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LET’S SLOW DOWN TO GET FAST RESULTS

What do I mean by this title of my blog message? I feel we have gotten into a manic rush form of thinking and doing. Let’s look at the names of appliances and social media such as InstaPot and InstaGram, Snapchat, etc. We have adapted our minds to an Instant Decision Making Process. No longer do we take reasonable time to consider the consequences of our actions. My focus on this message is perhaps on the important matters, we should use the Slow Cooker method to allow our decisions to simmer long enough to obtain the maximum positive results. Let’s dive in, and go over the options of pros and cons of thinking and how our actions can affect our lives.

Photo courtesy of Indeed.com (they own rights to this image)

My Assessment of this Use of Thinking Skills

In my lifetime, not one time but many, I have used impulsive buying as in see something, buy something. Impulsive buying has had a probable result of 50-50 satisfaction. I think if I had exercised 1, 2, and 3 steps, I could have moved my satisfaction meter up to at least 75% or higher. Tags on clothes, that I gave away due to the 50% non satisfied are proof.

Communication #4 has been boggled by social media. The intention of most of our social media platforms was to engage all of us, even though we have different locations, ethnic backgrounds, work diversification, religious and political beliefs, genders, etc. This sounds like a great idea but it also allows for dissension among the social media followers and argumentative actions can be counter productive. Maybe unbiased research and conversations in a private setting may be more productive and less hostile. Constructive criticism (I hate the word criticism as it negates any positivity so I like to use input or feedback) if used in a character building manner can be useful.

Problem Solving #5 is a way of life for me, maybe to a fault. If someone, even someone that I have the highest regard and value their intelligence, tells me of a problem or situation that requires solution and/or resolution I want to offer my opinion immediately. This is not a good thing and I am working on it. Let’s see what I have been working on to help solve problems but not mandate my solution:

  • If I ask questions instead of making recommendations, this gives the person an opportunity to self help of making decisions with a confidence builder for them.
  • Once a person has stated a problem, by asking a question of what they think should or could happen to resolve this problem, it puts the ball back in their hands. It becomes their decision, not yours.
  • Listening instead of talking, asking instead of telling will be more effective and the recipient of any input from me is better received.
  • Caring enough to follow up with someone who has stated a problem on the status, what has been accomplished, what is still outstanding, and if not resolved, ask what they feel is the next step.

I am going to take a step backwards to #2 Analysis. I am learning, WIP, to do what I term as Realistic Analysis. What is the difference by adding Realistic to Analysis? I am a writer and also a very positive person. I see the best, but I have learned that I have to expect realistic results. Prince Charming is not every man or every woman is not a Princess. There are trolls and evil queens outside of fairy tales. Realism is a realistic way of life and we should analyze possibilities in a realistic visual. Some examples are creams help diminish wrinkles topically but they are still part of the aging process and even though the creams help, we can expect this is an ongoing part of aging. We can dream to accomplish what we would love to happen in our lives, but the reality is, can we live without that dream if it doesn’t come to us? We can, we can also dream of other accomplishments we can realistically achieve while we work on the master dream.

Sipping Cups of Inspiration is now in its 10th year with well over 150 countries viewing it.

Let’s slow down, brew a slow brew of delicious coffee bypassing the instant coffee. Let’s doodle, draw, write, sing, dance, exercise, meditate, contemplate, envision, go fishing, watch football, baseball, or even work puzzles, cook or bake instead of take out. We are each going to come to a Stop Sign of Life and that is about as realistic as it gets. LIVE LIFE, LOVE LIFE, AND LIVE AND LOVE LIFE TO THE FULLEST BY SLOWING DOWN TO SMELL THE ROSES!

(C) COPYRIGHT 2012-2022 Arline Miller of Sipping Cups of Inspiration and Reinvention Queen with all rights and privileges reserved. Third party material including photos are sourced, if known, to original location/author for credit reference.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT

Food For Thought: I have given much thought as to what effect if we knew what was going to happen before it actually happened. Would we change course, would we run as fast as we could, would we accept the inevitable, what would we do? During life, we get hit with unexpected situations, changes, losses, gains, relationships, moves, windfalls and devastations. We question Why and either celebrate or find ourselves wondering how we will overcome this obstacle.

