Category Archives: Focus

Independence

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It’s Independence Day and I am practicing. I started the day with family in my nest and as they flew off in different directions, I found myself sitting alone in the moment. The day loomed before me, hours of nothing and my mind filled with lists of things to get done. The tasks are really mine alone and though I can ask for opinions and assistance I am draining my resources.

Today’s theme reminds me to try to think of things I can do by myself so I start with laundry, my old standby. I tidy up from a weekend of the hustle and bustle of busy family to the sound of the old Kit Cat Clock, getting everything restored to its original status. Beds made, bathrooms restocked with fresh towels, leftovers disposed of and those hours are still there.

I decide to take care of business so I log on and file a luckily purchased insurance claim to get a refund for the tickets to a concert hopefully purchased back in March. The claim requires documentation to support the needed refund so I attach the death certificate. That should suffice and I am notified by email that I should hear something within 10 days.

I’ve been Independent for a couple of hours when I hear the familiar ring tone of my sister calling. She provides a much-needed pep talk filled with good suggestions and experienced advice, the kind sisters know how to dose out, with measured understanding and sympathy. There is no time limit and I relax into the comfort of our conversation, the kind you can have with someone you’ve known for almost your entire life and have shared parents, childhood bedrooms and the majority of the firsts in your life with.

I hang up and feel better, ready to step into Independence again and take a hard look at the living room bookcase. I am kind, but ruthless to the departing companions. They have been read, pages turned and information absorbed. It’s time for them to be shared and knowing they will have a new life allows me to feel less sad filling the bag, as long as I repeat that over and over in my head. New life, new life, new life…

It occurs to me that is what I wish for myself as I practice my Independence, a new life, a chance to feel some peace and some calm without waiting for shoes to drop. A life with some hopefulness, healthy habits, creative hobbies, a family circle with a different configuration but love as strong as always and friendships old and new.

With planes flying love overhead and the promise of fireworks approaching, the sky seems filled with celebration, recognition of hard-fought freedoms. I look up at the pink tinged turquoise sky (my mom used to call it sky-blue-pink) and look for a sign of Gary; birds resting on the wires, hawks circling, bats coming out to feast, the first stars twinkling but like the new moon, almost invisible, he hides somewhere, making my Independence the only thing to hold on to tonight.

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Happiness

I went to the Topanga Film Festival this morning to see the documentary Happy and I started thinking about happiness, the concept, the reality and the possibilities. I have been following The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin for about a year now and enjoy the daily quotes and reflections, but I wondered,  how can I spread happiness, encourage happiness and find areas in my life to insert happiness? 

Encouraging signs are popping up everywhere, for example, my husband was given the book Stumbling on Happiness by Daniel Gilbert awhile ago and it was mentioned in the movie today,  and this quote that showed up today on Facebook from Weight Watchers:

                                “Life has no remote. You have to get up and change it yourself!”

So I know what I can do to make myself happy: 

incorporate a healthy lifestyle into my daily life,


                                                

read,

allow creativity to be a priority

spend time with my family

connect with my close friends

practice kindness and tolerance

Now I want to expand by giving more happiness:

sharing what I have to give

helping worthy causes

creating more happiness in my home

creating more happiness in my classroom

It is a commitment, but also a choice, to surround oneself with happiness.  It is a road I am choosing to walk.

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Day 2-B-Well 21 Day Detox Cleanse: Focus!

What a perfect word for today:  focus.  There are new things to focus on and some old friends that hang around daily, such as my morning workout.  Today was Curves as I am alternating between the Curves workout and my Couch to 5k training at the gym.  Walks usually come in the evening but today I had the pleasure of taking Charlie on a short walk through the park too!  Have you ever noticed how dogs are so good at living in the moment and totally focusing on whatever they are doing, even if that means sleeping or staring in the distance?  Charlie focuses on every smell and sound on our walk and he takes his time, walking slowly, enjoying the moment.  He is a great teacher!

I started off the day with my glass of water with the juice of 1/2 a lemon and came back from Curves and made a bowl of oatmeal (with a little Almond Milk), coffee and strange as it sounds, I grabbed a slice of smoked organic turkey for my protein.  I took my vitamins, including a pro-biotic, and felt great!

I had two doctors appointments and got my vision checked.  It is strange that as I age, I find that I am repeating my mother’s life.  She always had multiple doctors appointments and went prepared for a few hours of waiting in various areas of Kaiser.  Today I followed in her foot steps, bringing my lunch bag with extra water, almonds and a green apple.  I am focusing on being prepared and it worked.  My mom was a smart lady!  I used to think her habits were a bit silly, but now I realize how wise she was.

A Few Habits of my mothers:

Two drawers for socks ( white socks and black socks)

Reading the paper every morning

Watching the Tony Awards

Reading

Sending interesting articles to her children

Always bringing a water bottle with her  Why is it that we think our mother’s habits are silly until we are their age?

New prescriptions, new medications to read about and new glasses ordered, I stopped at Whole Foods Market on the way home to pick up a few items on the B-Well shopping list that I hadn’t found the day before.  Now I am completely “stocked” for the week.

I came home, made a quick lunch of salad and grilled chicken and then proceeded to swim and float in the pool, it is summer after all and I must have a little fun and relaxation.  I am finishing up a fun mystery book:  The Writing Class, by Jincy Willett and taking care of a few odds and ends.

So, my pictures, are lacking because Charlie, my dog, is terrified of the camera.  At first we just thought it was the flash, but now if he sees the camera, he wants to run out of the room.  I will work on this, I promise, but honestly my meals have not been that exciting yet.  On the positive side, I am feeling great with plenty of energy and not too hungry or filled with cravings.  I do have a challenge tonight because we are going to see Toy Story 3 and I will need a big bottle of water to keep me from temptation.  19 days to go!  Focus!

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Filed under Focus, Life thoughts, Power Words