“Count your blessings instead of sheep” – Rosemary Clooney sang this Irving Berlin song in the movie White Christmas. In the hustle and bustle and yes, stress of the holiday season, this is great advice.
So often we lay in bed worrying about packages arriving, money spent, who should sit next to who at Christmas dinner and whether Great Aunt Betty will forget to add the sugar to her cookies again.
Wouldn’t counting your blessings be a better routine after you crawl into bed?
1)Thank you for the giggles I shared with my daughter today.
2) Thank you for Taco Tuesday with family.
We found the perfect fall day to visit one of our old haunts.
Olde Town Arvada is about to experience a big changes due to the light rail station. The increase in foot traffic will be great for the businesses. Parking has always been an issue in Olde Town, so the city has opened a new lot near the movie theaters and offers a shuttle to bring you downtown.
We stopped first at a newer pub, Homegrown. They have a nice patio right on main street, it’s a bit noisy with traffic in the afternoon, so we were seated inside near a window. The decor is somewhat industrial with a touch of antlers. It was quite comfortable, the servers were friendly and efficient.
If you want to try a truly delicious appetizer, have the brussel sprouts. They were amazing. We ate every bite, down to the last crumb. Then it was time for a stroll to see what had changed in Olde Town, turns out, quite a bit.
There were a few of the long-time businesses, such as the Arvada Tavern. We’ve eaten here a few times, it’s always good. They did have a Rockabilly group upstairs once in a while, not sure if they still do. As always the Rheinlander Bakery smelled delicious, they are celebrating their 53rd year. We hurried on by as our taste buds were yearning to go inside, but our waistlines said no!
We strolled on down to Arvada Bead Connection, a local favorite where the proprietor is very friendly. Sadly, he is having a going out of business sale. With the changing demographic, the rents are being raised and parking removed which doesn’t appeal to his clientele. MB made sure to scoop up several seed bead tubes for future crafting. We wished him the best and moved on.
Fuzzy’s Tacos across the street is said to be good, we haven’t tried it yet.
There are a growing number of new coffee shops, which we are sure will appeal to early morning commuters. If you want to make your commute really good, drop into the Rheinlander. Hey, you’ll be walking to the light rail, so it’s all good!
Our next stop was Third Eye Gifts, upon entering you feel the warmth of positive energy. The proprietor has several Himalayan Salt Lamps lit and producing negative ions. The negative ones are positive! The smell of incense was not overwhelming, just an added touch.
We asked about the singing bowls and the owner took quite a bit of time to demonstrate them and teach us how they work. We were definitely rookies when he had us try them. I think we’ll be back to purchase one soon. This may be a new favorite shop.
For as chilly as it was, there were still kids in the water park! Located in the center of Old Town, they offer movies here in the summer. During the day, it’s a spot for kids to play while the adults relax on the nearby benches and visit. Near the holidays, a Christmas Tree and other decorations are added. You can also take an old-fashion carriage ride through downtown. We have to admit, this is an improvement on the parking lot that used to sit here.
Schoolhouse Kitchen & Libations is aptly named as it is in the old Arvada School. We’ve heard nothing but rave reviews about this place. We happy to see them re-purposing the old buildings rather than tear them down. It helps to maintain the ambiance.
A local favorite with children of all ages is Scrumptious Ice Cream and their cement pig mascot.
He’s a Superhero today, just a few months ago, he was a hippie, but he’s always good for a kids photo-op. The shop itself offers some unusual and delicious home-made ice cream flavors, dark cherry and bourbon flavors are favorites. Everyday they have something different. On one side of the shop is the ice cream parlor, on the other is an old-fashioned candy store with bottled soda. On a hot evening, this place is packed. Right across the street from the light rail station, they’ll be busy all year-round.
We ran out of time to further explore, and there are so many new shops and restaurants to visit.
If you are in our neck of the woods, be sure to stop by Olde Town Arvada.
Here’s to a Happy Life!
🍁MaryBeth & Sherry 🍂
Recently, in our lives there have been many things to grieve, divorce, death, relationships, world problems and the current state of America.
We aren’t going to offer an opinion on the world’s problems or America; politics or otherwise. We’ll leave it to the media and the internet to misinform you.
It seems as we age that sorrow comes into our lives more often. We shed more tears, reminisce more often, sit alone in silence. It may seem odd to find joy in grief, but it is usually there nonetheless.
Both Sherry and I have lost both parents; we both took care of our aging parents at one point. If at first this seemed somewhat of a burden, in the end in it was a blessing. It allowed them to stay in their homes surrounded by the things and people they loved, letting them be at peace.
For us, the gift was the ability to move forward in our relationships with them, seeing them not so much as a parent but as a friend. I’ve always felt that it helped me to repay the years that they devoted to me even though they did not expect any payment.
In divorce, after grieving your loss, there is a sense of freedom, a re-bonding with yourself and friends that may have been neglected along the way. Your bond with your children changes as they see you in a different light.
There is pain in loss and we are all entitled to experience it. Feel, bemoan, embrace your grief and when you are ready actively seek out the joy that your loved one, your ex-spouse, or ex-friend left in you. Rejoice in your memories and get out there and make more!
Here’s to a happy life! 🍾
MaryBeth & Sherry
I recently came across a book titled “How To Be Interesting” or something to that effect. I only vaguely remember the cover and title, I have no idea who the actual author is.
I thumbed through the book quickly to get an idea of its contents and/or ideas. Some of the suggestions were eavesdrop, maintain eye contact, smile or laugh easily and often.
