Monday Gets Prepared

Most of my life I lived in Florida and….most of my life around this time, we would all start to get a little edgy that the “big one” may hit us this year….I’m talking the nasty “H” word!  Hurricanes!  Each year we would gather supplies, water, extra gas, check the generator, uncover the hurricane shutters, find copies of insurance policies….the list goes on and on…..as we would “Prepare” for the possibility of being the bulls-eye target for Emma, Katrina, Rachel….or whatever alphabet-given name the fierce winds were given at the time. Most seasons, I just remember a lot of cleanup in the yard of branches that should have been trimmed anyway and major window washing afterwards from all the salt spray that would get brought in, returning tumbled items to neighbor’s yards and playing a lot of board games for entertainment until the power was returned to our area.

The next year, the same ritual would begin….and mostly, it was just a lot of waiting for the infamous Cantore to let us know where he thought (actually it was just a guess because Hurricanes seem to have a mind of their own) the storm would make landfall.  What I remember vividly is how I would push myself to “Be Prepared”.  Even when I tried to convince myself that I was fully stocked,  the uncertainty would creep into my mind and I would find myself rushing out to the local store for more of those non-perishable snack foods, buying one more bag or two of ice and stopping at the gas station on the way home to ‘top off my tank’.  My personal compulsive ritual was to make sure everything was filed and put away in my home office and multiple copies were made of my computer back up disc to be locked away in a water-tight safe.

Funny how things get imbedded in your psyche……last week at work, I was compulsively cleaning off my desk and making sure everything was filed away.  Has L.A. ever had a hurricane?!!   Interesting weather trivia question….anyone know the answer??  Needless to say, there are other disasters that L.A. has experienced.  In fact, I probably should make filing an hourly chore just in case the ground starts to….shhhhush!  I just can’t repeat that nasty ‘E’ word!

What I keep thinking is why don’t we take other things in life more seriously?  Why don’t we “Get Prepared” for good things too?  Why does it always have to be about something disastrous?  So Today, I’m declaring that….

Monday Gets Prepared

That’s right!  We’re going to be prepared for whatever comes our way.  But instead of disasters, we’re going to prepare for something good!  What is it going to be?  Well, that’s your homework!  I know what I’m going to do.  I believe something really exciting is going to happen in my life.  I’m not sure what it is yet, but I believe Life brings us great joy only if we are willing to open our heart to receive the good stuff and to be open to change and opportunities.  Some people actually get lots of good stuff showered on them; but they haven’t opened their heart, so they don’t even know what has arrived at their front door!  It just passes them by without even an acknowledgement.  How sad!

So here’s the ‘how to prepare’ directions that I’m using.   I would love for you to join me in this Preparedness Extravaganza.

  • I’m going to make a list (I know…I know, you’re tired of these….but humor me for now) of things that I would like to accomplish this week, in the next month and then each month after that for the next several months.
  • I’m going to focus on eating good and healthy food and getting more exercise (my good buddy, Tramp, will love that part) and getting plenty of rest.
  • I will NOT let ‘roadblocks’ stop me when I feel I just can’t make the next hurdle.
  • I will do more things that make me happy and make me smile.
  • I will make difficult choices by listening to what my heart tells me is the right thing to do.
  • I will truly understand and appreciate the gifts I have been given and use that feeling of gratefulness to be able to live in the moment instead of pushing life along too quickly.
  • I will continue to do my part to make a difference in this world.   I will become a model for the ‘lead by example’ role.
  • But the most important thing is that I will love and appreciate and be grateful for whatever Life brings me.  My heart will be wide open!

So, how about you?  Want to be a good girl/boy scout and attest to your motto.

I wonder what’s around the corner for you?

I hope you will ‘stock up on supplies’ so you will “Be Prepared”.

But, more importantly, I hope you will have an open heart so you can feel the joy that is bestowed on you.

I hope Monday is the beginning of something exciting in YOUR life.

Be ready for the ‘gifts’ that arrive on your doorstep!

You Matter!

