Archive for December, 2010

The Power of One….

December 30th, 2010 No Comments Tags: , , , , ,

One song says that “one is the loneliest number”. That’s not necessarily true. There is a power in coming together as one – you and me. Here is a New Year’s wish from me to you. This is one of my favourite songs that never ceases to inspire me. This will surely fire up your heart and soul. Just what we all need as we meander into 2011.

Take a few minutes to listen to this music video right to the end. I’m sure you’ll agree and pass it on. And oh, crank up the volume……

Happy New Year!!

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Promises, Promises: Tricks & Gimmicks to Lose & Trim

December 29th, 2010 No Comments Tags: , , , , , , ,

Oh for the love of tricks and gimmicks touting weight loss assurance with ultra toning while luring you to buy buy buy. April fools isn’t even in sight. Yes folks, the diet marketers are out in full force this week it would seem preying on your wish for a slimmer, trimmer you. Keep a cool head and that credit card in your pocket book and don’t give any of these gimmicks another thought.

Let’s start with the plastic boot mat that doubles as a sit up contraption. It looks like they hired the muscle laden models that have been out of work from the BoFlex bust with the prettiest sets of six packs you ever did see. Listen people, if you use it you’ll lose it. All you really have to do is commit to doing sit ups and other toning exercises simply by getting down to business and doing it. Repeat and within months you’ll be more toned like magic….

You need to be dumber than a dumb-bell to fall for the the shake weight gimmick. The commercial has these muscular mambos doing the hokey-pokey shaking these dumb bells looking like they’re going to burst a blood vessel in their forehead. Ya, “feel the burn” baby….Ok maybe it’ll solve your constipation problem but it looks pretty gimmicky to me. If you have normal dumb bells at home, brush the dust off of them, then make sure you use them as they were meant to be used and you’ll become stronger. Repeat and within months you’ll be more toned like magic….

Ah yes, then there’s the Flirty Girl Fitness having you dance to Booty Beat music and Chair Dance disco. Hmmmm the girl giving the testimonial exclaims “no other program ever worked for me like this before!!” Maybe Betty Sue you never shook your booty like that before. Did you ever think of that?? Oh yes and the “fitness pole” that doubles as a stripper pole that comes with it will surely make you lose weight….NOT. Look ladies, get off your duff, turn up the tunes and shake shake shake, shake your booty. You can do Flirty Girl Flabless with your own music and chair and whatever else you want to shimmy around. Just get moving. Repeat and within months you’ll be more toned like magic….

Then there’s the “5 Hour Energy” drops. Just what I’ve been looking for :-) The commercial shows some bumpkin sleepy head dragging their tired butt out of bed and taking a few drops of this elixir then TA DA they reach the front door all refreshed and energized to take on the day. Oh please, having a balanced breakfast every morning after good night’s sleep is a boring alternative to the magic drops but it works even better.

So people, there’s promise for yet more tips and gimmicks competing for your hard earned dollar this New Year. Save it!! Stash those extra dollars away for a special reward for yourself by making a real resolution this year to go slow and steady with moderation a level head and commitment. It might not be magical or hit the airwaves but it WILL surely work. Repeat and within months you’ll be more toned like magic….trust me….

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Propel to Change All Year

December 28th, 2010 No Comments

Well folks you know where I stand on this topic of making New Year’s resolutions. In two words I don’t. What’s so magical about January 1st anyways? If this is your only day to make a plan and check it twice you’ve got an excuse to be naughty and not nice whole year before pulling up your socks until next New Year’s – nay nay. Any day is a good day to make a goal to better yourself. I thought I’d make a list of ideas to consider now and to refer to all year though.

DO – Aim to get more active every season of the year.

DON’T – Eat with distractions, especially in front of the TV.

DO – Work toward having more meals together as a family.

DON’T – Start any fad diet.

DO – Try a new easy, healthy recipe every few weeks and aim to cook more.

DON’T – Weigh yourself every day. You’ll go batty.

DO – Talk with your fellow employees about making your workplace healthier this 2011.

DON’T – Eliminate your favourite foods, you’ll just crave them like crazy.

DO – Plan to make food choices using all of the food groups.

DON’T – Follow the crowd, follow your own inner voice and plans.

DO – Take the RealAge test once per year. It’s VERY insightful.

