De-stress

It has been difficult to find time to write in the last few days. We have some family here from out of town and finding time alone is not easy. I miss it but I am also enjoying my family. This has been a good holiday but I will be glad to get back to normal.

One of the things that can be hard is to not be in a normal routine. It throws us off and makes it harder to relax. I will work through it in order to enjoy the time that we have together.

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The holiday season can be stressful for most of us. It is easy to obsess over shopping and wrapping and cooking until we are worn to a frazzle. In  the new year it is time to check how you are feeling and take some extra time to de-stress. The time after holidays can also be a let down. When we were living at West Point the cadets called it “gloom period.” If you live where the trees have all lost their leaves everything looks gray. It can make your life feel gray.

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Find something to brighten your life. Go out to lunch or dinner. Treat yourself to a bubble bath or eat your favorite food. It will help you slide into the new year ready to embrace it.

Plan a joyous holiday

being happyChristmas is coming fast. I hope that I can shake off some of the “tireds” and get everything done. I love this time of year but it is really hectic. It is also a difficult time for those who are suffering from grief or any other crisis. We need to be mindful of others and help where we can. If you have a friend who has no family to be with include them in your festivities.

For years we had another family joining us for Christmas dinner. The dad in the family had died and we made them part of ours. My family is noted for what my kids called “taking in strays.”

This can be a lonely time for others. I had to adjust to not having all my children around when they married, had families of their own, and moved away. Life is ever changing and we have to be willing to change with it. I choose to accept the joy that I have instead of longing for the things I don’t have. The past is gone and now is where we are.

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Celebrate the holidays in any way that works for you. Take a day for yourself. Do something special just for you. Plan something with friends. Don’t sit home and be sad. You can make a choice. Plan ahead!

Lasting Memories

My husband loves Christmas. He can’t wait until the tree is up and the decorations out. He bought the tree while I was in the hospital but had it delivered after I came home. It is now up and decorated. (which he did) I am good but still some tired.

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I managed to get enough energy to do some of the other decorations and things look pretty nice. We have pared down some over the years and don’t over do.

If we strictly followed our church’s thought we would not put up decorations until Christmas Eve and keep them up for the 12 days of Christmas ending on Epiphany. When I was a child my father and I would walk into the woods and cut a tree on Christmas Eve. That was such an exciting time for me. Just spending time with my father doing something special was enough. I remember it with such fond memories.

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I hope we were able to give those kind of memories to our own children. These are things that can’t be duplicated. Expensive gifts are nothing compared to time spent with parents. It is so wonderful when we spend time with our own children playing, what I call, “remember when….the time the dog opened most of the presents under the tree during the night??” Those are the things that last.

Spend on memories not things. The memories last.

Be creative..especially for others

Tuesday is a day that I always look forward to. On Tuesdays I meet with friends for knitting and conversation. We are a group who before starting this group did not know each other. We are all different. We are from different countries, different social groups. This makes the group inspiring and conversation is stimulating.

To add to it we are also being creative. One of the members is an amazing artist and does many pencil drawings for children to color. Each of us is creating something usually in yarn but not always. Most of the things we create are for others. We also offer free help teaching  to knitting for anyone who want to learn. This group is such a joy.

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scarf for one of my granddaughters

I have been knitting since I was a child. It reminds me of the my wonderful mother and the many things she taught me. The motion of my hands and the creating of something both beautiful (I hope) and useful have a calming effect. Knitting can allow the brain to rest (if not too complicated)  and the mind to let go of stresses. Seeing the finished product brings joy. Now that I have children, grandchildren and great grandchildren it is fun to do things for them and for friends.

All Hallows Eve

I have occasionally taken photos of the wonderful mail box in my neighborhood that gets decorated for every holiday. This is the latest. I love the Manatee even when he “au natural” but it is really fun to see what is coming next. Hope everyone enjoys(ed) All Hallows Eve and a blessed All Saints Day!

 

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Devils to angels

On Saturday we took our two Basset Hounds to do a home visit for a family wanting dogs from the rescue organization we got Crash from. The last step in the adoption process is a home visit from someone who volunteers to do this.

We decided to take our dogs to see how the family reacted. They have four children and it is good to see how the children do.

Our dogs are fine with strangers with one exception….they usually bark/howl at everything. If you have ever heard a Basset howl it is LOUD. We tend to call the sound AROO! Well we were in for the shock of our lives. Our two behaved like they were perfect dogs. No barking, loved the children, let everyone pet them….a shock! We thought we had taken the wrong dogs.

crash and tillie (2)

I remember when our children were little it was always interesting to see the monsters at home turn into angels. This is the same experience we had with the dogs. I wonder if our grown children talked to them?

It was a great visit and I hope the family loves the bonded pair of Bassets they have chosen. I am sure they will be approved. Our dogs are back home and behaving normally….that is barking at everything….AROO!

This is not our hound but wait for the howl!

 

Treat yourself

At our knitting group today I really indulged myself and ate a piece of cheesecake. It was fabulous! I don’t do that often and for some reason felt like I deserved it.

There are times when we should please ourselves. It is too easy to get caught into not treating ourselves. Turn loose of any guilt. We are allowed to do something nice for ourselves. Find something that you enjoy and do it.

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Take a bubble bath

Have a glass of wine

Go to a movie

Spend time with a friend

Have something special to eat

I’m sure that you could add many things to the list. Take the time to treat yourself!

Singing “in the rain?”

 

I grew up with this movie. In 1952 I was twelve years old. It became one of my favorite all time movies. This is dancing and singing in the rain. An easy thing to do when things are going well. Not so easy with life is not so good.

One thing I have found over the years. Singing helps me. It is hard for me to sing and feel bad. Especially if I sing something cheerful. Now, I don’t claim to be a great singer but I do enjoy it. It can often chase away the gloomies and set me on a better path. I will just put on some music that allows me to see with it and let loose. In the early 1960’s it was the era of the folk singers. I love The Kingston Trio, The Limelighters, Mamas and Pappas and many more. To sing with them perks me up. (Some you may not have heard of)

Finding something that perks you up is wonderful. It is easy to let the gloomies get you down. If we sink down it grabs onto us and we sink into the mire of depression. It is good to feel that coming and do something to stop the slide.

Find your own thing that will lift you up and use it!