Smiles,

Nancy

Monday Gets Healthy

I have been taking some medical tests in the last month or so to get caught up on some preventative healthcare that I had been putting off.  It has not been a pleasant experience some times and it is very time-consuming.  I am sick of being questioned and stuck and poked and well….you know the usual routine.  I have always hoped that they would some day come up with a process where you could just go through a walk thru or even better a drive thru type set up.  All your tests, scans, etc., could be taken care of in less than five minutes and your diagnosis and results would be printed out at an ATM kind of machine.   I just really don’t see why that is not a possibility??!!  Of course, mentioning to doctors about thoughts like this sets their hair on end….probably thinking of the multiple thousands of dollars they would lose if this ever happen.  George Jetson World where are you?

Despite the annoyance and my consumed time, all my test results came back within a pretty normal range and the end of the story is basically that I am pretty healthy.  With that knowledge, I am very relieved and thankful for such a good report.  I would like to offer some encouragement to others that might be putting off scheduling their routine checkups like I have been doing.  So, today……..

Monday Gets Healthy

In such a fast-paced world, we need to do everything we can to counteract some of the stresses that are all around us that are just impossible to avoid…..traffic, financial strains, national news and despair, kids….sometimes I even reach a point of over-abundance of stress that dealing with junk mail is even an annoyance for me.  If we moved to a deserted island, we could eliminate the majority of our daily stresses, but that’s not on my option possibilities right now.  I am envious if it might be on yours.  For those of us who must ‘keep marching on’, I would like to offer some encouraging words for you to take note of your current lifestyle and access what changes you might need to make to be a bit more healthy and balance your daily stresses.

First, I would definitely encourage you to take advantage of any insurance-covered preventative care that might be available to you.  Often, catching something in its early stages can make a world of difference for the end results.  It’s not the most appealing thing to do; but it is the smartest thing to do for yourself and your family too.  If you don’t have healthcare, there are still affordable options out there if you do a little digging that you can take advantage of for yourself and your family.

Next, and I think probably the most important, is to assess your general lifestyle choices.  Do you get enough rest and sleep?  Do you eat a proper diet?  Do you have habits like smoking or over-indulging in alcohol that could be changed or at least reduced?  Do you get enough exercise?  All of these questions or a personal thing and can only be answered by you……truthfully that is!!  You can tell your doctor anything that you would like them to hear; but you need to be accountable for the truth for yourself.

Are you now….Overwhelmed?!!  Depressed?!!  Frustrated?!!  Okay, it’s time for another one of those infamous lists.  Make a list starting with what you think is the most important thing to change.  For me, it is diet.  I have been trying to lose a few pounds and also eat healthier.  It’s not easy to change just that little bit; but if you keep making little changes slowly, you will start to see the positive results of your efforts.  It feels good too.  I have set very small goals for myself and when I meet that goal, I pat myself on the back and then I set another one.

So…..today is a wonderful day to start your new life.

Let me hear it…..what day is it?…..It’s Monday Gets Healthy!!

All you have to do is JUST START WITH MONDAY.

The rest of the week, you just repeat Monday’s efforts.

So….don’t you want to be healthy?  Don’t you want to feel better?

And most importantly, don’t you owe that to yourself?

You’re special!  You’re important!  You Matter!

Many hopes sent your way that you will believe this and realize that it is worth all the effort that you put forth.

Have a great day.

Smiles,

Nancy

Monday Gets Challenged to ‘Pay It Forward’

I have received many, many really sweet messages here on WordPress from bloggers who appreciated hearing even just a few little sincere words about their thought-provoking or interesting posts.  It makes me realize more and more how important it is to take the time out of each day to express what one often feels but doesn’t always take the time to express to others.  We rush through our day trying to check off things on our own lists; but don’t take the moment to think how important it is to realize we need to look beyond ourselves.  So today…….

