Life, friends and family are truly wonderful blessings – the true secret to happiness

It’s always ‘way smart

when one listens to their bodies…and takes it easy to the xtreme.

Okay, true, I did get my P90x workout in, but besides that, I gave myself permission to take a nap in the morning, nix going to the gym, and enjoy some nice calm work online.

But the thing that really made an impression on me today was at karate. I normally do not take beginners anymore, as I’m ‘way past that, but my daughter’s friend participated so I joined in again. And I was able to watch my kids practice, and then see my husband arrive with the other kids, and watch how content they were….and I realized that now, in my 40s, life is really darned good.

I think that the true secret to happiness is appreciating the good times, loving your family, laughing with your friends, realizing the bad times – they do indeed pass, and witnessing how your actions can give joy to the lives of those important to you.

Work – it’s transient.

Shallow friendships – they’re beyond transient.

Angsting over the small stuff – a waste of time beyond belief.

Teaching the above to your kids and letting them internalize what’s really important to them – now that’s an incredible gift to give.

So! If you have folks you love and people you cherish and family members who mean the world to you – take the time and let them know how special they are. I did today, and it really made their day. So often, we just don’t take the time to let people know their importance in our lives.

I am one lucky woman indeed, I am.

Time to call it a night,


ps – Valentine’s day is coming up!

How to make super-relaxing aromatherapy massage oil

One of the nicest things

you can give your spouse/family/friends/etc. is a great massage. And it’s even better if you can make your own signature massage oil to use with it!

I was reminded of this…because I just ran out of my latest batch this morning. So I had to whip up another batch, which prompted me to share my expertise.

I always like using a mixture of aquaflor and olive oil. I generally use the ratio:

1 to 3

Aquaflor to olive oil

and then heat that until it all liquifies. Into that, I’ll put essential oils of:

  • rose
  • sandalwood
  • cinnamon (must be very careful with that, it can burn)
  • wintergreen
  • lavender
  • clove

When it cools down to room temperature, it’s a solid once again…and works dandy for massages.

I also have coconut oil but haven’t yet tried that in my mixtures.

In any case, the final product is great for when you do skin-on-skin contact. However, it’s not edible, so get that idea out of your head now. :) Stick with veggie oils if that’s of interest to you.



ps – some already-made massage oils are:

Listening to your body – the most important thing you can do


Today I awakened

and realized, my gosh, I feel like I’ve been run over by a herd of elephants followed by 17 steamrollers followed by a horde of toddlers who spied the FREE ICE CREAM! sign at their local preschool followed by….

So I made myself a huge breakfast, sat down, and took stock of my condition. Undeniable facts:

I’m only one person

I’m the only one who can build what’s needed

I need time for myself as well

I have to pace myself

I need to be on mom-duty in the evenings

and here are my wants

I want to have my projects finished yesterday

I want to always be available for my kids and husband

I want to spar in the adult class

I want to be able to survive on 6 hours of sleep

Applying the “needs” to the “wants”….and it looks like I have to cut down on my work load. Nobody ever whispered to their loved ones while on their death bed

“If only I had spent more time on the computer!”

So moderation is the theme for me today. I’ll give my body a break from the workout I normally do (or perhaps just do it later today)… and go into non-frantic, calm, methodical work mode. No time limits; we’ll see how that mental readjustment works out. I’ve put on my houserobe and fuzzy socks and will just….try to take it easy.

So! My wisdom for today – listen to your body and turn on a dime whenever needed. You’ll be much better off for it.



ps – Here are some nice relaxing thingees:

Decisions, decisions – karate sparring.

Boy, I really miss sparring.

At karate today, I saw some sparring going on, and wow oh wow, did I want to participate.

Thing is, though…after 8pm I’m generally comatose, and adult sparring is from 8:15pm to 9:15pm.

No sparring during the day.

With my work schedule, it would require a change of my sleeping/working out/etc. time to carve out time to be awake after 8pm.

Thing is part II, however…. with the insane hours I put in, being able to dive into physical sport is really quite energizing as well.


There should be 36 hours in a day.

Must consider wisely,


ps – some neat karate sparring gear includes:

The art of massage – so much more than a sensual exercise

One of the best things of working

at home is having a spouse who will proactively say, you look tired, want a massage? I had been working many hours straight since the wee hours of this morning, and let me tell you, that offer was one I snapped up with gratitude.

