Friends make life more tolerable and bring joy.

Friendships definately stimulate joy in our lives.  How do we make friends in the cyber world?  How about an old fashioned face to face contact, conversations and good times.

Loniliness is an actual problem for many. Life’s responsibilities keep most so busy they only have time to carry out their domestic duties and get rest when the next day presents the same.

Of course some are very shy and do not know how to get the conversation ball rolling and keep it rolling and for how long.

With good things there are always limits, boundaries, and rules of respect.

Imagine if one friend works and has children she is definately going to have less time then an older semi-retired person with no children.  So if you want to visit with her, invite them all over and have a meal ready with no requirements of her.  Understand children have bedtimes, homework, and she may still have washing to do for the week.  Do not be hurt that she must leave so soon?  You did help and your friendship means a lot.

I love spending time with my friends.  My friend Susan made lovely cards and has organized an old fashioned tea party on Sunday afternoon.  Exciting.

My friend Danielle and her daughter are learning how to sew from me and are progressing quite well. We love spending time together while being productive.  We are all learning new things.

Valerie is teaching me how to Garden, she is amazing.  I kinda get out of the way, she moves fast and confidently as I hang around wanting to help and I am not useful.  She has taught me so much and the garden is lovely. We have good times together talking and laughing.  Her household goes to bed early so although we could hang out til they kick us out or make another bed, we strive to be considerate and leave not too later than their usual bedtime.  😂

I do not like to ask people how they are because it is an unfair question.  The rule of thumb is to smile and say good or fine while you may be dying inside.

I like to ask what a person has coming up next week, or did they recently do anything enjoyable.   Last evening I asked Danielle if she had anything fun coming up?  She said she and her husband, son and daughter were going to an dinasaur exhibit.  I think that is so exciting.  I look forward to our conversation after they have experienced this.

We must be more interesting than the internet.  Instead of watching movies, playing games on phone, internet cruising, and such.  Learn to live your life!  Be the heroine of your own story instead of passively letting it pass you by.  Imagine how many hours are wasted on the internet or television.  Add them up if you dare.  Time runs out of the day, week, months and years. Yes, our life can passively pass us by.

By doing activities, we become interesting.  For instance, I finally lost a couple pounds, only a couple.  It was enough to wear my floral linen dress   I wore it and was happy for a little bit, until I realized the side splits came up half my thigh.  As soon as I got home I got my box of grommets out and while talking to my almost 26 year old son, Brock is my middle son which always has it’s advantages, and my husband.  The unusual course of things is they think I do not know how to do things   They cannot resist taking over and have great fun doing it.  So he took everything from me and now he was setting the grommets into my dress side slits where I had marked   When he was nearing finish He said, “as usual mom, you start things you do not know how to do, good thing I came around”, and he has one eyebrow up for emphasis.  It took everything to keep from laughing hysterically.   I then said to John, my husband, “how come you did not say it was your turn to set some grommets like when I made my striped bag you too fought over your turns like little children?!”.  He just looked at me as I giggled about the both of them.   If I want to set the grommets, I have to take my things and hide under a tree.  Yet, these men, my husband and sons create such entertainment I think This is truly called living.  Being involved in activities together.  Oh,  my dress looks cute with the shoe lace look, I used embroidery threads and put beads on.

I asked my husband what was one thing he noticed and liked about me.  His reply was, “you were always doing something, and no matter what was going on with you or around you, you were always so chipper and happy”.  I thought that was great because that is how I am.

Quit reading about others so much, live a life worth writing about in your own journal.  Write down something positive someone said to you, or a good outcome of something you worried about.  I like to combine my journal with my calendar and master lists for weeks and months so my accomplishments and direction or focus is all together in one place.  I am thru trying to buy journals and calendars.  There are none perfect and they run out of months.  Living my life includes making a personal everlasting journal/calendar/masterlist binder I can add to an take away from all I like.

Set up your challenge and stick to it.  Mine is Daily Bible reading, daily practice of simplified domestic schedule, sewing, gardening and painting regularly.  Oh, do not forget hospitality.  Invite ones to meet for coffee, or to library for a book on a place you want to vacation.  Greece or Peru, I cannot afford to go but I can plan my ideal trip anyway and pray about it.