Monday Gets Challenged to ‘Pay It Forward’

How many times have you been in an elevator with other people and find yourself looking at the ground?  Or maybe walking out of your house and don’t acknowledge your neighbor coming out at the same time?  Did you ever think that someone that is right there in front of you might need a sincere smile or a ‘how are you doing?’  Perhaps, a neighbor or friend has done something really nice for you and you keep thinking you will also do something nice for them.  But…what happens?  It keeps getting pushed further and further down on the priority list.  Soon, it is so low that you’re now embarrassed that you have not done something to return the favor.  Ever walked past someone on the street who is ‘down and out’ and you try to erase them from not only your view; but also from your mind?  The attitude of not acknowledging that they exist helps us to not feel guilty that we might have a much better life than some others.  We seem to “choose” who we want to share with and are not good at ‘on the spot’ giving.

The ironic truth is that when we do, in fact, take the time to help others, we feel so great about our deed.  It makes us feel, in a small but effective way, we have made a difference in someone else’s life.  We may even ‘swear’ that it’s going to become a habit and we’ll continue on our path of goodness for a long time.  But….something often gets in the way of continuing on this path; and we yet again, find ourselves back in our little cocoon.   We forget quickly how awesome it felt to not just think of ourselves and to give back.

So….this Monday’s request is going to be a very enjoyable moment for you.  I promise you will feel especially good at the end of the day….and so will others!  With all the social media outlets, voice mail, text messages and even here on WordPress, this task should be a fairly simple one for you.  I challenge you to “Pay It Forward”.  Make a list of five people that you know that deserves to hear some kind words from you.  Send them some kind of message or better yet give them a call or tell them in person.  Tell them how much you appreciate them and how they have made a difference during difficult moments in your life.  Your mind is already working, right?  I bet you already have number 1 and 2 ready to add to your list.

After you have accomplished this and if you feel you’ve just gotten warmed up, make another list of five people that you can do something special for them.  It doesn’t have to be a spectacular moment.  Just something simple will work just fine!  Maybe you have some extra fruit that you just bought and you could offer part of it to your neighbor.  Maybe someone at work has a huge project to complete and you could offer to help or pick up lunch for them while they are so bogged down.  How about walking someone’s dog for them that has not been feeling very good?  Maybe even give the ole pooch a nice brushing before you return them.  It’s not about the huge drama of the task, it’s about the simple spirit of giving.

Today is YOUR day to help Monday Get Challenged to ‘Pay It Forward’!!!!

You are going to go to bed tonight with a smile on your face knowing that you have made a difference in this, sometimes, crazy and hectic world.

And…..here’s high hopes that you wake up tomorrow wanting to continue with your recent good feeling and start Tuesday with the same plan.

A fellow blogger told me that it takes 21 days to change a habit…..Can you IMAGINE what this world would be like if everyone took the 21 day challenge to ‘Pay It Forward’ !!!!

Are you ready to be a part of that possibility?!!

I’d love to hear what was on your list….or maybe how you’re feeling at the end of today.

Oh yeah….don’t forget your four-legged friends too.  Pets give lots of love and don’t ask much in return.

I’ve made MY list…….I’ve got to get busy.

You Matter!

Smiles,  Nancy

Monday Gets Put on Trial

The news has been exploding with some monumental legal cases ending with the verdicts of “Guilty”.  The victims in some of these cases are such innocent human beings and are subjected to such abuse by not only the crime itself, but by the media that drags every little detail into a sometimes very skewed exposure of what they believe to be the facts.

Sometimes innocent people are blamed and even punished for a crime that they didn’t even commit. They are “punished” over and over and made to feel they are the guilty ones.  I wish we could exercise our freedom of speech in a much more respectful and protective way.

I wonder how many people have been blamed for a wrong doing when they were, in fact, the victim?!!  We are sometimes quick to judge a situation without knowing all the facts or truly seeing the whole picture.  We create the “story” and fill in the details with hearsay evidence that makes perfect sense at the time.  What happened to our democratic rights that say we are innocent until proven guilty?

In fact, speaking of “Guilty”, how the heck did poor “Monday” get such a bad rep?!!  Years of persecution just because it is the first day of the week.   And is it really the guilty one or actually the victim?  I’d like to present its case to you today…..

Monday Gets Put on Trial.

Fact #1:  Monday’s story began around the 12th century and means Moon Day.  Greeks and Romans considered the Moon a God to worship.  So, nothing wrong with its beginnings….in fact, a sacred beginning that should deserve some respect on those grounds alone.