Now, massages can be a great prelude to sensual activities, but they can also be used as an extremely effective method for sheer relaxation with no strings attached. I’m a big proponent of massages; they’re a treat both to receive and to give.

Personally, I prefer the acupressure method of massages – that of following along your energy meridians across the back/legs/etc. There are lots of techniques you can use to relax the massagee, including music, aromatherapy, and long slow strokes coupled with emotional calmness.

Here are some of my favorite massage resources:

Now, regarding aromatherapy, I’ve found many people like my husband like the scent of lavender. I tend to associate instead scents of pine and rose with calmness (sandalwood is also a wonderful scent as well). One of the best places to get essential oils for massage oil is

Best of Nature

I’ve bought from there since 1993 and they always have a quality product (and super-fast mail delivery too!).

Finally, if you really want to get exotic with extremely feather-light massages…. use feathers! Peacock feathers, to be precise – they work wonders in sparking up the central nervous system. :)



ps – Some great massage discounts include:

Turn Opportunities for Great Frustration Into….

It never fails, you know.

Get a brilliant idea, implement it…and then realize, you forgot some of the Golden Rules of Website Design:

* Sites look different on different browsers

* Font sizes can be set by viewers

* Cascading menus can cascade off the screen if they’re deep enough

Ah well, these things happen. Today will be another 18 hour day, methinks.

But! The good news is that the new enhanced design is much easier to navigate…so in hindsight, it’s a good thing I ran into this opportunity to experience great frustration.

Every happens for a reason, you know. :)



ps – are you frustrated? If so, get these great frustration toys!

Mom! I have a CRUSH MOM! And he LIKES me! And ….

You know, back when I was growing up,

my mom was fond of saying, if anything is going to happen to anyone anywhere, it’s going to happen to my daughter.

Oh gosh, she has no idea how right she is!

You might remember from my last post that I was utterly fatigued from work today – I’ve been doing massive amounts of programming and finally, gave myself permission to step away from the computer. After all, my kids were coming home, and I figured, golly, this would be a simply peachy time to decompress and relax and enjoy their company.

So! Picture this – exhausted Mom, on her last leg, opening the door for her kids and hearing (and I quote!)

MOM! I have a crush! And he likes me! I know he likes me because we wrote notes! And our friends gave them back and forth! And MOM! I have a CRUSH! And he likes me! AND MOM! Guess what! I have a crush! AND….

See Mom.

See Mom internalize all of this.

See Mom think, okay quick, what on earth do I say?

Do I talk about being subtle?

Do I talk about taking things easy?

Or instead….

Do I simply let her be happy and continue to float above the clouds?

I opted for the second option, of course. :)

Why such things can’t happen when I’m alert and awake and full of energy, I do not know.

I was 14 when I went thru this…it’s kinda sorta poignant to see my kid start her own journey.

Motherhood – it’s a hero’s journey!! :)



ps – when your kids tell you the above, the following is certainly needed:

Know when to walk away and pamper yourself

How smart are you?

Do YOU know when to walk away from work and instead focus on pampering yourself?

This is one of the challenges entrepreneurs have, I will admit. If you’re the main power behind your company, you know that if you don’t do it….nobody else will!

But….therein lies the rub. I’m well-known for going bananas when it comes to work – I’ve been pulling insane hours for the past 10 days. The results are truly gratifying, mind you – it’s obvious that not too many people in this world can produce the quality I can in so short a time, but….

It really gets to you.

So! I have given myself permission to realize, I need to get away from the computer! If there was karate today, I’d be so thrilled – I’d love to spar and pummel/be pummeled by the black belts, but alas, no classes today. But the kids are due home soon, so methinks there will be a massive session of DDR in my future. Kid time is always the cure for work burnout.

What do YOU do when you need to get away from work? Have YOU ever considered pampering yourself? If so, here are some great resources:

Remember, tomorrow is always another day, and the world will not come crashing down in a heap if you take the time to be good to yourself.

What do you think?



ps – some nice ways of pampering yourself include:

Embracing your dreams – teach this to your kids


My brilliant colleague

Maureen Sharib posted an utterly brilliant article over at In The Direction of My Dreams. To wit:

….. When I was a little girl I remember asking my mother what she’d like to have for Christmas. She’d always say some version of the following: “I just want you kids (all five) to be good!”

It wasn’t until I was a mother myself for awhile that I understood her words.

