Monday, June 29, 2020

Success Through Failure + #MyPostMonday Linky -The Week's Best Original Content

Wow, what a week, month, and year this has been. With no sign of it really ending anytime soon! The thing that I've seen, though, is that people are so resiliant, so ready to try, so anxious to be their best selves, so determined to be happy, come what may.

And I just marvel! Some examples that have moved me in recent days:

1) The mom who was told in her teens that because of a severe case of PCOS, she would likely never have children. She beat the odds with fertility treatment once, twice, and then, when she thought her chances of ever conceiving again were gone, due to the sudden cancellation of her infertility treatments because of Covid-19, in her moment of darkest despair, there it was---the two lines of the pregnancy test. In disbelief they took the test 4 times with different brands of pregnancy tests. Of course, the journey isn't done, she had to endure a painful surgery just to keep the baby in her womb in a hospital all alone. But she has courage, she is pulling through and has profound hope that she will be the mom of a miracle baby in a few months!

2) A young mom of 5 beautiful kids, wife of the high school football coach, successful social media personality, and owner of a successful dance studio, gets the devastating news that she has AML Leukemia. Cancer. Serious. Lethal . Robber of joy. As she shares with everyone her ups and downs in a hospital room where noone is allowed because of Covedf-19 restrictions, she bravely keeps going with her live online sharing sessions, where she not only inspires us, but tells us how incredibly blessed she is. She then starts dancing in her room and does a hospital patient fashion show. It's the craziest thing. It's like she is trying to make us feel better when she is the one enduring all that suffering. She is still on her cancer journey and you bet, I'm right there with her, rooting for her and hoping that she'll recover. Some days are complete failures for h er--her blood count numbers go down, her symptoms intensify, and her husband and children can't be there with her. On top of that, she recently lost her mother, who was her biggest fan, and support system. She swears that she feels her mom there, being her guardian angel, orchestrating the care she can't be there to give. She gives an example: Before she knew she had cancer, through her dance studio she was able to help a little girl named Indy Lew, who was diagnosed with....AML Leukemia, the same cancer she now has. Indy Lew's mom has come to the hospital several times to help her, care for her, and give her encouragement because now Indy Lew is now healed, in remission and doing great!

Thursday, June 18, 2020

Find Sleep Relief With Sleep Cube! Review and Discount Code!

The struggle is real……to get a good night’s sleep, that is! For years, I was the one who could always count on getting enough sleep. I could sleep 12 hours a day if allowed. I wasn’t very empathetic to others who weren’t as fortunate with their sleeping patterns. Sure, there were the few sleepless  instances when I was fraught with worry over something, if I was looking forward to an activity that was going to be really fun, or if I had to do something the next day that was really stressful.  But those seemed to be few and far in between.

However, it finally caught up. This past year has been terrible for sleep. It has been such a struggle to fall asleep, stay asleep, and get up rested and ready to go through the day. As I lay in bed, tossing and turning at 2am, my mind and body are not in agreement as to what I am supposed to be doing! My mind wants sleep and my body says no! I came to the realization that this is what people were talking about about when they spoke of insomnia. It's definitely NOT a fun gig.

I believe in the occasional sleep aid, but I don’t want to get dependent on anything whatsoever, but once in awhile I would allow myself to take something a little stronger than Tylenol PM.When I did give myself that allowance, I found that I would pay for it later. I'd get a headache, or I'd be extra groggy and lethargic.

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What I did do, was to start collecting pillows. There were firm pillows, soft pillows, memory foam pillows, ridged pillows, small pillows and large pillows. They are all double cased and they all rest on my bed, but no more than 7 at a time. ('cause that would be hoarding after that!) The idea is that if I could arrange all the pillows around me in the perfect way, I would be so well supported and so comfortable that once I fell asleep, I would stay asleep and not wake up until morning. It worked (Once in a blue moon)! In the meantime, I could always use the pillows when I was awake and reading in bed. They certainly make good tablet props, elbow props, upright head position props, and so on.

