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Sunday, September 27, 2009

Plush and Comfortable Entertainment

In the store a few days ago my husband pulled me to the electronic section to check out the big flat screens. The choice was between a 55" LCD and a 52" plasma. He proclaimed his intentions of getting a big screen next year with the tax money. Sounds good to me. There are so many ways we could make out entertainment area better. There are home theater systems and furnishings that are not just practical and quality improving, they are downright luxurious. When I first heard of home theater furnishings I immediately thought of movie house type chairs--ick. these are nothing like that, though. The home theater equipment and furnishings are plush and comfortable. Big overstuffed easy chairs, soft comfortable couches, and equipment to make any picture come to life in your living room, family room, or where ever you set up the theater. For us it makes perfect sense because we do not go out to movies often. We enjoy watching them at home much more. So bringing a full and rich experience into our home is worth the effort.

My New Car

I have a picture of my new car. You have to ignore the weeds and all but the car looks great. It is fantastic to have a nice car again. I had a truck and it was nice. Great as trucks go actually, but I missed having a normal car. Here it is.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Making Medical Trips Easier

One of the scariest things in the world is knowing you need important surgery or medical care but it can't be found near home. Even elective surgeries that need to be traveled to obtain make the cost of health care go up enormously. Most of the time medical travel is not covered by insurance either. Family members need to go along in some cases and that only complicates the cost and the planning. It helps to find a travel planner who can coordinate all aspects of your medical travel from where family members can stay to making your personal connections. When you need medical care it is the last time you need to be concerned with the hassles of planning travel.

Lose Weight and Quit Smoking

It is possible to lose weight while quitting smoking! In the past week I've lose 9 pounds. Of course, I gained those pounds during the first two months quitting. LOL. It's all good though. If I'd done some of the things like chewing gum, planning daily menus, and exercising at the beginning I probably wouldn't have even gained them in the first place. Either way it is a small price to pay to get my lungs back.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Picture Perfect

Technology in photo development always excites me but the pictures themselves aren't the only way modern memories are improved with new developments. I adore using a digital frame to hold digital images. You can even get digital frames that rotate between pictures so you are never bored looking at the same shot. Keeping a digital picture frame on your desk at work, or on your wall at home keeps your pictures beautifully presented for everyone to see.

Calories are King but Exercise is Vital

I've been using my stationary bike/elliptical machine daily now since restarting my diet. I had stopped using it for several months. I think it was partly the depression from quitting cigarettes but I just couldn't get motivated to do anything including exercise. They say exercise helps that feeling but it's a vicious circle, how do you get motivated to do something that will help break the depression when you can't get out of the depression? It took me so long to put this thing together back when I got it that I have to make good use of it. It really is a great way to work out at home. Here's a picture of it being put together in my living room a few months ago when I got it.

Help With Dieting

No matter how hard you work at it dieting is tough. There is no shame in getting help when you need it. When you choose a weight loss supplement make sure you investigate all of the possibilities thoroughly and feel comfortable with the effectiveness and safety of your choice. There are many wonderful diet aides on the market today. The numbers of products can make choosing the one that is right for you confusing. Start by selecting products from a company you trust and read reviews and tips. Understand what makes a diet work and know that even with help from a good aide dieting will take work. There is no magic pill that will do it all for you.

Full Plate

It looks like a lot of food. In some ways it is. It's 2 servings of vegetables (peas) 2 servings of mashed potatoes, and 2 servings of chicken but because they are all relatively low calorie and fit into my daily amounts for the day that was dinner. It looks like even more than it is because I put it on a plate that is roughly half the size of a standard dinner plate. How food looks and the appearance of quantity can go a long way in making it taste better, feel like more, and leaving you more satisfied when on a diet.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

New Car New Insurance

My very old, but trusty truck broke down a few weeks ago. The brakes went out completely. I finally got it towed in to have it checked out a few days ago and just got the news that it is DOA (dead on its axles). So I called my trusty car guy and told him I needed him to keep an eye out for something cheap but dependable because my ancient truck has gone to meet the great motor maker in the sky. I guess it is time to start looking around for free insurance quotes too. I'll need new insurance and I've been thinking about looking around for a different company. Like most people I'm not fond of rocking the boat but it is important now and then to see if you're getting the best deals you can get. Having insurance isn't just smart it's a law so you may as well make sure it's the best that you can get.