DON’T – Make excuses. Trust me, there are people worse off than you, so tune your attitude in.

DO – Get in the habit of reading food product labels. Knowledge is power.

DON’T – Change your plans like the wind changes direction every time the news reports on a different study.

DO – Take your annual physical check up and dentist visit. Stay on top of things because prevention is key.

DON’T – Take anecdotal advice. Just because Aunt Jane is a smart accountant, doesn’t mean she knows squat about nutrition.

DO – Work in small rewards and love yourself more.

DON’T – Aim for perfection. That’s as unrealistic as the hills are old.

DO – Work on looking and feeling better. You may do better when you feel great.

Ok, so there you have it,  some food for thought as we propel ourselves to the New Year.

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Imagine….that

December 27th, 2010 No Comments Tags: , , , ,

Even though Christmas is over, I thought I’d give you one more gift. This is worth a listen any time of the year.

As this last week of the year meanders into 2011 it’s helpful to find ways to get motivated, to lift our spirits (without alcohol!!) to act better, be better, make nice and work toward making this world a better place. Give this a listen and it will surely lift and fill you up. I think I’ve heard this song a thousand times. Each time I hear it, it makes me pause and listen with hopes the words sink into my every pore.

We can always aspire to be better. When we do this in our own circle, then we’ll have a chance to make this world a better place too.

What John Lennon imagines is what I want for me, my family, my nieces and nephews, you and our world.

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Think Shrink

December 25th, 2010 No Comments Tags: , , , , , , , ,

I don’t know about you, but I need to take action on my stomach stretch receptors and fast, to help make them shrink back to normal, don’t you?? Between the parties, the dinners,the lunches and the brunches my tum-tum has gotten used to eating and drinking a bit more than usual, do ya think? If I don’t do a full court press on this situation soon it might be hard to do a 180 if I wait until January 1.

Last week I had a meeting in my office and around 10:00am my stomach was making those supposed hunger grumbling sounds as if I was fasting for Ramadan and it was almost sundown. It wasn’t. I just had breakfast a few hours ago, and my brain knew that my stomach was playing a game – na na na na na.

One important strategy to do is up the ante on exercise and activity now that you have some spare time on your hands. Take in all that winter has to offer, bundle up and vamoose outside and get moving.

The other thing NOT to do is fall prey to the ole “oh, I won’t eat all day and wait for dinner”. No no no on that one. You can head down a slippery slope of binging and fasting as fast as you can say Dahoo Dorey. Don’t skip ANY meals and make sure you get your appetite suppressant- protein in meals to ensure you feel satisfied. If your blood sugar plunges too quickly by just nibbling on fruit all day you’ll be tempted to nosh on those many leftover goodies. Why do they call them goodies when at this point we know they aren’t??!!

Speaking of which, make a plan to share your goodies with neighbors, family, friends, perhaps freeze some. But if all of these treat dishes are sitting under your nose for the coming week you can do a big slide-a-rooney from now to New Year’s and your slinky black number you were planning on wearing New Year’s Eve might need to be taken out.

I don’t think that’s part of your 2011 plan. So put your thinking cap on and fast, make a plan, check it twice and for goodness sakes, think shrink!!

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A Piece of Peace

December 23rd, 2010 No Comments Tags: , , , , ,

A piece of fruitcake.

A piece of jewellery.

A piece of plum pudding.

A piece in the centre of the table.

A piece of trifle.

A piece of technobabble.

A piece of brownie.

A piece of a puzzle. Hmmmmmm

There are a lot of pieces of stuff this time of year – food stuff, material stuff, technological stuff. You name it, it’s out there and at a better price this week than ever. Take a moment to think about your best material stuff. Does it make you happy? Does it bring you joy? Does it make you feel superior than others because you have this special piece in your possession? Do you feel less than when you don’t have your special piece? Oh for the love of stuff – those bits and pieces.

Of all of the gifts I hope for you to receive this Christmas, I hope you get the best piece of all – peace. It is a choice to seek and find peace you know. It’s right there for the taking. You can find peace in special relationship bonds, peace in serene music, peace in quiet moments, peace in your home, peace at your work, peace while you’re driving. If you look hard enough you can find peace. Sometimes it’s not all that apparent, but it’s there. I’ve always loved that line of Glinda The Good Witch from the Wizard of Oz telling Dorothy she had in her possession all along the – missing piece to get her home to Kansas. Peace is like that for all of us. It’s there for the taking, but you have to choose to find it and keep it, nurture it and cherish it. Peace.

