I couldn’t agree more that the happiness part of the vacation happens when you start planning or anticipating a great time ahead, aren’t you? Summer vacation had become a routine for my family. The journey can be heaven, or it can be hell. Nevertheless, few things in life that will impact you as much as traveling will. It’s better to travel thousands of miles than to read thousands of books. On the other hands, travel miles but learning nothing, then you are just a postman (proverb). The adventure is out there. How will traveling impact your life?
1. You Always Have Funny Stories To Tell
Riding the hot air balloon to take a glance at the stunning view of the magnificent landscape in Luxor is never short of amazing. My hubby, John, asked the pilot:
John: "Why did all those hot air balloons not fly in the same directions?"
Pilot: "It is normal. The balloon flight path is depending on the wind condition and pilot control."
John: "Had accident occurred before?"
Pilot: "Yes, sometimes accident did happen. I think this time is ok."
John: "How long have you been working for piloting the balloon?"
Pilot: "Oh, me? I learned the skill of piloting and practice 5 times. And then I can do the job.”
John: "Do you need to get a license to do this job?"
Pilot: "Yes, I used three hours and then I was able to get the license."
The balloon was not moving stable and the pilot seemed unsure where the balloon could be landed. All passengers grasped the basket tightly and prayed for a safe landing. The balloon was finally landing on the sugar cane field which was not in the planned location. They stayed on the ground for half hour waiting for the crew to collect the passengers and equipment.
And there were many more stories from the traveling experience...
2. Who is your companion?
Ever wonder you would feel boring on a cruise? If you are traveling by plane, you only have to endure for hours. And the cruise trip is talking about staying on a ship for weeks. The key is who is your companion. Last year I asked my mom to join our family vacation trip on a cruise. When she was young, she never had the time and money to travel. I couldn’t agree more to believe that “the greatest tragedy of the family is the unlived lives of the parents” (Carl Gustav Jung). I enjoy the time to talk about life with my mom on the ship deck at 2 am.
3. Leave yourself some times to be silly, to laugh
Every trip is meant to be an Easter egg-riddled journey for the kids. The children are having so much fun when they are playing around. A child can laugh 500 times per day! Ever wonder why the children laugh much more often than adults do. We don't need to be serious all the time, leave ourselves some time for pure silliness, like a child. Maybe everyone has a child heart, whether you are six or sixty years old.
4. Keep a pen and a handy notebook
Every trip is once in a lifetime journey. You may have a chance to visit the same place in some other days. But what you feel the moment right now would never be the same in another time on another day. I have a habit to keep a pen and a notebook (hard copy) handy so that the best of those feeling made it to paper all the way along the journey. You would feel more in control and is missing less.
5. Selfie is not that important
People say that if you don’t like selfie, it’s a sign that you’re old. It is common for the kids to get hooked to post the stunning photos on Facebook to win thousands of “like” as if they had made a remarkable achievement. Well, yes, I saw numerous spectacular selfies were impressive, but the cost is high if they persuade this interest to the stupid behavior. During my summer vacation in two years before, I had joined a boating activity with the kids. A young girl tourist enjoyed selfie all the time focus on the phone camera rather than the dangerous environment. BAM! She had overturned, her head crashed with hard stone, dreadful scarp face was the result.
6. Amazing exotic food
Traveling allows you to understand the other culture and make new friends. What is the topic you would like to talk with a stranger? I love to talk about eating and food. Exotic food culture is fascinating:
7. Switch off from work
You were not able to enjoy the vacation if your hubby did not remember to switch off from his office work. I told him what was the meaning of the family vacation if he spent most of his time checking and replying emails. Many people get an incomplete concept to think that if you want a career, you have to sacrifice your family life. If you want a family life, you have to sacrifice your career. How come your time is an accounting of minutes? Your time is a measure of commitment, concern, and efficiency. Not everything is a zero-sum game. Most people you encounter are just visitors. The family is for life.