Fact #2:  Monday has become known as the first day of the week.  However, most calendars show the beginning of the week on either Saturday or Sunday.  So, in fact, Monday is actually the second or third day of the week.  Did someone forget how to count?  Monday is NOT number one.

Fact #3:  Monday is the first day of the work week.  That is a fact….but only for some people.  I know there are many businesses that are closed on Monday (probably out of respect for Monday), some work weekends and have Monday and Tuesday off and some people work seven days a week and it would be difficult to determine what is their “first” day of work.  So, true that it is the first day for some, it doesn’t apply to everyone; so think Monday shouldn’t bear the whole burden of being the ONLY first day of the work week.  Tuesday and Wednesday are witnesses that should accept some of the responsibility for their contribution and stop remaining silent.

Fact #4:  Blue Monday title comes from the 3rd Monday in January being known as the most depressing day of the year.  It is a time that we have those post-partum realization pains of Christmas excitement being over, the credit card bills start arriving with testaments to our holiday overspending and often the weather is pretty crummy in most parts of the country.  But even the mathematical formula that was created to prove this pseudoscience by Cliff Arnall falls short of proven this theory.  One of those crimes that made poor Monday suffer yet again as an innocent victim.

Fact #5:  Diet or exercise programs are often started on Monday.  We eat like a bunch of piglets and laz around on the weekend prior to our goal setting day and choose Monday to start our new plan…..probably because we are so sick from over-indulging that we have no other choice.  Someone, in this case Monday, has to step in and put the brakes on our out of control behavior.  Hero in my book.

So there you have it.  For centuries, Poor Monday has been an innocent victim of abuse.  Over and over, taking the punishment from many without ever getting some kind of break from its persecution.  Well, I’m here to protect the poor sweet thing.  I am a witness in its behalf who is standing up proud to align myself with what I think we should hail as a hero.

Headline reads:  Monday Gets Put on Trial….but found innocent of all charges!!

Here’s to you, Monday!!

You’re a brave individual and a good friend to me.

I will make you proud by trying to do my best to make Monday known as the best day of the week!  I will make a difference.

Do I have any followers out there?  Anyone want to join my crusade to “free” Monday from years of neglect and wrongdoing?

Let’s make a difference and turn a victim into a hero.

You Matter, Monday!

Smiles,

Nancy

Monday Gets Reflective

Have you looked in the mirror lately?  I don’t mean to see if your outfit makes you look fat or not, whether you have anything green between your teeth or perhaps, how handsome you “think” you look.  I mean REALLY looked to see who you are.  Try it….look in the mirror and say out loud “Who am I?”  It’s a little bit eerie, as while you hope for a positive answer, you are also afraid that the reply might be just the opposite.  If you stand there for more than 20 seconds, you start feeling that you want to look away.  I’m not sure if it is just a normal reaction or if you start believing the person in the reflection is starting to become real.  That they might actually start talking and tell you the truth….sometimes, not what you want to hear.  Today, let’s talk about what we see……

Monday Gets Reflective

Do you sincerely like the person that you see in the mirror?  Are you the person you see in the mirror??  Some people seem to think of themselves in a very different way than others see and experience them.  “Ego, narcissism, selfish, self-centered” are all words that come to mind.  I’m sure there’s at least one of those on your list of friends.  Sometimes, the most intelligent and talented people have a “self” about them that makes us not want to deal with them on a personal level.  I always wonder if they realize the annoyance to others that they provide?!!

If you like the person you see, then you get a gold star  because you have learned your life lessons well and you are standing proud.  You may not have always felt that way; but it is so nice to reach a point in life that you can feel certain that you are on the right path.  I remember when my son was younger that people would ask me what I thought he would be when he grew up.  My answer was always “All I want is for him is to feel secure and happy.  I want him to feel confident about himself.”  I think some were expecting me to say something like a doctor, lawyer, rocket scientist, a successful business man or maybe even the president.  But, I never thought of those as dreams or gifts I wanted to project on my child.  Instead, I just wanted him to like the person he was and feel good about himself.  If he had that, then everything else would fall into place.

