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Category: WILLIE AND BAILEY

25 THINGS I LEARNED ABOUT LIFE BY BEING KICKED IN THE BUTT

25 THINGS I LEARNED ABOUT LIFE BY BEING KICKED IN THE BUTT

25 THINGS I LEARNED ABOUT LIFE BY BEING KICKED IN THE BUTT

 

25 THINGS I LEARNED ABOUT LIFE BY BEING KICKED IN THE BUTT
LIFE’S LESSONS LEARNED

 

I don’t know if it’s just me or not, but the only way I seem to learn lessons about life is when I get kicked in the butt by them.  I am spitting distance from 59 years old and I thought that I might pass some of them along now so, that you don’t have to wait for them to kick you in the butt.

LESSON 1.  LIFE ISN’T FAIR, BUT IT’S STILL WORTH LIVING.

– A couple of years ago, I was deep down into the darkness that is depression.  For me, it was like this black hole that I couldn’t get out of.  I couldn’t see the point of getting up or doing anything because this was going to go on forever.  I started wondering what kind of future I’d have and if it was worth hanging around to find out.  

THEN, came the kick in the butt.  I had a friend that had just recently been confined to a wheelchair because she couldn’t walk anymore, it sort of rattled around in my head and made me think about what did I really have to be depressed about.  I at least, could still walk, not far and with a gait that looked more like a drunken sailor in port for the first time in 6 months, but I could.  

So, I needed a cane, at least I wasn’t permanently in a wheelchair, I kind of gave myself a slap upside of the head and learned the lesson life was trying to teach me.  There is always someone much worse off than you.  Live your life, that’s what it’s for.  Don’t let darkness rob you of the joy that is out there if you look for it.

OK, OK, I promise the rest of them won’t be that long.   

I do have a tendency to ramble, don’t I?  LOL

LESSON 2.  DON’T LET YOUR PAST INFLUENCE OR DETERMINE YOUR FUTURE

A Lesson we all need to learn at some point. See it for what it is right now, don’t wait and let it kick you in the butt.

LESSON 3.  DON’T COMPARE YOURSELF TO OTHERS IN ANY FACET OF YOUR LIFE.  

Their journey has been completely different from yours.  Live your life, not someone else’s.

LESSON 4.  DON’T SAVE ANYTHING FOR A SPECIAL OCCASION

Every day is special, so use your china and the good linens.  Use anything and everything you have, if you only use it once or twice a year why have it?

LESSON 5.  YOU KNOW THE OLD ADAGE “WHAT DOESN’T KILL YOU MAKES YOU STRONGER” IT REALLY IS TRUE.

LESSON 6.  KINDNESS IS THE GREATEST GIFT, GIVE IT OFTEN.

 

KINDNESS IS THE GREATEST GIFT, GIVE IT OFTEN
KINDNESS IS THE GREATEST GIFT, GIVE IT OFTEN

 

LESSON 7.  LOVE WITH EVERYTHING YOU HAVE, YOU MIGHT GET HURT, BUT EVERY DAMN DAY WILL HAVE BEEN WORTH IT.

LESSON 8.  HAPPINESS DOES NOT DERIVE FROM OUTSIDE SOURCES, IT BEGINS IN YOU.

There are people all over the world looking for something to make them happy.  It only happens in you, and you are the only one that can make it happen for you.

LESSON 9.  IF PEOPLE THINK YOU’RE CRAZY, LET THEM, AND ENJOY YOURSELF ANYWAY.

Have you heard the old saying that “Life isn’t about getting caught out in the storm, it’s about learning to dance in the rain.”?  So what if they think you’re crazy, do it anyway.

LESSON 10.  THE DEFINITION OF LIFE IS CHANGE, WELCOME IT, DON’T FEAR IT.

LESSON 11.  DO NOT BELIEVE THAT LIFE WILL ALWAYS GO YOU’RE WAY, THE BAD STUFF HAS A WAY OF SNEAKING UP ON YOU.

LESSON 12.  THE BAD STUFF DOESN’T LAST FOREVER, JUST KEEP MOVING FORWARD AND SOON IT WILL BE LEFT BEHIND.

LESSON 13.  REMEMBER LIFE IS FULL OF LITTLE MOMENTS, TAKE THE TIME TO NOTICE THEM AND REMEMBER THEM.

If you are too busy to notice the little moments; when you are old and grey and sitting in that rocking chair what will your life have been about?  The amount of work you managed to do?  Think on that one for a while, it’ll come to you.

LESSON 14.  TAKE THE TIME TO LISTEN TO YOUR CHILDREN, NOT JUST WHEN YOU’RE IN THE ROOM, BUT ESPECIALLY WHEN YOU ARE NOT.

It will tell you how you are doing as a parent.  Children are little mirrors, they reflect what they see.  What are your’s reflecting?

LESSON 15.  THE SAYING THAT “PEOPLE MIGHT NOT REMEMBER WHAT YOU SAID, BUT THEY WILL ALWAYS REMEMBER HOW YOU MADE THEM FEEL” HOLDS MORE TRUE FOR YOUR CHILDREN THAN ANY ONE ELSE.

The everyday stuff won’t be remembered entirely by your children, but the feeling that they got from you every day will be.  Be there and Love them with all your heart.

LESSON 16.  BEING WRONG IS OK, IF YOU TRIED YOUR BEST, AND IF YOU ADMIT IT.  NOBODY’S PERFECT.

LESSON 17.  EVERY DAY TAKE 10 MINUTES AND SIT OUTSIDE.  RAIN, SUN, SNOW, OR COLD, DOESN’T MATTER.  CLOSE YOUR EYES  AND LISTEN.

