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Competition

Compete

 

Life is a competition that we compete in from the moment we take our first breath. For most of us it is not noticeable because our body does most of the work automatically. Of course we get help along the way.

I remember how tiny our first born son was with such a big name. I was afraid he would never learn to spell the name Christopher by the time he got to kindergarten. I made up a song that I sang to him frequently so he would know how to spell his name.

Like all parents we helped Chris learn to walk and talk and then we wondered why we rushed the process when he turned out to be a holy terror. We helped his brother Thom to learn to walk and talk, but thankfully he was more subdued.

When Chris built the bomb in the basement to prove to us that he and Thom no longer needed an after school babysitter, it was Thom who called me at work to say I had better come home. Thankfully, home was less than two miles away.

We had lots of games in the house and there was always competition. Steve and I played Scrabble, Chess, Cribbage, family Poker and Steve and the boys played tons of video games. Name calling was never allowed in our house. You win some, you lose some. That’s life.

Life goes on. If we injure a body part such as break a leg, we enter a get well competition until the leg is well and we are back to normal.

I had my knee replaced last year. Regaining my ability to walk and having my body be normal and pain free again was and is a big competition with myself.

Our son Chris is a handsome devil when he works out and “competes every day” with himself. As we get older, life has lots of competitions.

Steve and I recently joined the Nevada Poker League. We are having fun meeting new people and matching our poker skills against other people. We often travel to the games with our good friends and neighbors, Mike and Corky Eden. Of the four of us, I am the least skilled and have the least poker knowledge, but I have won a few games.

In my opinion, poker is a mix of skill and luck. I recently won a game. I was lucky. I had the wining cards. I was happy until Jan looked at me and said “You cheated!” When I said “What do you mean?” She replied, “Oh, I am just teasing.” Jan is normally a very friendly person. Her remark hurt. I thought about it for a week. Jan wins a lot of games. I come along and win a game and she says I cheated.

Sportsmanship is an important game skill. Jan will never be the same happy friendly person I thought her to be. If she doesn’t win, she uses mean, hurtful words that dampen my joy.

Life really is complicated. There is so much to learn. Being kind is the most important skill to learn in our life long competition. May you win all of your self-competitions.

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Alopecia­­­ – Bald is Beautiful

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Alopecia, or spot baldness, can apply to the head or all parts of the body. It is a condition that I became aware of this past year, but Alopecia was first described in 30AD by Cornelius Celsus.  ­­­­It is an easy condition to hide under a wig, but a wig can be difficult for a five year old to manage. Young people often wear hats.

In today’s world, kids with Alopecia are raising their hats and declaring bald is beautiful. Some are even spiking those portions of hair they have left. It’s ok to be an individual.

We attended a benefit to Children’s Alopecia Project in Las Vegas. Wes Winters played the piano which is an understatement. He joined with the piano to produce music in a magical way. His performance was oustanding.

Louie Anderson talked about everyday things, but made the conversation so funny the entire audience was laughing about pigeon jokes. He is a remarkable person.

Magician, Seth Grabel, season six finalist on America’s Got Talent, told jokes, picked pockets, and charmed the audience. He was amazing.

Dat Phan, winner of Last Comic Standing, had the audience laughing uncontrollably as he explained his life in America as a Vietnamese man.

The Alley Cats, a Doowop Group led by Mando Fonseca sang songs from the 50’s and the 60’s . They were oh so good. They invited Gianna and Gabriella Libonati to join them in song. The girls are the daughters of host Michael Libonati leader of the CAP Kid Group Las Vegas Supporters.

We were very happy we attended this benefit to bring awareness of Alopecia to the Las Vegas community.

 

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Birthday Wishes

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Last week I celebrated my birthday. I had a most enjoyable day. I received phone calls, cards in the mail, electronic cards, Twitter greetings, private messages, and Facebook messages. I was taken out to dinner and was given a “homemade” birthday cake.

As I thanked each person for their Facebook greeting, I thought about the person and my connection with them. Memories of happy times we had shared flashed through my mind.  On more than one occasion, people reminded me of times gone by. Oh what a wonderful day I had.

I am thankful that Facebook reminds me of people’s birthdays. I wouldn’t want to forget anyone. My birthday is a big deal to me so I think others like to be remembered. I recently learned that is not true of everyone.

We sent a birthday card to a friend. He said he would appreciate it if we didn’t send anymore cards as it reminds him he is one year closer to the grave. Thankfully, I don’t share his negative attitude.

There is a great deal to know about birthdays. If you want to know more, check out Wikipedia. In the meantime, I hope you have a happy birthday and I hope you enjoy the celebration every year.

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Thrive

 

Houlton High School Class of 1965 Picture by Tabatha Boles
Houlton High School Class of 1965
Picture by Tabatha Boles

You have heard the saying “Today is the first day of the rest of your life.” It really is true. Another saying I like is “Yesterday is gone. Tomorrow is not here yet. Live for today.” If you don’t like your life, change it.

Don’t tell me it is too late and you can’t get around anymore and that you have body parts that don’t work anymore. You have a mind that can do marvelous things. If the body doesn’t work, tell stories about your adventures thus far. YOU have so much to give. Maybe YOU just haven’t realized it yet.

The picture above is from my high school class reunion that I recently attended with my husband Steve. I had a wonderful time rekindling relationships. Rekindling is not exactly the right word. You see in some cases, I have not seen the people I went to school with since we graduated 50 years ago. In that time, most of us have become different people that we were then. I guess you could say, I met new people.

Some people view my life in Las Vegas as exciting and 24 hours of adventure. Although all of that is available here, Steve and I live a rather quiet life. Most people know that we moved here because of the severe allergies I developed in the woods of New Hampshire where we built our retirement home. We moved here for the environment and not the night life.

Fortunately we do not have to stray far from home for adventure. Television provides great adventure right in our living room. The competition of the networks and the many offerings has provided us worldwide travel.

The documentaries of places, countries, events, and life styles is so interesting and very well done. It is almost the same as going there in real life without the expense and the hassle of physical travel. I have a friend who says she watches only documentaries on television.

Being older does not mean being dull. Expand your activities. Write about your life. Explore your world. Connect with people you went to school with. Make new friends. Travel. Just move. Tell me about it. I want to hear your story.

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