Monday, December 31, 2007

Farewell 2007!

Hello Friends,

Welcome to Monday and the last day of 2007.

While most people are taking their Christmas decorations down, I am sprucing mine up. I love to celebrate with a last hurrah to ring in the New Year before we put everything away until the next holiday season.

It just tickles me to hang twirly streamers and metallic curling ribbon all over the house. We have several lighted table-top decorations and a big "Happy New Year" banner, that makes the house look extra special. Finally, I add sparkly curls, New Year party hats, and horns to our already beautiful Christmas tree.

Dave and I have plans to go out for dinner and then dancing. So even though we will not be having a party at home, Mason and Melody (his sitter) will be here having pizza, snacks, and sparkling cider in glass champagne flutes. Yes, Real glass! He is so excited to be having a party that is just for him, and decorating the house, makes it that much more meaningful.

My motivator for this last day of 2007 is from a beautiful book, Simple Abundance:

Chill something bubbly. Honor the Old Year with a farewell toast, welcome the New Year within. Offer thanks. Celebrate how far you've come, how much you've learned, and the glorious person you really are. Happy New Year!

Monday, December 24, 2007

Merry Christmas Motivator

Hi Friends,
It is Christmas Eve and I do believe I have succeeded in my quest for a stress free holiday. There has been very little party-going and entertaining, and I have to say, it has been nice. I have been able to be with Dave and Mason, and we have been able to attend the events we really wanted to. This is not to say we do not like to get dressed up and go out. It is just that sometimes it all becomes too much. Too much scheduling, too much rushing, and just too much go, go, go.

Today we are going to see Alvin and the Chipmunks, and then we will deliver our Christmas pies to our neighbors. Dave baked each neighbor a delicious apple-raspberry pie, and I am complimenting his pie with my beautiful snowflake sugar cookies. Have a merry, merry Christmas and take a moment to really take in today's motivator. I think it is a wonderful message everyday, but especially to ring in a new year.

Love to you and yours!

Kathy

This Christmas

This Christmas mend a quarrel. Seek out a forgotten friend. Write a love letter. Share some treasure. Give a soft answer. Encourage youth. Keep a promise. Find the time. Forgive an enemy. Listen. Apologize if you were wrong. Think first of someone else. Be kind and gentle. Laugh a little. Laugh a little more. Express your gratitude. Gladden the heart of a child. Take pleasure in the beauty and wonder of the earth. Speak your love. Speak it again. Speak it still once again. Anonymous

Monday, December 17, 2007

Monday Motivator

Today is my birthday and I must be growing up. Having a December birthday is great, but unless it is set up properly from the very beginning, it can be a bummer (I've been told). I am very lucky in this regard as my mom made it a point to differentiate my birthday from Christmas. I never get a combination gift and my birthday presents are never wrapped in Christmas paper.

In years past, my birthday was a month-long event. I would start counting down the days the first of December, and I celebrated everyday as if it were the 17th. My coworkers, business associates, friends, relatives and even total strangers were informed that I was celebrating my birthday-month. Of course, there would be a party. It might be dinner with friends, or a full blown, "all hours of the night" bash to bring everyone together, sometimes both! Whatever the case may have been, it was a pretty self-indulgent time.

The last several years have been quite the opposite. My birthdays have become a day in a month. I think about my birthday in terms of my past accomplishments and how much more I still have to do. I look in the mirror and see a woman who cares so much more for others than she does for herself, and I like that. This is just to say I have a life that is stimulating and full with the love of a husband and child, our animals, great friends, and all the opportunity in the world. I have realized that I am the least interesting, and life is so much better lived being interested.

I'm not sorry I spent so much time being into me. I think it lends my best years to giving to others, and that feels great. Today is my birthday and I will celebrate being older without being old. Now I have to get Mason off to school, meet with the trainer to run in the rain, finish my Christmas cookie gifts, volunteer at Mason's school for two hours, and Dave said I have to pick up the dog poop in the back yard. Yep, it's my birthday! Laughing!