Friday, June 12, 2020

Palazzo Pants -- A Summer Must-Have

It's the weekend and summer is here! I love loose-fitting, airy, comfortable clothing. Usually my style will be ultra casual, but sometimes we want to dress things up a little. Palazzo pants are the perfect way to do that! Palazzo pants certainly fit the criteria of being loose and airy, if you get the right material. The pants I am wearing here are definitely loose and airy! I love the navy blue and white print! It looks so crisp and clean with a white tee or a navy blue jacket.
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I'm going to go from more dressed up this time down to the ultra casual style that I'm known to be kicking around in most of the time. First we have the pants paired with a navy blue jacket that I acquired quite awhile back as part of an outfit. I knew I wanted to keep the jacket because it's so lightweight and easy to care for. The top that went with it and the pants are long gone. But here we have these palazzos to bring that jacket back into the rotation! I also had a quilted bag that I don't use too often at all, but the bag brings out the navy blue of the jacket and the lighter blues of the pants. So the contrasting print seems to work out, what do you think?

Believe it or not, this past week has been rather chilly, the temperature dipped down into the 40's overnight and didn't get above the 50's. So the long-sleeved sport shirt purchased at Costco this past winter was great to wear with the pants. It was actually a casual look, but when paired with heeled sandals, it passed for something you could wear shopping or out running errands.

Finally, my most loved and comfy look--the basic white tee worn along with the palazzos and some flip flops! As you can see the pants have some extra length on me when not wearing a bit of a heel, which I personally don't mind if I'm going casual, at least not enough to hem them. I'm just under 5"5 and they could easily accommodate the length of someone 5"8 or even 5"9. I don't think someone with that height could wear a heel, but easily a great sandal or sneaker would work! I'm usually a medium size and I ordered the medium here (10 - 12). 

The pants are from Cents of Style. They have other prints available as well. I like the elasticized waist and the easy fit. It is made from 100% rayon, a silk alternative so you need to be careful when washing. Wash it on the gentle cycle on cool and never dry it in a hot dryer. To avoid wrinkles, fluff dry it for a few minutes and remove promptly. Follow me on Instagram to see more fashion posts under the hashtag #agalneedsfashion

Monday, June 8, 2020

A New Narrative + #MyPostMonday Linky

Some people never change, and then some do! It's funny how some people I haven't seen in many years will reappear and somehow they are different than when I knew them back in the day.

For instance, one of my high school friends whom I knew quite well was so boy crazy! Everything she did was done to impress and snag a boy! I used to think, "Girl, get a grip. There is more to life than just boys!" Needless to say she met someone right out of high school, her prince charming, and got married. Unfortunately, it ended in divorce.

To know her now is to see her minus the boy crazy, self-absorbed personality she once had. Now, she is all about her children, her grandchildren and about making a better world around her. She is absolutely wonderful to be around. My thoughts about her are that she has really changed and has caught hold of the important things in life. I know she will again find love because she is a beautiful person. But it isn't the all-consuming passion of her life that it once was. She has broadened her scope.

Have I changed too? How have my experiences changed and shaped me? Do former acquaintances see a gentler, more compassionate person or do they see the same impulsive, crazy, moody person I once was?

Monday, June 1, 2020

What Queen Victoria Taught Us About Ourselves + #MyPostMonday Linky

One of my favorite T.V. shows is 'Victoria', shown in seasons, all about the life of Queen Victoria. I'm sure the show has been romanticized but all the same, it is highly historical and I have learned so much about the nuances of British aristocracy, the war, the Spanish flu, and the British government, to name a few things. Combined with the show, 'Downton Abbey', and the movie 'Pride And Prejudice', my love of all things historical British aristocracy runs deep!

The actress who plays Victoria, Jenna Coleman, seems to portray Victoria quite well physically, as she was in her younger years, very petite and with large blue eyes. But even more, she shows the vulnerability yet fierce determination of a teenage girl who has been put into the daunting position of being Queen of the most powerful nation in the world at the time.

Of course, Victoria had some training in the ways of royalty before being placed on the throne and had been groomed for awhile to be in that position. But even so, the patriarchy of the Parliament was overwhelming. She had to show all of those men that she could meet them head-on and contribute in a confident and intelligent manner.

