You at Christmas

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portrait of girl wearing christmas hat

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There’s a lot of talk about the value and need to be giving at this time of year. We have slogans like “It’s better (or ‘more blessed’ some say) to give than receive” that in our materialistic society seems a challenge. One charity boasts they are “Doing the most good.” Or we worry about the price of gifts that are out of our range.

Is giving supposed to be a competition? If so, what’s the prize? Or the measure?

  1. The Calculated Giver.

My sisters and I were always amused that our mother kept a Christmas Card list from Continue reading

I’m Inconvenient. Are You?

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Al Gore’s film about climate change, “An Inconvenient Truth”, made a big splash and was aptly name. But increasingly human beings are considered inconvenient because of two bullies: greed and speed. Watkins Glen State Park NY

There are days when I feel like a character in The Matrix. Others would be pleased if they could just strap me to a table and hook my bank account up to their tubes.

More businesses want me to just set up online accounts which siphon money directly from me to their account. They never have to see me, talk to me, or deal with me at all, unless it’s the nanosecond requirement for me to click “I agree.” Nor is it possible to explain a situation that does not fit their parameters over the phone.

Phone trees and websites are designed to Continue reading

Some Women Have Fat

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I started to write “Some Women are Fat” but that’s not the main issue. More men are becoming weight conscious, but for women fat phobia is a way of life. “This Is Us” has won an Emmy in part for including the lifetime pain of a large woman in its story line. More prevalent are shows like “The Biggest Loser”, featuring weighty men and women abusing themselves, often gaining the weight back because of their underlying medical problem.

The reality is that the medical community may not want to admit they don’t have an answer to all the fat conditions. They are as myriad and individual as the people struggling with fat. One doctor told a candidate surgery was the only way to reset her metabolism. Really?  The big secret is that bariatric surgery does not reliably produce weight loss.

Recently the role of our manufactured food industry has been recognized, but still the billion dollar diet industry rolls on. Women are assured the more they measure, the more they will never measure up with the appropriate body.  Ads for “health” are masks Continue reading

The Unwanted Mother

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Right now I have an 89-year-old friend who moved away from her lifetime residence and cadre of friends to a retirement home closer to her daughter. Her daughter wanted this move because it would save her expensive flights to visit her mother. Although they were not especially close, my friend wanted to be nearer to her daughter in case she became ill.

My friend spends her days isolated in the facility. Her daughter does not see or talk to her very much and it is difficult to begin making friends at this age, she says. It is now apparent that her daughter may not be there even if she is ill. She thinks she made a mistake but she cannot move back now. She is too old.pexels-photo-1051076.jpeg

The Institute on Aging reported in 2010 that older women are twice as likely to live alone Continue reading

At Home with Women’s History

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Otoe-Missouria Princesses Today

Inventions are just another way people are creative.  Women excel in creativity, and have focused it on whatever arena they have found themselves in.

We don’t know the names of Native American women who developed any of the pre-Columbian treasures that were found when Europeans arrived here. We know that the idea of democracy from the Iroquois Confederation and compulsory education were new to the explorers. They found Native Americans using  chocolate, aspirin, gold plating, rubber balloons, toy tops, chewing gum, hammocks, oil extraction, and a container like a baby bottle. Their knowledge of 2,564 plant medicines revealed uses as anaesthetics, insect repellants, and oral contraceptives, some administered through syringe-like devices.

Given the chance, Native American women did enter fields yielding inventions. Born on August 9, 1908 in Oklahoma, Cherokee Mary Golda Ross was the first female and the only Native American engineer at Lockheed Aircraft Corporation in Burbank, California during the Space Race.

Many times we don’t know the names of the women who have created our benefits today. A cliché is a woman’s place is in the home. So women inventors changed what this  meant.  Tour a home with me and see how many ways women inventors have helped us with our work.

An innovation in solar heating of the home is itself a contribution of Maria Telkes.  Marie Continue reading

A Valentine for Your Inner Child

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“Every human person is inevitably involved with two worlds: the world they carry within them and the world that is out there. All thinking, all writing, all action, all creation and all destruction is about that bridge between the two worlds.” – John O’Donahue

Valentine’s Day is a celebration of connection. Sending heartfelt thoughts is a way to reach out, perhaps say what can’t be said, with a greeting already packaged.

Sometimes the day is not welcomed. There may be complex feelings, confusion or Continue reading

De-Stress Your Self-Talk

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screamOh my God, now I have to put up with this too. I can’t believe the nerve. What does he expect?! He never thinks of anyone else. It’s damned if you do or damned if you don’t.

Feeling better after reading this? Of course not. But each day many of us inflict barrages like this on our poor adrenal system voluntarily.

We can do ourselves and our nervous system a huge favor by recognizing the top three categories of stress talk and replacing or releasing them to the fiery pit from which they came.

Extremes:

In this sample, extremes are pushing you off a cliff fast. Phrases like “OMG”, can’t believe” and all-inclusive generalizations or abstractions box us in. There’s a reason for the phrase “two horns of a dilemma”- it’s a false choice.

We have probably been exposed to those tests where we have to make forced choices, Continue reading

Lighting the Mother Shadow

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For some women Mother’s Day is not an easy day. Daughters of mothers who could not nurture them experience emotional fallout that casts a shadow over this day and indeed their lives.2015-03-06-16-13-26

Clarissa Pinkola Estes writes about the Stone Child, stories and myths of the unmothered child. As women, we experience “collapsing” and a wild hunger that leads us to doubt ourselves, have difficulty seeing ourselves accurately, engage in risky or impulsive behaviors, and an inability to maintain healthy boundaries. We miss training in honoring our intuition, consciousness and common sense. To recover, women must grow their own internal mother to warm their hearts through meditation, connecting with nature, bodywork, and support from other women. We must come to terms with our mother shadow, for she never leaves us. We cannot escape the effects and should not. Our mother effect is the source of our creative energy. Our emotions are our guide to our next level for spiritual development.

Recently a group of women in my workshop Continue reading

LETTER TO MY STOMACH

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Well, my mid-section anyway. You are part of it with the intestines but that’s not really relevant. You see you have a gangle of nerves and I have always felt all my feelings in you, shaking and quivering with fear so many times. And I hate throwing up so I would just hold it all in. And then I found out I could sedate then nerves with comforting carbohydrates. stomach

But that’s not all. You see I have beat up on you all my life. Continue reading