The point is, Be your own friend first, go to museums, concerts, learn to dance, learn a hobby, fill your time with wholesome activities.  Friends will naturally come in time.  We are not desperate for friends, that makes us vulnerable and stupid.  Be discerning and do not immediately befriend anyone.   Do not drop your life story on anyone the first few times you meet and do not feel the need to pull personal information from them.  It all comes in time.  If someone has undesirable traits that concern you, gently mention it and give them the benefit of doubt.  Yet, we have no right over others.  Their choices are their own to make.  I like to show from the Bible how God, Jehovah and his son, Jesus feel about the matter.  This way it is not my opinion or preference.  People are not perfect and I am far from perfect.  Allow people to be themselves.  Sometimes friends come and go.  Yet, some will stick with you through the years.

Living our life, being God’s friend, our own friend, a friend to our family, and others will freely draw near and it is a delightful journey.

Now, my domestics need attention, then I will stop an sew or paint later this afternoon.  Live! Live! Today.

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ENDORPHIN THERAPY 101.

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Runners and walkers alike enjoy great weather and the endorphine benefits of exercize. Gina the  Author when I was young.

As I practice endorphin therapy for natural anti depression and reasonable relief of pain I am learning the difference between healthful endorphin releases and nonhealthful endorphin release.

There is no pain erradication therapy for me through this therapy or medications.  At this point, I do not know a moment without physical an sometimes emotional pain.  Please note that I am not talking about mental illness, clinical depressions, or emotional imbalances.  I do feel empathy for those whom suffer such.  It is my belief that endorphin therapy practiced with purposeful healthful control can be beneficial for all.

When addictions are considered, the effects of endorphins make change so difficult.  I have no specific knowledge or experience as I am not a physician or psychiatrist.  The experience I personally refer to is that “FEEL GOOD” part of the brain.  Growing up my mother made the best chocolate chip cookies and they were a real happy treat.  When we would take a long walk to the icecream bar in the grocery store we were estatic.  She knew how to get us to look forward to things and the realization of it was deeply felt.  We encountered alot of loss, devastation, and physical pain.  The good things were very good, exceedingly good thus setting me up with my own unhealthful forms of endorphin release learned at a very young age.

As I have been practicing this Endorphin Therapy, I am prayerfully considering all things big and small in my life.

Decades ago people were sent to sanitariums and the routine with patient activities provoked healthy endorphin release.

One important aspect to my investigation as to endorphins is to determine healthy and unhealthy.  Not all endorphin activities are healthful.

Healthy activites lead to longterm good feelings, and are beneficial to longterm emotional and mental health.

Unhealthy activities are short term with glee that later brings feelings of guilt, depression or sadness.  One example, a close relative of mine went out with men and had relations with any and all that seemed interested in her.  Yet, she had to visit a psychiatrist regularily to cope with depression over her conscious accusing her because she considered herself a christian and knew God did not like her activities.  She was addicted to her search for love in this wrong way.  She smoked in order to calm her nerves.  She felt empty and she drank heavily to deal with her emotions.  Her drinking and feelings created rage which caused her to be very violent.  The cycle for good feelings resulted in great sadness and emotional pain for her and all of us.  She died lonely at 61 from a heart attack.

Other negative short termed emotional highs are spending money excessively. People do this alot during the holidays and then panic sets in six weeks later when there is no money for the power bill or rent.  The food banks are busy then.  Post Holiday Blues, what should have been good turns out desperately sad.

Drug, alcohol, or any substance abuse are known to peak endorphines, yet, you lose your moral integrity and esteem.

Malfunctioning and mispurposeful use of the power of free will, can pervert the function and purpose of endorphins.

Responsible use of our power for use of Free Will can bring longlasting joy as endorphin releasing activities are being utilized as intended by our Grand Creator.

