I hear friends crow about how they rise at the crack of dawn, before anyone else is awake to go for a run, do a few loads of laundry and enjoy their cup of coffee before their day is filled with the demands of their husbands and children. They are so proud of themselves!!! Being an early bird is so admirable!! I discovered today that these bright eyed and bushy-tailed folks are called "larks." If you were blessed with the "lark" gene, you are a lucky person indeed.
I, on the other hand, am not so blessed. Being a night owl housewife is just plain shameful. (Unless of course, you're nursing a baby, or working the night shift at the emergency room.) I would love to go for a run, drink a cup of coffee and vacuum the house, at 1:30 am. The only problem is, these are all activities which are stimulants, which would result in my staying up ALL NIGHT, which would be fine with me, if I could sleep until 11.
If you want to have a good old time with me, come on over to my house at around 10 pm. I am a bundle of laughs at 10 pm. I am not, however, pleasant to be around at 6 am. (The only exception to that is when I'm curled up under my comforter snoring. And YES, I do snore.)
My energy level hits its stride around 4 pm. At 11 pm I am still rarin' to go. Tonight at 12:20 am I sat in my closet organizing sweaters, quietly, so as not to wake my slumbering husband. I felt ashamed. I should be sleeping, like all the other respectable citizens in this town. What's even more shameful is getting snagged in my pajamas at 10 am by some go-getter neighbor who has been up for 5 hours before I even open my eyes. Get off your high horse you annoying lark!!!!
I've been like this since I was a kid. When I was as young as 7, I would sneak a flashlight into my room and read until way after midnight. Sometimes I would even sneak and turn on records quietly in my room. The mornings were a nightmare. "Just five more minutes Mom, I'm sooo tired!!!"
According to my research, our internal body clocks (or circadian) sleep-wake cycle, which regulates hormone levels, body temperature, blood pressure, alertness and performance ability is genetic. My poor children have inherited my night owl gene. If we had it our way we'd all stay up until midnight, EVERY night. It is my job to fight our natural body clocks and function in our 9 to 5 society. Some school mornings, it gets just plain ugly around here.
Why can't my body clock work in a more socially acceptable way? Believe me, I've tried it, on myself and my kids.
I cruised the internet and came up with some pretty obvious tips to change my owl-like ways:
As you can see, there is no hope for me, except to change my nature. If you were born a "lark." God bless, you can just go with the lord gave you and the world will applaud your vim and vigor.
1. Set your wake-up time -- and then stick to it like glue. Ideally you should get up at the same time every morning, including -- gasp! -- those precious weekends. If you sleep more than 90 minutes later on a Saturday or Sunday, you will affect your body clock, readjusting it to the later wake-up time just as you have to get up early again Monday morning.
2. Seek light. Immediately upon awakening, expose yourself to bright light for at least 20 minutes, either by walking or exercising outside or using a special light box or portable light visor around the house, with approximately 10,000 lux of light.
3. Try melatonin. It's important to discuss this first with you doctor, but for many people, taking this over-the-counter supplement -- a synthetic version of the natural hormone -- about six hours before you want to go to sleep can help regulate your body clock.
4. Put yourself in a position where you can sleep. Avoid eating, alcohol, caffeine and exercise, which rev up the body, for at least a few hours before bedtime, and then turn off the TV, power down the Internet and get off the phone. Instead, turn to your MP3 player for some mellow music or a "boring" book on tape. That way you'll evade additional light exposure and be able to start winding down. "If you keep moving, keep doing things, you're going to override any sleep signals you want to be reinforcing,"
I, on the other hand, will have to fight all my natural tendencies in order to fit in with society.
It's not fair I tell you!!!
I think I'm going to start a revolution. This country is all about equal opportunity for all people. Am I right here?? I think we should have special programs in our schools for "night owl" children. Perhaps we can hire some special "night owl" teachers to start the school day at 11 am.
I'm tired of being discriminated against! Why should I have to fight the way I was born just because society tells me I have to get up at 7!!!???
Are you with me here? What do you think? If you're a night owl, do you feel sick and tired of trying to fit into society's schedule?
I think President Obama should take some of that stimulus money he has and implement some programs designed to help "night owls"function better in society.
I'm going to start my own group, and I'm calling it the NAANO. The National Association for the Advancement of Night Owls.
Say it loud and say it proud. "NAANO!!"
A representative from my organization might be calling you or come knocking on your door to ask for your support. When they do, please keep an open mind. Try not to see night owls as lazy, or strange. Remember, we were born this way, and we just want to be accepted.
Okay, I'm actually tired now.
Please don't call my house before 9 am.
And please don't judge me.
Thank you for your support on behalf of the NAANO.
I do have pictures like this of my kids, with similar un-happy faces due to the fact the camera is pointed in their direction. Only this isn't un-happy...
