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Monday, March 14, 2016

#Monday Musings - Keeping Going Through Adversity



Last week I had a horrible bout of a 24 hour flu with a lovely visit to Vomitland (love that description. Thanks, Liz!) that rendered me weak and useless for a day or two. Now I have a head cold that I caught from the hubs. I just had a humongous nosebleed this morning due to my nose being so irritated. That added to Daylight Savings Time, and my awful menopausal hot flashes making it so hard to sleep, it's no wonder I am one cranky bit….er lady these past few days. 

All these physical challenges are wearing me down and yet, I still have lots to be grateful for. Being sick sure makes me appreciate being healthy. Keeping a positive attitude and a sense of humour is extra challenging, but worth the effort. Giving up and becoming a whiny drudge doesn’t help anything.

I remember my dear departed mother in her final years. She had many health challenges and was too frail to do a lot at the end of her life. I’m sure she would have liked to travel more as she always loved traveling in her younger years. Near the end she found it too tiring and difficult. 

Still, she enjoyed each day as best she could. I will always have memories of her sitting in her favourite chair in the sunroom, gazing down the hill in contentment at that gorgeous view of the Bras D’Or Lakes in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia. I can still imagine her chatting loudly on her speaker phone, catching up on the latest gossip or having a good laugh with a friend while my dad would listen in the background. Her humour, positive and strong spirit would always shine through, despite her physical frailty.
Here is a photo of my mom sitting in her favourite spot in her sunroom. This is the last photo I have of her so it's extra special to me.

I used to think my mother was so tough and invincible when I was growing up. She was proud and feisty, going for what she wanted, not taking no for an answer. She always told me to stand up for myself and not put up with crap from other people. I admired that about her as she was a true survivor who kept going through any adversity.

In keeping with these thoughts, this quote by Eleanor Roosevelt resonated with me this morning. 

In the long run, we shape our lives, and we shape ourselves.
The process never ends until we die.
And the choices we make are ultimately our own responsibility.
- Eleanor Roosevelt

My attitude shapes how I see things so I must work on remaining positive, despite the hard stuff that gets thrown at me. I can’t blame others or expect them to fix everything for me. I can’t let others run the show and tell me what to do all the time. I need to stand tough and believe in myself more. My attitude is up to me and so are my choices.

I’ve been given this brief gift of life and need to live each day with gratitude and a positive outlook, despite the challenges that will always be there. 

It’s ultimately my own responsibility as the Eleanor Roosevelt quote says so well.

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Postcard fun at Postcrossing.com



I have already written about my love of snail mail letter writing and even wrote a poem about it last year for the A-Z blog post challenge. 

L is for Letter Writing 
I’ve never been one to send postcards and usually prefer letters because postcards aren’t big enough for everything I want to say. Still, they are quick and fun to do so I have gotten addicted to the whole game of sending postcards at postcrossing.com

Postcrossing.com is a fun free site devoted to sending postcards and sharing with other members. There are also lots of fun stats for you stat-happy souls out there. There are also maps that show all the places in the world where I’ve received and sent cards.

They even have a forum with discussion threads. I haven't ventured into that yet. I'm still busy doing the cards.

First register at the site and create a profile where you can upload your photo and tell a bit about yourself.

You make a request and receive an address from a random person in the world. Before you send off your card, it’s a good idea to scan it and upload the photo of the front of your card so others will be able to see it at the website when the person receives the card.

Remember to add your special code which the recipient enters at postcrossing.com when they receive the card. It’s important to include the code as it means you will then receive a card from someone else in the world.

I recently learned a trick to share about languages using different symbols than our 26 letters. If they include their address in their language, instead of writing out the long English versions of their address, I copy and paste the original address that they give me into Word. I make the font a bit bigger, say about 14 points but not too large or it won’t fit on the address section of the card.  Then I print it, cut it out and glue it to the card. Much easier and probably it will get there faster, too.

Right now I’m only allowed to have six traveling postcards at one time. When a person receives my card, I am allowed to send another card. As I send more cards I will be allowed to have more traveling cards.

It can be expensive sending all these postcards. I tend to think of it as a guilty pleasure like fine coffee and chocolate, but without the calories. 

This site has me hooked and I’ve even started making collage postcards with my own photos which is great fun to do. Here is an example of a card I made.



If you enjoy snailmail, this site is addictive! Why not give it a try?

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Wordy Wednesday - The Many Sides of Facebook




I am writing a poem for this week’s Wordy Wednesday  prompt at Blog-A-Rhythm using the words irritate, instant, inspire and insight in the poem.



The Many Sides of Facebook

Facebook, you irritate me like a stone in my shoe!
I often wonder if there’s hope for you,
So fake and phony, so nasty and mean
Rude and obnoxious, and often obscene,

At the risk of sounding like a grump
Enough with the posts about Donald Trump
Enough with the gossip, enough with the fluff
I tell you Facebook, I’ve had enough!

I want to see cats, cats and cats galore
Isn’t that what Facebook’s for?
Or vintage photos and lovely quotes
Uplifting stories and encouraging notes,

In an instant , you can change, you can touch and inspire
With insight and kindness, I can’t help but admire,
Facebook, sometimes you’re really there
I love it when you show you care,

That’s the Facebook I want to see
Enough of all this stupidity!