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Now Choose Life

Choose to Live Your Life in Abundance in the after--- after the spouse dies, after the marriage ends, after the kids leave. Join me on my journey of CHOOSING LIFE in my after. This day I call the heavens and the earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live- Deut 30:19

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October 30, 2019

Peak of the Week- 10-30-19

Happy Wednesday, the Peak of the Week!! I'm sitting at my desk looking out on a frigid day!! If you follow me on Instagram or Facebook, you might have seen my stories today. It's frigid here, and I had a choice of running outside or going to the gym and getting on a treadmill.

Because of a post I saw yesterday from Hungry Runner Girl, I decided to add coins to my mental strength bank and run outside in our freezing temperatures! It ended up being a pretty good run. I feel stronger mentally, physically, and spiritually!!! The whole idea is to run in all different conditions- especially the bad ones because you don't know what conditions will be the day of your race. Just like running- we don't know the conditions our lives will be in tomorrow, next week, or a year from now so we also need to do things to add coins to draw from out of our Mental Strength Bank for life in general!!

Feeling really good halfway through my run!!

I believe that our foundation of faith and what we do to grow that faith is the most important thing!! That's certainly what I'm trying to work on in my life!!

How about you, any tips for me on what you do to develop mental or emotional strength?

That's what I'm thinking about today, and here are some things that have piqued my interest this week. I hope you find them as fascinating as I did!!

What your response to typos says about you- As a former English teacher, this resonated with me. It also resonated with me because just this week, I sent out an email with some errors in it!! Uh Oh!! I learned a new word- "grammo"!! Are you a grammar snob? I certainly don't want to be!!

Woman continued to text her father's phone after his death- This is such a heartwarming story.

Best movies on Netflix- It's wintertime, the best time to sit around and watch movies!! Here is a good list.

10 Insider skincare tips from an Esthetician- I believe in taking care of my skin!! Although this article mentions one particular product line, she speaks of general types of items which I appreciate.

If you are looking for a great "clean" product line, I have been using a few products from Beautycounter. If you are interested, I can put you in touch with my consultant!!

I also highly recommend these products from The Ordinary. I have been using them for a while, and I love them. They are incredibly reasonable in price too!!

The Ordinary line of products are plainly packaged products that carry a big punch where skincare is concerned!! Most items cost under $15.00 so they are extremely reasonable! Click HERE to see the many products in their line.

What I'm reading- Searching For Sylvie Lee- this book had me at Chapter 1! It's clean with an amazing storyline. I'm about halfway finished, and I read it every chance I get.

What I'm listening to- Jesus Is King by Kanye West. I am not a Kanye West fan, but when my pastor recommends something, I pay attention. Not only did my pastor recommend his album, but my bible study lead teacher also did. It's interesting!!!

October 28, 2019

Wants VS Needs

I had a great revelation the other day while out on my run!! I did not want to be out running. I had done everything I could think of to keep myself from putting on my shoes and going out the door. And finally, I just told myself, "You really NEED to get out there and run."

So while I was out, I started thinking about the idea of our wants vs. our needs. Remember when our kids were little, and we talked about only buying them things that were needs? Wants were for special occasions.

So it's really the same thing as an adult. Of course, we should all live frugally and only buy what we really need. Saving the wants for special occasions. This concept goes deeper than that. We should always go with our needs in every situation!!

So many choices in our world today!

I need to take care of my body as I age. Therefore, I need to exercise and eat correctly. I may want to eat an entire pizza or a plate of cookies, but I need to consume those treats in moderation.

Every Tuesday afternoon this month, I've gone to a class to be a docent at a nearby museum. I guess it's my age and the fact that I stay home alone so much, but I've gotten a small bit of anxiety as the afternoon class approaches each Tuesday. I do so much by myself in this new life. I usually go to something and don't know a soul there. So there were a couple of times this month that I really wanted to stay home, but I knew that if I desire to be a docent, I need to go.

There are some Sundays when we would much rather stay at home than go to church. I may want to stay in my PJ's all day. However, I know that I need to be fed with the word of God, and so most of the time, when I feel that way, I get myself up and dressed and go.

The need is usually of eternal value and always more important 
 than the temporary desire of  a "want."

A synonym of "need" is essential. I love to think about that. We should always do what is essential for the life we are creating for ourselves.

A synonym of "want" is a desire, a fancy, a craving. Most of the time, what I fancy is short-lived.

It reminds me of the definition of self-discipline that I've heard many times. --  Self- discipline is:                         Doing what you don't want to do so that you can do what you do want to do.

I love that definition because I can relate to it so much in my life. Am I going to live a life based on my fancies, my cravings-- my wants, or am I going to live my life based on what is essential to an abundant life?

I pray that the majority of the time, I pick my needs!!

How about you? What is needed in your life today? Are you willing to do what it takes? It's not easy, but it is so worth it in the end. 

October 25, 2019

What I Wore- shopping my closet

My closet in New Mexico is quite a bit smaller than my closet in Texas was. Because of this, I have to switch out my clothes with the seasons. It has really been a good thing for me because it forces me to look at all of my clothes and purge what I don't wear. With the purging always comes a lot of guilt that I've bought way too many clothes and that I haven't worn some clothes enough or been a good steward of what I have bought.