I am not sure we would benefit from knowing. My reason for this assumption is in my life, I have grown from the difficult times. I have learned from my mistakes and yes, from other’s mistakes too. I have learned compassion and empathy from life’s events. I have mourned the losses, appreciated the wins, and have found and lost love. I have learned all friends are not true friends and have learned how to figure out which is which. I have worked for a long time in different vocations and if you asked me which I enjoyed the most I would reply all of them because each one taught me how to use different skills and talents. I have been shocked by so many things that these experiences have taught me not to be shocked and actually expect the unexpected. This taught me how to be flexible. I have learned to not depend on mankind without having the firm faith in God who takes care of us if we trust and believe. I learned from my experiences with mankind an important structural fact…Man is Limited but God is Limitless. Giving things in which we find ourselves limited over to God enhances the possibility of obtaining what is out of our control.

Yes, it seems like it would be an easy life if we had the prior knowledge of things to come. I would like to offer a hint to all who believe in The Holy Bible. It gives us a heads up as to the future. No, it doesn’t give dates but at least we are given a true picture, even those listed in parables, of the possibility of a future in Heaven where it will not be necessary to wonder what is going to happen tomorrow. Just saying, put our faith and trust in God that everything can be all right if we live for God to serve His Truth.

Have a blessed day in Christ and love each other as He Loves Us.

May be an image of sky

This is a short blog post that I placed on my FaceBook Page but I wanted to share with you. I do not push my faith on anyone as I firmly believe we have to find our own salvation. I do wish everyone peace and joy in your lives.

(C) Copyright 2012 – 2022 Arline Miller of Sipping Cups of Inspiration and Reinvention Queen with all rights and privileges reserved. Third party material is sourced to location and author, if known, for credit references.

SPEAKING FROM MY HEART

Speaking from my heart, the blog covers why we either show how much we care or why we put our needs ahead of others needs.

This past weekend was a super celebration of several recognition. My birthday was on Saturday, my daughter’s birthday was on Sunday, and we celebrated Father’s Day too. My mind has been collecting thoughts on how special these occasions are, not for presents which are great, but for the precious time for laughter, fun, reminiscing over past celebrations, and emotional tugs for those missing in our wonderful times.

We started out with a normal size family and now, today only my sister and me are still living. We miss those who are no longer with us.

Now, that the days of recognizing the blessings of being granted another year has passed, I wanted to speak from my heart on what I perceive as good qualities in people and what I feel is the loss of a great opportunity to create good memories by either selfish motives and/or ignorance of the importance of living in times that will not be repeated. It is up to people what is important but I felt very much love on my birthday, Missy had time with friends and us and it was great, and Greg enjoyed his Father’s Day too.

My daughter who celebrated her birthday with her Dad who she took care of for over two years who passed away. He was recognized as it was Father’s Day.

Let’s just get this out in the open as I know some people were lonely over this weekend, somehow forgotten on their birthdays, and Mother’s Day and Father’s Day as well as all the other holidays are not recognized with even a phone call or card. In the past, I have seen the good, bad, and ugly actions and have heard of those who are alone and the hurt they feel. Are you guilty of placing your own priorities in front of your parents, children, and other members of your family to do things with friends, play golf or other hobbies?

My husband celebrated Father’s Day with an added bonus of us going to visit the grandchildren with some ice cream. Greg’s son, Cory was cooking on the grill for his family and some of the grands had made dishes. Good going, Nolan, Jonas, and Elias for being helpful on Father’s Day.

Am I A Considerate Person or Am I Selfish?

I thought I would create a list of Dos and Don’ts for us to read and mentally check off this rather candid look in the mirror:

  • Do I check to see what my family members are planning for a holiday/celebration before I make personal plans?
  • How often do I make a phone call or even a text to find out how an elderly family member, friend, neighbor, and/or associate is doing?
  • Do I expect others to check on my health or well being instead of considering others’ health and well being?
  • Do I make plans without any consideration for my family?
  • Do I make the effort to recognize other’s accomplishments, special occasions, awards, or just a feel good text, message, and/or phone call?
  • Do I want to be encouraged by others or do I want to be the cheerleader?
  • Here is the big one….Is it all about me or do I feel better if I have done something special for someone else?

All of us are guilty of any of these at one time or another, or at least I know I have been selfish at times, but I am not proud of that. Let’s take a look in the mirror and start with Father’s Day that was this weekend. Did we go out of our way to recognize our fathers that are living? I can almost without fail say that those who have lost their Dads felt a void, wrote a message, posted pictures, but can we truthfully say we exercised every effort to be with them, take care of them, and show them love. Remember, no one lives forever and all of us will leave this earth. This is not in our control but we can control our actions while we are living and others too.

