Friday, May 30, 2014

Seeds of Inspiration

For many of us, gardening can be nothing more than a chore any time of the year. With an over abundance of rain, and ever-increasing days of sunshine and warmth, gardening is a chore to even the most seasoned gardeners. Between rainstorms, I am doing the same things over and over again; and I know the tasks and weeds will outnumber any list of gardening chores I may have.

At this point, I won’t be able to get ahead of the chores, or even try to catch up. Trying to take control over my own ideals can be frustrating, but I have learned to let those ideals go. Gardening has taught me many things, so not even trying to catch up is freeing. The seeds of inspiration I have gained from a lifetime of gardening have carried over into other aspects of my life. Here's a seed for you: there is always going to be one more thing, but you'll get to it eventually, or not. It’s okay!
Inspiration photo courtesy of photosteve101

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

A Mouse in the House

We recently noticed odd scraping and chewing sounds in the attic above our bedroom. While we have had mice visiting our garage, never have we had them in the attic. Access to this space is through our bedroom closet ceiling. My husband, Dennis, set two traps and closed the access.

The next day, while I was preparing to hop in the shower so we could head out for the day to celebrate our anniversary, Dennis decided to check the traps. Up the ladder he went. Yes, indeed, we caught two mice! While he was preparing to take the traps out of the attic, all at once I hear, “Oh $#@!,” and seconds later, a mouse lands on his shoulder and leaps off taking flight in the closet. Standing at the doorway, I figured if there were any problems I would close the bi-fold door. I failed to mention that to Dennis prior to my slamming the door shut with him still in the closet.

As I previously disclosed, I was preparing to hop in the shower. So, half dressed, with a bleaching solution sitting on my upper lip for purposes I really don’t need to go into, I ran down the stairs, out to the garage, and grabbed a bucket. Back upstairs I went. When my dear husband saw the mouse run to the opposite end of the closet, I quickly opened the door, tossed the bucket to Dennis, and just as quickly slammed the door shut. Fortunately, the mouse was more upset about the goings on in the closet than we were. As soon as Dennis set the bucket upside down at a bit of a tilt, the little mouse decided it looked safe and ran underneath. Got ‘em!

Still half dressed with my lovely bleaching solution mustache, back downstairs I run on a mission to find cardboard to slide under said mouse and bucket. Dennis took care of the rest of the mouse activity at this point while I was having a wonderfully good laugh. All I kept picturing was that darn mouse flying off his shoulder.

I giggled off and on all day, while he just shook his head. I’m sure we will have more mouse tales in our future as we roll through the upcoming years together. While many anniversaries come and go, our thirty-sixth won’t soon be forgotten. It’s nice to have loving memories to share with each other, but seldom do you get a half dressed, lip-bleaching wife running up and down the stairs while the husband is closed up in a closet with an acrobatic mouse. Gotta love those memories that put a smile on your face!
OMG! photo courtesy of johnson d

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Warrior Pose

I make sure yoga poses are a part of my weekly workout routine. Yoga helps me combine mental and physical expression, as in mind, body and spirit. Breathing deeply, while maintaining form and balance, not only strengthens my body, but stills my mind. In order to hold the poses properly, I must focus; otherwise, I lose balance.

My favorite pose is the Warrior and its variations. When I first tried this, it was difficult to hold the position for very long at all. My whole body seemed to tremble just trying to maintain the form. Now, I feel I am the warrior, and can hold the position for as long as I would like, even with my eyes closed. It has become rather centering and relaxing.

While I change Yoga routines with regularity, I always include my warrior. Anything that helps me become the warrior in my life is an important strengthening piece of my journey, and should be lovingly maintained. On this amazing journey of mine, the warrior in me will introduce more positive guidance to my mental and physical expression. I will continue to bring more centering and relaxing focus to my day.
Warrior II pose courtesy of a4gpa

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Use It or Lose It

Years ago, I noticed I had the tendency to walk into things; and I’m not just talking about the occasional table or whatever I may be walking around. I seemed to lightly brush or whack one or the other shoulder nearly every time I went through a doorway. When walking with others, I was apt to run into whoever I was walking with, usually more than once. Both of these phenomena grew worse as the years rolled by. After many bruised legs, shoulders and more than a few stepped on toes, I serendipitously came across articles relating to balance. Frankly, I hadn’t really thought about how balance, or lack thereof, may be the cause of my failure to walk through a door like a normal person, or why I had to continuously excuse myself for running into friends and loved ones. I just figured I wasn’t paying close enough attention while dashing this way and that. Though I attributed the walking into people as leaning in and paying attention to, I had to really concentrate to not walk into them.

We all know our physical abilities diminish unless we are using our bodies in a variety of ways. Use it or lose it, as they say. While I had been lifting weights for years, and knew the importance of changing my routine regularly, muscle strength was not enough to create a more stable body. I needed to include balance exercises. While there are many things that come into play affecting balance, one of the best things you can do is to practice; and guess what? It’s never too late.

In order to take control of my wandering body, I started simply. Whenever brushing my teeth, I would stand on one foot and suck in my gut (very important as these core muscles give you support). When I switched from top to bottom teeth, I would switch what foot I was standing on. Initially, I was surprised out how out of balance I was. But soon I was spitting in the sink while bending at the waist, and standing on one foot, all without falling over.

Over the years, I have added various balance exercises to my workouts. They not only increase the difficulty of whatever I am doing, they are fun. For example: when doing bicep curls while standing on one leg, it turns an arm exercise into a leg workout at the same time. And when I think the balance exercise has become easy, I close my eyes. It’s like starting all over again. Why is that fun? You can’t help but laugh at yourself while trying to maintain balance.

We hear about the increased occurrence of falling injuries as bodies age. Now, I have a better understanding of why it happens. Adding the practice of balance to my life has given me a better chance of not falling; thus, I have a better chance of not injuring myself. I seldom run into doorjambs these days. And while I may run into people from time to time when walking with them, I am stepping on fewer toes.

Note: Search balance exercises on the Internet, and you will find many ways to work balance into your life.

Surprise face photo courtesy of louiscrusoe