There is something magical about doing this every day.  In the City you can hear the hum of the cars on the roadways, you can hear the sounds of people interacting, the screech of breaks and the sirens of the services as they rush to protect or attend you.  

If you are not in the city, but out in the suburbs or countryside, hear the wind in the leaves, the sounds of the birds in the trees, the hum of insects, and the distant sounds around your area.  

If it’s raining, hear the sound of the rain hitting the pavement, or hitting the leaves, hear it dancing along the roadway or the fence, and if you watch at that time, you will see that as the rain hits the water on the road, it looks like fairies dancing.   

If it’s snowing, listen to the quiet, how everything has a sound of being muffled.    

Take a couple of deep breaths and let peace fill your soul.  

If it’s a raging blizzard then what the hell are you doing outside, are you nuts? LOL.

LESSON 18.  DON’T LET DEAD WEIGHT DRAG YOU DOWN, TOXIC PEOPLE ONLY SERVE THEMSELVES.

LESSON 19.  THERE IS ALWAYS SUNSHINE COMING, MAYBE NOT TODAY OR TOMORROW, BUT IT IS ON IT’S WAY.  LOOK TOWARDS THE GOOD.

LESSON 20.  TAKE THAT LEAP, LIFE IS FOR LIVING.  JUST JUMP!

LIFE IS FOR LIVING, JUST JUMP
TAKE THAT LEAP

 

LESSON 21.  PAY ATTENTION TO YOUR FINANCES.

LESSON 22.  EAT HEALTHY WHEN YOU CAN, BUT DON’T MISS OUT ON THE GOOD STUFF.

Looking like a 20-year-old in a bikini may be nice, but this too shall pass.  Everybody Ages. So enjoy the good stuff when you can and eat healthy the rest of the time.

LESSON 23.  BE YOURSELF, LIFE IS TOO SHORT TO BE IMITATING SOMEONE ELSE.

LESSON 24.  YOUR CHILDREN HAVE LESSONS TO TEACH YOU, WATCH AND LEARN.

They can teach you how to just let go and have fun, stop worrying about what the neighbours might think, just go for it.  They can also teach you about taking chances, the child who is drawing doesn’t care if it’s not perfect, they are just enjoying it.  The Lesson is life doesn’t have to be perfect, just enjoy it.

LESSON 25.  I HAVE SEEN THIS A COUPLE OF TIMES ON PINTEREST AND I HAVE ADDED IT TO MY LESSONS LEARNED.

Be the person that when your feet hit the ground in the morning, the Devil says “Oh Sh*t, She’s/He’s up.”  Take charge, be strong, look out for others, and never take crap from anyone. 

 

THINGS I LOVE, USE, OR MAKE 

My favourite thing at this time of year is to just take a few minutes each day and watch the play of light on the leaves of the trees and bushes around my backyard.  Today, I am not giving you a long post, I am giving you a series of pictures so that you too can enjoy the light and shadow that plays out on the leaves.

 

Light and Shadow on the ground
Light and Shadow on the ground

 

Light and Shadow in the bushes
Light and Shadow in the bushes

 

Light and Shadow in the Trees
Light and Shadow in the Trees

 

This next item that you see, I couldn’t resist.  You will see the light and shadow on the ground, but it’s really just a video of my fur babies Willie & Bailey.

 

 

 

QUOTE OF THE WEEK

This week we have another quote from Brene Brown.  Of all the personal development books I have read, Brene Brown’s has had the most lasting impression.  She has multiple books out and all of them are great.  I just got finished the Audible version of  The Gifts of Imperfection, and I am still working on processing everything she said.  If you want a damn good read or a great audio book grab any one of Brene’s Books, you won’t be disappointed.

 

“AUTHENTICITY IS THE DAILY PRACTICE OF LETTING GO OF WHO WE THINK WE’RE SUPPOSED TO BE, AND EMBRACING WHO WE ARE.”

 

It kind of works with today’s post, don’t you think?  Be your Authentic Self.

 

 

FAMILY LIFE 

 

This week I just wanted to touch a little bit on how being a chronic illness family impacts on the other members of the household.  I have not talked to my children about how they feel about my illness, not really, it has just been a given for the last four years.  

I suppose that is entirely selfish and thoughtless of me, but they have had my back from day one so I never thought about how they feel about it.  I know that I have told you that all I have to do is ask and my kids jump to help, but I have never thought to ask how inconvenient or how having to watch me struggle some days makes them feel.  

I guess that is a conversation that is going to have to happen, and I am not going to be asking them for their typical pat answer, I really want to know what impact my illness has had on them.  I think I’m scared to find out.

I have had the conversation with my husband of course.   

In fact, we did this online quiz once about how each of us writes down five words on how we feel about or see me ( or the one who is ill).  

My words went like this:  Guilty, Scared, Weak, Failing, and a Disappointment.  

Hawkeye’s words made me cry, he chose:  Brave, Strong, Fighter, Loving, and Beautiful.  

I still have them written down in my journal and I look at them every single day, to remind me to live up to what he believes me to be.  

I hope your support is as strong.

 

 

RECIPE OF THE WEEK 

 

I found a new site for recipes that I love.  Well, it’s new to me, some of you may have heard of it already.  It’s called Creme De La Crumb and can be found at https://www.lecremedelacrumb

It has great quick and easy recipes.  The ones I like best are the 30-minute meals, but I like some of the crock pot recipes too.  Actually, I haven’t found anything that I don’t like.  The following were my lineup for this week.   

