Musings on the Last Day of the Year

Buried driveway and road
One of my all-time favorite holiday CDs is Groovelily's "Striking Twelve" - I've seen it twice in a real live theater and it never ceases to amaze and thrill me.  If you haven't heard of it, it is a modern day rock musical dramatization of "The Little Match Girl" - which was a really depressing fairy tale by Hans Christian Anderson.  Now, you might ask, how can a really depressing fairy tale inspire end of the year musings?  I suggest you download and buy the CD, but barring that - I can tell you that this show/CD/musical points us to what is truly important in life in a comical way.   The people around us and the love we share is ALL that really matters in the end. 

This is where my thoughts are going in these last hours of the last day of the year.  As many of you know, 2017 was a very tough year for me.  I had a wake-up call for my health in the form of an unexpected heart attack.  Medical researchers are just beginning to scratch the surface of the complexity and intelligence possessed by the human heart.  When we connect with others in a real and meaningful way - we spark electromagnetic currents that are real and measurable. 

This means that we are on the verge of scientific proof that being with those we love strengthens us and heals us.  Likewise, being with those who wish to harm us can do just the opposite. 

This year, make it a point to reach out to those who live in isolation or who could use a kind word or touch.  Your visit to a shut-in or a convalescent home can be healing to someone who really needs it.  If you have family or friends that you dearly love but have let a silly fight or grudge separate you - make this the year that you reach out and heal the rift. 

You may actually save a life by doing so.   Peace out - and Happy 2018!!! 


Ten Ways to Get Back to Health After the Holiday Frenzy

If you are like me, you probably lost track of healthy eating habits somewhere between mid November and December 25th.  Like they say, if you fall off a horse the very best thing is to get back on and ride, and that is exactly what I plan to do. 

Here are the ten ideas I have brainstormed to get me back on track.  I'll let you all know how I do!

1)  Set up new habits so they become automatic.  Exercise is tough to fit in and getting enough water almost impossible in the holiday rush.  Getting back on track means making it a no-brainer so that I don't fall off the wagon next year.  I have set a rule so that every time I walk through the kitchen, I have to take a sip of water.  Everytime I visit the bathroom, I have to do ten squats.  These rules are not going to turn me into Serena Williams, but they represent baby steps to help me along my path to health.  Squeezing half a lemon in a big glass of water and keeping it in the kitchen as a daily item helps too.

2) I saw on TV where the star of SWAT (the cute one whose name I don't remember with the washboard abs) does 500 stomach crunches per day.  I am starting with 25 and working my way up.

3) Tracking food intake on Sparkpeople may be time consuming and a pain, but it REALLY shows you what you are putting into your body. I started this again this morning, and was surprised to find that by lunch time I was close to my daily intake of fats already

4) Hide the remaining cookies and candy - better yet, take them to someone who has no issues with sugar, fat or health.

5) Go outside and walk a little bit every day. The fresh air is invigorating, and walking is great exercise.  We walked our doggies yesterday around our local lake

6) Probiotics help with the holiday indigestion.  Drinking Kombucha is a wonderful way to fill your body with beneficial bacteria and help destroy the bad bugs that have been fed with all that candy.

7) Drinking tea helps flush out toxins and is deeply satisfying on a cold day.

8) The game Just Dance for the PS4 is a lot of fun, great exercise, and just requires that you have a Sony PS4 and your phone.  I do this game when there is no one around to laugh at my trying to learn the latest moves. 

9) I bought a pajama warmer so that I can be warm and toasty when I go to bed, and then set the Nest to turn down the temp to 65 in the night which is said to be the best temperature for sleeping.  Sleep is key to replenishing those pre holiday energy stores.

10) Last but not least, I am taking the time to play with my five animals more.  Playing with pets reduces the stress hormone cortisol; a constant during the holiday hustle and bustle.   Heidi (below) LOVES her belly scratched!  Scratching her belly helps both of us in the long run.  IMG_0918


Happy New Year Everyone!