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Happy New Year!

1 Jan

What better day than January 1st, to start a 365-Day Happiness Challenge?  Not every item is for everyone…i.e. I will not be trying Nail Art, but, perhaps I will, again, wear some of my favorite things!  Like I try and do every day.  And, I will Not be getting a “new tattoo”, as I don’t have an old one and will keep things that way.  Like many items I blog or pirate, these are just ideas.  Even if you can get a few nuggets from this my job is done!

Happy, Happy New Year!!  Start the year off on the right foot.




Goodbye 2017…Hello 2018

31 Dec

Hello 2018!

Happy, Happy New Year!!  Go Bears!!



And Have Yourself…

22 Dec


Have yourself a merry little Christmas
Let your heart be light
From now on your troubles will be out of sight
Have yourself a merry little Christmas
Make the Yuletide gay
From now on your troubles will be miles away
Here we are as in olden days
Happy golden days of yore
Faithful friends who are dear to us
TGather near to us once more
Through the years we all will be together
If the fates allow
Hang a shining star upon the highest place
So have yourself a merry little Christmas
Have yourself a merry little Christmas
So have yourself a merry little Christmas
Have the Merriest of Merrys!




Gifts for the Fitness Lover

9 Dec


This month I will be blogging about different gift ideas.  I will blog about gifts for Men, Women, Teens, Teachers, Hostess gifts…and today…the Fitness Lover!  I’ve chosen to blog about Fitness gifts, because of my current obsession with Triscuits.  More specifically the Rosemary/Olive oil variety.  Pair them with a bit of butter… and you’ll also be thinking about fitness gifts.  Or pants with elastic waist bands.


Here’s some sage advice.  Do not, never, ever, ever buy someone a scale.  Unless they actually give you the link to the actual scale they want.  I think that’s a horrible gift, btw.  🙂


More on these gifts at


Love, love, love the Wash Me bag. – $14.


A blender certainly is not s super fun gift, but we make smoothies almost every day and a good blender makes this so much easier!  I also love the happy plugs!



Fitbit Alta!  You can get this for $129 or $149 at Nordstrom.  More on this one, later.



The Rubz ball is a life saver for sore feet. You can get them on Amazon for about $5.50. Happy feet. 🙂


These are some of my personal favorites:

S’Well Water Bottle – you can get these in 9 oz, 17 oz or 25 oz bottles.  Fun fact:  The 25 oz bottle holds an entire bottle of wine!  Cheers!


Fitbit – The Fitbit Alta is the new Fitbit.  Looks good enough you don’t need a fancy, schmany cover or bracelet.  I’ve been wearing my original Fitbit Flex since 2013.  Thinking of upgrading to this one, myself.



Massage – who wouldn’t love a Massage gift card?  Massage envy, Spa Finder or a local spa are good bets.  



Ear buds – Bose in-ear – I received these as a gift and use them every. single. day.  They have great sound and don’t hurt my ears.  I use them while walking Maxie, or running on the treadmill or elliptical.  It’s all about the music!


Ear Warmer ear phones – these are a must if you are outdoors and like to listen to your music and in a cold climate.  Speaking of cold climates, it’s been about 20 degrees here in Chicago.  Ugh.  Anywho, you can find these at Target, Brookstone or Amazon, to name a few.


When in doubt… a Gift Card works.  Lululemon or Althea would be great and appreciated.


Tried and True Books – my personal favorite would be a book or two.

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Mer and I have started binge-watching Gilmore Girls!  I love, love, love it!!  Perfect mother-daughter TV.  Paired with a glass (or two) of wine and it’s a perfect night!


Song of the Day:  There she goes again, by Sixpense none the richer

There she goes
There she goes again
She calls my name,
Pulls my train
No one else could heal my pain
And I just can’t contain
This feeling that remains



How’s this for the cutest little snow dog?  Looking out a a world around her.  A world in which she cannot run, unless attached to a leash.


It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas!







