Sunday, March 21, 2010

Measuring Time via the Vernal Equinox

So the weekend has come and nearly gone. With it, has gone the vernal equinox. In years gone by the equinox has been used to measure time and inform people of the seasons long before Farmer's Almanac became available. Even now many use this special moment where light and dark spend equal time inhabiting our day to mark the passing of time and to determine their progress in both agricultural efforts as well as personal goals. Personally, I use it for the latter.

So where am I on my personal goals? Exhausted! Sadly that is very true. I had hoped to have more forward momentum in my year than has come to pass. Sometimes I think that it is the result my needing to be here, right where I am, on this path rather than making what I consider to be progress. Then sometimes I wonder if perhaps I am not trying hard enough, if I'm not focused enough, selective enough, persevering enough. To take responsibility...meaning to be able to respond appropriately and be accountable is perhaps an act of realism and objectivity that I am not capable of. Self-judgment is such a slippery slope. I know few who can apply it with equanimity and equipoise to appropriately gauge progress. Rather many of us fall into the trap of unreasonable expectations of ourselves, self-loathing and disappointment.

Although I feel somewhat at odds with my progress by this first quarter's end, I have taken time out to enjoy being in the few days of sunny warm weather, noticing the new buds on the trees, the rapid progress of the crocus as it rose through the ground one day and bloomed the next, the magnificent sidewalk chalk art of my neighbors, and my dog stealing my neighbor's basketball when he unwittingly invited her to join the game (never offer my dog a ball you're not willing to lose). I even sat out on the bench swing in the sun eating ice cream with my darling daughter enjoying the warmth and displaying my white legs to the golden sun. No matter what our agendas and to-do lists, or how quickly our personal measures come at us, to let the transition into spring pass unnoticed may well be more detrimental to our well-being than sticking with our plans.

So how have you experienced this transition into spring whether on the actual day of the equinox, or just a lovely day that felt like spring to you? Do you have any rituals by which you welcome this time of year? Do you use the equinox to measure events in your life? If so, how?

May this new season bring us all many blessings in addition to the abundant new life we are now witnessing.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Guess Who's Coming For Dinner!

Picture courtesy of and Mireille Guiliano

Of all the blogs I read, many of those authors are fans of Mireille Guiliano. I was very excited to discover today that she is publishing a cookbook. Sadly there was no content info on Amazon and I've seen no mention of it on her website. I didn't even see a release date. I'm certain I'm not the only one to be excited by this news. Anyone else out there excited to see what this will be all about?

Sunday, March 7, 2010

More Luxury for Less

I feel pampered when I have a soak in a hot bath and a pedicure. Unfortunately my current bathtub is very shallow making it difficult to enjoy a good soak, but I still have my pedis. I do the pedi myself, always have. I know a lot of people pay to have them done, but ultimately, it takes the same amount of time and energy to do it myself, without the added cost.

I started doing pedis in 2004 after I kept hearing my mind say "paint your toenails red". After hearing that for the umpteenth time, I decided I might as well do it even though I'd not painted my toenails since I was a kid. Surprisingly I was thrilled with the results. Now don't go getting all freaked out because I did what the voice in my head told me to do. We all have chatter in our heads. What is challenging, and most rewarding, is when we are able to separate our inner guidance (helping us to live our best lives) from our monkey mind (incessant chatter directing us away/distracting us from our path). I like to think of it as my soul directing me. Showing yet again that joy and happiness is something we can create for ourselves.

Regardless, pretty toes are a great way to start the week. :)

How do you feel most pampered? Is it indulging in a high end or pricey item or service? Or is it something you do for yourself? Or when have you listened to that little voice in your head that kept telling you to do something you thought was odd, but when you did it gave you loads of pleasure?

Update March Monthly Designs

The weather is beautiful here! Up to high 40s. The photo above is of my lilies waking. Very exciting.

March Designs Update
1. Continue one in/one out - Got a few things and preparing a Goodwill donation
2. No book buying - Done
3. Cook at home 3x/wk - Only 2x
4. Weekly week in review post about my monthly design accomplishments - Done
5. Daily exercise of at least 30min - All days except no consecutive 30 min on Mon & Tues
6. Cease eating by 7pm - All but 2 days
7. limit refined sugar to 1 serving 2x/wk. - needs work, 4 days
8. Increase veggie intake - Only slightly

Overall I'm moving in the right direction. I'm pleased with my exercise accomplishments, but need to pay more attention and effort to the food goals. Yesterday I enjoyed lovely walks and yard work. Woke up a bit sore today. Amazing how joyful it feels to work in the yard. Entertainment and exercise for zero money.