At first the going was a bit rough, but as she observed with a keen eye, she picked up even more as time passed. Of course she had some great allies in Lord Melbourne, the Prime Minister and her husband, Prince Albert. They helped her navigate through those first few years. But she always held her place as the Queen and fiercely reserved her right to have the last say after weighing all options. In my opinion, she did an incredible job!

Monday, May 11, 2020

10 Ways To Tempt Fate Other Than Covid-19 + #MyPostMonday Linky

Do you know how many ways there are to put yourself in harm's way? I was floored by just a few of these U.S. statistics!

Being Murdered: 1 in 11,000

Being Robbed:  1 in 400

Being Burglarized: 1 in 50

Women dying in childbirth:  1 in 12,500

Death from earthquake or volcano: 1 in 11 million

Death From Leaking Gas: 1 in 12 million

Injury in an elevator:  1 in 6 million

Death from ingesting detergent: 1 in 23 million

Infection from flesh-eating bacteria:  1 in 170,000

Being hit by a meteor: 1 in 150 trillion

 Of course, these are just a few ways that someone can really mess with their mortality in a big way. The statistics make death by any one way fairly rare. But combine all the ways to off yourself, and the chance of dying is probably close to 1 in 100 at any given time. Yet up until recently, people were OK with taking chances. It seems so interesting that for the past 2 months, people have severely curtailed their risk-taking activities. Yet, it hasn't prevented deaths from happening from things other than Covid-19. People are still getting killed doing crazy things. Car accidents still happen, drownings still happen, plane crashes, and murders still happen!

I guess what that tells me is that no matter how careful you are, no matter how much the government tells you to stop risky behavior, the fact is some people are going to die. What else does that say to me? I need to live life the best way I know how, in the safest way I know how, but above and beyond that, I can't prevent my own demise. I will die when I die.

My goal, then, is to make sure that I'm not afraid of death, that I'm prepared to die and that I've made peace with those I need to make peace with. Do I want to go quietly or do I want to go out with people actually missing me? I think the latter. How do I do that? I'll take a cue from this quote: "How carefully most (wo)men creep into nameless graves, while now and again one or two forget themselves into immortality." --Phillips Brooks

If we (note: we=I) could just forget for 2 seconds about how we look or how we feel or how we are perceived by others in favor of just going out and making someone else's day a little bit brighter, I think we'd find that our problems seem a little less significant all of a sudden!

So maybe along with the prioritizing, financial goal setting, social posturing, dream boards and self-affirmations, we set aside some time to wonder how best we can serve another! Then when we do die, whatever way that may be, we'll have really lived to the fullest!

Today is "My Post Monday!", a curation of my picks of the week's best original content. It's all about posts from Crafts to Camping, Wellness to Wealth, Fashion to Food, and whatever else is on the brain!  I  open up with a post of my own and then follow it up with a linky of the week's top original blog posts! It's all about what the writer thinks, believes, and knows--in other words, they are active, writing blogs. If I happen to find a great original, non-sponsored post, I'll link it up and share it with you here and on Twitter via the #MyPostMonday hashtag!  I can miss some amazing posts, but I don't want to!  So, in addition, if you'd like to link up yourself, you can do that too!  I'll visit your site, comment, promote and publicize(Affiliate links welcome)

Saturday, May 9, 2020

Scenic Saturday With Images Along The Way

It has been so gorgeous here in Utah. Spring is gorgeous here, but if you blink, you'll miss it. That's why I'm going to get a few images to show here and there. I do a fair amount of hiking and biking during the warmer weather. That's one thing that hasn't changed for me during this social distancing time. I've really tried to stop what I'm doing and take some photos if I see something I like! So please, enjoy!

Tuesday, May 5, 2020

3 Resources That Everyone Has + #MyPostMonday Linky

As I was browsing around the internet last week, I happened upon an idea that resonated with me. Something that held promise to help me with a problem I have. 

