Friday, 27 February 2015

8 Life Lessons From My Dog. ~ Amber Howe

Via Amber Howeon Aug 1, 2013


My crooked-eared dog is smarter than me.

Before her second birthday, Cholula’s had the secrets to simple happiness figured out already.
A dog’s life is pretty fabulous, at least in this household.
Cholula’s toy box is overflowing with squeaky, furry things and ragged tennis balls. She prefers to sit shotgun on road trips, or in my lap (she weighs 50 pounds). She freely hogs the best part of the bed. She offers her skills as taste-tester when I’m cooking, under my feet with one ear cocked.
She fully expects to be a part of any adventure we embark upon— and 90% of the time, she is.
Cholula’s part of the family, one of us. We are a pack, and she knows it.
Spoiled? Maybe. Loved? No question.
Half German Shepherd and half Chocolate Lab, Cholula’s the perfect combination of sweet and smart. Sure, she’s just a dog— but I’m convinced that the lessons I’ve learned from her could benefit just about anyone.
1. Every day is a new beginning.
Dogs don’t hold grudges from last year—or even yesterday. Cholula happily forgets when I run out of time for a trip to the dog pond with her. She wakes up ready for adventure, with a wagging tail and boundless energy, even without coffee.
2. Stretching is good for you.
The very first thing Cholula does when she gets out of (our) bed is stretch into a good and deep downward dog move with a little “Wow, that feels good” groan. If she’s been down for a while, she follows that up with a hip flexor thing, sometimes kicking one leg out for the extra stretch. Then, she’s ready for the day and any activity it might hold.
3. Be yourself.
Sure, when she’s done something wrong, Cholula might slink toward us shyly trying to look adorable. But dogs don’t know how to be anything but real. They don’t struggle with self-acceptance. If they are happy, they show it. If they’re annoyed, you know it. Cholula’s many quirks are endearing and make us love her more.
4. Don’t underestimate the power of a nap.
When Cholula is tired, she stops. Instead of trudging through the day groggily, she’ll just lie down and recharge with a power nap. When she wakes up, she’s present and cheerful.
5. Patience pays off.
Cholula will sit still while watching me scurry around the kitchen, wistfully and intently watching as I transfer bacon from the pan to a plate. She’s willing me to drop a piece for her. Or, she’ll perch herself next to my desk chair as I type away with her squeaky fox in her mouth watching me work but, hoping for attention. She knows that if she just sits there long enough, I’ll cave. I always do. Good things come to those who wait.
6. Exercise should be fun.
No matter how many times I throw that tennis ball into the water, Cholula always musters the energy to dive in after it— and comes back to me, panting, wagging, begging for more. Exercise for her isn’t an obligation, it’s a pleasure.
7. Always sneak in one more snuzzle.
We call them sniper kisses and Cholula is a pro. I’m amazed at how important physical attention is to her— she’ll always go in for just one more blissful belly rub, one more sigh-inducing ear massage. She greedily enjoys as much affection as we’ll give and returns the favor.
8. When you love someone, make sure they know it.
She hates when we’re gone and cries with joy when we return. She wags when we enter a room. She follows us around the house, parking herself near us when we land. She lays her ears back sweetly and scoots in for a good morning cuddle the moment we open our eyes. We never question Cholula’s feelings for us.

Love should be obvious and complete.

Not every dog gets the royal treatment like our little princess. But behind those sweet brown eyes there’s a wisdom we can all learn from. Life is about simple joys, healthy activities, occasional treats, and unabashed love.
Wag more. Bark less.

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Powerful 5-Minute Hand Exercise for Instant Energy Boost & Emotional Balance.

Via on Feb 22, 2015
hand, finger, acupuncture

Jin Shin Jyutsu is an ancient Japanese art, philosophy and a powerful alternative health practice.

It harmonizes the life energy in the body, which promotes physical, spiritual, mental and emotional health.
Some of the benefits of Jin Shin Jyutsu are the fact that it:
> Promotes pain relief
> Induces relaxation
> Reduces the effects of stress
> Enhances sleep
> Decreases anxiety
> Increases circulation
> Improves concentration
> Reduces fatigue
> Enhances the immune system
> Improves the condition of skin
> Promotes regeneration
> Improves circulation and breathing
> Detoxifies

According to this tradition, each part of the hand is connected to different emotions or organs:
Thumb: Emotional pain, worry, sadness, grief, depression, anxiety, stress, tension, stomach issues, skin conditions, headaches
Index Finger: Fear, terror, mental confusion, frustration, back ache, gum issues, digestive problems, kidney, bladder
Middle Finger: Anger, rage, resentment, irritability, indecisiveness, relationships, headaches, fatigue, cramps, circulation
Ring Finger: Anxiety, preoccupation, worry, fear of rejection, negativity, skin conditions, digestion, respiratory problems, lungs intestine
Little Finger: Low self-esteem, family, insecurity, nervousness, judgmental, blood pressure, sore throat, bloating, heart, intestine
Palm: Fatigue, depression, despondency, diaphragm

