Excitement

Life without excitement is like champagne without bubbles, it has lost its appeal and attraction. Would we drink flat champagne? Of course not! So why do we think that sometimes we have to live a life without excitement?

In the various stages of our life we are attracted and enthralled by different things, and our excitement changes as well. The simple things, which are so exciting for a young child, become bolder and usually more costly with increasing age. But one fact remains the same: we feel that we can conquer the world, and that there are no limitations. Everything seems possible; we are riding the waves of life feeling the wind in our hair and the energy flowing through us. It is like a drug and we want more. Do you remember your first date? The excitement of getting ready, your beating heart and you couldn’t think of anything else? Yes, at that moment you drank bubbly champagne and enjoyed every moment of it.

There is never a reason to drink flat champagne, we are always worth a good bubbly. And if you find yourself asking the question why the world became so bland or why you became so blasé, then it is time to lighten up and bring some spice into your life.  Do something you have never done but always wanted to do. A cruise? Riding a horse? Buying a sports car? Taking dance lessons to become the dancer you always wanted to be? Let your imagination fly, feel the excitement, and soar like an eagle. Excitement is what keeps us young and going strong.

Excitement can be laced with fear and doubts, but the thrill of being excited is worth the trepidations. Excitement is contagious, we like to be around people ready to embrace life’s many opportunities and challenges, and just listening to them gives birth to our own excitement. I fondly remember a recent get together with friends during which they enthusiastically talked about the safari they had planned. My love and passion for Africa started stirring, and I found myself googling safari possibilities, imagining myself in Africa and it was like taking a short mini trip. Yes, reality had to set in a little later, but the excitement of those moments cannot be replaced and I still cherish them.

So, what are you waiting for? Pop the cork and enjoy your bubbly! Live and enjoy the moment and some excitement regularly.

Silvia Coggin, CPC
Founder and Author of NotJustCooking.com

 

Smiling

SmilingI wrote earlier this year about Happy Moments, and today I want to add Smiling. Smiles are important and bring us an immediate, positive change and make us feel better.

I have decided to smile no matter what. Sometimes I forget, but when I realize that my mouth is tending down and my thoughts are gloomy, I put a smile on my face and consciously change my thoughts. I smile at people I pass on my way, and it is amazing how most of them will smile back at me. I consider their smiles as a gift and treasure them immensely. No words have to be exchanged, just a smile is all it takes to bring a change. I look at it like a ray of sunshine on a cloudy day. The more rays, the fewer clouds and pretty soon my sky is sunny and all is well.

It all starts with lifting the corners of your mouth and putting a smile on your face. You immediately feel a change in how you feel. It is still a cloudy day, but it brings hope the sun will break through and disperse the dark clouds.

While writing this blog I have had a smile on my face that I hope you can feel as you are reading. The sun is coming through and my heart is beginning to sing.

Smiles are free, and they are a gift you can give to anyone. When I feel that I need more help than just putting a smile on my face, I add a mantra. I repeat it a few times and together with my smile my attitude changes and I am in full sunshine and feel blessed. Here is the mantra I like to use, but please compose your own. Your mantra should have meaning to you and can consist of just a few words or a sentence or rhyme like below. The key is that you can repeat it with feeling.

I let resistance go,
And love and wellness flow.
I am, I am, I am.
I am one with God my Source.
I am.

You can sing it, say it aloud, or just repeat it in your mind. It is powerful and helps you find balance and harmony.

Life is worth living to the fullest. Troublesome things happen, but it is up to you to get yourself back to a smooth and happy place. Smiling helps!

Silvia Coggin, CPC
Author and Founder of NotJustCooking.com

Romeo and Juliet

Romeo and JulietAlthough I didn’t feel like Juliet when little Romeo joined our family, in his eyes I am definitely his Juliet. He is so much in love with me that he follows me around like a little shadow. He senses my emotions and while he is only a 9 ½ month old puppy, he is tuned in and has become my protector. He is so precious. For example, he stands guard at the sliding door when I am outside in the hot tub, and I am sure he would quickly summon his daddy should he perceive any danger to me. It touches me deeply and I cannot imagine my life without him.

He is maturing into a strapping and handsome young man, but  he still has a lot of puppy in him. What a difference between a Yorkie girl and a Yorkie boy. He is about the same size as our last girl, little Mignonne, but his strength is unbelievable and he has a vastly different personality from all our Yorkie girls. He is foremost a lover, but he shows a strong macho tendency as well.  His training is progressing nicely but still needs some work. He loves to play, chew, and run. He is into everything and has an insatiable curiosity.  Friday night he decided to empty the dirt from a flowerpot. Our housekeeper had left a few hours before leaving a sparkling clean home, and we ended up vacuuming and steaming the kitchen floors at 10 o’clock in the evening.  But there is no way to be mad at Romeo when one sees his loving eyes and sweet face proclaiming pride in his “flowerpot” caper. So we still need a little behavioral modification – but not much!

I have long forgotten my concern about raising a little boy, and am so grateful for this new experience. I loved all our little furry companions, and they all loved me back in different ways with their captivating personalities. Yorkies have enhanced my life over 40 years.  Romeo will likely be the last one, and we will have been blessed with four girls and one boy. It is and has been perfect and I wouldn’t change a thing.