Thanksgiving Tips

25 Nov



Just a few helpful hints and tips to get you through Thanksgiving.  That and a lovely bottle of chardonnay. 🙂

Dressing your Table and Buffet


How long to cook your turkey


Thanksgiving Calculator


Thanksgiving Table Talkers… my family does not need these, but perhaps your family is not quite the “talkers” that mine is!


Tips and Tricks



Tips to help you Not overindulge.  Of course what fun is that?


Stores that will be Open on Thanksgiving (BOO!) and stores that will remain Closed on Thanksgiving (YAY!)


Yay for these stores, allowing Thanksgiving to remain a day of Thanks, and over-eating, Not shopping in stores!


The Dirty Dozen.  Enough said!  Bah Humbug to these stores!


today be thankful

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving.  Go Bears!!





The Best is Yet to Come…Happy New Year!

31 Dec


I always think the Best, the very best, is yet to come…and while I always look back on the past year and think of things I didn’t do, things I couldn’t accomplish, people I didn’t get to spend enough time with or things I should have done better, I always think of how happy and blessed I am, and look forward to an even better year ahead… This blog has 3 parts:  Champagne; Hangover Cures, in case you overindulged on champagne, and New Year’s Resolutions!  And yes…the best is yet to come!

CHAMPAGNE…Everything you needed to know

Whether you’re into Champagne that’s sweet, a splurge or even pink, we have the bottle that will make your New Year’s festivities a hit.

First, where does Champagne come from? To be truly called Champagne, it must come from the Champagne region of France — otherwise it’s just a sparkling wine. More than 300 growing areas  produce all of the world’s Champagne, which is either vintage or non-vintage (NV). Vintage Champagne is made from the harvest of a particular year. Exclusive and more expensive, vintage Champagne is only made when the harvest’s quality allows for it. The other type of Champagne, non-vintage, makes up 80 percent of all Champagne bottles and is when winemakers blend different harvests from several areas.

Depending on the sugar content, the taste of Champagne can vary widely. There are several varieties to choose from (from driest to sweetest):

  • Extra Brut is the exact opposite of sweet and is very, very dry. (6 grams or less of residual sugar per liter)
  • Brut refers to Champagnes that are dry, and this is the type that’s the most popular and easiest to pair with foods. (12 grams or less of residual sugar per liter)
  • Extra dry makes a great aperitif and is less dry than Brut. (12-17 grams of residual sugar per liter)
  • Sec contains slightly more sugar. (17-32 grams of residual sugar per liter)
  • Demi-sec is sweet and pairs well with fruit and dessert. (32-50 grams of residual sugar per liter)
  • Doux is the sweetest variety and is not widely available in the U.S. (50 grams or more of residual sugar per liter)




Holiday weight gain is not inevitable if you make smart choices. Get your New Year’s drink on in a diet-friendly way with Laurent Perrier’s Ultra Brut. At only 65 calories a glass, you can have two! ($40)

Budget option

Short on cash? In a setting where a luxury bottle won’t be appreciated? No problem! Budget Champagne doesn’t mean bad Champagne. There are a bunch of wallet-friendly options to choose from including the crisp Möet & Chandon Impérial Champagne. ($37)

The Splurge

If you really have something to celebrate this year, maybe a Champagne splurge is in order. For those looking to drop a little extra cash on a worthy bottle, the 2003 Moet et Chandon Cuvee Dom Perignon gets our pick. This gorgeous bottle oozes luxury and is quite the way to ring in 2013. ($239)

Pretty in pink

If rose Champagne is more your style, opt for a bottle of Veuve Clicquot Brut Rose. With fragrant notes of raspberry, cherry and strawberry, this is one Champagne that deserves to be at your New Year’s party! ($60)  Veuve, happens to be my personal favorite, and since this one happens to be Pink, my favorite color, we will be toasting the new year in with this one. 🙂


And when you’ve had your Fill of Champers… here are some Hangover “Cures”, courtesy of


