Saturday, September 10, 2016


1. I could do so much more if I only had minions.
2. Math--The only subject that counts.
3. I don't have a short attention span, I just...oh look, a squirrel.
4. The Government is NOT your Baby's Daddy.
5. Sarcasm--Because beating the crap out of people is illegal.
6. Old Sailors never die...they just get a little dinghy.
7. Super Mom, Super Wife, Super TIRED!
8. I'm the wife said I could be.
9. If I agreed with you, we'd both be wrong.
10. I'm not a Doctor, but I'll take a look.
11. Anything unrelated to Elephants is...irrelephant!

Courtesy is Contagious...Pass it on!

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Thursday, September 08, 2016

How to Respond to Negative People without being Negative...

“Don’t let the behavior of others destroy your inner peace.” ~Tenzin Gyatso, 14th Dalai Lama
A woman with whom I once worked seemed to talk non-stop and loudly, interrupt incessantly, gossip about whomever wasn’t in the room, constantly complain, and live quite happily in martyrdom.
It seemed nothing and no one escaped her negative spin. She was good at it. She could twist the happiest moment of someone’s life into a horrendous mistake. She seemed to enjoy it too.
At first, my judgmental mind thought her behavior to be quite inappropriate. I simply didn’t approve of it. But after weeks of working with her, the thought of spending even one more moment in her presence sent me into, well, her world.
Her negativity was infectious. More and more, I found myself thinking about her negativity, talking with others about her negativity, and complaining about her constant negativity.
For a while, though, I listened to her whenever she followed me into the lunchroom or the ladies’ room. I didn’t know what to say, or do, or even think. I was held captive.
I’d excuse myself from the one-sided chit-chat as soon as possible, wanting to someday be honest enough to kindly tell her that I choose not to listen to gossip. Instead, I chose avoidance. I avoided eye contact, and any and all contact. Whenever I saw her coming, I’d get going and make for a quick getaway. I worked hard at it, too.
And it was exhausting because whether I listened to her or not, or even managed to momentarily escape her altogether, I was still held captive by her negativity.
I interacted with her only a handful of times a month, but her negative presence lingered on in my life. And I didn’t like it. But what I didn’t like didn’t really matter—I wanted to look inside myself to come up with a way to escape, not just avoid, a way to just let go of the hold this negativity had on me.
And when I did look within, I saw that I was the one exaggerating the negative. I chose to keep negativity within me even when she wasn’t around. This negativity was mine. So, as with most unpleasant things in life, I decided to own up and step up, to take responsibility for my own negativity. Instead of blaming, avoiding, and resisting the truth, I would accept it. And, somehow, I would ease up on exaggerating the negative.
I welcomed the situation as it was, opening up to the possibilities for change within me and around her.
I knew all about the current emotional fitness trends telling us to surround ourselves with only happy, positive people and to avoid negative people—the us versus them strategy for better emotional health. I saw this as disconnecting, though. We all have times when we accentuate the positive and moments when we exaggerate the negative. We are all connected in this.
Instead of attempting to continue to disconnect, to avoid being with negativity, while just denying my own, I wanted to reconnect, with compassion and kindness toward both of us.
She and I shared in this negativity together. And once I made the connection, and saw our connection, a few simple, and maybe a little more mindful thoughts began to enter my mind, and my heart. This reconnection would be made possible through love.
And these simple little, love-induced thoughts spoke up something like this:
  • Patience can sit with negativity without becoming negative, rushing off to escape, or desiring to disconnect from those who choose negativity. Patience calms me.
  • And while I’m calm, I can change the way I see the situation. I can see the truth. Instead of focusing on what I don’t like, I can see positive solutions. I can deal with it.
  • I can try to see the situation from the other person’s perspective. Why might this woman choose or maybe need to speak with such negativity? I can be compassionate.
  • Why does what this woman chooses or needs to say cause me to feel irritated, angry, or resentful? I have allowed her words to push my negativity buttons. I can’t blame her.
  • She doesn’t even know my buttons exist. She’s only concerned with her own needs. I’ve never even told her how much her negativity bothers me. I see what truly is.
  • I see that we are both unhappy with our shared negativity. People who complain and gossip and sacrifice themselves for others aren’t happy. I can help to free us both.
  • I will only help. I will do no harm. I have compassion for us both. I will show kindness toward both of us. I will cultivate love for us, too. I choose to reconnect.
  • I will start with me and then share love with others. May I be well and happy. May our family be well and happy. May she be well and happy. I choose love.
And whenever I saw her, I greeted her with a kind smile. I sometimes listened to her stories, excusing myself whenever her words became unkind, much the same as I had done before. But I noticed the negativity no longer lingered within me. It disappeared as soon as I began choosing love again. I was freed. And I was happier. And compassion, kindness, and love had made me so.
My desire was not to speak my mind in an attempt to change hers, to change her apparent need in choosing negative words. I did hope she might free herself from negativity and liberate herself by choosing positivity instead. Our reconnection was complete, quite unlimited, too, and it gave me hope that happiness could be ours, shared through our connection.
I continue to cultivate this loving connection, being compassionate and kind whenever people, myself included, choose to speak negative words, for we all do from time to time. We are positively connected in this negativity thing, and everything else. And compassion, kindness, and love happily connect us all.
Source :


VIDEO: This short interview with the 1990s Ronald McDonald is absolutely brilliant

Did you know only a handful of men have ever played fast food salesman and arguable childhood icon Ronald McDonald? Just nine have been the Big Clown himself - including Joe Maggard.

