This and That

I had a couple of things I wanted to share today.

The first is a post from a page that I follow on Facebook.

I started following this site when I read the book ‘Atomic Habits’ by James Clear, shortly after I retired. This book is full of common sense suggestions for making the most out of our lives. It is a guide to breaking habits that are detrimental to our well being and replacing them with constructive habits.

I love this particular post because it is so relevant to my life right now. When I retired, I had a fixed idea of what I wanted my life in retirement to be. Two years in, I have spent a lot of time focused on creating that life and I have enjoyed the journey, but my ultimate goals have changed – or my concept of retirement has. It isn’t a matter of what I want to do or to have anymore. It is about who I want to be. It is funny, when people retire they often talk about losing their identity. I am just discovering mine. ๐Ÿค—

A book well worth reading!

The second thing I wanted to share was yet another photo of Molly.

Roughing it in the sandbox. ๐Ÿ™„

That is it for today. Take care and have a great day! ๐ŸŒž๐Ÿ’ž

Summer 2022

It is the first official day of summer so I am showcasing a new seasonal appropriate header photo.ย  I forgot to ask her to autograph it, but this one comes from our twelve year old granddaughter Maddy.ย  It has to be a self portrait because it sure reminds me of her – right down to the perennially skinned knees.ย 

For those who use the WordPress reader and don’t see the header photo.

We are starting out the summer with a gloomy, cloudy day but it will be all rainbows if we get some much needed rain today.ย ย 

To finish getting Molly ready for summer walks and outings, we paid a visit to the veterinary clinic for her final round of puppy shots yesterday.ย  I am so glad that we are done with that and so grateful that we can afford the care and protection that it takes to keep her strong and healthy.ย  She weighed in at a whopping 42.5 pounds at four months old.

I’m sorry I don’t know where this meme originated but Dan shared it with me last night and I think it is hilarious – and very much Molly.ย  I am the one with the wine glass. ๐Ÿ˜‚

Here’s wishing all a wonderful summer. Take care and have a great day!

Eighteen Weeks

Anyone close to me in real life or online knows that in mid-February I went on a mission to improve my fitness.  My initial ‘program’ has evolved considerably as have my health and fitness and my ultimate goal.

I think this evolution can best be explained by posting the  TOP 10 benefits I have experienced in these past eighteen weeks. (Not in any particular order)…

#1 – I am stronger – I can easilyย  lift weights that I have not lifted for years.ย ย ย  I mean full, heavy garbage bags, rocks, BIG solid fry pans – on Saturday I even lifted our big dogย  Molly into our pool!ย  Every part of me is stronger.ย  I opened a new pickle jar with my bare hands yesterday.ย ย  Seriously!ย  This is real life, everyday strength that makes my life easier.

#2 – My balance and flexibility has improved.ย  – Again, this is life changing especially when navigating around our garden or Molly and her toys. (Or Molly and our shoes, sofa cushions and anything else that she makes off with).

#3 – My husband has noticed and remarked on the noticeable improvement in my physical shape. That is great because I want to look good for my husband, even after 25 years, and because it isn’t just about how I look. He respects the effort and dedication that I have put into improving my health and fitness. Respect is huge in any relationship.

#4 – I breathe easier. I still have asthma, COPD, and bronchiectasis. I always will, but getting fit has improved my lung function despite asthma, COPD, and bronchiectasis. I breathe easier and in turn I sleep better!

#5 – My collagen levels have improved. I know this because I have a genetic collagen disorder and because collagen levels drop for everyone as they as age – making things even more noticeable for anyone with pre-existing collagen issues. For me, an improvement in collagen has meant healthier skin. It has meant muscle strength and joint stability. I can crouch/squat down AND get back up. And it is so noticeable in the connective tissue between all of the multiple little boney areas in my body. My hands are virtually pain free, the little bones in my middle ears no longer wobble around causing vertigo, AND when I get up in the morning my feet do not feel like I am walking on bags of marbles.

#6 – My mental health is stronger. My mind is sharper. My memory is better. Overall I am functioning better and it is just easier to perform any mental task.

#7 – My emotional health is better. My life isn’t perfect. Lately there have been some seriously stressful family situations. Sometimes I struggle to meet the challenges. But I do meet them! I laugh, I cry, and I function in a healthy way.

#8 – My clothes fit better. That isn’t the be all, end all of any fitness program but it feels so good to just feel good in ones clothes. For the past ten years it has been hard to get anything to fit right because nothing about me was proportional.

