Days Blurring Together During Lock-in?

Jail bars

(Have your days and weeks been blurring together?  Does your day go by with nothing special to talk about?  What do you think about my ‘special days’?  Tell me your thoughts and share your stories if you are joining me.)

My days have been just going by without any fanfare and each day is over before I know it.  I guess I can be grateful because it could be that the day drags on with no end in sight.  Even though I have been laid off of both my jobs I can still tell the difference between the weekdays and the weekends.  This is because my husband still has a job. (Knock on wood)

He works from home Monday through Friday, but on the weekends his routine is different.  He isn’t sitting in front of his computer all day and that is how I know the weekend has come.  If it wasn’t for him all my days would feel the same.  I am grateful, though I want to know which day it is on my own without needing to relying on my husband.

A couple of weeks ago, I was watching JazzWeath, a stock market channel on YouTube and it mentioned a nickname for Tuesdays.  They were calling it Turn-Around Tuesdays because the stock market seemed to like to turn around on Tuesdays.  I thought it was cute though didn’t think much more about it.  I heard it again this week.  The next day, I started thinking whether I can have my days have meaning?

So I started to brainstorm what names I could give to the days of the week.  It was harder than I thought because I wanted the first letter of the word I came up with to match the first letter of the day.  I first had to think up activities that I could do each day.  I was looking for words for exercise, learn, and pamper among others.  First, I used a thesaurus to try to find synonyms that would match the letter I wanted to use.

That technique helped with a couple of days, though I couldn’t get all the words I needed.  For the last 2-3, I just started looking through words that started with the day’s first letter.  For example, I was looking through F words for Friday (don’t think dirty) and I found one that could work.  I was so excited.

I figured out words to use and now I have an activity I can do each day.  This way my week won’t just go by with nothing to show for it.  This list might change if I come up with better words to use.  Below I will explain each day.  Though before I share it with you I want to say that Wednesday’s matching word is the one I like the least.  It works, but without the explanation, it sounds negative.

Here it is as it stands on April 27th, 2020.

Meaningful Monday:
Mondays are the beginning of the week.  Make it meaningful by reaching out and doing something nice.  This could be calling a friend, shooting a text to someone you haven’t talked to for a while, giving (sending) a present to a loved one, offering a neighbor some help, or donating to a good cause.  The idea is doing something for someone else to make this day meaningful. Get your creative juices going.

Teasing Tuesday:
It is good to laugh.  On Tuesday find something funny.  A joke, comic, or meme, something that puts a smile on your face.  This day would be better if the laugh was shared with a friend.  Maybe start a Teasing Tuesday exchange?

Withdrawal Wednesday: (I want a better name)
This day is for recharging your batteries.  Some of us are giving a lot of ourselves to family, parents, and just trying to keep everything together.  Some of us are giving too much of ourselves to worrying.  Personally, I am giving too much of myself to YouTube and Netflix.

Withdrawal stands for taking time for yourself.  It could be for 1 hour or half the day.  Think about what you need to refill your batteries so you can take care of the things and people you need to.  For me, it is getting away from the computer and having some quiet time so my brain can get creative.  That makes me happy, though not easy for me to do.

Thankful Thursday:
This is exactly what it sounds like.  Find 5 things to be grateful about.  If it is a really hard day, then one will do.  Some people are having easier times than others as we go through this strange period in history, but there is usually one thing you can find to be grateful for.

Focus Friday:
Being in the house and doing the same thing every day is not the best for us humans.  We are creatures that thrive when we learn new things and move.  Even though sometimes we have to push ourselves to do these activities that are good for us.  Focus Fridays are for finding something new to learn.  You can practice it through the week, but if the week gets away from you just make sure to practice it on Fridays.  Whether for 20 mins or 3 hours it doesn’t matter, just get your brain working and challenge yourself.

Spectacular Saturday:
We are bombarded with bad or uncertain news daily.  Even when we get the news that our cities are going to open up it is still scary.  Today is a day to look for good news.  Find a news article about someone doing good or something good happening in your community or city.  I know I need to hear good news or else I am more fearful and sad.  If nothing else go watch some cute cat videos.  Cats are still around and doing happy things.

Send good vibes Sunday: (Yes, wordy I know.)
This is the day to just send good vibes out into the community, city, and everywhere.  Think about other people and send happy thoughts.  If you have a higher power that you believe in then send the good vibes that direction and let the higher power pass it along.
I am a God girl, so I will be praying for friends, family, and everyone.  What we are going through right now is worldwide.


I know this will go down in the history books and I am so amazed that I am living through a historic event.  I know there will be an end to this and I hope we come out of it stronger and wiser than when we first got locked away.

I think I am about to wrap this up, though first I wanted to tell you that when I was first thinking about words for the days I must have been in a slightly melancholy mood because my first ideas were Sad Saturday, Moody Mondays, Talkback Tuesdays, and Whiney Wednesday.  After writing them down I decided that is not how I want my week to go.  I want to be heading to the positive side of life and not down a dark hole.

