Working on Yourself Helps Others

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This time of year can be very depressing for many people.  I tend to bounce between anxiety to happiness, sometimes in a matter of minutes.  So, it’s really important to focus on what you need, and how you treat others, especially if your own emotions are flying all over the place.  Slow down, take a breath and find the calmness in yourself.  When you do this, you can interact in a much more positive way with others.  Then, tackle all the additional things that need to be done.

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Zero Waste Lifestyle

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My daughter recently asked me if I knew anything about “zero waste living”.  I had to admit that I’d heard of it, but really didn’t know what it entailed.  So, I decided to look into it and relay my findings to all of you.

Zero waste is living without any waste at all.  So, this means that you don’t buy your toothpaste, you make it.  When you get coffee out you bring a mug with you and have that filled instead of a coffee cup.  You need to think about bamboo toothbrushes instead of plastic ones, buying loose vegetables instead of ones in plastic bags.  Another great thing that is easy to do is to by your own steel straw and keep it with you just in case you end up going out for a drink, that way you can limit the amount of plastic straws you use.  By the way, you can also do this by bringing your own silverware with you if you end up in a fast-food restaurant.

The list of things that you have to think about is fairly long, and from what information I’ve found, it can take a while to get to zero waste.  There is a steep hill of learning to climb, to say the least.  A lot of it seems to be pretty time-consuming, and as an aside, the loophole of using “recyclable” plastic, can be more than confusing, since as I’ve come to know, much of what we “recycle”, doesn’t actually get recycled.  (The cost of recycling is going up all the time, and many of the countries that took recycling are not taking it anymore.)

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So, in my case, I could not go to zero waste, since many of the products at my local grocery store are packaged in non-recyclable plastic, from bread to vegetables, and many products in between. I don’t have the option of buying those items loose, since I’ve never even seen loose mushrooms, they are always packaged in the stores that I’ve been in.

That being said, there are a lot of other things that we can do to bring our waste down.  I almost always bring a bag with me when I shop, so I don’t have plastic bags.  If I do end up with them, I reuse them for as long as I can.  If I’ve forgotten a bag, I will often just put whatever is was that I’ve bought into my purse if it fits.  I also have quite a few net bags that I put my loose produce in – fruit and the vegetables that are sold loose.

While trying to live by creating zero waste is an admirable goal, I’ve found that the way we package food products, along with most of the other things that we buy, it seems to be a difficult task.  However, I absolutely advocate doing what you can in your daily life to create as little waste as you can.  After all, we have turned much of this world into a garbage dump, and What do you think about going zero waste?  I’ve left a few links below for you to check out if you’re interested.

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https://www.motherearthliving.com/healthy-home/zero-waste-living-zmfz15jfhou

http://time.com/5218046/how-to-live-zero-waste/

 

Dreams are Soul’s Wishes

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What an interesting quote.  Do you think this is true?  What are your dreams – you know, those “crazy” ideas you have for living the life you desire – fulfilling your deepest wishes.  Do you feel that they are much too hard to attain, or have you slowly but surely been working on them all along?  I remember reading the story of a man who had always wanted to obtain a higher education, so he decided upon retirement that he was going to go to college, but couldn’t afford it.  His solution was to go anyway and audit the classes (this simply meant that he could do the work, but not receive any credit).  His friends gave him a hard time, telling him that he’d be too old when he finished, but his response was that he’d be that age anyway, so what difference would it make.  Some ten years later, he was still auditing various courses, doing the course work and passing every class.  The college finally gave him an honorary degree for his dedication to learning.  Needless to say, he was the same age he would have been anyway, only now he’d gotten the education he’d always wanted.  Life is to be lived, after all.

See, if someone really is courageous enough to follow through on their soul’s wishes, they are often able to find a way to fulfill them.  The problem, I have found, is finding the courage to follow through.  Turn your dreams into actions and fulfill your wishes!

 

December Goals

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I should be honest and say that my main goal for this month is to live through it.  This is the most stressful time of year for me.  After many years of seemingly (actually) disappointing some members of my family no matter what I bought, I find that the holiday can be excruciating.  As the month goes on, my stress levels rise, and I get more and more anxious regarding the gifts that I’ve bought.   I over-think everything and cause myself much more stress than is healthy.  Needless to say, I’m going to try to nip this whole thing in the bud this year, and refuse to over-think it.  After all, the people whom I’m referring to are adults, and their behavior is immature, to say the least.