Getting The Spark

I rejoined Spark People. It's a great absolutely FREE weight loss community on line. They have everything the other weight loss places have. It's all very high tech. I really need to lose these quit smoking pounds and get on with the weight loss I was working on last year. SparkPeople dot com is a great way to do it. I feel fantastic already and it's only been a day.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Burning Fat

If I had known what a powerful drug Nicotine really was, and how it not only physically damaged the body but mentally altered the brain worse than the most powerful street drug I know for a fact I never would have started it. Unfortunately I did not so now I am dealing with withdrawals and all that goes with it including weight gain. As much as I don't like using aides sometimes it is necessary to find a good, high quality weight loss aide and when you are quitting smoking it is very necessary. I need to find a diet aide that goes beyond an appetite suppressant because withdrawals have slowed down my metabolism as well. I need to find high quality fat burners to pick up the slack and help offset the extra pounds while I am less active and my body is burning less. Between having to find alternatives to oral cravings and beating the depressed mood swings and not wanting to do anything the pounds are really starting to pile on.

Friday, September 11, 2009

10 Weeks

I don't want to bore you with a continuous countdown of my quitting smoking but it is such a big thing in my life. In many ways it takes over everything I do, and the way I do it as well.

I'm not sure if this will work but this is my smoke'meter'. I'm going to post it in my sidebar too to keep track of my time without the 'Nicodemon'. (okay, nope didn't work. Hopefully it will work in the sidebar. It's a cool thing because it shows money saved too.) EDIT: Perfect, it is above the main posts here as a permanent leader. That works.

I'm in a good, and yet slightly dangerous spot in my 'quit'. I'm at a place where I no longer think about actually smoking a cigarette anymore. I don't even want to. That sounds good, and it is in many ways but in some ways it allows me to put my guard down a bit too. This is dangerous because although my cravings are no longer there, the after effects of years of a smoke clouded mind are still very strong. I have trouble concentrating and there are moments of depression and anxiety that are not normal for me. I am having trouble working which is more a matter of not having any motiviation or desire to do the work than it is inability to actually do it.

This is a dangerous and tricky time and I need to keep talking about it in order to remind myself that I still have a ways to go--it's not a clear sail just yet.

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Frank J. Hanna III

I do not know many people who can consider themselves such a success that the Pope honors their accomplishments. Frank J. Hanna III has contributed to many Catholic charities and the Pope himself bestowed on him the Grand Cross in the Order of Saint Gregory. Frank J. Hanna III has many duties and serves as a board member of the Papal Foundation and much more. He is a visionary who truly exemplifies the ideal of 'giving back.'

What makes this important to me is that Frank J. Hanna III is an author too. His book "What Your Money Means: And How To Use It Well" shows people how to develop a healthy relationship with their money rather than letting it control them. That is a very important tool in today's world that is so preoccupied with money. It's the fact that he has taken his knowledge and turned into a helpful resource that intrigues me.

Frank J. Hanna III goes a step further in his humanitarian work by providing a blog of financial information for anyone who wants to learn more about how to control their money and make it work for them. Mr. Hanna is truly an example of what you give you get.

Rerun Love

I'm sitting here watching "Home Improvement" reruns. It is a show I've seen a million times, and that's not even much of an exageration. It made me wonder what makes a show "classic" enough to be something you would watch over and over again. It isn't like they are all like that. Even shows you like aren't something you would want to watch more than once let alone several times. That point was brought home a few days ago when Bob was cruising channels and saw a rerun of one of his cop shows. I instantly cringed. It is a show I enjoy watching first run but I don't want to see it over and over. So why are other shows so loveable that you could watch them repeatedly? Is it a chord they strike with your own life? I think that might be it. Bob could have watched that cop show repeatedly and enjoyed it. I couldn't. There must be a lot of people who have similar tastes to mine because many of my all time favorite shows are the ones that are shown constantly in reruns.

Monday, September 07, 2009

African Music Notes From Mohammed Babangida

I find the information on African music given by Mohammed Babangida very interesting. African music is the root of all music and Mr. Babangida has a very full and structured look at how it has effected the world's music. Because music is such a huge part of most of our lives it is important to know what cultural links it has to our past as well. I know for my part a song can trigger memories, feelings, emotions, and just inspire with a raw passion. African music has that raw quality that connects deep down inside.