I think it must be so very difficult to see a different reflection.  I think everyone has experienced it at some time in their lives.  Some, however, never see any picture of ‘self’ that they ever enjoy experiencing.  Their gazing is that of a dark and frightened world.  Sadly, they are often not always the cause of the mirror image.  So many, many children and young adults in this world are never given a boost in their lives to help them grow into flourishing, self-assured adults.  When they become adults, they struggle to make changes to adjust their feelings.  Luckily, there are success stories.  Unfortunately, however, there are also dreadful failures too.  They may even succeed in life on the surface; but they are never without their “masks” and few, if any, people really know what they are experiencing in the deepest part of their soul.

I wish I could “fix” the whole world and every person in it.  I wish everyone could feel great happiness and abounding joy.  I wish everyone could look in the mirror today and like the person they see.  But, yet again, I have discovered that Santa still hasn’t delivered a magic wand!!  I’m not sure of the delay on his part….maybe next year.  Until my SanEx delivery arrives, I think there are some possibilities to make a difference in this regard.  Here’s what I would like you to do today…..

Everyone needs a boost from time to time…..no matter what kind of reflection is in the mirror.  As you go through the day, be very conscious of the people you are interacting with.  Listen…..really listen…..to what they are saying.  Don’t make judgments or give them pre-conceived labels.  Who knows what THEY may have seen in the mirror this morning!!  Instead, compliment them, encourage them, show them that you really care.  Make them feel you are standing up and applauding what they are saying.  You may be just be the inspiration they needed to change a bad path in their current direction of travels.

So, what did you see in the mirror today?

No matter the reflection, you can always change things to make a difference……in your life and in someone else’s life….if you want to, that is…It’s your choice!

What I wish for you is Monday becomes a reflection of Tuesday and Tuesday reflects Wednesday…..and so on and so on!!

By doing so, you have single-handedly changed the world.  It just takes ONE individual to make a difference….will you be counted as one of them today?!!  I’m counting on the answer from you to be “YES”

You Matter!….I’m applauding you LOUDLY today!

Smiles,

Nancy

Monday Gets A Fresh Start

Today is Monday and if you let it…… it could just be the very best day of your week.

It can be the day you started a new diet (it seems to always be that day for me) or a new job or moved to a new apartment (excitement could be in the air).  Perhaps, it is the day you decided to clean out all the many years of clutter you have in your place (parting with all those boxes that have been taped up since you lived in two or three residences prior).  Perhaps, your office desk could use a little help….how many pens and highlighters do you REALLY need? And, shouldn’t you finally file all those loose papers in the bottom of your desk drawer?  Let’s make today a day of new beginnings……..

Monday Gets a Fresh Start

When we really, wholeheartedly commit to making a change in our lives, we shouldn’t think of it being just another chore or drudgery, but rather an opportunity to ultimately transform our lives for the better.  It can sometimes be an experience like getting ready to embark on a long trip to a place we’ve never been before or perhaps, one we haven’t visited in a long time.  We are a little anxious and may even consider not going; but we force ourselves to continue because we know ‘once we get there,’ it will be great.   That’s how you should think of making a difference in your life and making it a better place to be for yourself.

Perhaps, you thought of “visiting” this place several times; but something always got in the way and you didn’t quite make it to your final destination.  So this time, let’s start small and have a good “itinerary” so we don’t get lost.  If you want to start a new diet, start by just eliminating one of the bad things from your daily intake and replace it with one that is exceptionally good for you.  Then, next Monday do the same thing.  Before you know it, you will be feeling so much better that you look forward to each Monday and the positive changes you need to make.  Food should be something that nourishes our body…..not something that does a demolition job on our organs.

If the clutter in your life is dragging you down, start with just one box, one drawer, one anything!!    I know it doesn’t sound like much; but if you tackle one every Monday; and you start with today, that’s 30 containers you will have de-cluttered by the time 2013 rolls around!!  I think you will be surprised by how much stress it reduces too.  Perhaps, you might even consider donating some of that discarded stuff.   IMAGINE that!!  You de-cluttered, de-stressed AND you made a difference!

