Wednesday, January 15, 2020

A Side Hop Down Memory Lane

I know I said I would bring you part II of my trip to England, but this memory from 5 years ago popped up and it made me laugh. It made David laugh too. There have been lots of stressful things going on. Lots of suffering, sadness and loss. Frankly, I truly need a brief break from it all and I guess that's why this popped up. 

Hannah has aged so much over the last 5 years. She's now 11, which for a bunny is really old. She's about 85 in human years. Of course, my beloved Harrington will forever be in my heart. Such a character he was. Harrington and Hannah were my muses for storytelling, which explains why, when I lost him in June of 2015 and we moved to Wilmington, my storytelling and blogging started to decline. I'm glad it's coming back. :)

I hope you enjoy this hop and chuckle down memory lane back to January of 2015. I'll be back next week with more from England. :)

Light, love and hugs,
Michelle

Bun errr...um...Bunny Fitness



We know what you did. You were naughty for two entire months weren't you? You ate lots of cakes and 
candies and pies. You ate too much of everything didn't you?


It was fun though wasn't it?  hee,hee,hee ;)


Well now it's time to get back in shape and get healthy. Today we want to share a few simple things 
 to help you stay fit and trim. Feel free to practice these at home. 

Please note, we are not responsible and cannot be held liable for injuries, mishaps or other things 
you might do to yourself. You're on your own. 



That being said, let's start with some simple stretches shall we?


First, lift your leg, point your toe and stick it in your ear. Hold for a count of five. Please note, you may
 encounter ear wax.

Remove your toe from your ear and place it on your chin. Hold for a count of five. This is also an excellent
time to see if you removed ear wax from your ear. If so, you can just lick it off.


What do you mean "eewwwww?"  It's just ear wax. We all have it. I'm keeping it real people, 
keeping it real.



Moving along. Now place your front feet on the hay box with your back feet slightly apart on another box. 
Push off the hay box with your front feet three times and then hop up on the hay box, or if you don't feel
safe, simply hop back down to the floor.

This next exercise is best with a buddy. Using your nose, shove the ball to your buddy. At this point,
you may take a bite out of the ball before shoving it to your buddy. Now place the ball in the basket. 
You may take a bite of the basket as well.

Ok, let's move on to some ear Tai Chi. Stand up and point your left ear to the ceiling while your
 right ear points to the floor.

Now gently lay down and at the same time spread your ears apart in opposite directions.

Turn your head to the left while raising your left ear up and lowering your right ear. Repeat this 
routine three times being mindful of your breath.

This exercise is excellent to stretch your neck, head and get a side rub at the same time. You get the picture.

Next, lay on the floor and cross your left legs under your right legs. Let your eyes roll to the back of 
your head and play dead for a few minutes.


Speaking of playing dead, meditation is good for your busy mind. Meditate at least 15 minutes a day.

Yesssss....meditaaaaaate.

It's also very important to follow a healthy diet. You need to eat lots of greens as you need the fiber.


You may be tempted to eat processed cardboard carbohydrates, but you must resist.

You have come too far to fall off the basket now.


You can do it!

Now that you have had a good workout, it's time to cool down. Lay on your belly with your legs out to
 the back.

 Point your toes and stretch them as far as you can.

At this point we also like a nice rub down.

Take a well deserved break, but remember to drink plenty of water!


                                  I'm exhausted. Me too.

We wish you all the best for a healthy new year.

Your friends,
Harrington and Hannah

Wednesday, January 8, 2020

Best Friends - Part 1 of Across the Pond

Best friends are the fairytale of life. They've been there since Once Upon a Time



and will be there till Happily Ever After.



October 4th, my best friend of forty years, Beth Gill and I set off on an adventure across the pond to England. Neither of us has ever been out of the country. Our husbands don't travel well and they weren't really interested in going. So having "girlfriend time" without pouting husbands on this incredible trip, was yet another gift. The first photo was from our first trip together when we were 14. We went to visit my grandparents in New York. I still remember how exciting it was to fly then.

Flying is a different world now at 51. Our adventure started at the Charlotte airport here in NC. We flew at night to help with jet lag thinking we would be sleeping and awake at times that were in our normal rhythms. We checked our bags and proceeded through all the security checkpoints. After I got through the scanner, which I had to go through twice because it malfunctioned, I moved on to pick up my carry on bag and shoes. A TSA agent had his hand on my polka dot bag and said, "Is this your bag." I replied, "yes." He said, "Do you have anything sharp or dangerous in your bag?" I said, "No." He said again, "Do you have anything sharp or dangerous in your bag?" I thought for a second and then said in a really slow, puzzled voice, cooolored pennnncils?


You see, I was bringing Jules, my dearest, artist, bestie friend across the pond a HUGE tin of colored pencils. She can't buy these in England and I got a fabulous deal on them at the craft store with a coupon! I was so excited to bring them to her and I didn't want them getting stolen or broken in my regular luggage so I wrapped them in bubble wrap and put them in my carry on for safe travels.

Well, the TSA agent proceeded to take off the bubble wrap, open the tin and remove tray after tray of these pencils. Being the chatty, extrovert I am, I proceeded to tell him all about Jules, her art, meeting her for the first time in person, and the fact that she can't buy the pencils over there and how great the sale and my coupon was! When he had them all laid out, I said, "Aren't they pretty?" He then laughed and agreed that they were pretty and that he would let me pack them all back up in my bubble wrap.


Moral of this story. If you find yourself in a dangerous situation, with only a box of colored pencils on hand, you can remove one, like lets say, Crimson Red and use it as a weapon because apparently, "they are sharp and dangerous." hee,hee,hee.

