Random 5 for August 2 – time, life, endings, food, happiness

August? Already? – How can it be August? Seems like January is six weeks long and July is less than 24 hours. I’m sure August won’t feel much longer. Then it’s winter.

Source: Wikipedia

Source: Wikipedia

Circle of life – This summer I have noticed that the wildlife population is different. I have only seen two bunnies all season and very few squirrels. The many chipmunks which were frolicking in the yard a month ago are few and far between. The answer is the new neighbors. We have a red-tailed hawk couple that took up residence a month or two ago. The hawk’s cry sounds like shore bird. The beloved husband was convinced it was a bat. Then I saw it. It was sitting on the neighbor’s roof squawking (probably a spat with the missus). There were cardinals around it and it wasn’t interested. It was looking for something else. I know it’s the circle of life and all that but I get very protective of my critters, even the annoying ones (no, not the deer although they are beautiful).

Ok, I cheated. This is Longwood Gardens but some garden centers are just as beautiful. Courtesy of Longwood Gardens.

Ok, I cheated. This is Longwood Gardens but some garden centers are just as beautiful. Courtesy of Longwood Gardens.

I am the kiss of death – Yes I am. You can be sure that once I like something it will be discontinued. Two of my favorite garden centers have closed in the past few years. The last one was a half mile from my house. That was close enough to drop in and admire the plants for pure “happy” therapy. All gone. The last straw was our local Starbucks no longer carries S’mores Frappuccino’s. I’m not a big frap fan but that one was really good! “They say” it’s out of season. Really? It’s August!

Mindful eating – Restaurant portions are too big for me. Sometimes they provide a second meal and sometimes a lunch snack. When my former work friends and I go out for dinner we split an entrée. Lately I’ve been doing physical work that makes me hungry. Hungry means no control and I eat the whole thing. Then I feel like a beached whale. I am resolved to practice mindful eating and enjoy each morsel.

Happiness – I have the attention span of a flea (a very small flea). I rarely click on videos that are longer than 3 to 4 minutes. Definitely won’t click unless it’s music. I’m not much on “growth” videos (unless someone has one that will make me taller!). However a new blogger I follow, Find Your Middle Ground, posted a TED video of Dr. Dan Gilbert about the science of happiness. I am fascinated by the topic because happiness is so fleeting. What makes you happy one day will be different on another day. I loved the talk. I made a direct connection to experiences in my life. If you have 20 minutes listen here.

So how was your week?

 

49 thoughts on “Random 5 for August 2 – time, life, endings, food, happiness

  1. Mindful eating… on my recent trip some of my companions split a meal… but not me, I have to order the whole thing for myself…. then halfway through I can’t eat any more and end up leaving it…. or worse yet, forcing myself to eat it all because I paid for it! When I do split a meal it is always enough… why can’t I remember that?

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  2. I know how you feel about favorites just *poof* disappearing. My complaints are about lipstick and nail polish colors. I find a shade that flatters, and then IT’S GONE! Why?

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    • I have that with nail polish. I am particular because I want a pale color where you can’t see minor dings. I have tried some ($$) and they didn’t work! I don’t like when they change underwear styles. What’s with that anyway? Unless they can come up with a better fabric, leave the basics alone!

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  3. I love your introspective thoughts Kate…. the attention span of a small flea and your kiss of death for the things you like! Hilarious! And thee is that germ of truth you always have in all your posts which makes them so beloved. 🙂

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  4. Beautiful garden. We find it is the jays that are raiding the nests. I know we have sharp-shinned hawks that take too many of our beautiful birds. Yeah, the circle of life thing… stinks when it comes to baby birds we have been watching, waiting for them to launch. We could do without a few gray squirrels but I don’t want anything messing with our Fox Squirrels! I enjoy Val’s blog too. CH and I have been splitting meals for years or ordering our own meals and taking them home for another dinner. I like the thinking of happier about your choice if you can’t change it. I am terrible at making decisions and decision making is harder for me as I have gotten older. We have been deciding to move now since 2009. The flannel shirt and plaid boxers are only here at the Tiny Ten… wouldn’t catch me out and about in them… 😀

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    • We decided to move, looked at a few houses that didn’t work for us and proceeded to paint, add a fence, etc. We’ll keep looking but we have to keep the house maintained or no one else will want it when it comes time to sell. Haven’t seen a lot of jays this year but they are around. Circle of life. Hrumpf!

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  5. 3rd of August…whoosh! The teachers here are on the job this week; kids next week. How can that be? Who doesn’t want that garden…gorgeous. Whenever we eat out most everyone seems to take home much food…sometimes for two more meals! The amount thrown out at restaurants would feed so many people. Sad.