Nuff said, but I will add one personal note. When Mom was in the nursing home, my sister and I were very good to visit, shop for her, assist in her care when we were there, give her reasons to laugh, and provide all of us with precious memories. I worked all week, lived two hours away, but left each weekend that was possible to stay with her each weekend day, and only leave her for a few hours to sleep after she had gone to sleep. I don’t regret a second of that time. It gave me forever memories. My sister was faithful to go during the week. All this was out of love. When the New Year came near, I dreaded the traffic and thought I would wait until the second day of the new year to go for my usual weekend. I got up early that morning and packing my clothes in the car, ready to go and I received that dreaded phone call that Mom had passed an hour before. I cannot tell you how I replayed that call, that decision, and the cold fact I couldn’t see her one more time. She knew she was loved, but those actions or non actions can be long lasting so I say to everyone, if you can visit or see your loved ones, by all means, DO IT!

I turned 73 and I had the best presents…my daughter and my husband making my day special. I had so many Happy Birthday Greetings I had to group thank everyone.

(C) Copyright 2012-2022 Arline Miller of Sipping Cups of Inspiration and Reinvention Queen with all rights and privileges reserved. Third party material is sourced if location/author are known for credit reference.

ACCEPTING YOURSELF TO ACCEPT OTHERS (2020 Post)

I have given this post a lot of thought. It seems we are struggling to accept others and this struggle has brought a lot of discord among all people. Politics have taken the place of parenting as we are persuaded to think this way or another. As children, our source of influence was simpler. We had parents who wanted us to behave in a certain way, respect or even disrespect according to how they felt, and our faith had a lot more to do with how they believed than a personal relationship with a Higher Power. Today, I look at the pros and cons of thinking on our own and finding ways of accepting ourselves in order for a better assessment of how we feel about others.

Let us begin with the quote from Lucille Ball:

Love Yourself First And Everything Else Falls İnto Line. You Really Have To Love Yourself To Get Anything Done İn This World.

How can we expect to love others with their imperfections if we do not accept our imperfections? How can we accept love from others when we are incapable of accepting self love?

I looked at this perception of love and I know this is the key to a more peaceful transition. This quote from John Spence is reflective of my thoughts:

Maybe if we get alone with ourselves, accept the good qualities we possess, as well as the imperfections which may be inherent or here’s a thought…We can work on ourselves first to improve our ability to co-exist with others if we obtain a peaceful environment about ourselves. I have assembled some questions to begin the contemplation of whether we truly love ourselves as a person:

Here are some thought provoking questions:

1- If I met someone exactly like myself, would I like them or would I find fault?

2-Could I carry on a conversation with me and find it interesting, boring, or antagonizing?

3-When I am alone, am I content or do I try to find alternate ways to avoid myself by eliminating alone time?

4-When looking in a mirror, do I look at myself realistically or do I imagine a different person staring back at me such as a younger, leaner, athletic, or a more contented person?

5-Do I value my thoughts and write down my thoughts or do I depend only on others written words?

6-Do I share my thoughts or creative ideas on how to do something with others or offer to teach things I know how to do well?

7- Do I always find myself in contradiction to surroundings, events, news, books, movies, etc.?

8-Can I compliment myself when I exhibit good qualities or do I shy away from personal achievement or recognition?

9-Do I see my life as a success, even with occasional set backs or do I feel like a failure?

10-Can I express love for myself to do the following instructions as expressed by Dr. Steve Maraboli?

This self evaluation is necessary for us to be fair in how we accept others. It would be impossible to accept others if we cannot accept ourselves. We, as well as others, will never be perfect. Imperfection is a part of love, self and expressing love to and for others. In life, the average looking girl can be happier than a homecoming queen sometimes. The reasoning is the bar was never pushed so high for the average girl but so high for the homecoming queen that maintaining happiness is not sustainable as time and wrinkles come. Live in reality, love the uniqueness of each individual by initially accepting yourself.

(C) Copyright 2012 -2022 Arline Miller of Sipping Cups of Inspiration with all rights reserved and to be used with permission. Third party material is sourced to original location if known for credit references.

THE TIME IN BETWEEN. FROM THE CROSS TO THE RESURRECTION

As a blogger and writer, there are times in between events and I occupy myself. Always at this time, this post comes to my mind about the time in between the Crucifixion and the Resurrection. It seems worthy of reposting this year. Happy Easter to all of us who celebrate this holy holiday and may each of us have a beautiful reason to know why we celebrate it.