8. Get Over Anxiety
For some people, they are not able to get over the anxiety from non-refundable fares, tight schedule, security issues, natural disasters or any other inconvenience things that may happen on vacation. It did happen when you asked a cab driver for the places of best theaters or restaurants, but he brought you to the crappy place that is far from your expectation. It's not a big deal. Vacations are meant for enjoyment. We should spend the time to unwind and relax. It is true "there is no such thing as bad weather, only inappropriate clothing" (Alfred Wainwright).
Don’t talk about going to Borneo. Book a ticket, get a visa, pack a bag, and it just happens (Alex Garland)
Are you settling for less than you deserve? How settled are you? How will you describe yourself?
Unmoved as a rock
A vase rarely moves an inch; or
A bird in a cage; or
A lamb ties a belt around its neck; or
A swallow is flying to a faraway destination occasionally stop over for a rest; or
A fly is flying aimlessly to nowhere.
What if you are an artist to build the rock balancing work.
It seems like impossible and unlikely. You get it. It’s difficult. Not impossible.
Have you ever asked your parents how much they had sacrificed for the family? What were the opportunities that they had given up? What was the cost? Are you willing to make the same sacrifice? Why? What did they say? How about you?
You aren’t the same as your parents were 20 years ago. You have new experiences and lessons learned. And society isn’t the same either. You like to find new ways to balance and blend career and family. You can do it.
1. Essential vs. Useful
Not everything has equal importance. If you don’t prioritize your life, someone else will. It takes discipline and knowing your own priorities. Your boss may demand extra long hours; your co-workers may ask you to solve their problems, or your friend may ask you to buy them something. Couldn’t agree more for the hardest thing to say is "no" because you want to be helpful, to be nice and to get approval from peers and boss. However, you need to say no to create more time to focus on your current priorities.
When someone comes to distract your current priority, you've to ask yourself:
Is it important?
Is it important for me?
Is it important now?
Essential and Useful is not the same.
Great performance at work is useful, approval from the boss is useful, but family relationship is essential. The family should come before business, isn’t it?
2. It’s not Zero-Sum Game
When you talk about work-life balance. It is as if you are asking can a woman half pregnant? If you spend more money on housing, you will have to spend less on your car. Many people view their lives in much the same way that every additional expense has to be matched with an equal reduction in spending. If they want career, they have to sacrifice family time. If they want a family life, they have to sacrifice their career. This concept is misleading.
The quantity of hours spent working or thinking about work, or hours spent with our families, does not predict achievement or life satisfaction. Instead, the quality of those hours- how stressful or relaxing they are – is a much more crucial in producing a satisfying family life and career. Your time is a measure of commitment, concern, and efficiency, not just quantity. You manage to do what you are doing when you are doing it.
3. You Always Have a Choice
Feeling guilty about working, feeling guilty about not working and contributing to the family, feeling guilty about not making enough homemade dinners, feeling guilty about enjoying 'me time'? The hard thing is that sometimes we forget we have a choice. We feel like the choice had already been made for us. Things will be what they will be.
If you’re a career mum and the nine-to-five, Monday to Friday grind is not worked for you. You may talk to your boss about flexible schedule; or reduce your hours to a part-time job.
Unless you’re in prison, you don’t have to do anything. You choose to do things. You might ask, “What difference does that make? I have to do the laundry, or I choose to do the laundry. Either way it has to be done.” It’s the difference between taking an action because something of value is at stake for you and taking an action because you are being forced to do so. Doing the laundry is a choice you make because you value being clean. You do the laundry for your family members because you love them. Is anyone forcing you to do the laundry? No. When you see all the options you have, you can begin to appreciate the choices you make.
I love spending some hours on the sidewalk. You will have so much fun to watch the little bugs crawl in and out of the pebbles. Someone walks a weird skinny dog reckoning with a kindness smile. The kids are climbing the tree fifty times a day, scrabbling up trunks fearlessly into the branches, towards the tip-top, through a tangle of green limbs that swaddled them like a living hammock. Or they may lie in the grass to feel the blades tickle their necks. You feel the sunshine hit your face with a cool breeze. Take deep breaths with full inhalation and exhalation. Tell your body and your mind that everything is ok.