"Youth is a circumstance you can't do anything about. The trick is to grow up without getting old." Frank Lloyd Wright

Monday, December 10, 2007

Monday Motivator


Merry Christmas!

This weekend Mason and I made Christmas cookies. It is really a task with a 4 year old, but as much work as it is, it is worth every moment of the 15 minutes he spends decorating a dozen cookies.

I remember when I was growing up, my mom did lots and lots of baking. She must have started right after Thanksgiving and made every kind of Christmas cookie in the book. I helped with some, but decorating the cut-out cookies was the best. When I was little, the frosting we used was homemade butter cream. It was thick and sweet, and never got hard. That meant that we had to lay the cookies out one by one, and you couldn't stack them up without smearing and messing them up. We had to decorate them using a butter knife, so the detail was not that good. We used sprinkles and shiny gold and silver balls, so even with the butter knife spreading, they were the prettiest cookies of the season.

Mason has a few advantages. Being a former professional cake decorator, I have bags and tips. We mix our icing using meringue powder so it dries hard thus, not messing up your work of art. We don't have the gold and silver balls anymore because they are no longer for sale in California, but we have ways around that. We have a ball talking about the kind of cookies we are making, happy, mad, wacky, and even "the one-eyed guy." Pretty much anything goes, and isn't that how you want to remember it when you are all grown up? "I got to decorate the cookies any way I wanted to." That is how I remember my mom facilitating my creativity, and that is the same gift I want to give to Mason.

What are your holiday traditions? Do you have a favorite Christmas memory? I would love to hear it, and maybe I can share some of them next week. That would be fun. In the meantime, enjoy the picture of our Christmas cookies and this motivator.

"What an enormous magnifier is tradition! How a thing grows in the human memory and in the human imagination, when love, worship, and all that lies in the human heart, is there to encourage it." Thomas Carlyle

Monday, December 3, 2007

Monday Motivator


Welcome to December!

I am having one of those mornings where there is so much to do, that I can't quite figure out where to start! I have a mile long list of little tasks, and then another list of things to do that will take a little more time. Usually, when I find myself in this place, I knock out as many of the little things as I can, and then settle in to tackle the bigger things. For some reason though, I am just a little more scatter-brained today. I suspect regardless of my current state of mind, everything will eventually get done.

We had a really wonderful weekend. Dave, Mason, and I went to Columbia State Park. What fun! We tootled the town, watched as they made giant candy canes at Nelson's Candy shop, and rode on the stage coach. We were the only family on the coach and during our trip, we were stopped by a bandit! Yes, a man with a gun! Dave and I enjoyed the theatrics, but Mason was genuinely frightened. After we were back on our way, safe and sound, I explained to Mason that it was just a show. I am not sure he believed me. After all that excitement, Dave and Mason had the best time climbing in and on the rocks. Those of you who have been to Columbia know what I am talking about. We stayed overnight in Sonora and since it got dark so early, we had a party in our hotel room We went to the local Save-Mart and each got a treat. We went back to our room and watched television in our jammies and ate junk food. Mason thought that was the best! Sunday, we headed home early and got to decorating the house for Christmas.

I was hoping to get a great photo of all of us for our Christmas card, but that didn't happen. I guess I need to come up with a plan B. I hope you are all getting in the Christmas spirit and looking forward to lots of holiday fun this month. I know we are! Have a great week and make sure you are only doing what warms your heart. This is the motivator that we are practicing. Hopefully, with consistency, Mason will get it.

Lots of love!

Kathy

Ask your children two questions this Christmas. First: "What do you want to give to others for Christmas?" Second: "What do you want for Christmas?" The first fosters generosity of heart and an outward focus. The second can breed selfishness if not tempered by the first. - Anonymous

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Monday Motivator 11/26/07


Happy last Monday of November!

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday. Dave and I did something different this year, and I think we will stick with it. We did not celebrate with everyone else on Thursday. Instead, we slept in, scoured the adds, cleaned the house, went to a movie, and had Jack-in-the-Box for dinner. I know it sounds crazy, but it was so nice to be able to have two full days getting ready for our celebration on Saturday. It was wonderful!