25 healthy activities TO ENJOY THE BENEFITS OF ENDORphin release:

  1.  Pray each morning for guidance, and Thank our Creator Jehovah for his son and the good in our life.
  2. Eat a healthy meal to start day.
  3. Hug a family member, hold the embrace, express words of endearment and appreciation.
  4. A massage, give one or get one.
  5. Help someone clean their home or yard.  Helping feels good.
  6. Eat an apple or some nuts
  7. Change the decor of one room.
  8. Plan a detailed meal, set the table nice.  Enjoy preparing with good music playing.  Do this even if just for yourself.
  9. Take a walk alone or with a friend, or take a zumba class, or do aerobics.  Dance, Dance.
  10. Listen to opera music or rock.
  11. Plant a garden or have houseplants to care for.
  12. A pet or a farm either one helps us to care for something besides ourself.
  13. A day trip each month to a museum, zoo, or festival.
  14. Go horseback riding or plan a vacation to a dude ranch.
  15. Go to bed early, do a little reading.
  16. Enjoy a nature walk.
  17. Send cards once a week, make a list each week of upcoming anniversaries, a graduation, or thinking of you cards.  Send cards if you hear of anyone in your area that has suffered a loss. Compassion and personal interest in others without expectation of returned kindness is restorative.
  18. Spending time with family and friends can bring about good feelings.  Plan a picnic.
  19. Coffee, or a couple pieces of dark chocolate or a glass of wine.
  20. Sitting in the sun and enjoying nature.  Watching birds and butterflies.  Or a body of water, waves, boats, or kayaking.
  21. Swimming, bowling, playing pool, a trip to library, basket ball games, playing an instrument or golfing each week so as to have this to look forward to.
  22. Read the Books of Psalm and Proverbs
  23. Buy yourself or someone else flowers.
  24. Cleaning the house or yard and enjoying the experience, feeling pleased with the efforts.
  25. Do the craft or hobbie you always wanted to do.  Make time an space for it.  Feel good when each step is accomplished.

Feel exceedingly good about the small simple delights in life.  Endorphins will no longer be shy to come out.  They will make your day and life more Joyful.

 

When a size Large is too small…

Five Things I can Do to reach my weight loss goal.

Doesn’t life seem that way sometimes?.. Everything is off, nothing seems to work right, and nothing fits.  Efforts seem futile, like today I was putting the onions in the ground to grown when I was done, I looked at my nice small shallow rows with the onions planted, when suddenly J.J. my Sylvester cat decides to jump in, lay there, pull and chew on them.  I urged him to leave the patch and he dug a hole as if that would be the perfect spot to do his evacuation.  I turned the hose on sprinkle mode and he left out of the area quite quickly.

I love the clothes in the Robert Redford line of Sundance.  His catalog features such beautiful clothes and goods, superior quality, and the price to match.  Sadly, I just cannot afford these wonderful items.  I came across one linen blouse, just gorgeous, and a size large.  Last year I wore a medium.  For less than $20.00, I received this lovely blouse.  You can imagine my feeling’s when I discovered it is just a tight fit, is it the companies fault?

Last week, I was attempting to try on a dress when my husband was standing there looking at me.  I said to him, “I am going to try this on…” trying to give him a hint it is a good time for him to move on to other rooms and activities.  He stood there, still, and then he said, “From the looks of it, it might be a tight fit!”.  I told him to just get on the move.  I put the dress on, and I could not button it.  Sadly, the stinker was right.

It is no fault of any clothing company, it is, just what it is, OBESITY.  How did I get here, and why.  When I was young, I was too skinny and I could not gain a pound.  Now, I patrol all I put in my mouth and it is an accruing situation.

At 215 pounds, it seems to be a losing battle, as I steadily gain.  Now, off the antibiotics, I feel I can lose some.  A friend said, “How do you go about losing 90 LBS?”.  My response, “How else, a pound at a time”.  She is sweet and very encouraging about anything I want to do.  She respects my needs for projects and is always interested.  So, losing this 90 lbs is my newest project.

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Filet, Sweet Potatoes, an Asperagus

What is a project without a plan?….How soon can I realistically achieve my goal?  What can I do today that is simple or small that will help me be equipped to reach the goal?