I hope you will follow me into positivity and share with me what you will be doing.  If I get my act together I may share this on my other platforms daily.  Instagram may be first, but we will see.  I put a list of my social media names below if you want to check what I decide to do each day.  I am going to try hard to share my progress each day.

Follow me:
Facebook:   Inside Diane’s Life                      Instagram:   insidedianeslife
Twitter:   DeeLitePony  (I know its different and more my personal page)

Today is Monday and today I am going to contact 3 people in my contact list.  Since I have been locked away I have only contacted about 10 out of the 40 people in my contacts.  I plan to start with my friends that begin with the letter A and work on it weekly.  What are you going to do on #MeaningfulMonday ?

Take care everyone and I will be sending you good vibes on Sunday (maybe even before).

Have your days and weeks been blurring together?  Does your day go by with nothing special to talk about?  What do you think about my ‘special days’?  Tell me your thoughts and share your stories if you are joining me.



Easy Investing with Stash App and Why I Like it

(Have you been wanting to invest?  Are you curious about what companies are out there to help?  Are you ready to get started?)

Stash is an investing app that lets you buy fractional shares of ETFs and stocks from many established companies.  Stash makes it easy for investors to get started investing with as little as $5.  They also offer banking, retirement and custodian accounts.  Stash was founded in February 2015.  Eight months later in October 2016, it was launched on the iOS App Store and then on Android in March 2015.  Stash was created by Brandon Krieg, David Ronick, and Ed Robinson.

I actively use four different stock buying apps to trade and invest in stocks.  I use each company for a different reason.  This article is about my thoughts and experiences with Stash.  Stash is an app that I use mostly for investing in individual stocks.  I also have a few EFTs that are in my mix.  I mostly use Stash on my phone but it also can be accessed on my computer.  I prefer the easy access and usability of the phone app.

On my stock trading journey, I believe Stash was the second company that I signed up for.  I wanted it because it let me invest in partial shares instead of buying a whole share when investing.  I also liked it because it didn’t charge me per transaction.  Stash did charge a $1 monthly fee for their services.

Now, many companies have changed their policy and have decided not to charge any transaction fees, though it wasn’t like that when I started.  And at the time I didn’t trust or understood companies that gave away things for free.  It made me feel better and I trusted the company more because I was being charged and the fact I was only paying a dollar per month made it very affordable.

Stash and M1 Finance (I will write about M1 later) are the two companies that I use for long term investing.  I started with being a growth investor but found out that dividend investing is a better fit for me because I want monthly income when I go RVing.

I love my Stash.  It is the app I put most of my money in because it is so easy and I get to pick which stock I will buy.  I also have 4 stocks that are connected to Stash’s auto-deposit.  With this feature Stash puts $ (my choice) in the stocks I put on auto.  This feature has helped me keep my investing more consistent.

What are all the reasons I love my Stash?

*I love that I can just invest $5  (This has been a game-changer- mostly mentally)

*I love the numbers and feedback it gives me.  It tells me how much I have invested, how many shares I own and how much I have earned by growth in $ and %.  When the % goes down I can decide if I want to buy more.  This is made for my personality.

*Once my dividends reach $1, Stash will take out the monthly payment from the dividends instead of my bank account.

**Once my dividends reach $5 I can decide which stock I want to buy with my free/earned dividend money.

*They offer well-known Company stocks and EFTs that I can choose from. (I have looked for stocks that they don’t carry.  Most are newer, IPOs or more risky stocks)  I have found most of the ones I want.  KO, JNJ, Pepsi, Apple, Amazon, Microsoft, Google, etc…   If you are looking for an established company than they should have it.  Many people choose EFTs because they usually come with less risk.  Stash has many EFTs to choose from.
This is my all-time favorite investing app so far.  It is not perfect and has some things that I don’t like, but I am super happy with this app.

I have not tried taking any money out yet.  I have sold a stock but then reinvested the money into another stock.  Though when I was investigating this Company I found a few reviews about some people who had decided not to use the app anymore and they claim the company kept charging them the $1 monthly fee.  The reviews didn’t say how they notified the company about stopping their use.  They might have just deleted the app and expected the charges to stop or maybe they did end their membership properly and the company messed up?  I do not know.

Since I knew I wanted to be a long term investor, which meant that I planned to stay with the company, that it wasn’t going to be a problem I would have to deal with and joined.  Best decision I have made.  If only this was around 20 years ago I would have so much money in stocks.  I can dream.  Picking up Amazon at $50 would have been awesome!

My biggest headache is that once you put in your order it takes a while to get the order filled.  Sometimes the price goes up during that time, though sometimes it goes down.  I have come to terms with it because I figure it evens out over time.  Plus I only invest $5 at a time.

As I am writing this it seems like they have a morning window (about 8-9) when they trade and an afternoon window (near closing) when they trade.  I take this into account when buying a partial stock knowing I am not going to get the price I am looking at.  Though mentally I remind myself that I am buying maybe 0.005- 0.1 of a share and not a full share.  It helps me to not panic if the price goes up because even if I bought it at a higher price I may have paid an extra 10 cents instead of an extra $4 (if it was a whole share).

