F Simple and Serene Living: October 2014 09 10
Friday, October 31, 2014

pass the soup please and who has a piece of paper

Today's blog post is brought to you courtesy of a comment I left on Muddy Boot Dreams. Jen was talking about the soup she had cooling on her counter, and I of course asked her to pass me some. I already had my spoon and bowl ready. The fact that she is in British Columbia and I am in Kentucky doesn't seem like an excuse to not share. Her wonderful homemade soup sounded a lot more appealing than the brown rice I had for dinner. One serving of brown rice down, one hundred more to go. You can read more about that here.

Then I was following up on her idea about needing an app for blogging ideas. Personally, I just need a pen and a piece of paper. Neither of which I seem to have when I am out and about and come up with my most brilliant ideas. Of course after a period of five minutes those ideas have gone off into some unknown realm and I am left with the posts that you are forced to read in their place. 

Take yesterday for example, I was sitting in the opthalmologist's office waiting for my eye to dilate (yes, I finally went to see about my eye problem) when I came up with an amazing idea for a post. Don't ask me what it was because it has been way over the five minute window of opportunity for writing it down. I was frantically pulling things out of my purse in search of even a scrap of paper and a writing implement when the lady across from me said, "don't you just hate how we never carry around pens and paper anymore".

As a matter of fact, I do hate it. What is my excuse? I am a blogger. I write on an almost daily basis. I know, I could have put it into my wonderful Iphone6, but someone forgot to charge it up the night before. Lesson learned. Smartphones are not much use when they are dead. 

So, I am making a list. Buy a notepad tomorrow. Uh oh, no notepad to make the list. Do you think I will remember about buying the notepad when tomorrow rolls around? I know, I'll put a reminder in my Iphone. Now what did I do with that darn thing?

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P.S. Today is my sweet Granddaughter Sid's ninth Birthday. I adore that girl and hope she has the best day ever. You can see her sweet face in my profile photo. Your gift should have arrived by now, Sid, all wrapped up with an old quilt top and some twine.

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Thursday, October 30, 2014

transformations: what you can give and still keep

Sometimes it seems like we give and give and all that giving drains us. But there are some things that we can give and keep at the same time. 

So, I think I will keep on giving these, because they make me feel good about myself, and hopefully they make others feel good, too.

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Wednesday, October 29, 2014

what is that in my pantry?...or try not to be envious

I feel really certain that you are going to be more than envious when I tell you that I am spending my day cleaning out my pantry. I was almost afraid to start pulling things out, because who knows what could be lurking in the hidden corners of that closet. 

I mean seriously, how many bags of brown rice does one person need.

It couldn't possibly be because I was too lazy to check my pantry before I went shopping. I really think that those bags just jumped off the shelves and into my cart when my back was turned.

You might have a good idea what I will be eating for the next month. Anyone have any good rice recipes to share with me?

After I threw out everything that expired in the stone age recently I seem to have been left with not only the rice, but a can of beans and a bunch of seeds. 

And what is with all the boxes of plastic bags, aluminum foil, and wax paper?

The only thing they seem to be doing is holding up the toppling old cookers. There might be a concussion in my future if I try to pull one of them out. Maybe I will just leave them as they are. No one will know if I just shut the door, and I know you won't tell.

I'm sure if I keep on digging that I will come across a couple of cans of tuna. Anyone want to join me for a tuna, chia seed, rice casserole? Hmmmm!!! Somehow, I didn't think so.

Enjoy your day.

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P.S. No, there won't be an amazing pantry redo in an upcoming post. I just won't be eating expired food.
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Monday, October 27, 2014

I'm cheering, are you?

Women Speak:

Give me an L...Give me an A...Give me a U... Give me an R... Give me an A... Whatta ya got? LAURA! LAURA! YAAAY!!

In my last post I talked about the importance of being your own biggest cheerleader. If I had a dollar for every time I have said, "you are the best expert on yourself" I would be a wealthy woman. However, if I had to take away a dollar for every time I let someone else influence my decisions, I might just be running a deficit. 

What makes it so easy for us to give away our power, to let someone else have the last say in how we live our lives. I don't know about you, but I need to follow my gut more. I can feel it way down deep in my gut when something is right or wrong for me, and yet I will listen to and act on what someone else says. It is as if I am invalidating my own expertise.

How do we become our own best cheerleaders? 

1) Learn to use powerful words when referring to yourself. Don't be afraid to call yourself an expert. It's okay. 

2) Don't ever speak to yourself in negative terms.

3) Look for what you have done right in similar situations, and then think of ways to improve.

4) Be you own best friend. I've talked about this before. Treat yourself the way you would treat your best friend and the way you want them to treat you. 

Is it okay to ask for other people's input? Of course. We all need a good support system, but we also need to believe enough in ourselves to control our own lives.

So, how do you make decisions about your life. Do you believe in yourself and your own expertise? Let's grab a nice cold drink (It was 82 degrees here) and chat about it. 

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keep cheering

A Snippet of Inspiration

Each Monday is devoted to a snippet of inspiration because a little rain falls in everyone's life.

