Thursday, July 28, 2011

Pride and Accomplishment

My son Ryan is very proud of himself.  He has a very good reason to be.  Through hard work and perseverance he has achieved quite the accomplishment!  Ryan has developed enough muscle to operate his bow and arrow UNASSISTED. This is no small feat!  








It is still difficult for him, but as he is VERY determined, and he KEEPS practicing, it won't be long until it becomes much easier.  He is already a terrific shot, and now that his practice time is not limited by requiring help to pull back the bow I'm sure he will become even better.  


For me, the best part about this is the sense of pride he feels in accomplishing something so difficult.  This feeling of accomplishment can not be handed out.  It needs to be earned.  I'm so glad he had to work so hard for this, and that he has finally experienced this success.  As the saying goes...


If at first you don't succeed, try, try again.


Congratulations Ryan!


I hope you have a wonderfully whimsical day!
Alice.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Reading: Her Fearful Symmetry

I recently read Her Fearful Symmetry by Audrey Niffenegger.   I thought this was going to be a great book.  It captured me right from the start.  The setting was interesting, London's Highgate Cemetery is the backdrop of the story.  The characters are interesting, twin sisters that no longer speak to each other, one of them with twin daughters.  The book was fun and easy to read with an air of mystery waiting be be discovered.   Then the main character died and became a ghost.  Oh...  


Apparently I didn't read the back cover very well because I didn't realize I was reading a ghost story.  I guess I was just in the wrong state of mind for this book and it didn't win me over.  


Audrey Niffenegger also wrote The Time Traveller's Wife.  I watched the movie, I didn't read the book, but since it was so fascinating I had high hopes for this book.  If you are looking for a well-written unusual story this is a good option. 


If you would like to decide for yourself about this book it is available for sale through Amazon at the link below.



Happy reading and have a whimsically wonderful day!
Alice.


Sunday, July 24, 2011

Good Food Box

Just when I think that changes won't happen something comes along to bring a ray of hope. I believe that most people will admit that unhealthy eating is a real problem in society these days. One of the common complaints/excuses I hear about why people can't or don't eat healthier is the expense of fresh food. That's why I was so excited to hear about the Good Food Box in my community. For $20 you preorder a box of vegetables. You don't choose what is in the box, you simply get what they give you. (a list of potential items is provided). The purpose is to provide fresh food for less.


This month was our first month participating and I was very happy with the program. They schedule one day for picking up your box. If you don't pick up your food during the time allotted it will be donated to the local food bank.  I went to pick up my box and found out that it was actually a reusable shopping bag. Hooray for first impressions! The bag was stuffed full of fresh fruits and vegetables. Not all items that were on the suggested list were in the bag, but for every item not included something else was.  For $20 it was a great deal.


Here is a photo of all of our food!




This program is open to everyone in the community so I hope it is a huge success and that it will receive the support it needs to continue!


Have a whimsically wonderful day!
Alice.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution

I was so excited to see the return of Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution for a second season.  I enjoyed the first season so much!  Jamie Oliver is working to bring healthy eating to the mainstream.  He is trying to make changes in schools and at home.  He wants people to eat real food, food made from ingredients that you can pronounce.  He has recognized the societal problem with obesity and diabetes.


Jamie Oliver is trying to make a difference.  Most people talk about making a change but he is actually out there trying to DO something!


If you haven't been watching Season 2 of the Food Revolution don't miss out!  In Canada you can find episodes online at watch.ctv.ca 

Be sure to check out JamieOliver.com for more information and to get involved!

Have a wonderfully whimsical day!
Alice.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Sugar: The Bitter Truth

I recently came across this video in my quest for healthy information.  Sugar: The Bitter Truth by Robert H. Lustig, MD, UCSF Professor of Pediatrics in the Division of Endocrinology.

The video is pretty long, and there are parts that are not very exciting, unless you love sitting through bio-feedback chemistry!  The message shared is valuable.  That is why I am posting it here.  Take from it what you will.


Have a wonderfully whimsical day!
Alice. 

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Exciting News!

I am excited to share some news!  I will be writing a guest post for another blog this summer!  One of my favourite blogs, Stuff Jewish Girls Like, will be featuring guest posts while she is away on holidays.  Jewish Girl put out the call for guest posts with the topic "How I Spent My Summer Vacation".  I submitted my idea and she has accepted my offer!  I will let you know when the post is up (sometime in August), and I will provide a link to it.  Sorry, no spoilers!


You may remember my post about the 30 Day Shred Challenge.  The challenge was made by Jewish Girl, and she had a wonderful series of posts about it.  If you are not familiar with Stuff Jewish Girls Like blog I will give you a quick introduction with some of my favourite posts!