If you want to get into stock trading this has been a great tool for me.  This site is made for long term investing and not for day or swing trading.  Also know that the stock markets will go up and down, though if you invest in EFTs or Companies you trust to be around for the next 10-20 years, then the dips don’t matter as much.  Most investors are excited to buy more of their stocks when they go ‘on sale’.  I have picked up some more stocks at a discount lately.  Only invest money that you don’t need.

As I am writing this the stock markets are taking a hit.  I have gone through 2 smaller dips now where my balance was in the negative.  They were emotional to get through and this one is a lot bigger.  In the middle of February my profit in Stash was almost $2000, 2/27 it dropped below $1000 and in March my balance dropped to negative $400.  That made my heart flutter a little.  I made sure to only invest the money I would not need.  What this means to me is if the stock market went away tomorrow and I lost all the money it wouldn’t affect my life at all.  I love stocks and would miss it, but financially it wouldn’t hurt me.  Well, my ego would feel the loss of the money though.

If you have been thinking about investing then starting it when the stocks are lower may be a good time to get in.  If you do it through my link then I believe we both get an extra $5 to invest.  If you don’t know how to pick a company yet or anything yet, then start studying stocks and how to invest.  Many people will invest in EFTs so they can be diversified and have less risk.  Since I love dividends my favorite EFT is SCHD.  There are many good EFTs out there though.  If you put in your risk tolerance into the  Stash App it will help you pick some stocks.  I do not know enough to give financial advice.  I watch a lot of videos about investing and I still have a lot to learn.  But at least now I am in the game and so happy about it.

Stash app affiliate link:

Have you been wanting to invest?  Are you curious about what companies are out there to help?  Are you ready to get started?

Work Ethic: I have Two Different Personalities

(Do you want to work or get a project done at home?  What is your ‘home’ work ethic like? Do you have tricks?)

I consider myself a good worker.  When I am at work I try not to slack off and I am usually on the go.  When the regular tasks are done I usually look for something else to do.  Sitting still does not feel right.

I consider myself a lazy worker.  When I know I need to get things done I will procrastinate.  I will do things that really don’t need to be done (busy work), rest or be on my phone/computer.  Many days go by and I haven’t even hit the things I told myself that needed to be done.

Are you one of these?  I happen to be both.  I am the productive one when I leave the house and someone is paying me to do a job.  I believe if I stop working, then I shouldn’t be getting paid.  So, I am a workhorse.

The lazy me is when I get home.  Doing chores, a To Do List, learning or trying to get my online business going is like pulling teeth.  I am the procrastination queen.
How can I have such different personalities?

mom-mask    (Picture drawn by my daughter.  Love her.)

I think there are two reasons for it.  The first is when I go to work I am working for someone else.  I am taking someone’s money to have me do certain duties.  I don’t like to let people down and I want them to appreciate that I work for them.  On the job I am not suppose to be distracted by my phone or computer.  That makes it easier to focus on work and get things done.

It is so much easier for me to slack off when I am trying to work from home.  I equate home to time off.  So working from home seems like the wrong thing to do.  Plus at home I have so many things that can distract me and does distract me.  I have to be my own boss and the boss I am at home is very lenient one.

The boss (me) may reprimand me, though I know I can not get fired, and since chores or working online (at the beginning) is not making me any money, then I am not worried about money being taken away from me.  Even with those 2 reasons I am still surprised how different my work ethic is when working at home.  I have been trying for what it seems like forever to get myself more motivated.  To take action.

In fact writing this right now is making me happy.  Even in the back of my head my brain is trying to get me to stop and watch a YouTube video about HOW TO DEVELOP AN INSANE WORK ETHIC.  In fact, what I just need to do is finish this blog post and that would be me practicing this ‘home’ work ethic I am suppose to be strengthening.

I also watched a video about a week ago about how most people believe they need motivation to have action, but this video said you can also do the action first and motivation will usually show up.

That is what I am relying on right now.  I am doing the action of writing this and as I get more written hopefully the motivation will kick in for me to finish it quickly and post it.

For those of you out there that are thinking why doesn’t she ‘Just Do It’, I have been trying for decades to fix my procrastination problem.  If you are the ‘Just Do It’ type of person then I commend you.  I am the other type of person (so far) that tells myself to do it, but starts to get overwhelmed as soon as I think about taking action.  And if I feel overwhelmed then I will find other things to do that is easier.

Bad… yes.   My reality… yes.   (for now)

I will keep on working on this problem.  I figure I haven’t lost the fight unless I give up.  I will go now and see if I can get INSANE work ethic from that video.  Hope me luck.

