Sunday, November 6, 2016

Cubs Win! Cubs Win!

I started this post after right after the Cubs won the NLCS games.  I'm posting it after they won the World Series, but I like where the message was going.
Generally speaking, I don't spend a lot of time watching sports.  I used to say that I was bad luck for the Chicago Bears.  Every time I watched, they lost.  I didn't have a lot of patience to sit and watch a whole Cubs game, so I didn't.  Believe it or not, it never dawned on me to watch highlights.  (Yeah, I really need to talk more about the Cubs with my BFF and die-hard Cubs fan, Murph).
White Sox?  Well, I grew up on the Nort' side so being a Sox fan was never something that was even considered.  Hockey?  Loved it when I was much younger, once my ex-husband taught me about the game.  Then I lost interest when there were too many fights.  Found my love for the game again after watching one of our students, Brody Roybal, as part of the gold medal winning team in the Sochi Paralympics Sledge Hockey games.

I bring all this up because I have reduced my already shortened sleep schedule by getting totally hooked on the Cubs.  Some may call me a bandwagoner.  I'm fine with that.  But here's the thing. This team has an energy that is beyond anything we've seen before.  And you can feel it!!  And it feels like it all stems from their manager.  I wouldn't be surprised to find out that Joe Maddon meditates every morning.  He's just so calm.  And c'mon, what kind of manager would just tell one of his players, when asked for any more advice, "Try not to suck."  He's just so ... great!  I get the feeling he meditates.  He's just so calming.  Watching the way these guys interacted was fun.  I think it was what we needed during this ugly election season.
So here we are after their come-from-behind World Series win, after the parade honoring them, after a week of not too much sleep for what is probably half the Chicagoland, no make that nation's population (cuz there's Cubs fans everywhere).  BFF got to see them win in game 7.  I couldn't have wished anything more for her.  I just may get back into baseball next spring!!  And I might even start watching the Bears.  God knows they couldn't be doing any worse.

Saturday, October 1, 2016

Mother Nature vs. Big Pharma

I am a Wellness Advocate for doTerra essential oils.  I've been dipping my toes in the essential oils pool for a little over a year now.  As with most people I know, my life is busy and runs in many directions.  But I find that when I take the time to come back to learning about the oils, my life is a little less crazy.  And I really, really want to share some of the information that comes my way.

Let me start with my latest Ah-ha moment.  My oldest brother and I took a road trip down to see my youngest brother in Kankakee this week.  My oldest brother has Parkinson's disease and, as with most Parkinson's patients, deals with tremors.  Early in the roadtrip, he reached for his meds and roughly 20 mins. after taking them, the tremors stopped.

I told him about a video I saw on Facebook about a man who also had Parkinson's and he vaporized cannabis oil.  20 mins. later, the man's tremors stopped.  My brother asked, "Temporary?"  Yes, it was temporary.  "Well, I get the same things from my meds already."

Here's where the lightbulb went off in my head.

Okay, not so much the lightbulb, but a real world correlation that I can relate to.  Something I can tell others on why using essential oils is so important to me.  My brother could likely achieve the same effect using plant-based, organic oils instead of synthetic meds that often have side effects.

We live side-by-side with plants.  We live off the fruits and vegetables that these plants provide. We use plants to flavor our foods. We can decompose plants and create earth.  Trees take up our expelled carbon dioxide and provide us with oxygen.  There's a reason we live and breathe and ENJOY our relationship with plants.

So why is he reluctant to consider using it?  I think it's because Big Pharma has managed to have people believe that what gets created in a lab is better than what Mother Nature creates.

I'll be the first to admit that sometimes I just don't connect the dots as quickly as I should.  Just check out the video called "What is an Essential Oil?" on my doTerra website at mydoterra.com/peggykasallis.  It's basically saying the same thing I'm saying here.  But if you stop and just think about our need for plants, just that alone, it makes sense that their existence in our lives is beneficial for all.

Okay, I've rambled long enough.  But I'm not done, so expect more posts about this.  It's a growing passion.  And those who know me well will tell you that when the passion grows, I become more vocal!!

Thursday, July 21, 2016

QR Code? - No Thanks!

As you probably know, I'm nearly a fanatic when it comes to wanting companies to CLEARLY label whether or not their product contains genetically modified (genetically engineered) product.

The U.S. House and U.S. Senate did a "great" job of pushing through a bill that would mandate that the FEDERAL law is followed above a state's law when it comes to labeling.  It is currently on the President's desk, awaiting his signature.

In essence this is what the bill calls for: Each product will have a QR code on it's packaging.  Those who are lucky enough to carry a smartphone (and have decent enough cell coverage AND data minutes available), can scan that code to find the information they are looking for.  That is, AFTER they add the QR code scan app to their phone. It will look something like this:  (if you scan this, it'll bring you right back to this same blog post.)