  • Sleep. Rest is your best friend at this point because your body needs an opportunity to recover. It is best to stay in bed so call in to work if you have to, tell them you have the stomach flu. You will sound so horrible on the phone that they may believe you (unless they saw you at the bar last night, then this is not a good idea).
  • Liquids. Replenish your body with fruit or vegetable juice and water.
  • Avoid caffeine. A weak cup of coffee may be okay, but a lot of caffeine will continue to dehydrate you, which is the opposite of what you want right now.
  • Vitamin C. Drink orange juice for Vitamin C.
  • Food. Eat mineral and protein rich food, even if you don’t feel like it.
  • Pickles. In Poland, drinking pickle juice is a common remedy.
  • Drink a Bloody Mary. While the popular phrase “hair of the dog that bit you” may sound logical with a shot of whiskey left in the bottle next to your bed, it will only provide temporary relief. Try a Bloody Mary instead, while your blood is dealing with the new alcohol it is ignoring the old and in the mean time, the tomato juice and celery are full of replenishing vitamins. If you drank the last of the vodka, make a Virgin Mary or Bloody Maria. Other spicy morning after drink options are Hair of the Dog, in which gin and hot sauce are sure to bite your hangover back, and the Carrot & Cilantro Cooler, another vitamin-packed savory drink.
  • Take a shower. This will not only clean you up a little bit, but freshen and wake up your sense. Some people will also switch between cold and hot water, though don’t take this to an extreme.
  • Try Alka Seltzer Morning Relief. One reader says that it’s all that he and his wife have found that really works for them. He stumbled across this “cure” while his wife was still suffering after two days, within 15 minutes after taking the Alka Seltzer she was fine.
  • Get some exercise. Another reader suggests doing some sort of physical activity. He writes, “In the rare case of having hangover I usually drink about 1-2 liters of water and go outside to do some exercise like mountain climbing, swimming, cycling or just about anything that keeps me sweating.” It takes willpower to move like that when standing seems like a challenge, but there is truth to this for making both the body and mind feel better.
  • Avoid pain killers if possible. The side effects of aspirin, Tylenol, and ibuprofen can be magnified when alcohol is in your system, so it is best (even though it may be the first thing you reach for) to avoid them to kill the hangover pain. Aspirin is a blood thinner, just like alcohol, and can intensify its effects and Tylenol (or acetaminophen) can cause more damage to your liver. Ibuprofen can also cause stomach bleeding. So be cautious when going for the quick relief.
  • Vitamin B. As an antidote, one reader takes a little extra multi B vitamin and drinks a lot of water before going to sleep.
  • Bury me? In Ireland it was said that the cure for a hangover is to bury the ailing person up to the neck in moist river sand. This may be folklore as I don’t know of anyone who has tried it and it seems like too much work, especially if your friends were partying with you, but it’s a little fun trivia for such a heavy subject.



My resolutions are always the same…be kinder, more patient, connect more with friends, exercise more, eat better, live in the moment, blah, blah, blah… Here are some better ideas, from the Daily Beast…I’m just providing the link, to check out on your own:

Popular Resolutions, courtesy of the US Government…because Big Brother is always watching!

Lose Weight
Volunteer to Help Others
Quit Smoking
Get a Better Education
Get a Better Job
Save Money
Get Fit
Eat Healthy Food
Manage Stress
Manage Debt
Take a Trip
Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle
Drink Less Alcohol

And here is when a Picture is worth a thousand words…

This year



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Happy New Year…Hello 2014!!







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Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas…

24 Dec


Have yourself a merry little Christmas,
Let your heart be light
From now on,
our troubles will be out of sight

Have yourself a merry little Christmas,
Make the Yule-tide gay,
From now on,
our troubles will be miles away.

Here we are as in olden days,
Happy golden days of yore.
Faithful friends who are dear to us
Gather near to us once more.

Through the years
We all will be together,
If the Fates allow
Hang a shining star upon the highest bough.
And have yourself A merry little Christmas now.

Song of the Day…Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas, by Judy Garland

Wishing you Peace, Love and Joy… and time to enjoy them.

Merry Christmas to all…



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