BESSHAILE   47,127
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December 1st - 31 days to create a mind-shift

Saturday, December 01, 2012

I'm SO close to goal. I've been futzing around weight loss for SO long. I'm getting bored with the denial aspect of this process. I keep discovering blogs, posts, comments, ideas from OutThere that point to an attitude adjustment I really ought to make.

There was the SP article about research studying people who went on maintenance first and then on weight loss and how much better they did over the long haul - tracked a year later - than the people who went on the weight loss and then followed up with some weeks of maintenance eating. WOW.

Then there's the Spark Blogger who has only stepped on the scale 4 times this year! She's lost 71 lbs but she just does not go there - she's concentrating, every day, on healthy eating.

There was that Other Spark Blogger who said she looks every bite and asks "Is this something that will fuel my body with nourishing food?" Not - can I fit this into my daily caloric intake ... which, I confess, I do, with the help of my School Marm Left Brain and her list making, system fooling, rule breaking sneaky self ... prodded by impish Wild Child Right Brain - who is always looking for blueberry donuts or chocolate.

I think it's time for a mind-shift. I think it's time to look at things from a different perspective. I think it's time I stopped focusing on what it takes to lose weight and push my brain over to the What It Takes To Live A Healthy Life table - where perhaps I can feast upon much wiser choices.

As I get closer to that joy filled day of possibilities - January 1 - and New Year's Resolutions - I want to ponder the options and come up with something different - and perhaps, something more lasting. We shall see. It will be fun!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SHEILA1505 12/1/2012 11:39AM


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DAWN14163 12/1/2012 10:01AM

    I have the same issues - I know I should focus on the "healthy lifestyle" rather than simply losing weight, but I love The "bad" foods too much to be able to give them up completely. But I do feel focussed at the moment and I'm determined not to go stupid with food this Christmas (usually my downfall). Good luck over the next few weeks!
emoticon emoticon

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JLITT62 12/1/2012 8:55AM

    Always love hearing your thoughts. Yup, I'm real close too, but I feel I'm mostly on the right track. The next month will be challenging tho . . . but we're up to the challenge!

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What's the Plan? - another Left Brain / Right Brain conversation

Thursday, November 22, 2012

I thought you'd like to listen in on my School Marm Left Brain and my Wild Child Right Brain as they get ready for this Food Fest of a Day.

emoticonLB Happy Thanksgiving to you! How do you feel?

emoticonRB Thanks, pretty good. How do you Think?

emoticonLB LOL It's not HOW I think but WHAT ... and I think we look pretty durn good compared to a year ago - which was an improvement over the year before. Doin' good girlfriend

emoticonRB You know what? That's just how I feel too. I'm really proud of how slim I look and I really love that sparkly shirt we bought

emoticonLB Yeah - even though we DON'T NEED ANY MORE CLOTHES! I think we look good in it too, though. So. I am thinking also about how to keep on looking this good. I have a plan.

emoticonRB Why am I not surprised. I hope it isn't a Nothing Good To Eat plan

emoticonLB of Course not. I wouldn't ruin Thanksgiving for us. My plan is this. Let's figure out how many calories/points a modest thanksgiving dinner is and then decide how to eat around it the rest of the week. AND figure out how much more exercise we're going to have to get in to counter the "weight" of that dinner.

emoticonRB ...uh. OK. There will still be pie, right?

emoticonLB Absolutely. And thigh meat and dressing - but .. how about skipping the gravy?

emoticonRB What about the jello?

emoticonLB You betcha.

emoticonRB And cranberry sauce?

emoticonLB If you want it.

emoticonRB hmmm. and wine?

emoticonLB yep

emoticonRB Well. It doesn't look like I'll have to give up anything. what's the catch?

emoticonLB I think we might pass on the whipped cream with our pie.

emoticonRB well... okay. I'm always sort of sick by pie time anyway

emoticonLB And if you decide to NOT put butter on your roll - that saves something ... but that one is up to you. I've factored it in.

emoticonRB What about the surprise dish our guests are bringing?