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    • Our school kids have another few weeks until the last week in August. I understand why seniors look for the “senior” menu with smaller portions. Some things don’t do well reheated.

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  6. Nothing stays the same, does it? So many of my retail favorites have disappeared and there aren’t always good alternatives. And how is it I never noticed S’mores Frappuccinos. There is quite a study of happiness these days and wonderful resources! Thanks for adding the TED talk!

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    • Happiness is fascinating. I loved his discussion where you are happier about your choice if you can’t change it after you’ve made it. If you can change a decision you spent time laboring over it after the fact which you don’t do if you can’t change it. Hit home here as I was painting a room. First color didn’t work…or did it?

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  7. Mindful eating. That’s a good idea. I know what you mean about feeling like a beached whale after eating too much. I was going to be mindful about eating the box of chocolates my house guest gave me. One a day, I said. But self control is so much effort. I gobbled though it in a few days, and now I’m glad it’s gone. Better not to have temptation so close at hand.

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  8. Dr. Dan Gilbert’s TED talk revealed something I know – indecision will drive you crazy. Do I want the Monet haystack painting or the one with the sunrise? Arrggghhh!

    For me, August is the end of summer. On the Weds., the 5th, I will return to work – my last year of teaching. Students return the 12th. Summer just flew by.

    Sometimes, when Dave and I are eating out, we do split meals. It depends on how close we are to home. Some restaurants’ portions are 2 to 3 times a normal serving size. Crazy!

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  9. I’m with everyone else, Kate. Can’t believe it’s August. I get up at 5 am to run a few mornings a week and it’s dark out! As for those critters I’ve got more bunnies, Bill has more turkeys – moms and babies (lots of babies). The two years he had fox, haven’t seen any this year. Deer, always. I have no idea who’s eating who for dinner but the population has changed a bit. I love looking at flowers too, good therapy.

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  10. What? Those Frappuccino’s are like bathing suits in the store and have a short availability? Weird.
    Longwood is a beautiful place. Our local redtails seem to prefer the doves, squirrels, and rodents…but small dog owners do worry.
    I think all the excessive sunlight and heat is creating too much appetite here..ugh…and it’s too hot to exercise much…but I’d better….double ugh.
    Now I need a nap…or something to eat to stay awake…both activities are fattening, sigh.
    (Love the first 2 lines…unfortunately it won’t get cool here until Nov….back to choosing eating or naps…)

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  11. We have red tail hawks which is good because there are many restaurants in this area and that means rats. The hawks are very good at controlling that population. Unfortunately they like variety in their diet. Beware…they like cats.

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  12. Wait.. it’s August?

    My husband and I also often share meals when we go out. We tip generously so, hopefully, the waitperson isn’t too disappointed. When we don’t share, I usually bring enough home for a second meal. When I see the portions that restaurants serve, it’s easy to understand why so many Americans have a weight problem. We are taught as children to finish everything on our plate and that habit is hard to break.

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    • There used to be a local restaurant that served a “small” portion (or a half portion they called it) for about 2/3rds the price. I loved it but they discontinued it. I’d be very large if I ate all the food I get at restaurants.

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  13. Thanks for the link Kate and your kind words. So glad you enjoyed Dan Gilbert. Me too!
    I did get a giggle with the Longwood Gardens shot 🙂
    Not only did July fly by, but we too are sharing dishes … and eating earlier. I used to laugh at old people … and now I laugh at myself cos I am one 😄… Let me get back to that video again …

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  14. Oh, we have red-tailed hawks that breed every year! And every year in July, the fledglings scream until they learn in scares the prey away. (Mainly, they are screaming, “Mom! Feed us!” And the mother screams back, “What do I look like, a short-order cook? Get your own damned food!”) Eventually the girls figure out how to feed themselves and shut up.

    The bigger birds are the females, FYI. Bigger, smarter, meaner. 😉

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  15. We are more and more splitting meals at restaurants, much earlier than I thought I’d be doing this kind of thing. My wife never finishes any meal when we go out, and I invariably eat too much anyway. Still, I’m self-conscious, almost quasi-apologizing for this practice with the waitress. I suppose this too shall pass…

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  16. You’re so funny Kate. I just saw a hawk in the park. They always remind me of Angelica Houston, as mean as that may sound.
    August…yes…scary since summer seems to be scurrying by. What’s her fucking hurry I wonder.
    Speaking of big meals. I was out with a friend whose husband became furious when she took half her sword fish home. “Really dear,” he said. “It’s not as if we can’t afford to feed you.” Boy, did I want to smack him.

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  17. It’s hard to believe August is upon us. Where did the summer go? When the photo of the garden came up in my reader, I was amazed by your beautiful garden, Kate…then I read the caption. 🙂 We have many hawks in the area, but the critters still remain. I love Val’s blog!

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