Maybe at your office, you decide to come up with one small idea every Monday that might make a difference at your workplace.  Maybe this week, you’ll start with cleaning up your own office workspace area and next week, you’ll organize the kitchen area.  Maybe you’ll think of a way to save some money for your office.  Perhaps, recycling all the cans and bottles from the kitchen or have a board to post coupons for everyone to share.  What changes can you make in the supplies that you use that might save some money?  How much paper do you waste in just one week?  All of these things will be appreciated by your employer, and it’s always fun to create a team of your fellow work mates to be a part of the process AND the success.

What makes us stumble in all the tasks that we swear we will start on Monday?  Is that just a human trait or has it just become a bad  and lazy habit for each of us?  Do we set ourselves up to begin something with great enthusiasm on the outside….but the inside is ready to sabotage the very first step?  I wish I could answer that question because I often suffer greatly in some of the “beginnings” that I plan to start for myself.

 But…..not today!!  Make some changes…make a difference….in yourself and the world around you.

So…..what are YOU going to change today??!!  Anyone have suggestions of how to help others succeed?  I am cheering for you.  Hope you will “cheer” for me too.

But….most importantly……Know from the start that YOU MATTER!  I’m sure you can make some new and exciting changes happen.

Hope you have a great Monday!

Make it the best one yet!…It could become a wonderful and enjoyable habit for you!

Smiles,

                                                                 Nancy

Monday Gets Respectful of the Elderly

This is a picture of a sweet little human being that I pass by almost daily.  If you look closely, at the very end of the sidewalk alley, you can barely see her little being in the shadow of the trees.  This is a true representation of what I perceive to be her daily feeling of existence….just a tiny little speck on this earth!  I took the picture far away because even though I don’t know her, I respect her and want to protect her from harm.  Each day when I pass her, I call out “Good Morning” to her; but most days, I get no reply.  Only rarely, do I hear this tiny little voice, a sound that would be the voice of a hummingbird if they could talk, reply “good morning”.  So far, I have only heard it twice.  And, each time, I feel myself lifted as if on wings and I have to restrain myself from running to her and hugging her and thanking her for the gift she gives me.

I know she has put up walls because of being fearful of our undependable community situation and the harm that come from “letting strangers in”.  Each time she responds, I feel that I have given her a little security to hold onto that times will get better.

I am not sure “her story” but somehow I feel it is filled with many years of loneliness and sadness and fear.  However, I have conceived hopes for her that she has a family that will take care of her one day when her little body becomes even more fragile and frail.  And that they come to visit her at least once a week even now.  My mind’s visions includes them bringing her flowers that she can plant in her well-tended garden that she is bent over every day, watering and nurturing with love and enjoyment.  I project that she has grandchildren too that hug her and sit next to her as she quietly reads them a story.  These are the bubble thoughts that go through my mind each day as I pass….I don’t want anyone to pop them!!!

Unfortunately, I hear the words of John Prine’s old 70’s song creep through,  “Old People just grow lonesome, Waiting for someone to say, “Hello in there, Hello” and they start to pierce my bubble with each encounter.

Do you ever pass someone who gives you this feeling?  Maybe it’s a neighbor or someone sitting at a park bench waiting for a bus?  Maybe, it’s even someone that is part of your family that you have put on the bottom of your list to visit?  So, today, here is what you can do…..

Monday Gets Respectful of the Elderly

Giving less than 10 seconds of your day can make a difference in someone’s day.  There are many elderly that are very lonely and would feel like a million bucks if they felt someone cared about them and took the time to acknowledge their presence and “throw” them a smile or a “hello”.  These lyrics by Prine keep echoing in my head and I think they say it best……..

“So, if you’re walking down the street sometimes

And spot some hollow, ancient eyes

Please don’t pass ’em by and stare

As if you didn’t care, instead say Hello in there,

Hello.”

They Matter….and You Matter too!

This is a video from You Tube that I hope “imbeds” in your head the need to make a difference and show the elderly that we care.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RfwGkplB_sY&feature=em-share_video_user

Happy Monday!