The Top Ten Most Ridiculous Things I Own


The (Jewish) Nose Goes


Eat What You Want


Meditations on the Last Five Pounds


Secretly (?) a Mess


and of course the 30 Day Shred Challenge:


Background on the Shred


Level One Discussion Forum


Level Two Discussion Forum


Level Three Discussion Forum


Conclusion of the Challenge


Now that you are caught up with the recommended reading, I'll bet you've bookmarked her blog!


Have a whimsically wonderful day!
Alice.









Monday, July 18, 2011

Reading: Maine

I just read Maine by J. Courtney Sullivan.  I ordered this book from the library on the advice of Jen Lancaster, one of my favourite authors.  (Here is the link to her recommendation.)  


Maine tells the story of three-generations of women.  The family lives at the beach every summer and they have developed complicated and complex relationships.  Secrets will be revealed, and new ones will be formed.  The family dynamic includes frustration, anger and guilt, and yet there is also love.  


The author writes beautifully and it kept my pages turning long after lights out.  After reading this book I long for a summer home on the ocean.   I definitely agree with Jen Lancaster that this is a great summer read!


If you would like to purchase your own copy there is an Amazon link below.


Happy reading and have a whimsically wonderful day!
Alice.



Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Living Life: Right Now!

I was recently inspired by a blog I read about living your life in the present.  Generation Cedar wrote: Are You Wasting or Living Life.



"Do you ever feel like you’re just busy waiting for the next phase, the next season, the next step?
Once we arrive *here*”…life will be easier, slower, better.
We are here. Now."  (quoted from Generation Cedar)


The author is talking about truly living in the present.  This has been the conviction I have been living by my whole life.  I make time to do the things that are important to me.  I don't put things off until I'm thinner, richer or have more time.  I try to encourage others to live in the present also.


A friend of mine was always wearing unflattering, too-tight clothing.  She only had one pair of pants.  (How this is even possible could be a whole separate blog topic!)  This was not some kind of moral or economical choice.  She wouldn't shop for clothes because she was unhappy with the weight she had gained the previous few years.  She said she would shop for new clothes when she was smaller.  I asked her if she was living her life right now.  I asked if she needs clothing to wear right now.  I also asked her if she was valuable enough to have clothing that fits her right now.  My friend was so caught up in the weight issue that she was forgetting that she is living her life Right Now!


I've heard the same story told in many variations.  People wait to do the things they love until retirement.  What if retirement doesn't come?  What if when retirement comes you don't have the good health to do the things you have only wished about?


Are you living the life you want to live?  If not, why not?  Can you change something to make your dreams part of your everyday reality?  I am not recommending spending money that you don't have! There are many resources available to help you trim your finances, or help you redirect your money into the activities that you love.


I'd like to share a few ways that I live my life, enjoying the present. Some of these are the big things, some are simple, everyday things that make me smile.  All of them help me to live a happier life!


I eat soup for breakfast almost every day because I love it!


I have gone bungee jumping and skydiving, just because I wanted to.


We started homeschooling our two boys.


I travelled to India... as spontaneously as that could be arranged!


We sold our house, moved into a travel trailer for 17-1/2 months while we built our new home.


We took an impromptu trip to Europe after the tragic death of a pet.


My husband bought, built, and flies his own airplane which he LOVES to do.


I have a scrapbook workshop so I can share my passion and excitement with others.


I started singing with the choir because it scared me to death and I'd always wanted to do it.


We travel with our children.


I will sit in bed for a whole day to read a good book once in awhile.





I wear dresses as much as possible.  Especially twirly ones.


I have many multi-coloured purses, but no black purses... Life is Too Short for a Black Purse!


My number one way to choose home decor is: How much do I love it?


I get excited about new interests and I don't feel too bad if they are only short-lived.  I don't have to like something forever!  (It's not a tattoo!)


I haul my kids to sports events and stay to watch them even if I don't have to... because it brings me joy.




I swim because I love to... not for exercise.


I try to spend time with friends as often as I can.  I will never be unhappy about laugh lines I earn laughing with my friends.


I am constantly trying to do better, be better and live better.  I will live in THIS moment and plan for the next!


I hope this blog will inspire you to go and and do something you love... TODAY!


Have a whimsically wonderful day!
Alice.





New Dining Room Art

Last week my boys and I spent the week in the city.  Ryan did a competitive swim camp, Joe went to a science camp.  I went shopping!  After I dropped the boys off in the morning I was free until pick-up time in the afternoon.  


I found some art for my dining room.  This is big news as my walls have been blank for over 2 years!  This canvas came from Chintz and Company.


Here I am with my new art!

See the dimensional texture!


I love how the textural butterfly fits so well with the textural tree in my sitting room.  Now I have a little bit of nature to enjoy year-round!  

I am so happy that my new art is hanging on the wall!

Have a wonderfully whimsical day!
Alice.