How do you keep your mind positive to deal with life’s realities?

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Life continues in a routine then something happens…the other shoe you anticipate in the back of your mind. You never know what and you strive not to be a pessimist.  Whom wants to be in expectation of gloom?.

Can we be in expectation of good?  How can we be recipients of good?

Imagine if you did not plant your garden because you believe a hurricane might come this year and wipe out your hard work. Denying ourselves the joy of gardening is a crime isn’t it.  I believe Jehovah told Adam to tend the garden.

Not only would you miss out on the joy of planning your garden, the joy of working it, and the joy of the harvest Through out the season.  Pessimism is the weed like effect in your garden of life.

We must root out the pessimism in our life.  There may be reasons we base our pessimism as if it were fact.

Disappointments, hardships, and life’s realities could cause us to feel we are protecting our heart and mind by not having false hopes.

When we have belief systems in place because of prior experience or propoganda. This is an infringement that does not leave us open.  For instance:  I was born blond and have always been blond.  However, I noticed those with deeper darker hair colors had others respect or confidence almost immediately.  I dyed my hair a deep brown.  Not only did I feel more confident, I noticed I was treated differently by the same people.  Suddenly, competent!  I am at my own hair color and happy about it.  Yet, I learned a lot about people’s preconcieved notions.

Another attitude is about overweight people. Having experienced the stress of my own obesity after prolonged medical problems and medications, I understand all overweight people are not that way because of excessive food or lack of exercise.  Some people are heavy because of medical problems and medications.  Some people are heavy because of overeating and a lack of exercize.  Do we really lose all our good qualities just because of a few extra pounds?.

If we believe “I will never be loved.”  We are telling ourselves a lie.  Maybe those whom were responsible to love an protect us have emotional damage themselves and they were not capable of love and approval.  We could not be more loveable if the person does not know how to love.  I felt unwanted and not loved as a child.  It does not mean I was not loved.  I have enjoyed loving and being loved.  Jehovah has taught me how.

“I am unorganized” is another belief.  Maybe you are unorganized!  I am also unorganized.  Good News!  We can be more organized by practicing principles of time management and of personal habits.  I am working this month to have an industrious morning routine.  The fact is, I am cluttered, unorganized, and still completely optimistic of all I ever intend to do.

We watched the movie “Pollyanna”, Haley Mills, what a love, you feel she must be a fun lovable person in real life.  I liked when she an orphan of a minister, was talking to the preacher, played by Karl Mauldin. She quoted from Abraham Lincoln, “if you always look for the bad in others, you will find it!”

I thought about this bad habit, if our habit is to look at ourself or a family member always seeing the bad, we will never see the good.

People are so bias, people like whom they like and will always recognize the good in them.  And when a person does not like you, they will always see everything you say and do in a negative light.  People are blind.

According to Jehovah all of us rank the same,  we are all equally flawed with sin.  If we want Jehovah to see the good in us, we need to see it in others.  If our dislike for another blinds us, we need to ask Jehovah to open our eyes and help us to recognize what he sees in them, so we can be free to love them too.  This includes, seeing ourselves more clearly.  If we view only the good we are blind, if we view only the bad we are blind and crippled.

It is frustrating, sometimes, we want to change all at once, it is quite a hopeless helpless state.  I have to beg Jehovah to help me see more accurately at times.

The end of this article is here, in conclusion, each day we are privileged to live, realistic expectations of ourselves and others makes for a joyful existence.  It is time to plant the seeds entrusted to us as we hope for a most beautiful bounty.

This article is Dedicated to all my Dear friends whom continue to encourage me.  And all whom read the articles, may your life be blessed with Joy and Optimism.

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.

 

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.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Happiness, is a practice. We will call it the Happy Habit.

Happiness is something you can have despite all you have been through.  There are many examples of happiness in human history.  People whom survived war, concentration camps, abuse, personal hardship, that have still achieved happiness in their life.

Life’s problems can steal so much from us.  Some problems are temporary even though they feel long lasting.  There are long lasting problems that can drain us.  A few happiness habits can fortify us and give us inner strength and peace of mind.  Striving to do just a few of these can improve your outlook.

