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Posts from the ‘education’ Category

Give The Gift Of Life On Valentine’s Day

February is the month when we get candy, gifts of jewelry and flowers.  All of this is great, heart-health-4but we can get any of these anytime, and if truth be told if we wait until the evening of February 14, we can get them for about half price.

This year whey don’t you and your significant other give each other the gift of life?  February is not only Valentine’s Day, it is American Heart Month /Go Red for Women.  When was the last time either of you had your heart checked?  If it has been a while, here are a few tests to ask your doctor to give you.

  • Waist circumference
  • Blood pressure
  • Cholesterol
  • Fasting blood glucose
  • Weight and BMI

Instead of going solo to the doctor for these tests, take your significant other with you, and then accompany them when they have their tests.

The best gifts are not always the most expensive.  They can be the ones that are given from the heart–they can be priceless.

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Remember “thisisyourbestyear”.  Happy Valentine’s Day–give the gift of life.

 

Snap, Crackle, Pop–Our Bones Are Talking

That little old lady at church that walks with the cane can become you or me if we are not careful.  We must take preventive measures sooner not later to stop the advancement of brittle bones.  They are like everything else, the older they get, the easier they break and the more fragile they are.

Most of us think of osteoporosis as the disease that comes as we get really old, but it starts a lot earlier than we think, and it is very common.  There are well over 3 million new cases each year–these are just the people who go to the doctor.

Osteoporosis is a disease where the bones become weak and brittle.  This does not just happen in women. It can’t be cured, but it can be treated effectively if caught early.

Some of the things that contribute to osteoporosis are:

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To treat and/or prevent osteoporosis, we can:

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It is important that we consult our doctor before talking supplements and starting on an exercise program.

Remember “thisisyourbestyear“.  Taking small steps will help us continue to stand tall.

 

 

 

 

 

Letting The Silver Shine In My Hair

I finally decided to do it.  It wasn’t easy to let it go, but somewhere deep down inside I knew it was time.

India Arie told me that I was not my hair, but did I believe her?  I can remember to the date that my hair color changed from dark brown to red.  It was about the week after I graduated from high school.  I know this because my mother and I had discussed it for what seemed liked years.  Back then my Aunt Bonnie and my mother both colored their hair, and since I wanted to be them, I wanted to color mine.  My mother said that after high school graduation I could do just that.  From that week on my hair was some variety of red.  Most of the time I colored it a medium red, but occasionally it got a little light.  I was never fond of the darker shades, but I loved my red hair.

After I informed my daughters that I was going to stop coloring my hair, my youngest daughter suggested that I go natural too.  I told her one step at a time, and letting the silver shine through was the first step.  When the gray started to come in, I can honestly say I really didn’t remember what I looked like with my natural hair color.  It made laugh when my hubby told me he married a redhead, and I reminded him that I married a man with an afro–a big afro, and he was now sporting a ball head.

I’m not going to say I will never color my hair again–I am a woman of a certain age, and I can change my mind.  For now I have decided to let the silver shine through.  Who knows natural and blonde may be my next adventure.  Besides I can be a redhead whenever I want–I have enough alternative hair (wigs) to be almost every shade of red they make.

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 Remember “thisisyourbestyear”, you are not your hair.

 

 

Do You Have Enough To Retire?

The article below is an interesting article on how much the average household nearing retirement has in savings for the retirement years. How much do you have in your retirement account?

Take a look at the article written by Austin Smith for Motley Fool.  Can you really retire comfortably?

The Average American Household Approaching Retirement Has This Amount Saved Up

Remember “thisisyourbestyear”.  Save and invest for a comfortable retirement.

There Is Nothing Wrong With A Little Help

I must confess, that I could do rich very well.  I would be very nice to the people who worked for me–the housekeeper, landscaper (yes, I would have someone to plant the pretty flowers), the driver, the one who purchases the groceries, everyone.  But since it does not seem to be in the cards that I will ever be wealthy, I have decided that I deserve some help some of the time.

You can ask anyone who knows me, and they will tell you that I am a very good cook. When my children were young, I tried everything and had fun doing it.  Then one day they said the dreaded words “I don’t like that”.  Even then it was still fun, and I still enjoyed it.  As time has gone on, I have fallen in love with cooking shows.  If you ever watch the movie “Chef”, I even made his pasta dish after I went grocery shopping the following day.

There in part lies part of the problem that I face when it comes to cooking now.  There are basically three problems that make cooking unpleasant for me now.