Here’s a simple hand exercise that takes just five minutes:
While concentrating on whatever emotion or ailment in need of attention, hold the finger with the opposite hand wrapping all the fingers and thumb around the particular finger being worked on. Inhale and exhale deeply.
Hold each finger for approximately one to two minutes, and within a short time, a pulsating sensation will be felt. This is perfectly natural.
When working on the palm of the hand for mental calmness, press down with the thumb of the opposite hand, angling towards the middle finger and again hold for one to two minutes. When pressed, the palm of the hand can offer a full body nourishment
Inhale, breathing in calm and peaceful thoughts and feelings and then exhale letting go of any emotional attachment or physical discomfort that you wish to clear.
While letting go of the emotional or physical tension, imagine the energy draining out of the fingers and into the earth.
As energy channels run through the fingers and correlate with specific emotions or organs, the energy will begin to disperse as the exercise is practiced.
For a full body balance and harmonization repeat the exercise on every finger and hold the pressure for a little longer.

Cinnamon Spiced Pecans

Cinnamon Spiced Pecans
Cinnamon Spiced Pecans
  • 4 cups pecans
  • 1 egg white
  • 1 Tablespoon water
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • dash of salt
  1. Beat egg white and water until thick and frothy. fold in pecans until coated.
  2. Combine sugar, cinnamon and salt then pour over pecans. Stir until well coated.
  3. Line a large baking sheet with aluminum foil. Spread nuts out in a single layer on baking tray.
  4. Bake in a preheated 300 degree oven for 40 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes (to keep them from sticking.)
  5. Remove from oven and loosen any stuck pecan with a spatula. Let nuts cool completely before storing in an airtight container.
RIP Leonard Nimoy.

“The miracle is this—the more we share, the more we have.” ~ Leonard Nimoy

Leonard Nimoy, who enchanted generations of audiences with his depiction of Star Trek’s human-alien philosopher and first officer Mr Spock, has died at his home in Los Angeles. He was 83.
The actor died on Friday morning of end-stage chronic obstructive pulmonary disease in Bel-Air, his wife, Susan Bay Nimoy, told the New York Times. He had been hospitalised at UCLA medical center with breathing difficulties days earlier.
Nimoy’s last tweet, sent on Monday, suggested he knew the end was near: “A life is like a garden. Perfect moments can be had, but not preserved, except in memory. LLAP.”
“Live long and prosper” was the Vulcan salutation which he made famous as Spock, and which he and fans carried into real life. Tributes to the actor, director, photographer, writer, poet, musician and teacher agreed he had indeed done so.
“I loved him like a brother,” William Shatner, who starred alongside him as Captain Kirk, wrote on Facebook. “We will all miss his humor, his talent, and his capacity to love.”
George Takei, who played Sulu, said the world had lost a great man. “And I lost a great friend. We return you now to the stars, Leonard. You taught us to ‘Live Long And Prosper,’ and you indeed did, friend. I shall miss you in so many, many ways.”
Nimoy announced last year that he was battling chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and attributed it to smoking, even though he gave up the habit long ago. With typical humour he tweeted last week: “I quit smoking 30 yrs ago. Not soon enough. I have COPD. Grandpa says, quit now!! LLAP.”

He enjoyed an enduring and eclectic career in the arts and in film behind the camera but it was as the pointy-eared, relentlessly logical sidekick to William Shatner’s Captain Kirk that Nimoy will be best remembered.

Gene Roddenberry, the creator of Star Trek, called Spock its “conscience”, a quizzical, alien and yet also humane moral sense which pervaded the original NBC series as well as subsequent big-screen outings, most recently in the rebooted films directed by JJ Abrams.
The actor, born in Boston to Ukrainian immigrants and Orthodox Jews, embraced the figure of the lone alien on the bridge of the Starship Enterprise, exploring the universe with more emotional, fully human characters.
His first autobiography, I Am Not Spock, published in 1977, said that as the Vulcan he found the best of both worlds, gaining public approval while still being able to play an other-worldly character. He published another biography, I Am Spock, in 1995.
“To this day, I sense Vulcan speech patterns, Vulcan social attitudes and even Vulcan patterns of logic and emotional suppression in my behavior,” Nimoy noted. It was not a complaint. “Given the choice, if I had to be someone else, I would be Spock.”

Thursday, 26 February 2015

Hemlock and After by Angus Wilson

Hemlock and After
Angus WIlson
This is a unique reading list - these books were all written by librarians and most of them were recommended to us by librarians. If any profession is well qualified to write books then librarians truly fit the bill.
Librarians are loyal customers of AbeBooks and we tend to listen when they speak. But it was interesting to see so many librarians recommend Casanova's autobiography - were they trying to tell us something? This famous Italian adventurer and lover was a librarian in the household of the German nobleman Count Waldstein.
The authors on this list range from the top dogs at the Library of Congress to folks who have worked at the national libraries of Argentina, France and Sweden, and people who have checked books in and out at public and school libraries.
We decided to exclude Chairman Mao and his Little Red Book. This one-time librarian at Peking University is perhaps the most widely read of all librarians who wrote but it was under extraordinary circumstances (although it is now rumoured that the book was ghostwritten). Our featured book (pictured at left) is Hemlock and After by Angus Wilson, illustrated by Ronald Searle, and was a bestseller in 1952. Wilson was a librarian in the British museum.

