Monday, August 5, 2019

Ten Bedtime Affirmations

Here are some bedtime affirmations to help you wind down for the night. You could write them slowly in a journal, focusing on each word, or you can recite them in your mind as you lay in bed and take a deep breath after each sentence.
  1. I am calm and peaceful. 
  2. I have done my best today. 
  3. My mind can rest now. 
  4. I am grateful for today's opportunities. 
  5. The positive things I did today will lead to an even better tomorrow. 
  6. Any mistakes I made today, I can figure out how to fix in the morning.
  7. My body is relaxed.
  8. I am proud of my efforts. 
  9. The morning will bring new possibilities. 
  10. My bed is a sanctuary for a great night's sleep.

“Beauty is the harvest of presence.” - David White, Consolations: The Solace, Nourishment and Underlying Meaning of Everyday Words

Saturday, August 3, 2019

Summer Rainstorm in Texas

Flashes of light that mimic electrical transformers exploding.
The rumble that follows shakes the house.
Rain drops, large as the lone star, flood the brown yard 
but from the inside looking out 
I can pretend it's cool instead of 90% humidity.

The sudden storm keeps my neighbors quiet;
the air is clear of weekend yard work sounds.
A summer rainstorm in Texas is the reprieve longed for
from our annual inferno sentence. 

I thank God for the rainstorm
that places my Saturday plans on hold.
I smile to myself to see
the Earth happy from the gift it just received. 

Huge cracks in the dirt begin to fill in
and plants perk up.
Birds chirp during the moments
between the sectioned storm. 

Rest. Recovery. 

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

10 Hygge Ideas for Texas Summers

 hyg·ge /ˈh(y)o͞oɡə,ˈho͝oɡə/: quality of coziness and comfortable conviviality that engenders a feeling of contentment or well-being (regarded as a defining characteristic of Danish culture).

Often bloggers talk about hygge for winter months and ways to embrace the season rather than fight it. The posts are usually about items or activities that help someone focus on the specialness of the season. I happen to LOVE winter and have found it's actually summertime that creates the biggest negative change in my attitude and health. A few bloggers have posted summer hygge ideas too like star-gazing, al fresco dining, or going to a drive-in movie however, I struggle with those because I live in Texas and most of them would put me outside in 100+ weather during the hottest part of our day. That is NOT hygge for me.

Taken during my recent Austin trip - from inside a window because it was too hot and humid!
So I brainstormed with my friend Cristina and we came up with 1o hygee ideas for those hot Texas summers that would be practical. Enjoy! 

1. Create a summer playlist. Fill it with songs from the Beach Boys, Jimmy Buffet or any other artist that has songs that make you think of the beach, summer breezes, and relaxing. 

2. Make homemade ice cream, snow cones, or popsicles (lots of recipes for boozy ones online too). Maybe search for a recipe that's decadent. Be in the moment during the process of making them and eating them.

3. Pamper yourself with a cooling facial mask on extra hot days. The "Best of Tips" website had easy recipes with a yogurt base that I think are worth trying! I like to use Noxzema cold cream more in the summer because it's refreshing.

4. Have a breakfast picnic. Mornings are the coolest part of the day so have a traditional picnic but start early. Just picture a blanket spread out with muffins, OJ/thermos coffee, and fruit with your family and friends around you. Maybe there will be time for a quick frisbee game or kite flying. (still...wear sunblock!)

5. Go to an arboretum and explore. Maybe bring a book along you've been meaning to read. You could also visit a local library to read magazines.

6. Visit a local antique shop, especially one with a tea room. You could have a day of shopping inside where it's cool and have an elegant, light lunch. If any vendors are selling homemade candles, pick up one for your home in a light summer scent.

7. Camp, but inside! Set up a tent or make a pillow fort in your living room for the night. Liz over at "Love + Marriage and a Baby Carriage" pulled together a great list of ideas on her website with her post titled, "16 Indoor Camping Ideas For People Who Hate Nature." LOL

8. Buy a container plant that attracts butterflies and set it outside of a window. Consider counting how many butterflies and bees visit. You could create a hygge like corner by that window with a relaxing chair there to do some reading and butterfly watching.

9. Notice when you hear cicadas. These loud creatures are traditionally known to be announcing the "dog days of summer." Yes, their sound can be annoying but instead reflect on the purpose they serve. It's also just a good mindfulness moment reminder.

10. Finally, one of my favorite ideas. Take a milk bath in flowers or fruit. Here's a link to different types of flowers and their benefits: Flower bathsHere is an idea for a citrus bath too. 

Bonus: From my childhood, running through a sprinkler was totally hygge. Maybe I should do this as an adult? The photo alone to compare side my side would be priceless. Ha!