Thursday, January 23, 2020

Thankful Thursday: January 23

I Am Thankful For:

A little Monday motivation
Cute puppy shirts
Football championship games
Low WW point snacks
Puppy kisses
Starting a new series on the blog
Simple dinners
A good pun
A change in the weather
Cough drops
Planning ahead
Healthy dinners
Lunch out with the Man of the House
Having a large capacity washer
Waking up with a song in my head
A day with the grand kid
My beautiful family

Sunday, January 19, 2020

Sunday Inspiration: Every Moment

Thursday, January 16, 2020

Thankful Thursday: January 16

I Am Thankful For:
Perfectly clear blue sky
Puppy kisses
Fresh fruit
Knowing you bought the right gift
Puppy silliness
Surprising news
New flooring for downstairs
The pitter-patter of puppy paws
Family dinner
Morning quiet
Watching clouds
Pretty yarn
Trips to Home Depot
"Welcome Home" puppy kisses
Bright full moon
Playing fetch with the puppy
A beautiful sunset

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

What No One Told Me About Menopause

I am experiencing an entirely new stage of life - the wild and crazy world of menopause.  (Yep.  We're going there.  So, if this topic is going to make you uncomfortable - you may want to stop reading right now and go to a different blog.)  Wait... that's not true,.  It's not really entirely new since technically I have been in this stage of life for several years now.

Here's the thing.  Other than the bare basics - no one ever told me much about menopause.  I thought you had a short time with hot flashes and mood swings while your periods got further apart and then just stopped.  Little did I know.  Even after all this time, I'm still surprised by it on a regular basis.  And I'm still learning what is involved in the process.

Let's start with some of the basics...

What IS menopause?  I think of it as a sort of reverse puberty.  Remember puberty?  That time in life when your body went through changes leading up to the beginning of the menstruation years?  Menopause is the time in life when your body goes through changes marking the end of the reproductive years. During this time your eggs are depleted, your ovaries start to shrink, and you begin producing less estrogen and progesterone - the hormones responsible for menstruation.  Some women may experience early menopause if these changes occur for reasons such as Premature Ovarian Failure or hysterectomy.

Menopause occurs in three stages.  Perimenopause is the 5 to 10 years before menopause when your hormone levels begin to decrease.  This can start as early as the mid-30s, but usually begins in a woman's early 40's.  This is the stage I'm currently experiencing. Menopause is when a woman has not experienced a period for 12 consecutive months (without experiencing other causes such as pregnancy, medication, or illness).  Postmenopause is, well... the rest of your life without periods in which the symptoms experienced during menopause decrease or disappear completely.

What are the symptoms of menopause?  You've probably heard all about the hot flashes, but menopause can also bring about:
  • irregular periods
  • night sweats
  • insomnia
  • mood swings
  • irritability
  • anxiety
  • vaginal dryness
  • dry skin
  • elevated heart rate
  • urinary issues
  • weight gain
  • and more
(Sounds like a real good time, right?)

Throughout this year, I will be sharing some of the lessons I have learned about menopause over the past several years.  And maybe a few more that I learn in the months to come.  I hope you'll join me for the journey.

Do you have questions about menopause?  Let me know in the comments and I'll try to answer them through out the series.

Thursday, January 9, 2020

Thankful Thursday: January 9

I Am Thankful For:

The last days of the decade
New journals and planners
Last orders of the year
Comfy pajamas
A patient husband
A quiet new year's eve at home
Calming music
Starting a new year
Puppy jackets
Trips to Lowe's
Meal planning
Checking out the clearance sales
The smell of wood smoke
Getting back on track
Hanging out with the grand kid
Rainy days
Foggy afternoons
Winter sunrise
Snow falling
Blue sky through a break in the clouds

Wednesday, January 8, 2020

My One Word: Intentional

A new year.  Days spread out before us like blank pages.  How will we fill them as they unfold?  What will our life look like once the next  twelve months haves passed us by?

We can't know what the future holds.  But we hope it's something good.  In order to try to fulfill that sense of promise which comes with fresh beginnings, some people choose to set goals or intentions.  They make new year's resolutions.

I personally select one word each year to provide focus and guidance for the year ahead.  It's not a new idea.  A quick search of  "one word" or "my one word" will show you a list of websites promoting the idea as well as plenty of other bloggers talking about their own word for the year.

In order for the concept of one word to work, you have to commit to it.  You have to soak yourself in it over the course of the year.  You have to make it part of your daily life and be intentional about it. 

And that last sentence brings us to what seems a good place to introduce my One Word for the year:

(I know... "intentional" is a sort of buzz word right now.  Right up there with "self-care" and "mindfulness".  But you know what?  That's OK.)

So, what does "intentional" mean?

adjective: intentional
  1. done on purpose; deliberate.

In a nutshell, it's about making plans with the purpose of attaining specific end goal.  

I often find myself drifting through the days, following a routine and doing certain activities - not because they're actually fulfilling a purpose or accomplishing much of anything, but just because that's what I've gotten used to doing them or just to fill time.  But I no longer want to just drift through.  I want to do things on purpose.  With intention.

I want to be more intentional about:

How I spend my time.  Not mindlessly spending time watching tv or wasting away hours doing things that I don't care about or that don't enhance my life or the life of people around me in some way. 

Pursuing my relationship with God.  Seeking His will and His purpose for my life.  Spending more time in prayer listening for His voice and guidance.  And learning to be silent and still to hear His voice.

My relationships with others  Focusing on my loved ones and making sure they know that I love and appreciate them.

My health  Continuing my weight loss journey and taking time to care for myself.  I only have one body and I have to take care of it if I expect it to carry me well into the future.

My words.  Thinking before I speak.  Writing more.   

My work.  Not letting my Etsy shop glide along on cruise control, but taking new and deliberate steps to improve it. 

As I live this year of "Intentional", I want to make the hours I have each day really count.  When I create my To-Do list, I want to view it as opportunities to serve others and to worship God.  

Do you have a word for the year, or do you make resolutions?  Share yours in the comments!


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