Be Yourself

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On our journey through life, we’ll sometimes find other people who seem to have it all.  To the outside world their lives look wonderful, and, we’ll think, well if we could just be them, life would be great.  But the fact of the matter is, we have no idea if their lives are as great as we think they are…nor do we know if they are actually happy.

Instead of looking to others as a way to figure out how to be or how to live, each one of us needs to be who we are, not to copy someone else. Each one of us is an individual, and as such we’re one of a kind.  There is no one else exactly like us in the world.  That’s the way we were made, and that’s what makes the world so diverse and interesting.

So, okay, what’s my point?  Don’t look to others to gain your confidence.  Every day try to be a better you than you were yesterday.  Take the time to figure out what you want, how you want to live, what you want to do.  This life that you are living is yours, no one else’s, so try your best to live it the way you want.  Dream about how you’d like your life to be, write those dreams down and set goals to achieve to bring those dreams to fruition.  You can start by believing in yourself.  Use a simple affirmation – “I believe in myself” to bring your confidence out of hiding.  Say your own affirmations several times daily.  Find yourself, be yourself.

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Be Your Own Savior

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Here’s a nasty little secret for you – no one is coming to save you.  Here’s another one – you’re never going to win the lottery.  Yep, if you want that prince on the white horse to come save you, you’re going to be waiting until you’re in the grave.  No one is coming.  You have to be your own savior.

You know what the worst part of this is?  You’re going to have to do the dirty work.  That lottery ticket isn’t going to be the “one”, by the way this is especially true if you don’t even buy a lottery ticket, but sometimes fantasize about what you would do if you won.  (This is me…I actually do this occasionally).  See, we all are looking for a savior.

The problem is that none of us wants to do the work it takes to change our lives.  Most of us want to magically wake up in the morning and all the hard work is done, and we’re suddenly living our dream life.  That would be great.  But it’s not going to happen.

So, what do we do?  One of the first things to do is to admit this to yourself.  Admit that you’re going to have to do the work.  Admit that you are worth it…this is the most important part.  You need to feel that you are worth all the hard work.  That the life you’ve dreamed of for so long is what you’re worthy of.  And then, you need to make a plan, set some goals, and start the work.  The only way to fulfill your dreams is to do the work.  Be your own savior.

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Honoring Promises

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I had a wonderful friend who was roughly 40 years older than I am.  Her name was Millie and she lived across the street from me.  A few years after I met her she became my unofficial mother due to family problems.

Millie was always there with solutions to issues, a shoulder to cry on, or most importantly, a good story and a laugh.  My children loved to go visit Millie to “help” her with her chores, read, or just be with her.  She was a special person, and the closest thing to a grandmother they had.  We often talked books, characters and plots.  She was an avid reader also, and we were always comparing books and authors.  Eventually Millie became very sick with ALS, and died.  Since she was a fan of Sue Grafton’s Alphabet Series, one of her regrets was that she wouldn’t live long enough to finish the series.  Since her children didn’t read, she wanted me to read the entire “Kinsey Series” as she called it as a remembrance to her.

Y is for Yesterday

This task took me longer than I’d like to think about to complete.  I was always looking for ways to avoid it.  For one thing, I’d have to completely understand that she was gone, and not just away at the hospital, and this was something that took me a long time to get through.  For another thing, Sue Grafton hadn’t finished the series, and not only that, she was taking a long time to do so.  Finally, about two years or so ago, I decided I’d start the series and read it over a period of time, planning on finishing whenever the last novel was published.  This was not to be, since as all of us Sue Grafton fans know, the alphabet ends at “Y”.  (For those of you who don’t read Sue Grafton, she died in 2017 from cancer without finishing her series.)  So, for now, we’re all left wondering what did become of Kinsey Millhone?  I’ve put my imagination to work and come up with a few theories, but the truth is, we probably never will know.

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Honoring promises is important.  One reason for my not doing this sooner was fear that if I did finish, my memories of Millie would fade.  Yes, that is nonsensical, I know.  But, once I started the series, I was so glad.  The character of Kinsey Millhone has been an exciting one to get to know.  She’s added a lot to my life, and I often think about her.  Not only does Sue Grafton live on, but my wonderful friend and surrogate mother lives on as well.  Thank you, Millie, for this last gift.

 

 

Does Peace Begin on Your Plate?

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There are many choices that we can make.  What you choose to put on your plate is definitely one of them.  While almost everyone who has chosen to forgo animal products grew up eating those same products, however, at some point these people made a choice to not add to the violence and destruction that is so pervasive in the world.  After all, if you can choose to not cause harm to anyone else – including other species, why wouldn’t you?  When I finally confronted that question myself, I knew that I had to get off the Vegetarian diet and become Vegan.