We must first identify what has us unhappy or miserable.  Are there circumstances that seem out of our control?  Did we bring any of these troubles on ourselves?  Are we a victum?  Is it just because we live in a world that is suffering too? The July magazines on http://www.jw.org  helps with anxieties and getting control of our lives where possible.

What I would like to address is injustices happen all too frequently.  My mother in law, Marcia, whom just turned 98, her parents were immagrants, and her father was killed by a hit and run driver when she was 16.  She was raised during the great depression, and then later being newly married her husband went off to WW11.  Typically during those times she found she was pregnant and he was overseas.  She had to be brave and strong on the home front, working and bearing her three sons.  Later she suffered the loss of her middle son in a vehicle accident.  And her youngest son was seriously maimed in the vietnam war.  Yet, she has practiced some happiness habits all these years.  I have learned so much from her.

Happiness Habits:

Upon waking in the morning I pray to Jehovah to give me wisdom and discernment.  We are confronted with so many situations and choices each day.  If we respond to situations with wisdom than we may have less frustrations and consequences to deal with.  If we are discerning, it means we might not react too quickly before truly considering a situation and the possible outcomes.  Of course I am not talking about being indecisive.  Just, diminishing impulsiveness.  Life is hard enough without adding to our troubles.  This approach helps with anger management too.  Jehovah promises anyone whom asks for wisdom and discernment he will freely give it to them.  How generous, the happy god wants us to be happy too.

Take a moment, let’s say you have a break at work, instead of burying your nose in your phone or ipad, sit outside and observe nature, or take a brief walk during your lunch or break.  My mother in law, Marcia, whom is 98 today has one habit that she has always done, she takes a walk each day, she sits outside and observes nature.  She has a clear, active mind, and she still takes her daily walk with her dog Mikey.  She has a routine, and she looks at her watch and she knows what she should be doing when.  Marcia still does her own laundry, and paperwork, she reads the newspaper and is interested in people, places, and events.  When I call and say let’s go and do this tomorrow, she says, no, I have laundry to do tomorrow.  The next day I can do it.  I am always impressed with her simple reasoning on things I tend to overcomplicate.  Being impulsive, I am learning to slow down and work things around my own schedule and routine.

When you are handicapped, it is vital to still strive to practice a routine.  It gives your life sanity and peace.  When you cannot do all you have planned, it makes a difference.  You did what you could and accomplishment is satisfying.

Having a routine is vital for happiness.  Include good things in your routine, if I decide to fuel my car on Friday, take it to the car wash, and vaccume it out, then it is ready for the next weeks activity.  My husband actually does this for me, and I have come to appreciate it.  I like to go to the Barnes and Noble and browse books and magazines.  It is a real treat.  Plan something nice to do after you clean out the car.  Go have a coffee and snack, enjoy it at the establishment.  Keep the car clean.  Your work mates see in your car, your family sees in your car, and you see in your car.  I met a man once whom kept his car so immaculant that it looked like it was still on the sales lot.  I told him,” I am so impressed with how beautifully clean your car looks”.  I had just pulled up next to this car at the gas station and had to comment.  People notice for the good or not so good.

Your esteem is fragile, so invest in your esteem with healthy habits.  Have a date with yourself to read the book Of Psalms or Proverbs.  Read a few minutes a day if you like.  Just keep your goals reasonable.  Do not say “I will read an hour a day.”  Each day is different.  Just prayerfully consider and read a chapter, and if you like, do another.  It doesn’t matter how much you read, but how much you meditate on what you read, reflecting on how beneficial the application of the material can be.

I love these adult coloring books.  It makes a great present for anyone you want to encourage.  You can use colored pencils or fine point markers.  The designs are really interesting.  If you just want to wind down, you can color for a few minutes.  I do not put it on myself to finish in a sitting.  I may say, “I will color a couple of the flowers today.” and you get to choose the colors.  Your choice, your in control.  You do not have to be perfect, it is not up for inspection by others.  It is for your own pleasure.  I purchased one for my friend Sandy whom has MS when I was at Barnes and Noble the other day, and I purchased one for myself.  I have not done much yet, but I have done some.  It is wonderful.

My friend Olivia, told me you can download pages and print them out to color.