emoticonLB I've factored that in. Plus the hour of housework we have to do and the 2 mile after dinner walk we'll take.

emoticonRB So. what's the damage?

emoticonLB Well - dinner will be about 2400 calories or 50 points. give or take

emoticonRB oh. that's a lot

emoticonLB It will be less if you eat less turkey thigh - but that's about the only place I can see you could cut back and ... even I don't want to do that

emoticonRB Me neither.

emoticonLB But we can shave off 4 points by taking that after dinner walk and cleaning this house - the floor looks awful!

emoticonRB LOL but we always do that anyway.

emoticonLB Yes - we do. But listen - this means we have oatmeal with apples for breakfast and only carrots and apples the WHOLE rest of the day.

emoticonRB I'm good with that.

emoticonLB I'm glad. It also means we only have 15 bonus points and 10 activity points .... about 1,000 calories of wiggle room the rest of the week and there will be ALL THAT PIE in the house.

emoticonRB Couldn't we give some of that away?

emoticonLB Yes! We can! And I plan to cook only enough mashed potatoes to eat up in this one meal. No Leftovers of that. You know that - it's not really this one big meal that causes so much damage. It's all the aftermath. The snacking. The pie for breakfast.

emoticonRB Yeah. I know. I wish ...

emoticonLB Don't go there. It's NOW. and it's HERE and TODAY deserves as much fun and attention and enjoyment as ANY Yesterday!

emoticonRB Okay. I won't go there. Besides, I'm looking forward to getting to know the K's better.

emoticonLB Me too. And sharing the beautiful autumn colors with two artists. Won't they love the views and the colors and the fresh air smell?

emoticonRB Yeah - I'm so thankful we could invite them this year. And really really thankful it's such a pretty day.

emoticonLB I'm thankful too - for the opportunity to have a smaller feast.

emoticonRB LOL I bet.

emoticonLB and we'll be taking long walks on Saturday and Sunday and maybe even going to the gym on Friday. We can rack up some exercise points this weekend. But we really have to eat only healthy nourishing food the rest of the week - in appropriate sized portions.

emoticonRB Yeah yeah yeah. I understand. But talk to me about THAT later because ... I can't care about Saturday when there's today to live in. Remember "It's NOW. and it's HERE and TODAY deserves as much fun and attention and enjoyment as ANY tomorrow!

emoticonLB Touche! And thanks for having this talk with me. I'm really THANKFUL for it. I love you, you know.

emoticon RB I'm thankful for it too. Love ya right back

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SHAROND52 11/24/2012 6:25AM

    That is great! I love LB and RB.

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BESSHAILE 11/23/2012 7:36AM

    Just a report to let you know that LB and RB did great yesterday - No Pie in the house - no whipped cream either so nothing snuck into my morning coffee. Just enough turkey and mashed potatoes to make a turkey shepherd's pie for dinner and this great meal will be just a memory.

Thanks everyone, for your kind support of my bicameral brain. emoticon

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FLAMENM 11/22/2012 11:16AM

    I LOVE this!
Way to go LB and RB.

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SHEILA1505 11/22/2012 9:45AM

    I hope you managed to talk yourselves into enjoying TG safely :)

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MSLZZY 11/22/2012 7:36AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon
Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

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what's with all the candy in the house - a conversation between Left Brain and Right Brain

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

yes. it's true. I am now 4.4 lbs away from my goal weight, 2.2 lbs from not having to pay for WW meetings and I've got freakin' CANDY in my kitchen!!!

There's no mystery about why I am not losing weight. The mystery is why I am eating the trash food that's keeping me stuck here - why I even bring it into the house!!

so let's talk to those twin selves, School Marm Left Brain and Wild Child Right Brain.

LB So, sweetie, how are you

RB Don't sweetie me.

LB Whoa, Nellie. What are you so angry about?

RB I hate getting older. I hate it that I'm not 14 again and looking forward to going to the Christmas Dance

LB But you didn't go to the Christmas dance. In fact, you didn't get asked to any dances at all.