With peace brings serenity.

With peace brings answers.

With peace brings joy.

With peace brings sensibility.

With peace brings goodness.

With peace brings what’s right.

Choose peace.

May peace be with you & yours this Christmas, and may God bless.

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Have Yourself a Merry Little Realistic Christmas

December 22nd, 2010 No Comments Tags: ,

Well the big day is almost here. I’m always struck by the line uttered by the Grinch “….and the noise, noise, noise, noise …..” That pretty much sums it up for many by this point in time. I’ve confessed to having the Sirius Christmas station playing daily since just before Advent in November, putting up my decorations, making the numerous preparations for the idealic, story book day. Ah from the jewelry commercials on TV to the perfect Toys ‘R Us joyous time, by now reality has set in hasn’t it? Sign me up for the un-perfect Christmas, because that’s how it unfolds, so let’s get a reality check and fast. Fa la la la la la la la la…… No, I haven’t seen Mommy kissing Santa Clause, but I saw her watching Doctor Oz!!

At this point I’ve heard that song “It’s a Marshmallow World in the Winter….” about a hundred and three times. One more time and l’m ready to yank the cord out of the wall and pitch the 2 speakers outside. Yes, just one more time….. Bahhhh….

Oh yes and the side order of guilt. When you try to divide your time between this family member and that. And what do you get after a visit to your elder neighbour? “Don’t be such a stranger.” Stranger? Me, didn’t I just come to visit. Doesn’t that qualify me to be taken off the “naughty” list to the “nice” one? Stranger. Good grief…..

Then comes the second guessing of what you bought everybody. Ya my mind is wondering if cousin Cora’s gonna like what I got her, let alone sister Sarah – ug. And after making over 120 packages of truffles I missed a bunch a people from my list by running out of them already. Oh brother.

Then comes the dinners, the parties, the lunches and brunches with the outfits that were meant for each of these shin-digs. I just dusted my new black sweater with icing sugar down the front from partaking in yet another of my Mom’s crescent cookies while standing up – oy the timing! Am I practicing what I’m preaching YET?? Come on girl, read up…follow the loser already….follow the loser….don’t be one…

And this time of year comes one bug after another – who’s got the cold, who’s got the flu, who’s got the fever and who’s coughing up a lung. Ya that special someone who is destined to sit right beside me that’s who, at the Dahoo Dorey Christmas Dinner……welcome welcome Influenza A!!

With all the reality TV shows these days I think Hollywood needs to create a true to life Christmas special based on Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. It’ll be called Frost Bite and the Twelve Dolts. Instead of the characters being Sneezy, Doc, Grumpy, Happy, Sleepy, Bashful and Dopey the cast will be Snooty, Jock, Frumpy, Slappy, Sleezy, Boastful and Gropey. There will be cameos from Sneezy, Grumpy, Happy and Dopey of course, plus Cranky. I can just see the story line now. And you won’t even need 3-D glasses it’ll be so real.

Yes indeed, sign me up for a realistic Christmas, because that’s exactly what we’re gonna get. So cut the fairy tale antics with raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens and enjoy the real day without the sugar coating. Except of course for that icing sugar dust you dropped down the front of your new sweater again. And I’ll have an extra helping of the pity pudding….and don’t give me “the look” when I do…..

And have yourself a Merry little realistic Christmas, and may all of your Christmases be white. Well ours will be green because of global warming, but what the hey….. God bless us every one and to all a good night!!

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Lunar Eclipse of Winter Solstice

December 21st, 2010 No Comments Tags: , , , , ,

I love how Mother Nature gives us signs to wake up out of our robotic oblivion. We were overcome last night with the mystery and intrigue of a lunar eclipse. One that hasn’t taken place in over 2,000 plus years apparently. Hmmmmm. Just like the great star shining in the east was a sign to the Three Wise Men, so this is a sign for us.