  1. Faith:  Have Faith and conviction that the idea, goal or project is worthy to accomplish. 
  2. Acknowledge:  Acknowledge the Healthy habits and routines that are already practiced as beneficial.  Feel Good about what we already have right!
  3. Implement:  When the most beneficial plan of action is decided upon, get to it.
  4. Tenaciousness:  A friend of mine whom is slender is very tenacious about her diet.  She is sensitive as to how different foods affect her.  She does not let social gatherings affect her feelings about the importance of sticking with her eating plan.  I am a person swayed too easily by my emotions.  I forget my diet if a lovely dessert appears in my mind.  It is time to pull out my “Instead Of:” list. (I previously wrote about the power of Instead Of)  Instead of the banana split, I will work on a painting.  Or take a walk .  Being Tenacious with our goal is protecting our investment of heart, effort, etc.  Aggressively seeing it thru to the finish is what is required to have a successful outcome in the shortest time possible.
  5. Hum:  People whom hum often times do so because of a happy tune or a happy heart.  Feel good about all the baby steps we stick to.  If, we think about how far we have to go, we may give up.  If we feel good about following our small achievements.  We will be successful in achieving our goals.

What goal do you want to achieve?

  1.  We need to write the goal at the top of a nice piece of cardstock.
  2. Break down three categories titled of types of actions needed to accomplish goal.  For example:  Weight loss of 90 lbs.  The four categories for this are 1: Diet, 2: Exercise, 3:  Weekly Positive affirmations,  4:  Attitude check and Progress.
  3. As I look at the first category, I will write down just three things I want to do for my diet, whether it is Lower my carbs to 25 per meal, or have two cups of vegetables each day, or have 350 calories for breakfast as well as lunch, then 450 calories for dinner with just 100 calories for a snack.  Be specific.  Whereas, the Exercise category may be cardio for 35 minutes every other day, with biometrics on the other days.  The Category of  Weekly Positive Affirmations are statements that give a person courage, truthful statements that are considered several times a day, whether a reminder put on cell phone or written on a paper or something included in prayer.  A positive weight loss affirmation for me is:  I do not need to be heavy to be strong, I do not need this fat as a protection.  I am strong and safe anytime.  (with Jehovah’s help).  or another is:  I like caring for myself with the best food possible. Each person knows their own insecurities.  One of mine was, If I was heavy, I would not have to deal with unwanted attention.  Turned out, even while heavy, I still get bothered.  A lot of people have this problem, either they bother others or they are getting bothered.  I am learning to put my hand up in a strong manner when I do not like what is coming my way.  This is difficult for me, but it is becoming my manner.  And the last category is Attitude Check and Progress.  Write down the weight each week, what is my attitude that week gone by, and what good thing I can say to myself to keep motivated.  If I gained three pounds, checking my attitude like:  I have been in the dumps so I ate cookies and skipped my workout all week. Then my new Affirmations will be born out of that.  Example:  After a healthy early dinner and walk, I am going to the bookstore and checking in the bargain section for a craft book.  Or, I am going to arrange to meet a couple of friends to go on a walk with me on some local trails.  Affirmation: I am not waiting for good to happen in my life, I am inviting happy activities into my life each day.

It is time to practice FAITH in our daily life.  We must keep having Faith and Conviction in the beneficial outcome of our project.  We have to Acknowledge the good things we already do right,

in order to have a healthy mind frame.  Implementing our plan of action gives us the power and action through habits and routines. After we come up with our plan of action we must keep it visible in order to implement our new plan.   The Tenacity we exercise because we see how worthy our goal is, we must be Tenacious in sticking to our plan of action.  We can Hum because we know we are right now fulfilling our goal.

 

 

Mother in Law, isn’t always the way you would think.

There seems to be a negative connotation related to The mother-in-law.  Considered overbearing, interfering, and controlling are some popular descripts of mother in-laws.  Yet, what must be considered is that the mother in law, was also a daughter in law.  Should there really be such a domineering division when we both love the same man?

Marcia, my mother in law is the most interesting woman.  She is about to be 99 years old.  Her mind is sharp and she still does her own laundry, checkbook and taking her dog on walks daily.  We are impressed.  Really, she is a very generous and caring person.  I have learned so much from her.