1. Gather leaves, flowers, or seeds that mean something to your family
The fruit of the native pine is a small cone with the seed ripening in autumn. The cypress cone has a clean woody energizing aroma. I love to collect the cypress and use them to fill up the pillow for producing the comfort effect and stimulate feelings of joy and happiness. Aromatherapists believe it has the calming effect during times of emotional stress.
2. You never really looked at them when you were alive
How lucky we are to be alive right now. Live in the present to look around the beautiful thing is happening around us. Every morning, walk a dog, I look around to take a photo of a flower and share it on Facebook. It’s so sad to allow yourself to live too many empty yesterdays and realize it’s too late to chasing daylight.
3. D.I.Y your miniature fairy tale garden
Ever feel that your eyes strain from too much screen time? I like to spend the time to make my miniature garden instead. It was a chance to spend time every day, without any worries and concerns, doing something interesting. What sort of story I’m going to create on today? How about little teddy meets the lazy cat in the fairy garden? D.I.Y the miniature garden is a great way to build the peaceful concentration by discarding impatience and irritation. You feel better about yourself to express your creativity.
When to worry the child development?
The mobile device such as the smartphone and the tablet are the creamy filling that distracts us from the substance of our lives. The kids spend so much time on web browsing, online games, and social media that it inhibits their ability to carry on a face to face conversation. TV and the electronic devices rob our time and never gives it back. As a harassed parent, it is easier to use the gadgets as bribery or enticements for making the kids busy and quiet. It works well to..
You know what, Steve Jobs, who was the one invented these devices to revolutionize the human behavior, prohibited his kids to use the computer or smartphone at night or during the weekend. He allowed his kids used the computer or tablet for doing school works only. Why you would allow the mobile device to rob the time for the conversation with your kids, reading books together and telling stories.
I suggest set the family rule:
The kids would get so much fun to fire a bow and arrow,
climbing a tree,
riding a dirt bike,
playing cowboy and Indian with just a stick and leaf,
breathing heavy, feel the wind whipping against their face...
And forget about the electronic games.
It’s not funny if you’re always struggling with money. How much money can I earn? How big is my bank account? Money is the cause of my anxiety. Why? If you’re broke, you lost your house, lose your family, lost your self-respect, and lost everything. You don’t want to get broke. Why I always feel I’m on the verge of bankruptcy? What wrong with me?
1. Excessive buying from the one-click shopping universe
Whenever I tried to de-clutter my house, I was surprised why I had bought so many useless things I don’t need.Is it because online shopping has never been easier? Or maybe merely it is an easy way to release the negative emotion.
2. Chase after full when you have enough
It’s easy to confuse our desire for the feeling of full with the feeling of enough. “The only satisfying state is full. In fact, full doesn’t last and full isn’t desirable.Enough doesn’t feel like full, but that’s ok…The advertisers, marketers, and the media make us believe that buying the expensive products is a way to uplift our status and taste.Social media is further amplified the wonderful life from our peers make us feel like we are in the state of not enough” (Seth Godin)
Well yes, if today is your last day on earth, ask yourself what are the things that you are proud of or what are the things that make you happy?Is your car on the list?Is the size of your home on the list? The building blocks of happiness are our relationship with friends and family, the contribution we have made to other people lives, and the celebrated events in our life. We don’t need to chase after the full of the luxury goods. When some people rush through the gate to the dream town, there is some other people race through the gate to get out from that town at the same time. Why? They feel like their current state is not enough, they regard good thing can only happen on the other side of the gate.
3. Educate the concept of money
I have not much concept about money. My parents rarely taught me the financial education as if money is a scary evil thing. Well, yes, we are pleasure seekers. We get hooked on the pleasure comes from caffeine, tobacco, entertainment or premium stuff. Pleasure is short-term, addictive and selfish. It works on dopamine. When the debt is easier than ever to go into, why even consider sacrificing the pleasure for the long-haul benefits? The long haul will take care itself, isn’t it? OMG! It doesn’t. We have to define our context to prioritize our spending. Do you spend the money on the stuff that can build up your assets or pay for the liability? An asset is something you can be owned to produce value matter to you in the long run. For instances, buy a home is building your asset, pay the monthly rental is a liability. Spend the money on studying a training course for mastering a useful skill is building your asset. Buy expensive Hermes bag to believe that someone is watching you is a liability.