This is a repost from 2014 but I found it to be appropriate as we move into Good Friday. TODAY THE WORDS are THE TIME IN BETWEEN. We have obligations, appointments, meetings, scheduled events, etc. which have specific times set aside throughout our days, weeks, and months. We write them down and plan to be on time and sometimes we schedule several places to be on the same day to make the most of our time. While doing this, we have some unavoidable down time or some time in between. We find ourselves with a half hour, an hour or sometimes two with nothing to do. What do we do with our time in between two events? Some of us bring our iPads, books, puzzles, etc. and fill our time either wisely or just idling with very little productivity. This made me have a deeper thought about this Easter holiday. When the events occurred on Good Friday and with the promise from Jesus to His followers He would rise on the third day; how did they fill the time in between? Did they sit around and mourn Jesus’s death as we do today when one of our loved ones die? The tomb was sealed so they could only visit the outside. Did they stay watchful or did they have the confidence to wait the days out? How did the conversation go between all of the disciples? Did they fear their safety knowing others had seen the Lord’s strength during his torturous death? Did they reminisce about His miracles Jesus had performed? How did they fill the time in between?

Easter cross
All of us may know what happened on Easter Sunday with all of the celebration and miraculous resurrection; but my mind has been directed to the time in between and here is what I feel. Our lives are actually time in between. We are born into this world and then we die. All of our life is this time between birth and death and what we do is important to prepare for our resurrection into Eternity. How do we fill our time in between or in other words, what do we do with our lives? Do we fill our time with productivity and good works or do we idly fill our time with nonsense and useless activities? Do we learn, earn, live, and love? Do we reach out to help others find their way? We are taught about Good Friday and Easter, but I think we need to spend some of our time understanding how important the time in between was. Life is here for us and while we show reverence and love for Jesus’s sacrifice for us; let us use our time in between wisely. Happy Easter to all and a Happy In Between Time to fill with goodness.


For positive affirmation with “the power of positive thinking” I am including a short article for you to read: The Power of Positive Thinking

“Your attitude, not your aptitude, will determine your altitude.”

Did you know that some of the world’s most successful people – including professional athletes, actors, business-people, artists, and spiritual leaders, attribute their success to one thing, above all else?

Its called “the power of positive thinking,” and more and more regular people are harnessing this incredible force to achieve happiness, personal success and abundance in their lives.

If you want to successfully change your attitude, it is important to know that, just like a magnet, your thoughts, expectations, and beliefs attract everyone and everything that enters into your life, both positive and negative.

How To Be Happy
Does anger, worry, fear, anxiety, and/or depression lead your emotional state and thought patterns?

If so, then experiences validating these thoughts are exactly what you will attract into your life. Good thing for you, there is a very effective solution.

What is the secret to making the power of positive thinking work for me?

Meditation. In order to manifest positive experiences into your life, you must change your thoughts, which must be done from the root: the subconscious layers of your mind.

Once meditation melts all of the layers of worry, anxiety, depression, and fear clogging up your thought processes, your new-found mind-mastery, with crystal clear thinking, and positive mental attitude allows you easy manifestation of anything you want, whether it be love, good health, wealth, more friends, or success.

Easter hope
Scripture Excerpt from The Bible:

John 20:16-18 Jesus said to her, “Mary.” She turned toward him and cried out in Aramaic, “Rabboni!” (which means Teacher). Jesus said, “Do not hold on to me, for I have not yet returned to the Father. Go instead to my brothers and tell them, ‘I am returning to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’ ” Mary Magdalene went to the disciples with the news: “I have seen the Lord!” And she told them that he had said these things to her.
positive thoughts

(c) copyright 2012-2022 Arline Lott Miller. The material here copyrighted, with all rights and privileges reserved. Third party material/photos are sourced when known to original location for credit reference.

GARDENER’S GLOVES IV

During this burst of Spring, we have planted the herb planters and it is such a sign of future life and freshness to our meals, I decided to pull this popular post. I love seeing my friends getting into the garden phase and also getting our yards in shape with new straw, fertilizers, new plants, and trimming up for maximum blooms. It makes me remember those are not here any more like my Mom who spent her days in her garden beds. Sweet memories and I cherish each of her plants that live on in our yards. Have a beautiful spring and don’t forget to get some soil on your hands or as this post suggests, Gardener’s Gloves. Good gardening produces tasty and healthy foods so we can make great salads and other dishes. I sometimes return to older posts for refreshment of thought. I dedicated it to a great gardener Linda Christian and who is genuinely missed by so many of us

A nice way to reward the family is with a salad from your own garden.
Contained garden to keep out unwanted guests who like to serve themselves.

THE GARDENER’S GLOVE was a popular message and I love the lessons behind it. We have a beautiful growing container garden this year. I have mentioned our garden before but in watching our “crop” grow, I am amazed at how the rain, the pruning, and the feedings affect the amount of growth. It led me back to how proper care of ourselves can affect our growth and especially our health. Stay tuned and when we begin the harvesting, I will share some recipes and photos.