  • Cooking the same thing time and time again.  It is easy to do.  It is just a habit that is hard to break and it makes everyone happy.
  • Grocery shopping is a job in itself.  When you do find a new recipe that you like, you have to go to the grocery store because there is a spice that it calls for, and you don’t have it.  Oh you can leave it out–it’s only a teaspoon, but that teaspoon matters. Then there are the questions, do I buy regular apples or organic apples?  What makes Central Market organic apples cost so much more than Walmart organic apples?  Are they even organic or is that just a fancy way to say pay more?
  • Cooking for two is so much harder than cooking for four.  There are recipes that are for two, but most are for at least a family of four.

I found the not so perfect solution to all three concerns.  I found *Blue Apron or my oldest daughter found it.  It does work.  First of all I noticed that she and my favorite son-in-law had lost weight.  She informed me that Blue Apron was portion controlled, and it did fill you up.  More importantly to me was the fact that all of the ingredients come with it, and the cost is reasonable.

I have enjoyed cooking new recipes for my hubby and myself, and even the girls like it.  I love the sides that come with it more than anything.  They are quick and easy.  The sides use ingredients that I usually have, but have never thought about putting together. My daughter wishes they would go one step further by chopping the ingredients too–that doesn’t bother me.  The meals are very tasty and the presentation is great too. The recipes are easy to follow–they have pictures to aid in this.  I have enjoyed every one of the meals with a few things that I would tweek if I did them again.

Since I can’t hire a chef, Blue Apron has become my personal chef, and it is worth it. I am not cooking the same things over and over and even going to the grocery store is more enjoyable.

*Blue Apron is not the only meal delivery service, I have friends who use others including Home Chef, Hello Fresh and Plated.  You might want to give one of them a try.  You do not have to receive a shipment every week, and there are vegetarian meals to choose from.

Everyone deserves a little help.  Remember “thisisyourbestyear”.  Bon appetit!

 

The Texas Conference For Women Is Sold Out–But!

The amazing Texas Conference for Women in Austin, Texas on November 15, 2016 is officially sold out.

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As luck would have it, there may be a way to get tickets to attend this sold out event. You can put your name on a list to grab tickets if they become available. If you want to hear great speakers, be inspired, attend wonderful workshops, network with women who are on the move and so much more, you need to try as hard as possible to attend this event. To try for tickets click please let me get a ticket. Hope you are lucky!  Remember “thisisyourbestyear”.

 

 

The Ladder Alliance–The Ladder To Independence

When most people think of domestic violence they generally think of black eyes, concussions, broken arms and more.  They think of a man and a woman physically fighting with the children crying. This falsehood tends to make all of us think that we don’t know anyone who is being abused, but we do.  There is emotional abuse.  Remember when our mother would tell us that “words hurt”.  They do, and so many victims (usually women) are victims of a verbal and emotional domestic abuse, not physical abuse. Most victims think there is no one out there to help them, but there are a number of places that are available

Even as the victims seek assistance, they seek a way for a fulfilled life after leaving the abuser.  They are looking for a ladder to help them climb out of a life that has left them with little or no job skills to support themselves and sometimes their children.  They are looking for the The Laddder Alliance.

The Ladder Alliance provides women domestic violence victims or low-income women with employment skills that will enable them to be self-reliant, independent and to lead successful lives. They are enrolled in classes that are taught by professional educators and business people. Their classes cover computer, professional and life skills that include Excel, professional writing and customer service.

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Sharon Cox, Executive Director and Founder leading a lunch and learn event.

This program offers a full size clothing boutique with new and gently used professional clothing that are “purchased” by the students not with money, but earned professional rewards (being on time, assignments, etc.). There is also childcare assistance and even homework assistance for the children if needed.

The Ladder Alliance offers several programs.  They offer basic computer skills training and professional office skills training. The cost for this is $20 or less covering all course material.

To find out more about any of the programs, the sites where classes are available and any other questions, call 817.834.2100 or go to Ladder Alliance.  There are several volunteer opportunities available.

Remember “thisisyourbestyear”–climb your ladder to success, then extend a hand to help someone else.

The World In A Box

See, smell and taste the world through food–sounds interesting doesn’t it.  You can do it! Every time I fly I take a look at the airline magazine, and try to do the puzzles.  This time while flying on American Airlines I ran across an article on Try The World and it caught my attention.

One thing that it seems most people can agree on is food.  The world is always interested in trying new and exotic taste.  Home cooks are trying to amp up their standard recipes by using different herbs and spices.  Try The World gives  you that opportunity in a cute box.

