Tag Archives: reading

Countdown

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Countdown

Please tell me another week has not gone by already. I need to start thinking about packing.

Facebook reminded me that on June 17th in 2013 I was having surgery in Winnipeg. Glad it’s now 2022 and I was leading the exercises in fitness training this year instead on June 17th. Even Walmart didn’t annoy me on Friday.

On my commute by bus to Leavenworth to teach SAIL classes on Thursday, I met an activities director of a personal care home. She noticed the shirt I was wearing and asked if I’d consider teaching at their facility. I told her I’d touch base in August when I get back from Canada. I still have more training to do so that I can coach A Matter of Balance.

Never in my wildest dreams did I ever envision myself teaching fitness classes at this stage of the game. Add it to more stories to tell my grandkids.

Writing is going well. Actually it’s going so well that I haven’t found time to catch up on reading books in English, usually a favorite pastime when I come up from Mexico every spring. I do go to the library, but it’s mostly to print out documents.

I’ve also given Duolingo a rest. I received an email the other day telling me how sad Duo is because I haven’t been checking in every day. Poor little owl!

I met a guy the other day who is up here from Florida to be in Leavenworth Summer Theater. So happy to hear that I won’t miss all of them when I’m in Canada. My favorite is still Sound of Music. The surrounding woods and the mountains are the most amazing backdrops.

Que tengas un buenisimo domingo!

Sleep

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Sleep

I did a program the other night on Zoom. The topic was sleep. And I found out I’m doing everything wrong at night before I go to bed. Yet somehow I fall asleep easily and sleep through the night. Okay, the odd time I don’t. But usually sleep comes easily and is restful.

I’m not supposed to color at night. The lighting is supposed to be dim. I need light to color.

Reading is okay if it’s a book and not on a screen. Hmmm, I like to read on my Kindle. That doesn’t work for me.

Technology. Turn off your phone. Let your phone sleep too. I admit I do turn off my ringer. And I do try not to chat.

And now the tablet. I like to unwind playing Candy Crush and Word Connect at night. I don’t find it stimulating enough to prevent me from sleeping. So much for screen time.

The surprising one was to avoid sex. Apparently studies have found that there is too much pressure to perform and that is not considered conducive to getting a good night’s sleep.

Another hint was sitting in a chair to unwind before getting into bed. Bed should be for sleep only. Nope. I prefer to review my day while lying comfortably in bed.

Don’t meditate before going to sleep? Another one I totally disagree with. There’s nothing like doing a full body scan technique to relax at night.

Fresh air. Yes, that one I agree with. I always sleep with a window open. Of course I don’t do winter in a cold climate anymore.

Avoid caffeine and don’t eat a heavy meal prior to bedtime. I’ll go with that although I do indulge in chocolate from time to time.

Noise. Loud is not good. Some people find sound machines soothing. Personally, I love to hear waves lapping as I listen to Pachelbel.

Here’s one of my favorite strategies that wasn’t mentioned on the Zoom program. That one is prayer. If you don’t do that one already, then you really do need to try it. The religion you practice doesn’t matter. God hears it all.

If your sleep pattern goes wild and you feel out of sorts, you should get a referral to a specialist in the field of sleep medicine. Got to love all this new terminology.

Unfortunately far too many people rely on prescription medication or may self-medicate with the variety of available over-the-counter products. Sometimes these may mask physical conditions that are affecting sleep. Of course sleep deprivation itself causes a variety of problems such as depression. In a way, it’s kind of a vicious circle.

In conclusion, there is no generic cure for insomnia. Not everything works for everyone. I have my regimen and I’m sticking to it, whether recommended or not.

It’s Smokey Here

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It’s Smokey Here

Washington state is on fire. Oregon is on fire. California is on fire. British Columbia is on fire. The smoke was really bad in Wenatchee this week. Here in Dryden the smoke has started to blow away.

It’s summer and we all want to be outdoors. But when the smoke is so bad we’re back to hibernating indoors. And we find other things to do.

It’s hard to believe that my post earlier in the week had pics of clear skies with no smoke in Lake Chelan. The smoke rolled in the day after.

Fitness classes I teach are indoors. However the windows were closed as there was no fresh air to ventilate the room.

Movies. Yes it’s been a good time to catch up on Netflix. And I’ve also been watching season two of The Chosen.

Going out for lunch with friends in air-conditioned restaurants. No outdoor patios in the past few days.

We saw a production of Shakespeare’s As You Like It at Riverside Playhouse in Wenatchee. Excellent show featuring very talented kids and teens.

I’ve been reading quite a bit as well. Always looking for new authors and have found some great books this summer.

And then there’s researching future travel plans………

Technology Today

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As a child technology consisted of occasionally answering a telephone or watching the odd television program on one of the three available channels. Cable didn’t arrive in Winnipeg until I was a teenager.

My children grew up with cell phones and computers. And let’s not forget all those videogames. Records? 8 Tracks? Cassettes? VCR? CD? DVD? All dinosaurs now.