When you go into spending money on the expensive thing, ask yourself the following three questions (borrow the idea from Warren Buffet):
Stop and smell the rose. Made better money decision on the truly important things.
My day is overwhelmed by the endless chores. Cleaning the kitchen and the living room, mowing the yard, and sixteen other things are waiting for me to do. OMG! The kids still leave the toys lying around on the floor without tidying them up. Endless chores and sleepless night make me fatigue. What can I do to regain my energy?
What do the fatigue people eat? They skip breakfast
What do the non-fatigue people eat? They eat breakfast
Rule#1. Eat the breakfast
Eating a healthy breakfast is a great way to start your day, isn’t it? Date back to 10 years before, I developed a habit of skipping breakfast. I can’t remember why. Maybe I want to spare few more minutes to sleep, or the on-diet reason. Breakfast is the most important meal of a day. Our stomach loves to work in order. We feed our empty stomach to kick start the day. Avoiding to eat something trigger your stomach such as the cold beverage and spicy. Our stomach hates stimulating and eating disorder. Ok, ok, neither did I get slim nor stay in bed for few more minutes could reduce the painful feeling to get up. Our stomach loves to perform the regular work to keep it functioning. Skipping breakfast disturb our biological time clock. We make our body delay the working mode from the early morning to a few hours later. And follow the vicious cycle of late sleep and feel tired in the next morning, again.
Rule#2. Avoid Sugar
We all love sugar. Add sugar makes food taste better. When we get up in the early morning, our brain as the most energy demanding organ wants the sugar to gear up its functions. Glucose is being pushed up into the blood. Insulin helps to make the balance keeping the blood sugar level from getting too high. Your body reaction makes you feel fatigue and stressful.
Where is the sugar trap in your breakfast?
Sugar trap#1. The bread
I’m a bread lover. A perfect breakfast should have a loaf of soft sourdough, isn’t it? Most of the water mouthing sweet soft and fluffy bread made from the bakery shop is rich in sugar. The loaves look so great but..
I would like to pick the bread made from natural yeast embraces with the aromas of wheat and fruits, tastes great, and healthier. Sweet soft bread gets too much sugar. Your healthier choice is eating the dark rye bread or the sprout grain bread.
Sugar trap#2. Jam on the toast
I see some people usually spread too much butter or thick jam on the bread. If you really do like jam, try to pick the homemade jam.
Sugar trap#3. Coffee with Milk and Sugar
Breakfast or no breakfast, coffee, please. Some people love to add milk and sugar to balance the bitter taste from the coffee. Caffeinate has the stimulation effect which can fuel you up for 2 to 5 hours. After then, you feel tired and drink another cup of coffee again. The addiction to drink numerous cups of coffee throughout a day make you can’t sleep at night and feel tired in the next morning. The vicious cycle makes you consume a surprisingly high level of sugar result in gaining weight. Well, yes, water is boring, I love sipping a cup of coffee with the breakfast. Drink the black coffee is more appealing to me which is comparatively healthier and consume the best original coffee taste.
Rule#3. Mindful Ingredients
Nutritionists suggest people should consume high protein for breakfast to kick start the day. Pair protein with non- starchy vegetables is the way to go:
Smart tips from the farmers for choosing the eggs:
We heard people say that egg yolk is related to cholesterol that causes the development of cardiovascular disease. It sounds scary, isn’t it? Thanks to the modern medical studies help the eggs get the redress from the misconception that had discriminated them with healthy food. Saturated animal fat or cholesterol in food has nothing to do with the blood cholesterol levels to cause cardiovascular illness. It’s the industrial product to produce the saturated fat that is rich in calorie but poor in nutrition value. Avoid the processed meat such as bacon, ham, and sausage that are contained harmful chemical compounds to associate with chronic diseases.