The box not only comes with ingredients, it comes with recipes, and a cultural guide to the country that the box features. If you only want snack foods, you can order their snack boxes.  My box is shown below–it came from Thailand.  My sister and I could not wait to taste some of the things that came in it.  Our first try was the Coconut Flower Syrup. She put it in tea and I tried it on toast.  We gave it 2 thumbs up. We’re kind of on a schedule to try the other items.  Each trying it a different way–Soft Dried Jackfruit is next.

You can find out more about this wonderful taste experience by going to Try The World and starting your adventure.  It’s the next best thing to traveling there.

Remember “thisisyourbestyear“.  Try The World in a box.

Addendum To 5 Tips For A Great Vacation 

Keep living, and you will keep learning. This is just a small addendum to my 5 tips for having a great vacation especially when you are away for more than 5 days.

Again it will depend on your accommodations. I don’t like bringing back luggage filled with dirty clothing. When staying at timeshares there are laundry facilities so there are no worries. But what if you are staying somewhere where there are no laundry facilities or you just don’t want to do laundry? Here is my suggestion.

  • Throw Away Clothing! What am I talking about? You know that blouse, those pants, that skirt, dress and yes that underwear that has been sitting in the closet or drawer for some time. Wear it and throw it away. About once a year when I was wearing pantyhose on a daily basis I would go through the drawer they were in and throw away every pair that was open, and start again.

My new rule since having Lifestyle Consierge help me get my closets and drawers organized is when something new comes in, something old or not being used comes out. If you do the throw away clothing then you will have room in your luggage for all of the great new stuff, or at least you have started cleaning your closets and drawers. It’s a win-win situation. 

Remember “thisyourbestyear” why spend it doing laundry after your great vacation?

The Amon Carter Museum’s Norman Lewis Exhibit

Guest post written by Dr. Britine Perkins, PhD.

Dr. Perkins

I was given the opportunity to preview the new Amon Carter Museum’s Norman Lewis exhibit before it opened to the public.  This was indeed a special opportunity as the ACM is only the 2nd museum nationwide to host this breathtaking exhibit. Because Lewis’s work is about movement, the pieces are grouped to showcase how his art evolved from figurative in the 1920’s and 30’s, to completely abstract expressionist by the 1940’s. He is one of a very few African-American artists to pursue this style of painting.

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When one thinks of abstract expressionist artists from the 1930’s to the 1960’s, immediately names like  Jackson Pollock , Picasso, de Kooning, Max Ernst, and one of my personal favorites, Frank Stella, among many others will come to mind. Unfortunately, what does not come to mind are African-American abstract expressionist artists, which was usually considered a rare departure for an African American artist (at one meeting in Italy that featured the likes of Polluck and de Kooning, Lewis was the only African American in the room, much like this preview where I was only one of two minorities in the room).  For Norman Lewis, who was born in 1909 in Harlem, expressing the energy of the Renaissance unfolding around him profoundly influenced his work. Early on in his career, he realized that he wanted to paint the Black experience, just not in the figurative way that was expected on African American artists of that time. By the 1940’s, he had rejected painting figurative works, and painting what he wanted to paint. Because he was African American he was not truly accepted by the white abstract expressionist artists, nor was he accepted by African American artists who felt the only way to express Black life was through figurative art.

Although considered a successful artist (his work was exhibited in over 130 exhibitions in his lifetime) he did not receive the true recognition as an abstract expressionist artist till after his death, something he has always predicted.  Regardless, he continued to paint the way he wanted:  American life is diverse and so should the art that depicts it, a struggle that Norman Lewis is definitely winning, even if posthumously.  Today many of his pieces are being sold for between $250,000 and $350,000, while during his lifetime, most sold for less than $20,000 as noted in a recent March 2016 CBS Sunday Morning clip (Reappraising the art of Normal Lewis) about his long overdue rightful recognition as an abstract expressionist artist.

After viewing just some of his extraordinary works, one leaves with an overwhelming admiration for a man who fought racism on both sides and yet continued to do what he wanted to do.  Although he was overlooked in his lifetime, I for one am very glad to see him finally get his due as not just an African-American artist, but one of this nation’s greatest abstract expressionist artists.

The Procession: The Art of Norman Lewis will be om diplay until August 21, 2016. To find out more about this wonderful exhibition and all of the other things click Amon Carter American Museum of Art.

Remember “thisisyourbestyear”, enjoy great works of art.

 

 

 

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