Live, Laugh, Love


Living is what we do daily and how we do it greatly impacts everyone around us.

Have you ever noticed that laughter is contagious? Think about it – name one time that regardless of the circumstances you were unable to at least smile inside over the deep, real, engaging laughter of someone truly happy about something. And you can tell – a fake laugh never makes it to the eyes. For an example of truly happy laughter watch a child abandon themselves to it.

Their eyes light up, they grab their tummy, and they roll with it. The entire body gets involved in true laughter. And with cheeks hurting, sides splitting, and breath coming in short gasps – you feel a release inside. A welling up of happiness, satisfaction, and peace.

They say laughter is the best medicine and in some cases they’re right. Laughter allows our body to produce chemicals that make us feel better. The better we feel the more we laugh… the more of the chemicals our brain produces, and the better we feel… it’s an amazingly beautiful circle of life – that most of us pass up in lieu of more important things

School, work, chores, home, bills, children, responsibilities. These things all take a toll on our ability to laugh freely and with abandon. Or at least we generally give them the power to do so. Have you ever opened a bill and started laughing? No, not many people do – unless it’s the sarcastic “they really think I have that kind of money” type of laugh.

No, adults tend to have more and more on their plates to prevent that whole-hearted laughter from pressing in and making them feel better.

Without laughter this no real living. Without true living there is no real love.

We must learn to embrace this life with laughter. Find the humor in the small things and let yourself get carried away with it from time to time. It won’t hurt – I promise… well… maybe just a little soreness in the cheeks from smiling and in the ribs from laughing… but it’s a good pain – and the great feelings you get are worth it.

Want an even better feeling? Lose it with your kids! Show them how to laugh with such utter abandon that you literally roll on the floor laughing out loud. They’ll enjoy it, and I promise – so will you!

What makes you laugh out loud?

June


And we all know that I’m so good at announcing the month by now, right?

Yeah. June is upon us in my little corner of crazy. I wonder some days… is it just me or does it seem to everyone that 2014 seems to be zipping past at the speed of light?

I don’t know what is up with that, but… I think I’m ready for it to STOP.

So, June is supposed to be house shopping month. Only, we’ve heard things. Things that might be slowing down the process… not things from really good sources mind you – frantic ramblings of a desperately demented woman; who would do anything to ruin your parade given any opportunity… so I take it all with a grain of salt and count my blessings; that storm too will eventually play itself out.

June is also supposed to be “retirement” month for me. I’m not sure what to think about this. I’ve been working at one job or another since I was 15. That’s the better part of 30 years. I don’t know what I’ll do with myself. Oh, wait… yes I do.

Chickens, goats, ducks, geese, cows, and pigs. That is what I’ll do. Starting small with chickens and goats. Moving forward with cows and pigs once I’ve got my handles on the others… maybe, just maybe even a horse – you know… just to get around.

Gads, there is so much to do… and so little time in which to do it. I can only hope that we’re prepared for this challenge. Oh, and that everything falls into place at just the right time – as things tend to do.

Happy Thursday!

Anticipation


June is almost upon us. I find this remarkable. It seems that just yesterday we were celebrating the new year – and now suddenly we’re six months in! Whew – talk about time flying.

We are supposed to start shopping for our homestead this month. Choosing a property to which we will retire and become self sustaining. I anticipate this being many things… a lot of work, exciting, and even heart rending I’m sure as we agonize over which place will suit us best.

I want to be closer to my grandsons – and am being pulled in that direction. Yet I don’t really want to leave these mountains, and I honestly don’t think he does either. So… we shall shop – and we shall find that perfect place… the one for us. And we shall homestead the hell out of it.

What about you, what would  you look for in a new abode?

Things I’m Pretty Sure I’ll Need to Know


You know, moving is never easy. It is always an experience – most often a bad one. Yet, here I stand. Two years shy of 50 preparing to retire and embark on the most challenging journey of my life. This is going to be interesting to say the least. I’m sure that it will be fraught with peril. And joy. I know there will be a lot of joy.

Soon, our lives will change forever and we join countless others making a trip back. Back to a time where each and every family could sustain its own members with the fruits of their labor. Where a bushel of tomatoes was worth a pound or so of flour, or sugar. A time when working meant something – and not working meant you may not survive the winter. It’s not a lifestyle for the faint of heart, this is for sure.

