Little Things Mean A Lot!

Little Things Mean A Lot!

Lately, I have found that the goals and dreams I set for 2015 are already in need of some re-energizing…so in an attempt to do just that, I decided to take a good look around at all the little things that mean a lot to me and help make life good, and in turn, inspire me to live better–if you find yourself in a first quarter slump, maybe doing this will help you too.

Little Things Mean A Lot!  www.mytributejournal.com Small surprises, kindness given softly, a reassuring touch, the generous gift of another’s time…these little things both astonish and enchant us and ultimately add up to make our lives a big wonderful existence!

Noticing The Little Things!

◊ You might be wondering how little things like a George Strait CD and cleaning sponges combine to make my life better.

FullSizeRender (3) My husband was raised in a large family of nine children, and as you can imagine there were plenty of jobs to be done!  Saturday mornings at our  house are often started with George Strait music blaring loud and my husband scrubbing the floors and vacuuming carpets.  As my husband and I work together to get things done around the house, it means we can to go “play” much sooner!  Perhaps this doesn’t seem like much, but man, isn’t a guy who helps with the cleaning simply the best!  All those little things we do for each other as husband and wife certainly mean a lot!

◊  Come March, my overly zealous January exercise goals and strides for healthy eating start waning a bit!

Women's Health magazine  www.mytributejournal.comLucky for those of us who are feeling a little less than enthusiastic about getting up and out of bed early to hit the gym, helpful resources like the article in this month’s Women’s Health on “Lazy Ways To Burn More Calories” have us covered!  I find it’s best for me to have a few options right about now that help keep me motivated and give me the boost I need to stick with healthier choices.  Finding ways to live better are just a few of the little things we do for ourselves so we can be strong and live longer.  I’m not going to lie though, I also took to heart the advice given in the article “Best Sleep Ever”!

◊  No doubt about it, life gets busy, and schedules are hectic at times–but I will always strive to find a good balance between meeting my various obligations and spending time with those I love!

Little Things Mean A Lot!  www.mytributejournal.com

Little Things Mean A Lot!  www.mytributejournal.com I think one advantage of getting a little older (yes, there are a few) is that finding time to spend with loved ones seems to be much easier to prioritize!  Like most children, my cute granddaughters have a knack of making the little ordinary things you do each day, from working around the house to a simple lunch date, seem like the most fun you’ll ever have!  Spending time with them is usually first on my “To Do” list these days–besides being with them often provides extra opportunities for me to spend a little more time with their mother, my neat daughter–and that means the world to me!

◊  Some days you can be surrounded with all sorts of people, but your heart is still lonely.

Little Things Mean A Lot!  www.mytributejournal.com

I feel lucky to have neat friends who know just when to pick me up, dust me off, and even bring me my favorite treats on occasion–often accompanied by a heartfelt note or brief visit where we laugh about our ordinary, but crazy lives!  All the little things these ladies do not only mean a lot to me, they help restore my hope and confidence!

What I’m learning now is…

Little things and kind deeds mean a lot because they can’t help but expand your heart until it’s ready to burst…and that makes you want to do little things that mean a lot to others in return!

Little Things Mean A Lot!  www.mytributejournal.com

“The long, long memories of life are of people who are loving and kind!”  Helen Exley

What’s been a happy, wonderful deed you’ve experienced lately?

–Mary

Healthy, Wealthy And Wise! Celebrating Women Edition!

Healthy, Wealthy And Wise!  Celebrating Women Edition!

Since February is “Go Red” month, spotlighting heart and stroke prevention in women, I’d like to devote February’s Healthy Wealthy and Wise post to issues concerning women.

Image-1 (17)

Our role as women has taken on more diversity than ever before, and requires that we wear many hats, so to speak, on any given day!  However, too often, no matter how busy we are and how many schedules we juggle, we tend to be our own harshest critics, and that can lead to other important areas of our life being compromised, especially where being healthy, wealthy and wise are concerned!

Being healthy.  www.mytributejournal.com

Better information on the increased risk of heart attacks in all women has most definitely been a crucial factor in improved public awareness about the risk factors and signs and symptoms of heart attacks and strokes among the female population.  But a great article in February’s Better Homes & Garden, says that often women aren’t treated with the same urgency as a man, due to the lack of clarity about symptoms she is experiencing.

