2015: Blogosphere and ME

It’s A New Year

I am excited to begin 2015 focused on:

  • improving the quality of this blog, and
  • uplifting ME spiritually, emotionally and physically.

Blogosphere

Because of the holidays, family member illness, and the death of Hubby’s last remaining aunt, I had to step away from blogging for the past several months.  Life is getting back to normal and I am happy to reconnect with my blogging friends.

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This month, January 13, I will celebrate my second anniversary as a blogger.  This blogging experience has opened the door to new experiences, new places and new people both in this country and other parts of the world.

Virtually, via blogging friends, I:

  • traveled to other countries as well as different places throughout the United States;
  • received helpful information on nutrition, meditation, exercise, alternative health care; and
  • entered a new world of books, poetry, religion and music.

Thank you, blogging friends, for uplifting ME spiritually, emotionally and physically these past two years.

Finally, thanks to the information shared in a WordPress recent post,“Make 2015 A Great Blogging Year,” I have the tools to take my blog to the next level.

ME

Hubby, family, friends, and bloggers have all served to improve the quality of my life.  I am grateful.  But, recent acquired self-acknowledgement and self-awareness skills, guided me to the recognition that this responsibility is solely mine.

To improve ME in 2015, I will:

  • Nurture my Healing Container Garden as it brings peace, bliss, and tranquility into my space.

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  • Write daily notes to place in My Gratitude Jar, to express gratitude for the good things in life.

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  • Seek out those things which serve to keep ME grounded and directed in a positive way.

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  • Hone my photography skills because it is always good to learn something new and interesting.
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Camera Purchased Two Years Ago – Still a Work-In-Progress
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Upgraded Camera – Gifted to ME – Christmas 2014
  •  Incorporate healthy recipes into my menus and “go to” the healthy eating cookbooks purchased over the past five years and are never used.
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A Small Sampling of Healthy Eating Good Books
  • Research and explore different options to address my health issues.

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  • Continue to value and appreciate the love of my life, Hubby, as we approach our 55th Anniversary on April 11, 2015.

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  • Remember there are always new things for ME to explore.   

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2015, Here I Come Ready Or Not!

Freedom Friday – November 14, 2014

 

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Freedom Friday

Today

I will LET GO. 

I will FREE MY MIND.

I will SEEK SOLITUDE IN STILLNESS.

I will OPEN MY HEART to RECEIVE the GIFTS of

CALMNESS, QUIETNESS and LIGHTNESS

— SeasonedSistah2 —

Sending a shout out to blogging friend, Iman, for encouraging me to step outside my comfort zone.  This is my second attempt at being poetic.

And, I confess that SeasonedSistah2 is neither a writer nor poet.  But, I only share what represents MY AUTHENTIC VOICE.

Also on this Freedom Friday, I exercise the right to say:

“Thank You to all my blogging friends for  enlightening and expanding my world.”

Blogging 101, Love Your Theme

Today’s Assignment

“Try out at least three other themes — even if you’re happy with the one you first chose.  Try one you’re drawn to, and one you would never use.”

If I have multiple things to choose from; I have to look, re-look and look several more times before making a decision.  I took more time than necessary viewing the different theme options to complete this assignment.

After trying three, I concluded that I was happier with the current theme.  I wrote about this for the Day 1 Assignment, “Say Your Name.”

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My question??????   HOW DO I GET THE OLD THEME BACK?

Confession, I plead guilty to being computer and blogosphere challenged.

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Blogging 101, Day 1: Say Your Name

The Day 1 Assignment was to “edit your title and tagline.” On January 13, I will celebrate my Two Year Blogging Anniversary.

I did change the original theme, but my title and tagline remains the same.

 Current Theme

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The current theme was custom designed by a designer that I found while surfing through blogosphere.  The fee was nominal; and, I like the overall appearance.

The pastel soft pink/white background coloring as well as the title written in cursive depicts the softness and warmth that I wanted to convey in my blog.

My blog title came from a book club, Seasoned Sistah, that I was active in for a number of years.  The club disbanded shortly after I retired to Florida in 2010; and, I decided to use the name when I began blogging in 2013.  With the approval of the three former members, I added the “2” to separate my blog from the book club’s name.

My Tagline, Today is Better than Yesterday, is the way I choose to live in this last season of my life.

I AM open to change and either during or at the end of Blogging 101, I may decide to make a change.

 

Blogging 101: Your Dream Reader

Today’s Assignment

“Publish a post for your dream reader, and include a new-to-you element in it.”

