1 1/2 cups sugar
2 cups self rising flour
1 1/4 cup milk
2 cans Osage Peaches (found at HEB)
(reserve the juice from one can)
Anyone that knows me at all knows how much I love my yoga classes. You’ve probably heard me say how great I feel when I finish the class and how my mind is at peace during that hour. I swear that yoga has kept me sane. But I’m also learning how beneficial it is for my health.
Sometimes our lifestyle can shorten our muscles. Have you ever strained a muscle doing an everyday activity? For instance, do you spend hours at a desk leaning over a computer keyboard like I do? This can put you at higher risk of straining the muscles in your back. Or if your lifestyle has you on the run picking up toddlers while carrying in bags of groceries, you are at greater risk of pulling your hamstrings. When you are limber, sudden awkward movements won’t strain your muscles. It’s not enough to be aerobically fit. You have to work on your flexibility too.
Flexibility is part three of a healthy fitness plan. We all know that cardiovascular conditioning and strength training are vital for overall health but good flexibility has many benefits to the body as well. It can help you reach your optimum fitness level and help prevent injury. In addition, it can stave off conditions like arthritis. When you stretch a muscle, you lengthen the tendons. The longer the tendons, the more you are able to increase the muscle size when strength training. The larger the muscle, the higher your metabolism and fitness level. So you can see how the 3 parts of fitness all work together. If you leave one part out, you are cheating yourself from achieving the maximum results.
Stretching can also improve your circulation and has been linked to lower risk of cardiovascular disease. A 2009 study in the American Journal of Physiology indicated that people over 40 who scored well on flexibility tests had less stiffness in their arterial walls which is an indicator of risk for stroke and heart attack.
You may be asking, ok where do I start? To increase your flexibility, start with about 10-20 minutes of stretching a day. Focus on the major muscles: arms, shoulders, neck, back, thighs, calves, and ankles. If you have problem prone areas, then spend a little more time zeroing in on those. Once you have reached your goals, you can maintain your flexibility with stretching only a few times a week. Or even better yet, join me at the YMCA for a yoga class.
| That little voice inside your head that gives you warnings about people and situations, is it real? Should I have listened to my friends all those years ago that told me the guy I was about to marry was bad news, after my money, arrogant, not good enough for me…..? Probably so. I think they saw the same things that I did but weren’t blinded like I was. They were better at reading the signs than me. I was young and gullible and wanted to believe that it was all I wanted itto be. Bottom line: you should listen to your friends and families’ opinions. And if the “love of your life” starts driving away all of your life long loved ones……it’s their intuition telling them what’s to come. Beware!It may seem like a magical power, but intuition actually springs from observation and experience, explains cognitive psychologist Gary Klein, Ph.D., author of The Power House of Intuition. While you consciously think of other things, your unconscious mind is recording your experience, including tiny details you may not realize you’re noticing. When you use your intuition, you’re actually using all that information, Klein says. The reason is seems so mysterious is that it’s a subtle, complex level of knowledge that you generally can’t articulate.Your unconscious mind helps you out on a daily basis. It works best when you have enough relevant experience to base it on. These automatic responses are based on years of practice. Of all our intuitive thoughts, the ones about other people are among the most accurate, says David Myers, Ph.D., author of Intuition: Its Powers and Perils. The unconscious mind, like the conscious one, learns from experience, and gut feelings about people draw from a lifetime of social interaction. Hundreds of studies have shown that women are better than men, on average, at grasping the emotions and personality of others. Women are better at noticing and remembering when people frown, shrug, lick their lips, talk with their hands or communicate in other types of nonverbal ways. We are trained our entire lives to be interested in people’s feelings and are encouraged to express our emotions. By the time we are adults, we have mastered the nuances of emotion and body language. Males tend to just brush these things off and focus on actions.
So now I have a few more years of learning and observations under my belt and I believe that I won’t be taken so easily again. Back in the dating scene, I am picking up on those subtle signs and thankfully, listening to my intuition a little better. And this time around, you bet I’m going to listen to the opinions of the many friends and family that have loved me through this past year.
It looks like I may sell this house. While I’m very excited about being able to literally move on after my divorce 1 ½ years ago, this house holds so many memories. Good and bad ones. I like to focus on the good ones. My daughter brought a song to my attention last year that says so much. It’s by Miranda Lambert titled “The House That Built Me”. This song produces such strong emotions that it can make me cry within about 3 seconds (I am a bit of a crybaby). I’ve been here for over 10 years watching both kids grow up and graduate, had a marriage that wasn’t great but did have a few good times mixed in with the bad, gone through a divorce (yes, that is a happy memory at this point) had numerous pets that came and went and are now buried here, trees that were planted in memory of loved ones, witnessed the passing of my much loved step-father, enjoyed countless birthdays and Mothers Days, had lazy days by the pool, my first ride on a tractor, watched my son pole vault to amazing heights, watched my daughter ride her pony…….. All of these memories I will pack and take with me. What I can’t take with me are a couple of things attached to this house, my back porch and my huge claw foot bathtub.
I love my screened-in back porch. There are all kinds of memories there. During the last 1 ½ years a tradition called “wine on the porch” was created. It played a big part in getting me through my divorce. Many evenings were spent out there with friends just hanging out. It was a time where I was able to put aside all the stress of the day and sit out there simply laughing and loving life. Other times saw me frustrated and feeling like life was unfair. And at times it was grossly unfair. Ultimately, after an evening on the porch, I always felt like I could keep going no matter what came at me next. Through it all I have learned that you must move on. You have to let things go because being angry and bitter just eats you up inside. I discovered how to give my worries to God on this porch. Truly letting go is liberating. It’s a freedom that is unparalleled. My friends and family say they witnessed me finding true happiness through this process. Something I had been missing for so many years. So I will miss this porch but the tradition of “wine on the porch” will definitely continue wherever I end up settling.
My bathtub is fantastic! It’s an enormous claw-foot tub that I swear I can just about swim laps in. There is nothing like sinking down in a tub of hot water at the end of the day and enjoying the peace and solitude it brings. People that know me, give me a hard time about always being in that tub any time they call. Maybe I do spend an inordinate amount of time there but I’ve known for a while that I will have to give it up one day and I want to get as much time in as I possibly can. I seriously doubt that I’ll ever have a tub like that again. Perhaps it’s a blessing to have to move on though. I’ve thought about how awful it would be to have that amazing tub staring at me, mocking me, and being too old to be capable of getting in and out of it without breaking something. That would be torture. So I guess it’s best that I will be removed from the temptation when I’m older because I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t be able to break the tub “habit” without serious intervention.
I hope the new owners love this house as much as I have. I don’t know anything about them, if they have kids or pets or what they plan on doing with 10 acres. But I do know that they will start making their own memories and creating traditions in this house right away. And wherever I settle, new memories and traditions await me.