(Side note:  I have just hit 50 followers.  I want to thank you all for coming along on my journey.  I will fight this procrastination problem and get more consistent with my blogging.  Hang in there…. I am working on it.  The funny thing is this is my 50th post I have written and posted.  That averages out to one follower per post.  LOL )

Do you want to work or get something done at home? What is your ;home’ work ethic like? Do you have tricks?

ROBINHOOD APP: 19 Months Into My Trading Journey

(How has your trading journey been going?  Have you started yet?)

I am so grateful for online trading apps because without them I don’t think I would have ever started investing.  They are so easy to use and since I am not a techie, if I can do it than I think anyone can.

So let’s get into my progress, though  I am warning you that it is not pretty.  I opened a Robinhood account with $100 and during that time I think I have gotten about .40 in dividends.  For me to get to the place where I break even I will need to bring my account back to $100.40.  As I will show you I am far from that amount.

My current account balance as I am writing this is $54.71.  It is hard to admit, but the account actually got down to $47.29.  I have been slowly trying to pick better stocks and stick with them.  It is definitely not day trading.  The last 2 stocks I got went down after I bought them (of course), but I was almost positive they would go up because they were in an upward trend and had no bad news to make them fall.  I held onto them for about 4 weeks before they finally came up and sold for the price I was asking for.

It was so hard to wait.  In fact I almost sold out of one of the stocks for a loss about 3 days before it’s price hit the selling point I had set.  This is how I lost most of my money in the first place. I lost money by not trusting my decision on buying the stock and selling for a loss.  The second mistake was if I was going to sell I would hold onto the stock too long and sell it for a bigger loss. I often felt so good about my wins and then lose bigger than what I just won.  I need to practice having a stop loss price that is set in stone before I buy a stock.  Since I haven’t done that regularly I lose more than I should.

So, here is what my account looks like from the beginning.


I was finally going to show you that I was gaining some ground and then my stock took a small dive.  Of course it happened a day after I bought it.  It drives me nuts how often this happens.  Though unless I hear bad news about the company, then I will hold onto the stock.

IMG_20191114_094612 UGH!

As you can tell that after 19 months I am far from being a good day trader.  In fact I can’t become a real day trader unless I have $25,000 in my account.  Since I have less than that I am only able to have a max of 3 day trades within 5 trading days.  I love Robinhood because sometimes I lose track of how many day trades I have done and the app gives me a warning that I had hit my limit.

I have not been a good day trader because I am not doing the research and putting in the time to do better trades.  Many mornings I have a job I need to go to and I am just not interested in getting up really early to trade before going to work.  Then once I am at work I am not able to get into and out of stocks in a timely fashion since I am working.  So at this time, I am not too interested in Day or Swing trading.

What I am getting interested in is Dividend and Growth investing.  For my lifestyle right now, this is more my speed.  The apps I am using for these are Stash and M1 Finance.
Like I said at the beginning, I love these investing apps.  They make investing so easy. You still need to be careful what you are investing in, but the ease is amazing.

I hope when I get more free time I will look more into day/swing trading because I still think I would love to watch the charts and news (never thought that would be true) and use techniques to predict the direction of a stock.  Until then, I will just invest in stocks I feel secure about and hold long term.  I plan to share my experience with the Robinhood, Stash, M1 Finance, and Webull apps in upcoming posts.

In case you are interested in starting your own journey with investing (Do research and start with a small amount of money so you can practice) here are my links to sign up with these investing apps that I am using.  If you sign up through someone’s referral, then you get a bonus when you sign up (I get a bonus too if you use my referral.)  So, if you would like a free gift use one of these links below. (copy and paste)

M1 Finance:

How has your trading journey been going?  Have you started yet?

A Visual To Do List

(How do you keep track of all the things you want to do?  Lists/journal/calendars?)

So this is what I bought.  What do I have planned?

IMG_20190924_132748   Ignore the clipboard.

This all started with a video I watched on YouTube.  It was talking about how not all people organize the same way.  The speaker said she discovered four different ways people prefer to organize.

There are two main styles.  Some people want their items put away where it can’t be seen: closets/cupboards/file cabinets/drawers.  And there are some people that need their things organized out in the open where they can see the items.

Then there are two subcategories to organize farther.  Both subcategories have to do with organizing by liked items.   The first organizing category is to have everything in its own place.   EX.  This would be having a filing drawer for bills, with each type of bill having their own folder: car payments, light payments, credit card payments and so on.  The second category is less detailed.  EX.  This filing drawer would have one folder with all the bills no matter where they came from.

It dawned on me that I think I am mostly an out in the open type of organizer (except in the kitchen).  If something is out of sight, then I am very likely to forget about it.  That is how I end up buying double of things I already have.  My subcategory is I want everything to have its own place, though I think I am too lazy for that.  I will not know for sure till I actually get more organized with my stuff.

When my husband got home that night I told him about the video and told him I think I am the kind of person that need things organized out in the open.  His response was, ‘Yes! (duh)’  Like I should have know that all along.  Though it was right that second that it dawned on me how true that was.  My favorite quotes are taped to my bedroom wall, my personal goals are taped to the wall behind the computer and now this new project.