Mohammed Babangida explains a lot about that raw quality in talking about the timbre, or sound quality, of African music and how it shares that aspect with all music forms that have developed, but especially with Jazz.

Another insightful note from Mohammed Babangida is how African music instills the same outter qualities that make modern music resonate with audiences. How it connects the artist to the audience and draws them together in the experience. Not only does Mr. Babangida fully detail how the musical experience has developed but he also does something very beneficial for people like me who only have a surface appreciation for Jazz and that is completely breaking down all of the various types of Jazz music and how they differ. He brings to life a style of music that is hard to understand and makes it familiar and friendly.

Little Johnny

Johnny is so at home now that he has taken to flying room to room after me. Johnny is my new cockatiel. I've had him for about a month. In that month he's become more and more loving and much more attached to me than any of my birds. He's the only one that won't let me leave the room without him. He will play on his own and every so often come waddling over to be petted, then go back to playing and as long as I'm sitting here he is fine. Up until the other day I've been able to leave the room and he'd stay on his play stand but not anymore. He is confident now and simply flies after me.

Survey Resource Center Leads The Way

Most businesses rely on a good source of leads to get sales but the insurance and finance industries can't do without them. Survey Resource Center provides valuable leads that are targeted to specific needs. These allow callers to be sure they are contacting only the people that really want to hear from them. These leads also give companies a great way to build their mailing list so that their offers aren't falling on deaf ears but are finding individuals who have a real interest in their offerings.

Survey Resource Center provides a very valuable resource on both ends. They give sales people justified leads that won't waste their valuable time. They also help the consumers by making sure the people that contact them are only those that truly have a product the consumer will be interested in.

The information provided by the Survey Resource Center is updated regularly so that businesses can be sure that they are getting fresh resources.

Little Planes

Watching "Snow Dogs" tonight my husband pointed out the little two-seater plane most commonly used to fly from point to point in rugged Alaska and said that's the type of plane we'll be flying in when we go to Alaska.

Um... not me. I'll stay in the major city we land in and he can go off flying in an itty bitty tin can hundreds of feet in the icy air. Not me. I wouldn't even get in one of those little things to take flying lessons to get my pilot's license after getting all the ground work and passing the ground test. There's no way I'm dying in Alaska.

K-Designers Gets The Job Done Right

Yesterday I realized my husband is never going to commit to moving. I thought we would finally get that together in the course of the next year. We might still if I can manage to make it happen myself which is the only way anything ever gets done. Talking to him yesterday made it clear he was going to do the typical hemming and hawing he always does. He hates change. He's no good at it and his typical behavior is to just duck and avoid it. At first I got angry. Then I got obsinant (quietly) and thought to myself it is just going to have to happen he doesn't have an option. Then I started to think about what would happen if I can't make it go my way. I'll be stuck here and I don't want to be. I decided that it was time to get serious about making this house a place I would want to stay in if that happens. That means hiring a designer like K-Designers. I can't do it myself.

I wish I was handy like some people and could do the work myself. I think it's great when people can do projects themselves. Of course I can do some without the help of a company like K-Designers but not the big things. Not stuff like cabinets, countertops, ceramic tile flooring, new bathroom fixtures. I'm not good at that stuff. I've tried in the past... hence the need for some serious consideration on making the house some place I'd like to stay. It just doesn't turn out right.

When you choose a company like K-Designers to do your remodeling you know the finished product will look professional. You can be proud of the way your rooms look. That's what I want. I don't want anymore projects that look nice until you take a closer look and see raw edges, or missed spots. I think DIY shows and books give people too much hope that they can do big things themselves. Some jobs take experience and practice to know how to do something right and there's no way someone with one house, or one room to do is ever going to get the practice and experience to do a job professionally.

