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What makes you happy?

 Really happy?

Do you do it?

Do you do it enough?

So often in life we spend too much time doing things we hate, thinking we will be rewarded at some point.

For some people,  that works. They perform well in school, go to college, maybe post-grad, and are “successful” people.

For some there’s a twist that loops into an infinite cycle like a Moebius strip. They work nonstop, pull over time, and take work home. They’re trying to get by and to give to their family the things they think they deserve.

The flip side of this is what does their family want.  Ask them.  Do you know what they want more than toys, or nice cars?

TIME

 Time with you.  And if you think about it, what makes you happy?  Spending time with your family is probably at or near the top of the list.

This year don’t resolve to make more money or save enough to go on the dream vacation.

Make a promise to spend more time with your family, with your children. Take the time to play games and sit on the floor and play Barbie.

What you will accomplish for yourself, and for the world, is a more peaceful place in the long term.

Day 5 of the Blog-a-Thon
Day 3 of #getitout

Are you ready for Christmas?

7 Days until Christmas and 12 days until my surgery. Everyone keeps asking “Are you ready for Christmas? Do you have all your shopping done?” I wonder how we got here? Where Christmas turned into a mad frenzy of go here, go there, buy, buy, buy.

Doing it a little different

This year we’re having a relaxed Christmas. We are not having the big traditional spread. Big traditional spread means we work harder and longer to prepare enough food to feed our extended family and 3 more of equal size. We then eat leftovers until we can’t stand it. Why? Seems really wasteful, not just of money and food, but of time with the family that we’ve traveled to see.

We’re taking our kitchen time and trading it in for some floor time with the kids, maybe a nap or a walk in the snow together. Seems to me like a no brainer. (If you don’t really like your family anyway, this plan won’t work for you.)

So yeah, I’m ready for Christmas.  Ready for eggnog and playing with new toys that are the best ever, at least until next week. Ready to relax and enjoy my family.

Now, am I ready for day 12? NO. But with 12 days to get things together, I will be.

 I have a plan

 Day 1: Kitchen cabinets -seems like a silly place to start, but I’m use to my kitchen, I’m comfortable with it. But today, Day 1 is cleaning (sorting and organizing more than cleaning) the kitchen. Of all the things I don’t let go of freely, control of my kitchen is high on the list.

But when you’re physically not able to do things for yourself, you have no other choice but to let go.

I was surprised the first time I had this surgery.  I was certain I’d just have a day or two in bed and be able to enjoy the rest. I had a much longer recovery time and I wasn’t ready for letting others help me as much as I needed.

Organizing my cabinets lets me surrender control easier. After a conversation with Jennifer Hollander, an organizing professional, I felt much better about tackling the days ahead.  She said that people don’t know how or where to start and then get overwhelmed and quit before they begin. She told me to take it in little chunks.

Chunk one – the kitchen.

Most of you know me for my social media efforts, but those of you who know me well know that I have several things that I am passionate about, and a lot of them are green. One of those things is plants.  I am an Advanced Master Gardener, but you wouldn’t know it from looking at the fabulous weeds in my backyard. This was a crazy summer for many people, as it was for me.

I love that we live where there are trees that change color, but I also love evergreens! There is something magical to look out amongst the snow-covered blankets, and see the little hints of green. This is a how-to post on one of my favorite evergreen projects.

Some people buy small potted evergreens to place by their front door.  Some people hang wreaths of greenery on their front door. This is what I do to keep those evergreens close all winter long.

I trimmed back the mums that were in these pots, and watered them thoroughly.

(Any pot will do, but make sure that if it is not under a protected area, that it has room to expand or it will crack when it freezes.)

Next I gathered of a variety of evergreens. You can use various types of pines, hollies, magnolias, ivies, or anything that stays green all year long. (If you are using evergreens that are not from your own yard, be sure to ask permission first.)

I trimmed the bottom few branches from the cuttings and stuck them into the pots. If the bottom branches were large enough, I used them to fill in as well, being sure to get the clipped parts completely in the soil.

*****

Next, I added some store-bought glittery branches to add color and pizzazz.

These greens will remain green throughout the bulk of the winter even though they have been cut. The moisture from the soil will keep them fresh.

If you decide to make one of these for yourself, I would love to see your pictures!

Yeah… remember that one?

That was my very first computer.  I was recently asked to go to our local public radio station, 88.3FM  WNIN and record a bit for the “Plugged In”  show. Plugged In is a weekly technology show. They discuss technology news and topics with a focus on how they affect our daily lives.

They have a segment called “Ye Old Tech”.  I went in to tell about my Commodore 64 and came out with the realization that this gift may very well have been the gift the turned me geek – for life.   Enjoy…

Listen to it Here: Commodore-64

 

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