Here we are at the end of January. Twenty-eight days of the new year complete. How are those New Year’s resolutions (#newyearsresolution) holding up for you? By now, many have given up. As I’ve shared with you, I’m a little behind on things and had to give myself permission to take the month to catch up. So far, so good.
For example, if the goal was to get a book traditionally published, well, that requires a publisher to accept it etc. But if the goal is to get my book completed, edited and sent to a publisher, then I am the only one who controls the success of that goal.
Another consideration was that some of the goals were really more like behaviors. A goal (#goals) might be to lose 10 pounds. A behavior change is to do something like eat healthy meals. Perhaps a behavior change will support accomplishing a goal. It’s too easy to write down a bunch of goals that will later overwhelm you. This year write three or four real goals to accomplish, but then commit to one or two behaviors you would like to change.
It has been a while, it’s been a mixed-up couple of months. Just this week I’ve started to feel like I’m coming out of the surreal and back into whatever my new reality will look like. Between December 12 and 22, I lost two very special people. One a good friend, the other my mother-in-law. One was expected, the other eminent, but not expected so soon. These on the heels of encouraging a co-worker through the death of three family members and oh, did I mention having my appendix removed?
What felt so unreal was that I had spoken to my friend just a couple of weeks before and I had spoken to my mother-in-law earlier that day. They were here and now they aren’t. Life is precious.
A few days after my mother-in-law passed away I listened to a voicemail she had left me earlier in the month. I just wanted to hear her voice before saying a final farewell. Some might find that morbid, but we all mourn differently. Then I deleted both from my contact list. But neither has gotten very far from my thoughts.
Needless to say given the timing of both of these deaths, our holidays were less than relaxing. And starting the new year, well there has been a trail of things to clean-up and finalize. It has taken me 19 days into 2018 to begin to feel like I’m getting order back to my home, and back to living somewhat of a routine-driven life.
For the last several weeks, I’ve taken care of my family and I’ve worked. Two things that are a priority. But I haven’t had much brain-space for the other things I want to do — read, write and stay true to my new year’s habits consider goals for the year. Don’t worry, we will get there. If you’ve followed KK’s Candor for long, you know that I am all for setting goals and creating order. Rest assured both are coming soon.
We still have some challenges to work through. But doesn’t everyone. We will get there with faith, love, and dedication.
Thank you for sticking with me. I look forward to moving forward in the year sharing with you the anecdotes of my life.
It’s intriguing to me the plethora of commercials offering middle-aged people programs and pills that make them feel like they are 25 again (who wants to be 25 again? I was young and dumb). Or they promise to stop the signs of aging. I can’t even tell if these products are vitamins, medications or therapy. I agree that as we age things about our bodies change. Sometimes those changes mean we can’t pull an all-nighter, or after a day of yard work, we are sore in places we didn’t know we had. We pace ourselves differently. Each of us ages differently. Why are we fighting so hard to not age?
The fact of the matter is we are all aging. We are changing. It’s going to happen. The challenge isn’t to turn the clock back, it is to move forward taking care of our selves and aging as gracefully as we can. To live lives that are purposeful until our last breath. It’s too easy to let ourselves slow down. We can sit down too early and then we get stuck in routines that can be unhealthy and waste a lot of time. Parents of young children spend their days working and caring for children. That’s the season they are in. Children grow up and need less of our care. With this season, we get some of our time back. What do we do with it? Do we get sucked into reality shows and TV watching every night? That is no way to let life go. Stay engaged.
So much of what I’ve noticed about the elders in my life is that while their bodies are aging their spirit is still very alive. They get up every day and do something — go to the store, go work in the yard, they read, volunteer, spend time with friends etc. They are active. They are engaged in living. It didn’t take a pill, potion, or therapy to accomplish this active elder life. I’m not sure what to call it, other than a decision. Even when their bodies do fail their desire to keep moving, they continue to live and be as active as their bodies will allow. They know their days on this earth are waning. Instead of sitting down and waiting for their last breath, every day they get up and make the decision to DO life.
Today is the day. It’s eclipse day. The day for which millions have waited and planned. We’ve had experts predicting and sharing with us how to get the most out of the eclipse. Here are a few of my thoughts.
Have your approved eclipse glasses. (@NASA) Check out Nasa’s safety tips for viewing.
Be realistic — We live in a time of amazing scientific advances in meteorology. Today we have weather warnings that save lives and the ability to predict to the minute when events like an eclipse will occur. With all these great resources, we can’t control the weather. WHAS meteorologist, Jared Heil, @whas11jared, posted a video a couple of weeks ago with the chances of clouds on eclipse day. If it happens just remember there is no controlling clouds, how they move or where they stay.
Be in the moment — don’t waste the few minutes you have observing to try and capture the photo or video. Take in this 100-year wonder. Consider the creator.
“Lift up your eyes and look to the heavens: Who created all these? He who brings out the starry host one by one and calls forth each of them by name. Because of his great power and mighty strength, not one of them is missing.” Isaiah 40:26 Think about how awesome this event is. Ponder the fact that when He set the moon, sun and stars in motion, He knew how they would orbit and when there paths would cross.
There have been two occasions recently that I found myself in the hospital, visiting not being cared for. As when anyone goes to the sit with a friend or family member it was impossible to plan for how much time is needed. What I learned about the way time works within the walls of a hospital is that the clock measurements are secondary to the events that take place.
Time is measured from having a test run to when the results come back from it. The next measurement is what will happen from those results. A CAT scan is ordered. Wait. Go have CAT scan run. Wait. Receive the results. All clear, good, breathe, next steps. Wait. The doctor will be in with the official diagnosis. Wait. Meds are offered every four or six hours. Shift change. New nurses, another round of vitals. Dinner comes at 5:00 p.m. Food services do seem to use a regular clock. Perhaps food service workers are the links to living on real-world time.