#9 – I am excited about my future health and fitness levels. That is a big one for me because I am turning 67 years old next month. But for me, I know my best fitness years are not behind me. I am in better shape now than I have ever been in my life and I know that I can and will keep getting better. I don’t know how much better and I am not looking for immortality, but I know that unless I get hit by a bus or stricken by some major disease, I will get better. I have found a system that works for me and I know I can adapt as I go to make it better.

#10 – I have inspired others to work on their fitness and well-being. I am not saying that to brag or anything, but people have mentioned it. I had a long talk with my sister-in-law yesterday and we got on this subject. She moved from Costa Rica to Canada last year and has been struggling with the same type of health issues that I have struggled with for years and we are the same age. I started telling her how well I was doing and it turned into such a good conversation. She was so excited about starting her own fitness program when she gets moved into her new house next week and I am so excited for her! Never in my life have I ever inspired or imagined that I could inspire anyone to improve their level of fitness. ๐Ÿค—๐Ÿค—๐Ÿค—

Inspiration from my sister Elaine. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Anyway that is it for today, and for how my life has been going for the last eighteen weeks. Take care and have a great day!

Happy Father’s Day!

Happy Father’s Day ๐Ÿค—

Happy Father’s Day to all the father’s out there – including Dan, and those like him, who stepped up after the fact. It isn’t always easy (or economical) but hopefully the good days and the grandbabes make it all worth it.

Dan with granddaughter Genie and Molly๐Ÿ’ž

Happy Father’s Day to my Father and all those who have passed on over the years. It is incredible now to think of all they did to provide and care for their families.

My Dad who (long before I was born) worked as a boiler engineer at an airforce training base during World War II.

And Happy Father’s Day to the new generation of fathers out there. These guys amaze me with how involved they are with their children. Not just the fun stuff! These guys are hands on from day one. This new generation of fathers are loving the experience and their children are all the better off for it.

Son Dan with his son Casonthis isn’t a pose for a picture. This is real as it gets. ๐Ÿ’ž

That’s it for today. Take care and have a great day!๐Ÿ’ž๐ŸŒž

Harmony

Harmony – “The quality of forming a pleasing and consistent whole.” – Oxford Dictionary

One of the flower boxes our daughter in law Amanda and I filled when we were there mid May. ๐Ÿ’ž

“He who lives in harmony with himself, lives in harmony with the universe.” – Marcus Aurelius

“When we create peace, and harmony, and balance in our minds, we will find it in our lives.” – Louise Hay

“You are only afraid if you are not in harmony with yourself.” – Herman Hesse

“Music is the expression of harmony in sound. Love is the expression of harmony in life.” – Stephen Gaskin

“Harmony makes small things grow, lack of it makes great things decay.” – Sallust

“Nature reminds us how to be in harmony with life itself.” – Harold Baker

Have a great and harmonious day! ๐Ÿ’ž๐ŸŒž

Miss Molly Is Growing Up

Molly is four months old today! All things being equal, that would be twenty-eight months in human time. That seems about right. While she is obviously a joy, she has her “terrible two’s” moments.

Looking back through photos I have taken of her in the past couple of months, since she has been with us, it is amazing how she has grown and changed. She is still a baby, but she is getting bigger, more independent, and smarter every day! And… more helpful. She definitely likes to help! Last night she tried to help me take a metal splinter out of Dan’s leg. Somehow, having a big white fuzzy head between me and the magnifying glass did not help. ๐Ÿคฆ

First Day Home
With Her Toy Elephant.
First Roadtrip – and she was excellent!
In Her Kennel
This Morning

Here’s to Molly and many more months – and years of her filling our lives with all the love and joy she brings to our home. ๐Ÿ’ž

That’s it for today. Take care and have a great day! ๐ŸŒž๐Ÿ’ž

June 15th

Just another day in June! ย We finished putting up our pool yesterday.ย  With temperatures heading into the 30+ Celsius range on Saturday, weย  are right on time.ย  We are supposed to see some rain this afternoon, but the sun is still shining so I may be helping nature out with the watering hose if things do not proceed as planned.

A few more photos that I took this morning:

Molly, snacking on a Cedar.
Our first Strawberry
Dan’s Bleeding Heart is starting to bloom.
My elephant Marigolds by my meditating chair

That’s it for today. Take care and have a great day!

Signs of Summer

It has been a long time coming, but we are finally seeingย  signs of Summer in Saskatchewan.ย 

These are a few of the photos I took yesterday while wandering around.ย ย  If I had a theme for our yard this year, I am not seeing it yet.ย ย  The bits and pieces of colour seem pretty random.