TODAY THE WORDS are THE GARDENER’S GLOVE This topic may seem a little strange coming from a lady whose husband does all of our landscaping and who considers herself blessed to not have to pull weeds (but he doesn’t do a lot of that with his routine weed control). I have several FB friends who grow beautiful gardens (Linda Christian whose birthday is today and she can make us envious of her gardening skills and beautiful spirit of sharing with others) , some who are in their rose gardens and flower beds, and there are my friends who do not like the outdoor gardening at all. I love flowers and there is nothing better to eat than fresh home grown vegetables but I think my resistance stems from my childhood.


Let’s return to my childhood to give you my thoughts. In order to make some money, my Mother grew turnip and mustard greens in our back garden. Before school, and sometimes in the bitter cold, we would go to the garden, gather the greens which were ready, clean them off and bundle with string. Off to the grocery store they would go and off to school we would go. It wasn’t the work as I had too much energy; we didn’t use gloves. In those days, you used your hands (maybe others had enough money to buy gloves; not us). It was the smell of the greens on my hands and mind you, I washed my hands several times and they were as clean as they were going to be. I see my husband prepare, by putting on gloves, before he goes out to do yard work, gardening, and/or pruning. He is very particular about how the gloves have to fit as a proper fit will not slow him down. He jokes with other guys that his wife does yard work. He says “She tells me where to put everything and walks back in the house.” He smiles when he says it but I know he loves being in the yard and in control of its beauty. I am usually the one who is in charge of the interior of our home and I love doing it.


Now for the deeper thought….as important as gloves are to a gardener or landscaper…..gloves of life are as important to our being. Gloves are a protective covering to avoid scratches, cuts and sometimes bites from insects. They wrap around the hand and fingers securely and when properly fitted, are an extension of our very bodies. They become a second skin in other words. Our “character” is a pair of gloves of life. We start, at an early age, to develop (or put on) our character which comprises of several things: our personality; our integrity; our work ethics and our moral ethics (may be the same or sometimes not); our nurturing persona; and our spirituality. With the proper gloves of life, we can garden our souls and protect ourselves from the scratches, bites, and burns which the garden of life brings. I am not discounting God’s influence in our gardens, but we as His Children, need to put on our gloves and protect ourselves too. Good gardening, my friends, and don’t forget your gloves.

FEATURED BIBLE VERSE:Genesis 2:9

And out of the ground the Lord God made to spring up every tree that is pleasant to the sight and good for food. The tree of life was in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.

(C) Copyright 2012-2022 Arline Lott Miller. The material here copyrighted, use only by permission. Third party material, if known, is sourced to the original location for reference.

DID CUPID’S ARROW HIT ITS MARK?

While Cupid is getting its quiver filled with romance arrows, it made me pause and wonder what kind of accuracy does Cupid have? Have you ever thought how many arrows made their mark in the lovers’ hearts? Do the lovers know how they were targeted to be together? While many are wondering if Cupid even knows their location and how long is it going to take for him to load his bow of love and for him to take aim in their direction. Today, this blogger who feels she was shot by Cupid’s arrow not in February but on a hot August day back in 1999.

Wikipedia describes Cupid in the following way:

Cupid is winged, allegedly because lovers are flighty and likely to change their minds, and boyish because love is irrational. His symbols are the arrow and torch, “because love wounds and inflames the heart.” These attributes and their interpretation were established by late antiquity, as summarized by Isidore of Seville (d. 636 AD) in his Etymologiae.[16] Cupid is also sometimes depicted blindfolded and described as blind, not so much in the sense of sightless—since the sight of the beloved can be a spur to love—as blinkered and arbitrary. As described by Shakespeare in A Midsummer Night’s Dream (1590s):[17]Cupid sculpture by Bertel Thorvaldsen

Love looks not with the eyes, but with the mind
And therefore is winged Cupid painted blind.
Nor hath love’s mind of any judgement taste;
Wings and no eyes figure unheedy haste.
And therefore is love said to be a child
Because in choice he is so oft beguiled
.[18]

Photo from Wikipedia

I thought I would share a personal story of my own when Cupid (disguised as a dear friend of mine) brought me right in the path of love’s arrows. My friend who I will call Cupid worked with the man who was destined to be my love for the rest of my life. She, knowing I had experienced the let down of love and romance, kept saying to me on the phone that every time Greg said something, she thought of me.

