STAY YOUNG WITH A SENSE OF HUMOR

 

 

old ladies laughing1

STAY YOUNG WITH A SENSE OF HUMOR as a blog post has developed over a period of time and after some conversation on Face Book last week, I decided to give it the spotlight.  My first thought has to be a reflection on a photo I saw years ago about friendship of two elderly ladies full of wrinkles laughing themselves silly. Covered in wrinkles the viewer could see the children in them. This is the focus and sorry, not a miracle cream or solution for always looking 20 but enjoying the 50’s, 60’s, 70’s and 80’s and more like a 20 year old would do but with the added wisdom which usually comes with age.old ladies laughing

I will start with a little confession and let’s see if you can relate. When I was in my 20’s, I was a lot smaller inweight than now. I wore the tight bell bottom jeans, the body hugging tops and could still get in a bikini….imagine that! I barely ate a normal meal and was consumed with keeping slim. I thought, acted, reacted with all of my personal focus was on me and my body. Now, I think all of that stress and worry had to have put a few wrinkles, right? It sounds like sabotage to me. While all of this worry and stress and not eating regularly, I also screwed up my metabolism which means what? I made it harder to maintain a normal weight. I think it is becoming clear why it is somewhat funny how that worked.

Let me be blunt. I am what I am and I am not vain but I feel we need to take care of ourselves but not to the point of vanity. I saw a photo recently and itlooked as if the person was living in the past, trying to dress like a teenager with a hairstyle not suitable for this person, and it hit me. Also, and I have been guilty of this before of posting pictures of years gone by of youthful bodies and clothing. This process can be therapeutical if we have a great sense of humor and maybe say, “Did I look like that?” Is this ringing a bell with anyone? If you do it as a humorous gesture, that is good but if we are trying to prove something that we are all that and a pack of chips, we are fooling ourselves.

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I say this to bring us to a point. Here is my philosophy of staying young as we get older:

1) Color your hair or welcome the gray. It is coming or is already there. Laugh about it being there as part of your wise days coming. You have never seen a spiritual guru with blonde hair, right?

2) If your body doesn’t match the photos you display on social media, wear appropriate clothes. Maybe keep a few pieces of those old clothes (like a museum piece) and pull them out occasionally and try to get one leg in them and have a great laugh.

old timers

3) If you exercise, do it wisely. But let’s get real we can’t bend like we used to so let’s don’t try to impress those tiny creatures in the gym. Remember the old song, “Your day will come.” Hum it while you struggle with the machines or weights and it will get you through. Remember the biggest accomplishment of exercise is you remembered to do it; and it doesn’t last for days, only the soreness.

4) Post good photos and scrap the bad ones. I am smiling as I had this happen yesterday and I worked a few facial muscles (good to fight wrinkles by smiling a lot) when I had changed the way my bangs fall on my face and I was told several times people loved my “do” and it made me look much younger. That was a good compliment but what resonated with my sense of humor is I must have been looking pretty dang old with my bangs hanging down. See, a good laugh is good for the soul and no products were purchased for me to enjoy life and its moments of enlightenment. Their comments were sent with love but you have to see the humor in them too.

Arline Bed Head

5) Take compliments graciously and one of the wonders of aging is it is easier to forget any negative feedback. I realized while observing a few things about aging that result in why older people usually look happier:

Eyesight gets worse so naturally everyone looks prettier even yourself.

    Memory fades so you don’t have the ability to rehash old arguments because you are busy trying to remember who they are.

    You can be yourself as most people seem to be more accepting of other’s faults and it is easier to laugh at crankiness.

Life is appreciated more at an older age as you start realizing a lot of your friends are missing and no one has posted Missing Person fliers. Hmmm???

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In summary, I say to each and everyone of us who are aging: Welcome it. Embrace it. Look in the mirror and take in every wrinkle, scar, puffy eye, graying eyebrows, thinning hair, and cheeks that have gotten fluffier, and have a good laugh. Look back in the mirror and see the love in your eyes for your family and hopefully for God. See the results of the struggles, defeats and the victory over those same things. Life is a combination and full of seasons which come and go like our waistlines. LIVE LIFE; LOVE LIFE; and LIVE LIFE TO THE FULLEST BY HAVING A GOOD LAUGH WITH YOURSELF.old lady dressing young

(C) COPYRIGHT 2012-2017 Arline Miller with all rights and privileges reserved. Third party material is sourced to original location if noted. Photos may or may not be property of Sipping Cups.