Sunday:  One Pan Spanish Chicken and Rice    

Monday:  Meatless Monday – One Pot Creamy Tuscan Garlic Spaghetti   

Tuesday:  One Pot Enchilada Orzo – I’m going to add ground beef to this one.  My husband puts up with one Meatless night per week because I asked him to.   

Wednesday:  One Pan Brown Sugar Pork & Apples – I’m going to replace the pork tenderloin with sausages.   

Thursday:  Slow Cooker Smoky Mountain Chicken   

Friday:  Hawaiian Hamburger Steaks   

Saturday:  One Sheet Pan Chicken Fried Rice   

As you can see I love one pan or pot meals, the fewer dishes I use the better I like it.  This site has loads of them in different categories.  I am not an affiliate for the site or anything like that, I just love the recipes.  Have a look, I am sure you will like them too.  

Well that’s it for this week, everyone, I would love to hear anything that you have to add to my list of Lessons Learned and if you try the recipes, let me know what you tried and how you liked it.  

There are two ways to let me know what you think, either through the comments or the contact me page. Just drop me a line and let me know what you think.

 

Take care and have a great week.

 

 

 

 

 

THE INVISIBLE ILLNESS LISTENING POST

THE INVISIBLE ILLNESS LISTENING POST

  

Last week I started my new business, opened the doors on what I’m calling a place where you can find a safe and friendly ear for those with Chronic Illness. Someone to really hear you and someone who understands completely what you go through.

THE INVISIBLE ILLNESS LISTENING POST
THE INVISIBLE ILLNESS LISTENING POST

If you have been a reader of mine for a while you know what I have been through.   I guess Hell would be a good word for it. I am now and have been for the last 4 years in full on Fibro flare, I have to make it through every day with unbearable pain and pretend just like you do to put a smile on my face.

People with Invisible illnesses like Fibromyalgia, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, or Lupus, not to mention all the others, have at one time or another felt alone and unheard and invisible. 

Some days there is nothing on our minds but the pain. Some days we are so tired that just getting out of bed becomes an obstacle. Sometimes we want to rant and rave and shake our fists at the sky and scream WHY ME!   Some days we just want to cry, some days we just want to be angry, some days we don’t want to speak at all.

WHAT I FIND COMMON TO ALL OF US WITH CHRONIC ILLNESS

None of us with Chronic Illness wants to be putting this on our families, the last thing they need after having to take care of us is to hear us whining and complaining.

We are not selfish, we are not there to drag anybody else down, but it would be hard for anyone to live this way and not have those days where you feel like you’re in the blackest pit of Hell.

Anxiety, fear, and depression are all common with people who have a Chronic Illness, and we don’t want to pile that up on others.

So I decided that I would start a business where anyone could come and be heard, now don’t get me wrong I am not a Therapist, I am not a Psychiatrist, I am not a Consultant or a Coach or any of the other things that people with training are, if you need that kind of help, then please go and seek out someone you can talk to in those fields.  

All I have is my compassion, my awareness of the fears that sit in your soul and my willingness to be able to help anyone who might be in the same position.  

I want to be able to help the newly diagnosed, or those who thought they had it down and then something threw a spanner (sorry, my British upbringing is showing, I meant wrench) in the works, to find the positive in every day.

Negative thoughts steal our time, steal our ability to interact with others, but most of all it steals our ability to be ourselves.  

It is my goal to always help people to see the best in life, to see the positive; because we see so much of the darker part of life with Chronic Illness.

 

WHY I THINK I CAN HELP OTHERS 

 My diagnosis with Fibromyalgia came 15 years ago, and 4 years ago I started having more problems and was thrown into a permanent flare, eventually I discovered after talking with a Psychiatrist that I had Conversion Disorder.

Conversion Disorder is a problem with my brain, what happens is, my legs give out without warning, both my arms and my hands also give out without warning, I lose the sight in my left eye and the hearing in my left ear, and my face goes numb.  

My whole body goes numb on the outside if I stand, sit or lie down for too long at a time, but inside it feels like there’s a raging fire burning all along my nerves and every part of me, 24/7/365.

Now like I said if you have been a reader of mine you already know all this and you don’t need me to explain again what I go through and what I know you fellow sufferers go through. 

I just wanted to tell you I am here offering my services to be the kind of person that you can depend on to be there when you need a hand dealing with the feelings of anger and guilt that those of us with a Chronic Illness go through.

I’ve been told many times that my heart is going to get me into trouble and it possibly might; but, how could I live with myself knowing that I could help someone begin their journey with a Chronic Illness.  

Help them through the times that are to come, because regardless of what you are told when they say that it doesn’t get worse, THEY LIE.  Each year from the time I was diagnosed it got progressively worse until that time four years ago when my brain apparently decided to take a left turn and throw me into full on Flare.

 

A LITTLE BIT MORE OF MY LIFE

I have a support system that you wouldn’t believe, every day it becomes a little bit more evident that I will not be able to do everything that I want to do, and some days I am in so much pain and I am so unable to do the things that Moms and Wives and Owners of puppies are supposed to do that my husband has to take over.  

He takes the dogs for a walk and does the cooking for me.  He never complains he just picks up the reins and he keeps on going, and he has his own problems too. He will get a meal on the table, he does almost all of the grocery shopping, he does almost all of the laundry, and he helps out in the house when I need it and I need it a lot.  

I can never say thank you to him enough for being there for me every step of the way from diagnosis to today.  I’m still seeing a psychiatrist and hoping at some point that I don’t have to worry about my legs and my arms and my eyes and my ears anymore.