Over a span of almost 3 months, she tried every trick in the book and kept shooting arrows but I dodged them. I kept throwing the arrows back with every possible objection but she wouldn’t give up. Finally, in an effort to get her off my back, I agreed to meeting him on a visit to see her. I thought, I go, I meet, and then I could say I wasn’t interested or even better, he wouldn’t be interested in me. So the next Tuesday, I had to go through the town they worked in and arranged a lunch date with her with plans of quickly meeting him. Oh yeah, I thought I was so smart and cunning. Her plan was destined to fail. In all fairness, Greg was thinking the same thing. He was ready to get her to stop talking about this Arline. I find it so ironic that she was working us both and we both had the same mindset…..Don’t need romance…..Don’t want the hassle of another relationship…..And we were ready to shut up “cupid”.

The actual story of how it worked out is hilarious and I will save it for another day because there are many facets of that fated day with both Greg and I not getting a look at each other, thinking that the other was not interested, and that this was going to be easier to resolve than we thought. All miscommunication until we met. I couldn’t imagine all the lovers that have been hit by Cupid’s arrow, but I will tell you that once Greg walked out the door of his office and we took one look at each other, that lil Cupid shot those arrows into our hearts…we have been in love with each other since that time. Cupid sat in a corner watching us as we talked as if we had known each other all of our lives.

22 years later, we are together, as husband and wife of soon to be 21 years, and if ever two people were meant to be together, we are. We blended our families and what matters most, is we have a marriage of God’s inclusion. We may kid about how we met, but we know God played a part in sending love via our friend. Nuff said!

Here are Cupid’s “happy wedded victims of love” in April 2001.
Here we are in 2021, still snared by the arrows of love.

For the entire article 7 Ways Your Love Can Last Forever go to this link:

https://goodmenproject.com/featured-content/what-is-really-important-in-a-marriage-or-relationship-bbab/

1. Honor Your Differences

Respect is the cornerstones of our relationship. We may not always see things the same way, but we respect the ability to have different thoughts and ideas. We never put each other down to others or to each other. There is no faster way to erode a relationship.

2. Keep an Open Door Policy

Allowing your partner to share how they view and experience an event, and how they are feeling without judgment creates an environment of trust. As important as it is to share, it is just as important to listen and to really hear what the other is saying. This creates a healthy dialogue and a strong foundation.

Shared laughter can bond an  experience and create great memories.
Let us continue on!

3. Don’t Lose Yourself in the Relationship

You are your own person with your own feelings and thoughts. You had your own friends before you met. If you give them all up for your spouse or romantic partner, you are snuffing out part of who you are and you may feel resentment later. My husband goes bowling with his friends weekly. It’s his time to be away from “us” and hang out with his buddies. I enjoy time with my friends too and then we then look forward to being together as a couple even more.

4. Remember Who You Fell in Love With

Don’t try to change your partner to a version of them you think they should be. It is a lose/lose proposition. Not only is it not really possible, it causes resentment. Remember the reasons you fell in love in the first place. Honor that person. If someone has to bend over backward to make you happy, or you have to do it for them, your relationship has lost its authenticity.

5. Tickle Your Funny Bones

Laughter is a stress reducer and an energy infuser. Shared laughter can bond an experience and create great memories. My husband and I always look for little ways to make each other laugh. Humor in a relationship makes being together more enjoyable. When you are not together, thinking about a time when you were laughing and having fun will make you smile and feel closer to your partner.

6. Put Love on the Calendar

Date nights are important to keep a relationship fresh. It keeps a couple from stagnating with the same boring routine. You don’t have to spend a lot of money to have a special night together. It can be as simple as dinner and a movie at home, or going out, and can be elaborate as well if it fits your budget. What matters is scheduling it so you both have something to look forward to. We like to record our favorite shows during the week and watch them together. One night a week we plan dinner out. Phones and computers are put away! Keep the date on the calendar, get a sitter if you have kids, and bring on the romance and fun that is part of dating, no matter how long you have been together.

7. A Little Appreciation Goes a Long Way!

Expressing gratitude to each other every day will keep you close. We share with each other at mealtime, telling each other something about our day that was special that we are grateful for. And we always try to notice the efforts the other made for us, even if it’s just doing the dishes, taking out the trash or washing the car. Showing appreciation for the little things that seem routine makes us look for ways to help each other out even more. Gratitude has a way of opening up your heart. Many of the things that may have annoyed us in the past aren’t even noticed anymore. That’s something to be grateful for!

Note from me, Arline Miller: Love can be instantly projected but true love lasts when the initial fantasy becomes reality and the heart accepts the truth of love is acceptance, growth, being a constant in life, and even more, a forgiving heart. May Cupid find your heart’s forever love but may God sustain your love is my Valentines Wish for You!

(C) Copyright 2012-2022 Arline Miller of Sipping Cups of Inspiration and Reinvention Queen with all rights and privileges reserved. Third party material is sourced, if known, to original location and author for credit references.