Here then is a quick review of symptoms and a lifesaving guide for what to say to healthcare personnel:

♥ Although chest pain and shortness of breath are the more well-known symptoms associated with heart attacks, overwhelming fatigue, dizziness and upper back pain (often experienced at varying degrees for several weeks prior to a full-blown heart attack) are the ones more commonly experienced by women when having a cardiac arrest.     

♥ DO NOT drive yourself to the ER!  As women, we often pride ourselves on being self-sufficient, but in reality, we could pass out behind the wheel if we end up having a heart attack.  Also, ambulances are stocked with lifesaving drugs and defibrillators that can mean the difference between life and death!

Be very clear in stating what symptoms you are experiencing and don’t hesitate to tell the EMT’s that you think you’re having a heart attack, even suggest that they monitor your heart rate with their EKG machine.  Be ready to share your heart health history and any medicine you are currently taking.     

Women are at an increased for risk of having strokes due to genetic make-up and the fact that many take birth control pills.  Women also have more auto-immune diseases and migraine headaches, which can cause higher stroke rates.

A good acronym to remember the signs and symptoms of strokes is F A S T

Facial drooping, Arm weakness, Speech difficulties, Time is of the essence 

Here’s a great video that explains this further:

Gaining wealth.  www.mytributejournal.com

Our money mindset as women is often more concentrated on finding creative ways to spend money…I know that’s where my financial comfort zone tends to be, but as I’ve watched my husband in his job as a financial planner help women who did not expect to become widows, learn the ropes of assuming the lead role in their financial futures, I’ve come to realize that as women we need to do a lot more than take a back seat to things concerning money, and that we need to be active participants in making more of the financial decisions at an early age.

Just recently, I came across the book, “Money, Manifestations and Miracles” by Meriflor Toneatto, which is such an interesting read on the topic of women and finances.  The main concept discussed in this book is that as women, we need to recognize our intrinsic relationship with money–and usually it is very different from men.  Imagine that!!

“Often for women, money is an emotional currency, tied to our sense of self-worth and confidence, which can lead us to pitfalls that ultimately limits what we pursue in life!” 

Ms. Toneatto goes on to emphasize that wealth is not just about money; it’s also about the quality of a woman’s overall life.  Once there is deeper awareness of how we really feel about our lives, we can then gain a more meaningful insight into our relationship with money and go about making any necessary changes.

Here’s a few pointers I liked that were listed in the book to help improve a woman’s relationship with money:

Healthy, Wealthy and Wise!  Celebrating Women Edition!  www.mytributejournal.com

$ Being totally honest with ourselves is the best way to get to the root of our feelings, beliefs and attitudes about money.  “Women often keep secrets about their true feelings–especially regarding money!

$ Practice forgiveness; a key component to moving beyond our emotional obstacles where money is concerned, is to let them go and forgive yourself.   “Practicing forgiveness is a very powerful way to remove what’s standing between us and gaining a better understanding of the role money plays in our lives!”

$ Start a money journal.  If you don’t already have one, consider keeping a gratitude journal, then ramp it up a little by  tracking your finances in it, as well.  “What you focus on will grow, so why not focus on being grateful about money and you may just find that you start to see positive changes in your life!”

$ Celebrate the big and small things in life and have more fun!  “Too often we tend to take notice of the big accomplishments in life, but overlook the little steps we took to get there.  They ALL count!  We need to take heart in the journey!”

Using wisdom.  www.mytibutejournal.comMost of what I consider as my “real” wisdom has come from the wise advice and caring examples of other women that I’ve had the privilege of knowing in my life.  However, as women, we can be incredibly hard on one another and not fully appreciate the fact we’re all wise in so many countless ways and have so much we can share with each other–and the world!

If ever I was feeling downtrodden as a teenager or young mother raising my children, by what seemed like the endless accomplishments of all the wonderful women around me, my wise mother used to tell me, Don’t compare, CARE!  And isn’t that so true, when you care for others, you get to know them better and then you both benefit from a new-found relationship!

