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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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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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.

Life Update

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I just wanted to update you on what’s been going on lately.  Last weekend I had a sleep-over with a nine-year-old boy who is a friend of the family.  It was an exciting time, since we were also cutting down two very large trees (that needed to be cut down for safety reasons), worked with a wood chipper, and logs to be cut up.  There were plenty of things going on, including hauling tree limbs, and we fit in a two mile walk with the dog.  He was a big help, and we had a lot of fun!

I’ve been struggling with my depression lately and haven’t been getting as much accomplished as I would want.  I’m making an effort to take my St. John’s Wort when I should (I must admit that I don’t always take it three times a day) and working on writing down my goals and trying to accomplish at least some of them on a daily basis.  If any of you have struggled with depression please share how you’ve dealt with it in the comments below, maybe you’ve got some advice that could help others.

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And, last, but not least, I’m still looking forward to some more consistent spring weather.  As I’m writing this, I’ve got both fires going because we actually had some freezing rain last night, and it’s still pretty cold outside.  Once it starts to warm up, I can see Spring cleaning happening.  But for now, I won’t be washing windows until it gets a little warmer.  So, what’s going on with you?

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100+ Days of Change

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I know that it’s only April, but I did want to post a blog about my journey of change that I started on January 2nd – not the 1st since I was up long past my bedtime on New Year’s Eve!  So, my major change has been to work out every single morning this year.  Knock wood, but so far, I have managed to do this.  I also changed how I work out.  I initially started with a combination of Denise Austin, Fitness Blender and my old-school Soloflex machine, along with my daily walks.  Then I decided that instead of doing weights only on Monday, Wednesday and Friday I would just do them every other day while trading off with pure cardio on the other days.  I don’t “do” leg day and then arm day – I just do all weights on one day.  This is easier for me, because one day is a longer workout, and the next is a little shorter – kind of like a “treat” on the shorter days.  And, we all need a treat once in a while.

Since I started in January I’ve made a few changes.  I started with a “lighter” Fitness Blender and then changed to a harder cardio.  But now I’m off Fitness Blender and am doing Boot Camp with Denise Austin instead.  I’m sure I’ll change that up at some point, but I’m enjoying huffing and puffing along with Denise.  I’d also like to eventually get back into Tae Bo with Billy Blanks, but I’m not there yet.  I have aged since the last time I did Tae Bo!  I’ve also added more miles to my weekly walking with the dog.  I’m trying to go on a longer walk at least three times a week, and I did do over 17 miles last week.

So, that being said, do I feel better?  Well, that’s a process I guess.  For the first month everything was sore, but I felt good.  Then, I hit a hard patch that lasted over a month and I just gritted my teeth and forced myself through it.  It wasn’t easy, and everything went wrong.  My back started to give me trouble, and everything just hurt – my knees, arms, legs.  But, for the past week or so, I’ve been feeling much better.  It does help to work out when you’ve just gotten up, because for the first part of it you’re not really awake!

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Is there a change?  Yes, I can see muscle, and my butt is looking less droopy.  I have more endurance and those long walks are not making my legs sore.  So, yes, there is a difference.  How are your goals for 2018 going?  Are you working on them, or have you given up?  Let me know in the comments below.  Remember that every day is a new beginning.

 

Goals for April

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Seeing as how my goals for March didn’t really work out all that well, I decided to forge ahead getting something done for the month, here are my goals:

  1. Novel checked and printed out for reading.
  2. 600-word short story written.
  3. Coaching lessons and homework done, certification requested.
  4. Spring cleaning accomplished with “some” crap discarded. I want to concentrate on actually cleaning before discarding.  That way the house is *gasp* clean.
  5. Organization of paperwork and filing.
  6. Adding more yoga to my workouts; walking 4 more miles per week.

I think that’s it…  If I add more to the list, I’ll let you know.  What are your goals for the month?  I’m so hoping that the snow is finished with us, that the weather gets a little bit warmer, and that the mud dries out.  Let me know your goals for the month, and we can encourage each other.

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Gritting Your Teeth & Getting on With It

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I’ve been dealing with a lot of pain and over-all depression lately.  Every workout seems like the worst one so far.  I’ve been dragging myself out of bed in the morning and getting through my workouts by the skin of my teeth.  It hasn’t been fun…in fact it’s been terrible!  But I’ve worked out every morning in 2018, and I don’t want to stop.  So, what to do?

I don’t know.  I feel like I’m at the end of my rope, but I do get up and carry on.  It may not be “pretty”, but I’m getting it done.  The main thing that’s changed is that a family member said some very hurtful, nasty things to me just a few weeks ago, and those comments seem to have seeped into my marrow and stuck with me.  Emotional and verbal abuse will do that.  Initially I seemed okay, but as time has gone on the comments are running in a loop inside my head.  Of course, the best way to combat this is to consider the source.  This individual is not considered a person to take anything he says to heart.  His main purpose in life is to make others feel badly about themselves.  I am not the only person he does this to, and this is just what he does.  I can’t change him, but I can counteract these comments with what I know is true.

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So I’m saying my affirmations twice daily (as opposed to only once a day), and focusing on my own stuff right now. I’m trying to replace the negative inside my mind with the positive.  And, I am stubbornly gritting my teeth and getting it done.  It’s a daily struggle but I’m doing it.  The worst thing would be to give up and let the depression take over.  So, if you’re in the same place, keep going.  Do your own thing, and try try try to remain positive.  Focus on you and what positive actions you can take.

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