We had five of our friends over for Thanksgiving Saturday. Dave christened our new grill with the best turkey any of us have ever had. He used a recipe from Alton Brown, from the Food Network. Wow! It really was the best any of us have ever eaten. After dinner, we sat out by the fire, enjoyed the hot tub, and finally wound up the night playing Taboo around the coffee table while the crantinis flowed! So, so much to be thankful for.

Now it is back to work, and almost itme to welcome December. Today I pledge to enjoy this holiday season. I intend to make it stress free, and to only do the things that will be memorable and uplifting. I will do less shopping and practice more family traditions. What about you? What do you want your holday season to be? Have a wonderful week, and let me be the first to wish you happy holidays!

Enjoy this quote from Nelson Mandela. It moves me everytime I read it. I hope it moves you, too.

Love Kathy

"The first thing is to be honest with yourself. You can never have an impact on society if you have not changed yourself. … Great peacemakers are all people of integrity, of honesty, but humility."


— Nelson Mandela

Monday, November 19, 2007

Monday Motivator

Crabby Monday!

Not what you expected? Me neither, and just why is it that Monday is equated with a bad thing? I know the standard answer about just coming off a weekend, and now we all have to go back to work. It seems to me that the problem is not with Monday, but with where you have to go every Monday, and in the big picture, don't you have a choice? I say you do. Some will disagree, like Dave, saying that he can't just quit his job because we have a mortgage to pay. To that, I say, he is right however, he could lay some solid plans for a new career path, and start working in that direction. There's a choice.

I find that even if I can't be doing exactly what I feel I would love to be doing right now, if I am doing something that is moving me in that direction, I feel better about all of my circumstances. When I wanted to be an actor, I signed up for workshops, that lead to classes, that lead to doing commercials. The funny thing is, I felt successful just having signed up for the class! The same holds true for my new career as an author and motivational speaker. I made the choice, smiled, made it known I was available to speak, smiled some more, and viola, I have my first speaking gig tomorrow night in Walnut Creek. Ironically, I have a radio interview today about my participation in the Chicken Soup series. Two gigs in one week, how is that for intention?

Today, I have to go to work, doing the job that makes me dread Monday, but after sharing all this with you, I am going to smile all day, as I head to the radio station and after that, prepare to speak tomorrow night. Happy Monday I say!

If you find your Mondays to be less than welcome, ask yourself what you would rather be doing. If you can't just do it, find a way to start doing it, and follow through. It will make you feel better than you can imagine, even though you still have to do the other stuff, too!


Take a minute and post in the comments what you will do to move you in the direction you want to go. Let's see how many of us will take at least that much action.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Monday Motivator


Happy Monday!

Dave and I just celebrated our 6th wedding anniversary with friends in Nevada City. We took a mini road trip to Nevada City. First, we went almost to Reno, and then back to Truckee taking highway 89 through Downieville to Nevada City. It was pretty, but the best part was the kind of conversation you have on long drives. For me, it was a good time to take stock of our marriage and see if Dave is as happy as I am.

We talked about our individual expectations, the ones that have been met, one that has not, and most of them have been far exceeded. I hear people everyday talk about how much work marriage is, how "hard" it is to make it work, and I don't find that to be true. From the day we got engaged, to the day Dave moved into the house in Alameda, all the way through money struggles, and military deployments, we have worked together, finding solutions that make both of us mostly happy. For us, the keys are respect, communication, and laughter.

Our celebration with our friends made us realize yet again, how lucky we are to be surrounded by such phenomenal people. The few people that made the trip this weekend barely scratch the surface of the real numbers of great people we have in our life. It would appear that success is imminent when you have such wonderful love and support. Thank you to all of you that make our marriage so much more wonderful than it already is!

Todays motivaotr is a definition. Read it a couple of times so it stays with you. As you go through your week, see how many times you recall this moment and how much respect plays a part in everyday of your life.