Even if the Conversion Disorder gets dealt with and is gone; I know I’ll still have Fibro, but I also know that no matter what my kids and my husband they are always there for me.

I deal with all the same things you do, overwhelm, pain, Fibro fog, fear, anxiety, and guilt; I know that there are times when we would all just like to shut down for a while and not feel, not think, and not care about anything else at all.  That is why I started this business, so you would always have somewhere to turn.

 

 WHERE MY BUSINESS IS GOING 

I eventually would like to start a podcast where I could have people on from different types of illnesses to let anyone who is out there know what to expect.  

Have experts in different illnesses come and explain what is happening in our bodies and if there is anything we can do about it.  

Nutritionists who can recommend particular foods that affect our illnesses.  

And various other experts to give us information on how better to set ourselves up for good days, and let us know if breakthroughs are imminent for any of us.

 For now, I think more than anything I just want to be able to let you know that there is still joy in life, that you still can be happy, that you can still have the life that you want, you just have to make it a little slower, a little less time-consuming, and that self-care will become a mandatory past time for you.

Don’t ever think that you have to go this alone because you don’t. There are all sorts of Facebook groups and groups on Instagram, I’m not sure about Twitter but I know about the other two because I am a part of them.

TO GET IN TOUCH WITH ME  

You never have to be alone with this Illness or the feelings that come with it, and if you feel that you are alone and that nobody understands then contact me, I want to help with that more than I can tell you; because I don’t believe anybody should be without someone on their side.

To reach me you can come here and hit the ‘Work with Me’ button and it will take you to my HOME page, and if I can help you or you think that I can give you some information you don’t have, then go to the Contact Me page and let me know what you are looking for from me.

If you just want to go straight there, it can be reached at https://barbsturrock.com

THE LAST THING 

I have one more thing to tell you about and that is the Services page that I had up for a little while.  Before I opened the business, I started playing around with a Services page, everyone I had talked to and all the courses that I took told me that I had to price myself high or I would not get any engagement.  

So, I wrote out a page and listed what I hoped I’d be able to do for you and then gave you the prices down below that info.  

I looked at and read it and didn’t like it.  I tried again and again and again, but all three times I didn’t like how it sounded,  I didn’t know what it was that was driving me crazy about it, I reread and reread and then it started to hit me, I didn’t like that I was charging people at all, I really wanted to do this to help those around me.  

 I decided to scrap the Services page until I could decide what I wanted to do, but in the meantime, I would start up and see if there was any interest.  

What I didn’t realise is that the last Services page I had worked on was posted at the same time as I opened up for business. 

It wasn’t until five days later that I realised that the page had posted.  I had gone in every day to have a look and see if there were any comments, but I didn’t go to the actual post itself until the fifth day when I realised to my horror that the awful Services page had posted as well. 

I quickly removed it and then did up a video on Facebook to apologise to any potential clients,  I was trying so hard not to cry.  I felt so bad, I felt like I had let you all down, but it was then as I was so upset that the perfect idea came to me.  I would make it by donation, so then no one would feel like they were left out because they didn’t have the money. 

I really was so upset that I knew that I shouldn’t just jump into the donation thing, so I decided to wait until I had calmed down and then I could really think about the decision.  Well, I thought about it and talked with my husband about it and he said that I should go for it.  

If the people who needed help could find me, they wouldn’t be charged an arm and a leg to get someone to talk to.

So, Sunday I added ‘Payment by Donation’ to the bottom of the HOME page.

I know that I have rambled on as usual, but, I really wanted you to know that I was sorry for letting you down and I will try not to do it again.

 

 

THINGS I LOVE, USE, OR MAKE 

Today I want to tell you about a Service that helps me to stay on top of things and keeps me organised and on track.  It is a productivity marvel and if you haven’t tried it, you should do it today.

The service is called Trello, and you can use it for free, but for just a small fee you can sign up for the Trello Gold which opens all the features and let me tell you what a difference it has made for me.

I used to and still do use a paper planner, but I am not always good about putting down the things that I need to keep track of.  With Trello, I have it on my phone so when I am away from my planners, I can make sure I don’t miss anything.  You can see a copy of one of my boards below.

Trello Board
My Week – Personal Board

This one is for my personal life, but I have one for my Business week, my Editorial Calendar, my Projects, my Notes, my To-do List, and a bunch of others that help me with my blog and now with my business too.

What you can see is what they call a board, and each of the days that you see there, are called lists.  Then the little white boxes with the information in them are called cards.  The cards can be dated, and they can be tagged, as the one on Thursday is tagged with a red line.

You get to choose what you name the tags for each board, not only that but you can have a calendar that you can click on to get everything coming up for you, as I do here in the right-hand corner.

You also get to pick the background that you want, I chose this one because it reminds me of a place I used to go fishing.

If you want to try Trello, or if you already tried it and you think its too hard, then I suggest that you go to Think Creative Collective and get their course ‘Trello For Business’, it’s only $29.00 US and it teaches you everything you need to know about Trello, plus they give you some of their boards that you can use and adapt to fit yourself.

No, I am not an affiliate for them, I just loved the course and I love using Trello.  It has made such a difference in my life, I have everything in one place and I can access it from anywhere via my phone, and I always keep it open on my laptop so I can access it at any time.

Now, go get yourself a Trello account, like I said before, you can use the free one, and check out the features and how easy it is to stay up to date.  I bet you will love it once you know how to use it.

 

 

QUOTE OF THE WEEK

 

“THE SAME BOILING WATER THAT SOFTENS THE POTATO, HARDENS THE EGG.  IT’S ABOUT WHAT YOU’RE MADE OF, NOT THE CIRCUMSTANCES.”

