F Simple and Serene Living: October 2015 09 10
Wednesday, October 28, 2015


I have a confession to make (okay I know I make a lot of them). I am not a minimalist. Minimalism sounds wonderful. Having more space to breathe. Living with less clutter. Less to pack and move.

It sounds wonderful, but I like a lot of my things and I am terrible at getting rid of it. I have a younger sister who seems to be able to throw away with abandon. She sends me a photo of her desk and I am left wondering where all of the stuff is. Where are the fifty or so pens that I have stuffed in a holder. Where are the glass jars filled with buttons and other paraphernalia that I am sure I am going to use some day. Where is the basket that is overflowing with bits and pieces of paper. Her desk has one lamp on it.

Then it dawns on me. Maybe she is actually able to use her desk. I still seem to be stuck in the teenage mode of working in a chair or on my bed. (Don't tell my mom, she tried to break me of that practice years ago.)

As most of you know, I will be moving to a 550 square foot apartment in a few months and I am working hard at "trying" to purge. It isn't easy, but I have found that if I hold something in my hand and see if it brings me joy it is easier. Some things I know immediately should go. Some things I am iffy about. Some things would have to be wrenched out of my cold, dead hand. 

So that I don't change my mind on the things that I know should go, I immediately take them out to my car and then drop them off at Goodwill. Some of the things I take to my booth where I hope they will sell and bring in a little cash. The things I am iffy about I set aside and pull them back out in a week. Then I go through them again and resort.

I am finding there are a lot of things I can do without. I have come to realize that my things are not relationships. They are inanimate objects. Many of the things that were stuffed in the back of my closet are those things that I was sure I would need some day. The amount of dust on them attests to the fact that I haven't needed them as much as I thought. 

Learning to live with less is just that, a learning process. But who says you can't teach an old dog new tricks. 

Wait, did I just refer to myself as old. NEVER!!!

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P.S. Be sure and check out my post At The Women's Room today. It's all about women and photoshopping.
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Monday, October 26, 2015


Have you ever had a morning that was so horrendously awful you just wanted a do over? This has been one of those mornings and so I thought in order to bring some serenity into the day I needed a little humor.

Thursday night a friend of mine asked me what the highlight of my day had been. I told her it was getting a new bra in the mail from Amazon. She leaned over and told me I needed to get a life.

As soon as they notify me I'll let you know.

Happy Monday.
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Saturday, October 24, 2015


Somehow yesterday slipped by and I didn't write my Friday post. I thought about it. I planned on it. But somehow the day just got away from me. It was the last of our very warm, sunny fall days and I wanted to relish it. If I could have wrapped my arms around it and given it a big hug I would have.

changing leaves fall autumn

Today the rain moved in, and just as the weather and the seasons change, so does life. I remember how my father would say "life is tedious" and yes, it can be very tedious at times. It can be so tiresome that you wonder where to go to say I give. There are times in our lives that we wonder how we will put one foot in front of the other in order to get us past what is happening. 

fall apples old wood bowl

Somehow we do manage to put one foot in front of the other. We plan how to get through the tough times. We move forward and we make changes. One of those changes is that Jen at The Light Laughed and I decided to end our Facebook group. We loved meeting everyone, but it was time to move on. 

Jen has a wonderful new endeavor going. She has launched a new online magazine called Rural, and has just published her first issue. It is nothing short of delicious and you can see it here. I am so happy for her.

I am going to take a more active roll in contributing to At The Women's Room.  It is a place for women. A place where we can hang out and talk about things that affect all of us. Good things and bad things. My heart has always been filled with the love of women's issues and so this is the perfect spot for me. We have some wonderful contributors so I hope you will come over and join us. 

I would love to say that the issues that have been affecting my family are resolved, but unfortunately they aren't. However, I know that each moment that we live is written down in the book of our lives and so it is important to give as much as we can to each day. I am trying to remain flexible with my plans so that I can be where it is best for me and for my family. I know that someday when the last chapter of that book is written, what will have mattered most is the time spent with those that I love and knowing that I have had a life well lived.

So ho hum, yes it is raining today, but I am sitting here with pen and paper taking notes and making plans. 

I hope the rest of your weekend is wonderful.

