Thursday, December 27, 2018

Monday, December 17, 2018

Happy Holidays

Happy Holidays, everybody. May you have a positive, productive, and healthy New Year!

See you by the pool, May, 2019.

Kathy D. 

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Happy Halloween, Happy Fall, My last Winter in Colorado is upon us!

It's really cold this morning at 38 degrees! We're counting down 122 more working days until Al retires and we adjourn to our condo in Nevada.

I had planned on leaving the snowy weather when my son turned 18, and he's now 43! You know, jobs, homes, lives, delays, full retirement age, etc.

We'll be spending the winter downsizing our 5 bedroom, 2 garage home to a 2 bedroom condo with no garage. The closer it gets, the less I care about moving the "stuff" one more time. The Goodwill is full of my life's collection of things that I don't need and frankly, never needed. Don't worry, Ebay has provided a place for people who actually care about some of the crazy stuff that I've collected to donate to our retirement fund.

It's funny how bitter sweet retirement feels. I watched my grandparents, then my parents retire and it's mind blowing that we're finally old enough. Al and I both feel like we have worked as honestly and hard as should be expected, so we're ready. With the NEED for a paycheck behind us, we look forward to living like teenagers before we left home. Few bills, one car, and no rent sounds like such a great way to chill, at last. Today, I'm thinking about palm trees and the pool ... ✌

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Unaffiliated Independent Voters

Republicans And Democrats  are fighting like cats and dogs. With upcoming mid term elections, one would think that instead of bickering and making absolute fools of themselves, they would take note that Unaffiliated, Independent Voters are multiplying like bunnies! Not all Independent Voters are Socialists, guys. Boo! Take note.

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Have A Cup Of Tea!

The first bowl moistens my lips and throat;
The second bowl banishes all loneliness;
The third bowl clears my mind of words and books;
At the fourth cup, I begin to perspire ---
life's troubles evaporate through my pores.

The fifth cup cleanses my entire being.
Six cups and I am in the realm of the divine;
Seven cups --- ah, but I can drink no more;
I can only feel the gentle breezes blowing
through my sleeves,
wafting me away to the Isle of immortality!

---Lu Tong, Eighth - Century Chinese poet, from
In Gratitude For A Gift Of Fresh Tea

Monday, September 17, 2018

Let Us Be Kind by W. Lomax Childress

Let us be kind.
The way is long and lonely,
And human hearts are asking for this blessing only

That we be kind.
We cannot know the grief that men may borrow,
We cannot see the souls storm-swept by sorrow,
But love can shine upon the way to-day, to-morrow—
Let us be kind.
Let us be kind;
This is a wealth that has no measure,
This is of Heaven and earth the highest treasure—
Let us be kind.
A tender word, a smile of love in meeting,
A song of hope and victory to those retreating,
A glimpse of God and brotherhood while life is fleeting—
Let us be kind.
Let us be kind;
Around the world the tears of time are falling,
And for the loved and lost these human hearts are calling—
Let us be kind.
To age and youth let gracious words be spoken;
Upon the wheel of pain so many lives are broken,
We live in vain who give no tender token—
Let us be kind.
Let us be kind;
The sunset tints will soon be in the west,
Too late the flowers are laid then on the quiet breast—
Let us be kind.
And when the angel guides have sought and found us,
Their hands shall link the broken ties of earth that bound us,
And Heaven and home shall brighten all around us—
Let us be kind.

Wednesday, September 5, 2018

Understanding The Medicinal Qualities Of Water - Hydrotherapy 101

We reach for medicine when we have a headache, but there are many non medicinal treatment options available simply by understanding the combinations of temperature, and length and form of application of water. For example; When my Italian Grandfather would get a throbbing headache, my very old-fashioned Grandmother used to make an herbal foot soak for him. As a child I was confused by this.

The basic thing that you need to understand about hydrotherapy is that hot creates what’s called vasodilation. This essentially means dilation of the veins. When the veins dilate, more blood is allowed to travel through. In contrast to dilating the veins, is vasoconstriction. When cold is applied to an area, it constricts the flow of blood, so in an area of injury where tissue is damaged, bringing ice to the area immediately can prevent swelling and bruising by restricting blood flow through constricted veins.

Understanding the injury process can be helpful, but just knowing the basics can bring healing to you and your family in a handful of cases. So, why did my Grandma use a hot foot bath for a headache? To open the veins in the lower extremities drawing the excess blood from the head that’s causing the throbbing. Are you thinking that she also used a cold pack on his head? Good call, the answer is yes.   That’s Hydrotherapy 101. Temperatures are important, but beyond Hydro 101 are the indications for ice or heat, along with the contraindications for each. In any case, I don’t recommend using ice or heat for longer than 20 minutes at a time. Keep in mind that you’re manipulating the body’s natural flows in order to accomplish something in a single part of the body. Once you’ve drawn or restricted a bunch of blood to a body part, you need to give the rest of the body a chance to remain normal. Also, the body has natural defense systems that aren’t in favor of your unnatural manipulations, so they need to be tricked in short spurts.