Smiles,

Nancy

Monday Gets To be A Good Listener

A blank page in front of you is so daunting……….

You think of all the words you know and somehow you can’t fit them together to make a single sentence.  Is it that we have TOO much to say?!!  Or…nothing at all.   I started feeling like the Scarecrow from the Wizard of Oz without a brain as I sat here trying to decide what topic Monday would bring.

As I was scratching my head with “nary a thought”, my sweet dog, Tramp, came and laid his head on my lap and I realized how, with only a vocabulary of 25 or so words, he was amazingly able to communicate very clearly.  He is a friend who tells me he loves me without speaking a word.  Perhaps, that is what us two-legged creatures  have lost.  The ability to be gentle in our communication and show others how we feel….without texts or emails or photoshop-ed pictures or a video on YouTube!!

I remember watching my parents, who were married for 55 years before one of them passed.  They would look at each other in a way that you knew without a shadow of a doubt that they loved each other, and their hearts would be together forever.  No words…..just loving looks and smiles.  No fancy gifts….but rather daily demonstrations that they cared about the other.  “Giving and Taking” was an ever revolving cycle that passed from one to the other.  They did it with such ease and loving energy.   You felt if you stood between them that you might be zapped by an invisible ray of love that would emit like an old sci-fi flick might demonstrate with lightning bolts.

I need to practice that kind of demonstration of caring more often.  We all get so anxious to “tell our own stories” that we forget to listen to what others have to say.  And thereby, really showing them that we care about the special person that they are and what they have to share.  It seems Good Listeners are hard to find.  OK….here’s your Monday challenge.

 Monday Gets to be a Good Listener.

When someone is talking to you today…..don’t think about your own stories or moments that you have experienced that match theirs.  Instead….just listen and comment about them.  Let them know, at that very moment, that you care only about them and what they have to say 100%.  Think this sounds easy??!!  Good Luck!  You’re human and you will find your tongue is hurting by the end of the day from biting it to keep from muttering your own exciting tale.  However…what you will find is that you don’t walk away feeling you only got part of their story.  Instead, you will leave knowing them a little better and they will feel that they are very important and that they matter to you.  And….that’s really what it’s all about, right?  If we could live today and every day like that, the world would be a much better place.

So….at day’s end, maybe stop to reflect how you feel.

I hope you feel you have made someone’s day a little brighter just by listening.

Didn’t cost you a dime either!

I hope that you realize that You Matter too.

Your unselfishness and humbleness are gifts that you can share any day…not just Monday.

Make Monday special……just like you!

 Smiles,

Nancy

Monday Gets Historical

Have you realized that as you are cruising around during each day that you are passing buildings or trees or houses or structures that are filled with history…some are 50+ years old, some 100+ years old….some even more advanced in age.  Don’t you wish they could talk?  I decided to share with a few that I came across today.  They are all part of history and should be given the respect they deserve to have survived so long.

This sign indicates this road area was part of the Route 66 trail (now known as Santa Monica Blvd in Los Angeles).  Route 66 served as a major path for those who migrated west, especially during the Dust Bowl of the 1930s, and it supported the economies of the communities through which the road passed. People doing business along the route became prosperous due to the growing popularity of the highway.  Next to the sign is an old neon sign that has its own history for the early 60s, a well-known donut stop in L.A.

Here’s the gates of the studio area that is today known as The Lot.  The studios were built in 1920 and in 1928 they were known as the Pickford-Fairbanks Studios where classics like The Thief of Bagdad and Robin Hood were filmed.  In 1933, Lucille Ball played a slave girl in her first movie, Roman Scandals.  Since that time it has had actors like Marilyn Monroe, Clark Gable, Frank Sinatra, Marlon Brando, Laurence Olivier, Eddie Murphy, Bruce Springsteen, Tom Hanks, Sandra Bullock and many others stroll thru these gates to create the Hollywood magic of movies, TV and sound recordings.  Sadly, a big section of this amazing walk in history is now just a pile of dirt as it makes room for space to build more technologically-updated space and creates a venue for the next generation of talent of Hollywood.

