Had to peruse my bookshelves for this one. I wasn’t sure I even had a repeat author. I immediately thought, nope I do not have one as I am a nonfiction reader. But of course, I proved myself wrong. There are two repeat authors. David Sedaris and Chelsea Handler. They are definitely my favorites. Humor and sarcasm are the common denominator.
Historical, academic texts, biographies, autobiographies and memoirs are my typical readings. Serious informational reading one might say. But Handler and Sedaris are two authors which also call my attention. Their writing causes me to burst out laughing, chuckle and smile in public or at home. I especially love it when it happens in public. Oh the looks and stares of envy I get. These types of books are great reads, enough to make me a repeat buyer.
My love for eating and cooking Italian food came from my first boyfriend, Sal. His parents were from Italy, spoke Italian, and had connections, if you know what I mean. Sal and I dated for roughly three years. At his house, there was a weekly meal plan. You knew what you were eating by the day of the week it was. Thursday night was spaghetti night. I Loved Thursdays! Wednesdays were for chicken cutlets, which is also a favorite of mine. Saturday was lasagna and so on. Each day had a dish. I ALWAYS went over on Thursdays.
When I arrived one Thursday, I was told there would be a slight change to the meal for that night. I of course hid my dissatisfaction upon hearing this news. Can’t complain when eating at someone else’s house. Right? Why didn’t Sal tell me earlier? Geez. We sat down and Sal’s mom brought out the glass dish. I could see through the side of the dish the red sauce, so that was good. She placed the dish on the table and now I could see the whitish, yellowish, brownish cheese on top. “Tonight is chicken parm night, I had extra chicken so I used it to make this.” announced Sal’s mom. Ok. I thought. She brought out the spaghetti and we began to eat. Now, I don’t recall if I had ever had chicken parmesan before this evening, but it does not matter because this was the best chicken parmesan I had ever eaten. It is because of THAT dish, on THAT night, I now love to make chicken parm. I only make it once in a while and it’s a family favorite. So there is a bit of excitement in the air when my family knows I am going to make it.
“Hey guess what mom is making? Chick parm!” “Don’t eat a big lunch, save space!”
A billion dollars sure sounds like a lot, and I am sure it is. But do I really need a billion dollars? Does anyone for that matter really need that much money?
What would I do with a billion bucks?
Well, I would definitely keep the amount needed for me and my immediate family to lead a comfortable life. After that, I would use it to do good.
I can also tell you what I definitely would not do with the money.
I would not give it to charity or donate it. Why? Mainly because I am not sure where that money goes, or how it is spent, and if it is spent how it should be. Surely some of the money is but I have doubts, some dollars may get lost along their way. What’s interesting too, is when those charities call me up for donations, I always respond with “I can donate my time but not money.” The solicitor, a bit shocked, takes a moment to think and always says someone will get back to me, but they never do. So, that’s why with the money I have left, I would look for ways in which I could directly help others. Once found, I would take the remaining and spend it myself ensuring that it is getting used as needed. This probably sounds like it might be a bit of work, but since I do not have work, I have the time. Right?
Eleven years ago, I joined a gym because I had a coupon for a certain amount of classes for a set price. I decided to give going to the gym a try again. I had signed up at gyms previously many times before and I knew that I would probably attend for a bit but then my attendance would taper off and eventually I would stop. Knowing this, I still decided to try again. I had a coupon after all. I attended every session for a month. I liked the coach, made quick gym friends in the month I attended, and I have been going ever since. I currently attend the gym about four times a week and I still have some of the same friends as when I started.. When I don’t go to the gym on my scheduled days and times I usually get very stressed, mad or start complaining. If I cannot make it to the gym or if it’s closed I do alternative things such as walking and running. Exercising has become a part of me. I do not think of it as a have too or a gotta do because. I do it because I have seen the benefits of it..
Once I started exercising regularly, I obviously thought “I have to eat properly.” “ I need to go on a diet.” The following month I got a coupon for a discount to see a nutritionist. I had never been to one and decided to give it a try. I got my prescribed diet from the nutritionist and followed it. I felt pressure as I had to return in a month to see my progress. I stuck with the nutritionist and saw the results. The weight came off. With the nutritionist I learned how to eat properly. It took time and there were setbacks but I kept at it. Today, we are an “ ingredient household,” which my son recently pointed out to me. Overtime after making your food from ingredients rather than from boxes and cans, food tastes differently and eating what I call “processed” food is kinda gross, even desserts.