Here's the thing.  I don't really want to legislate or control what companies put in their products.  But I don't want them to have the ability to pull the wool over my eyes.  I want to make informed decisions on the foods I buy.  For myself and my family, I choose to not use genetically modified foods whenever possible.

So here's my solution to the issue: If a product has a QR code and nothing more stating whether or not it contains GMO (genetically modified organisms) or GE (genetically engineered), I just won't buy it.  I'm hoping others decide the same.  If you're changing your label ANYWAY, to conform to the new law, add the simple text as well.  If not, bye-bye.  I'm not interested in wasting the time to find out about your product.

Saturday, July 9, 2016

Embracing Love and Peace

I've mentioned this before. I don't watch the news. When the channel gets switched to the news in my house, I leave the room. I won't listen or watch the political channels and I won't get into discussions about any of it. That's not to say I don't know what's going on. I do. I just don't expose myself to the details. It gets in the way of my path in life, and that's to be positive and grateful, and to choose love and peace.
I will say that this week, it was difficult. Such violence in the headlines make my heart heavy. I was truly grieving for humankind. And I found it was hard to let it go.

I love these words by Martin Luther King:
"Returning violence with violence multiplies violence, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars.  Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that." 
A few years ago, I read something (and it bothers me that I cannot remember the author) about starting small (in your own backyard) if you want to change the world. That's what I'm doing. I'm choose to find and embrace the good in this world.  If you listen to the news, you'd be inclined to doubt whether you can find any good. There's plenty. Just don't count on the media to show you.

Go out and experience it yourself. Smile first. See what comes back at you. Assume that the driver who is taking that parking spot you were waiting for has just received some bad news. Just make the assumption there's good in everyone and I'm pretty sure you'll find it in most.  And you'll be kinder and gentler for it.


Love and Peace, my friends.  Love and Peace. 

Thursday, June 30, 2016

My Bit Part to Foster Peace and Joy

In this sure to be, (what's the word I'm looking for?) bizarrest? political season coming up, we can already see all kinds of ugliness (yes, that's the word I'm looking for) thrown around.  We see plenty of it already on Facebook.

I've decided I'm not going to play on that court. But I'm not walking away from Facebook because I do find some joy.  And I'll be sharing those joyful posts.  Whether it's pictures of my grandkids,
Little Miss as Anna (Frozen) 
Mr. C finds a frog in his back yard

or gratitude proclamations,


or songs that make you realize there's a lot of RIGHT in this world,

I'm going to stay positive.  I'm going to exude positive.

As I've said before, over and over (borrowed from tut.com)


And with some luck, this will spread and we'll bring more peace and joy to our world.  We need it right now.  And it's within each of us to make it happen.

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Keeping in Touch

Has this ever happened to you?  All of a sudden, seemingly out of nowhere, a friend you haven't heard from in a while comes to mind.  It's not like you kept in constant contact with them, but every few years, you'd touch base.  

That happened this week.  So as I usually do, I did a Google search seeing if there's info on where she might be living.  And I found an obituary.  My heart sank!  Totally caught off guard.  And I'm sorry I didn't know sooner.  I'm sorry I didn't have an opportunity when her loved ones were grieving most, to tell them what she meant to me.  
   
Carolee Long Thomas - 1943-2013
A friend, a mentor, an angel.
You see, she's one of those people that have such an impact on someone's life that she's unforgettable. She recognized something in me when I worked with her at AT&T, then called me when there were openings at Verizon.  I honestly would not be where I am today had she not opened some doors for me.  And now she's gone  I have no regret about not telling her, because I did. She was my mentor and friend. She called me her angel.  I went back and found the last email exchange and cried my eyes out.  

So why am I telling you this?  Because I realized that I went through a silent time with friends where I didn't reach out, didn't answer emails.  I don't know why. I didn't journal at the time. I'm sure it was some sort of depression.  But I'm back. Reaching out is important to me. I'm hoping to blog more. I want to honor the friendship I had with Carolee to make sure I don't go into some lapse again.  And if that happens to you, reach out to someone.  Just one person who will protect you when you need it most, but will understand until you are ready to blossom again.  I'm just sorry I missed reaching out to her one last time!  
Rest in peace, my friend!

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Do You Like To Read?


Do you make time to read?

I love to read, but I go in spurts where I make the time each day to read a little.  At the top of my stack right now is "Rising Strong" by BrenĂ© Brown.
Love her books, love her Ted Talks. I'm a fan. She's just so real...so AUTHENTIC!!

The last book I read (and HIGHLY recommend for my creative buddies and creative wannabes) was "Big Magic" by Elizabeth Gilbert.  Another good one. By the end of the book, you'll be calling her "Liz" like she's an old friend.

My home is one with lots of books.  Sometimes, they are books I am not really all that interested in reading, but my PG sees them and asks me to pick them up for him.  Always with a promise to read them.  But he never gets around to it, saying he never has time.  I, on the other hand, try to make the time.  I find that I bounce between making art, meditation, and reading.  I'm still trying to find the mix that works where I get them all in, but that's still a work in progress.