While I was moving my fall/winter clothes into the closet, I decided to shop my closet and really look at those clothes that I haven't worn in a while. Enter this cute, black blouse. I bought this blouse a few years ago on clearance from The Loft. I almost put it in the box to take to Goodwill, but something stopped me. I decided this was going to be one piece that I would try again and see how I liked it. I  wore it to my bible study last week and felt so comfortable. I honestly don't know why I quit wearing it. 

I challenge you to shop for your closet!! I once went for 9 months without buying any new clothes. It was a way to challenge myself. I think I'm going to try it again. It certainly changes your outlook on what is hanging in the closet when you are committed to no buying anything new!!

In all honesty, I did recently buy these jeans from Old Navy during their 40% off online sale. I believe in keeping up with trends and this is my first pair of high waisted jeans. I also love that there is a bit of a flare leg. 

Jean can be found HERE

This blouse is perfect year-round! I love the pockets. I'll be wearing this a lot this winter!!

Have you shopped your closet lately? 
If not, go shopping and see what you find. Be sure to let me know!!

As always, please share my posts on your social media of choice!!!
October 23, 2019

Peak Of The Week - 10-23-19

We had company this past weekend. It was filled with good hikes, great food, and fun memories made!! I'm sharing some pictures from the weekend, along with things piquing my interest this week.

Me and Dr. T overlooking the Rio Grande River.

I am Why Do I Need Venmo years old- I laughed when I saw this. My daughter and her friends use Venmo all the time. I had a young woman at church ask me the other day if I use it? I don't want to use it!!! This is more than Venmo years old too. Let me know if there are any that you really relate to...

Switchback section of one of my favorite trails to hike. It ends in Bandelier National Park!

Southwest Chase Credit Card Promotion:
I don't think it's a good idea to get started using credit cards unless you are willing to discipline yourself to pay them off every month. However, sometimes it's smart to use a card for weekly or monthly purchases when you get points. I have gotten many free flights due to the points on my Southwest Airlines card. Here is a link that they sent me. If you sign up using my link, I'll get points added to my account.

Click HERE to go to the link.

From the New York Times- How Guilty Should You Feel About Flying?  This is a thought-provoking article on how much our travel contributes to over carbon dioxide emissions. I'd love to know your thoughts on some of the creative suggestions to get people to fly less.

You Can Heal Yourself Using the Chi Energy of Trees According to Taoist Masters- This article fascinated me because I truly believe that nature can heal us!! I know the New Mexico mountains that I now live in certainly helped "heal" my grief!! I read a book by Yolanda Hadid, Believe Me, about her battle with Lyme Disease. She talked about going outside and laying down on the grass to feel nature!! I loved that!! I feel better when I'm out in nature!! God's creation is meant to bring us pleasure. Nature is certainly a balm for what ails me!! Believe me, you'll never look at a tree the same way after reading this!!

How are you choosing life on this Peak of the Week? I made myself get out and run this morning. We are expecting SNOW tomorrow!! Here are some pictures from my run along with a video of my quiet moment!!

I love the fall colors.

I'm not ready for these beautiful colors to leave and winter to take up residence!! 

Isn't this peaceful!! I never run alone out on the numerous trails we have around. My mother made sure that I read books about Ted Bundy before I left for college. (She knows me well enough to know that all it would have taken is for me to see a good looking guy who was a law student, and I'd be accepting a ride in his VW Bug!!!) All that to say that I'm a conscientious person. I always run on the paved trail in town where I usually see many people running, biking, and driving. However, today was different. It was so quiet and desolate throughout my whole run. I was able to stop and take in this beautiful scene without any cars driving by. I loved it!! 

October 21, 2019

Best Fall Items At Trader Joes!!

Run, don't walk to Trader Joe's and buy all of these items before they are gone!!

I was blown away recently when I tried these fall foods from Trader Joe's. Why am I surprised that TJ's has done it again with the taste and quality of items?

Every single one of these products is delicious!!
My son, daughter-in-law, daughter, and daughter's boyfriend were here last weekend!! They all came here to celebrate my son's 30th birthday. He isn't much of a cake eater so I got all these mixes from TJ's and had them ready to eat when everyone got here.

It was great to have a variety. My son even said it was really good for a bunch of  "pumpkin spice" stuff!!  

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First, the Butternut Squash Mac & Cheese- I didn't get a picture of the finished product, but you can read about it here. The box shows that there are two servings in this package, but there are definitely more than two servings! Dr. T really liked this too. There is a definite taste of squash, but it isn't overpowering and adds so much to the savory flavor.

The Pumpkin Chocolate Chunk Oatmeal Cookie Mix is heavenly. I would really watch the time on the cooking of this. I didn't cook them for near as long as it called for. These are crisp cookies, and they were oh so good!!

The Maple Pecan Mix is unbelievable!! The size of the pecans is amazing!! I've never gotten a mix with the size and freshness of these pecans!! I didn't make the cookies. I made a loaf!