So, when do you use ice or heat on an injury? Checkout this article on the Naturopathic Doctor News And Review.

 An instructor in Chinese Medicine once told me “To keep it easy, if it’s hot, use ice, if it’s not, use heat.” Although not quite that simple, it works. Examples would be, a fresh black eye that hasn’t swelled yet, an ice pack would stop the body’s natural responses from further injury that accompanies swelling. In the very beginning, I would use 15-20 minutes of ice every couple of hours. I would use ice until the threat of swelling and inflammation are gone. By adding heat too soon, or by using heat on an injury that is becoming infected, you threaten flushing undesirable cells into the blood stream. Here are some examples;

Tight Muscles: Tight, contracted muscles are not an injury. They are muscles that need oxygen. By using a heat pack for 15-20 minutes, the blood will begin to flow through the contracted area letting go of the stuck tissue. This is why a nice Jacuzzi after a workout is so relaxing.

A Hot, Swollen Joint: Joints have plenty of tendinous muscle attachments (no blood in tendons) that get aggravated causing the related bones to become inflamed, and that brings excess fluid that causes swelling and pain. By using ice, the excess fluid isn’t allowed in, lessening the pain. By adding heat too soon, you encourage the debris filled fluid through the entire system. By allowing the area to heal a little naturally, the injured cells will move out on their own time.

Alternating: So, what are people talking about when they suggest alternating ice and heat? This is called Alternate or Fluxion. This is the act of greatly increasing the circulation to an area, then stopping it with a short spurt of cold alternately, followed by heat again. This brings a flush of blood that washes out accumulated toxins created by an injury. Going black to the black eye that we treated with ice … Once the bruising starts to turn yellow, it’s ready for Fluxion to remove the debris caused by the injury. 

When using alternating hot and cold applications to the same body area, there should be at least three alternating applications. The cold duration should be about one fourth to one half as long as the hot applications. Start with hot, always finish with cold.

Need to detox? Take a nice hot shower for 10 minutes. Switch it to cold for 3 minutes, switch it back to nice and hot, finish with a splash of cold. Be sure to drink lots of fresh, clean water for the rest of the day. Simple! Free! Do it with a pool and Jacuzzi, or maybe your gym has a cold plunge to use with the shower. Consult with your doctor before jumping into a cold plunge if you have hypertension.

Thursday, August 23, 2018

People Seem To Think That Yoga And Meditation Are For Religious People

Well, yes. That’s partially true. Some people who practice meditation do it for the silence that will allow for you to become closer to the spirit (whomever you think that is). Some people pray or chant prayer type mantras, etc.

The truth is that you can be a selfish louse and still become a meditator. For many years, being a person who wants to learn the proper techniques in any practice, I’ve studied many techniques used by different groups, and found that personally I was nothing like, nor did I believe in their specific doctrines. Zen meditation became the most comfortable for me because all that it requires is that you follow your own breath.

Once proficient, people were asking me if I was a Buddhist. Actually, I had studied yoga extensively, so I was aware of a variety of ancient writings and teachings that believe in love and non violence. The problem is that I was looking for a hero, when, in fact, a perfect hero isn’t out there for me.

Raised Catholic, I left the church many years ago because of the scandals that frankly, I couldn’t forgive. When I delved into the history of Siddhartha or Buddha, I discovered that he had left his wife and child to go off on his own to become enlightened. His wife was devastated. She eventually became a Buddhist nun, but their marriage was no longer. Some think that this was a non event, but sort of changed my feelings about that doctrine.

I continued to meditate by sitting quietly and not trying to find a specific reason or purpose, just sitting quietly. I learned to practice Qi Gong which is a Chinese practice that requires focus and is a form of moving meditation. I do it because it allows for me to stretch and breathe so that I will be more centered and flexible, nothing more.

All in all, what I have discovered is that yoga and meditation may have originally been based on ancient practices and doctrines, but today all people can improve their health by taking some time to chill, lower their blood pressure, and have a clear mind for whatever self improvement can be manifested.

To believe that meditating or practicing yoga will threaten your belief in God or change your spirituality in any way is preposterous. While researching for this writing I found a Christian based blog based on this type of propaganda and I feel the need to pass it on.

The blog belonged to someone who is the pastor or church leader.  The blog had some other indications (like the name of it), so that’s how I concluded this. There was a query from a parishioner who claimed the need to relax and stretch, but was afraid that by performing certain yoga postures, she may be performing something diabolical, or even betray her relationship with God. The response from the pastor was that yoga was originally designed to worship Hindu deities and that yoga is a fad complete with a clothing line, floor mats, DVD’s, Books, jewelry, and all kinds of other paraphernalia that will one day be balled up in the back of a drawer somewhere.

