Saturday, March 18, 2023



Which is more important; the big picture or the small details? Some people love the big picture way of thinking while others prefer to stick with the small details. For me, they BOTH are equally important. The saying that you can't see the forest for the trees come to my mind. It is important to not miss the forest for the trees. A clear image of the forest is the big picture. Yet remembering that the forest is made up of individual trees  -  those small details. As the quote from Gail Lynne Goodwin adds that when that happens it may be time to go for a walk IN the forest just to see how it is made up with the details.

I am relating this to my own writing of my novel I want to finish writing and either send off to an editor and then publishers or self-publish, if necessary and hope that people will buy it and enjoy it. Some people know this about me but if asked about what small details that went into writing and formatting my book, I don't seem to have a clear step-by-step plan outlined. Why? Because I am not that clear about the details myself and I tend to stay stuck in the "thinking mode." 

Too many small details really do seem to overwhelm me. I just must remember that it is ok to have them both - the big picture and the small details going on at the same time. Taking action on those small details is the direction that I must head toward getting me to the big picture. 

It is best to have them both understood and in my brain at the same time. Action must be taken on those small details is the direction that I must head toward getting me to the BIG PICTURE. They work together. Call it 'team work' if you will. It is actually the details that help me march toward the big picture. They become motivational cues that I am using as post-it notes on a story board for myself. A little progress towards my major goal is better than no progress. The details actually create the big picture.

There really is no such thing as going back to square one. Even if I have felt like I am having to start over. I simply am trying again with more knowledge, strength and power than I had before. My journey was never over, it was just waiting for me to find it again. I am glad it waited on me. I am worth it!

Saturday, March 11, 2023



To get along in life, all I try to do is to continue to look for the magic that is all around me. Really, it is everywhere. I could focus on negativity, however, I choose to look for the power of positivity. It actually comes fairly easy for me. I do consider this a gift because I know that a lot of people have trouble with this. One thing that helps me is that I have stopped watching so much news and weather. DRAMA, DRAMA, DRAMA! The station managers feel that is what draws in their viewers and to be honest? I believe it does. Just read social media some times and hear what people are saying about the times that we live in today. (Another thing that I have learned to do is to use my scroll button and to not let others pull me into their negative drama!)

It is true that happiness is actually in our own hands. I just open all of my senses, along with my heart and soul and I can feel the power that is within me. The power that can make my mood elevator soar to the penthouse. Some days, I will admit, that I must push the going up button a little harder than others. Another trick that I use to help me is to surround myself with others who can support what is happening in my life and understand me with no judgments. I know that I already have what it takes, I just need a little encouragement now and then. 

One recent example is that I had my hair fried. I won't go into detail of who, what, when or where. I just wanted to cry and did all the way home and each time that I looked in the mirror. And if the bleach mess up job was not bad enough, then I had scissors taken to it and received the worse lopsided haircut ever. So between the bleach not being done correctly and then wild, uncontrolled scissor swipes, I left crying after I removed the scissors from my hairdresser's hands. Thank goodness the support of the staff there took care of me. I am so grateful for that. After one time back to the salon, I was able to live with it because they showed me what to do and gave me the products to do it myself until my hair becomes normal again.

It really is a matter of looking for the magic all around us while we look on the brighter side of life. My close family and friends were a huge support to help get me through this trying time. As far as the salon goes, I sent them a little special treat for their kindness.

Really it is easier to help spread kindness, love, empathy, peace, hope and compassion all around to others than spew out negativity. I find it not only soothes me on the receiving end but also on the giving end of it. 

I know that I truly do already have what it takes to find my happy place. I tend to joke and say that my happy place is on the beach (and it is.) Let's be honest here. I am living in landlocked Memphis, Tennessee. So I would say that if the beach is my only happy place then I am not going to be happy very often within the year. 

Finding my happy place is  really easy when I take the time to play and to make it colorful and to plant more flowers (which I have planned out already for the garden). 

Living with two very special granddaughters gives me lots of time for play. And hopping on The City of New Orleans, I have two more granddaughters in New Orleans to show me how it is to just let the inner child in me out. It is a great feeling. I watch tv shows and movies with them that I never watched before. Coloring, painting, helping with homework, and playing games are ways of helping to make my life more colorful and fun. Try it sometime in whatever way it works for you. Right now, we have caterpillars living in our dining room, making cocoons and in a little over a week...BUTTERFLIES! So yes, I try to make things colorful in every way I can. 

Saturday, March 4, 2023



There are times that I can feel so overwhelmed in trying to get tasks accomplished that I have a voice in my head saying that you don't have time to take fifteen minutes to regroup. I KNOW in my head that I need to take just a fifteen minute break to feel better and able to complete what I need to do with a clearer mind. 

Most of what I have set up for myself actually does take fifteen minutes, while a few I give a little more attention to. I should be able to accomplish this. Afterall, I am now retired, yet swirling in my head is a question that asks, "How did you work a full time job and get things done that take so much time and energy?" My answer to myself if probably by prioritizing. 

My life (even as a retiree) seems to be so full of lists to do that making time for self-care or just giving myself a moment to catch my breath seems impossible. I have started to feel this way often. But I have discovered that simple things that don't take a lot of time can make a huge difference in how I feel mentally and physically about completing must do tasks. It had become easy to dismiss them by telling myself that these activities can't possibly make a dent in my overwhelmed feeling of getting through all of the paperwork.

Wow! Was I ever wrong about that. My first idea popped to me after reading in three different articles about how just taking a break for 10 - 15 minutes and going for a brisk (however brisk you want to make it) walk. At the time, my walk outside involves just going around the garden. Spring is starting to show up in mysterious ways. I think it has to do with the outside air, whether it is cold or not. It helps clear my mind. And, I enjoy seeing how the signs of Spring are ever changing in their beauty.

In the beginning, I know I was fighting with one side of my brain telling me to just keep cranking out the work while the other side was telling me to take that walk. I may not have the sand and the ocean to take my walk however, I am grateful that I have a beautiful garden with a pool to walk around and breathe the fresh air. I know that I need this and I always feel better. 

Another activity that I try to use is to get on my recumbent bike for an activity. It only takes 10 - 15 minutes. Every time that I pedal away, I try to beat how far I went the last time in the same amount of minutes. I compete against myself which helps me to let out steam and then get back to work.

A very British thing to do is to have a special Tea Party for one. "ME!" Use a special flavored tea in a real china tea cup and saucer and perhaps a little butter cookie? Hmmm  That always does the trick to change my hum-drum tasks that I must work on to a more engaging activity. 

Then there are days that my dry eyes are bothering me more than usual. Time to get my dry eye therapy kit out, heat it and set my timer for 10 minutes of closing my eyes with the heated eye mask over my eyes. That is something that can really make a huge difference if dry eyes are an issue.

My last idea that helps me take a break and refocus takes a little more time than 10 - 15 minutes in total time. I figure that is ok because this is something that I use to unwind at the end of a day.

It can wipe away all that I have been through during the day. It involves pouring a glass of wine, running a hot bubble bath, lighting a candle and just unwinding and relaxing. Trust me. It works wonders!

If I can find a way to spend 5 - 10 less minutes on social media, or 5 - 10 minutes less watching the news and weather, then I have the time needed for my own self-care.