Thursday, January 7, 2010

Expand your Vocabulary & It's a Mad Mad Mad Mad World

Greetings from my snowy little town. As you can see from the picture, it truly looks like a postcard. This quaint little place is best enjoyed during the winter, when stews and soups and hot bowls of cocoa are slowly enjoyed. If you are in the area, I highly recommend you visiting the Village Tearoom Restaurant and Bake Shop where everything is homemade and ingredients are local. Best part, the place is family friendly and children are welcome.

While we are in the topic of food (and during winter months that is what most of us do--eat and hibernate), did you know that you can expand your vocabulary and donate rice at the same time? Yes, you heard right. Freerice is one of the few websites where you can actually learn something. Partnered with the United Nations World Food Programme, for each answer you get right, 10 grains of rice are donated to help end hunger. The more correct answers=more rice it can be an addiction you can be proud to announce. I have always been in love with words (shocking eh?) and now I can continue this passion while being altruistic in the donation.

Hint: If you want to diversify your repertoire, click on 'subjects' at the top of the freerice toolbar and test your knowledge on additional areas such as Art and Geography.

Speaking of winter months, we all enjoy a snuggling with our favorite shawl/blanket and watching a good movie. My local library has been spot on when it comes to locating old movies (best part? it's free). Imagine my surprise that "It's a Mad Mad Mad Mad World" was a great choice. Famous comedians star in this madcap (no pun intended) pursuit of $350,000 in stolen cash by a diverse and colorful group of strangers during the early 60s. Jerry Lewis and even The Three Stooges play cameo roles in this movie. I highly recommend something light and funny and even witness the fashion and automobiles during that era.

Until then...keep smiling!

Friday, January 1, 2010

2010..Can we live with less? Yes we can!

Happy New Year!! It is now 2010, and after too many toasts of champagne and good eats, we come to the realization that it is a new year and we need to make changes and resolutions.

I don't know about you, but considering the state of our economy, things are picking up at a snails pace. But what this recession should have taught us (at least it has with me) is that we CAN live with less. Our parents and grandparents did and so can we! My parents came from Greece in the late 60s and when they were children, they hardly had any toys. Their childhood memories were playing marbles, ball, get the idea now. They were outdoors and used their imagination to play various games. I am not wishing to revisit an era that has already happened but as we get older, become parents we ask ourselves "where did we get all this STUFF?"

When I was in my twenties, I was always wanting to consume the latest purse, shoe, beauty item. It was a form of attainment that I would feel justified that I had whatever was "it" But as I have gotten older, I really ask myself: "Why?" I really do not want the latest, just something that is affordable, makes me comfortable in my own skin but most importantly really reading between the lines and looking at quality vs quantity. It does make a difference when you spend a few extra dollars on something that you know will last you a looong time.

Guess what? Purging is very cathatic. I do not want to be one of those hoarders on television where they keep everything. The feeling you get when you donate items (clothes, appliances, shoes..etc.) to your local charities provides such an altruistic emotion in that someone else will benefit. This is something I try and do all the time and no better time than the beginning of a new year. If it isn't making you happy...time to let it go!

We need to live with less.

Until then..keep smiling!!