The problem is this: I find that when the warm weather comes, I start getting really motivated. After the long, dark winter, I have a bijillion things on my To-Do List, all vying for the top spot. And I WANT to do all of them. I make a valiant attempt to accomplish everything. But alas, my day doesn't leave me room for it all. It has always been a rather discouraging prospect. I feel like a hamster in the perpetually turning hamster wheel. And then, I hit bottom. The feeling of failure is so intense. 

But I'm the type of person that doesn't like complicated plans and life changes in order to achieve a goal. My life is complicated enough without adding more. But the following idea made me stop and think.

The idea is that everyone has 3 resources at the beginning of each day. No matter who we are, we are given an allotment of time, a certain amount of energy, and an opportunity to focus that time and energy. Everyone has a different amount of each resource. Someone may have much more time than energy, another may have more focus and less time. Someone else has focus to spare, but less time and energy. But no matter which way those three resources are divided, there is a way to get exactly what you want, if you want it badly enough. 

One of the nice things about staying home was that I was able to focus on what my priorities outside of work are. When I'm working, a good portion of my daily time, energy and focus are dedicated to my job. When I get home, I have a limited amount of those resources left. It's up to me how I utilize the remainder of them. 

An exercise to do is to figure out how much time I have left after work. Next, I need to realistically assess how much energy I have left for the rest of the day. This is where it gets interesting. Some days I have more energy and some days I have less, depending upon what happened at work, how much sleep I got the night before, etc. But the real key is deciding where my focus should be. I really need to prioritize my priorities so that I can match them to my time and energy. It may mean that I'll have to cut out a couple of things each day in order to have energy for the things that are deserving of my top focus. When I have a  clear-cut and realistic vision of my time, energy and focus, then I can really move forward! I think that Mr. Noel DeJesus really has a great idea here, and I'd like to learn more about it!  
 Today is "My Post Monday!", a curation of my picks of the week's best original content. It's all about posts from Crafts to Camping, Wellness to Wealth, Fashion to Food, and whatever else is on the brain!  I  open up with a post of my own and then follow it up with a linky of the week's top original blog posts! It's all about what the writer thinks, believes, and knows--in other words, they are active, writing blogs. If I happen to find a great original, non-sponsored post, I'll link it up and share it with you here and on Twitter via the #MyPostMonday hashtag!  I can miss some amazing posts, but I don't want to!  So, in addition, if you'd like to link up yourself, you can do that too!  I'll visit your site, comment, promote and publicize(Affiliate links welcome)

Monday, April 27, 2020

How Quarantine Brought An Unexpected Bonus + #MyPostMonday Linky

It's now been about 6 weeks, more or less, since we've adapted a new lifestyle, in our state known as "Stay Safe, Stay Home". It's a lifestyle that many of us don't mind, if we only had the paycheck to go along with it! I've relished the extra amount of pure, uninterrupted time given to me. At first I thought I'd be so incredibly productive, but what I found is that it took some adapting to this new windfall of around 6 hours per day! At first I didn't know what to do with myself!

After some time, I did indeed adapt and something kind of amazing and unexpected came out of it. My husband and I started playing music together! Now, we've both been musical since childhood. But it had kind of been on the back-burner for both of us. I played violin in a university orchestra in college, plus piano, and he had played the guitar, sang and composed since he was a teenager, mentored by his maternal grandparents who used to compose and perform in the Coalinga Horned Toad Derby Days and Daffodil Days both in California.  But our instruments were badly in need of repair and we hadn't played them in years. Life had gotten in the way! Several months before things went to quarantine, we both got new instruments! I got a new violin and he got a new PRS guitar! 

Tuesday, April 21, 2020

The Measure Of Your Creation [Book Review]

"When we want to fill the measure of our creation more than we want the things of this world, the Heavens will open." I believe this statement to be true! I've seen it work in my own life and in the lives of many men and women that I admire. They go about doing what seems like they were born to do. They don't have ulterior motives. They simply do it for the joy of it.  They are happy to do things for free. They are happy to mentor others. Because when they help others, they are moved along the upward path to success as well. Call it karma, the law of the Universe, or in my case, the laws of an eternal God, it really does work!

This is just one of the truths shared by a remarkable woman with a rather common name!