Dear President Obama:

I cast my first vote in 1960 at the age of 18; and, thereafter, I continued to vote in every Presidential election.  Because people suffered and died fighting for our rights to vote, I felt it was my obligation to cast my vote.  But, I never saw any value in voting during the mid-term elections.

Instantly, when you, the Junior Senator from Illinois, announced your candidacy, I became a political junkie.  Though I donated, volunteered, and voted; truthfully, I didn’t think you could win the Presidency.  

You won.  And I continued to support you by donating, volunteering and voting in the 2010, 2012, and 2014 elections.  Voting for the first time in mid-term elections because I saw the value in supporting your administration and policies.

A Black man in the White House, led me to believe we were moving toward overcoming the racial divide in this country.  But, the divide appears wider and even goes beyond race.   And, I was sad.

I was saddened that you are disrespected, hated, and demonized by so many.

I was saddened that members of Congress met on the evening of your first inauguration and vowed to make you a one-term President.

I was saddened that there are people who fail to see the value in providing affordable health care to the uninsured and underinsured.

I was saddened by those who think it’s okay to deny and/or suppress our right to vote.

I was saddened with proposals to privatize and/or voucherize Medicare.

I was saddened by our failure to deal with gun control.

I was saddened by the inability to deal with the Illegal Immigration issues.

But, I was uplifted after reading your November 7 letter:

“Yvonne, the hardest thing in politics is changing the status quo.  The easiest thing is to get cynical.  The Republicans had a good night on Tuesday, Yvonne — but believe me when I tell you that our results are better because you stepped up, talked to your family and friends, and cast your ballot. I want you to remember we’re making progress.  There are workers who have jobs today who didn’t have them before.  There are millions of families who have health insurance today who didn’t have it before.  There are kids going to college today who didn’t have the opportunity to go to college before. So don’t get cynical, Yvonne.  Cynicism didn’t put a man on the moon.  Cynicism has never won a war, or cured a disease, or built a business, or fed a young mind.  Cynicism is a choice.  And hope will always be a better choice.I have hope for the next few years, and I have hope we’re going to accomplish together.”

Mr. President, I appreciate your taking the time to connect with me; and, I am grateful that my cynicism didn’t keep you out of the White House.  Thank you of this uplifting letter.

SeasonedSistah2

To My Readers:  Now, I realize this letter went out to millions, but I feel less cynical and more hopeful after reading it.  

Freedom Friday – November 7, 2014

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The outcome of the 2014 mid-term election is disappointing.  But, acceptance and awareness tells me not to dwell on the past.

So, today, I choose to live in the present moment with a smile.

My youngest granddaughter, Cupcake, always brings happiness and joy into my space.  Regrettably, she lives two thousand miles away. However, when I pull up her photos on my computer screen:

I Smile.

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I, Even, Laugh Out Loud

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Handbook for Life

While purging files last week, trying to declutter my office space; I, came across the Handbook for Life (author unknown).  A breast cancer support group friend sent it to me several years ago.

Rather than filing this document again and sending it back into hiding for another two years, remaining unseen until the next filing purge, I chose to share the 39 tips in this post.

After the last tip, I give an honest assessment of where My Life is in relation to the four categories presented in the handbook:  (1) Health, (2) Personality, (3) Society, and (4) Life.

Handbook for Life

Health

  1. Drink plenty of water.
  2. Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a beggar.
  3. Eat more food that grow on trees and plants and eat less food that is manufactured in plants.
  4. Live with the 3 E’s — Energy, Enthusiasm and Empathy.
  5. Make time to pray.
  6. Play more games.
  7. Read more books than you did last year.
  8. Sit in silence for at least 10 minutes each day — Meditate.
  9. Sleep for at least 7 hours.
  10. Take a 10-30 minute walk daily.  And while you walk, smile.

Personality

  1. Don’t compare your life to others.  You have no idea what their journey is all about.
  2. Don’t have negative thoughts or things you cannot control.  Instead invest your energy in the positive present moment.
  3. Don’t overdo it.  Keep your limits.
  4. Don’t take yourself so seriously.  No one else does.
  5. Don’t waste your precious energy on gossip.
  6. Dream more while you are awake.
  7. Envy is a waste of time.  You already have all you need.
  8. Forget issues of the past. Don’t remind your partner of his/her mistakes of the past.  That will ruin your present happiness.
  9. Life is too short to waste time hating anyone.  Don’t hate others.
  10. Make peace with your past so it won’t spoil the present.
  11. No one is in charge of your happiness except you.
  12. Realize that life is a school and you are here to learn.  PROBLEMS ARE SIMPLY PART OF THE CURRICULUM THAT APPEAR AND FADE AWAY LIKE ALGEBRA CLASS BUT THE LESSONS YOU LEARN WILL LAST A LIFETIME.
  13. Smile and laugh more.
  14. You don’t have to win every argument.  Agree to disagree.