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I’m still working on finding affordable health care, and since the exchanges close on the 15th, this is my first priority.  I would really appreciate being able to go for an eye exam this year – I just know that I need a new prescription.  Also, after going for a year hoping that nothing terrible happened health-wise, I’d really like to at least know that I’ve got “good” insurance this year (“good” insurance is a relative term, don’t you think)?

Another goal is to decide what did and did not work for me over the last year, and figure out some plans on how to better achieve my goals for the coming year.  Also, further organization has to be done, so there will be more “stuff” taken to the swap-shop at the dump.

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What are your goals for the month?  Let me know in the comments below and we can cheer each other on!

 

 

 

November Reflections

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I don’t know about you, but November was not a fully productive month for me.  I re-injured my back, making my workouts more of a workout than I anticipated.  I attempted to do NaNoWriMo (national write a novel in a month).  I was aiming for finishing my dog book, which I did not accomplish.  However, I’ve gotten a start that I’m happy with, and intend to work on it more in the coming months.

I did sort and file most of my paperwork that’s been hanging around playing cards and drinking beer on my dining room table and credenza.  This only happened because I needed to use my dining room table for Thanksgiving – talk about a really good reason to do some organizing.  So, that was a good thing to finish.  And, to point out my state of disorganization, I thought that I had another week before Thanksgiving, so imagine my surprise when I realized I only had a few days to pull my dinner together!  That fact right there is another indication of how my month went.

One happy note is that I’ve started my Christmas shopping and can actually see the light at the end of the tunnel.  Hopefully there will not be any extreme panicking this year.  So, how did you do with your November goals?  Let me know in the comments below.

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Christmas is Coming!

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Thanksgiving is over and done.  The dishes have been washed and put away.  Those five pounds you’ve put on (I hope not!) will probably add up to a grand total of ten before the holidays are over.  And now, what’s going on?  Just the biggest sales event of the year…Christmas!  It seems that the only thing Christmas is for is extreme consumerism.

I don’t have cable, so I don’t really see all the commercials that most other people do.  I’m not inundated with “buy, buy, buy!” constantly.  I don’t even listen to the radio since I tend to listen to books when I’m cooking and cleaning, and I listen to CD’s while driving.  But even so, I’m also receiving all the advertisements in the mail and inserted in the paper on a daily basis.

You would think that Christmas was all about greed!  Seriously, that’s not what the whole idea behind Christmas is about.  Before you spend your money on “things” this year, consider what it is that truly makes life special.  Spend time with your loved ones.  Create new traditions that involve doing things together.  That’s what they’ll remember long after the new toys are lying broken on the floor.

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Happy Things!

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It’s been quite a while since I’ve written about my own exciting life.  To tell the truth, my life hasn’t been very exciting at all.  The past summer was much too uncomfortable to go on many hikes, and the most exciting thing about it was the fact that it was a perfect excuse to read more books!

We did get a lot of wood processed, took a few more trees down, and hopefully will have some wood left-over after this winter.  I’ve been plugging away at my writing for my 360 Days of Haiku…I am looking forward to the end of this year, and do not intend to do this again anytime soon.  I had no idea what I was getting myself into when I came up with this insane idea.  However, it will be over soon…so I’m sure I’ll come up with another crazy idea for next year.

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I’ve also been taking lots of pictures because not only did I write one haiku per day, I also took a picture for each one.  So, I’ve been getting as creative as I could.

I went to see lots of movies.  I love movies, and could watch at least one a day if I let myself.  Some I’ve seen include: Atomic Blond, The Spy Who Dumped Me, Peppermint, Bohemian Rhapsody, Avengers Infinity War, Black Panther and many more.  As a matter of fact, I’ve gone to more movies this year than I have in the last few years put together.   Along with all this happiness, I went to see Postmodern Jukebox last week and was thrilled!  What talent!  If you haven’t checked them out on YouTube, I suggest that you do so.

There have been many walks with my dog, Duffy this year.  Since he is getting a little “older” – he’s now 8 ½ years now, he gets special hip and joint medicine and the vet has him on some anti-inflammation for when we do longer walks.  He still thinks he’s a puppy, so he can do some damage to himself if I’m not careful…he’s all about the stick/ball/Frisbee.

I hope you’ve been putting some happiness in your lives.  Share some of what you’ve done recently that has made you happy in the comments below.

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