Archive for August, 2015

2015, August 25

Play like you’re a little girl or a boxer

The assignment for last week in the year of loving ourselves fearlessly was to Play.

My friend Stephany and I were just talking about this the week before, when we met up in London. We talked about sooo many things, and then about how not much has changed since we were kids. We got along just as well, it was like she never moved away to New Zealand.
She told me how tough it was on her to move away. We used to go out in the streets around our houses with the kids around the neighborhood and play. Hopscotch, French hopscotch in snail layout, jump rope, tag, hide and seek, and so on. She said kids in New Zealand didn’t do that much where she lived (they preferred staying inside), and it was a big adjustment for her.
However, now at 26+ years of age, we both feel that we don’t play enough anymore. We came to the conclusion that we’re doing far more stuff that we don’t necessarily want, than the stuff we’re passionate about. I was so happy to be there with her, and implicitly to take her out of the house and her usual routine so that she also relaxed and could unwind after work and everything else she has on her plate.

I’ve recently bought a jump rope to add to my evening exercise routine.
The conversation with my boyfriend went something like this:
– I want to jump rope, too. Mine is in the attic somewhere. Do you happen to have one at your dad’s?
– That’s a good idea. No, I don’t have a jump rope.
– Why? Didn’t you have one growing up?
– No. Because I wasn’t a little girl or a boxer…

Anyway one of the first thoughts I had after jumping rope the first evening, right after wondering “Oh my god, how did I last doing this for hours on end when I was a child?” while trying to catch my breath, was that it’s great and I’ve forgotten how much fun I used to have!

On the other hand, I was so busy and felt so scattered that I nearly said I didn’t play last week. But in truth, I played Ice Age Village on my tablet, read on the train and goofed off with my boyfriend on the train/on the road, we drove into the next town over one night before going home just for fun because we love the new car, and I played with Pixel every day.
I wonder why the tendency to dismiss small things like these exists in us instead of focusing on them, especially when we’re having a hectic week?

For week 34, the assignment is to Photograph the stuff you love. Here’s what j said about this week’s assignment in the 52-52 guide:
“There is something about a camera, or rather there is something about looking at the world through a camera’s lens. You notice things you didn’t notice before. You appreciate the beauty of things you may never have seen as beautiful before. What you choose to capture has innate importance; it says something about you and the world you live in.
This week, take pictures of the stuff (places, people, food, activities) you love. Put them in an album. Share them with someone who loves you.”

I look forward to it! I am still posting beautiful London pics on Instagram, but will surely photograph things in my immediate surroundings every day. I’ll share them here in a collage, next week.

How was your week? Did you play? Do you usually incorporate that into your day because you have kids and play with them? If not, did you visit nieces, nephews or grandchildren? Or did you play just for play’s sake without wanting anyone else around to prompt it?

PS: If you’re interested in joining us, you don’t have to have the e-guide to play, but if you’d like it, you can buy it in the shop.

2015, August 18

My “Songs to be belted” playlist

For last week in the year of loving ourselves fearlessly, the assignment was to Make a “songs to be belted” playlist.
j said that for her, collecting songs for such a playlist was fun because not every song she likes is a song she loves to belt, and I completely understand that. Some songs are just for yourself, to belt any and every single time you hear them.

Below is my “Songs to be belted” playlist, or at least the playlist I thought of this week. It could easily change depending on my mood.