Respect is an assumption of good faith and competence in another person, or in the whole of oneself. Depth of integrity, trust, complementary moral values, and skill are necessary components.

Respect adds general reliability to social interactions. It enables people to work together in a complimentary fashion, instead of each person having to understand or even agree with everyone, respect is very important to the community because people must have respect to get along with other people

Monday, November 5, 2007

Monday Motivator

Welcome to the first Monday in November.

There are only nine more Mondays this year including this one, and can you believe that we only have 50 more shopping days until Christmas?

Thank you to those of you who looked at my blog and gave me your input. It was all positive, and the free editing was much appreciated. It still amazes me that you can write something, read it, read it again, and again, and even one more time, and still have misspelled words. Several of you asked me why I created the blog so let me share with you my vision.

I have been working all year on a book with my friend Dahlynn. Originally, the book was to be titled "Intentional Winning on the Radio and in Life" and it was to show how I have manifested the power of intention, winning on the radio, over the last twenty-five years. After getting it written, Dahlynn and I decided to rethink the radio concept, and introduce Intentional Winning in a more basic format that would be applicable to so many other subjects. The radio book is still written, I just don't know how we will produce/distribute it.

Intentional Winning: Victory by design. Creating the journey, and the outcome for every aspect of your life by participating in the process.

Our vision is to get the first book, "Intentional Winning, a handbook for life" published, and then model a company much like the Chicken Soup for the Soul company. I see books being co-authored with titles like "Intentional Winning in Marriage," "Intentional Winning in Parenting," and "Intentional Winning in Wine Making." You name it, and we can plug it in. Intentional Winning is a cross between a how-to like the Dummies series, and a more spiritual slant on life much like The Secret.

I plan to move into a career as a motivational speaker with Intentional Winning being my subject. We have the web address reserved and hope to make it a resource for all the books, journals, IW products, booking motivational speakers, and hiring success coaches. This blog is my way of communicating with all of you, and branching out beyond just an e-mail list in my address book. It may be a little less personal, but it may not. I have not yet decided how I will proceed in that respect.

So there it is. It is a work in process and will likely be ever evolving. I hope that makes this whole book idea and business plan a little more clear. Like so many successful concepts, I realize that my information is not new, or revolutionary. What I do think, is that my perception and delivery of good information will reach some that would otherwise not have been hooked. I also know that I am an average Joe, no MBA, I'm not a CEO of a million dollar company (yet!), and that in and of itself will be appealing to many.

This will also be the new format for my Monday Motivator. What do you think? I hope you like it, and will continue to enjoy this journey with me. Have a great week and next week, I will have a more MM format.

Monday, October 29, 2007

MM 10/29/2007

Hello friends,

I know it is late, but sometimes you have to work with what you have. I had the luxury of being in Truckee this last weekend with Lisa and Mary and didn't get home until today. It was a much needed get away, and I am back home with my emotional batteries charged, and inspired again to reach for the stars.

Lisa invited Mary and I to take off and spend some girl time together. We stayed up late, watched many DVD's.could have slept in ( but we didn't), stayed in our pajamas longer than normal, ate wonderful food (mostly healthy), shopped in old town Truckee, did yoga, hiked the hills, and drank good wine, while doing all the good that women do for each other. We all missed our families, but really took to heart that we needed this time to nurture ourselves and each other. We read from Simple Abundance by Sarah Bran Breathnach, a beautiful book to read from every single day. I found this book in a thrift store and I feel more like it found me. I am in a place of finding simplicity, and down sizing. I can't recommend it enough and hope if you seek it out, enjoy it as much as I am.

So with that, let me say how much I appreciate my marriage and family for allowing me to do what I need to do without them. It seem so easy to forget that we are individuals before we are wives, husbands, mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, employers and employees. We need to hang on to who it is we are before we commit to all those other people we become. Ask yourself what you have done for yourself lately? What do you want to do, just for you? My suggestion is that you find a way to do it, because I feel, you will return to your busy life so much more willingly, and happy. Yes, happy.

Have a wonderful week, and take some time to to celebrate the you that we all know and love!