I usually write my to do list in a flip folder (a process I learned about 4 years ago from a YouTuber – forgot his name) along with some other information.   After writing my To Do List I usually put the notebook aside.  Once I put it aside and not have it right in front of me the % of me getting my list down has dropped 80%.  It is awful.  I put the work into making the list and then actually forget all about it as other things during the day take my attention.

I was thinking that I needed something more in my face.  Something that was hard for me to ignore.  This is when this idea came to me.

It took me a few days thinking about the concept before going to the store and even then I didn’t know exactly what would work.  The first picture (above) is what I ended up coming home with.  And this is what I ended up making.

IMG_20190926_135412  The purple and red one are for the activities I want to get done on a weekly bases.

Let me explain how it works.  I write on little post-its the activity I want to do.  It starts in the top blue area each morning.  As I do them during the day I move the activity post-it to the green area.  By the end of each day I can see how much I have gotten done and how much I didn’t.

This really helps me on tough days where it feels like I got nothing done during the day.  Looking at the Visual To Do List I can see that I have moved tabbies into the green.  That means at least I got something done during the day.  It makes me feel better.


Also, at the end of the night, if I still have several things to do, I can usually fit 1-3 more things in before I head to bed.  Since starting this I have drank more water in the last month than I have in the last 6 months.  Health wise it has really helped.

I was worried that the little post-its would only be able to be moved a few times before losing their stickiness.  It has been a month now and my original ones are still working.  I made sure to buy something that had a more plastic surface (less porous) and not paper.  That way the post-its last longer.

In another part of the house I have used plastic page protectors and colored printer paper.  So if you can’t find the right plasticky dividers, then use the page protectors since they are easier to locate.


What things did I write on my post-its?  I wrote things I want to do on a daily bases.  The blue post-its are health related and the orange are chores.  I plan to add more if this is something I will keep doing, though I knew not to overdue it or else it would be too hard to make it a habit.

IMG_20191025_080801  There are 8 waters, 2 exercises, a fruit and a veggie for health (blue).  Chores (orange) includes: clean cat box (I want to do it before my husband does it.), wash dishes and put away dishes.  I am not much of a house keeper.

Side note:  When I first started I only had 4 waters on the chart, though I decided to do 8 because in the future my goal is to drink 8 glasses of water.  Right now those water post-its do not relate to cups of water.  Again, if I started too hard I would not do it.  Each water is worth 5 swallows of water.  Every time I drink water and take 5+ big swallows, then I can move the tab to the green.  Because I chose to start with little steps I am drinking much more water now.

You will want to make this chart personal to you and your situation by picking activities you want to get done on a daily bases.

The system has been working for me, but not as well as I hoped.  It has been over a month and I am still using it, though it is easy to ignore since it is not the only thing I have on my wall.  I will say getting something colorful has helped it stand out a lot.  I still have to make an effort to look at the list and get it done.  It is so easy to make other choices.  Example:  Drinking coffee instead of my water.  And not carving out time to do proper exercises.

I know I am a creature of habit, so I just need to make it into a habit.  Easy Peesy, right?

How do you keep track of all the things you want to do?  Lists/journal/calendars?


Proverbs 28:6 Integrity

Proverbs 28:6 – Better is a poor man who walks in his integrity than a rich man who is crooked in his ways.  I just came across this one today and it caught my eye.

The first thing I took from this was the word integrity.  The definition of integrity is the quality of being honest and having strong morals.  Other synonyms for integrity are honor, uprightness, noble, ethics, virtue, and decency.  It is said in the 10 commandments ‘Thou shalt not lie.’  Of course, since this is in the Commandments God will still think it is important for people to have integrity.

The next thing that got my attention was he was comparing being poor with being rich.    That you working hard to get a better and luxurious life for you and your family doesn’t mean a whole lot to God if you have lost your honesty.

The fact that being poor is just the money position you are in, but not who you are.  You can choose to be honest or a crook no matter how much money you have.  God is looking to see what kind of person you are inside and not how many possessions you own.

Another thing I started thinking was that many rich people give money to help others.  Some would do this to show their standing in the community, though I hope most from the goodness of their hearts.  So, God knowing this He still puts more praise on a poor person, who can’t give much money, who has lived his life with integrity.

In my personal life, I try so hard not to lie.  I do catch a white lie come out of my mouth off and on when I don’t want to hurt someone’s feelings.  Even these are few and far between.  I have told a couple of bigger lies in my past and I don’t like the way they make me feel.  When I did get caught lying, as a child, I did not like it.  And knowing that God doesn’t approve of lying helps me keep on the straight and narrow.

Some time in my childhood or teenhood I decided to not make a promise that I couldn’t guarantee that I could keep.  One promise I have made is when I told my daughter that I will always love her.  I can’t believe this ever being untrue.  I remember making my friends upset when I wouldn’t promise to do something or keep a secret.  I would give my word which had a lot of value, but not a promise.

How are you living your life with integrity?  What do you think about this scripture?