This was a hard decision, not because of myself, but because of the other people in my life, and others in general.  The meat and dairy industries generate a lot of money, approximately $864.2 billion annually in the U.S. alone.  Think of the incentive there is to vilify vegans, along with doctors who speak out against these industries, and you will see where the pervasive negative attitudes come from.  Not only are vegans portrayed in various media outlets as being slightly insane and/or obnoxious, but there are numerous examples of how extreme veganism is.  Why being vegan is considered extreme is beyond my understanding.  Isn’t raising an animal for the sole purpose of killing and eating that animal extreme?

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Not only are there the ethical questions regarding killing an animal that doesn’t want to die, but if you add to that the environmental damage done by the massive world-wide meat and dairy industry, you can see how the destruction becomes unsustainable.

Now, back to my question, does peace begin on your plate?  My answer is yes, of course it does.  There is only so much in the way of sustainable food, and when one country has a problem with consumption that causes others to suffer peace also suffers.  I’ve left links below for you to read.  Look up other information and decide for yourselves whether or not you believe that peace begins on your plate.

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https://www.google.com/search?q=How+much+money+does+the+meat+industry+make+a+year%3F&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjknMjQ4djbAhWs6IMKHZpCBUIQzmcIQQ&biw=1366&bih=654

http://www.jhunewsletter.com/article/2016/03/the-representation-of-food-on-television

http://science.time.com/2013/12/16/the-triple-whopper-environmental-impact-of-global-meat-production/

https://content.sierraclub.org/grassrootsnetwork/team-news/2016/10/10-reasons-why-meat-and-dairy-industry-unsustainable-0

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/cutting-back-on-meat-consumption-could-help-end-hunger-by-2030-experts_us_55f3424ee4b077ca094f27a5

http://www.onegreenplanet.org/environment/world-hunger-population-growth-ditching-meat/

Taking Care of Yourself

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The hardest thing to do is to invest in taking care of yourself.  And, by investing I don’t mean just money, but time and effort.  As a mother, ever since I gave birth, the majority of my life has been spent in taking care of my children.  I remember having to have the babies in the bathroom with me when taking a shower, since my children seemed to need only small catnaps both day and night.  Therefore, I was usually passed out on what available surface there was during these teeny tiny little “naps” (notice the quotes).  So, as they grew, and got to be teenagers who loved to sleep, I began to sleep a little later.  But, I’ve since found out that anything over 5 or 6 hours makes me feel like throwing up, so I’ve gotten used to just getting up when I first wake up (instead of trying to go back to sleep) in order to work out.

That’s the first thing I do on a daily basis for myself.  Other than that, it’s mostly an effort.  I’ve just recently started getting my hair cut at a salon after going for 5 or 6 years without a haircut.  Who needs a haircut when you always wear your hair in a bun?  Every time my appointment comes around, I have to force myself to go.  The excuses are varied – it’s raining, there is snow, I don’t really have the money…  Seriously, it’s not expensive to get your hair cut every two months.  I’ve recently bought myself some face masks but using them again is an issue.  I seem to be looking for the “right” time to do so.

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Eating properly is another issue.  I buy lots of fruit every week but seem to think that if I eat an orange, there won’t be enough for someone (the mythical someone) else to enjoy.  Of course, there is plenty of fruit at the end of the week, but I still think that I can’t eat much of it.

Taking care of yourself is an important part of your health and your well-being.  What do you do on a daily/weekly basis to take care of yourself?  Do you find it difficult to make time for you?  Let me know in the comments below.

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Do You Love Animals?

 

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Most people love animals. Who doesn’t love their cats and dogs? But does that mean that you love all animals? Do you also love cows, calves, sheep, lambs, chickens, chicks, pigs and piglets, also? Well, I hate to burst your bubble, but if you eat meat, eggs and dairy, you don’t love animals. I know, it’s a harsh statement, and I once “loved” animals, but I also ate them. Most of us who are plant-based were once just like you. We divorced ourselves from the reality of farmed animal’s lives. We lived with the blinkers firmly in place, and simply tried not to think about it. However, there is so much scientific evidence out there showing us how cruel the practice of raising animals to eat is, that we really morally can’t continue to do so.

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From animals who sing, to the fact that they form attachments with each other, our understanding of other animals continues to grow. The level of animal sentience is much higher than was thought, and the new evidence just continues to grow. I am including links below for your education on these topics. Please read, follow the links within this articles to the scientific studies, and think about your own choices. If you have any questions or comments please leave them below.

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https://www.alternet.org/food/new-online-calculator-lets-you-see-impact-your-meat-intake-animals-climate-and-your-health?akid=16743.302291.SXinIv&rd=1&src=newsletter1088934&t=8
https://www.care2.com/causes/5-animals-you-didnt-know-could-sing.html
https://www.alternet.org/animal-rights/after-researching-how-pigs-are-treated-their-meat-cambridge-professor-went-vegan-video?akid=16710.302291.ez6JQ3&rd=1&src=newsletter1088387&t=8
https://www.alternet.org/animal-rights/dog-cow-pig-world-sentience-there-no-difference-video?akid=16710.302291.ez6JQ3&rd=1&src=newsletter1088387&t=6
https://www.care2.com/causes/10-amazing-facts-about-animal-sentience.html