It's good to check in with yourself now and then.

The next area of your life that you should explore is financial. This is such a big one for most people today. So much has been lost, but a recovery plan should always be on your table. When your finances are under control, the other areas of your life seem to be more at ease. If you have graded yourself low here, now is a great time to start the recovery plan. This area will begin to recover on its own when you clear up other issues like your professional health. Remember, nothing is too small when you begin recovering financially. Just think if you had saved five dollars a paycheck ever since you started working. I know that I would be a millionaire. An EBay account where you make a buck at a time can be helpful. Just do something. If you are looking to live your passion and not have to have a job working for others, you should think like an entrepreneur, no matter how small. This is an area that I would ask my client to commit to a plan with a set goal. Finding a way to accumulate financial assets a little at a time can lead to a different way of thinking about money.

Now it's time to talk about the professional part of your life. If your dream is finding a way to make your living without a particular job that you perform for someone else, you will be glad that you have saved that five dollars a paycheck. This is a tough one in this economy. Most people are happy to have a job at all. This doesn't mean that you should keep it if it is not what you want to be doing. Maybe you will take baby steps, but if you are employed in a situation that does not fulfill you, now is a good time to work with a coach to redefine your talents. On a scale of 100%, where do you stand on this one? If you are the least bit dissatisfied, start designing a new plan! Sit down and redefine your applicable qualities. You can design a new resume to attract your ideal profession. Take a class, start part time as a helper, work as an intern, but start making it happen.

If your relationships are not 100%, you will need to start asking questions. Can you change these relationships? What will you have to say or do? Are you prepared to end a relationship if the other person or people are not willing to openly work on the areas that are not working for you? What would it be like if you were able to improve these relationships? Can you picture it?

And the last area of your life that you should take a look at is wellness. Of course there are things that you do like eat a donut on the way home from the grocery store that you wish that you didn't do. Maybe you need to chill out a little. If you refer to your spirituality, maybe getting outside more, meditation, yoga, something else relaxing... Maybe you can get a massage once or twice a month. What can you do to improve your wellness? Be specific, and be willing to set goals and make changes.

Once you have gone through this list of life's components, you will have a clear picture of how you feel about yourself, and your balance in life, or lack of. What an exciting time this will be for you. By making small changes and improvements on the areas of your life that you perceive as out of balance, one by one, they will all begin to tie together.

By writing a positive vision statement, and reading it to yourself each day, you might be surprised at how quickly your life will begin to improve. You need to set goals, and believe that they are attainable. Picture the photograph of yourself at the finish line. You will be happy, successful, healthy, and financially stable. Why not start today?

Monday, April 26, 2010

Conversations With Your Soul

Don’t believe that your soul speaks to you? Your soul is the intuition that has the power to lead you to the deep inner knowledge about your personal fears and desires. When you look in the mirror and ask; “Does my butt look big in these jeans?,” of course, you already know the answer. That voice that says; “Ya think?” is your soul.

You generally go down the line to the next poor sucker for validation. It’s torture for your significant other to have to lie when your intuition, inner voice, soul has already honestly answered your question. If you didn’t suspect that your butt looks big, you wouldn’t have asked!

Your soul is a wise force. It knows all of the answers. All that you have to do is ask. When you have a dream, but don’t know how or where to begin, you need to start asking. What would it look like if I accomplished that goal? How would it feel? What do I need to do to get there?

This is how you can begin to build solutions and results. Your soul, or intuition already owns the information residing in your inner universe. It is at your command. All you have to do is ask.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Do Better, But Don't Do Yourself In!

God knows I try. I try not to drink too much coffee. I ate chocolate for Easter. I try to exercise and meditate, or at least take a moment to calm myself every day. It is quite difficult in this world to maintain a healthy, balanced life. Being both a hippie and a cowgirl, I have found myself caught up in the two cultures, as I suppose most people are. I mean, sometimes I'm a Massage Therapist that plays calming music while I work, and sometimes I'm a steak eating cowgirl whooping it up over a shot of whiskey.

