Positivity and Photos

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I’ve been feeling in need of a little positivity lately and thought that I’d share a few quotes along with some photos of nature that I’ve taken over the past few weeks.  Enjoy!

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Telling Me What I Can Wear?

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The other day while walking through the Walmart parking lot, I noticed a woman who was wearing a t-shirt that said, “Leggings are not Pants!”.  Since I was taken aback by this slogan, and I was wearing the seemingly outlawed leggings, I simply pivoted as I passed her, so that she could see that I was indeed not only wearing leggings but using them just like pants!  (On a side note, maybe I should have been wearing them as a headscarf? – I’ve always assumed you wore them as pants.  Have I been mistaken all this time?)  – Oh, the horror of it all.  This of course reminded me of the school and airline bans all aimed at leggings and yoga pants.  We also have had legislators who have tried to make not only leggings and yoga pants illegal, but also female nipples – now don’t get too cold, women, you might get arrested!  I have a problem with other people telling me (or anyone) what we can and cannot wear.  The interesting thing about all these bans, is that, of course they have to do with what women and girls are wearing.  This is not about banning clothes that men wear.

From my own observations, it is quite obvious that the problem isn’t so much what women are wearing, as it is the male reaction to those articles of clothing.  Lest you think that it only has to do with what we’re wearing in our day-to-day lives; our clothing is used to shame us as well.  You get catcalled?  Well, look at what you’re wearing – you deserve it!  Raped?  Well look what you were wearing – you were asking for it.  On a personal note, after I was assaulted, beaten and left for dead, one of the responding police officers offered up the observation that my extremely large sweat pants and hoodie were somehow to blame for the assault.  There was no skin to see other than my face and hands, but that was the problem.  My face and hands were somehow “asking for it”.  This shaming and focusing on women and girls is the problem.  Boys and men need to step up and realize that they are sharing the world with females, who have a right to dress as they like.  Just get over it already – after all, we have to deal with your Speedos!

I’ve left some links below.  Look into the situation and let me know what you think.

http://www.thejournal.ie/ban-yoga-pants-leggings-united-states-1935822-Feb2015/

http://www.pennlive.com/midstate/index.ssf/2014/04/more_schools_moving_to_outlaw.html

http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/united-banned-girls-leggings-flight-article-1.3010391

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Choices Do Exist

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With all the insanity and worry that’s been happening lately (school shootings, lost immigrant children, trade wars, White House issues, etc.), life seems to be way too overwhelming, and it’s too easy to become depressed over things that we really don’t have any control over.  As a matter of fact, there are a lot of things that we have no control over – our children/spouse’s actions, work issues, unexpected bills, etc.  So, how can we react when we’re depressed and overwhelmed?

It may sound too simple, but the only thing to do is to concentrate on what you can change.  I literally sign at least 50 petitions per week, and the number seems to keep on growing.  There is only so much that I can do, and petitions and letters to my congress people are just about the best thing I can accomplish.  I have no power (other than my vote/voice), so I try to use it every chance I get.  However, there is so much going on, and I can do so little.  This is just something that I have to realize that my power to make these kinds of changes is minimal, however, I keep doing what I can.

So, depression is a problem for me, and probably for a lot of people.  How do I handle it?  I try to spend time practicing gratitude (and, as I say myself, it is a practice).  And, finally, the last and best thing, is to follow the simple quote: “In a world where you can be anything, be kind.”  These are the words that I try to live by.  I’m not saying that I succeed all the time, but when I go out into the world I try to be as nice and friendly as I can.  One thing I don’t want to do is to make someone else’s life miserable.  So, I’m always trying to be as upbeat and friendly as I can manage.  Sometimes it’s easier than other times, but I’m always trying.  What are some things that you do?  Please share in the comments below.

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June Goals

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Here we are, into a new month already.  It kind of snuck up on me.  Apparently, I thought that the month of May was going to last forever.  Part of my confusion was due to the crazy weather that May brought – one day it just might be hot, but the next had us all wearing winter clothes again and having a fire to stay warm.  The month of May was not productive at all, and with the advent of a new month, I’m hoping to turn that all around.  Here are my goals, humble though they be:

  1. Finish Spring Cleaning – I’ve got the nastiest bits left, and just want it to be over!
  2. Work on my coaching – read some of the books that I’ve bought and get that certificate.
  3. Write more fiction. Work on my novel.
  4. More organizing – files to be gone through and filing to be done.
  5. Continue working out and add Tae Bo to the mix.
  6. Try to have some fun!

Have you made goals for the month?  Share if you’d like some encouragement.  May we all accomplish what we set out to do!

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What Does “Home” Mean to You?