Maggard played Ronald between 1995 and 2007, before being replaced by the current actor. The Guardian produced this six-minute web documentary on Maggard's life after the make-up, and it's fascinating.

"The clown's ready to go," Maggard starts off with. "Like any superhero, he's ready at a moment's notice — Ronald can appear."
"Joe's present ... but I'm Ronald," he tells the film crew after he changes. "It's better as a performer when you can distinguish your character from yourself ... it's called method."
It's been eight years since Maggard was the official Ronald, but he insists he's "still serving" as an embodiment of the brand.
But he's not beyond a bit of grumbling - particularly about kids' habit to stamp on his feet. "I'd give the little bastards a rap on the cheek," he recalls.
Facinating stuff - and well worth a few minutes of your day.

Wednesday, September 07, 2016

Lifelong Effects of Childhood Obesity...Definitely NOT LOVIN' IT!

Lifelong Effects of Childhood Obesity
Thursday, Dec. 06, 2007 By TIFFANY SHARPLES Judah Passow / Doctor, firefighter, astronaut. These are the things kids want to be when they grow up. Obese 35-year-old with type 2 diabetes and coronary heart disease? Not exactly. But according to two studies published this week in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM), that's where our children are headed, unless monumental — and immediate — changes are made in the effort to curb childhood obesity.

The current Journal of the American Medical Association suggests that physicians would be better doc...

"This is a public health problem, and public health problems require policies that actually reinforce positive choices," says Dr. Kirsten Bibbins-Domingo of the University of California, San Francisco, a principle author of one of the NEJM studies. "We know that healthy nutritious foods and physical activity are really the keys to preventing excessive weight gain in childhood. We need a concerted effort at the federal, state and local level — across government and industry — to ensure that those things are available to our children."

Those efforts are already overdue, according to the findings of Bibbins-Domingo's report. Extrapolating from childhood obesity rates from 2000, she and colleagues at San Francisco General Hospital and Columbia University, estimate that by 2020, as many as 44% of American women and 37% of men, at age 35, will be obese — obese and, therefore, ill. By 2020, "we found, not unexpectedly, that the prevalence of heart disease will rise by as much as 16%, and heart disease deaths by as much as 19% between the ages of 35 and 50 years," says Bibbins-Domingo. Estimating conservatively, that figure translates to about 100,000 additional heart disease deaths among 35-to-50-year-olds solely due to obesity. Realistically, says Bibbins-Domingo, the number is probably closer to 300,000.

The second, larger study in the NEJM came to similar conclusions. By comparing the childhood medical records and adulthood hospital records of 276,835 Danish citizens born between 1930 and 1976, researchers found a distinct correlation between higher childhood body mass index (BMI) — the ratio between height and weight that is the standard for defining obesity — and a greater risk of future heart disease and heart disease–related death. According to the authors, it is the first study to conclusively link excess weight in childhood and health problems later on. What's more, the data showed that the correlation is linear and progressive: as kids' BMI increased, their risk of adult heart disease rose alongside it. "We anticipated finding a threshold, or a cut point at which the risk dramatically increased or remained stable, so when it worked out to be such a proportional increase we were very surprised," says co-author Dr. Jennifer Baker, of the Center for Health and Society at the Institute of Preventive Medicine in Copenhagen. "The association we found is very straightforward, the higher a child's BMI in childhood from the ages of 7 to 13, the greater the risk of heart disease in adulthood. They increase in proportion to each other."

The risk increased not only with weight, but also with age. At seven, a girl of average height and weight (about 4 ft., 52 lbs.) had a 4.6 % chance of developing coronary heart disease in adulthood; the risk for that same girl, 10 lbs. heavier, jumped to 4.8%. At age 13, a healthy girl (5 ft. 2 in., 101 lbs.) had a 4.6% chance of developing heart disease as an adult, but at a higher BMI — the equivalent of adding about 28 lbs. — her risk of heart disease spiked to 5.7%. That amounts to an overall 24% higher risk of developing the disease.

In boys, the study found, the risks were even greater. At age seven, a healthy boy (about 4', 52 lbs.) had an 11.7% chance of later developing heart disease; with 8.6 lbs. of additional padding, that risk jumped to 12.9%. And at age 13, heavy boys — those with 24.7 lbs. of extra weight — showed a whopping 33% increased risk of developed coronary disease over their slimmer peers.

By U.S. standards — where some nine million children are overweight — the children included in the Danish paper would have barely made the cutoff for "overweight." Merely being chubby it seems — let alone obese — can be a serious health risk. "Our study shows that even a few excess pounds or kilograms of weight can damage future health," Baker says.

Baker did not have access to her subjects' adult weights, so she could not confirm whether their heart-disease risk was influenced by adult obesity, but her study did show that those risks weren't nearly as high in kids who started out heavy at age 7, but lost the weight by 13. "If we could intervene in that period to help these children attain and maintain an appropriate weight for their age, we really could significantly reduce the risk of heart disease in the future," says Baker.

Better yet, experts say, prevent that risk from ever climbing: keep children fit from the beginning. "If you're trying to prevent this problem, then you want to establish good food habits early. You want to keep children away from the food industry messages to eat unhealthy food. It could be that earlier years will be the best time to begin that education," says Dr. Kelly Brownell, director of the Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity at Yale.

As with most health problems, the key is prevention, and the effort cannot be left up to the individual — parents ought to be the first to take responsibility. Dismissing childhood obesity as baby fat or relying on a kid's will power is simply not a solution, says Baker. "We cannot consider it just to be a cosmetic problem. It's a health risk problem," she says. "We can no longer sit back and wait, and think a child may grow out of [it]."