I love the line from the song “Love Will Make You Wise” by Sheena Easton, where it says, “Life will teach you what you need to know, but only love will make you wise!”  How incredible is that feeling of being genuinely viewed by other women as the smart and capable women we are because of our character strengths and life experiences.  It behooves us then, to learn and grow from the wisdom shared by other women!

Maya Angelou Quote  www.mytributejournal.com

I would imagine that if we do nothing more than reach out to others in love and concern that our overall well-being will improve.

What’s one thing you do, either by being more healthy, more smart with your money or more caring that you feel helps you live better? 

–Mary 

A Second Look At January!

A Second Look At January! 

In between the glitter and gifts of December and the heart décor and pastel hues of February, sits poor January!  Yes, there’s the initial excitement of making goals and dreams for the new year, and my husband’s birthday is in January–but other than that, I tend to wish January and its winter drabness away!

Yes, I can be a January Grinch!

January Grinch!  www.mytributejournal.com

The view that typically greets me when I look out my window during the month of January is one of heavy, frosted air and snow encrusted scenery.

Winter in Utah!  www.mytributejournal.com

But as the sun peaked through the clouds the other day, I found myself reaching for my sunglasses–and in the spirit of being better at seeing the beautiful in the world around me, I decided to take a second look at January!

IMG_443662022 (3)

My New January Perspective!

There is a unique peacefulness that comes during a January winter storm.  I have to admit that when my little corner of the world is covered with white, fluffy snow, it feels so calm and serene that for a brief time, all seems right with the world!

Enjoying winter weather  www.mytributejournal.com

Some of my favorite family memories are when we spent more time skiing and playing in the snow!

Beautiful winter weather  www.mytributejournal.com

If you look close, there really are beautiful pops of color amid the grayish tones of January!

♦ Cheers to healthy living in January!  Living healthier always seems to be a popular New Year’s resolution (or goal, if you prefer) made by most people every year.  After all the Christmas holiday indulgences, and before the Valentine’s Day chocolates and candies make their debut, I know that I am certainly more focused on exercising and eating better during the month of January than probably any other time of year! 

FullSizeRender

With all the January clearance sales that are going on, you’re sure to find some great deals on new work-out clothes and equipment too.

Speaking of sales–you name it, and it’s usually on sale during January clearance deals!  We’re talking major mark-downs here–it’s the stuff that shopping dreams are made of!

January sales  www.mytributejournal.com

Bundling up for winter weather is always so much more fun when you feel stylish and you get it on sale…oh, and stocking up during January “white” sales is a must, don’t you think!   Some great deals I have come across this month are: fun scarves from Nordstrom, Steve Madden lace-up boots from Macy’s, a moto jacket from Forever 21, (yep, you read that right, and it’s so cute) and spring has sprung, at least in my bedroom, with new sheets from TJ Maxx!  I was also able to get a screamin’ deal last week on some new tools my husband wanted for his birthday.  I mean really, who knew tools went on sale!  Ha!

♦ The Sundance Film Festival begins in January!   A short drive from where I live in Salt Lake City, Utah, up beautiful Parley’s Canyon, the Sundance Film Festival kicks off in the quaint town of Park City during the third week of January.  Festival coordinators are good to make sure that a number of tickets are made available for local residents to attend this star-studded event–many at a discounted price.

Sundance Film Festival in Park city, Utah  www.mytributejournal.com

If there’s fresh snow, skiing is another great January option in Park City.  Usually Park City doesn’t get socked in with the bad air inversion like it does down in the valley, so that’s another reason to spend some time up there in January.

Enjoyring winter weather  www.mytributejournal.com

My cute granddaughters always inspire me to go out and enjoy the winter weather of January!

When all is said and done, there is nothing quite like coming in from the cold outdoors, putting on some warm pajamas and getting cozy in those brand new sheets you bought on sale while you read a good book!

January "white" sales  www.mytributejournal.com

What I’m learning now is…

I really am glad to live in an area where I can experience all four seasons, and I believe it’s always a good idea to gain better perspective on something that isn’t particularly your favorite–but to be perfectly honest, I will be glad when spring weather does finally come! 

What are some things you do to enjoy January and winter weather? 

–Mary