  • Uptown girl; Bop bop baby; Us against the world; The reason, by Westlife
  • All out of love, cover by Delta Goodrem and Westlife
  • Just Give Me A Reason, cover by Luke Conard and Helena&Maria
  • Back to December, cover by Luke Conard and Ingrid Nilsen
  • Spirit in the sky, by Norman Greenbaum
  • Anyone of us, by Gareth Gates
  • Right here; Goodnight Moon; Louder than words, by HeyHiHello
  • B-e-a-utiful, by Megan Nicole
  • Love me like you do, by Ellie Goulding
  • Friend of mine, by Treble Charger
  • What makes you beautiful, One Direction
  • Never let it end, by Dancs Annamari
  • Woke up this way; Break free from silence, by Antal Timi
  • On Road 67, by Republic

The assignment for week 33 is to Play. Here’s what j said about it in the 52-52 guide:
“Play /plā/ Verb:

To engage in activity for enjoyment and recreation rather than a serious or practical purpose.
Recently I was talking to a friend and she said she’s forgotten how to play. She said she’s noticed that when she plays with her children, she feels awkward, overly aware of herself.
I don’t think she’s an anomaly, though I wish she was. I think a lot of us forget how to play over time. We get older. We run less (and almost never for the sake of running). We don’t twirl at the drop of a hat, spinning about like tops until we’re too dizzy to stand. Our time gets filled with the stuff that pays our bills, and we forget how interesting ants are, how exhilarating it is to skip a stone across a pond, how awesome the view is from the branch of a tree.
In my opinion, there needs to be more colored chalk in our lives, more games of tag, more Crazy Eights, more cupcake eating – no hands.
This week, take every opportunity to play.”

I’ve recently bought a jump rope to add to my evening exercise routine. And one of the first thoughts I had, after wondering “Oh my god, how did I last doing this for hour on end when I was a child?” while trying to catch my breath, was that it’s great and I’ve forgotten how much fun I used to have! Let’s see how this week goes when I’ll deliberately incorporate play into my daily routine.

How was your week? Did you make a songs to be belted playlist? Do you usually sing along when a song you love comes up on the radio? Or are you not a singer, no matter what?

PS: If you’re interested in joining us, you don’t have to have the e-guide to play, but if you’d like it, you can buy it in the shop.

2015, August 10

Partake in salad alchemy

For last week, the assignment in the year of loving ourselves fearlessly was to Partake in salad alchemy. I’ll copy below what j says in the 52-52 Guide, so you’ll understand exactly what I’m talking about.
“One year on my birthday, my friend Andrea sent me the coolest little e-book. It’s called Salad Alchemy. It’s written by Meg Worden of Feed Me, Darling, and it’s so special and different that I’ll steal the words from her site to describe it:
Salad Alchemy is 7 lovely, life shifting salads, with ingredients that hold in them legend, story, nutrients and energy to transform your body and belief system about food.
This is not your ordinary cookbook or recipe book. This is seven story-centric salad recipes that serve to guide you into a deeper understanding of how pleasurable the preparation and consumption of food can be. It can be an ecstatic experience, even if you’re eating salad. Salad! Who knew?
I loved it. The seven salads are named Creativity, Power, Genius, Transformation, Stability, Beauty and Love. Meg writes about each one beautifully, linking food, myth, science and soul. I loved making the salads, reading Meg’s words, thinking about them as I tasted. It’s not a book so much as an experience.
This week, I’d love you try Meg’s salads. You can download the book here. It’s only $8.95, but if you can’t afford that, this week, live as though you believe the adage, “you are what you eat.” Be good to your body. Eat fresh, raw, and close to the earth. Eliminate preservatives and anything with unpronounceable ingredients. Enjoy your meals from prep all the way through clean-up. Your body is an astonishing biological miracle. Slow down. Appreciate it. Feed it soulfully.”

I couldn’t buy the book right now, but followed j’s advice and ate as healthy as I could, and played with having salads nearly every day.
On Monday I made grilled squash. On Tuesday I had a salad with hard boiled eggs in it. On Wednesday I took a salad to work for lunch and added the left-over squash into it. On Thursday I made Eggplant Spread. On Friday I added a can of tuna to my salad. On Saturday I sautéed mushrooms to go with lunch. And on Sunday, I had a yummy salad from Pret, in Kingston.
I also did my best to have fruit nearly every day, like bananas for breakfast, apples after lunch and melons as a treat, and I had yogurt and muesli, too.
And to tell the truth, I look forward to eating in London this week. I ate healthy last time I was here as well, so it’ll be nice not having the temptation of chocolate, chips and other such things around me (we have quite the extensive stash of treats in one of our kitchen cabinets at home!) ;)

In case you’re looking for new salad ideas, here are a few salad recipes I posted on my blog before. I still love making them on a regular basis!