According to Jewish Law, a person is not allowed to think holy thoughts of prayer or of the Bible in an unclean place. A person's thinking interacts with his outside surroundings and, it is disrespectful to the holy thoughts and a conflict with the uncleanliness of the place he is in.
A person is not allowed to think badly of an otherwise genuine person. The mere reservation of trustworthiness is considered wrong and harmful to that individual. Even worse, for both parties, is to hate in your heart and bear a grudge.
The Talmud tells us that when the Bible character, King Balak, brought sacrifices to curse the Jews, his bad intentions brought a harsh punishment years later, and his good deeds, the sacrifices to G-d, generated the reward that King David and King Solomon where his progeny!
While on the subject of sacrifices...if a person brought a sacrifice and, in his mind, he was thinking an intentional wrong thought, to eat the sacrifice outside the allotted time or place where the sacrifice must be eaten, this would invalidate the offering.
The Rambam says, a person should always see himself as half-meritorious and half-contemptible, and with even one thought, he can tip the world to the positive or to the negative.
A person's thought can influence and tip the entire Universe for the good.
The Talmud further says that in one moment a person can make an about face from where he is and think and regret his past misdeeds In that one moment, his status changes from being considered an evil person, and he can become righteous!! Saying he is sorry mechanically accomplishes nothing. It is specifically his thoughts of regret, and his sincere resolution to look in another direction from now on, that transform the person status, entirely.
One of my teachers sent to hard labor for eight years remembered how his spiritual teacher once said that all those who were in the Russian gulag for teaching Judaism should intensely connect in their thoughts, and he would reciprocate.
So, at the first possibility, he closed his eyes and envisioned himself in a private audience with the Rebbe giving him a letter regarding his situation. The Rebbe actually responded with a letter!
When his wife received this letter she first thought he successfully escaped and soon would be reunited only to discover that he was still in the hard labor camps. It was only years later seeing the date on the letter did the whole story fall into place. Think positive, think faith and transform your world. Transform the entire universe.
Hopefully I will wake up properly and get my butt into gear for some sweet singlespeeding action.
..Other news, im on 'The Skinny' Forever 21 Inspiration Board :D
Not that I'm the most fashion forward, but I am proud to say that my college years were not spent in sweatpants and stereotypical, free t-shirts endorsing my place of higher education. I'm a firm believer in the power of the denim. Though my wardrobe was nothing high-end or too planned out, it's amazing how much better I seemed to feel when I was dressed and primped to my specifications. I never understood how individuals could just roll into class in what they slept in, and actually be motivated to work and learn. I'm not knocking it, it's just not my style. However, how hard is it to put some pants on? Seriously...
While I could go on and on about college fashion faux pas, I want to address one of the most important things about post-college life; the grown-up tune-up, in terms of clothing. Much like when I graduated high school, I feel my fashion sense matured when I went to college. Gone were the days of the snarky, script t-shirts of the early 2000s, and the too low lowrider jeans went with them...THANK GOD. I opted for jeans that actually fit my body type, and shirts that fit well and did not necessarily have my favorite double entendre on it. As my college career rolled on, I evolved with my clothing, just like everyone does. I found my aesthetic, and also cuts and fabrics that complimented me.
My senior year as well as my immediate post-grad life found me working at a series of internships and jobs. Thus, I turned to a source that could at least help me get on track with how a working adult should dress: my mother. I come from a family of working women, therefore I have come to respect the working women's wardrobe. It's a fine line for women in the workplace when it comes to dress. Obviously, one must be mindful of her position, age, line of work, and body type to be taken seriously while dressing in the working world, and especially in the adult world. Working attire has also changed significantly over the years. Gone are the pantyhose and propriety of the 50s and 60s, as well the power suits of the 80s. However, in a world that is increasingly more casual in dress, it's important to bear in mind that a place of work is still a place of work. But how does a young, wanna-be professional lady, dress the part while still looking, well...young?
The first step in my transformation consisted of my mother telling me to strictly shop in the women's section. As hard as it was for me to relinquish what was left of my youth, she was right. I found things fit me better, and that I felt like I could be taken more seriously. I also was mindful that I wanted to look my age, but not frumpy. I felt much more put together, and comfortable, without being "too comfortable." A personal favorite of mine, and a great go-to label for any occasion is International Concepts (INC). The line is typically found at Macy's, and pretty decently priced. I have been shopping in INC heavily since I started working full-time. I really appreciate all the tiny details they incorporate onto a lot of their tops and their dresses are brilliant. I will admit some of their items need a little TLC, given many of their garments are made out of a mixture of synthetic fibers included the dreaded rayon. But usually a little spin on the gentle cycle, hand washing, or a quick trip to the cleaners works just fine. Overall, I think the cuts of the garments work really well on most body types. Being a curvy lady that also wears petites, I appreciate garments that accentuate my figure, but don't overexpose it. I also love that many items of the collection can easily take you from the office to downtown seamlessly. Overall, I always feel put together in INC.