A couple years back I was walking through a popular local high-end mall before Christmas with my twenty-two year old and oldest daughter, Andrea. The stores were festooned with holiday paraphernalia and their windows and aisles stuffed with merchandise that seemed to flow out into the corridors. As we passed the Coach store I could see her eyes fall on an eye-popping $300 what couldn’t have been larger than 6 x 8 number that wasn’t much thicker than an inch …..MORE….

Wow, she hits the point HEAD ON:

  • I want to go in the direction of my dreams. I want to go unfettered; I want to be unimpeded in my pursuits. I want those around me to stop telling me why something won’t work and start telling me, “Okay let’s try.” I want support in my undertakings and encouragement; I want praise when I accomplish something. I want someone to dry my tears, to be patient with my ramblings, to reassure my doubt.

To go in the direction of my dreams.

What a brilliant idea…and yet, how many of us, especially those who have a couple of decades of life experience under our belts, allow ourselves to be frightened off from believing in future successes and challenges?

Who ARE we, indeed….to dare to buck the trends?

To step out of line?

To tell the world who is watching, to hell with you, I believe in myself! and I will SUCCEED no matter what!

Who are we….INDEED.

Everyone one of us has the spark of greatness within us. But all too often, we allow that to be dampened by doubts. Doubts from others, doubts from within…doubts that shatter our courage and cause us to shrink back into what the world expects.

To hell with that, says I! When you are seized with a new idea or new concept or something that is so out of this world, it’s never been done before…internalize the courage to be the first one to take a chance and DARE to succeed. Even if you don’t reach your goals, you’ll have the precious knowledge gained from the adventure…knowledge that will bolster your next attempt in the future.

I’ve been aware of this idea all thru my life, I will admit. I well-remember back when I was 25 – I was on a bus traveling towards a white water adventure run with my colleagues from AT&T. There were two gentlemen in their 40s sitting in back of me, and I heard one tell the other

“…yes, about 10 years ago, I had this great idea that I was sure would work….but my wife convinced me not to give up my current job. So I never really was able to get it off the ground. You know, I really regret that now….. “

I remember thinking, my gosh, how sad. When I’m in my 40s, I’ll never have to say that!

And you know what? I’m 43 now…and I don’t have to say that whatsoever. All of my dreams, I’ve tried – I’ve had utterly brilliant successes and humorously ridiculous failures but in every single case, I can say, I had the dream and I gave it my best.

Remember, Thomas Edison said (okay, he probably didn’t but it sure reads well!)

  • Thomas Edison had already tried over 8,00 experiments in to invent the electric light bulb, none of which worked.
  • Newspapers criticized him, cIaiming Edison a failure.
  • His response: “I have not at all failed. I’ve just eliminated 8,000 possibilities on the road to inventing a light bulb. When I’ve eliminated the ways that won’t work, I’ll find the way that will.”

So. What are YOUR dreams? And are you taking the steps to make them come alive?

If not, ’tis a pity….. because if you won’t, who will do it for you?

’tis to think.



ps – here are some great motivational goodies:

What is sexy to you?

You know what is sexy to me?


I think if you’re confident in your own attractiveness and personality, you simply project a sexy image. It doesn’t have to be overt, it doesn’t have to be blatant…it’s simply, you know you’re a terrific human bean.

So many times, women (and men!) over 40 think that to be sexy, they have to compete with the 20 somethings or 30 somethings etc. I personally disagree. For one thing, if the person in whom you are interested is so shallow that they put looks/superficialness first, well then, that person really isn’t worth your time (or if she/he is, it’s simply to be used as a toy).

Your 40+ years have probably given you wisdom the younger set simply lack. Because you know yourself so well, you can project a aura of, I know my value…and if you’re smart, you’ll recognize it too. But hey, if you’re not, that’s your problem, not mine.

One of my favorite quotes is, I could be knock-kneed, cross-eyed and balding, and still be one of the sexiest persons anyone can meet. It’s all in the way you come across, all in the way you make the other person feel they’re the most important individual alive, all in the way you can enhance each other’s experiences.

So what is ‘sexy’ to you? Is it an open mind? Is it the ability to listen? If you’re attracted to me, is it biceps to die for and deltoids of delight? If you’re attracted to women, is it a figure that just doesn’t quit? And after the sex is done, is there anything else left that retains the aura of sexiness, or was it simply a transient experience that dissipates and leaves you feeling, ahem, what happened to the magic?

Know thyself! And your self-confidence will only improve.



ps – Want some sexy glasses?