Rule# 4 Food Combining
Should you eat the protein with carbs? Carbs are digested in an alkaline environment while proteins are digested in an acidic environment. If you eat these foods in combination, they will “cancel each other out” and not be digested. Some nutrition experts regard this notion as urban legend without scientific support. Mixed meals are the way to go. This does slow down digestion, in a good way, because it helps you stay satisfied longer after eating. MEC diet is mainly eating 120g cheese, 200g steam or grilled meat and 3 eggs per day. You can lose weight on high protein diet. Your breakfast should include vegetables without missing out the dietary fiber. For breakfast, the combination is consumed protein plus vegetables without carbs, or plus low carbs.
My Breakfast Recipe
Parents are so critical to developing the blueprint for shaping the character of the child especially during his/her age between 0-6 years old. How did my mom praise me? How did my mom blame me? Did my parent love me? Did they accept me? I prefer dad over mom? Did I get a better relationship with mom or with dad? I and mom alike or I am alike with dad? The well-meaning parents are trying to do all the right things to raise their children for the desired outcome. When you want the child can embrace the attributes of confidence, intelligent, and kindness, why he turns out to be coward and mediocre?
1. Fear of You
Does your child anti-parent? Or over-obedience? Does your child do thing upon your command? You as a parent is performing an authority role, aren't you? You know your child will not challenge you. Ever wonder the child lies to you because you are over-reacting to his mistake? The child gets used to following the authority order. The narrative is that if I follow my mom order, to do what she tells me to do, cope with her expectation, stand by her side, then she will love me, or at least get out of trouble. You drive your kid to the tendency of believing authority. For them, comply is more important than asking questions. What if I fail? What would my parent think?
it is my turn or I wait for someone pick me?
use my own judgment or I do what other people say?
show my work or because someone say so?
2. Fear Of Unknown
The schooling system tries to train the kids for the sake of remembering all the answers, not finding the reasons behind. All they need to do is memorizing the answers, do the tests, take the exams, get the marks, moved on to the upper grade in certainty. The school tries to tell you to learn and then test. The world is operated in the reverse way, test and then learn. When the kids get used to certainty, they are the security seeker. They will lose a lot of fun to explore the world and explore themselves.
How to turn zero to one?
How can you build something from nothing?
It is the same last time vs. this may not work.
3. Fear Of Comparing
The schooling system makes the children believe that the world is operated by ranking, zero-sum game and compete over the others. As a parent, have you ever try to compare your kids with other children or compare the kids to their siblings? Some parents would show bias favoring one child over another. I know a girl who hates her younger sister severely because she thinks her mom loves her sister a lot more. She regards her self-value is whether she can do better than her sister. Comparing is hazardous to the personal development for the tendency to judge the value merely by compare and contrast. And the child tends to...
4. Fear Of Making Mistakes
You shouldn’t be so quick to jump in to protect the child as if you are trying to solve all their problems. Ever wonder you make your child coward because you overprotect him. Or conversely, you blame the child in public when they do something wrong. You bring the message to the kid something like being careful, safety first, don’t trust the stranger, don’t take the risk. The kid tends to focus on avoid pain rather than think about the possible gains. Quit before try. In fact, success and failure are on the same path.
5. Fear Of Neglect
The child needs to feel competent. He needs to feel he is important. You may be stressful under financial hardship or even worse, divorce with a child. Have you ever brought along the negative emotion to tell the child that he is the burden? It is as if all the bad luck, hardship, and disappointment is the child false. All his life he lives in the sense of self-denial and low self-esteem. Pleasing the parent is all he wants to do at the expense of sacrificing his self-interest. He feels lonely and rarely asks for help even in the difficult situation he can handle.