Being a Juliet to our little guy is touching and rewarding. But I am also very aware of my responsibility to maintain harmony and balance around him. He helps me to grow spiritually by making me aware when my thoughts are negative and unaligned so I can replace them with positive and uplifting ones. He is my devoted little teacher.

My deep feelings for animals are unlimited, and dogs have a special place in my heart. Since my first Yorkie Sunny, a little sweet girl I brought to the United States from Europe, my love affair with Yorkies has flourished. It is a breed I adore and cherish, and Romeo is the perfect little boy to close the circle. He fills my heart with awe and adoration. When I look at him, I can only smile. He is my little lover, hero and healer.

I love my little Romeo and I am delighted being his Juliet!

Silvia Coggin, CPC
Author and Founder of NotJustCooking.com

 

Rain

RainIt has been raining, the welcome monsoon rain in Tucson. We have been waiting for it through soaring temperatures this summer, and the rain was a beautiful relief – an appreciated break. We need the water, and the monsoon rains energize plants, animals and people.

Personally, I love the monsoon, the lightening, the thunder and the magnificent demonstration of nature’s power. I sit quietly on our patio and allow nature to entertain me. But I have to admit that in general I do not enjoy rain and grey skies. I love to see color and the monochromatic view of a rainy sky is not stimulating for me. I realize that my feeling is a trailing memory of my younger years and has nothing to do with me now. I am also aware that I tarnish a beautiful event with memories of living in climates with frequent grey skies and lots of rain. How often do we do this, I wonder? Living something beautiful and overcasting it with not so shining memories? Arizona rains are a gift, a true blessing, and I realize that I let them pass without sufficient appreciation.

Grey has never been a color for me. It doesn’t stimulate my creativity or speak to me. It leaves me in a neutral zone. That’s how I feel when I look outside and it is raining. Neutral! Not a bad place to be, but not where I like to stay for long.

I decided I needed an attitude adjustment, so I can see and feel beauty in the rain and the low cloud cover. Standing at the window I focused on the blessings the rain brings to the animals and plants around me, and I tried to feel their joy and exaltation. I opened my heart and allowed it to fill with the benefits and the beauty of the rain. I listened to the rain, I watched the raindrops falling and forming a pool of water, and peace came over me. I realized that I didn’t need spectacular thunderstorms to appreciate nature, just a soothing rain can do wonders when we open our hearts and minds.

Focusing through the window with my newfound appreciation, I sensed that contrasts were slowly emerging.  I could feel and see the beauty in the revival of the plants and a trace of blue sky started peeking through the clouds. Grey is not just grey, there are all kind of nuances in it, and at the end there appears a most beautiful rainbow like the grand finale of a blessed event. And I have my colors, more vivid than I could have hoped!

Nature is a gift, it is a blessing, and we all are part of it!

Silvia Coggin, CPA
Author and Founder of NotJustCooking.com

Independence Day – Happy 4th of July

Independance Day - Happy 4th of July 2Independence Day is an especially inspiring celebration for me. What courage and vision it must have taken for the Continental Congress to adopt the Declaration of Independence and it has inspired people and nations since 1776.

On this 4th of July holiday weekend, I found myself contemplating the meaning of independence. I consider it as a basic right for everyone. Although not born in the United States, it is my country of choice and the independence and freedom America offers played a big role in my decision to immigrate. It wasn’t that I didn’t live a fulfilling life before, but it was the freedom to dream as big as I wanted and knowing that I could actually achieve my dreams that attracted me. Like the pilgrims, I felt that America would allow me to live the life I desired.

Independence was always important to me, even as a very young girl. I wanted to choose my own clothes and shoes, and my mother allowed me to do so with the understanding that I had to wear them even if I didn’t like them any longer. Sometimes color combinations were not great, and I am sure my mother had some difficulty letting me make my choices. But I learned, and the most important thing looking back is that I was allowed to develop an independent way of thinking and feelings of self worth. We had very little money, but I enjoyed being allowed to make personal choices. It wasn’t a question of how often, rather that I was allowed to make my own decisions whenever possible.

It wasn’t only in the area of clothing that I was able to exercise my freedom, but in many other ways so long as my choices were responsible and in harmony with my mother’s and my values. I am so thankful that I learned at a young age that my choices have consequences. This also served me well when my mother died young. I was 17 years old and I had no guidance or loving care after her passing. I still had a lot to learn and made questionable choices sometimes. But looking back from a spiritual platform, I don’t believe there were wrong choices, just different directions with different outcomes.

In my opinion, independence is not only relevant to our American way of life, but is also a cornerstone in a relationship. We cannot attempt to control someone and claim that we do it out of love. This basic right of self-determination applies to everyone. Let’s celebrate our freedom and independence! They are a precious privilege and right we may sometimes take for granted, but which remain the hope and dream for millions.

I am always inspired on Independence Day by the vision of our forefathers and wonder what they would think of the nation they created if they could see it today.

Silvia Coggin, CPC
Author and Founder of NotJustCooking.com

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