 

 

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A DAYLILY NAMED DETERMINATION

A DAY LILY NAMED DETERMINATION will be a short post but one with a deep meaning. I hope you enjoy it and that you see a deep message for everyone.

We moved a couple of weeks ago from a home we loved and had lived in it 11 years. Greg, my husband had worked along with his helper Robert to keep it immaculate and beautiful. I hesitated at the thought of leaving so many hours of tender loving care along with a bunch of sweat and blistered hands. People would stop and stare when the day lilies hit their peak and we posted hundreds of photos over the years. Most of the day lilies and some special lilies had been given to us from my Mom who was a terrific gardener with beautiful roses, amaryllis, etc but her love were her day lilies. She loved giving anyone who visited her the “tour” and I was impressed she remembered their names. Mom passed away in 2010 and it became even more important to keep her day lily spirit alive.

As we sold our home very fast and had found one to buy in my husband’s home town, it became frantic to get everything packed and ready for the movers AND to schedule digging up those special day lilies. No, we didn’t take all of them but we split the plants and then cut the tops off and placed in a tub that we could get water to the roots.

It took two weeks before my husband found some help to actually create a new day lily bed in the front yard and then plant the plants. It was amazing to see they were green and seemed anxious to take their spot to show off next season. We had no hope of them blooming again since they had bloomed for a long time in May and even June.

To the point and focus of this blog message and DETERMINATION showing up. Greg came in the home yesterday and said “Look at this!” and held his phone camera up so I could see the photo. To my surprise, there was a day lily bloom in our new bed. I almost cried but said to Greg, “That’s determination if I have ever seen it. It has been chopped, separated, dug up, transported and stored for two weeks and then it shows out by blooming within a week of being put into our new yard. Determination, that is the best name for it.”

First Daylily at 118 Ansley Determination
This is our first day lily at our home in Tifton and I want to rename it Determination.

I realized the meaning of determination by this little delicate day lily who refused to lay still even after all of the struggle of being displaced and living for a while in a dark space. In life itself, what if we exercised that much discipline and determination when things got rough? Let’s see; Chopped…at some point in our lives, we are disconnected or chopped from family or friends; later jobs; Separated by relationships, distance, death, etc. and the feeling has to be loneliness; Dug Up and relocated by circumstances out of our control; Transported into a new environment even if is due to a happy occurrence like marriage or moving back home; Stored Away or as I say, forgotten by old friends and relatives as their lives or yours gets too busy to schedule a time to see each other or even call. Replanted into a new life, new surroundings, new challenges and sometime a new home can cause an adjustment period and it can take time to feel at home and start a new growth and good seasons.

LIVE LIFE, LOVE LIFE, AND LIVE LIFE TO THE FULLEST BY DETERMINING WHERE YOU WANT TO BE AND WHO YOU WANT TO BE WITH IN LIFE.

(C) COPYRIGHT Arline Miller 2012-2017 with all rights and privileges reserved. All photos are not exclusively the property of Sipping Cups unless stated.

WHEN THE MOVE MOVES YOU

WHEN THE MOVE MOVES YOU is the topic for my blog today after moving to a different town and setting up a new home (or at least new to us) and thinking about all of the changes and how to react to those changes. Years ago, we discussed moving to my husband’s home town and I was a little hesitant. I came from a small town, Douglas, and I had become accustomed to a larger city. It was a double concern since not only is Tifton, even though larger than Douglas but I know very few people here. Now, that move has happened and we are settled in, I felt I would share some thoughts on how this move has moved me and Greg.

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We started packing and culling a month before the move. I am not sure that was a good idea or not. It seems as if we have been moving for a couple of months and no moving should go on that length of time (grinning at how much “stuff” we had accumulated over the past 11 years) and even before then as we should have culled a lot before we moved to our last home. As we went through the attic items, a thought hit me when I saw things I thought were precious possessions and I realized I hadn’t even seen those items for 11 years and somehow I had not missed them. Of course, my heart was jubilant at their discovery. It seemed some sort of wonderment that I had made it through many years without knowing where this priceless treasure was. I began to feel the Antiques Roadshow excitement but then I realized they were still the same items I chose to place in the attic. Was this enlightenment teaching me something?

What I did find out was the longer it took to pack, the more I became willing to dispose or donate more and more items. The items’ importance became minimal as hours and boxes became maximal. I think the move was moving my internal relationship with material items.

