Sunday, July 24, 2005

Gifts in life

There are only a few things in this world that are true gifts:

Health- For it cannot be bought.
Fortitude- This enables you to see that all failures are only another opportunity to learn.
Happiness- A gift you can only give to yourself.
Love- If you find it, treasure it, protect it, nurture it and the person you share it with.
Faith- It sustains you when all else is absent.
Truth- Mainly with yourself. This is the most difficult place to apply it.
Friendship- A gift beyond words, they keep you grounded, laugh, cry and play with you without judgment. Always return the gift.

When the inanimate teaches

Well, my math class is in its final stretch. Only 3 more weeks and 3 more tests. So what has the re-taking of College Algebra taught me?

I had forgotten a great deal of stuff!
It does come back to you.
My greatest problem with math is that I go too fast.
I must S-L-O-W D-O-W-N.

Once I commanded myself to go slowly and then basically re-take the test via proofing, all was well. Although I really like math, I do not have talent for math. I wish I did, I would be studying quantum physics or some other crazy thing like that!!

So the greatest lesson: patience.
This seems to be a lesson I need to really learn. The whole rest of my life seems to be driving this lesson home.

I have always thought of myself as a patient person. However, I think I have come to realize that this patience I only gave to others, never to myself. I'm sure a few of you can relate. I deserve the same things I give to others so I have learned to be more patient with me.

At least I get to chalk up another A if all continues on the same path!!

Unexpected Bunkai

I have recently discovered other uses for Tae Kwon Do in addition to self defense and personal fitness. The martial arts in general keep you healthy both mentally and physically. So, what other uses, do they have??

For stubborn shelves, a swift, sharp front kick, upwards, will dislodge the shelving.
For well installed base boards, heel stomps are very efficient in either breaking the offending board or dislodging it.
Any vertical supports can be felled by strong, accurate inside crescent kicks.
Or, vertical obstacles that you can get to the side of can be removed with a very effective side kick.

Word to the wise (wild?), be certain your techniques are accurate in their delivery or you can end up with some nasty back-lash. At any rate, home improvement is yet another venue for one to practice the arts.
Happy Training!

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Harry Potter Zeal!!

Yes, I have officially lost my mind.

A friend and I signed up to obtain the newest Harry Potter book, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. So, Friday night, at 11PM we went to Borders Bookstore to stand in line and get our book for half price.
Our numbers were 360 and 361 so we were in for a wait. However, the people were fabulous. It was so great to see some many different types of people and all different ages. Some were dressed up, some were reading other Potter books, some were just trying to stay awake! I fell into the later category. My friend and I passed the time by reading 30 second mysteries to each other.
The greatest thing was all the kids and how excited they were about a book...About all the Potter books.
How great to be so excited about reading!
Yes, I have read them all myself save the last one. Gotta finish this math class first!
And to see the parents out there with their kids being so supportive at such a late hour...It was great!

So we finally got our books at 1:40AM. We went home and fell into bed.

I am glad we went and it was really fun!

And They're Off!!

I had a work birthday outing this past Friday to Lone Star Park in Grand Prairie. I invited another horsey friend along to enjoy the fun.

As she is a quicker blogger than I, she has already blogged about it. But I'll add my two cents in as well!!
Absolutely the weather played havoc with our arrival and my leaving my hat in the car was a true travesty. I have to wear it to work this Monday to show everyone which hat is was!! I do have quite the collection.

Once we were fed and watered appropriately, it was time to assess the gorgeous thoroughbreds and place bets accordingly. For me, in order to do this, I have to go and see, smell and examine the horses. Their grooms walk them past naked at first, then, in the appropriately numbered tacking stalls, they are tacked up for everyone to see. This is the best time to assess each horses mental state. If they are already too worked up, it's no good. I always look for alert, quite and attentive. I like to see the grooms gently fawning on them. I also assess stride over reach (how far ahead of the front hoof print the hind hoof print falls; the bigger the distance the better). Lastly, I assess overall conformation (hip and shoulder angles) and any discernible gait imbalances.

Then, I bet based on the horses attributes and barn, jockey and trainer records.

I love it!! The track is to die for fun!! Nothing quite like a horse race. Especially when one comes from behind to challenge the leader in the last couple furlongs.... Whew!!