UNKNOWN

People always underestimate the stamina and strength of the Chronically Ill. They do not understand what strength it takes just to get through every day, and the stamina to keep doing it.  

Be proud of yourselves, Warriors of the CI World, you are amazing and you are strong, and you are perfect just the way you are.

WE ARE THE EGGS, LOOK OUT POTATOES!

 

 

FAMILY LIFE 

The past couple of weeks have been crazy, starting up the business, finding out about my error, reviewing everything to make sure that I was doing this for the right reasons, and still juggling family life.

Willie and Bailey, now that summer seems to have arrived are ready to go at the drop of a hat.  They want to run and fight (playing) and roll around in the grass and just lie down and soak up the sun.

With the exception of this past weekend when it was really hot 31′ C, (I know that might not seem much to other people but here on the West Coast of Canada, that is freaking hot) the dogs are literally raring to go every minute.

I feel bad for our next door neighbour, (remember we are in a townhouse) because the dogs sound like a heard of elephants running up and down the stairs, chasing each other.  Willie always loses because Bailey is like a little missile, speedy in the extreme.

When they are not doing that, they are downstairs with me in the office, barking at every bird they see.  I swear they both want to fly.

As for the family, well Mr. T is still going to physio 3 times a week, Miss Muffet is never home, so Hawkeye and I usually have the peace and quiet that we both crave, until dinner time that is, when the noise level and the hoards (Dogs & Kids) descend upon us.

I know it will get busier as the wedding gets closer, so we are soaking up the quiet as much as we can, enjoying taking the fur babies out for a walk every night, and just loving the sunshine for the rest of the day.

I hope it is sunny and warm where you are.

 

 

RECIPE OF THE WEEK

The weather has been very warm, so most of our cooking has been on top of the stove or on the BBQ.  This one is done on top of the stove and can be on the table in 15 minutes.  It is simple and quick, so easy to put together, and it doesn’t heat up the kitchen much.

PASTA WITH CLAM SAUCE

LINGUINE WITH CLAM SAUCE
LINGUINE WITH CLAM SAUCE NOT –  MY PHONE DIED RIGHT BEFORE I WAS TO PLATE UP, THIS IS THE CLOSEST THING I COULD FIND ON SNAPPA

 

Click on the link below to get the recipe.

https://barbsoutlook.com/?post_type=recipe&p=7525&preview=true

 

 

HOW TO COPE WITH THE CRAP IN EVERYDAY LIFE, DAYDREAM!

HOW TO COPE WITH THE CRAP IN EVERYDAY LIFE, DAYDREAM!

 DAYDREAMS

 

We all have them; they are like mini vacations for our brains when they are overloaded.  They can also be useful for working sh*t out; we use them when we worry, when we tire; when we are bored, or scared or inattentive.

Did you know, I didn’t, but I think it’s interesting, that you have less and less of them as you get older, and the reason for that appears to be because as we get older, the way to deal with unpleasant things is something that we have a strategy for?  Young people are more likely to daydream about worrying situations, us old guys (sorry), we use daydreams to take us out of a situation when we need a little time away from everyday life.

MY DAYDREAMS 

For myself, I deliberately use them to help with the pain, as you know I am always in flare, so every day I take a little time away in my head, it helps me cope.  Sometimes it’s a couple of minutes; sometimes it’s up to half an hour.  I go to an imaginary place in my mind where it is always summer, and I am sitting on the dock of a cabin beside a lake, I can hear the birds singing, the leaves rustling in the wind, even boats going by on the other side of the lake.  It’s peaceful, and there is no pain there.

I often wonder if others with chronic illness do the same thing, do you get away from your body for a little bit every day?

DAYDREAMS HELP PREPARE FOR SCARY THINGS 

At my age now, there is not much that worries me, my husband having prostate cancer, my son getting married, those are the kind of things that pick at my brain.  

I remember the very first time I was going to have to get up in front of people and make a short speech; I went over it and over it in my mind; deliberately imagining the worst that could happen.  For example, you stand up to speak, and nothing but gibberish comes out of your mouth, and everyone is looking at you with their heads’ cocked like a dog’s wondering what the hell I am saying; or I stand up open my mouth, and nothing comes out. 

I tried very hard to imagine every possibility except the one that actually happened.  I stood up and went completely blank, I had no idea why I was there, what I as talking about, absolutely blank; then I started laughing and told everyone what had happened, they all laughed along with me, not at me, and then the whole thing came flooding back, and we carried on.

INTERESTING FACTS ABOUT DAYDREAMING 

  • You are neither asleep nor awake when you daydream, you are in a place where you are not aware of things around you, but if you had to come to attention quickly you could.
  • Sigmund Freud used to deliberately dream about a naked Greta Garbo riding on a horse.  I wonder if he ever psychoanalysed himself.  Hmmmmm.
  • Daydreaming is a right brain thing, according to neuroscientists what happens is that you are using your left brain for some kind of work that is not stimulating, so your right brain takes over and gives you a vision of something more entertaining to focus on.
  • Athletes, Musicians, and Business leaders deliberately use it to envision positive outcomes for their efforts.  We have all heard of the system of visualising what you want, see it happening, and voila` it happens, turns out that this is a form of daydreaming but used deliberately, kind of like my lakeside getaway.
  • Those few moments that you are somewhere else can relieve stress, improve mindset, foster creativity and refreshes the body, mind, and spirit.
  • Daydreaming may give you access to areas of your brain that retain information, so that when you ‘wake’ you may have come up with some magical insight into a problem or creatively come up with a way of solving a problem.
  • The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines it as a “pleasant visionary, usually wishful creation of the imagination”.  By that definition, it appears that daydreaming is proving to be a lot like the mini vacation I mentioned at the outset.
  • Dr Muireann Irish, Neuroscientist, said “DAYDREAMING IS HARD WORK AND SERVES SOME VERY IMPORTANT FUNCTIONS. THE CAPACITY TO REMEMBER THE PAST AND IMAGINE THE FUTURE  IS A VERY COMPLEX FORM OF THINKING”
  • It’s noted that daydreaming improves performance and productivity, and is thought to be a sign of an active and healthy brain.  It seems to be a good indication of the brain’s ability to retain and recall information in the face of distractions, or as they say ‘working memory.’