Express love, appreciation, and approval often for those you share a home with, and those you work with. Exercise consideration, complain less, and Thank more.  Help loved ones with the chores in the house.

Let your employer know what you appreciate about them and all they do to manage your department.  It is a hard task to be an employer.  Ask if there is anything you can do to lighten their load.  Is there something they can delegate to you.  Be a help. Everyone wants a raise, do our employers know we appreciate them?  An acquaintance whom got a bonus told me that a couple days later the boss sent everyone a text message because no one thanked him and he expressed hurt and annoyance.  The boss is a person too.

Call and check in on your family members.  Make time to meet a family member for a coffee.  Have a rule that no phones are to be messed with, just talk and listen.  Ask what they have been doing lately, what are they currently interested in, and what future goals are they working toward.  How many do not even know how their mates or teenagers would answer this.

Marcia loved learning, she took decorating classes, and attended community events.  She did not mind doing things on her own, she just went and enjoyed herself.  Marcia has traveled the world.  She enjoyed great music.  I enjoy listening to her and all the adventures she was involved in.

Do not have large expectations of others.  Expectations of others can lead to great disappointment.  One person I know is really generous, but their expectations of others response to their generosity cause them to feel hurt and disappointment.  Give freely, and the best time to give is when it is not expected.  People do not express themselves the way we would want them to, but it does not mean they don’t feel appreciation.  The action of giving is a joy.

We went to Maine to see my family and friends last May, a about 25 years ago I lived there and attended a congregation there.  So when visiting, a friend I did not recognize came up to me and told me I had taught her how to sew.  She was wearing a skirt she had sewn recently and was very proud of it.  That made me feel so good she was making use of a skill I have taught her and so many over the decades.   Someone took a lot of time to teach me fine sewing skills.   Jesus said, you receive free, you give free.  Share your craft with others, all will be blessed.  I wish Betty whom taught me was still alive so I could tell her how much it meant to me her teaching me how to sew so well.  I am sure I did not tell her thank you then like I would now.  I know I said thank you, but now I have so much more I would tell her.  Her son contacted me a few years ago and said I was her all time favorite student and he sent this expensive nice machine of hers with all the specialty feet and attachments.  That was so kind, and it made me feel really good.

During the civil war, and WW1 and WW11, women did their needlepoint.  Their mens lives were at stake, and their life as they knew it was on the line.  Practicing daily habits helped them preserve a sense of control, even the habit of sitting down at a particular time for their tea.  There was a time to practice their music, and there was a time to call on each other, and there was a time to sit and do some needlepoint.  When they did their embroidery or knitting or sewing they had something beautiful to focus on, and there was a sense of accomplishment, and they could look forward to the finished product.  Visiting a yarn shop you can discover some classes or group projects.  Yesterday I went to the yarn shop for some special instruction in some knitting tequniques I had trouble doing.  Having dyslexia, I am slow to learn and apt to get things backwards.  It was one little thing I was getting backwards and she figured it out and took the time with me. While I am recuperating from my hernia surgery I can practice what I learned.  Give it a try, learn something new.  Earn a little esteem.

At night, pray to Jehovah and thank him for the good in your life.  If you are depressed and cannot recognize the good in your life, ask Jehovah to help you see the good in your life.  Ask him to help you be joyful.  If you have problems that you cannot cope with, tell him, and ask him to help you find a way to address your situation for a better outcome.

These are some happiness habits that Marcia and I practice.  Despite life’s challenges, joy can be achieved.

How can I be Fat an Fabulous?

How can you be fat an fabulous?  Yes, you guessed it. I like oxymorons.   A couple years ago I went without make up a couple years an didn’t comb my hair for days. Ashamed of being overweight, dealing with chronic illness, I felt insignificant,  I felt I had nothing to be proud of. One day I was having lunch with my friend an although we weigh about the same I noticed she really is fabulous. Her hair is always done nice, she dressed lovely an has fantastic posture.  Olivia leads a fabulous life, she is a good friend  to many, she loves clothes, she knits, sews, crochet, gardens an enjoys the ministry. Being fabulous is living fabulous each day. Side note. Olivia has lost some weight an she has been keeping a regular exercise routine for a few months. She is inspiring an she is fabulous.  She no longer qualifies as a fat person.