Kathy

"Deliberately seeking solitude—quality time spent away from family and friends—may seem selfish. It is not. Solitude is as necessary for our creative spirits to develop and flourish as are sleep and food for our bodies."
— Sarah Ban Breathnach

Monday, October 22, 2007

MM 10/22/2007

Hi Friends,

Last week I ranted about groceries, eating out, and my attempt to save money. This was, without a doubt, the most responded to MM of all time. Thank you to all of you who gave me your input and I appreciate that you were honest. I know you were honest because some of you told me I was crazy, over reacting, and that I needed to "just lighten up, buy the groceries and let them eat out." Others empathized that they have gone through the same thing and felt my frustration.

Two of you hit the nail on the head with the acknowledgment that (first, my e-mail was one-sided, and) this family is not aligned in terms of our financial goals. The good thing is that reading the replies gave all of us more to talk about, and everyone felt validated on some level. For me, I just feel like I have worked so hard this year to pay off our debt, and set us up to be able to save, that to see that hard work eaten up (okay, pun intended!) by eating out, just seems silly.

This weekend we celebrated. Mason turned four on Saturday and we went to Apple Hill. We had a picnic and took lots of pictures. Ken and Dahlynn were there signing books and we just made a big deal that it was Mason's birthday. When we got home, we had pizza for dinner and then let Mason open presents from the family. On Sunday, we had a bull riding birthday party (in theme only) in the backyard. Dave barbecued, and we had a good turn out of 10 kids plus parents. Mason was especially happy to have his grandma Mary here to celebrate, too!

I hope you all had a wonderful weekend and are looking forward to a great week! I have attached a few pictures from the weekend. Enjoy!


A Thought on Service
"I believe one of the most important questions any of us can ever ask of ourselves is, 'What and how can I be of service?' … It doesn't take a Harvard degree or millions of dollars to make a difference in a child's life. … It just really takes a commitment and a will to do better."
— Oprah

Monday, October 15, 2007

MM 10/15/2007

WARNING! THIS IS LONG, BUT I WOULD SURE LIKE YOUR INPUT.

Hi Friends,

Happy Monday. Today I want to pick your brain in an attempt to determine if I am normal. Okay, stop laughing. Normal, what is normal really? I am pretty sure I am not completely normal, but, I also do not think I am that far off of center. The subject is groceries and finances.

For those of my friends who are single, these numbers are going to seem astronomical, and those of you that shop for a family, you will see this is right in line with normal. The way I see it, if I spend $600 on a big grocery shop (big means we needed everything, meat, canned goods, staples, etc.) I expect that we will have enough food for all meals for a month. The only things we may need to buy are fresh vegetables, and breads as needed.

What I see happening in my family, is that there is such a strong desire for fast and easy, that no matter how much food is in the house, they still want to eat out. (I also think the addiction to the strong flavors of convenience foods play into this as well). It might be important to say that I queried this family about what they want to eat before I went shopping. We have cereal, yogurts, breakfast bars and fruit for breakfast. I also pre-make waffles and pancakes so they can just heat them up in the microwave or toaster. For lunch we have all kinds of sandwich stuff, salad fixings, fruit, and convenience accouterments like fruit cups, applesauce, crackers with peanut butter, and many other things like this. Dinners are planned, and not so much the issue.

Here is why all this is being discussed. The house is fully stocked with food from a big shop on Saturday. Sunday morning, Dave and Colton are leaving to go to a game tournament and as they are standing at the door, Dave makes the comment that he hopes everything will start on time. Colton chimes in, "If it doesn't, why don't we stop and get breakfast." I jumped in with the apparently insane idea that they eat breakfast now, at home! Dave said there was no time, so Colton grabbed a breakfast bar and off they went, planning to buy lunch out.