 

DAYDREAMING AND CHRONIC ILLNESS

I searched and searched for anything that there might be on using daydreaming to; or if daydreaming helps with coping with the pain and other symptoms of chronic illness.  There was no literature that I could find on the benefits of it, but there were articles on how it can be bad for you.  

They call it Maladaptive Daydreaming, it is where you get so into the daydreaming you can’t, or somehow you forget to, or you choose not to return to real life.  This becomes a disorder all its own, let’s not do that.

I use it when my left eye goes blind, when all of a sudden my arms aren’t working, or when the fibro fog gets so bad that just thinking becomes impossible.

 

HOW TO DAYDREAM DELIBERATELY

If you have never done it deliberately, let me give you a couple of pointers.  The first time or the second time you try it may not work, but keep at it day after day and eventually, you will be at the lakeside cabin or a beach in the Caribbean, or a chalet in the Swiss Alps, whatever peace is for you.

Build it slowly in your mind, make sure you include everything that would make you feel calm and worry free.  If you are on the beach, hear the waves falling on the beach, the seabirds crying about the fish that got away.  Or, if the Swiss Chalet is your idea of peace, smell the wood from the fire, hear the wind blowing the snow against the windows. Every day add a little bit more until it is the perfect place for you.  

Even if you can only get there a couple of times a week, it seems to help with getting through the tough days.  Those days when you are curled up in a ball because the pain is so bad, go to your peaceful place, and the pain doesn’t follow, it may only be a brief respite, but at least it’s something.

Daydream deliberately, it is the only way that I know of to get away from the pain; and I know that some days nothing will help, but give it a try.  Just don’t forget to come back.

 

 

THINGS I LOVE, USE, MAKE 

Today’s little nugget of goodness is an online shopping site called Zulily.  I love and use it at least a couple of times a week, who am I kidding, I go there every day to see what’s new.  You sign up, and then every morning they send you an email with what’s new on the site.

At this time of year, they always seem to have sales on things that I admired back in the fall as well as things for spring and summer.  Yesterday, I picked up three tops, one for $6.99 and the other two for $9.99, now these were tops that went for over $50.00 each back in the fall, so I just indicated I liked them by highlighting the little heart; and every time they come back around I get a notification that something I liked will be on tomorrow’s New Today list.

Now, you have to be careful, because they only have so many in each of the sizes and they are only there for a set amount of time, but if you pay attention to the prices when you see them originally, and they bring them back around at sale time you can get a pretty good deal.  These items are all discounted anyway, and then they go on sale.

You can get things like Michael Kors purses, or Kate Spade.  Ray Bans that are still ridiculously expensive even with a discount, but there are knock-offs that are very similar.  Coach stuff, and Jessica Simpson clothing and accessories, there are shoes and stuff for kids and babies. Some of it is just crazy expensive, but others are a really good deal.

My latest purchases, were sheet sets, 700 thread count and I got them for 29.99 for a queen set, I bought three, then I saw a comforter set that was lovely, and I got it for less than $30.  Believe me; they have everything from things for your pets, to curtains for the windows, home decor and storage, to bathing suits and jewellery and every now and then they have stuff for the office or planners.  Honestly, you could go crazy on this site.

I just went on the site a few minutes ago to see if I could find any particular deals, and what I found was a high-end clothing line for kids clothes that are on up to 75% off.  The page that I looked at they had a little boys outfit, probably for between 1 -2 years old, regularly $91.00 for $16.99, and a little girl’s really pretty party dress that was regularly $102.00 for $19.99

So, go and have a look at Zulily.com, you might be surprised at what you find. And no, I have no affiliation with them, I just love the site.

 

QUOTE OF THE WEEK

 

Whether you’re experiencing an episode of depression in this season or it has been an ongoing battle, here are 11 quotes to encourage your spirit.

 

I love Pinterest; they always have something that touches me in some way.  I thought this one went along well with the Daydreams post.  As usual, though, there is no mention of the author, so I will just say that I am grateful that someone put pen to paper for this one.

Be proud of who you are and what you can offer the world because don’t forget even if like me you don’t get out much; you still have a voice that can be heard if you want it to be.

Fairy Garden update, had no time at all on the project this week.  I’m taking too many courses right now, and they are all taking up my time.  But, in the end, it will be worth it, I hope because I will be able to talk to you much easier and give you so much more than I have until now.

 

FAMILY LIFE or THE WILLIE AND BAILEY PART OF THE BLOG.

Do you ever wonder if there’s someone in your house that you don’t know about, and he, she, or it spends an awful lot of time screwing around with things?   Like your favourite coffee mug is not in the cupboard, it is now located in the pot drawer, or the sweater you were planning on wearing and that should have been in your closet is somehow in the basement with a dog lying on it; weird things that happen and there is no reason for it.