Society

  1. Call your family often.
  2. Each day give something good to others.
  3. Forgive everyone of everything.
  4. Spend time with people over the age of 70 and under the age of 6.
  5. Try to make a least three people smile each day.
  6. What other people think of you is none of your business.
  7. Your job won’t take care of you when you are sick  Your friends will.  Stay in touch.

Life

  1. Do the right thing!
  2. Get rid of anything that isn’t useful, beautiful or joyful.
  3. God heals everything.
  4. However good or bad a situation is, it will change.
  5. No matter how you feel, get up, dress up, and show up.
  6. The best is yet to come.
  7. When you awake in the morning, Thank God for it.
  8. Your Inner Most is always happy.  So be happy.

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My Life in Relation to the 39 Healthy Living Tips

Of the 10 tips related to Health, I gave a positive response to 8 out of 10.

I didn’t fare as well with Personality, of the 14 tips, 9 still are a part of my life.  In this area, I continue as a work-in-progress.  But, less than five years ago, I lived with the negative thoughts and behaviors cited in all the 14 tips.

Of the 7 Society tips, I have overcome 5 and 2 still remain.

Only 1 negative remains of the 8 Life tips, I live peacefully with the remaining 7 positive thoughts.

Finally,

  • responding to the statements in the Handbook for Life;
  • acknowledging the negatives in my life; and,
  • establishing a plan to reduce and/or eliminate my negative behaviors

brings me closer to living life to its fullest with a healthy mind, body and spirit.

 

 

 

Freedom Friday – October 24, 2014

Blogging friend, Iman, last week launched Freedom Friday writing, “It’s Freedom Friday, so I reserve the sole right to say what I have to say … .”

I decided to participate.  After all, I needed a day to freely express, WHATEVER!!, and why not on Freedom Fridays.

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So here goes….

Oops I Missed the Sign-up for Blogging 201

It’s Freedom Friday and, according to one definition, freedom means:

“I have the power or right to act, speak, or think as one wants without hindrance or restraint.”

Though Blogging 201 was closed when I attempted to sign up, I choose to exercise my right on Freedom Friday to complete the first assignment, which was to:

“Consider what you want to accomplish with your blog.  Write down three concrete goals you want to achieve.”

This assignment, hopefully, will lead to an improved blog before I begin my third year of blogging in January 2015.

Why I Blog

Almost two years ago, I initially decided to create this blog for:

  • Self-Education to access information shared by other bloggers who were living with either breast cancer, rheumatoid arthritis, or fibromyalgia.
  • Self-Management to distract and re-direct my attention from negative thoughts, emotional stress, and physical pain.

Blogging also helped, as a fill-in, for the lost of family and friends when we retired and relocated to Orlando in 2010.

Though, I have friends now and enjoy spending time with them, I still blog to:

  • Interact with diverse people;
  • Tour different places around the world; and,
  • Learn new things above and beyond my wildest expectations.

Because either my IPad, MacBook or Blog are always within reach; I have the ability, when I want, to:

  • Express Thoughts
  • Rant Opinions
  • Expand Awareness
  • View Events
  • Explore New Cultures
  • Visit Different Places
  • Meet New People
  • Network with Bloggers
  • Share Memories

All of the above satisfies my needs as a blogger.  And, I have no interest in gaining notoriety, becoming a leader in the field, or self-publishing a book.

My Ultimate Blog

I decided to take a critical look at my blog layout in preparation for completing this assignment.  I concluded that my blog needs a makeover to improve both the look and flow.  I hope to acquire new ideas and techniques, when I participate, in the Blogging 101 Class beginning November 3.

In addition to revamping this blog, I want to add photos to my posts.  So, I registered for the Photography 101 Class which, also, starts on November 3.

I am not concerned about the number of followers, but would like to keep the current ones.  I now see them as my blogosphere friends.

I plan to continue publishing three times per week.

Four Specific Goals

  1. Publish three times each week during November, December, and January.
  2. Spend 2-3 hours each week visiting my followers’ blogs, reading their posts, and commenting on their work, from now until April 1st.
  3. Establish a new weekly feature on my blog by December 31st and publish each week through June 30th.
  4. Create an editorial calendar for the next three months by November 1st.

Finally, I am grateful to:

  • Iman for inviting me to take part in Freedom Friday.
  • Blogging 201 for this assignment, even though, I crashed the course.

 

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