As a visitor, it’s an odd feeling to walk out of the hospital time warp and back into normal timekeeping to realize 10 hours have passed. If I had started knowing I would be there for a long period, would I have planned differently? Taken snacks? To be honest, sitting in the hospital with a family member, time really doesn’t matter, only they do and making sure they are being cared for. The time warp of hospitals is necessary to keep the health of the patient the priority. Here’s hoping for less time spent in the hospital and especially in a hospital bed.
I woke this morning thinking about the year we are about to close. As you may expect, my thoughts turned to my goals for 2017. In order to think forward, I had to consider the goals I had in 2016. Honestly, few of them were accomplished. Somewhere along the way, I lost focus. It’s been a challenging 12 months.
Admittedly, with the challenges came something more important than written goals, a deeper faith. For this I’m thankful. I close the year feeling closer to God and a little wiser about what’s important.
What will the new year bring? I’m not exactly sure. Yes, I will have written goals by this time next week. They will fall in the categories of mind and spirit, financial, and healthy habits. But the way they will be written will be different. It occurred to me that many times to accomplish a goal, we need to change a behavior. To change a behavior, we need to change our thinking.
As you open that fresh new calendar, reset the clock to hour one on day one of 365, examine your core values, your behaviors and your thinking. How will these translate into your goals for 2017?
Well ladies (young and old) this Maxine cartoon pretty much says it all. Leggings are NOT pants, nor were they EVER intended to be. I’ve been watching this phenomenon for months. Every time I see one of these fashion emergencies I just shake my head in disappointment. My judgement isn’t limited to those with robust bums or the aged, it is cast on the young and skinny as well.
I’m no couture expert, but I do know a couple of rules about what not to wear and how to wear clothing that looks good. Your outfit should complement your shape. It’s the difference between someone saying “I really like that outfit” and someone saying “That outfit looks great on you.” You make the outfit. If you are one to wear your leggings as pants, next time you don a pair, look in the mirror. Do they really flatter your figure or just give it smooth lines?
Leggings look cute with a skirt or dress. I sometimes wear them under my workout shorts in the winter. The styles with color or designs can really add some flare to your outfit. But they absolutely do not look good by themselves as a means of covering your lower extremities. The fashion industry confused some when they added pockets and tried to call them jeggings. Let me help you out — they are NOT pants.
Yesterday was the seventh day of my fast from soda pop. I gave up soda pop for one week. There really wasn’t a reason. I just decided to exercise my self-control. The only person I told was my husband. So, last Sunday was the last time I drank a coke. It was a delightful treat; a perfect fountain mix and just the right amount of ice topped with a lid and a straw.
I didn’t decaffeinate. Tea was my morning beverage. Besides, the caffeine from tea is actually better for you than that of soda. It is said that the body processes it at a more even rate so there are fewer highs and lows; less jitters. But I digress.
The day I missed my soda treat the most was Friday; five days in. It was a warm and sunny day. I was out and about taking care of some business and looking forward to the weekend. Like those who enjoy a cool brew after a work week, I missed my fountain soda; my favorite of which is Coca-Cola – no diet, full of sweetness and calories. The other difficult moment was after the baseball tournament we took the boys to have pizza for dinner. There is something very wrong about having pizza with iced tea. It just isn’t right. But that’s what I drank.
No earth shattering lessons were garnered by this exercise. I learned that if I put my mind to something, I can do it with little accountability. Before this week I may not have claimed that strength.
I’m not sure I felt any better physically, or lost any weight, but I wasn’t tired at odd times. I did miss the sugar. In the late afternoons admittedly I foraged through the leftover Easter candy. Not to worry, I confessed to my son. He was glad to share.
As of this posting time, I still haven’t had a soda. Not sure when I will partake. Even as I write this and think of the bubbles and ice dancing in a cup, the straw plunging in and the first draw, AAAAHHHH, I know it’s going to be good!
There are many stereotypes about women and their shoes. To be honest, if I had a little more excess in my budget, buying shoes would be my guilty pleasure.
Admit it ladies, the right pair of shoes can finish an outfit and provide just the right amount of sass for an evening out. I’ve had these shoes for a couple of years. Over the last few months I’ve noticed my faithful black shoes are looking tired and ready to retire. I can’t do it without finding the perfect replacement guaranteed to set the tone for any event. They have the perfect combination of platform and heal height. This will not be an easy task.
The hunt will be a challenge and a little overwhelming for this non-shopper. In the meantime, I can’t wear these any longer. Part of what is holding me back is the disposal process. Shoving them in a stinky trash bag seems so drastic. Maybe I will give them their own trash bag.
Their epitaph —
Here in this bag lays a pair of fun (and comfortable) shoes, thank you for serving my wardrobe so well. Farewell friends — rest easy in shoe heaven. Kick your heals up a little.
I went to the grocery Tuesday (yes, two days before Thanksgiving). My primary purpose was to pick up the fresh turkey we had ordered. Admittedly, there were a few other items, but nothing major. As I walked in there were people exiting with heaping cart loads of groceries. The store was abuzz with shoppers. There was a hustling energy much like gift shopping on Christmas Eve. It made me wonder if Thanksgiving was a surprise to these shoppers much like Christmas is to those who shop the day before. Or instead of shopping early, they chose to just wait and risk the possibility that the cranberry sauce in a can might be sold out or the pumpkin spice might be gone. Just wondering.
Truly friends we have much to be thankful for in this life. We are rich in friends, family and opportunity. There probably will not be any shortage in the grocery you find yourself in tonight at 10 p.m. (there is always that one key ingredient that was forgotten).