Is eating healthy and exercising regularly easy? No. Is this quick? No. It’s a process. It takes time, dedication, and setbacks. But if you maintain your course it becomes part of you and you will see the long term benefits.
Why did it stick this time? Accountability. I highly recommend going to a nutricionist and going to a small gym where everybody knows your name. Cheers!
Good luck to all those who have made this your resolution for 2023!
The very word conjures up negative feelings and thoughts. Ugh! Who likes doing chores? No one. But, what if we changed the word? Would it make doing or wanting to do a chore more exciting? A quick synonym search on the word chore and up come the words tasks, duty, assignment and job. Hmm… not sure if I called dusting a duty it would make it more pleasing to perform. What about I have the task of dusting the living room today? Nope. That does not do it. How about we swap out the word chores for some other postive word? Think postive right? Perhaps this might make the activity more pleasing. Reverse psychology, no? Let’s see.
Positive spins to the word chore: aim, goals, ambition, aspiration, dream.
Let’s them out.
My aim is to dust the living room.
My goal is to dust the living room today.
My ambition of the day is to dust the living room. Hmmm…perhaps.
My DREAM is to dust the living room today. Nah.
Nope changing the word chore for a more positive word does not make performing the action any easier or better.
Arguement flawed. Dusting still sucks and I find it challenging to do.
Deep, personal, subjective is how I define this question.
How do I define success? My answer is, it depends. First, I believe you should be using your own measuring stick, not societies measuring stick, to determine your success, but we tend to use societies stick instead.
Take for example grades and school. We use a random set of numbers, which were decided by a group people, who knows when ,to determine whether a person is successful in school or not. Then we take these numbers and tell people that they can or can’t get into a school based on that number. If the number is high, your are successful and get to go to a “good” college and if it is low, you are not successful and your college options are limited. But, does this number help to determine a person’s success? No, of course not. There are a multitude of things, to many to list and discuss here in this blog, that go into determining a person’s success in school, their occupation and in their life. Using that societal measuring stick to determine success is well, no bueno, not good.
Success, is determined by each individual person. Outsiders can and will use their own measuring stick to judge you, which is bad and needs to stop. The question is, how do we instill this thinking in the future generations? Should we?
The first set of books that I was hooked on were the Dr. Seuss books. I would read them over and over again. I remember I was so proud because I could read them by myself. The next memorable set of books were The Little House on Prairie books, by Laura Ingalls Wilder. I remember I would beg my mom to take me to the library so I could get the next book in the series. Then, came the romance novels which I would devour.
Did these books change my life? Yes. They created a love of reading within. Weekly trips to the library and countless hours of reading, “the just one more chapter’ or ‘just one more page,” which of course never was true.
As I got older, I stopped reading. I am not sure as to why, but I stopped. I don’t recall being asked to read classics in school either. Perhaps poor schooling or just life happened. I did however became more of a magazine article reader. I would read books here and there, the ones that “everyone” was talking about, but that was it.
As stated in a previous blog posts, I picked up my reading habit once again when the pandemic hit. I think I read a total of twenty-three books that year. And from that point forward, I have committed to reading and I set a reading goal in Goodreads. Last year I read 2 more books that I had set for myself. Let’s see how this year goes as now I have added a writing goal too.
Going back to the question, have the books changed my life? Yes. All of them have.
With each book I read, I take something from it. Whether it be a new perspective or insight on a given topic or an affirmation of what is known, there is even the occasional “this is bananas” insight. I am always learning something from what I am reading, even the Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy offered up some interesting learnings.
So yes, a book, many books, have changed my life mostly because I have most likely learned something new.
A large, white soft plushy bear, with a big red bow wrapped around its neck, given to me on Valentine’s Day by Tony Bolzomi, I would say is one of my most memorable gifts. My doorbell rang early one evening and everyone rushed to the door, this was time before cell phones and technology, and there he stood with the big white bear in front of him. “Happy Valentine’s Day!” “This is for you!” My mom was standing right there with me at the door. I grabbed the bear, said thank you, asked who drove him over to my house and then said, ” See you tomorrow” and shut the door. No hug, no peck on the cheek, nothing. I was so embarrassed. Omg! He came to my house! I think we dated for another week and we were over.
That bear was in my room all through my teenage years. When I moved out, I wrapped the bear in plastic so that it would not get covered in dust. To this day, I have the bear. One day I will pass on this special gift to my future grandchild. Yes, the bear skipped my children. Oh well.