A holistic life is one that considers the balance of you, your mind, your spirit, and how you treat the earth and its creatures. We have to consider all of the plastic floating in our oceans. If you can recycle, please do so. Eating less meat is good for your body and the earth. If you can do so, you should. Obesity, high blood pressure and diabetes can all be a result of a poor diet. If you can grow and eat lots of vegetables, you should.

More than 50% of all people who begin a fitness regimen, fail. This is because we make a cold turkey pact with ourselves, then we crave a hamburger. Once we have "failed," the entire plan goes out the window. The plan should be that you will do the best that you can today. If you have that fourth cup of coffee today, try again tomorrow.

Bummer. No chocolate for me today. I deserve a massage.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Friday, April 2, 2010

Wayyyyyy To Analytical For My Own Good

I’ve been accused of being far too analytical. I think that all people think things out like I do. If I had been Jesse James, I would have thought that public transgressions might become obvious, then I would get caught and lose everything. I wonder why he would shame his lovely, successful, and famous wife like he did. There was really no rational reason for his behavior.

If I were an elected politician voting on such a huge topic as health care reform, I would take the document to the citizens of my own jurisdiction, decipher the facts, then see what they have to say. That’s what government officials are elected to do. They are elected to speak on behalf of their voters. Instead, they have all made buffoons out of themselves, driven by personal vendetta, and I doubt that anybody in Congress will even be re-elected in November.

I’ve got to stop analyzing and over thinking things. While I’m busy wondering why people do things, the world is changing by the minute. These are the best times to keep up and be educated. Technology is changing, and energy creation and uses are developing rapidly. When jobs open up, people need to have their new and reinvented life plan together. There I go … over- thinking again.

I’ve made up my mind. When the economy opens up, I’m going to be in the garden. Through it all, I’ve re-invented my frugal, hippie self. No more worrying, no more over-thinking. Just free, fresh food on the table every night. Let the buffoons be lying cheaters that fight it out. Peace-out. I’m eating organic.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Can't We All Just Get Along?

Can’t we all just get along? Now, there are threats of violence against government officials homes and offices! Health care reform is so necessary in this country. I never thought that it would be such a fiery issue. Although I’ve read sections of the bill on the internet, I don’t know the specifics of the excitement on either side! Political argument is always a heated matter. People need to take a rest. We all need to go back to spending money on necessities, and even vacations for Pete’s sake! We’ve been locked up in a bottle for the past year. We need jobs, cash flow, new home sales!

If I were king … er … queen, I would give every child in the country a horse. A horse to ride, then have a cool drink of water with, followed by a nice, calm brushing. If children had access to such peaceful relationships, the world might be a calmer place to exist.

Oy vey, we need jobs, better banks, health care, better schools, and more and more. Life keeps on happening each day. Even the Pope is in trouble! We will get to a better place. Believe it or not, we ARE getting to a better place. I have to believe that. Until we find that peaceful place in the sun, I’m going to close my eyes and ride and brush my horse. Just like I were 7 years old again.

At last, a moment of peace.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Time To Plant

At last. The winters get so long any more. It's almost time to start planting flowers and even vegetables! Even though our house is for sale, I'm going to move forward with everything. If someone buys the house with the garden already in, lucky for them. I wouldn't want to miss a spring planting just for the sake of playing in the dirt.

Colorado is a funny place. It feels like spring is popping up, but, not to sound cynical, it could snow six feet before it's all said and done. For today, I'm going to wear a short sleeved T-Shirt and appreciate the day!

Monday, March 1, 2010

Staging

Our house is listed with a new realtor now. $25,000 less than before, and staged to the max. What is staged? Well, I didn't know much about it. I've now learned that you should walk in to a bedroom at the foot of the bed. Who knew?

I've also been schooled on the fact that carpet that is smashed down from furniture legs can be brought back up by rubbing it with ice. Sure enough. If you rub over smashed carpet with a chunk of ice, then scratch over it a little, it will look like the furniture has never been there at all.

The Realtor is sending the photographer over this afternoon for some indoor photos. I have a feeling that it's going to happen soon! What next? Well, that is still TBA.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Snowing, Snowing, Snowing ...