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Wednesday, October 21, 2015


Last week I trekked over to the pharmacy to get my annual flu shot. Have I ever told you how much I don't like, hate, abhor needles? 

What I hate even more is getting sick with things like the flu, and as I get older I know that the risks from contracting the flu grow. So I try to keep up with the recommendations for adult vaccines. 

Next month I will get the shingles vaccine. There is a waiting period of 30 days between the two shots. After the first of the year I will get the pneumonia vaccine. SIGH!!! 

I hear so many people say that they don't get the shots because they never get sick, but as someone who is the mother of a daughter with a primary immune deficiency I know that it is important for everyone to be immunized.

My daughter, like millions of other people with compromised immune systems cannot get live vaccines. Instead she relies on herd immunity, which is the immunity or resistance to a particular infection that occurs in a group of people when a very high percentage of individuals have been vaccinated or previously exposed to the infection. Much of her immunity comes from the once a week infusions she gives to herself of immune globulin, which comes from blood supplies. This however only gives her partial immunity. If there was no one out there with preventable diseases, she would not have to worry about coming into contact with them.

You can find the CDC recommended immunizations chart for adults here.

I hope you will consider getting the recommended adult vaccines for your age group and health situation. I can't think of anything more serene than living life free of preventable illnesses. 

1) photo source

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Monday, October 19, 2015


All you have to do is open your heart, ask for it, and let it in.

It is really that simple.

So today I am opening up for some awesome. 

How about you? Let's see what happens.
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Friday, October 16, 2015


When you have spent most of your life seeking the approval of others, living a life that you believe needs to be approved by others, or being a rule follower, it can be difficult to break out and be a free spirit.

I have actually been giving this quite a bit of thought lately, and have come to the conclusion that in order to have the life I want I am going to have to break the ties that bind and become more of a free spirit. 

How do we become a free spirit?

1) Is there something you feel passionate about, but haven't had the courage to take action on? Being a free spirit means that you may have to bypass practicality and instead follow your dreams. That may sound scary at times, but in the end it can lead to true satisfaction and happiness.

2) Being a free spirit requires living in the moment. Instead of worrying about what others think of you or what is going to happen tomorrow take time to savor the moment you are in right now. Use all of your senses to enjoy where you are now. This is where meditation can help.

3) Embrace Humor. Have you ever noticed how freeing laughter is? We all get into uncomfortable situations, but free spirits may find themselves in more of those situations.  Look for humor in even the stickiest of situations. Laughter and humor will lighten your load. 

4) Just let go and trust yourself. Trust that you know yourself better than anyone else does. Trust that you know what is best for you. Trust in your own path. 

Do you consider yourself a free spirit or want to become more of one? If so, what are some of the things you are doing?

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P.S. You can find more of the Rewriting Life series here.

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Friday, October 9, 2015


In my last post I talked about embracing the aging process. If you missed that you can read about it here.

One of the things I have noticed about myself and about other women I have talked to is that as we age our values shift.

I can remember a time when material things mattered so much more to me. When I was much more house proud. When I thought I needed the newest car. When I felt I had to keep up. Today, my values have changed.

Today I value things like sincerity, honesty, friendship, and the love of family. I value peace and serenity in my life. 

As we age I believe we settle into ourselves more. That we need less external stimuli. 

Have you felt your values shift as you age? If so, how has this affected the way that you live? 

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P.S. You may have noticed that my posts have been more sporadic lately, and that they are somewhat shorter in length. There are some major issues affecting me and my family right now so I will not be posting as often for the time being. Also, I hope that you will forgive me for not visiting and commenting as often. I value each and every one of you.

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Monday, October 5, 2015


Let's face it, we are all getting older. As I watch my daughters and grandchildren getting older it amazes me how quickly they change, and I see a reflection of my own aging in their faces. 

We so often think of the negative aspects of aging, but there is so much to be positive about. 

There is a freedom that comes with aging. 

We learn that we don't need everyone else's approval in order to live our lives the way we want. We realize that we can dress how we want, think how we want, and make any changes we want without consulting with anyone else. We also may realize that this is the way we should have been living our lives all along. 

It can all be very freeing.

So I say let's embrace the aging process. Let's look at ourselves with love. Let's focus on the positives.

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P.S. This is part of the Rewriting Life series.

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