BROKEN ORNAMENTS ARE LIKE LIFE III

2021 Holiday Message from Arline Miller, blogger for Sipping Cups of Inspiration: As we were hanging our interior wreath which has some of the vintage ornaments we display in a high position to keep safe, I straightened some of the ornaments and noticed the Raggedy Ann and Andy was broken. I guess it happened after we took it down. My heart wouldn’t allow me to take it down so I turned it to a position the broken part was not visible. It happens and makes this post more relevant in life as well. Have a Merry Christmas and let us pray for a Happy New Year keeping all of us safe and sharing peace in this world.

Here is our vintage wreath and you can see Raggedy Ann & Andy in their sled.

Since we are blessed with nine grandchildren and one of them still in toddler stage, I bypassed putting up our traditional tree and went with an interesting Cardinal Tree with hand painted birdhouses by the grandchildren with a Granddaddy and Nana two hole birdhouse as the topper. No breakable ornaments to worry about. We had one of the grands here with us yesterday (in the photo) who thought the birds looked real and the tree was awesome. It reminded me of this post I wrote in 2016 about the similarity between broken ornaments and broken lives. Maybe it needs repeating. May your holidays be filled with many moment of love and may all of your ornaments and lives stay in one piece.  

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Jonas Miller finding his birdhouse ornament on our Christmas tree 2018

    Here is the original blog message: BROKEN ORNAMENTS ARE LIKE BROKEN LIVES  

TODAY THE WORDS are BROKEN ORNAMENTS.  On this morning, my mind went to a place of remembrance of how it feels to lose something or as you will see “someone”. A lot of times in my writing, in order to put feelings in simpler terms, I use what I can replacement memories. If it is something we can relate to everyday or normal events, it is somehow easier to get a point across to others or at least it can make common sense. Most of us have our Christmas trees, or if not, we have occasions which have ornaments or displays which have a value to them and to us when we show them to the world. As a Christian, we have the decorated Christmas tree to celebrate Christmas season. For most of us, we start early collecting the ornaments, and even though the monetary worth is usually low; the emotional worth can be priceless. We unwrap them very carefully and hang them and a lot of Wow, Ooh, and Aah’s are heard as the ornaments are hung. Some have their “spots” to be hung; some even are hung in order. We add new ones each year but it is the older ones we cherish more and are so protective. My thoughts bring me to a sad thought of opening a box of ornaments, however carefully wrapped and cared for, finding one broken or even more than one and it is devastating. It doesn’t matter how many other wonderful, shiny ornaments we have; it is the loss of this one which takes our heart and crushes it. Even though the tree will still be beautiful, we know one of the best ornaments is no longer going to hang around and allow us to look at it and recall the years it has been around.  This photo occurred a few days ago and it was so ironic that it would be this ornament that I had bought when my daughter’s cat became intrigued by the ornaments on the tree and decided to knock them off and push them down the stairs. After all of these years, about 20 that I have had that funny ornament, it came apart while hanging it and broke.

Yep, it happened. It is ironic that after 20 years, it finally broke without a cat around.

I see the same thing in life and now for the thought given to my heart…..Life is like the Christmas tree. We start life with a tree with some ornaments and we begin to add ornaments such as family and friends. Our tree begins with few and usually ends up with many lovely additions or “ornaments”. We, as loving people, take care of our “ornaments” by taking care of our siblings, starting our own families, and making sure our parents (the oldest ornaments and highly cherished) are cared for by wrapping them with love and care. Once in a while, one of the newer ornaments fall suddenly, without warning and are broken beyond repair and it is a tragedy. Some of the ornaments age and have to be cared for and repaired. They become fragile and we handle them carefully. When they finally break, and we can no longer have them on our tree; we feel their absence; we gaze at the tree and remember the missing ornaments while enjoying the new ornaments such as grandchildren, nieces and nephews, and new friends. It is impossible to tell when an ornament is going to break; all we can do is carefully wrap and enjoy each breathtaking moment we can share with them while we have them to enjoy. Live life; love life; and live life to the fullest by cherishing each wonderful moment and when you have a chance to say I Love You; Say It!

FEATURED BIBLE VERSE:

John 14:1-4 “Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. And you know the way to where I am going.”

(c) Copyright 2012-2021 Arline Lott Miller. The material here copyrighted, use only by permission. Third party material is sourced to original location if known for reference credit.

WHEN IS GOOD…GOOD ENOUGH?