It was a clear night, and as per my usual routine I awoke to take care of the call of Mother Nature plus cool off from my nightly hot flash. It was around 1:35am when I decided to meander downstairs to catch a glimpse of the man in the moon. I went from window to window looking without any luck. Feeling so hot anyways, I decided to step outside into the brisk winter’s night wearing my kitty flannels. Still no sight of it. I got relief from the heat then scampered back to bed. Thank goodness no one was in sight :-)

As odd as it sounds I look forward to the winter solstice – the shortest, darkest day of the year and beginning of the winter season. Each day ahead will be a glimmer lighter and that symbolizes hope for me. I got up early for my morning walk. I love being out about 5 minutes before the break of dawn. There’s a 10 minute window where the reflection off the snow glows a mysterious purple before the sun rises. Indy says something must be in my porridge. But it’s true, look for it yourself.

This was a special morning with the magnificence of the full eagle’s moon shining like a humungous white beach ball low in the sky. I was treated to the silence of this early morning with the intermittent chirp of cardinals off in the distance. I too take this lunar eclipse as a sign for me as I take my first winter morning walk. I strolled amongst the dormant trees standing tall along my route. They symbolize our human potential, lying dormant within. This special day is our reminder that it’s up to us to dig inside and become who we were meant to become, to snap out of our robotic monotony. And follow our dreams.

There is your shining star in the east.  Are you following it? What are you waiting for?

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Santa Baby…..

December 20th, 2010 No Comments Tags: , , ,

I know Santa. In fact I’ve met him. For many years in a row I got my picture taken with him way back in the 60′s. In the past few years I spotted Santa off season. He works at the Mission Hill’s Winery in Kelowna at the wine tasting station. That’s what his name-tag said anyhow and I’m sure his driver’s licence says the same thing. I also saw him in the summer taking a cruise down the Danube. He thought he was travelling incognito, but I knew differently. His beard gave him away. He ate an awful lot of cookies too. And alas I just saw him in Munich waving and riding a bike, how jolly! This time his costume gave him away. Ho Ho Ho Ho ho

Whatever our age the mystique and mystery of Santa is alluring. He’s even better than Robinhood because he doesn’t steal from anybody. He gives to everybody. I love the symbolism of Santa. That good deed doer. I know there is a good deed doer like Santa who lives in all of us, young and old. The magic is, that it isn’t about the material stuff. It’s about giving of oneself, showing up. It can be little, it can be big. Sometimes it’s the tinniest thing that can make the biggest difference in someone’s day.

Each year, the Sunday before Christmas, elves in my neighbourhood organize a Christmas caravan. Come rain, come snow, come sleet a sleigh cum moving van with volunteers meanders through each and every street playing Christmas carols collecting food, clothes and money for those in need. It warms my heart that I’m lucky enough to live amongst such good deed doers like these. I save stuff up all year long for this day. Ya I wrote about my “Circle of Friends” August 10.

For me, this time of year with Santa around, reminds me to tap into our Santa within. To also remember to keep this good deed doing spirit even after all of the decorations are taken down and stored away. It can be a small deed or a big one. The magic of it is that when you give a little bit, you feel so good it fills you up inside and encourages you to do yet another. It’s contagious. Keep the spirit of Santa within you all year long, even if red isn’t your colour.

A Merry Ho Ho Ho Ho Ho Ho Ho Ho Ho
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One Lecture You’ll Cherish – To View or To Give

December 19th, 2010 No Comments

There are few people who like to be lectured to. This is truly different; however, so trust me!! For many, next week will bring the gift of time with some days off. Take an hour and listen to Randy’s lecture. Ya I know this isn’t new, but what he says never gets old. This is my gift to you – a source of inspiration, wisdom and bravery that will touch you to the core. Just what we seek this time of year.

This post is also a gift to my niece who is going through the process of apply to universities/colleges shortly. The thought of “what I want to be when I grow up” is daunting for any 17 year old. I’m 49 and still trying to figure it out!! Sit down with your mom, honey, and watch this together with an open mind and heart. The journey ahead will meander as it may, but you just need to start. Good luck!!

Finally, if you are still looking for a gift idea for your friend, aunt, neighbour, secretary or anyone with a heart, pick up a stack of The Last Lecture book. It’s a keep sake that everybody will appreciate. It’s also a double gift – one for your loved one and one for Randy’s family. You can’t say that when you give a box of chocolates, can you??

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