As we entered the new home, I found myself, instead of feeling excited, I felt a little disappointed. It was not organized; it was not immaculate; it was not the fairy tale home I had envisioned. The move had moved me to emotional disarray. I had to act and act quickly. My daughter instinctively picked up on my anxiety and fell into cleaning and installing cleanliness into the drawers and cabinets. We started unpacking those mountains of boxes. My thought was why didn’t I cull more when I was packing. Did we really need all of that “stuff”?

moving

As days progressed and we stayed determined to unpack and organize, we found Greg and I made a great team. He unpacked the boxes, bagged the packing paper and bubble wrap, and tore down the boxes for recycling. I found places to store and display all of the items we did bring (with some more culling as I went for donations). It began to come together and I began to see a home instead of a house. Our new home became our home and this reaction moved me into a peaceful place.

One of the symbols of our happy life in our former home was our yards filled with a lot of remembrance of my Mother’s green thumb and how she had shared her bounty with us. Of course, part of the sale was an agreement Greg would dig up some of each of the day lilies, spider lilies, and her rhododendron plants as well as some of Greg’s priced purchased ones. As the home came together, it was very important to have love in our yards. Missy had given as a house warming present a beautiful hibiscus, a bright and beautiful yellow so it had to be on display to bring Missy’s love into the yard too. I am happy to say, Greg found some help since it required grass removal and a new, bright day lily bed in our front yard. I smiled as I looked at it and thought The Millers are here.

In summary, I want to express a lesson I have learned during the “move that moved me”. We are given and things are taken in life. Some of those changes are good changes; others are sad changes and may have profound effects on our emotional state. What I learned is to allow life to move you. Staying in the same place, with importance placed on unimportant segments only allows dust to accumulate. Either dust those items off and use them or get rid of them. I use this as an example of word play. Life gives us experiences which we place on the shelves or attics of our minds. We can polish those experiences and use the lessons, good or bad, in our lives to enhance or beautify our world. If an experience is so painful, we tuck it away but not discard it; we are only accumulating dust on our lives. We can either place it into proper perspective or learn to walk away from its memory. REMEMBER: Live Life; Love Life; and Live Life to the Fullest by allowing yourself to be moved.

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(C) Copyright 2012-2017 Arline Miller with rights and privileges reserved. Third party material is sourced to original location when known. Pictures are not property of Sipping Cups unless stated.

 

BRINGING THE BEST TO THE SURFACE

BRINGING THE BEST TO THE SURFACE has been brought to life with the recent move from Kathleen GA where we had made our home for 11 years. Both Greg and I have taken pride in our home and yards but it was shocking when the furniture pieces were removed and some dusty residue was visible. Yes, there was dust and little items which had escaped our hands and found refuge in a dark and quiet place. It was embarrassing but we had made arrangements for a final clean. Carpets were cleaned, dust all gone, walls, cabinets, and baseboards all freshened and with the house shining the doors were locked until the new owners take residence. I felt pride that we wanted the best to show without those shady reminders we are better on the surface apparently but made a promise to keep the hidden parts cleaner and shinier.  This brought me to the next phase for this topic…..our new home.

We had also arranged for the new home to receive a cleaning but had to rely on a stranger to clean and that was a mistake. However, we have to move past mistakes and make the most of life. When we viewed the home and as I always do, I looked at the “bones” of the home for potential. I had some reservations, which are now unfounded, about some colors on the walls and the layout. Without furniture, I could see the areas that needed TLC and it was pretty much visible on the surface. Now, for the unveiling of our move in adventure:

Missy, my daughter who was the number one trooper involved with the move pointed out the failures of the person who disappointed us with a pitiful job. We slowed down the unpacking and Missy went to work cleaning out drawers and cabinets as well as bathrooms. She replaced old shelf lining with fresh marble design contact paper and I saw the best coming to the surface, not only in the shelves and cabinets but in my daughter’s ability to take pride in any job she does. The love for cleanliness and organization had been passed down and she glowed while she scrubbed and swept along side of her Mom. Yes, things are best when viewed on the surface but she has learned and was practicing those values which are embedded deeply in her mind and body. The house began to shine both on the surface and in us from taking pride in what we do.