Eight hours later, we landed in England. I must say that customs over there was waaaaaaaaay easier and friendlier than customs here in the states. They had no worries about sharp and dangerous colored pencils and were only concerned if we had meat or dairy. Nope, and nope, so off we went to meet Jules and Sallieann.



For eleven years I have been best friends with Jules. We have exchanged letters, emails, gifts and collaborated on projects. Even though we Skype and have long conversations over cups of tea twice a month, to finally meet her in person was yet another incredible gift that I will treasure forever.


Jules is even cuter in person. I call her my little hobbit without fuzzy feet. She and I are always making Lord of the Rings references. 

Sallieann and I have been best friends for nineteen years. She and her husband, Mike, and their two boys James and Charlie, lived in New Bern, my old town, from 2000-2004. Back then, I taught Quilting 101 and other quilt classes part time at a local quilt shop. One day Sallie walked in the door and fell in love with it all. She signed up for my beginners class and was hooked!



Sallie is truly gifted and I always refer to her as my "Star Student." All these years later she is still quilting and is now a TV star and quilt teacher in England. She is even hosting a quilting cruise this year! I'm so very proud of her and everything that she has accomplished. All of it so well deserved.



When we planned this adventure, we wanted to do things that were non-tourist, off the beaten path, countryside, walking, hiking, coffee in quaint cafes, exploring kinds of things and the girls truly did not disappoint us.





We stayed in an absolutely charming, small town called Shepton Mallet, which is in the "Shire" County (Lord of the Rings.... shire....hobbits, clap my hands, bunny dance, can hardly stand it!) of Somerset.



The airbnb we stayed in was attached to a large manor home built in the 1600's. It was originally the stables. Our room had soaring high ceilings and the original, magnificent stable beams were exposed. The garden and courtyard was so beautiful.


Looking out of the window, across the town at the rooftops and stone cottages, I had this overwhelming feeling of being at home.



I felt at peace, happy and comfortable, like I had been there before. Maybe in some past life, I lived in England. It was all like a warm hug to me.


That evening we walked up the path and stone steps, through the church yard and down the alley to the center of town.




We then had a lovely dinner at an Italian restaurant. My veggie pizza was delicious! Every night Jules and Sallieann asked us what stood out as different compared to the states. That night is was the fact that you don't tip the waiter/waitress. They get paid a living wage and this is their career. No wonder they were all so much older. Living here in Wilmington, it's college kids who work in restaurants. You never see people my age waiting tables.


So this is how the adventure started. Traveling across the pond with sharp and dangerous objects to spend an entire week of "girlfriend time" with three of my bestest friends in the entire world. Complete with one giant smile that never left my face.

Join me back here next week for part 2.

Light, love and hugs,
Michelle

Wednesday, January 1, 2020

2020 - The Year of Trust

Hello friends and welcome to 2020!

Am I the only one who is in utter disbelief that 20 years passed by so quickly? Weren't we all just saying "Y2K," freaking out about the computer bug and singing Prince's song "1999? Back then, I was working for state government as a secretary. They sent me to the office right before midnight on New Years Eve to sit there and watch the office computers in case they blew up. Like I could do anything about it if they did! Fire extinguisher? Garden hose? Bucket of water? LOL! So ridiculous.



How times have changed. Heck, it's hard to believe I have had this little old blog for 12 years! Technology and information seems to come faster and faster and honestly, it wears me out some days. I find I miss the blogging days between 2007 and 2010. Those were the days before Facebook really took off. It was so fun and inspiring in blog land. I met the best people, learned interesting things, traveled without ever leaving my house and made lifelong friends. The closeness of us all back then was so comforting and kind. No ads flashing in our faces, no counting "Likes" or getting friend requests from strange men in Egypt (creepy!) and no algorithms controlled by people who sell your information. None of that at all. There were just friends who liked the same things. Friends who came by to visit each week to catch up and leave a kind comment or two.

But alas, things change and nothing gold can stay.


I've never been one to make New Year's resolutions. To think of all the stuff I screwed up during the year and then head into the new year feeling the need to "resolve" them like cat barf stains on the carpet. No thank you. To me, setting goals is much more fun and positive. In addition to setting goals, I love to have a focus word for the year. I usually just let the word come to me and this year the word that came was "Trust."



I read this piece by Brianna Wiest.

"When it is time for something new, you will feel it. You will feel a desire to let go, to shed layers, to move, to re-create. You will know because there will be subtle shifts all around you. You will release the old because you are really clearing the path for what's ahead. Trust this process. Know that life does not take from us anything unless there is something else immediately awaiting its replacement." 

That really spoke to me as I contemplated changes I wanted to make and goals I wanted to set going into this next decade. Trust can be hard especially when one has been burned and learned things the hard way so many times. But, I've decided I will just Trust the path and Trust the next chapter because I know the author. ;)



Happy New Year dear ones. I'll see ya right back here next Wednesday with a tale about three of my lifelong friends and a trip across the pond.

Hugs,
Michelle

Wednesday, December 25, 2019

Hello blogging my old friend

Hello dear friends,

Well, it's been a while. Quite a long while in fact. Summer and fall came and went and now it's Christmas day. There have been many adventures along the way and much I want to share with you. So, this is just a quick hop in to let you know that starting next Wednesday, New Years day, I will return to blogging once a week on Wednesdays. I have missed posting on my little peaceful place in this world and I have also missed sharing stories with you.












I hope to see you here next week. Until then, Happy Christmas and much love to you from me, David, Hannah bunny, Henry bunny and Sabrina kitty too.

A Side Hop Down Memory Lane

I know I said I would bring you part II of my trip to England, but this memory from 5 years ago popped up and it made me laugh. It made Dav...