RB I hate that too. I hate that my hopes and dreams didn't come true and now I'm an old lady and they'll never come true

LB Wait a minute. LOTS of dreams came true. You wanted to live in a Little House in the Big Woods and you got to. How many people can say that?

RB I did that 37 years ago.

LB So - do you want to do it now?

RB Of COURSE not. I want to be 37 years younger.

LB Too bad. That doesn't happen.

RB That doesn't mean I don't want it.

LB So what else do you want.

RB I want my mama to be young and have her own house, not be lying in a bed in a nursing home. I want her to still be in the house on The Boulevard - and I want to go play with her Christmas Tree

LB She hated Christmas trees and always made us wait for weeks to put it up. It was Daddy who loved the Christmas tree

RB Yeah, but he always ruined it for us by having a meltdown at Christmas and making everybody weep. Mama bought foil covered candy balls to hang on the tree

LB Yeah - and look how fat she was.

RB I want to be 13 and eat foil-covered candy ornaments and .... and be thin too but not as much as I want the candy

LB But eating the candy won't make Mama young again or make us thin ... which we never were when we were teenagers. In fact, for half our adolescence we were very fat

RB You asked me what I wanted, not what was true

LB Well - but I am unhappy when you are unhappy - and I am VERY unhappy right now so you must be too. What's going on.

RB I don't want Lois to retire and I don't want Becky to have to quit working and I don't want anything to change at work and I want it to be last year and I want to get to do it all over again.

LB Oh Honey - don't worry about things passing - they really do still live inside you.

RB But it's so hard to look forward to anything. There's nothing to look forward to!

LB But there are WONDERFUL things to look forward to

RB like what?

LB Like more painting, and becoming a better drawer, and building a new fabulous work team to run a super great library, and being slender enough to wear a shirt tucked in with a belt around your waist.

RB eh

LB Like cooking that vegan spaghetti sauce that Ed loved so much and trying that vegan lasagna on Thursday!

RB oh. ... hmmm

LB Like Frances coming to visit THIS WEEKEND!

RB oh yeah. I forgot about that

LB Like redoing the kitchen some day - with new appliances that don't leak or freeze or burn food

RB yeah, that would be nice

LB Like getting together with C and M .. and maybe making it something regular

RB oh yes. I really do miss those women. I love them so.

LB So maybe you have some things to look forward to after all - even if there are changes you don't look forward to. do you remember when William went off to college - and you thought you were 40 years old with nothing left in life? And you thought you'd just have to live in that emptiness for the next 40 years?

RB Yeah. I remember that. It was horrible.

LB But it wasn't true, was it? Lots and lots and tons of things happened, didn't they? Fun things. Rewarding Things. Things you're proud of. Things you're happy about. Things that are still going on.

RB yeah that's true. I guess I've just been full of sadness about Things Ending and feeling like ... if I only ate some chocolate it would be Long Ago.

LB Looks like that to me. But I KNOW we don't want to gain weight back during this holiday season. What can we do to keep from trying to eat our way through it? How can I help?

RB I want to do some Christmas charity work this year. And I want a plan for the New Year. Now. so I feel safe.

LB I think I can find some Christmas charity to devote time to. and I think we can come up with A PLAN too. I like planning.

RB When?

LB well. I can call about the Christmas Mother today. And I can also call up C and M and schedule something fun to do. and remember, we have to plan that retirement party for Lois. I'll call everyone about that too. I can do that today - in fact, I better. We don't have much time to plan that. What do you think?

RB Hey - thinking is your department. I'm all about the feelings.

LB Well then, Feel better?

RB Yeah. Thanks

LB You're welcome.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MSLZZY 11/14/2012 9:45AM

    Quite a lot going on between LB and RB. Glad
you got it all sorted out. HUGS!
I'm 58 and the last little bird has flown
from the nest. Empty house rocks!