Today, instead of reinventing food, I thought of how many times in life do we try to reinvent ourselves. I wondered when is good…good enough? As a young lady, I dared to go into industries that were heavily populated with men. I excelled, not due to a lot of support from my male counterparts, but sheer determination. I watched them, I learned from them, I had to go toe to toe with them, I held my own, I succeeded. I said all of that to summarize, did that make me equal or superior? Not really, as I have learned a valuable lesson. We are not in competition with males or females; we are in competition with ourselves.

What do I mean, you ask? Allow me to dig deeper and I think it will become clearer. If I am a runner and I am timing myself. I am competing with the last timed run. If I am a swimmer, I am competing against my best time. It doesn’t matter how fast another swimmer or runner is at this moment, I can only measure if I am swimming or running faster than my last or best time. I am only as good as I can improve my individual efforts. Does that make sense now?

I admired Maya Angelou for her frankness and eloquence.

I love to cook but I also admire several fine chefs but I don’t measure my dishes by their shows. I measure it by my results, my successes, and yes, my failures. I may feel I surpassed their dishes or I may feel like they outdid me by a mile or a squash’s length. This brings me to a thought process to get us to a point When Good Is Good Enough:

  • My Good is Good Enough!
  • I have competed with my own personal achievements and sometimes I win and sometimes I have to rethink my strategy.
  • I am a realist with an optimistic outlook. If I don’t succeed the first time, second or even third time but I try harder each time, I move closer to the finish line and I know eventually I will succeed.
  • I look at life as I see it without so many expectations. Example: I am not a good singer but I love to sing but I realize that I am a limited talent (LOL) and sing when I am not in a public forum but the car is my stadium and I have put on many great performances (my rating, not anyone else’s).
  • I love humor about my limitations and/or lack of talent in areas I have never been a super techie. This however, has not kept me from working with computer techs/programmers. I get what I want programmed and can solve problems and have good visuals. I have a great time telling those tech savvy folks to put it in my language and I will give them my perspective. See My Good is Good Enough. Their Good is Good Enough. Together Our Good is Good Enough.
  • Knowing each person has excellent talents in certain fields is a big chunk of wisdom. Knowing each person has limitations and weak areas is universal wisdom and knowledge. Example: A Rocket Scientist has abilities and knowledge as well as strategic training but probably only a few has been successful in simple feats of life as cooking or changing a light bulb. Give me two remotes to work between them and I show you how irritating that is to me. However, knowing that I have to sometimes do this task, I have learned how to do it. So, by focusing on things I am not comfortable with, My Good is Good Enough.
  • Accepting all of me, good and bad, weak and strong, intensive and scattered thought patterns, organized and out of order thoughts, and kind and even blunt speech are facets of me. My Good is Good Enough.
  • Deciding when and where I can develop even better ideas, practices, habits, and actions is healthy when it comes from within and not because I am measuring myself against someone else. Being All I Can Be But Choosing to Be More is Good and Good is Good Enough.
I am pretty colorful in personality. As a writer, I am happy. In the kitchen, I am happy. On my blog, I am happy. But the happiest I am, is when I am surrounded by my family. I love life, but above all, I love Our God who created me as He decided His Good is Good Enough…Arline Miller

I hope you see that God creates us the way we are for a reason. It may be that we are given handicaps, education opportunities or not, wealth or poverty, calm and soothing personality or a high spirited one, spiritual excellence or a work in progress, and on and on. Each one of us should realize if we do not feel we have to compete or challenge another one’s worth, we are rich within ourselves. Our Good is Good Enough. Thanks for allowing me to share my thoughts with you. Your own comments of personal growth are welcomed.

(C) Copyright 2012-2021 Arline Miller of Sipping Cups of Inspiration with all rights and privileges reserved. Third Party Material if known is sourced to original location and author for credit reference.

ANYONE Can Blog

via ANYONE Can Blog

The post came from a reply by: Christian Mihai Blog Post

With some of my friends looking at the world of blogging, some of them seriously and some pondering the prospect of creating their own blog after guest blogging on my Sipping Cups of Inspiration, I thought this is perfect timing to bring Jordan Peters message, ANYONE Can Blog. This one is worth the read. I loved the reference it has to be a craving. I agree 100%. If you don’t have a true passion to build a blog with loyal and regular readers, do not attempt it. If, however, you have a true voice in whatever direction it follows, and you have the discipline to work at creating interesting, informative, funny, inspiring posts that catch readers’ attention……by all means, blog away. I love the diversity of blogging.

I encourage all aspiring bloggers to dive into Jordan’s blog as he knows the blogging lingo and has given us a lot of food for thought.

Until we blog again,

Arline Miller of Sipping Cups of Inspiration blog

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