Philippines Trip: The Weather

I was very worried about the heat in the Philippines.  I am only a sun person if the sun is shining and it is about 65 degrees or lower.  Anything much hotter and you will find me in the house, shade or water.

My sister in law picked January to go because that is before it really starts to get hot.  The mildest weather is from December to February.  During March and April the heat increases.  Last year, in March and April most of the days were between 90 to 95 degrees.  It is not uncommon to have an occasional day that can reach 100 degrees during the hot months.  But it is the humidity that you have to watch out for.

We stayed in Lucina first and the temperature during that part of the stay was 84 to 89 degrees.  Humidity is the most comfortable for Americans between 30 to 50%.  When I was in the Philippines the humidity was about 65%.  I don’t think I really felt the difference mentally, though I think my body noticed.

One day, we left the hotel and walked about 4-5 blocks to a drug store to pick up some supplies.  It was hot outside, though we were walking partly in the shade.  Once we got in the store it was kind of cool.  I won’t say air conditioned, but it did feel better than outside.

Walking back to the hotel I was feeling OK.  Hot but OK.  Once back at the hotel we had to climb 3 flights of stairs to get to our hotel room on the 3rd floor.  As I climbed these stairs the temperature got hotter with each floor.  By the time I was at my room I was very over heated.

I walked into the room, locked the door and took off my shoes and socks.  That didn’t help so next my pants came off.  Yes, I was walking around the hot Philippines in pants.  I don’t own much summer wear and I hardly walk around in shorts at home.  I was feeling sick.  I tried to drink some water and then lay on the bed.  I did not move from the bed for about 20 minutes.  I was just letting my body relax and enjoy the air conditioning we had in the room.  That air conditioning saved me.

Going into this trip heat was a major concern for me.  I know that I am not good in the heat and if it wasn’t for visiting relatives, then we would not have gone.  Luckily, the days I visited my father in law’s place it was not too bad.  If I got hot in the house, which had no air conditioning, I would go out to his back yard which was shaded by trees.

1548053209390  Father in laws yard.  All dirt, though the trees were great.

One of the cooler days, while visiting my father in law, when it was about 84 degrees my father in law asked if we could shut the door because it was chilly.  He is really use to the heat now.  He moved back to the Philippines about 10 years ago?  I just looked at him and thought, too cold?

While we were in Lucina I mostly stayed out of the sun or inside where there was air conditioning.  I was very lucky to have a small balcony in my hotel room.  I saw a lot of people and vehicles from that balcony.  Plus, I could go out on the balcony till I started to get hot and then walk right back into my air conditioned room.  The direct sun did not touch my balcony so I was able to stay out longer.  It was the best hotel room for me.

The last part of our trip was going to El Nido and taking a boat to a resort on Miniloc Island.  The temperatures were still hot, though most of the time there was a tropical breeze that made it feel tolerable, even nice at times, if I stayed out of the sun.  It felt like 70-75 degrees to me in the shade during the day.  Though, as soon as I walked out into the sun it felt SO much hotter.  Again, I tried to stay out of the sun and I was pretty successful.

I only put on a little bit of sun screen, so I wouldn’t pollute the ocean.  I made sure it was on my face and then my back when I went snorkeling.  I only got a slight baseball sized burn on my right arm (weird) and I got burned on my nose and forehead a little.  I was very pleased.

Again, at the resort cottage we had air conditioning and a balcony.  I got to do a lot of people watching from the balcony.  This balcony had a little couch on it so it was so comfy.  I loved our little water cottage.  If you come you may not want to stay in #7 because the water doesn’t reach the water cottage.  So, we had no fish to look at.  We did get to watch little crabs digging homes.  They were so cute.

1548722513939  #7 is the one on the right with no water.

Now back to the weather.  One of the people I traveled with loves the heat.  She goes to Las Vegas often and will sit in the sun around the pool, so the sun doesn’t bother her.  I am not sure if the sun was stronger here or if the breeze just made it feel cooler.  She ended up with skin like a lobster.  She was very painful.

So just be careful when dealing with a different climate then you are used to.  I knew I needed to stay out of the heat and sun as much as possible.  This meant that I ducked out on some activities because I knew it would be too much for me.

I made it through the heat with almost no trouble except for the one incident of being overheated.  I made it through the sunny days with hardly any sunburns.  I stayed in the shade whenever possible..  And even though I did a little less I had so much fun and experienced so many new things.

I survived the weather on vacation.  What I think is funny is that 4 days after being back home it got cold and started to snow.  We don’t get snow here often and I have had snow in front of my house for 5 days and it is snowing again and is to last about 5 more days.  This is the biggest snow our place has had in years.  The  news says it is the most snow in February since 1923.  That is almost 100 years ago.  I had so much fun in the snow!

My body was wondering what the heck was happening.  The first couple of days after returning home I kept trying to leave the house without a coat.  As soon as I would open the door I would realize that I was not in the tropics any more.

What kind of weather do you prefer to be in?