Yesterday I was having one of those days. You probably know the kind I am talking about. I was doubting myself. I was even angry with myself, and I was angry with everyone else. I forgot one of the most important things.

When I stopped to think, I realized that many of the mistakes I have made in my life are because I didn't listen to my own inner voice. I didn't listen to my gut feeling. I let someone else determine what was best for me. 

I realized that we all need to keep cheering for ourselves.

I hope you will join us tonight and tomorrow for Women Speak when we will talk more about being your own cheerleader. 

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Saturday, October 25, 2014

i've got nothing

Today is just one of those days when I really have nothing to say. Oh, I could tell you about the two auctions I attended the last couple of days. I did buy some things, but I haven't taken photos. My get up and go got up and went down the road somewhere. 

I could regale you with tales of my fabulous day, but seriously there just isn't too much exciting about washing glassware, pricing things for my booth, and spray painting an old picture frame out in the wind. Of course, you know me well. I absolutely did not think to spray in the direction the wind was blowing, so I will be washing paint off me for the next week. At least I gave the neighbors additional fodder for their mealtime conversations. 

Oh wait, wait, wait. Something exciting did happen today. My name finally came up on the waiting list at the library. I quickly donned sunglasses (too lazy to put on makeup) and threw on a cardigan over my mustard stained tee shirt. There was no way I was waiting another day to delve into this.

So, seems like I had a little something to say after all. Have a great day. I'm sure I'll be up until the wee hours reading.

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Friday, October 24, 2014

getting creative

It may be shocking, I know, but occasionally I reach back into the far recesses of my brain and bring out the creative part. For some reason this time of the year seems to bring out that creative gene. 

So I have been digging through my boxes to bring out bits and pieces. Things I have had stored away and forgotten about. You know the kinds of things. Twine, and jute, old tarnished silverware, and rusty old keys. I am looking for creative ways to incorporate them into my creations. 

I have been wanting to make some rag wreaths. This was my first attempt. I was planning to sell it in my booth, but I sold it before it got there. That was nice.

I am now working on another one and on a burlap wreath. I have the base done for both of them, now I just need to embellish.

Somewhere down there in all those boxes I have a large amount of vintage fabric and cutter quilts. If you happen to be looking for me I may be lost in one of my closets, with my head down in a box and my feet sticking straight up. 

I'm envisioning some pretty new pillows for my booth. Time to get to work.

Hope you have a wonderful day.

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Thursday, October 23, 2014

transformations - speak to yourself with kindness

Yesterday I did something which I considered dumb. No, this is one of the few times I won't share it with you. But, what I will share with you is how I felt and how I spoke to myself. 

It was as if the clouds were suddenly descending on me, filling my inside spaces with anger towards myself, and the first thing I said to myself was, "how could you be so dumb".

I felt myself tense up, I felt sick, and that is when I asked myself if I would say this to someone else who made the same mistake. The answer was no. I would tell them it's okay, because we all make mistakes and this is how we learn. 

So I vowed to pay attention to the things I say to myself. I will speak to myself with kindness. I will show myself the same respect that I show others. I will look for that little patch of blue shining from the clouds, and I will focus on that.

Let's all vow to speak to ourselves with kindness, to tell ourselves that we are proud of what we do every day.  

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Tuesday, October 21, 2014

just another day, really

Most days seem pretty much the same. There are of course those ups and downs, those unexpected happenings, those little surprises. But today, so far, has been just another day.

I always start out with a healing meditation before heading to the kitchen to prepare my morning green juice.

I make sure to thank all the beautiful organic produce and roots that will help in giving me a healthy body. 

Then after a bowl of oatmeal and a quick perusal of the newspaper, I carry my cup of tea into my bedroom to start on the days work.

There always seems to be so much to do with never enough time for all of it. Writing my blog, reading all of your wonderful blogs, finding new blog friends (I have set a goal of five new blogs each day), promoting on social media, photographing and listing in my Etsy shop, and the everyday household chores. Once a week I go to my booth to clean, organize, and add new items. Two or three times a week I go to auctions and out thrifting. 

Today I took time for lunch at a neighborhood diner. Good home style cooking with large enough portions that I can bring half of it home for lunch tomorrow.

The leaves are really starting to change here, letting me know that I need to put away the remainder of my cropped pants and bring out the boots and long pants. Time to move with the seasons.

While digging through the coat closet I came across this beautiful hand knit winter hat. 

I won it in a giveaway last spring from the talented Buttons. Please visit her wonderful blog here. I held off sharing it, because we were all into springy things back then and I knew I was going to love pulling it out when the weather turned cooler. If you look closely you will see a photo of her cow, Bossy2, wearing my hat. I'm thinking it might look cuter on her, but I'm not giving it back. 

And now it is time to get down to those little everyday cleaning chores. Okay I might be messy, but I look like Nancy Homemaker compared to this.

So yes, it has been just another day. Enjoy yours.

Sharing With:
Tweak it Tuesday

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Monday, October 20, 2014

are your moods swinging?

Women Speak

I remember when I went through puberty how often my moods changed. One minute I was on top of the world and the next it was as if my life was over. For the next 37 years I noticed that my moods were often governed by my menstrual cycle. Next came menopause, which I liked to refer to as reverse puberty. Now that I am long past menopause I wonder why my moods can't just be rosy all of the time.