For week 32, the assignment is to Make a “songs to be belted” playlist.
j said that for her, collecting songs for such a playlist was fun because not every song she likes is a song she loves to belt, and I completely understand that. I will be making a playlist for myself, and share the titles with you here, next week.

How was your week? Did you partake in salad alchemy? Or at least ate healthy things too, every day? Or a couple of days maybe?

PS: If you’re interested in joining us, you don’t have to have the e-guide to play, but if you’d like it, you can buy it in the shop.

2015, August 3

Trying something new, every day

In the year of loving ourselves fearlessly, last week the assignment was to Try Something New Every Day. Here’s something I just loved from what j said about it in the 52-52 guide: “these days absolute presence is hard to come by. With all that we have vying for our attention, it’s a wonder we’re able to focus at all, and when it happens, when you feel yourself caught up completely in exactly what’s happening RIGHT NOW, it’s ordinary magic at its extraordinary best.
This week, try something new every day. Drive a new route to work. Eat something pickled. Visit a new restaurant. Go to a movie alone. Paint a canvas. Send a love letter written in crayon. Revel in your now.”

The new things I’ve tried this week, are as follows:

  1. Had oven fried chicken with corn on the side for dinner, that my boyfriend cooked. I loved it!
  2. Started using the Expense Manager app, for Android.
  3. Had lunch alone.
  4. Started writing a travel essentials article – will keep you posted when it goes up on Milliver’s Travels.
  5. Drank/will continue drinking cappuccinos in the mornings, until the new coffee maker arrives. I chose all different flavors, like Vanilla, Caramel, Mocha and Milka Chocolate.
  6. Decided to stay for an extra three days in London on my upcoming work trip.
  7. Enjoyed a cup of tea on the balcony, listening to crickets and marveling in the full Moon.

For week 31, the assignment is to Partake in salad alchemy. I’ll copy below what j says in the 52-52 Guide, so you’ll understand exactly what I’m talking about.
“One year on my birthday, my friend Andrea sent me the coolest little e-book. It’s called Salad Alchemy. It’s written by Meg Worden of Feed Me, Darling, and it’s so special and different that I’ll steal the words from her site to describe it:
Salad Alchemy is 7 lovely, life shifting salads, with ingredients that hold in them legend, story, nutrients and energy to transform your body and belief system about food.
This is not your ordinary cookbook or recipe book. This is seven story-centric salad recipes that serve to guide you into a deeper understanding of how pleasurable the preparation and consumption of food can be. It can be an ecstatic experience, even if you’re eating salad. Salad! Who knew?
I loved it. The seven salads are named Creativity, Power, Genius, Transformation, Stability, Beauty and Love. Meg writes about each one beautifully, linking food, myth, science and soul. I loved making the salads, reading Meg’s words, thinking about them as I tasted. It’s not a book so much as an experience.
This week, I’d love you try Meg’s salads. You can download the book here. It’s only $8.95, but if you can’t afford that, this week, live as though you believe the adage, “you are what you eat.” Be good to your body. Eat fresh, raw, and close to the earth. Eliminate preservatives and anything with unpronounceable ingredients. Enjoy your meals from prep all the way through clean-up. Your body is an astonishing biological miracle. Slow down. Appreciate it. Feed it soulfully.”

I won’t buy the book right now, but I will follow j’s advice and eat as healthy as I can, and play with having salads every evening for dinner.

How was your week? Did you try something new every day? Or a couple of days maybe?

PS: If you’re interested in joining us, you don’t have to have the e-guide to play, but if you’d like it, you can buy it in the shop.

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