One Of Those Lightbulb Moments

I had one of those lightbulb moments today and it was my Amazon parrot who delivered it. In a strange way little things around you can bring revelations you didn't expect. Goober, my big green Yellow Nape Amazon parrot loves to immitate me. He says all kinds of things that he picks up from exclamations and everyday language around the house--no, nothing off color, just funny things like "oh wow", "whoa", "hey, stop"... he says that and a whole lot more, but mostly just goofy stuff. It never ceases to amuze me what he comes up with now and again. I've often laughed at his little 'clear the throat' noise he makes and know that he got it from me. I used to always clear my throat in the mornings. Today he is stuck on that noise. He appears to be amuzing himself with it, but it drove a very poignant point home to me. Just how much I did use to do that, and that I don't do it AT ALL anymore. Why? Becasue I quit smoking 2 months ago. Now, I know that I've been feeling better in some ways, but I've been focusing on some of the bad points of quiting -- withdrawal wise. The depression, the weigh gain, things I have been harping on myself to get under control, and get it under control fast because it's causing havoc in my life. It wasn't until this morning, listening to my precocious bird that I realized instead of focusing on the difficulties I should be rejoicing in the positive changes not smoking has brought my life. Here's a picture of the goofy bringer of powerful revelations:

Friday, September 04, 2009

Home Medical Equipment

My mother-in-law is dealing with terminal cancer. She's in her late 70s and having a really hard time of it. There has been so much we've had to get for her to make living possible. Now that it's getting toward the end she needs even more. She was in the hospital recently and is now in a nursing facility for some rehab but still hoping to get back home again. If she can get back home she will need lots of extra medical equipment including a hospital bed brought in. Medicare pays for a lot of the equipment she has received in the past few years, but bigger items like the bed are thankfully covered by the local hospice organization. If it were something to be used repeatedly like a hospital would it makes sense to buy it but she isn't going to be using it for that long. They have equipment they bring in especially for individual patients in her situation. So I hope she can get back home. I know it means a lot to her.

Frustrated and Fed Up

Health insurance is very confusing. I'm sitting here with a brand new card in my hand. My husband handed it to me before he left this week for work. It's the same insurance we've always had. A very, very prominent name in health care providers too so it's not a fly by night company. There is a vision policy attached to it but I cannot for the life of me find out what the specifics of the insurance are, and where I can use it. I've tried just about everything I possibly can. It is giving me a royal headache. They (the insurance companies) make it hard on purpose I think. If you can't figure it out, maybe you won't use it. It's just about frustrating enough to make that true too.

Thursday, September 03, 2009

Accessorize Your Car

My car is sitting at the end of my driveway right now awaiting the moment I can afford to get it fixed. The breaks went out suddenly on me a few weeks ago. I don't use my car much so I can afford to be without it. Now for most people that's certainly not an option. My husband could not afford to be without his car for a day. He wouldn't be able to get to work. Actually I wouldn't be able to get along without at least his car to go shopping once or twice a week too. His car also has all the possible new gadgets in it. Before my car broke down I was shopping around looking for car accessories to add to it to bring it up to speed with 'modern' cars that come with all those nifty things. In my searches I've found things even my husband's car doesn't, or rather didn't, have. It does now. He's become quite addicted to some of the places that sell extra fun or interesting accessories for cars.


My husband asked me the other day about Twitter. He's asked before what it is about but never really tried it. He still hasn't. The reason it came up is the commercial that's on television now that mentions it in a cute little skit. He says it makes no sense to him. Actually, I think if anyone, even those who love it, actually sat back and pondered the concept it wouldn't make much sense to them either. Blogs make some sense. You can actually get full concepts across. I admit, there's more interaction on Twitter, at least it seems like it, but the talk is largely gibberish and one-liners. It gets old quick. When you are active in it you get caught up, but the moment you step away like I have for the past few months you come back to reality. You look at it and think about how silly the actual concept of it is. Like many time diversions on line, that's really all it is.

The Eyes Have It

I don't know about you, but I know that as I got older I noticed how much more help I needed to look good, even just to me. I really don't work hard at making myself look good to others, or even be up to par according to fashion magazines. I'm an average woman and it is a losing battle. I do, however, want to look good to myself when I look in a mirror. I use a wrinkle eye cream daily and it really helps my favorite feature--my eyes--stand out. I avoid wearing a lot of makeup, but I like to highlight my eyes. I think it's really all I need to do along with a touch of lip gloss, or if really going all out, some lipstick. Making the most out of my eyes doesn't work if they look tired and old so that's why I take so many pains to keep them looking as good as possible.