There are whole blogs to be written on just those 3 suggestions, so just a quick note. While eavesdropping is considered to be rude, often in tightly packed places, it is unavoidable. The author’s point was that you can learn a lot about someone this way and then engage them in conversation based on what you overheard. I’d proceed cautiously with this one.
Maintaining eye contact is consider rude in some cultures and is known to make some people very uncomfortable. However, in a one on one conversation with someone you know this would definitely indicate that you are actively engaged.
As to smile or laugh easily and often, it may well make you interesting as people will wonder what you are up to! They may even be inclined to come over to you and ask. That would be interesting.
In my opinion one of the best way to be interesting is quite simple – Be a Listener. When someone talks to you, LISTEN. If you truly listen to what someone is saying to you, then you can respond appropriately and start a good give and take. Now you are both involved and interested!
It seems obvious to me that most of us want someone to listen to us. Obvious because isn’t the dominance social media the perfect indicator of this need?
We strive through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and Whisper among others to voice our opinions, our emotions, our concerns. Likes, comments, re-tweets, etc are indicators of our success in being heard. Social Media is here to stay, but it’s impersonal for the most part.
Social media means I can’t watch your facial expressions or catch you at an unguarded moment. I can’t feel your energy nor hear your laughter. Do you need a hug? I’d rather do that in person not by liking and sharing. Wouldn’t my being there in person to interact with you make both of us much more interesting?
What do you think makes others interesting? Let us know in the comments, we’d truly like to know.
Here’s to a happy life!
MaryBeth & Sherry
Taking a short vacation with your girlfriends should be a mandatory once a year excursion, although who would argue with taking several a year?
We recently returned from a 3-day trip to La Jolla, CA. Eight women in a 3-bedroom house with ocean views within walking distance of beaches, shops and restaurants. It was heavenly.
Each of us is on a different life journey right now, which makes the camaraderie of girlfriends even more uplifting. Being with your girlfriends gives you the freedom to express feelings you may not otherwise be able to.
Advice, laughter, good food and a few drinks helps to create great experiences and a lifetime of memories.
Friends give you the courage to try things you wouldn’t ordinarily try. For MaryBeth, that was ocean kayaking. A singularly terrifying proposition, I was buoyed by the fact that there were 2 life guards and a very experienced kayaker in the group. With their promises to keep me safe, out we went. I am so happy that I tried it and guarantee you it will never happen again.
We had two items to take care of before arriving, 1) bring a small inexpensive gift for each member of the group; 2) bring a picture of yourself at age 18-20. The pictures brought laughter, compliments and a lot of “look at my hair!”
The gifts were fun way to break the ice and well thought out. Satin eye masks with witty sayings, linen spray, a RFID wallet, a travel journal, a small jar for sand and shells, and a tiny metal starfish reminding us to be grateful for our journeys. Each gift received was embraced and the giver complimented for the thought they had put into it.
Friends who rejoice in your accomplishments, boost your ego and refrain from the negative create a rejuvenating experience. They remind us there is a time for every season whether it be silly or serious and above all, a time to boost each other up with an understanding that is often missing in our every day lives.
Thank you ladies, it was a blast!
Here’s to a Happy Life! ☀️
MaryBeth & Sherry
I think I must be a closet politician. Why you ask? Last night I had a dream where I left my home and went to a crowded public place similar to an open air mall, and started giving a loud speech as to why everyone listening should vote a certain way. Of the little I recall, it seems to me that I was telling them why they should vote for me, what my platform was along with the reasons my views were a step up from the rest of the campaigning crowd! Talk about a nightmare!
Sherry and I both believe strongly that the United States of America has a solid foundation for voting rights. Sure it has a few kinks that could and should be worked out, but as citizens we are allowed to vote for whomever we wish, even though every vote you make is not without pressure. There is no campaigning, known as electioneering, within 100 feet of any polling place here in Colorado. Nonetheless you are inundated with signs and supporters along your route if you choose to vote in person. One of the reasons we choose the mail-in ballot.
Social Media is loaded with ads and personal opinions, along with the occasional friend who threatens to unfriend you if you support certain platforms or politicians. As our friend, please feel free to disagree in a polite, well-thought out, fact driven comment. You just might be able to change our opinion. Or better yet, hide the offending post and move on to our funnier stuff. The agree to disagree philosophy is an important part of our culture.
The deluge continues if you turn on the television or radio. We’d guess that there is a 50/50 chance that everything in these ads is actual fact and not just someone’s manipulation of the facts. That’s okay, we’ve been known to embellish a good story too. Just give the American public credit for knowing the difference.
The point is what used to be a few months of campaigning and all the accompanying rhetoric became an election year and now a minimum of one and half to two years of lead-ins, speculation and generalizations. Every candidate promises at the beginning of their run to avoid attacking other candidates and then the caucuses arrive….
Forget debates, we all know politicians like to argue, if there was that much arguing in our families, there’d be a whole lot of time-outs going on. Media misinformation, in a family situation would be called lying, at home this would have brought on a punishment reminiscent of the scene in A Christmas Story where Ralphie ended up with a very clean mouth. Baiting by commentators and reporters is bullying. And bullying is unacceptable in any other arena.
All of the above is why even if I am a closet politician, you would never see me campaigning.
You will find us sitting at a cafe somewhere sipping wine, water, coffee, whatever the discussion calls for (and sometimes that’s whiskey!) debating the relative (and I use the term lightly) merits of each candidate. We freely admit that usually ends in laughter and a diversion to a completely different subject. We prefer to focus on the positive and bring joy into the world.
Here’s to a happy life!
MaryBeth & Sherry 🌟