I was going to go picture crazy on this one, but I've decided to share the link off of Macy's site so you can even check out INC's shoes as well. Please note the new color palettes they're using this season. They made me incredibly happy this weekend! Also, if you're in the Atlanta area, I suggest the Macy's at North Point or Lenox Square Mall.
Now, go put your "Big Girl" pants on....they look better anyway.
It was a nice walk, doing what I love to do the most, and it was really neat that out of the maybe 14 people that actually came, I knew 4 of them. I hope Derek, Marg, Marina, and Kelly got some great pictures, and so sorry that Terry couldn't make it. I think it would be neat to do something like this in the fall too.
Don't you just want to squeeze him?
On a side note, it's evident from this film that Scottish National dances (the Lilt, Flora, etc.) evolved from early French ballet.
Last night my husband and I along with our good buddies had a blast at a Steve Winwood/Santana concert at the PNC Arts Center here in beautiful Central Jersey.
Here are some photos from our very fun, very sweaty evening.
Here's me, with my $14 frozen margarita in a special guitar "souvenir glass" which I promptly tossed when I finished sucking this baby down.
Here are some of our bestest buds and a random dude after we switched over to beer.
Here is a distorted photo that I took of myself and my sweet husband Brad, we celebrated 12 years of wedded bliss on Saturday.
Santana...well...let me tell you...UNFRICKENBELIEVABLE. I saw them years ago. (About 25 years ago!) I liked them back then, but I looooved them now. Their music is perfect for an outdoor summer concert, totally hot, everyone was dancing, and smiling and having a blast.
Carlos Santana's parting words to the audience were "you are the light and the love."
As corny as it sounds, I really felt it last night.
Thoughts are powerful. They maneuver the soul, impact the soul, and can be a negative or positive influence and steering force in a person’s life. Another characteristic of thought is, what you think will influence the atmosphere and vibrations outside of you.
So the choice of what you think, is not just a personal one, which will impact your own life, it will as well shape the world around you.
One of the mystics write, “when you walk into the 4 cubits of a person and good thoughts come into your mind, most likely the person around you is a G-dly person. However if you should have negative thoughts, bad and unproductive ones, this is a proof you just came in contact and encountered a not so good person”.
We all know how terrible it is to gossip and speak bad things of people. The sages say, it is equal to the worst transgressions. In the book of Zechariah he goes further and says “one should not even think badly of his friend in his heart”. The reason is because, even thinking will have a negative influence on that person.
“A good thought G-d brings to fulfillment”. The power of thought is that it alone, can and will create its realization. Because thought is higher than time and space, I.e., we can take ourselves in thought to the past or the future, which is why, through thought, a person, can influence and sway the lower territories of both time and space. This power of thought applies as well regarding someone else. When a person has positive thoughts about someone else or negative ones, from the powerful position of thought, it will have an effect on that person
Good positive invigorating thought, can reach deep inside and bring out the best light and strength from a friend who may be a little sad etc. When a person thinks of someone, a close friend etc. even though they are not close to each other physically, they will be connected and intimate, influencing each other through the power of thought.
Great Chassidic Rabbis would set aside time when they would strongly and deeply contemplate on the love they had for their students and followers. From many stories we know, that this would in middle of nowhere arouse a reciprocal love and yearning and a great spiritual strength in the hearts of their students.
When a person looks strongly and focused at someone, the other person not even knowing turns to the one looking at them. When a person thinks deeply about someone else, this energy like a laser beam radiates to that person. It’s kind of scary but that’s the power of thought.
One of my favorite drinks is the Singapore Sling, a classic cocktail invented in 1915 at Singapore's Raffles Hotel. I first tried it flying Singapore Air to Seoul back in 2008. I think it's a perfect midsummer cocktail. Here's how to make your own:
- 2 oz/ 56 mL of gin
- juice of 1/2 lemon
- 1 teaspoon of powdered sugar
- 1/2 oz/ 14 mL of cherry brandy
- Fresh pineapple juice
The guys, my dad on the unstable floaty thing in the middle, Kerry in front of standing Matt.
So when I was asked to shoot K's baptism, I was very nervous. I was also told by Amy that lightening won't strike in the church, so I was safe.
It was pretty hot, poor baby had lots of layers on, but she was a trooper and we managed to get a few shots of her while she was happy.
Here's a sneak peek.
Dad, Dwayne Mollin swining K. to help cool her off. If you ever need an mc/dj for an event, he's awesome. I've mentioned him before, possibly when ranting and raving about Karla and Vince's Most Funnest Wedding. He was one of the reasons the wedding was such a blast.
I'm very thankful to have been included in this special day!