Librarian Lit

Star Man’s Son by Alice Mary (Andre) Norton
Star Man's Son 
by Alice Mary (Andre) Norton

A post-apocalyptic tale from 1952 – Norton was a librarian in Cleveland and the Library of Congress.
Books in My Baggage: Adventures in Reading and Collecting by Lawrence Clark Powell
Books in My Baggage
by Lawrence Clark Powell

Clark Powell was a librarian at UCLA and the William Andrews Clark Memorial Library.
Jill by Philip Larkin
by Philip Larkin

Larkin was a librarian at the University of Hull. Jill is a novel about life in Oxford during WWII.
A Winter’s Love by Madeleine L’Engle
A Winter's Love
by Madeleine L'Engle

L'Engle was a volunteer librarian in New York.  A scarce novel about a troubled marriage.
Collected Poems by Marianne Moore
Collected Poems
by Marianne Moore

This modernist poet, noted for her wit, worked in the New York Public Library in the 1920s.
Higher Power of Lucky by Susan Patron
Higher Power of Lucky
by Susan Patron

Patron won a Newbery Award for this children's book. She worked at the Los Angeles Public Library.
The Feud by Thomas Berger
The Feud
by Thomas Berger

A novel about conflict in small town 1930s America - Berger was a librarian and journalist.
The Wild Old Wicked Man and Other Poems by Archibald MacLeish
The Wild Old Wicked Man and Other Poems
by Archibald MacLeish

MacLeish was Librarian of Congress from 1939 to 1944.  He was also a playwright, journalist, lawyer and statesman.
The Giant’s House by Elizabeth McCracken
The Giant's House
by Elizabeth McCracken

Written by a former public librarian, this novel (about a librarian) was a National Book Award nominee.
The Mouse and the Motorcycle by Beverly Cleary
The Mouse and the Motorcycle
by Beverly Cleary

Cleary worked as a children's librarian in Yakima, Washington, before writing many children's books.
Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee by Dee Brown
Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee
by Dee Brown

An agriculture librarian at the University of Illinois, Brown's 1971 book remains a non-fiction classic.
Ill Starred Captains: Flinders and Baudin by Anthony J. Brown
Ill Starred Captains: Flinders and Baudin 
by Anthony J. Brown

Brown was a former librarian from the State Library of South Australia.
Doctor Brodie’s Report by Jorge Luis Borges
Doctor Brodie's Report
by Jorge Luis Borges

Borges was a director of Argentina's National Public Library - this is a collection of 11 short stories.
Miss Julie by August Strindberg
Miss Julie 
by August Strindberg

Strindberg worked for eight years as an assistant librarian at Sweden's National Library.
Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant by Anne Tyler
Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant
by Anne Tyler

This novel was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. Tyler is a former librarian and bibliographer.
Out Stealing Horses by Per Petterson
Out Stealing Horses 
by Per Petterson

An ex-librarian AND a bookseller, Petterson's novel was one of the NY Times' books of the year in 2007.
Story of the Eye by Georges Bataille
Story of the Eye
by Georges Bataille

Histoire de L'Oeil is a controversial novel from 1928. Bataille was an archivist at France's National Library.
Vertical Poetry by Roberto Juarroz
Vertical Poetry 
by Roberto Juarroz

Juarroz was head of Bibliotechnology & Informational Science at the University of Buenos Aires
Bachelor Brothers' Bed & Breakfast by Bill Richardson
Bachelor Brothers' Bed & Breakfast
by Bill Richardson

This Canadian is a Master of Library Science. This book won the Stephen Leacock Medal for Humour.
The Legate’s Daughter by Wallace Breem
The Legate's Daughter
by Wallace Breem

Breem was a legal manuscripts librarian in London – this novel is Roman kidnap adventure.
Good Masters! Sweet Ladies! Voices from a Medieval Village by Laura Amy Schlitz
Good Masters! Sweet Ladies! Voices from a Medieval Village
by Laura Amy Schlitz

A novel set in medieval England in1255. Schiltz is a school librarian in Maryland.
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer & Annie Barrows
The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society 
by Mary Ann Shaffer & Annie Barrows

A true bookperson, Shaffer worked as a librarian but also in bookselling and publishing.
The Story of My Life by Giacomo Casanova
The Story of My Life
by Giacomo Casanova

This great lover was a librarian in Count Waldstein's household where he wrote his autobiography.
The Image or What Happened to the American Dream by Daniel J Boorstin
The Image or What Happened to the American Dream 
by Daniel J Boorstin

Boorstin was the 12th Librarian at the Library of Congress from 1975 to 1987.
Chewing the Scenery by Davina Elliott
Chewing the Scenery
by Davina Elliott

Davina worked for London's Westminster Libraries and still volunteers at St James's Library.