Can’t come to Hollywood without visiting the infamous Pink’s Hot Dogs.  A landmark on LaBrea since 1939 when it was just a large wheeled push cart and hot dogs sold for 10 cents.  It has changed a bit since the beginning days—hot dogs are now $3.45; but still in the same place and still draws crowds every day.  You can go by here at 10 in the morning or 10 at night and there is ALWAYS a line waiting to partake of their scrumptious hot dogs!

A favorite of mine is the old Charlie Chaplin Studios built around 1917 when the area was nothing but acres and acres of orange groves.  “The Little Tramp” kept his movie crew busy over the next two decades creating classics like Modern Times, City Lights and The Great Dictator.  Now, the lot is the home of another mark in history—Jim Henson Productions, which gave us the beloved Kermit the Frog, Miss Piggy and the other Muppets.

What an amazing conglomerate of many interesting and groundbreaking moments in history.  As we look back, we wonder what life must have been like in this area in the early 1900s.  Hundreds of orange trees growing everywhere.  Some of the eucalyptus trees in this area look like they are even hundreds of years old.  Amazing times for sure!  Difficult times too! There are a lot of bungalows around these historical landmarks that were built by the studios to house the actors.  Some of the places have nice patios in the back that were once areas where they kept a few horses for the actors to ride to the studios.  How different in a town that now boasts it has more cars registered in the county than people.

It’s important to stop and appreciate these relics that are around us.  I’m sure you have your own historical places in the town where you live. We need to take care of these special places and show them the respect they deserve for withstanding many “battles” in their lifetime.

 So Monday Gets Historical.

Take time to appreciate the old structures and their beauty.

Many amazing craftsman’s art is being preserved for future generations to appreciate and experience.

Look at nature’s creations too that continue to reach to the sky.

Within walking distance, I am sure you can find many treasures.

So take a walk.  See the beauty.   Experience days gone by.  And along the way take time to remember your own history and the “good ole days”

Hope it’s a history-appreciation Monday for you.

Smiles,

Nancy

Monday gets Thankful for the Memories

When I was walking my dog, Tramp, yesterday, I realized something interesting about myself.  By writing this Blog each week, it makes me stop to reflect about my life and makes me more appreciative of where I am in my journey today.  I know the many thoughts cross my mind daily; but writing them down adds value and nourishment to their existence and gives them a feeling of abundance.

I have always been one to appreciate small things; but somehow, every little thing I encounter now, seems so much more important.  I wonder what would happen if we allowed school-aged children to have a time in their daily lessons to reflect about their day.   No grade to be given or even any kind of judgment or revealing to others….just a moment to acknowledge their difficulties or happiness for the day.  I bet we would have a society of much more well-balanced individuals.

Do you take time to write your thoughts in a journal?  Probably everyone had a diary at some point in their lives.  I wish I had done more of it.  There are things when I was younger that I have just vague memories of that I would like to recall more details.  Wouldn’t it be nice if everyone kept journals?  If my Grandmother had kept a journal, I would love to be able to read it now.  She lived to be 96 and told tales of her life of leaving Virginia in a covered wagon to move to Tennessee.  What an adventure!   What a great treasure it would have been to have something like that to pass onto other generations! Hmmmmm….well, I didn’t take a covered wagon; but I did cross the country to move to California.  Guess that counts for a bit of adventure too…And I have pictures to go along with the documenting of the journey.

Perhaps, you should consider starting the habit of taking notes of your daily life.  Maybe it will help you realize how many good things come your way.  Or perhaps, it will be something that you can read ten years from now and recall some really special moments.  Or maybe, your children or your grandchildren will read it some day and “get to know you” a little better.  I bet iPhones even have an App for the process!   Whatever you do, don’t let the precious moments get lost.

Let’s see what can we call this Monday??

I know…let’s call it

Monday Gets Thankful for the Memories

Hope you take the time to reflect on some of the special times that have happened in your life.  Maybe call someone that you haven’t talked to in ‘many moons’ to reminisce about some good memories.

It’s another wonderful Monday….Make it a good memory!!

Smiles, Nancy