And the people watching/listening is premier!
When I left I was ahead almost double my money....I can't wait to go back!

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Sparring with Props

Tonight in class, some of us sparred with a pretend weapon. One of us had a padded stick, essentially a stick with a long square piece of foam covered in nylon.
It was interesting how it changed the sparring.

First of all it was incredibly fun!! And, very difficult!
Because you were concerned about being bonked with the foam attack weapon, your attention was divided and thus, you were more relaxed. Of course, the attack of the giggles was as deadly as the padded weapon!! But you relaxed, so you got to practise moving and sparring and being more easy going.

Then, you learned that you don't watch the weapon or you get smacked with those other weapons your opponent wields so well...Tae Kwon Do techniques!!
So, a big picture view became more prevalent. And...the best can take the weapon away and use it yourself!!
Really, it was great fun, but very instructional.
This would be a great method to work out relationship issues, big foam padded sticks. Once you got over the physical angst, the laughter would breakdown the barriers for sure!

Friday, July 08, 2005

The Therapy of Writing

I have been a journal keeping person for as long as I can remember. Before I knew how to write, I kept sketch books of my favorite animals involved in a variety of scenarios. Drawing was a passion too. I came across this interesting article regarding Writing therapy. I have always know that writing in its varying forms was very therapeutic, it is what helped me survive my childhood, but I am always excited to read about science backing up my personal experience. I also have not always been very good at communication. Some would say I am still abysmal in this department. But writing offers the opportunity to take those thoughts and words and tether them to the page, make them be still and look at them; examine them.

Then, you can throw them away, keep them, burn them, do what you want. Because now it is your choice. I think for me, writing about things always gave me a level of control over my thoughts. Very grounding.

Monday, July 04, 2005

(Wimpy) War of the Worlds

I went to see War of the Worlds this weekend. I was unimpressed. Granted I am not a Tom Cruise fan, but on occasion he has surprised me. I really thought the movie really fell short of its potential. Special effects were so so, and the tripods were very 'Alien-ish' to me. The foreshadowing at the beginning of the movie was a bit thick I thought. Generally, I wished I had waited for it to be on television. Go see it if you must, but I'd wait to see it for free or at least for cheap.

Sunday, July 03, 2005

Foot Issues.

I went with friends today and had some girl fun. Among the girl-ness was a pedicure. I have had the same pedicurist for several years now, but today I went to someone different. This new person was considerate, caring, and very good at her job. But it wasn't Christy, my normal pedicurist. And I have foot issues. I don't like people I don't know touching my feet. Yes, add this to the list of my wierdnesses. It just makes me uncomfortable. So instead of relaxing and enjoying my pedicure, I sat there and practiced Tai Chi breathing until it was over. Needless to say, it was an excellent pedicure as far as quality, but not enjoyable. My toes look great and all the calluses are gone, but I won't venture away from Christy again. Sadly, I have the same "stranger danger" about massages too. This is very upsetting. Everyone speaks of how wonderful massages are. The two I've had, I have tried, were awful. An hour of repressing the urge to bolt for the door; not relaxing! I guess massages will only get to come from people I know as well. Fortunately, one of my very close friends is a certified masseuse. So maybe I'll let her try!

One foot in front of the other....

I have recently began running. I am quite certain I have lost my mind. I have a 2nd degree black belt test coming up and I need to make sure the cardiovascular system is working well. I have found that when stressed, if I run, the distaste of running overpowers the thoughts of whatever is causing me stress.
I hate to run.
Did I mention I hate running?
Regardless of my personal position on running, it has been serving a good purpose. I am tired enough to sleep at night. I sweat really profusely, thus feeling as though I have had a good work out. This equals personal satisfaction. I get so consumed with putting one foot in front of the other that my brain does cease to be so busy. Tai Chi does this too, but that's another blog...

Running definitely takes the edge off. So, even though I really don't like doing it, it is getting easier. It is easier to keep running for one more block.
So far, the knees are holding up.

I'll let you know how the running progresses. I am not sure how long I will keep at it....
Did I mention I do not like to run?

A friend told me this about running and I like it:

Only run when pursued.

Sage advice.

But don't you have to be somewhat adept at running in order for the whole fleeing principle to have any possible efficacy??
Just a question.....