Comment edited on: 11/14/2012 9:46:26 AM

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ELRIDDICK 11/14/2012 7:48AM

  Thanks for sharing

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A walk and a recipe

Sunday, November 04, 2012

I love the walks across England that Chickchantal shares almost daily - the lush landscape and historic buildings make me swoon - and sigh "Oh to be in England ...." You can enjoy them yourself right here

And so, inspired by her I thought I would take you along on a walk I took yesterday. I have been incorporating some Other Things into my beloved exercise routine - outdoor things mainly and yesterday as I pondered going to the gym ... a visit that requires a 20 minute drive into town ... Himself suggested we take a walk. I asked him to take me up to Burkeville (which we never got to) and after lunch we piled into the truck.

Callie, the new baby puppy wanted to drive.

There are several ways to get to Burkeville and we chose the more round-about way that took us through large tree farms with big tracts of pines at different stages of growth. There is always something mysterious about stepping into a forest.

This year the reds came and went quickly. Most of the remaining color is in the low scrubby growth. Sumac and grape vines, honesuckle and broom.

Lots of broom, in fact and other pale grasses help hide the mighty hunters as they stalk the fields.

This is the origin of Occupacia Creek - where we swim in the summer. Today, only dogs wanted to swim.

I couldn't capture the magical light filtering through the yellow and green beech trees, alas. But stepping into this part of the woods was like stepping into a topaz world.

Here is a most unusual beech tree that was knocked over, sent up two suckers who joined together to form a bridge about 4 feet up their trunks

Where the plantings of trees are still new there are the most glorious views of the sky

Pools of water left after last week's rain reflect the sky as my dogs stop for a sip on the way back to the truck

Himself says it is a 4 mile hike but we walked for 2 hours so I suspect it is a little longer than that - and of course it was over rough tracks with plenty of up and down. After a while I while I was tired enough to want to go home, instead of taking the long way over a path-less forest floor, through Burkeville. Instead we retraced our steps and headed back to the truck. And how the wind blew blew blew. In the open spaces my jacket was too warm but in the shadows I was glad to have it.

We got home ravenous and I made the most delicious squash soup I thought I'd share the recipe - especially since it was so easy.

1 acorn squash
1 box of vegetable soup broth (or chicken if you prefer)
2 onions chopped
3 cloves of garlic minced
1 tbs oil
optional spices ... ginger and/or pumpkin pie spice

1 cut pumpkin in half and spray with cooking spray
2 place cut side down on a cookie sheet and bake 30 minutes in a 450 degree oven
3 flip over squash to cool while you saute onions and garlic in 1 tbs of oil till nicely brown (as brown as you like)
4 scoop out squash and place with onion/garlic mixture in a blender
5 pour in 1/2 box of broth and whir till smooth - adding more broth as needed
6 place contents of blender along with the rest of the broth in a sauce pan and reheat to desired temperature

Makes 6 cups

Nutritional info:Amount Per Serving

Calories 80.0
Total Fat 2.4 g
Saturated Fat 0.3 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.3 g
Monounsaturated Fat 1.7 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 630.6 mg
Potassium 336.2 mg
Total Carbohydrate 14.4 g
Dietary Fiber 2.1 g
Sugars 1.3 g
Protein 1.3 g
Vitamin A 11.6 %
Vitamin B-12 0.0 %
Vitamin B-6 9.1 %
Vitamin C 19.1 %
Vitamin D 0.0 %
Vitamin E 1.7 %
Calcium 3.7 %
Copper 4.2 %
Folate 5.4 %
Iron 5.4 %
Magnesium 7.2 %
Manganese 11.2 %
Niacin 2.9 %
Pantothenic Acid 3.5 %
Phosphorus 4.5 %
Riboflavin 1.1 %
Selenium 1.2 %
Thiamin 8.3 %
Zinc 1.4 %

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FIFIFRIZZLE 6/26/2013 3:13PM

    I loved Chicchantal's blogs too, but now they are set to private I can't drop by any more. Great recipe and walk.

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KANSASROSE67 11/14/2012 3:49PM

    Thanks for sharing your beautiful photos...sounds like a wonderful day!