Philippines Trip: Get Ready – Travel

(What is your favorite part of planning a vacation?)

To get ready for a trip especially a big trip you need to do a lot of planning and packing.  First you plan where you are going to go, how you are going to get there, where you will stay while you are there, and how you are going to get around.  Then you need to figure out what activities you are going to do once you get there.

For this trip I didn’t do any of this.  I was feeling a lot of stress as the trip was getting closer and then about a day before leaving I figured out that the majority of the stress was coming from me not knowing what was planned.    How did this happen you may be wondering?

The trip was planned by my sister-in-law.  She asked us some questions, though all the hotels, transportation, and everything were planned by her.  Some of the stress I was feeling was the fact that I was not in control.  When we go on vacation I am usually the one to make the travel and the activities plans.  It was strange to not have that role.

I was also experiencing stress due to the fact that I was going to another country that was very foreign to me.  I was worried about the long plane ride, about what kinds of food they had, about homeless children looking at me sadly and me wanting to bring them home, about not speaking the language, and about the heat that I was going to have to live through.  Have I mention that the heat and I are not the best of friends?  We are not!

The day has come and I am just now starting to pack, without a list.  I always have a list, so I took 5 mins and made a quick list.  Even the quick list came in handy and I am so glad I quickly made it.  I packed.  Luckily, I had till 7 pm to get all my stuff together.  I needed all day.

I was very lucky to travel with relatives that knew what was going on and had all the tickets and travel plans.  They came to pick my husband and I up at home and took us downtown so we all could catch the Light Rail to the airport.  It was the first time I have ridden the light rail and I was nervous about that even though I was still in my home town.
1547871833358  Light Rail in background
The whole day I was feeling nauseous off and on due to nerves and it continued as I was waiting for the light rail.  Once we got on the light rail my nauseous stomach started to calm down because it was being replaced by excitement.

When it was time to get on the airplane I felt scared and exhilarated.  I was felt hyper in the plane.  I didn’t want to belt myself in till the last minute.  I was on my knees in my seat looking at all my fellow passengers.  I am pretty sure that the person behind me was probably thinking I was weird.  It didn’t help that I could not stop smiling.

1547883428275      My Plane!             1547885746434

Once belted in I was mentally getting ready for a 13 hour plane ride.  I think the longest I have been in a plane is about 3 hours.  I had a game plan.  I had taken aspirin for 2 days before to thin my blood a little to help reduce getting a clot and I had decided that every time I went to the restroom I would do squats to help my blood flow.  I ended up visiting the facilities 3 times and did 15 squats each time.  I really think it help me not be so sore.

I brought a book to read since I had so much time to kill.  Though they had onboard movies, TV shows, screen games to play, and a map I could watch the plane’s progress across the ocean that kept me occupied.  I read about the first 2 pages of the book and that was it.

We had a layover in Taipei.  The next plane ride was only a couple of hours to get us to the Philippines.  That was an easy flight.

I decided that I would be smart and plan when I was going to sleep on the plane ride, so that I would land in the Philippines with me almost on their time.  It worked!  That night I was actually falling asleep while we were at dinner.  Luckily, the restaurant was in our hotel, so I excused myself early and went to bed.  The next morning I was on Philippine time.  (I didn’t do that on the way home.  I will talk about that in a different post.)

I survived the 16+ hour travel time that I was so worried about.  It was really easy.  It was a bit tiring and boring during the layover, but not bad at all.  My legs got a little sore sitting so long, though doing those squats on the plane really helped.  If I should do this kind of traveling again I will not be so worried about travel time.  I know what it is like and that I can survive it.

What is your favorite part of planning a vacation?

Happy New Year 2019

(What do you want to achieve this year?)

I keep fighting to make my life and self better, though those bad habits, procrastination, laziness, and being unfocused, keep creeping back into my life.  I tell myself as long as I don’t give up then I will continue to improve and learn even if it is slower than I want.

I have heard the saying, ‘Tomorrow is a new day.’  So, each morning when I wake up I have the choice to make the changes I need for a better future.  In society and with me ‘Mondays’ seem to be more powerful than just tomorrow.

On Monday I will start to change my life.  I seem to renew my goals for a Monday more often than any other day.  Though starting on New Year Day is the most powerful of all to me.

The week leading up to New Years I make sure I have evaluated how I did on my resolutions for the year ending and think hard about what I want for the new year.  I have always kept my resolutions on my wall in my bedroom so I can read them easily.  Even though they are within view I start to ignore them as the year passes.

This year they are on my wall right behind my computer so I will be staring at them almost daily.  For the first time this year I wrote words around the edge of my Resolutions.  So, even though I don’t stop to read the actual resolutions I see the words in bright pink.

The words are Create  Focus  Productivity.  At the bottom is a word that I believe that if I follow the action of these words I will achieve.  Freedom

A New Year is here and I am so stoked.  Though in the back of my mind a voice is trying to break through to say.  You will fail.  You know you’ll fall right back into your old habits.  As I was writing this I thought of the lyric from This is Me,  ‘I will take a flood and drown them out!’