In Colorado it snows at this time of year. If you are reading this blog from California or Florida, you might not even be able to imagine what it's like to have to take a shovel and DIG your car out, then heat it up while scraping ice off of the windows before you can go anywhere. Are there advantages? Mmmm. If you are a kid that dreams of being an Olympic Snowboarder someday, maybe. For me, having enjoyed my younger years in the snow, no. NO advantages.

We met with a Realtor yesterday. She says that our area is a popular place for out-of-staters to move to. We have a nice, large, 4 bedroom, 3 bath home with a huge bonus room for the kids. Bring it on! If you are from another state and just can't wait to dig your car out in the morning, I encourage you to come to Colorado and buy my house.
There's even a big sled hill in the back yard.

I really enjoy it when the garden is in full bloom ... In July.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Illuminating My Purpose

I set a goal to write more this year, so I joined ezine, a place to submit articles of expertise. I've got mountains of articles that I've written over the past several years, so I've been editing them and submitting them, one by one. I think that I'm literate, although I've never been able to put a toy together at Christmas by reading the directions.

The problem with these submissions is the instructions. Today I got one of the articles back labeled "too many non-owned reference links," or something like that. I fired off an email that said "what does that mean?" Then, I got pages of instructions about non-owned links. Oh, I got it ... At the end of writing about certain types of therapy, I gave books and reference links where the reader could do more research, if they found an interest in the topic.

When I write and publish things myself, I get to keep all of the money and there are no rules. Somebody tell me why I insist on joining these groups that have such strict rules about what to write and how to write it and they don't even pay!

As my Mother would remind me, I must need my head examined!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Get An Editor

Good writing is good editing. There's no doubt about it. When I'm writing an angry letter, my first draft is just plain silly. And another thing! ... I keep adding junk that doesn't belong, and you should see how many exclamation points there are.

Yesterday, I wrote a two page letter. I kept making my point in so many places that it got old and lost its power. In this case, less is definitely more. It seems as though if you want someone to think that you have cause to sue them that you should leave them wondering. Don't you get more nervous when you're wondering what someone else is thinking rather than have them whine about it while beating the subject to death?

I finished the two page letter today. It's one page now. Pow! Wham! Fewer words, no exclamation points. Take that! Don't you wonder what it was about, and who it was to? Get an editor. That's all I have to say.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Being Well

Al and I are always talking about people's perspectives on issues. It's shocking any two people can have such different interpretations about specific events. For example, when Al was laid off from a plumbing company due to lack of work, he was hired by a new company immediately. As usual, he's steady as she goes. He works diligently, with honesty and integrity. At the holidays, his boss claimed that he couldn't afford a bonus because his customers hadn't been paying him like they should. Of course, Als response was that it was okay, since he feels fortunate to have a job at all. That was when things changed for him. The "mutual" respect turned into him being treated like he's lucky to have a job at all. How did that happen? Did he set that up? Although the boss said that when he got paid, and when things improved, he would get a "New Years" bonus. Now, February 1, there is no bonus, not likely to be one since "he's lucky to have a job at all."

Last night, while watching the John Wooden special on PBS, he demonstrated his pyramid for living. Of course, John Wooden is the most successful and most respected basketball coach of all time. He delivered an explanation of each wrung of his pyramid including respect, hard work, teamwork, integrity, fairness, and more. Players from the past were interviewed, and they had not only gone on to be winners in life, but had raised successful children, and they all had such a high respect for their now 92 year old coach. What a story. I was choked up during the entire show.

The moral that I came away with was simple. To give respect and support to your fellow man is as important in life to all of us as good nutrition. If you give your best, work hard, and have integrity, you will be satisfied with who you are. That satisfaction is the highest reward.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Taking Care of ME

Age is catching up with me. Recently, I looked in the mirror and saw all of the sun damage that my Mother promised. No kidding. YEARS of laying in the California sun at the beach with nothing but Baby or Olive oil on my skin. I heard that the local Dermatology Center had a special on Facial Rejuvination, also known as a fotofacial. Guaranteed to remove freckles, scars, and "hyper-pigmentation" spots ... also known as "AGE" spots. Ouch! Okay, "why not," I asked myself.