As I said in the beginning, we can make the surface appear all is well and pretty but how would we feel if the layers of our mind and soul were peeled away and the hidden places brought to the surface? Would we be happy and content for all to see? Or would we feel embarrassed as I did when the dust bunnies appeared from their dark, creepy places? I hope this is food for thought as we continue to structure our new home with intentions of moving the furniture more often, dusting in the dark corners, we will be conscious of moving our minds and souls to a clean and shiny environment.

Live Life; Love Life; and Live Life to the Fullest by bringing your best to the surface while dusting out the cobwebs of the soul.

(C) Copyright 2012-2017 Arline Miller with rights and privileges reserved. All third party material sourced to original location if known. Photos are not exclusively owned by Sipping Cups unless stated.

Don’t Hate Me; Love Me

Love heart hands

Since I am still in moving mode and am not able to write long posts, I thought my post on Facebook would hopefully inspire all of us to be more accepting and understanding to our fellow humans. Please think about the bigger picture. I wrote this as an American but the philosophy that love conquers all is universal. Please read older posts on the blog until I can get settled in our new home.

Love until it hurts

Sunday Morning Thought: As I watch the violence and uproar pitting one American against another American, this writing came to me. All of it will not apply to all of us but give some thought about how we are allowing hate to push love out of our world.

Love Me; Don’t Hate Me

Don’t hate me because I choose to speak out; love my passion.
Don’t hate me because I don’t speak out; love my self control.
Don’t hate me because of my skin color; love me because I am a human being.
Don’t hate me because of my gender; love my ability to do my part to enhance the world.
Don’t hate me because I am not rich or poor; love me for making the most out of my life.
Don’t hate me for having a strong faith in my life; love me for having faith in you as a person.
Don’t hate me for any physical beauty or even the lack of; love me for my inner self.
Don’t hate me for being Southern or Northern, West Coast or East Coast; love me for wanting to live in this great country.
Don’t hate me for what I eat or don’t eat; love me for being myself and allowing you the same.
Don’t hate me for whatever political party I choose; love me for having the freedom to choose.
Don’t hate me for respecting others; love me for respecting you.
Don’t hate me when I am right about an issue; love my ability to admit when I am wrong.
Don’t hate me for what I choose for a career; love me for doing jobs you wouldn’t do.
Don’t hate me for any flaws I have; love me for accepting those flaws in me and others.
Don’t hate me for any reason; love me as love conquers all hate in the world.

In other words, let us love each other for our differences united by compassion, understanding, tolerance, and justice. Until We Love Again…….Arline Miller

Love from quotesvalley.com

Side note: I found it ironic when I searched for Guide to Accepting Love on Google that all I saw were negative articles without one of the articles from being positive assertion of love. What a world we live in and I add the lyric from a song “What the world needs now is love, sweet love.” Songwriter(s)‎: ‎Hal David‎, ‎Burt Bacharach
(C) Copyright 2012-2017 Arline Miller with all rights and privileges reserved. Third party material sourced to original location/author. Photos are not property of Sipping Cups of Inspiration unless stated.

MOVING INTO A MOVING STATE OF MIND

MOVING INTO A MOVING STATE OF MIND is what is on my mind after several weeks of packing, cleaning, and sorting. As I usually do when undertaking a task of any kind is how can I apply this experience to my life. In contemplating what effects the action of moving are created by this activity and it is enlightening. I felt it was worthy of sharing with my readers.

Moving creates activity and physical movement by the necessity to move items which may have been stored for a long time. 

  • Closets, cabinets, and drawers are emptied and/or organized. During this task, many items can be eliminated, donated, or trashed. Items which have not been used in years are located. Sometimes this creates laughter or a sigh of a memorable occasion. The main rule of thumb: If you could do without it for many years, it makes sense to get rid of it unless you think it might be a good item for Antiques Roadshow.
  • Dusting is necessary and even though you feel you keep a tidy, clean home….this activity will prove a humbling episode. I always heard that dust means souls have passed through….I must have had an army come through those upper shelves. It pays to keep a good sense of humor upon discovery.
  • The thrill of finding that one item you felt lost is exhilarating and a treasure hunt ensues from this find. However, the thrill is diminished when nothing else that has ever been lost is not found. At the end of this frenzy, the physical exhaustion takes over.
  • Soul searching takes place frequently during the cleaning, sorting, distributing, repacking, and trashing. With the removal of items not used or items we should have never had in the beginning, and the sense of pride when you turn loose of possessiveness of old things.
  • The process begins to speed up as more things are discarded and it becomes easier to let go of those things we don’t need.

