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Tea For Three January 11, 2019

Posted by nrhatch in Food & Drink, Less IS More, Life Balance.
30 comments

On New Year’s Eve, we invited a friend over for “Afternoon Tea” (a euphemism for over-indulging on baked goods and sweet treats).

I managed to put together an assortment of pastries from a number of high caloric offerings that had infiltrated our kitchen over the holidays ~> Cherry Squares, Stollen, Brownies, Grandma’s Coffee Cake, Macademia Nut Toffee.

Not wanting anyone to O.D. on sugar, I also put out some raw veggies with garlic herb dip, chips, fresh tomato salsa, and black olives.  (Not exactly a balanced meal, but not quite so lopsided as it looked at first blush.)

The good news:  we managed to make it through the holidays without succumbing to a sugar coma . . . or turning into roly-poly snowmen!

Aah . . . that’s better!

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Simplify. Simplify. Simplify. January 7, 2019

Posted by nrhatch in Happiness, Less IS More, Life Balance, Mindfulness.
22 comments

At the end of one year and the beginning of the next, I review and evaluate what’s “working” and what’s not “earning its keep.”

This year, I realized that my record-keeping has gotten out of hand.

I track too many things in too many different places.

On a regular basis, I’m juggling and updating a To Do list, a Calendar of Events, Travel ideas, Recipes and Meal Plans, a Grocery List, Villa & Auto (repairs and maintenance), Gifts, Charitable Donations, Medical, E-mails, Photos, Notes, Gratitude Basket, Net Worth, Budget/Expenses, Investment Holdings, Taxes, Insurance,  Blog Ideas, Photo Albums, Etc..

It’s too much.

Less is more.

It’s time to re-evaluate the value of each.

Simplify.  Simplify.  Simplify.

Aah . . . that’s better!

New Year’s Resolutions January 1, 2019

Posted by nrhatch in Less IS More, Life Balance, Mindfulness.
20 comments

A recent issue of Lifestyles After 50 focused on resolutions for the New Year.  Here’s a quick summary of a few Lifestyle Changes that pay HUGE dividends.

*Increase your consumption of plant-based meals to improve your health and the health of the planet.

“One study showed that 20 servings of vegetables produce fewer greenhouse grass emissions than one serving of beef.”  

And vegetarian diets are budget friendly too!  Plus they reduce the risk of diabetes, heart disease, obesity, and autoimmune conditions.  If you need ideas, click on Vegetarian Recipes in the drop down menu to the right.

*Cut back on your salt consumption.  Salt looms large in processed foods, including ketchup, soy sauce, canned soups and sauces, crackers, cereal, bread, pancake mix.  Read labels at the grocery store to check the sodium content.  Cooking from scratch at home allows us to monitor what goes into our food and goes a LONG way to keeping our sodium (and caloric) consumption in check.  And beware when eating out . . . most restaurants are a bit too friendly with the salt shaker!

*If health is a priority, set aside time to exercise.  Every day!  Walking, Dancing, Biking, Swimming, and Tennis are all excellent ways to increase endurance and improve cardiovascular health.  Resistance and strength training builds muscles and healthy connective tissue.  Balance exercises help prevent falls & improve posture.  Tai Chi and Yoga are excellent for improving balance.

Walking on land or in the shallow end of a pool increase lower body strength, decreasing the risk of falls.  Stretching exercises (including yoga and pilates) will improve joint mobility and freedom of movement.  Keep moving!

*And while you’re at it ~> keep breathing!

Meditation is a great stress reducer which improves our immune function AND our mental health and outlook on life.  Soon, you’ll find yourself smiling at things that used to annoy . . . OR for no reason at all.

*Declutter!  When it comes to “stuff” . . . less is more!  If you decide to pare your possessions, take it one drawer or closet at a time.  Stop when you have “just enough.”

Aah . . . that’s better!

Clear, Calm, and Focused December 8, 2018

Posted by nrhatch in Happiness, Life Balance, Meditation, Mindfulness.
24 comments

The Why:

The How:

Aah . . . that’s better!