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IFDEEVARUNS2 11/9/2012 8:22AM

    Sounds delicious! And I loved accompanying you on your walk.

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ALIHIKES 11/4/2012 11:29AM

    Great photos, what a beautiful place to walk. Loved the way the dogs joy was captured in the photos, they really enhanced the enjoyment! I'll try the soup recipe, thanks for sharing. emoticon

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SHEILA1505 11/4/2012 10:55AM

    Lovely day out Bess

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JJAQUES41 11/4/2012 10:49AM

    Thanks for sharing your afternoon with us, it was lovely!

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CHICCHANTAL 11/4/2012 10:25AM

    Fabulous colours, I just love the one of the dogs drinking. It's very hard to get the camera to pick up the colours if there's a lot of light and shade - if you're in the shade, the light just gets bleached out. This drives me nuts in forests.

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DAWN14163 11/4/2012 7:03AM

    What a fantastic place to walk! Beautiful. Thank you for sharing!

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MSLZZY 11/4/2012 6:55AM

    Great activity for both of you and the pups AND a
recipe sure to please my family.

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November's choice for my 12 in 12

Friday, November 02, 2012

And so the year slips into November, drawing the covers up around its shoulders as it prepares to go to sleep for the winter. It's also time to add the next to the last habit to my days and to look back a bit and asses how well those other habits have been integrated into my life.

There are only 2 habits left and for November I choose:

#11 Clean the kitchen every night.

This is an easy one for me to integrate because .... way last winter when I selected these 12 habits I started cleaning the kitchen every night. As I wrote back then,

I am a morning person and am often really tired at night. It's easy to get up at 5 and clean the kitchen - but seeing a dirty kitchen first thing in the morning starts my day off with a tiny bit of ugliness. How about starting it off with something pretty instead?

As soon as I'd written those words, though, I realized that it would be easy to just start doing this right away and now it's already a habit.And I was right. It's nice to walk into a spanking clean (at least as spanking clean as I can get it) kitchen and start making the morning coffee. There have been evenings when I've walked through the kitchen and thought "I'm too tired" but then the habit would pinch and I'd spend the few minutes to tidy things up. That is what a habit is for.

As I move into the holiday cooking time, it will be good to already be in the habit of cleaning up after myself. I expect it will make this stretch of time go much more smoothly.

As for the rest of my good habits - I must begin with a caveat. October has been a difficult month in spite of the many lovely events and pleasures that dotted the weeks. First off there is An Issue that needed to be dealt with - something I've dreaded - and, though I put on my big girl panties at last and peeled back the curtain, I was only able to let in some cleansing sunshine. It's better - but it's not done yet - and, alas, may never be done with - which is part of why this is such a difficult situation. Like humidity in the summer, this is something that will always have to be factored into the equation.

Also, we've been short staffed at work due to illness, making the work days feel sooooo long. In addition, I'm facing a huge staffing rearrangement - the consequence of time, as a senior staffer is retiring. I have been dreading and grieving over the shake-up because this particular team has worked so beautifully these past few years. Even though I can see wonderful developments arising from the staff alignment that's moving into place - I hate to see something old, successful and precious come to an end. Oh Yes. Then there was the storm. Yeah. Dread + Stress + Mild Grief = Difficult Month.

So I am cutting myself some serious slack on the habit forming stuff. Still, it is better to know how I've done before it all becomes a blur and I lose all the ground I've made this year

#1 Food Tracking

I have done so poorly at this I should give myself an F. Looking back at my track records I see I only tracked daily for one week. After that - once I had 'blown' it for the week ...usually by Saturday ... I just quit. Yes there was the 1200 calorie cheesecake (of which I ate only 1/2) and yes there was the wedding and the anniversary and the convention. Okay. So why am I so afraid to look at myself when I'm not being perfect? I think there is a serious SERIOUS issue here with self delusion. I want to see me as being a Good Girl and Not Making Mistakes and Knowing Better ... and a tracker that says I ate enough to feed a football team won't let me see that. But if I did eat that much, gosh - what's the point in saying "I did not write it down, so maybe I didn't really eat it" ... Like those jokes about Southern Virgins we told in the '60's. "I didn't get caught so I didn't do it..."