No, I’m not talking about a ghost, I’m talking about Mr I Don’t Know.  My kids are adults now but Mr I Don’t Know still shows up almost every day.   He plays with our minds and tricks us into believing we are losing ours because you know as well as I do if I ask ‘who dunnit’ (had to, lol) then the answer will always be I don’t know.

Mr I Don’t Know has lived in my house since my kids learned to speak, funny how that happened.  I always assumed (and yes we know what that means) that he would move to somebody else’s house when the kids got old enough.  I’m just not sure now, what’s old enough.

Willie and Bailey have been their usual selves, running around the house, sounding like elephants on the stairs (how is that possible for two such small dogs) and ripping apart anything that has even the slightest stuffing.  I use to hope that when Bailey came, she would be a good influence on Willie and things wouldn’t be unstuffed anymore, I should have known better.

Well here are some new pictures of the little darlings:

Daydreams - Bailey on the run
Bailey on the Run

 

Daydreams - Willie and Bailey in the sun
Willie and Bailey enjoying the sunny day

 

Daydreams - Willie & Bailey with Mummy's Cane
They never look at you at the same time, no matter how hard I try

 

 

 

RECIPE OF THE WEEK

 

CARAMEL APPLES WITH PORK STEAKS,

STEAMED BROCCOLI & FLUFFY RICE 

Caramel Apples with Pork Steaks

 

Daydreams - Recipe - Caramel Apples with Pork Steaks
Ready to Eat – Caramel Apples with Pork Steaks, Steamed Broccoli, and Rice. Oh, can’t forget the Caramel Sauce!

 

YUMMMM!

 

OK, that about does it for this week.  Just a reminder to take care of you, have fun, laugh alot, and take time to be grateful for the life you have even if it isn’t the one you wanted.

By the way,  for those of you who signed up last week, I’m so sorry, I have screwed up, I didn’t link everything together properly, so you did not get your download, if you send me an email to Barb@barbsoutlook.com, I’ll make sure that the copy gets sent through.

If you didn’t sign up, then why not do so now and get “HOW TO CREATE A CLEANING SCHEDULE THAT WORKS FOR YOU”  free.

Have a great week and a terrific weekend, Happy Mother’s Day to all of you, whether it is fur babies or real ones.

Bye for now.

I KNOW A SUPERWOMAN – BUT I SO DO NOT WANT TO BE HER

I KNOW A SUPERWOMAN – BUT I SO DO NOT WANT TO BE HER

I know a woman who to my mind at least, is a Superwoman.  She works full-time, she blogs three days a week, keeps her house spotless, herself perfectly groomed, her family fed and looked after, and she hates how busy she is.

Her day starts at 4:30 am, she gets up, wakes her husband then heads to the kitchen to make his breakfast and his lunch.  Irons a shirt for him every day because he prefers how they feel when freshly ironed.  She takes care of him until 5:30 when he leaves to go to work.

From 5:30 – 7 am, she exercises, showers, completes one chore and then makes breakfast and lunches for her two adult male children.  Oh, I forgot, she puts in one load of laundry.

She wakes the boys at 7 am and then heads downstairs to throw the laundry into the drier.  She then sits down with her boys and has breakfast.

Does the breakfast dishes, then drops both boys at the bus stop by 8 am so they can get to work by 8:30.

FOR SUPERWOMAN IT IS TIME TO WORK 

She also starts work at 8:30, but is always there early as it is her business.  Her employees begin at 9 am, by that time she has dealt with her email, made at least two phone calls, and prepped what she wants her employees to work on.

She then reviews all of the information about her first client before they arrive.  When the client arrives, she takes him/her to her office and gives them her trademark personal service.  She is a lawyer and deals with small business concerns.

Once her clients for the morning have been dealt with, she prepares for Court in the afternoon.  She does not eat lunch as there is no time before she has to leave for Court.  Her Court time is usually between 2 and 4 hours; then she heads home.  This part really blew me away, she makes dinner for her husband and the boys and leaves it in a warm oven to stay warm for them.

She then heads back to the office and works until about 7:30 or 8 pm.

She gets home, has her dinner, does the dishes, does one more chore, then folds and puts away the stuff from the dryer that she turned on this morning.

She heads to her home office, sits down and begins work on her blog.  At 11:30 pm she heads back to the kitchen to pull out everything she needs to make a crock pot meal tomorrow.  She preps everything and then sticks the pan into the fridge, does all the dishes she just created, dries and puts them away, has a quick look around the house for things that aren’t where they are supposed to be, puts them back where they belong, then heads to bed.

She cleans up and tries to be very quiet, as her husband has been in bed for at least 3 hours, lays out what she will want for tomorrow and finally heads to bed.  It is 12:30 am.

SHE TRULY IS SUPERWOMAN

By this point, I can hear you all saying “Yeah, right.  She’s handing you a line of bull.”

But, I am telling you that this was her day.  I had asked her if I could shadow her for one day and after informing me that her day starts at 4:30 am said I was welcome to come if I wanted.

I followed her the whole day and despite the fact that I knew I would be laid up for a few days.  I hung around until she went to bed.  I spent the night at her house.

SUPERWOMAN RISES AGAIN

She got up the following morning at 4:30 am and started over again.  She wanted to let me sleep until 7 when she woke the boys, but I set the alarm on my phone for 4:30 so I would know whether or not her previous day was a one off.

She did everything that she had the day before except for the chore, it was a different one this morning, then she also made cinnamon rolls, stripped the bed I had slept in and got everything into the laundry.  I apologised to her for giving her more work, and she told me not to be silly, she had enjoyed having the day with me as she doesn’t get time to see me much anymore.