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What does home mean to you?  Is the place that you live your home, or is your “real” home somewhere else?  For many people that may be the place where they grew up.  Other people find everything that the word home stands for in a place in nature – the woods, or the ocean.  For myself I feel that I’ve got two different homes.  The first is in nature – the ocean does it for me.  I could stay there forever, and at the risk of sounding insane, I hate to leave the ocean once I’ve actually gotten myself there.  I’ve always wanted to live as close as I can get to the ocean, but so far, I’ve got to make do with living about one and a half hours away.

My second “home” is my family (specifically, my daughter).  Whenever I’m with her I really do feel like I am home.  I’m sure that it’s the feeling of absolute love and trust that makes me feel this way.

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To talk about my “actual” home, it isn’t really set-up in a way that I would prefer, but it is still home, since this is where I’ve raised my children.  We had “beach” parties in the family room in the middle of winter.  I sat on the floor in the hallway outside my children’s rooms and read them The Lord of the Rings, Narnia, and a host of other books for years.  We home schooled in the dining room, ate dinner together as a family every night in the kitchen, and watched movies in the living room.  It may not be fancy, but it’s still home.

Share your thoughts about “home” in the comments below.

Hermits and Stuff

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I recently read the non-fiction book The Stranger in the Woods – The Extraordinary Story of the Last True Hermit by Michael Finkel.  This is the true story of Christopher Knight, the man who lived alone in the woods of Maine for 27 years.  I don’t know about you, but I often consider the option of running away from civilization and living by myself in the middle of nowhere.  Of course, I’d have to be self-sufficient, including growing my own food, etc., which would require tons of work, and that’s the main reason why I haven’t done anything like that…money being the other compelling reason.

But this account brought up a lot of issues for me.  Do I really consider someone who stole for survival a hermit?  What about his watching t.v. (yes, he stole a t.v., and watched it frequently), he also played hand-held computer games, and listened to a purloined radio.  While living alone and not speaking to anyone for 27 years (with one exception of saying hi to a hiker in the 1990’s) is an accomplishment, it’s not really what I think of when contemplating my own hermitage.  If I were going to become a hermit, I’m pretty sure that I would not want any interaction with civilization.  Actually, to be honest, this is something that I’ve thought about since I was a child and read a National Geographic story about a Park Ranger who lived in the middle of Yellowstone (I think) during the winter and was so isolated that his supplies were helicoptered in for him.  He spent the time that he wasn’t working reading and writing.  That was the life, I always felt – being paid to be alone, and to read and write!  A dream come true!

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At some point I understood that jobs like that just were not available, then I got married and had children.  Even though I am an introvert, I can tolerate being around others for a period of time.  As an aside, my children had the earliest bed-time ever, mainly because I’d had enough of “togetherness” by the end of the day and knew my limits.  I need time alone to “de-compress” after a day with others, although my patience for being with groups seems to be getting smaller and smaller as I age.  Do any of you daydream of the day when you just might turn into a full-time hermit?  How would you go about it?  Let me know in the comments below.

May Goals

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Here it is already May!  The snow is finally gone and now we’ve got lots of wood to process for next winter.  And, that’s a good thing, since we’ll need a lot of wood if next winter is as cold and snowy as this past winter was.  So, as far as goals are concerned, here they are:

Fitness Goals:  I’ve got the goal of at least 18 miles of walking a week.  I’ve been averaging about 17 or so weekly, so this is definitely a doable goal.  Also keep on doing what I’ve been doing.

Spring Cleaning:  So far, I’ve done one floor of my house, and am working (about 3 rooms to go) on the next floor and have the basement to finish after that.  My daughter who is much cleverer than I am figured out a fabulous way to dust the logs on the walls (we have a log cabin), and they look so good!  We’ll continue doing that as we keep cleaning the house.

Writing:  I’m struggling with the fiction-writing thing lately.  I’ve been so busy cleaning (actually that’s just an excuse), but I intend to write at least one 600-word story this month, and the goal is two.  We’ll see on this one.

Lessons:  I hope to finish up with my coaching stuff and get my certificate.  This is one goal that I’ve had every month for months, and I just can’t seem to attain it.  I’m hopeful that this is the month.

Health:  I want to eat healthier.  It’s amazing what different kinds of unhealthy vegan foods there are out there in the world.  With the warmer weather, there will be more fresh fruits and vegetables on offer, and I want to start adding them into my diet.  No more vegan candy!

Mental Health:  The past few months have been pretty chaotic, and there are a lot emotional events that I need to process.  I haven’t been writing in my journal, so this month I’m going to try and work some issues out by doing that.  I really need to clear my head and take care of myself.

Anyway, there are my goals.  Have you made any goals for the month, and if so, what are they?  Let me know in the comments below, and we can cheer each other on. Happy May!

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