Animals don’t care that you’re in pain, sick, or tired… they must be tended to every single day, regardless of the circumstances. Crops cannot be left to moulder in the field because you don’t “feel” like doing anything today. One night could mean total loss. You don’t get a pass on your birthday, sick days, or vacation.

Each and every day is another opportunity to provide security for yourself and your family. There are some pretty specific skills that are required to do something like this… Things I’m pretty sure I’ll need to know:

  • Canning and preserving vegetables, meats, and fruits
  • Growing, tending, and harvesting a year round garden to feed 4
  • Raising and caring for goats, chickens, pigs, and eventually cows
  • Making paper, soap, laundry detergent, and other toiletries
  • Rainwater catchment and purification skills
  • Basic first aid – human and animal
  • Irrigation, carpentry, basic plumbing
  • Fire Building and charcoal production
  • more, much, much, more…

You know, there is a lot that goes into becoming self sustaining. I know that it’s not going to be easy… sometimes it’s not going to be exactly “fun”… but all the time it’s going to be rewarding. That’s what counts. Utilizing your God given skills to care for yourself. I’m excited to begin this next phase of my life. I know that my future holds untold adventures. I look forward to sharing the experience with you all. Stay tuned…

Update


Wow, so Aprils challenge left me seriously wanting. Wanting my hands to stop that everlasting ache. Wanting to sleep a full night without numbness and tingling waking me up. Wanting to lose 10 lbs to take the pressure of knees and lower back. Wanting most especially to complete the A-Z… this did not happen, and I am disappointed. I think I’ll make a project out of completing the challenge – just over the course of the year not a month. *sigh* Chronic pain disorders suck.

I’ve dealt with Fibromyalgia for the last 12 years. I’ve had tendonitis for the last 8 years. And now in the last two years rheumatoid arthritis has set in. I guess I should have taken better care of my body when I had the chance.

But its okay. I fully believe that our upcoming lifestyle changes will see much better results than any pharmaceutical could do. We are closer to the beginning of this journey. So ready to get this “party” started. Home shopping will come soon enough.

We were blessed enough to visit a friend yesterday living in just the situation we hope to have soon – and it was beautiful. Lush gorgeously forested areas, chicken coops, plenty of area for crops, cows, goats, and pigs. It was perfect for what we want to accomplish. I hope we can find such a great place ourselves when the time comes. I hope we get to remain here in my beloved mountains – it’s just home.

That’s what’s up with us… hope you are having a lovely week!

A-Z update


Wow… it’s been a week already – and its only Wednesday! So, here’s the scoop guys…

I’ve got Rheumatoid arthritis in my hands… it decided to flare up on Thursday last week. I’ve been unable to post since. Using my hands when they’re in the middle of a flare like that is impossible. The back of my right hand was so swollen it looked like someone had stuffed a marble under my knuckles… it was pretty painful. After some ice, and a few days of rest and pain meds/steroids for the inflammation I’m feeling much better – and so I shall pick up with E where I left off tomorrow morning. I am hoping to get caught up, and  ahead tomorrow… without throwing myself into another flare up.

Happy A-Z!

A-Z Blogging Challenge – F


F

F is for Family

Family is so very important in ones life… but not just the family we’re connected to by blood. The family that we build around ourselves can sometimes be even more important to us than those to whom we are connected.

Now, don’t get me wrong –  my mom, kids, grandparents… those people mean more to me than any other… but they’re not always the most important at any given time.

You see, we’ve been grafted into the family of God. Joint heirs with Jesus to the kingdom. That family – the relationship with Jesus. His is the most important relationship in ones life – and without him there is no hope for other relationships to work.

But there are people too, people who are in your life to be a blessing or even to be a trial… to teach a lesson that otherwise could not be learned. Some of these people become so deeply rooted in our hearts that they become part of our earthly family. Friends so dear that it would be like losing part of ourselves to lose them.

Then there are our spouses. They should be closer than a brother. Your spouse should be your best friend. Someone you can tell anything, be yourself with always, and that share your hopes and dreams as if they were their own. Someone who loves you as you love yourself… as we are commanded to love each other. This is family – biblically its the start of a “new family”, a cleaving of man to wife – a separation of blood family and the beginning of the heart family.

These friendships, or kinships – they’re important to how we perceive the world. These friendships help shape us into who we are, and who we will be in the future.

Treat your friends well. Shower them with love. Let them know how much you care – for tomorrow may be too late.

Happy F Day!