But I've given a lot of thought as to why my PG has difficulty making time to sit and read.  Then I found this article by Jess Burnquist.  It nearly moved me to tears.  If you love or hate to read, it's a great article to check out and to help you understand those who don't like to read.

Tomorrow starts spring break!  I'm taking the entire week to get ready for gardening, do some reading, get back to meditation, and just address the things that I love.  Yeah, there will be some binge watching, too.  But I'm okay with that.  I can multitask when I binge watch.  Maybe I'll blog a little, too.

Friday, January 1, 2016

Resting "Whatever" Face

I just gotta chime in on this one.  Aren't we all a little tired of political correctness?  Aren't we tired of having to be concerned that a little sense of humor might offend someone?  Are we going to bend over to appease those who want to complain instead of see the humor in something?

I heard today that employees of Goodwill were upset when a company memo went out to advise the employees of the appropriate reactions and emotions to display with customers.  And the memo showed pictures of Kanye West with various emotions displayed.  Wait, it's easier to show you...

Courtesy of http://www.tmz.com/2015/12/10/goodwill-kanye-west-expressions/
Now many of you are aware that this is derived from the ever popular RBF, a.k.a., Resting Bitch Face."  C'mon, you all know at least one person who has an RBF.  You know the kind.  You are explaining something to them, and they look like they're upset with you, right?  But they're not pissed.  It's just their resting bitch face.

I fear we, as a society, are losing our sense of humor.  We are always hearing about some group of people who are offended about something.

Lighten up, People!!  Live and let live!  Enjoy this incredible world we live in and see the humor in things.  More often than not, others are not trying to piss you off!! So don't take it that way!

Happy New Year!  Make this a safe, prosperous, and humorous 2016.  Y'know, if you find the laughter, you'll find the love!!  And this world needs as much love as we give!


Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Meditation & the Monkey Mind

For the last couple of months, I have tried to be faithful in making time to meditate each day. It's not always easy, but it's important to me so I make it a priority.

I can't begin to tell you how often the conversations I've had go something like, "I've tried to meditate, but I can't make my mind stop." So, during this morning's meditation, my monkey mind (this is what I call my mind when it won't rest) decided to write a blog post.  It went something like this:
Deep breaths, in thru the nose, out thru the mouth, close eyes, listen to sounds around you, scan your body to notice how it's feeling, I think I need to write about how this can be difficult (monkey mind), breathe... breathe, I think I can title it (monkey mind) breathe...breathe.  I wonder how long it takes to get a doctorate degree, because the training can be that long to master this (monkey mind) breathe.  
You get the idea.  It's not always easy.  But I will tell you, it's so worth it.  I find I am calmer, less judgmental, happier. But I consider this a journey.
Miles Markey, son of Liz & Jason Markey
photo courtesy of Liz Markey
I use an app called Headspace.  Andy, the "guide" through these meditations has a very calming Brit accent and his voice makes it easy for me to start meditating. Plus, he's kinda cute! And the app is free to test drive it!

So let me quickly point out a few things I've learned about meditation, and hopefully you'll think about giving it a try.

  • It doesn't need to be 30 minutes.  It can honestly be as little as 5 minutes when you're in a hurry, but I would start with a 10 minute session.
  • You don't have to sit on the floor in a lotus position. You can sit in any chair.
  • Your mind will wander. A lot. Consider this training. You wouldn't expect to run a marathon if you haven't trained for it. Same thing here.
  • Many times, you start telling yourself that your mind is too busy to do it. But then you give yourself permission to have a monkey mind, it pays off when you stick with it.  Those often turn out to be my best meditations.
  • You can do it almost anywhere. Of course, it's better if the cat isn't trying to sit in your lap, or the dog isn't trying to lick your face but if it happens, you roll with it.  
All this is offered with a wish that your Christmas and New Year's celebrations bring you peace, in spite of all the chaos of the holidays. And whether or not you make resolutions, consider making peace and tranquility a high priority for 2016.  For each person who works at finding peace in their own lives, our world will be a little better for it.

Merry Christmas!!


Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Veterans Day 2015

Six years ago, I gave my thoughts about Veterans Day here.  My three older brothers and my Dad all served our country by enlisting.  Our family saw all three branches of military service represented (Navy/Army/Air Force).  Here's one of my favorite pics of my Dad.  

 
It couldn't have been easy to make a decision to join a branch of the military, But I think many people feel the way I do, and as I did back in 2009.  I am so proud to say I am an American.  I am so honored to know that millions voluntarily step up to serve to protect us.  I'm so privileged to say, openly and from deep in my heart, 
GOD BLESS AMERICA - LAND THAT I LOVE

And call me dorky, but I feel strongly about our flag, as well.  So to my friend who doesn't want to be credited for this picture (you know who you are!), thanks for the awesome picture of our flag!

Whether or not you are working this day, please know that there are millions in our nation who are grateful for your service to our nation.
THANK YOU!