6. Fear Of Negative Words
7. Fear Of No Money
When I was a child, I understood my parents were hinged on one element to affect their happiness. That element was money. Is money a good thing? Or is it a bad thing? What the child sees is “give” and unaware “take” has the equal importance. Negative self-talk comes in to tell we are very poor, my worthiness is the ability to earn money for the family. Some children might take-over the role of parent to take care the siblings for the sake of finding their self-importance. All his/her life is living to work for the others to win the acceptance. He/She will neglect his/her self-needs and accept the unacceptable.
How do you know your intestines are clean? Believe it or not, try this simple testing: Cut a dragon fruit (pitaya) in half and eat the flesh. You can see the black sesame-like pitaya seeds in your poo. The test is to check the pitaya takes how long to get into the bowel and then get out from the body. Half day is perfect. One day is normal. It can't be a good sign if your intestines take 3 days or more to get rid the pitaya seeds from the body. You shouldn’t overlook the long-term effects if your bowel keeps stuck up. Your body is screaming out to you through the signs of fatigue, rough skin, overweight, or bloating if you culminate the toxic from the poor eating. Eat fruits make you feel good about yourself. I like to eat fruits as snacks as it's easy, it's cheap and no need preparation time. Not everyone eats the fruits in a right way. How about you?
How to eat the fruits in a right way?
1. Eat Fresh
Fruits are meant to taste best at their ripening stage. It changes the flavor from sharp taste to become sweeter when it ripens. When we say eating the fresh fruits, we mean the ripened ones.
Avoid eating the contaminated fruits from the residue of pesticides. Pesticides are not merely "attached" to the fruit surface, it had absorbed into the core which is hard to remove by rinsing or soak in the water. Eat the organic fruits is pretty much a good choice.
3. Eating Order
Eat the fruits before the meal or half hour between meals. You are not suggested to eat the fruits immediately after the meal. Why? Your main dish usually has the meat which is the slower digest food. What would happen if the slower digest food gets in the way of the faster digest food? Such improper eating order would cause the fermentation which leads to bloating.
nice to eat the fruits but avoid the fatty fruit such as avocado
It is the best digestion time for your body. Eating full is ok.
Eat less at night.
4. Eating Seasonally
There’s nothing like fresh fruit at their seasonal best. Seasonal fruits taste better and carry better nutrient value as well. Will you eat watermelon in winter? Eating watermelon in winter make you feel cold and uncomfortable. Conversely, the juicy melon helps you stay hydrated and release the hot feeling during the summer time. It's easy to find which are the seasonal fruits. Pick the fruits that are widely available in the food stores and have a better deal are seasonal.
5. Local Fruits
Would you prefer exotic fruits or local fruits? Local fruits are more appealing to me. I would like to pick the fruits that are growing in the farmland nearest to my living place. Beware of the exotic fruits that look so beautiful but carried the residue of the pesticides on the imported lemons, bananas, cherries, kiwi, peaches, and apples. OK, ok, local fruits has pesticides also.
6. Match With Your Body Nature
According to the Chinese medical science, the foundation of everything in the universe including our body nature can categorize into five types (wood, gold, water, earth, and fire). Eating the appropriate food to cope with your type of body nature can optimize the benefit to your health. How do you know your body nature belong to which type? Let's explain in another separate post.
7. Original shape
Eat the fruit in its original shape preserves its optimal energy and nutrients counts. Whenever we try to blending, boiling, or drying the fruits would discount its nutrient value.
8. Food combining
9. Positive energy
I love to eat the fruits carry with positive energy. Positive energy fruits are grown by happy farmers, pleasant workers, organic farmland, or fair trade business and so on.
10. Don’t eat too much
Avoid eating too much. Just enough is fine. Too much is no difference with too little.
Surround Your Home with Pleasant Aromas. How to Creatively Make a Dose of Green to Your Living Space?
An old musty carpet or some other source of the odor is really an attack on our senses. Conversely, surround your home with pleasant aromas to evoke surprise and happiness. Add the fragrant flowers and plants to make your home smell nice. Our mind is awakened by the smell of green to remind us of the good thing at the subconscious level. How to creatively make a dose of green to your living space?
1. Kokedama, Moss Ball Garden
A mom, feminine optimistic style, love to travel. Addict to coffee