Being born near the end of WWI and being raised by immigrants, her family new to the United States.  Marcia’s father being killed in an accident when she was a teenager around the time of the great depression, she learned to live by her wits.  She married during WWII and her husband right away went off to fight in WW11 and she found she was pregnant and she had the first of three sons.  The industrial revolution started, and her mother lived with her, so she went to work as her mother cared for the young boys.  You had to get into a long line and hope to be picked for the job.  There were some very beautiful women in line, and Marcia was clever but not endowed with the beauty, yet, she had a very nice figure and she dressed professionally, with a sparkle in her dark eyes and a bit of moxie she has led a very exciting life.  Taking trips and traveling to other countries she has treasured up many great memories.    She knit, and she sewed and she made all she desired.  Marcia learned knitting and sewing from her mother whom was from France and was a professional milliner.    She bought a large property with a dilapidated house, and she turned it into a very nice home.  She bought a horse and rode it before work each day.  She worked as a secretary in the Judicial Department.  Marcia has always had dogs, Marcia gave to charities, and supported causes, and she strived to be a good neighbor.  Marcia kept busy going to different fairs and shows, she did not feel she had to go with anyone.  She did what she wanted and she has enjoyed her life.  We have a lot of good times together.  I love to go over my projects with her, I feel she is very keen on creativity and I love her input.  I wished I knew her decades ago, I needed her then as well.  I really have great respect for her.

The mother getting older losing the control and influence on the adult child she raised, and the new wife asserting her independence of a new family.  All are threatened by the potential abuse of familial affections.  The adult child is put in a precarious position between two whom both claim to love them, that are both competing for devotion.  One day when we were going head to head and my husband seemed stressed and caught in the middle I said “Aren’t you a blessed man to be in the company of your two favorite women?!”  It settled all our dissention with a little humor and he expressed if we did not figure out how to get along he would have to leave the two of us at the table.  I have enjoyed more time with her in a great variety of activities, more than the mother whom raised me.  A mother-in-law is a woman, a person, not just as you see her now.  She is a woman with experience, history, accomplishments and sorrows.  She is the person whom raised the man we love.

If you care to, make your mother in-law your friend.  It is a relationship worth tending.  I have learned so much from her.  All a mother wants is to be loved, valued, while spending time with her.  We need to make time for them because it is a sad reality we may not always have them available to us as the years go by.  Call your mum and express some love and appreciation.  I am a mother in-law now, and it can be just as scary to us learning how to interact with the new daughter in-law.  I started out giving too much advice imagining it was valuable, forgetting all the mistakes I made, I created a level of discomfort.  Is she walking on glass too?  Respectfully loving relationships are worth the endeavor.  We all have to try.   You do not quit gardening just because there are weeds to tend.  Time is the intimidating factor, because we  imagine that someone will always be there, and things will be the same.  Things do not stay the same, spend time with your mothers.

February, Is this Leap Year? I am a day late. We have eleven Months to live fabulously.

We are already in the second month of 2016, and we have eleven months to get into the practice of living Fabulously despite.

The sad fact is all endure something.  Employment, family, friendships, health, fitness, financial, are all things that affect our attitude and outlook.  Things occur that we have no control over, tragedies can happen to anyone and do.  Thankfully, some or most of these things can be short in duration in comparison to our whole life.  Yet, this does not cure the present devastation or to minimize overall long-term loss.  I am sad for anyone that is suffering.  May your prayers be answered and that you receive comfort.

The Good News is that there is much we can control.  As you realize, this blog is named fatfitanfab.com.  Sometimes, we cannot control being fat, or other things.  We are in control of more than we realize.  We can be mentally and physically fit as we practice routines and habits that will result in us being fab.

This year, we will consider and practice many things that will add joy to our lives and to those around us.  Check back to fatfitanfab.com often to learn along with me.

I have been working on my goal of walking at least five times a week.  As I have been dealing with a serious infection and inflammation of my left calf and lower leg for a few weeks, I do not feel well.  Yet, although last week I went five days without a walk, I am on track again.  I have gone for a walk the last three days.  At this time, I am only cooking, doing laundry, and picking up after my self.  This infection has to do with the lupus and rheumatoid I endure.  The fevers are grueling and the antibiotics cause me to feel I must stay close to home.   It is a surprise I am not knitting as I am sitting, elevating the legs.  Just do not feel like it when everything hurts.  I loved the movie about Toni Braxton whom also suffers Lupus.  Seeing that really helped me to understand how I am at times, and now I will not feel so ashamed of feeling that way.

Friends have been a source of encouragement.  I appreciate the visitors whom share such uplifting things.  Friends stopped by this morning and it was great visiting with them.