Oh, she must mean 5,000 years from now, as yoga is known to be around for more than that long.

Yoga postures are indeed designed to create strength. There are as many flavors of yoga as there are religions. Probably more than half of yoga class participants don’t know a darn thing about the Upanishads (historic Sanskrit writings). They go to class for the relaxation, fitness, and the company of people seeking the same. Yes, some people have studied the practices to a great degree and live their lives accordingly. So, what of it? If you go to a Dodger game most people are nothing like you but they like the way a baseball game feels. What of it?

As a fitness professional for over 40 years one thing that I can assure everyone looking for a stretching or relaxation program is that placing your body in a posture that feels good or makes you stronger will not lead you to the devil. This is such propaganda that I can’t believe it!

Your mind and body are your own. If someone in your yoga class says “ohm” you are welcome to say a prayer in whatever language or belief is yours. If you’re not comfortable even going to a class, call a trainer. If you contact a personal trainer and let them know what you need and what your fears are, I promise you that they will design a program that works just for you. One session. I promise.

Thursday, August 9, 2018

Try This! This Is A Simple 10 Minute Qi Gong Meditation For Relaxation And Vitality

Although a very simple movement meditation, this qi gong practice is a powerful way to energize and relax. Try it, enjoy it. The only way to de-stress and relax is to try.

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Changing The Vibe

Some of the most powerful things that affect our feelings for the day are not the traffic or the people that push our buttons, but the visuals and sounds around us. Yes, the traffic and the  A - holes are what push our buttons, but a color or a sound can change the level of tension FAST.

Vibration, whether riding in a car, or flying on a plane tends to put babies to sleep. That's because vibration touches every cell in the body.

An article found on explains how sound therapy is used for stress because it not only soothes our physical body, but our emotional body as well Sound can be used to unlock blocked emotions.

The Deepak Chopra Center in California has found that the sound of Himalayan Singing Bowls and Gongs are a beneficial part of their cancer treatments. They claim that the sound of the bowls are chemically metabolized in the body as the endogenous opiod which works in pain reduction.

Some known benefits of sound therapy are:
  • Balancing both hemispheres of the brain
  • Increases vital energy flow
  • Cleanses negative energy
  • Stress reduction
I'm only mentioning a few benefits, but along with these few are the additional benefits of better sleep, relaxation, better digestion, lower blood pressure and all of the things that come with stress reduction.

Lately, we've been experimenting with our own stress by hanging a tiny chime in the kitchen. When something stressful happens and one of us is uptight, we hit the little bell with the intention of changing the vibe. It works!

American Music Therapy Association

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

I support

The Coast Off Of China
As much as there are people using and dumping plastics into the ocean, there are activists working to clean it up. 

The photos, like the one to the left, are sickening. Advocates and scientists believe that they will be able to clean up the five major trash rafts floating in the ocean if their newly invented cranes work as researched.

We have no choice but to act in any way that we can to help with this cause. I believe that as humans we have a responsibility to keep our own environment healthy for ourselves and our families.

I support  Please help in any way that you can to better our world, our environment, and animals and humans. 

Thursday, June 28, 2018

Keeping A Positive Outlook On Life

Another day and we're getting ready to start seeing flowers on my little seedlings. Watching my
flowers growing each day reminds me of the brighter side of life. Look at them! It's only been a few weeks. You still have time to plant some seeds to make the environment a better place. Turn the TV off. Mean people suck, but plants and animals will always be true!

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

What The Heck Is A Jade Roller?

It’s a Jade – Roller, of course. It is a lovely item with a smooth piece of Jade on each end
Jade Roller
traditionally is used in beauty treatments in parts of Asia.

I’ve been practicing and teaching face lift massage this summer and hand positioning and depth of stroking is always something to pay attention to.  A therapists hands can get crampy and tired when trying to work in the small areas while keeping the rest of your hand out of the way. If not working in small areas
 with your fingers, how else, you ask.

This is where the Jade Roller comes in. This type of treatment is called “crystal-infused” skin care which in addition to smoothly pushing blood through tissue, is also known to use the restorative properties of various stones. Rose quartz is another stone used in face rolling.

This type of facial treatment has been used by Chinese women for eons but has just recently garnered attention in the USA as an “Innovation in skin care.”

In January of this year Town and Country Magazine shared a how-to diagram with upward and outward motions to move excess fluid from the face. Harper’s Bazaar recently reported a brightening of the skin as a result of the roller boosting circulation and blood flow to the face.

I love the results that I see in my own skin. I can sit in my easy chair in the evening and while watching my favorite show  I can roll my face while looking fresher by the minute. I give a huge thumbs up to this product! You can buy one on Amazon or Ebay.

What IS next?

 It seems like the Covid 19 Vaccinations are going faster than expected, but states are opening up equally as fast. I want to get out again!...