Monday, January 26, 2015

Say Yes Or No

When someone asks you a yes or no question, answer it simply.

Yes.    No.    Maybe.

Then wait. 

If there's a need for additional information, let them request it. You decide whether or not to share any more based on who's doing the asking.

It isn't necessary to volunteer details, embellish, make excuses, justify, describe your history or list reasons behind your decision. Most people don't want to hear them anyway. They probably just want the simple answer.

The people who matter most will likely be satisfied with the answers you give. Who cares about anyone else? Many are just nosy and only want the drama, the gossip, or the juicy details of your life. Giving extra information makes them think they are entitled to know everything about you. And it isn't their business.

Keep it simple. Resist the urge to offer explanations. Be confident in your decisions. You choose what to share with others. Be a little mysterious. The only person you have to prove anything to is yourself.

Don't underestimate me.
I know more than I say,
think more than I speak,
and notice more than you realize.”

Don't try to explain yourself to stupid people.
You aren't the jackass whisperer.”

Monday, January 19, 2015

Road Trip - Beach Time

Last week, I took my own advice and went on a road trip with someone fun. The destination was Orange Beach, Alabama and my sidekick was my sweet husband. We loved every minute, even though it was mostly cloudy and cool.

We spent one of the rainy days exploring the National Naval Aviation Museum at the home of the Blue Angels in Pensacola, Florida. They have added another building since we visited ten years ago, and now have over 55,000 sq. ft. of exhibits covering early flight to modern aircraft and space exploration. I took over a hundred photos of historic planes and informative exhibits. If you've never been, I highly recommend making time to go.  It's free, except for the IMAX films and Simulators.

I'm all relaxed now after beach walks, shopping, and amazing seafood at our favorite spots. Mikee's Seafood and DeSoto's in Gulf Shores served us grilled amberjack, fried red snapper, pan seared mahi-mahi, and fried shrimp, which were mouth-watering with very reasonable prices.

I adore going to the beach, especially in the off season when there are no crowds. The sound of the sea always calms me, the expanse of sky and water inspires me and brings me joy.

Smell the sea, and feel the sky,
let your soul and spirit fly.
--Van Morrison

Monday, January 12, 2015

Adventure Awaits


:  an exciting or remarkable experience  
:  a bold, risky, or unusual undertaking

Life should not be boring. Planned, unplanned, big, and small adventures should happen often. Don't miss them when they come along.

Most people think of adventure as travel, and there's an entire world of magical places to see. Go when you can. But, you don't have to be Indiana Jones chasing historic finds, or Jack Sparrow sailing the wild seas. Adventure awaits in your recliner, in your back yard, and in your hometown.

"There's no end to the adventures we can have 
if only we seek them with our eyes open."  
~Jawaharial Nehru

You see, it all begins in your mind. You can make even the most mundane activity into a marvelous adventure by changing the way you see or do it. Slow down, then look around for opportunities that present themselves. If they don't appear, make your own.

Say yes to new things.  Learn or try something inspiring.
Change your surroundings.  Redecorate. 
Listen to a different genre of music.  Create or admire art. 
Experiment with food choices.
Go on a road trip with someone fun. 
Take a wrong turn now and then.
Have an escapade!  Laugh and be silly.

The world is full of marvels.

Monday, January 5, 2015

Keeping What Matters

The new year is always a time for me to clean.  I'm taking down holiday decorations, tossing things I won't use, and making our home fresh and cozy for the winter.  It's a new start and a clean slate.

One of my resolutions each year is to get rid of clutter.  I try to use the one thing in, one thing out rule.  But then I watch Antiques Roadshow and see someone who kept two party invitations from the 1930's that are now worth $25,000.  Nevertheless, it's easier now that I'm retired, because I am more aware of the things I use and love.

Other resolutions are to evaluate what works and what doesn't in my life, which adventures I will pursue this year, and who will be along for the ride.  It's not always physical items; people and situations can weigh me down as well.  Several years ago, I found this quote to help me remember that I choose my own path.

"Surround yourself with people who make you happy.
People who make you laugh, 
who help you when you're in need.
People who genuinely care.
They are the ones worth keeping in your life.
Everyone else is just passing through."
~Karl Marx

I apply this statement to people, things, and habits.  They all come and go, and have a purpose for a time.  Why would I hang on to something that has outlived its usefulness?  Or some negative person who is just passing through my life?  I only want what brings me joy and inspires me. I want to keep what matters most to me.


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