What are you looking forward to?  I am looking forward to my flowers coming up and I am planning my garden.    My friends do sewing challenges with me.  You would think I like to sew.  It is exciting picking the fabric, style, and making it.  I am not adept with most things, and if you remember one of my first articles “Toil, Toil, and it has all gone to Pots”.  I still have all kinds of discouraging mishaps that I call ‘Hold Ups’.

How come I feel Fabulous despite all this going on?  I must tell you the truth, I get down about things I cannot change.  There are times I am overwhelmed and feel I will never get a mastery of My Life Management Skills.  I am happy and I feel fabulous because I am learning the practice of a rewarding life.   Routines and Habits make a difference.   This year I have already lost ten pounds, and 15 since October of 2015.  Now that I am on thyroid medicine it seems a bit easier to lose.  That is something to celebrate.   I finally sewed the buttonholes on my Suit Jacket I made for the convention last month.  A sewing machine my friend loaned me worked.  Yae!  The meals have been delicious.  Do you like to cook?  Think about, Are there new aspects to cooking you would like to incorporate, like making salads a few times a week to go with your meals?  I feel fabulous because as long as we can plan, we live to plan and we plan to live.  While we live, we must plan.  A friend said to me a couple weeks ago, What projects are you working on now? As long as I have known you, you have had projects going on.  She is right.  I likely crossed my eyes at her because I could not help but think of all the projects I did not complete.  I will not think about that, because I have been practicing finishing projects and I have finished so many it just feels Fab.

One goal I have for Feb is Food Conservation.  That will be in my next article.  What goals do you have?  A positive attitude is another goal.  My friend Mattie said to me on Monday to give yourself a little cheer after you complete something, a real feel good event.  So after I washed a load of laundry and put away, I said, Good Job! Well done!  After my walk I did another Cheer.  My friend Mattie is a super influence on me.  Whom says cheering is only for a football game.  Let us cheer each other on and ourselves.

Challenge, Make life more rewarding An get a new ATTITUDE

Take a moment and look in the dictionary, like I looked in the Merriam-Webster, The word, Challenge.  I just never thought of all the definitions for this one word.

Challenge, such as, prove your point. Or, As in a dual, or other forms of defending yourself or a cause, or a decision.

I like the application they made in their dictionary on-line that helps make the point of my article.  I have my article lined up and I love to look up a word occasionally.  To use the dictionary reaffirms what I believe it to mean, or it rounds out the meaning of the word and all the uses and applications, thus making it so I can be completely confident.  Can you make use of the dictionary more often?

The application that the Merriam-Webster on-line dictionary said ” It’s a game that will challenge a child’s imagination.” , and the second was “The work doesn’t challenge him anymore, and he’s often bored.”

In life, there are times that a person goes through the motions of living almost habitually.  Almost with dread approaching the same routine, and stagnation has set in.  Where is the optimism and joy?  Motivation, what is motivation?  As a person commented on my blog, they feel they hesitate too much and too long before attending to something.  I will have to talk about that later, as I am often guilty of the same.  Missed opportunities is all I will say about that at the moment.

Motivation, look it up in the dictionary please!  When life is not stimulating and your caught up in the same old worries and pressures it is time for a challenge.

When we were children, remember when we would do the Library Summer Reading Program?  We had to read so many books during the summer and that was the challenge, not only did it keep us out of our parents hair, it was truly beneficial.  It kept us busy and hopefully out of trouble as our minds were lost in the plot of the story.  We worked at reading our books and we were proud of ourselves as we achieved and fulfilled the challenge.  Challenges can be healthful and enjoyable.

Think of things that you previously enjoyed and let go of because of the responsibilities in life.   Years just continue going by.  Is there something you have been interested in and just have not pursued?  Here is a brief list:  gardening, painting, reading, spiritual interests, exercise, dance, education, golfing, community events, operas, orchestras and live bands.  There is also crocheting, knitting, writing, woodwork, weightloss, personal organization, improving your finances, container gardening, visiting museums, bowling, spring cleaning, better posture, remodeling, cleaning the basement, attic or garage.  There are life changing challenges such as improving your image, updating your appearance, improving your marriage, enjoying your family life.  The list goes on and on, and maybe you can make yourself a list.