My granddaughter was just over a year old when I bought her a tablet. Okay, admittedly it was Fisher Price, but a device nonetheless.

On Thursday I decided to track my device usage, just for fun. Although I do have a tablet, I have not yet replaced my laptop that died in Mexico back in April of 2020. So how much do I actually rely on technology? Apparently quite a bit more than I thought.

Alexa. Short conversations. Good morning. Weather. Tell me a joke. Trivia. Play music. Hmmm, it all adds up.

Actual tasks. Renewed travel health insurance. Updated info on WordPress. Paid credit card bills. Worked on a blog post. Emails. Revised SAIL exercise routine.

Stress relief time. Candy Crush and Word Cookies. Social media, although at times it seems to add to the stress. Playlist for meditation.

Only television time is maybe a half hour of Olympics. No Netflix today.

Phone calls. Voicemail. Texting, Messenger, Google Duo and thank you God I only use What’s App when I have my Mexican chip in my phone. And then there are all the photos I take with my phone.

Time to practice Spanish. Love my Duolingo! Average of 115 XP every day.

I haven’t tracked the time, only the activity. I don’t think I want to even know how many hours a day I am consumed by technology. But I’m sure it’s still much less than the younger generation whose ear buds are permanently attached to their bodies.

I’m done writing this post now. I’m going to read a book. And I’m not going to read it on my tablet. I’m going to read a real book with pages that you actually hold in your hands. And I can do that without even searching through a frustratingly long list of passwords!

Wednesday Humpday Again

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Wednesday Humpday Again

When I taught ESL in Mexico, days of the week was one of the first lessons in all curriculums. The students were always amused at the nickname of humpday for Wednesday. But they readily embraced this term when they understood the significance of the day. As for me, I still chuckle at the Spanish term for Wednesday. Miercoles is quite a mouthful.

It’s still hot and dry here in Washington state. There is no rain in sight although some clouds did tease us momentarily yesterday. The outdoor pool in Leavenworth is becoming very popular.

Almost eleven months since I arrived from Mexico and I’m still here. Physically so close to Canada yet it seems to be getting farther away. Biding my time and wondering what the next announcement will be regarding Covid tests and borders.

The Olympics are well underway in Tokyo. It seems strange to see the stands so empty. And the competitors and coaches with masks are just too surreal. The athletes will definitely have stories to tell for years to come.

I’ve been reading more than usual lately. I highly recommend the two books co-authored by Bill Clinton and James Patterson. Big, heavy books but great reads nonetheless.

Coffee is calling.

Happy Humpday!

The Choice

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The Choice

Occasionally I read a book in English when I’m in Mexico. Today I finished The Choice by Nicholas Sparks. This isn’t the first time I’ve read it. It’s just the type of story I enjoy reading more than once.

It never ceases to amaze me just how strong the love is between Travis and Gabby. I marvel at how a man can be so dedicated and passionate. I know that was never the experience I had in my marriage, although I have found it since in subsequent relationships.

I wonder if there is a genetic link out there that makes some men more inclined to feel and express love. It can’t all be learned behavior from our upbringing.

I’ve actually had conversations on this topic with both female and male friends. I’ve observed that while females appear to be more emotionally definitive, males seem to be more on the defensive side.

Then there is the idea of love turned inward resulting in narcissism. There is a strong correlation here with environment, suggesting that this type of love is a learned behavior.

Unfortunately we don’t recognize narcissism in our partners until the relationship ends, despite the persistent attempts by therapists over the years to open our eyes to this toxicity in our lives.

I’d like to think that the love story about Travis and Gabby is not unique. But it’s hard to believe that in view of the high incidence of divorce in today’s world, or in viewing the number of couples who stay together for financial reasons and are bitterly unhappy. I think that number has overtaken the one for couples who remain together for the sake of the children, another fallacy in parenting.

It was nice to escape to the world of Travis and Gabby, even for a short time. I highly recommend this book if you haven’t yet read it. Or if you have read it, you should read it again.

Happy July Fourth

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Happy July Fourth

It’s Thursday July 4th, Independence Day here in the USA.

It was nice to sleep in and not rush off to teach a fitness class this morning. Rather than brave the crowds at Kinderfest this year, I have chosen to spend a leisurely day reading instead.

I’m currently reading The Shell Seekers by Rosamunde Pilcher. This is one of my favorite books and I have read it numerous times.

I recall the first time I read it. Recovering from surgery, I had gone to visit my mother in Port Charlotte, Florida. She was determined that I rest and gave me this several hundred page book to read in the hope that I would lounge around reading and relax. Her strategy worked. I loved the book and couldn’t put it down.

Over the years I read the rest of the books Rosamunde Pilcher had written. I also collected them all. But sadly I no longer have them. They, along with the rest of my library, simply did not fit into the two suitcases that are the extent of my possessions today.

Now that I have this blog post up, I shall return to my reading until it’s time to go over to my friend’s home for dinner.

Happy Fourth!