I was a single Mom in Aspen. I saw a lot of women spending a fortune on facials, nails, hair color, massage, clothes, etc. I just plain didn't have the money for all of those luxuries. Or so I thought. New underwear and socks are NOT a luxury. Nor is a shampoo or conditioner that costs more than 99 cents. When you have to buy school pictures and field trip money, anything more than Suave Shampoo for 99 cents IS a luxury.

When the esthetitian started working on my face, her first question was about what type of moisturizer that I use. Moisturizer? Well, that's a luxury, for sure. She recommended that I use mineral makeup, for $55.00 a pop. She went on and on about these luxuries as though they were a part of every day life. I get it. These things ARE a part of every day life. They're not luxuries at all. Today, I conditioned my hair with a hot oil treatment. Tomorrow, I'll shop for an organic moisturizer. Maybe I'll even order some new underwear and socks. These things are essentials that cost a few bucks. I'm going to start taking better care of myself. Today, I look great. I feel great. I haven't really spent much money. These things are essential, like groceries, and gas. A new beginning for me. And, a new priority. ME. I feel great!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

God bless the people of Haiti

My power went out today. I'll admit that I was inconvenienced. It was right in mid-morning when coffee, curling iron, heat, and television are all participants in the morning ritual. Boom. Just like that. No power. Although I believe that I make a very conscious effort to "conserve," when the power came back on and I saw my Tivo'd version of the Today show's Haiti earthquake coverage, I was humbled to my knees. Schooled on just how much that I have that I don't need.

Yeah, we had a pretty tough 2009. We had a bout of unemployment, along with the uneasiness of wondering about this economy, but we didn't lose our home, OR go without food and water. I was complaining to a friend the other day how I'm sick and tired of being optimistic. Okay, Okay. I take it all back. I am blessed. SOOOOO blessed.

I'm proud to see so many people already mobilizing efforts in schools and churches all over my neighborhood. The job is huge, but the world is coming together with efforts for every phase of this disaster. The Red Cross needs money and volunteers. http://www.redcross.org/ You can sign up to volunteer or donate on their website.

The power is back on now, and I realize just how lucky I am! And grateful too.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Well, I Never!

I thought that I was on a Punk or Candid Camera show because this certainly wasn't happening to me FOR REAL ... or, was it?

Time to change the oil on my mini-van. Actually, a couple of thousand miles over, but with this economy, I've got ink cartridges to buy, groceries, high cobra payments, etc., so the oil change had to wait until long after Christmas.

I packed my books and laptop for the long sit in the waiting room at the lube place, and found a chair for waiting where I could see out into the shop. I like to know how the car is doing in the long line.

First, a man and his daughter came in and sat next to me. I think that I knew them from Aspen, so I said "hello." Next, comes a middle aged woman. I might have guessed that she would be the antagonist in the story. Her costume showed a plump body, huge sunglasses (still worn indoors), and a basket type purse with artificial fruit on the top. She kept asking the counter person "how much longer?"

By the time I and the Aspen people sitting next to me realized that this woman was high maintenance and self centered, it happened. She took her nail clippers out of her Carmen Miranda handbag and started snipping her nails!  When the first snip landed on my jeans, I flicked it off with my index finger. Then, the second snip flew into the keyboard of my laptop. Are you kidding me? If I would have had a can of air, I would have blown her fingernail out of my keyboard and back in her direction.

I have a sense of humor, and since I thought that I knew the Aspen people, I was sure that somebody had set this up and I was on camera. The plan was that I would go ballistic and that the video of the woman with the mini van who went gonzo in a lube shop in Grand Junction, Colorado would go viral! I'd be on the evening news like "balloon boy."

The truth is, it wasn't a setup. No sooner had she put her snips back into her fruit studded handbag did she get up and again started asking "how much longer?"

The sad truth is that there are hoggish, high maintenance, rude, ignorant people in our midst flinging their DNA around the room, and it's a crime to challenge them like we'd like to, or I would have physically assaulted this woman on the spot.

Please donate. One day I'm going to need bail.

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