Have a wall calendar or a personal calendar just for your challenges and keeping track of yourself.

Steps to successful challenges.

1.  Time period for your challenge must be established.  Will it be a 14 day, 30 day, six week, eight week or a 90 day challenge?  What day or evening each week can you devote to achieving your challenge?  If it is a physical fitness goal, is there three to five days a week you can devote to this new routine?  Once the time period and days are established then what can you do to feel the rewards of working on your new challenge?

2.  Preparation, if you want to get in shape but you have been putting off getting the membership, get signed up.  If you want to paint, then set up a corner or room with all your supplies.  If you need supplies you can contact the local senior citizens center in your area and sometimes supplies are left there by ones that are no longer interested and they may give them to you, and they may let you join them for the classes to get you going with your artwork.  Put things in motion now.  Get out all your supplies, go buy what you need, and set a time aside for when you can work on it.  My friend Diana, she has special needs children she adopted, and on Tuesday, one day she is alone at home, she paints pictures, it is relaxing and satisfying for her.  I am proud of her for doing this, it is a sanity keeper.

If you cannot afford supplies, check craigslist, or post in the wanted section what you are looking for.  Please,’ hoarders’, do not bother, leave it for those truly interested in doing something with now.  Did I step on your toes, I am sorry, I do not want to add to your accumulation.  You can check the wanted section and if someone has a need and you have in your stash what will help them, then generosity is rewarding in itself to  share.

If gardening is your interest, dig up some pots and fill up with new gardeners soil and plant some seeds.  It takes a couple months to get some good size plants to put in your garden.  PBS has some great gardening shows, and the Gardening section at the library has a lot of books on gardening.  Whether it is flowers or vegetables, get them started.  I bought some bulbs a couple months ago at Walmart and I wanted a monochromatic garden.  A four foot by 12′ section of Johnson grass and weeds were an eyesore and we have planted and deweeded there for years.  If you know anything about Johnson grass, it grow deep, it is nearly impossible to get rid of.  My husband tilled deep and we believe we got most of it out.  Several days of raking and hoeing to be sure.  The bulbs come in a variety of heights  from some being 8″ up to others being 42″.  I wanted the rear 2′ x 12′ to be a light pink monochromatic but the front two to be pastels including the same hue of pink with all the other colors.

3.  Purchase a magazine or book of your interest.  Then make your challenge.

One obvious challenge was The Skirt a Day Sewing book by Nicole Smith.  A couple years ago when I was in the hospital for five days having surgery and facing more threatening surgery, my husband kindly went and bought this book for me.  I read it cover to cover and it kept my head out of my depressing and distressing circumstances.  Endorphin Therapy, I love it.  I have yet to do the 28 skirts and I have reread her book a couple times.  A delightful light read, very instructive.  In fact I contacted her on her webpage once and she replied and was so very helpful about a fitting problem I deal with when making skirts and pants.  When I get some of these other projects done, I look forward to doing this challenge.  I am a bit of a slow worker likely I would have to give myself six weeks to do this challenge.  Of course this is an example of a challenge.

The most recent challenge I was involved with was with my Friend Mattie, she is a great sewer and I love to sew.  We picked a pattern she had and being that we had a convention we were going to see each other at in a couple weeks we decided to make the outfit for the convention.  She did an amazing job on hers and she looked very elegant with her lovely brown skirt and Jacket.  I did not have the same pattern so I used a blouse pattern and modified it.  The Jacket had the front angled from the center at the bottom to your left upper chest with the buttons going up at the angle.  Having a lot of fitting issues and having to draft up my pattern, for instance, I have very small narrow shoulders, therefore, I had to take four inches, yes, four inches off the shoulders and make the armhole adjustment.  It was such an exciting project.  My biggest challenge was my sewing machines broke down.  My daughter-in-law Lindsea is so kindly letting me use her machine for a bit, I received it the other night.  Mattie and I attended this large convention we attend three times a year every year and she had on her new outfit with a cute little hat.  I had on my jacket and the color was spice, and the texture not quite tencel or suede.  And although I did not get to make the skirt in time,  the jacket matched a skirt I had very well.  We both received a lot of complements and the challenge was rewarding.  As sewing buddies, we have this two week challenge to just clean up our sewing rooms and finish a couple of projects and get them out of the way.  She gets to decide on our next challenge.  I cannot wait.