Related:  The Headspace Guide to Mindfulness & Meditation

Find Peace December 5, 2018

Posted by nrhatch in Gratitude, Happiness, Life Balance, Mindfulness.
29 comments

We carry around so many memories, intentions, and concepts in the pockets of the mind.  Keep emptying your pockets.  ~ Mooji, Writing on Water

“Set peace of mind as your highest goal and organize your life around it.” ~ Brian Tracy

When we put peace of mind ahead of all else, we discover the power that lies within. ~ Joseph V. Bailey

Inner peace is the ultimate source of happiness and joyfulness. ~ Dalai Lama

Aah . . . that’s better!

Related post (first image):  Tuesday’s Thoughts (Nuggets of Gold)

A Feathered Frenzy November 21, 2018

Posted by nrhatch in Happiness, Humor, Life Balance, Mindfulness.
18 comments

If you let other drivers ruffle your feathers . . .

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You give them control over your emotional gear shifts . . .

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Keep breathing, shift to Neutral, and go with the flow . . .

IMGP3971

Aah . . . that’s better!

Living Carefree November 1, 2018

Posted by nrhatch in Happiness, Life Balance, Meditation, Mindfulness.
14 comments

This video has been my meditation companion for the past few days.

It’s a terrific antidote to Pointlessly Pondering Poisonous Politics:

Aah . . . that’s better!

You Are The Sky October 25, 2018

Posted by nrhatch in Happiness, Health & Wellness, Life Balance.
16 comments

“You are the sky. Everything else—it’s just the weather.” ~ Pema Chödrön

Aah . . . that’s better!

Related:  It’s OK to Feel Bad for No Reason (Raptitude)

A Bit of This & That October 23, 2018

Posted by nrhatch in Life Balance, Mindfulness, People, Travel & Leisure.
40 comments

For a terrific article on Friendship:

Friends are honest with each other: Friends will always tell you what you need to hear, not what you want them to say. There are plenty of people in the world who will flatter you for their own purposes, but only a real friend — or an enemy — will risk your anger by telling you the truth. And being a good person yourself, you should listen to your friends and welcome what they have to say.

How to be a Good Friend, According to Cicero (an Ancient Philosopher) (Time)

For an interesting article on Master Manipulators:

“People who are trying to manipulate others are trying to control others.”

There are many different forms of manipulation, ranging from a pushy salesperson to an emotionally abusive partner—and some behaviors are easier to spot than others.

Here, experts explain the telltale signs that you could be the subject of manipulation.

How to Tell If Someone Is Manipulating You—And What to Do About It (Time)

For a Bunch of Hot Air, here’s a video posted by my little bro after his recent trip to the Balloon Festival in Albuquerque, NM:

Aah . . . that’s better!

Strategic “Laziness” is a Good Thing! October 20, 2018

Posted by nrhatch in Life Balance, Mindfulness, Travel & Leisure.
26 comments

Next time you’re vegging out on the couch, or relaxing to the strains of Eine Klein Nachtmusik, or watching the clouds scuttle across the sky, reach around and give yourself a pat on the back . . . for being lazy!

That’s right.

Strategic “laziness” is a good thing!

Research shows that doing nothing can be just the boost you need to expand your creativity:

Laziness is a lost art. I don’t mean laziness in the sense of filling each moment with mindless distraction. I mean proper idleness, when we choose to do nothing. In a world of constant distraction, we rarely put our mental feet up. Instead, we spend our spare time bouncing between novel distractions — going from checking our email, to reading the news, to surfing Facebook, and so on — activities that often make us even more tired.

In any given moment, our attention is either focused or unfocused. Focus gets all the attention — it’s what lets us get work done, have meaningful conversations and move our lives forward. But as it turns out, research shows that unfocusing is just as powerful, albeit in different ways. While focusing makes us more productive, unfocusing makes us more creative.

Chances are you should be lazy more often. Whether it’s to give your brain a rest, dig up insightful ideas or plot future plans, sometimes the best way to make stuff happen is by doing nothing at all.

To read more:  Why Being Lazy is Actually Good For You (Time)

Aah . . . that’s better!