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This list brings me to the life lesson learned from this Moving into a moving state of mind. I found it difficult when I started to clean my soul to let go of familiar habits or vices, whichever way you choose to think. At first, I wanted to hold on to those items or people. I would try to attach more meaning and/or feelings to those items which never served a good purpose and I struggled with the decisions of release. Maybe I would need this or that later, but even with the struggle I began to discard items, habits, and even people that were not positive influences on me. What I found, and I saw this in the moving stage; the more I discarded the freer I felt and the cleaner my surroundings were. Yes, some dusting had to be completed in my life as well as our home. Things begin to shine as the dust is removed; you have more room for the pretty items when the trash is removed. In other words, when we move into a moving state of mind and move in the good and move out the bad; we feel refreshed, clean, and ready to take on the world in a positive frame of mind.

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(C) Copyright 2012-2017 Arline Miller with all rights and privileges reserved. Third party material is sourced and/or titled with authors stated. Photos are not property of Sipping Cups of Inspiration unless stated.

OUR LIVES HAVE GONE TO THE DOGS

 

Buster and Duchess

OUR LIVES HAVE GONE TO THE DOGS….and we like it! For several weeks we have been involved in a couple of time demanding events and I have noticed the changes in our life. Greg and I have discussed for several months about moving to his hometown and the area where most of our family is located, eight wonderful grandchildren included. This plan has been put into place and we have signed a contract for a home. Now we have polished, cleaned, de-cluttered, and readied our beautiful home to sell it and move on to the new adventure. I prepare you with our primary, or at least what I thought was, objective but stage left enter Duchess, our latest rescue dog and the excitement and focus has been detoured in a moment and has taken center stage.

Duchess hugging me

One afternoon I noticed someone posted that a small dog (rat terrier to be exact) was spotted on a four lane highway with insane traffic at that time of day and was scared and hanging behind a dumpster. It has been extremely hot so I sent my husband to rescue this little fur baby. I will never forget how she was shaking when he brought her in and how many fleas were on that sweet girl. She apparently had been exposed to the elements for an extended time as her nails were entirely too long and she was very skinny. We went through the checks and notices and no claims so we decided she must have been allotted to us through a higher power.

Duchess Miller

It wouldn’t be a complete narration if I didn’t give, as Paul Harvey would say, “Now for the rest of the story”. Buster, who is our rescued Papillon mix, and who we have worked with on his social skills. Buster who is absolutely a dog of his own kind.  He came to us as a three pound black bundle who favored a miniature bear cub when we had our rescued Yorkie, Bandit and that is an entirely different story for a future time.  Back to Duchess and Buster’s adventure. For some reason, Buster sensed the fear in Duchess when she came that night and he didn’t do his usual non stop barking when someone or something enters our home. He was curious but we kept them apart until she stopped shaking and began eating. Eat she did, until we had to stop her to prevent her body rejecting too much food too soon. For two days, she slept and ate but showed so much appreciation to have been saved. Then the fun began. She did not accept Buster’s rejection to playing, she kept on until he joined in and the chase/playing was on. It goes on every day for over an hour they spend in and out of the house (we have a doggie door for easy access for them) and even on our bed to show off their alligator mouths and it is not aggressive but playfulness.

Buster with bear

This would be a good story but maybe not a fantastic story if it were not for the fact we are showing our home and are trying to keep it immaculate for potential buyers. Last night, we were blessed with a rain and I haven’t witnessed Duchess going out in the rain. At least, until with shiny floors, freshly laundered comforters on bed, shampooed rugs, and then here she came, soaking wet and running wild through the home. I ran to get a big towel and the fresh rain had to have given her some kind of thrill because she thought I was playing with the towel. I saved the house’s shiny condition but when it was over, I lay on the bed thinking it was over. Not! Charged up, she found Buster and enticed him  to their nightly romp which I videoed the portion on the bed.

As I started this blog post, we are deeply involved with selling our home and feeling positive but we are deeply involved with all of the doggie love too. I think we may have been blessed with this distraction to minimize any stress that usually comes with selling; we have our fur babies playing.

Duchess Miller(C) Copyright 2012-2017 Arline Miller with all rights and privileges reserved. If third party material is used, the original location with links is present on blog for reference credit. Photos may or may not be property of Sipping Cups of Inspiration.