Wild Flowers surrounding the bird bath.
A Pansy
A Petunia blooming in the welcome basket.
Marigolds to keep mosquitos away.ย  We’ll see?
Petunias from Unique Garden Centre.
A Primrose for our granddaughter ‘Primrose’
More Pansies
A perennial we have had for years.ย  I have no idea what it is but I move it every few years and it blooms wherever it goes.
A Petunia overlooking the pond.ย  I am totally impressed with all of the petunias I started from seed this year.ย  ๐Ÿ˜‰

That’s it for today. Take care and have a great day! ๐Ÿค—๐Ÿ’ž

Seventeen Weeks

Here I am, seventeen weeks since I started my fitness mission to get out of my rocking chair and into rocking my retirement lifestyle.ย 

  • Notable tidbits from the past week:
  • Feeling good physically. Every week is just that bit better. ๐Ÿ˜Š
  • Feeling fine mentally!ย  On top of my game. ๐Ÿ™‚
  • Emotionally, it has been a bit of a struggle.ย  Nothing that I can’t chalk up to a full moon and a deeply embedded habit of stressing out. ๐Ÿ™„
  • After seventeen weeks in I have FINALLY lost a solid TEN pounds.ย ย  That is at least twice as much as I have ever lost on a fitness plan, so will take it as a win.
  • After seventeen weeks of dancersizing and two weeks of beet juice, my blood pressure is back down to normal +/- 120/80.
  • A few days ago, I added a tablespoon of sauerkraut (before supper) to my diet. Hopefully it will help settle digestive issues. If it works, thank you sister Elaine for the suggestion. If not, it is all good – I love sauerkraut.
  • On the Molly side:
  • Two weeks until we can start walking the neighbourhood – And not a minute too soon. Molly is BORED. We went out and bought her some new toys this morning, to mix things up a bit for her. We did not buy her the $20.00 rubber stick. Seriously! Dan did find a stick a few weeks ago, cleaned the bark off of it and filed down the sharp bits. We tried to teach her to fetch it but she just wanted to eat it. ๐Ÿ˜‹
  • GOOD NEWS! Molly FINALLY quit trying to bite and scratch my arms. They may be scarred for life but I am no longer covered in peroxide and bandaids.
  • BAD NEWS! Molly’s sheep herding tendencies have reached a new level. Now she has taken up head butting and butt nipping. Since we lack sheep, my butt is the target. I don’t know what is worse, when she follows me around nipping at my butt or when she charges full tilt across the yard and slams her head into my butt. Neither is pleasant or particularly elegant. ๐Ÿ™„

Photos of Molly:

That’s it for today. Take care and have a great day! ๐ŸŒž๐Ÿ’ž

All Things Molly

From all indications, Molly has reached the puppy equivalentย stage comparable to human toddlers or teenagers.ย ย  I am not sure which, but she has been busy being adorable, obnoxious,ย  and ‘helpful’.

  • In the past few days, Molly has:
  • Laid claim to the livingroom sofa
  • Chased a mouse onto a sticky pad mouse trap AND hovered around me as I disposed of said mouse and trap. (That was an ordeal – and yes I did get my rubber glove stuck in the sticky stuff of the trap, which the mouse was also stuck in. ๐Ÿ˜ณ)
  • Knocked over a speaker/stand while I was taking a bath.
  • Helped me pull dandelions by digging them out to the depth of their roots, leaving sizeable holes in our backyard.
  • Learned to get my attention when I am sitting in the garden, by sneaking up behind me, leaping on me and wrapping her front legs around my neck AND licking the top of my head.
  • AND – She has learned which cupboard holds our dishcloths and towels, how to get them all out at once and how to transport them to various yard locations before I can catch her.

Other than that, things haven’t been going too badly with Molly. I (finally) found a grooming tool that seems to work fairly well at dealing with matting in her nether regions. She has been pretty good about going to bed and sleeping through the night (as long as the night ends at 5 am). I bought her a crate this week, which may or may not prove helpful when I am getting some yard maintenance done in the next few weeks. And, our games of fetch are improving. Molly generally brings her ball or Frisbee back to me, she almost always gives it to me without drawing blood (maybe I am just running out?), AND I can sometimes throw her ball or Frisbee where I want it to go (and sometimes I just hit the eaves troughs).

That is it for today. Take care and have a great day!๐Ÿ’ž