I watched The Greatest Showman on Jan 2nd and it has given me a message right when I needed it.  The movie is about having dreams and fighting for them no matter how often you get knocked down.  It is about accepting yourself as you are.  It is about not giving up.  These were messages I needed to hear going into 2019.

I am excited about the direction I want to go with my online journey.  Again, as every year I will take my 2019 resolutions off the wall after Christmas and evaluate how much I have accomplished with each one. 

I am expecting 2019 to be a great year.  Hang around and see what happens.

Happy New Year Everyone!

What do you want to achieve this year?

Barnes & Noble: A Store I Love

Barnes and Noble

(Do you love Barnes & Noble or do you have your own favorite book store?)

I found out 5 days ago that my neighborhood Barnes and Noble is going to close in 1 month.  The day I found out I was crying off and on all day.  The unhappiness lasted through the weekend.  I can’t imagine the store not being here.  I haven’t been coming as often as when I was homeschooling, but it is one of my favorite places to go.   I will be missing many things in this store.

I decided to try to get here as often as I can before they close.  In fact, I decided to bring my computer today and write a blog post.  I was wondering what I was going to write about and I decided why not write about my beloved book store.  

Right now I am sitting in their Starbucks looking out onto the magazine section.  I have heard many years ago that magazines were dying out.  Looking at this section you would never know it.  This store has 3 isles of magazines.  Even though I am not much of a magazine person I love perusing the titles.  There are magazines written for almost every topic.

I will be missing the laid back feel I get when I come here.  I walk through the front doors and I feel a calm come over me.  In this hustle and bustle world this is my reprieve.  I don’t come here nearly enough for my liking because the world keeps calling me away.

Well, now my choice is being taken away.  I didn’t come here enough, though I knew it was here for me when I was able to break away and come to my favorite store.  Now what am I going to do?

 I love books and I love the library, though you have to be quiet in the library.  Sitting here I love to hear the chatter of conversations.  Children talking about a book they are looking at.  Also, if I happen to sneeze or squeak my chair I am not disturbing the whole place.

I love being around real books.  To see how many authors there are out there is amazing.  Then to realize how much work must have went into writing each of these books.  The authors share a part of themselves and their knowledge in each book.  I get awed looking around.  And someday I hope to be a book author and have people see my stories.  But for now I am happy to be around other authors.      

I like to walk up and down the aisles and see topics that one day I would like to learn more about or seeing books on topics that I can’t believe got published.  I learn thing just walking the aisles without even opening a book.  And when I find the book I want to read it feels like I found a treasure.  I am excited to get home and start reading.

My senses are at work when I walk the aisles also.  The smell of new books and the rainbow of colors on the shelves is part of the experience.  It feels magical to me to walk up and down the rows of books. 

I will really miss this place.  I don’t know where else I can go that is close to home that will give me the calm feeling and happiness I feel when I come here.  Why is this happening?  Why is Barnes & Noble closing?  Borders couldn’t survive.  And now is Barnes and Noble following suit?  As I look around I see that this store hasn’t changed much.  They have been here 13 years and during that time they got a Starbucks put in.  The overall layout and feel is about the same.

They have a real good size Music and DVD section.  I know people are still buying them though they are buying them less due to so many other choices.  I see no technology in this place.  The newer generation is growing with tech in their hand. 

As I sit here and look around about 80% of the people I see are 50 and above.  About 5% are children.  10 % are people about 30 years old.  Where are the young people?  (lol … two teens just walked in.  I wonder what section they are headed toward?)

I want B&N to start fighting.  I want them in get creative and innovative to get the younger crowd in without destroying what the older crowd loves.  I want everyone to realize what a great place a book store can be.

That is my hope.  That someone, hopefully, Barnes and Noble will come up with the perfect formula so I can still come and be surrounded by my beloved books.  I do own a nook, so lately more of my books are electronic, but that is because my house is full of books and I don’t have room for more.  Yet!  I hope to build a little library in my house, but that has been a dream for about 15 years now and it hasn’t happened yet. 

I hope to buy a new Nook before this store closes.  I love my nook!  It is one of the best things I have ever bought. (I actually think I got it for Christmas, but it was on my list.)  Though going through a list of books to decide what I am going to read next is not exciting.  I often take my Nook to B&N and look around the store and when I see something I like I will look it up on the Nook, read the comments, or start reading it.  The nook lets me read for a little while before I need to buy the book when I am in the store. 

 Well, good-bye store.  I will have many fond memories, though I will be sad every time I pass by this building.  What will take your place?  I know nothing that will give me the same feeling.  Barnes and Noble fight to keep your hold on all the stores you have left.  Fight to get creative and think out of the box to be competitive in this market place.

Get it together so you can come back to my neighborhood and reopen a store.  I will miss you greatly.  Good luck in your journey.

Do you love Barnes & Noble or do you have your own favorite book store?