The cookbook challenge, take a cookbook you own and scan the chapters or sections.  Pick a section and work it for the month.  Such as one chapter a month.  Or, let this be Sauces Month.  Learn how to make alfredo, and gravies, etc.  Or do a crock pot recipe once a week.

I make notes in my books and magazines when I accomplish the project and I put the date on it too.

A magazine on woodworking, you can do the project.  Make notes, and show time spent on each step.  Make the notes in the magazine and take pictures.

Some want to make Bible reading their challenge or goal, yet it can be daunting.  Keep it inspiring especially if you have not been successful with daily reading in the past.  Would you want to break it down into Bible characters and read the chapters regarding them, Like the book of Ruth, or about Abraham, then do that and really think about what you are reading and how some of their qualities can enrich your life.  Or, Would you want to read the gospels?  I love to read the book of Psalm and the book of Proverbs.  It is not about how many chapters you read each day, it is just that you devote time each day to prayerfully do it.  I love the Imitate Their Faith series and book on jw.org .

Make a list of your interests, masterlist and a timeframe.  A lot of our cellphones have reminders, and to-do lists where we can enter information to help us stay on track with our goals and challenges.  Make use of them.

4.   Have a buddy or an interest group that you are involved with regarding your interest.  It will keep you going and encouraged.

Time is difficult to manage especially with the obligations people face.  Some people come home and fall on the couch and turn on the television or computer for some mindless activites that fein relaxation.  It is ok, but the reward is to trade up the time for more personal achievements.  Now you will no longer be stagnating and you will have something to look forward to.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Another Year Gone By. Happy Prospects Despite:

There is so much is happening in this world, some things are frightening and depressing.  Many are personally touched by tragedy.  Yet, we have a life to live.  As long as we are alive we have a responsibility to be happy.  Some get happiness mixed up with selfishness or me ism.  It is not the same.

If we have a roof over our head, a bed to sleep in, and our basic necessities met, we have a lot to appreciate.  I am not going to depress you with facts and figures about all those whom do not have their basic needs met.  More people than you think have experienced homelessness or other sad situations.  What I would like to suggest is that we can afford to feel a measure of contentment and appreciation.  Contentment and appreciation are Happiness manufactures.  If a person only wants more and they do not see the good in their life with great appreciation, they will never be happy.  When our sons were small and life was so difficult and there was no money to pay the power bill, I still told the boys we were richer than most.  We were.

Another Happiness factor is quit looking elsewhere for what you may already have.  Invest in your mate, children, home, job, and community.  Some are not happy with their mate, what happens then.  Children grow up emotionally detached if we do not regularly communicate with them.  They can become vulnerable because of feeling unloved and lonely.  Everyday, our mates and children need us to Stop!  Look! and Listen!

What would you like to accomplish in the next quarter, 1/2 year point, third quarter?  This first quarter we definitely can start early figuring out our taxes.  An exercise routine is good to get busy with.  This next quarter I want to get some household decorative issues taken care of, finish painting, get some wood work done.

Having a schedule, and quarterly goals keeps me inspired and optimistic.  You cannot be happy if you do not have hope.  There is so much in life we have no power to control.  It is critical that we have short terms goals and long term goals.  Every day consider what step you can take to work toward the accomplishment of your goal.  A short term/longterm goal I have is the practice of productivity in my sewing and painting areas.  I am eager to get more productivity and results regulary.

Productivity restores a sense of well being to the mind.  If a person is layed off, retired, or disabled, productivity is still a necessity.  Some suffer with depression, the loss of employment or an ongoing sad situation can get us down.  Keeping a domestic schedule with some social activities keeps one from isolating themselves.  Productivity causes one to feel accomplished.  Even something as simple as cleaning out one drawer in the kitchen and organizing it gives me pleasure.  Cleaning and organizing a shelf a night in the pantry or the refrigerator creates good feelings.

Assessing responsibilities, and fulfilling them, benefits all.

Considering the application of some of these behaviors, attitudes and habits can cause you, me, and our loved ones to feel happiness.  I desire that as you proceed into this new year that some of your hopes, and goals are fulfilled.                       Gina