I think I need to come to peace with myself about what food and eating is all about and perhaps about why I am bothering to care about tracking and what I weigh and how I look and the entire body thing. I do care. I care because I want to be healthy. I care because I want to look good. But unfortunately I also care because I want to be a Good Girl but I want the food that makes me feel like a Bad Girl.

There's a focus on the wrong things and I am going to have to do some serious thinking, some deep soul searching, and realign the focus onto the positive issues. In fact - I need to get comfortable seeing me overeat - because I promise you, when I overeat I refuse to acknowledge it till later - in short - I won't look at me doing something I think I should not do ... even if I do it. I need to get comfortable looking at all of me if I ever want to get along with all of me - instead of getting blindsided by the chocolate-candy-eating me. It's time for the Left Brain School Marm to have a little chat with the Right Brain Wild Child and see if they can start working together again.

And so, even if my actual tracking activity earned such a low grade - the fact that I have explored what was going on before November got into full swing earns me a low, but passing grade this month - a D+

#2 Exercising - All the traveling I did this month interrupted my beloved weekly schedule and I missed weight training several times - but I got in lots of other activity - frequently deliberately substituted for the tried and true. I will give myself a B+

#3 Drink 6-8 cups of water every day - Eh. sometimes yes, too often not - but enough to earn a C

#4 The Charles Schwab list at work - I couldn't have made it through the month without that. There were a few days when I forgot and it just made things SO bad that I could not really function. It earns a B+

#5 Read my 5-year play every morning week - Which I did till last week and this - and I will blame that on travel and hurricanes and give myself a C

#6 Compliment someone on my staff every day - Every Day? hmmm. Perhaps 3 times a week. I wonder if every day is impractical and yet I fear if I don't hold on to the daily intention I will drift into forgetfulness. I will have to ponder this question. But ... I grade myself with another C

#7 Draw 20 minutes a day. - Surprisingly - I've kept up with this fairly well. I am not drawing every day because I am painting some too - and working on a 'project' that has kept my art supplies spread out on the dining room table all month. This has earned me an A-

#8 Select a big life goal and take one step towards it every day. - Okay - this is a tricky bit. If I want to be fit and slim and healthy and to develop my artistic skills ... all specific Previously Mentioned Habits and I do something towards even one of those Previously Mentioned Habits, then ... have I also fulfilled This Habit? Uh. The operative word is Select because if it's a habit did I select it? Well. My intention when I wrote these habits was to be conscious of my efforts and deliberate, not just lucky. In light of the Other Challenges of this month I will give myself a C

#9 Ditto at work - Same issue - same grade C

#10 Pray. - You can be sure I have done one heck-uva-lotta praying this month - praying for courage, praying for wisdom, praying for the storm to miss us - but not the daily thing I should have done and again - not the deliberate and scheduled way I intended when I first plotted out this scheme of habit forming behavior. But though I did not pray at scheduled times, my prayers were not just the plea for pleasure selfish ones. There was enough of the true prayer this month to justify a grade of B+

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FORBANDE 11/4/2012 6:03AM

    What a great blog! The time you have taken to list and then evaluate is very powerful. You are really "putting yourself out there".

As I read through this, I saw the word habit repeated. This has really gotten me to think about the importance of making things habits versus "goals". Sometimes goals gives you a sense of completion. And while it is important, those things that we need to do forever should become habits. :) I really like this way of thinking.

Thanks so much for sharing! Good luck on your habits! I hope the changes at work turn out to be productive and a blessing.

Happy November!!

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MSLZZY 11/2/2012 10:02AM

    I think I'd find much the same thing if I put all my
habits under the microscope like you do. Let's
just call this being human. A new month is here.
Go exploring for a way to make it a success. HUGS!

Comment edited on: 11/2/2012 10:03:04 AM

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MAHGRET 11/2/2012 9:38AM

    Nice list of habits, this gives me something to really think about.

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