She dropped her boys off and then drove me home.  I was swaying on my feet almost not able to stand at all; she helped me into the house, got me set up on the couch, gave me a hug.  Told me that she had had a wonderful time and then left for work.

THE SUPERWOMAN INTERVIEW 

We had arranged to meet the following Sunday so I could ask her some questions about her life.

We couldn’t meet on Saturday because that was her house cleaning day, all the chores she does during the week are just to keep things tidy until Saturday.

I couldn’t quite get my head around that because that first chore on Monday was cleaning the main bathroom, and she did it from top to bottom, including walls, floors and windows.  The one on Tuesday before she drove me home was dusting the house, the whole house.

 

SUPERWOMAN ANSWERS THE QUESTIONS

When we sat down on Sunday afternoon, I told her I thought she was crazy.  I asked her why she didn’t turn to her husband and boys to help with the housework, this is what she told me:

“I chose to be an independent lawyer.  I decided I would not be part of someone else’s firm. It was my decision to start a blog and post three times a week.  I am responsible for my home by my own decision.  I choose to allow my husband to relax when he gets home, he takes care of the outside and I take care of the inside.  My boys will have their time to be responsible, besides they do help on Saturdays, one vacuums and the other washes the floors for me.  I just choose to let them enjoy their time off during the week by not asking them to do anything else.”

She followed that up with “this is the life I chose for me; when the boys are gone and its just Hubby and me (sorry I promised her no names) maybe things will have slowed down enough that I will be able to take some time for me.

I just sat and stared at her for a moment, I was flabbergasted that someone could be that selfless.  She chooses to be this busy, she chooses to not accept help during the week, she chooses to be this Superwoman.

My next question was about what she had told me “that she hated being so busy all the time.”  I asked her if she hated it that much, why didn’t she just leave the blogging until she was done working, or why she didn’t just leave the house until the weekends?

Her response was “I chose this life for myself.”

I just nodded and went on to my next question, “When was the last time you took a day just for you?”

She laughed and said, “Last Monday, of course, I got to spend the day with you.”

INTERVIEW IS OVER 

I burst into tears on just how little she made time for herself.  She was totally surprised by my tears, she said “You’re not to cry for me, I had a great time the other day, didn’t you?  We got to talk and laugh and have a good time together.  What more could I ask for than to spend time with one of my greatest friends?  No, don’t you dare cry for me, it was fun, and this life is my choice.”

As I left I gave her a big hug and asked her to please try and take time for herself every day.  She just nodded.

 

MY THOUGHTS ON SUPERWOMAN

Ladies out there, be thankful for the life you have.  I swear that day that I shadowed her she did not have one moment of the entire day when she wasn’t busy doing something.

I thank God for my husband and children, they would never have let me get away with doing everything, even before I got so bad.  I can tell you for sure that my husband would not be happy with that life, as far as he is concerned the house, inside and out, is OUR responsibility, that we are partners and work together for the benefit of our home.

Like her, I only want what makes my family happy, but I so do not want to be her.  If my home is a little cluttered or messy, I can live with that; if it’s not spotless and dust free, I can live with that; I could not live thinking that everything had to be perfect every moment.  How about you?

 

THINGS I LOVE, USE, OR MAKE

I make some of my own cleaning products.  Today I would like to share with you two recipes for window/glass cleaner that really work and take the place of the expensive brand in the store.  Mine also make the windows so clean that crows could fly into them.

Recipe 1

1/4 Cup     Rubbing Alcohol

1/4 Cup     White Vinegar

1 Tbsp        Cornstarch

2 Cups        Warm Water

1                   Spray Bottle

Put all ingredients into the spray bottle and shake to combine.  Then use as you would the store bought kind.

 

Recipe 2

1/8 Cup      White Ammonia

1/4 Cup       Rubbing Alcohol

1 tsp.            Dish Detergent (Dawn Original)

Warm Water

1                     Spray Bottle

Same as above,  put all the ingredients into the bottle then add warm water until its full, then shake to combine and use as you would store bought.

PS:  I didn’t get much chance last week to work on the Fairy Garden, but I’m hoping to have more time this week.  Will keep you updated as I go.

 

QUOTE OF THE WEEK

QUOTE OF THE WEEK 04/24 - 04/30
QUOTE OF THE WEEK FOR APR. 24-APR. 30

 

This inspired me this week, I am imperfect, I am weird (ask anybody), I am just me; so this inspired me to be proud of who I am, of what I do, of who I care about, and what I believe in.  What more can you ask of a quote?

I hope it inspires you to be just you.

As always this one came from Pinterest

 

 

I had a very bad week this past week, so I think I’m just going to call the post up top the Family Life post and leave it at that for this week.

Of course,  I couldn’t leave you without a picture of the puppers.  Fighting again in the living room, you can see behind them what is supposed to be their beds, but we just use them as a toy box because they do not like to sleep alone, they must invade our bed each night.  Some nights Hawkeye would like to shoot them both, all they want to do is play and he gets up at 3 am.

 

Fighting again
The little darling always goes for the throat. Bailey and Willie play fighting again.

 

RECIPE OF THE WEEK

PRAWN, ASPARAGUS, AND RED PEPPER ALFREDO

WITH PENNE PASTA 

https://wp.me/p8bPwH-1ST

 

That’s it for this week, I hope you have a wonderful week, that the weekend is clear with warm blue skies, and that you are healthy, wealthy, and wise. (Sorry couldn’t resist)

Take care, and Hey! leave me a comment, the comment button is at the top of the post.  I would love to hear what you think, and I would love to hear how you liked the recipe.

See you next Tuesday.