If you read my last post you know that I have been feeling moody and uninspired. I know that part of it is my current environment (living in less than an ideal situation away from my children and grandchildren), financial insecurity, and health problems. However, these aren't exactly new problems and so I often wonder why sometimes I cope less well than at other times. 

I know you are probably thinking to yourself, isn't Laura a counselor? Well yes I am, but we counselors have difficulties, too and we often go to see other counselors to help us. So I am going to go and talk about it to another professional, which is what I would advise you to do. Mood changes can be a symptom of other underlying conditions, either mental, physical, or both. They can also be a side effect of certain medications. In my case I think this is part of the problem as my ennui, so to speak, seemed to increase after they upped a medication I take. 

I've noticed, in many of your comments, that there are some of you who also are feeling uninspired and experiencing more depression. There is definitely an increase in depression during the fall and winter. Many people start to feel melancholy when the days shorten. For me as for many others, who suffer with Seasonal Affective Disorder, mid winter is an especially difficult time due to the lack of sunlight. I am aware of this and so I take steps to get more light at that time. 

The bottom line here is to be aware of your moods, don't be afraid to talk about them, and please seek professional help if you find you have new or worsening depression. 

Today I want us to talk about our moods. What do you notice about them? Are your moods changing as you get older? What do you do for yourself when you feel depressed or uninspired?

The nights and mornings sure are cooler, so grab a warm cup of coffee or tea and let's chat.

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keep going

A Snippet of Inspiration

Each Monday is devoted to a snippet of inspiration because a little rain falls in everyone's life.

I wasn't quite sure what I was going to use for inspiration this morning, as I have been feeling quite uninspired. My get up and go seems to have gotten up and gone.

It seemed more like Melancholy Monday, or Moody Monday, or Meditative Monday. Then I reread my first line. A little rain falls in everyone's life, and I am no exception. Often it seems like a torrential downpour, but that is when we all need the inspiration that much more.

So I looked around for a quote that would fit not only how I am feeling at the moment, but that will hopefully provide you with a little inspiration, too.

That's when I came across this.

Perfect, because I don't know about you, but I have no desire to stay where I am.

Hope you have a perfectly inspired day, and don't forget to stop back this evening for Women Speak.

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Friday, October 17, 2014

Best Thing Since Sliced Bread

5 Reasons Why your Business or Blog Needs a WD My Cloud EX2

When I was growing up I remember that anytime something new came out my parents would say it was the best thing since sliced bread.

That brings me back to my post of a few days ago. You may remember that I was hacked and among other things Blogger shut my blog down due to suspicious activity. My first thought of course was "what if I have lost my entire blog" because naturally I didn't have it stored anywhere. 

That is when the technology gods smiled down on me, because almost simultaneously WD, a Western Digital Company, sponsored today's blog post by providing me with a My Cloud EX2 to use and review. 

When they first contacted me I was looking over my shoulder to see if they were talking to someone else. I mean I am not a technology wizard. There are days when I am doing well to tie my shoelaces, but that is the beauty of it. If I can use this then pretty much anyone can and I am thinking that having my own private cloud storage is a really good thing.

Here are some reasons that I personally need the My Cloud and why you might need one too for your home office/personal use.

1) Backing up your blog. There is nothing worse that that terrible feeling of thinking you have lost years of posts with no way to retrieve them. I don't trust backing them up on my computer, which leads into reason number two.

2) Backing up your laptop. My old laptop bit the dust a couple of months ago. Trying to retrieve anything from it is like dragging a ball and chain down an old dusty road in 100 degree weather. What if that is the only place my blog is backed up. I'll be parched and sunburned before I can even find it.

3) Backing up your tablet or phone. My daughter lost her Iphone a couple of weeks ago and along with it went a lot of photos of her precious children. That is heartbreaking for any of us, but My Cloud EX2 has mobile apps for both IOs and Android devices. That brings me to reason number four.

4) Protecting your photos and videos. Like my daughter, I recently lost some of my photos when my old phone died. Yes, I had transferred most of them to my computer. You know, the computer that also bit the dust. So they are in there somewhere but it isn't going to be easy getting them.

5) Less stress and worry. This is probably one of the most important reasons for me. I am definitely into doing things that will lead me away from stress, and the WD My Cloud EX2 will do that for me and my business. I am feeling more serene by the minute. 


MAP is $199.99 USD for the diskless My Cloud EX2.

  • Windows 8.1 or earlier, Windows 7, Windows Vista or Windows XP (32 bit) SP 3 operating systems
  • Mac OS X Mavericks, Mountain Lion, Lion or Snow Leopard operating systems
  • DLNA/UPnP devices for streaming
  • Router with Internet connection
Package Includes
  • Personal cloud storage
  • Ethernet cable
  • AC adapter
  • Quick install guide
  • Assembly kit (included in 0 TB/diskless model)

There is so much more to know about this wonderful product, but I will leave all of the techy stuff to the experts. If you would like to learn more or purchase your own, head on over to the My Cloud EX2 site.

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