The Pumpkin Bread & Muffin Mix was moist and delicious! The pumpkin taste was mild and wonderful!!

Sorry, I couldn't get a photo before we demolished all this yummy food.

 I loved having this great variety for everyone to grab and try. All the kids really seemed to like it too!!

Don't miss out!! These are great products!! If you have tried other products, let me know!!

As always, if you like what you see here, please share on your Facebook, Instagram, or Pinterest accounts!!

October 19, 2019

What I Wore- a warm fall day!

Sharing what I recently wore on a warm fall day.

Most fall days are a Tale of Two Forecasts!! It's hard to know what to wear because the mornings are usually quite colder than in the afternoon! I had a dark vest on with this in the morning, but by afternoon there was glorious sunshine and much warmer weather!!

I love this top from Zara. It is a perfect color for early fall.
 Zara has many other tops in this color too. It is a perfect transitional color heading into colder weather!! It isn't the pink of summer, but it isn't the orange of fall! I love the color!!

I bought these shoes in 3 colors many years ago from Lands End. Here is a similar pair. These are
some of the most comfortable shoes I've ever worn!!


I'm loving my fall mantle!! 
How are you transitioning into fall?
October 04, 2019

What I Wore- Fringe

I'm loving the cooler weather and the good vibrations it brings to my life!! Why does it always feel good when you start wearing clothes for a new season. I guess it's that "new beginning" feeling no matter where you get it!!

I bought this fringe jacket from Zara when I was back in Texas about a month ago. I love it!!!

You are also getting a sneak peek at our new bookshelves. They weren't completely finished in these pictures!! 

A similar jacket can be found HERE.

Getting these books out of boxes after several years of storage has been like being reunited with old friends!! I've loved looking through some of my favorites.

Remember Simple Abundance? Oprah made it popular years ago. I've had it all these years and return to it so often!! It can be ordered HERE

 I love that this jacket is lightweight and covers what I prefer to have covered!!

How about you...Do you have any books that you return to over and over? I have many!!

This vest is very similar to my jacket and can be purchased in black. It can be found HERE.

October 02, 2019

Peak Of The Week- 10-2-19

I let a friend talk me into signing up for a race in the Big Bend area of Texas for next January. She wanted me to run the 20K with her, but I told her I just can't train for that many miles in the winter here!! Lucky for me, she's such a great friend, she agreed to do the 10K. I can handle that!

The great thing about it besides getting to spend a weekend with her and her husband in this area of Texas (I've never been) is that it will force me to get out and run!! I have a goal again, and it feels really good. So-- that is the only thing that got me out the door this morning!! I'm so glad it did!! It was a beautiful, breezy morning here in the mountains of New Mexico. Is it OK that I often refer to them as "my mountains"? Many of my friends here have heard how these mountains helped me heal from tragedy!! I feel like they are my mountains- God placed them here just for me!!!

Happy Wednesday-- The Peak of the Week!! Here are some things piquing my interest this week- along with some recent pictures!!

This is a Chamisa plant. It is blooming all over northern New Mexico right now. It's lovely!!!

Lee Radziwill's Collection At Christie's- I love to see how others live!! I love to go on home tours. I love to see online homes decorated for the seasons. I love to read biographies and memoirs. This article showing some of what will be auctioned from Lee Radziwill's estate caught my eye. Radziwill was the sister of Jackie O. I can't get enough!!!

I'll keep you updated on these leave along my running route!! It's amazing how much the color changes overnight!!

Stages of Dementia- I have shared Dr. Chua before. I love following him on Facebook. This article is a simple look at the stages of dementia.

Company Creates First Alternative For Human Remains- This is happening right in my own backyard. Making stones from a person's cremated ashes. It is an interesting concept. The colors that different people's stones become. How many stones can be created from a person--- All is so fascinating to me. What do you think of this?

I took Scout out for a walk after my run, and we ran into our neighbor. This is her do, Henry. He is so cute. The breed is the same dog from the Because Of Winn Dixie movie. I recently found out they are moving. :( Yet another friend leaving me!!!

What I'm reading:

The Screwtape Letters- I do a long-distance study with a friend that is ongoing! We decided to study C.S. Lewis's The Screwtape Letters. Sad that I've never read it before. I think it will be enlightening!! I'll let you know!

The Perfect Couple- This is my escape read, read when I'm up at 2am, don't have to think book!! It's pretty good too!!

What I'm listening to:

The Next Right Thing- Our daily decisions make up our lives! This is a short and sweet podcast that shares ideas on decisions and life!! Very positive- I'll take it!!

What room I'm concentrating on cleaning or organizing:

This is a tough one!! My house is such a mess right now. I'm still working in the office. I'm loving these new bookshelves!! I'll write a post about them soon. Because I had so many boxes stored everywhere with the books and things to fill the shelves- I have a mess all over!! Shifting boxes out of a guest bedroom closet means also redoing some things in that closet. It's a snowball (or avalanche) of  STUFF!!!

But I did clean my bathrooms this week!! I'm behind on my Clean Mama schedule which I like to follow!!!

It's sweater weather for Scout!!

How are you choosing life lately? I'd love to hear!!!