I do not have an issue with a day out for the boys, enjoying time together and having lunch out. What I do take issue with, is that we have worked really hard, all year, budgeting and watching our pennies. We just spent $595.00 stocking the house with anything you can imagine to eat, and they still are not eating it. Colton spends all of his weekly allowance on food from Taco Tree and the gas station. He needs to be saving money for snowboard gear, and he owes his mom $95. I am thinking, is it not responsible, and a bit on the selfish side to be eating out, and in turn, letting good, fresh food go to waste at home. Let me also mention that eating out includes energy drinks, snack food, and the like when you stop to get gas for the car.

Eating out is expensive. I would like to teach both of the boys (all three) that they could use their money in a far wiser fashion. So here is where I would like to know what you think. Do you think I am being obsessive about this? Or as Dave puts it, "You have issues." What have you done to try to tackle this issue with your family?

The reality is, as a mom, I care very much that my boys are eating as healthfully as I can provide for, and enforce. I also want them to have the other things in life that they want, and if they are piddling their money away two dollars, five dollars, and fifteen dollars at a time on convenience food, how will they ever achieve financial freedom? My best defense is that Oprah Winfrey, a gazillionaire, takes her lunch to work. She can afford to buy anything she wants, and understands the waste of money that eating out is.

SO, what do you think? Please reply to not only me, but to Dave as well. If you agree with him, and I need to lighten up, please, don't hold back!

Lots of love to all of you and have a great week!

Kathy

"Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude." George Washington

Monday, October 8, 2007

MM 10/08/2007

Happy Monday,almost Tuesday!

It is late, but I have good reason. My mom was visiting this weekend and just left early this afternoon. The last time my mom was here to visit was May, 2003 when we lived in Dutch Flat. This is the first time she has seen our house in Auburn and it was nice to have her here spending time with Mason. Well, spending time with us,too,but it is more important to me that Mason get to know and spend as much time as possible with his grandparents. We didn't go anywhere or make a big to-do about anything, we just stayed home and enjoyed each others company. Mom left today to visit with Aunt Jeannette in Hayward, before she makes a brief stop in Portland to see my brother, and then back home to Utah.

On Friday night we had a blast having dinner with Ken and Dahlynn. Dave went all out with a meal of homemade Caesar salad, tri-tip with a burgundy peppercorn sauce, garlic mashed potatoes, asparagus with cheese sauce, and fresh green beans and baby carrots. Dahlynn made a pumpkin pie and Ken baked cookies. As wonderful as that all sounds (and it was!), it was nothing compared to the good time we shared sitting around the table laughing and telling stories. Next month we will do it again at the McKowen homestead and I am sure we will have as much fun, and as many laughs!

Have a wonderful week and let me leave you with an empowering thought: You perceive the world through an obscure window of beliefs, interpretations, and associations. The world is therefore a reflection of your mind. As your mind clears, you perceive reality simply as it is. What does your experience of life reveal about your filters of perception?

Lots of love!

Monday, October 1, 2007

MM 10/01/2007

Hello friends,

Happy Monday! Is it raining where you are? It is here. I love that we are having this early rain to welcome fall. My neighborhood has the most beautiful trees and one in particular is already completely, magnificently red! I know we still have plenty of warm days ahead of us, but this just really puts me in the mood for the coming holidays.

This weekend, Mason and I stayed home and laid low. Is that right, laid low? Anyway, we went through all of Mason's toys and made room for birthday and Christmas time, and I did the same in my room with clothes and stuff throughout the house. It feels so good to let go of stuff and de-clutter. I am finding that home is not so relaxing when I have so much stuff all around me. Not to mention that I keep stuff because I know I will need it, but when I do, I can't find it so I go out and buy what I need again anyway! It is a vicious cycle and I have vowed to break it. Let go, I say! Laughing.

Go have a wonderful week. Today, write down something you want to do before the end of the year. Plan it, and make it happen. Dave will be home today and we will be making plans for the rest of this year to create next year. I am excited and know the seeds we plant today will grow tall and strong tomorrow. Have a great week!

Kathy

Banish Doubt

When doubt is banished, abundance flourishes and anything is possible. We all tend to use our thoughts to create the world we choose. If you doubt your ability to create the life you intend, then you're refusing the power of intention. Even when nothing seems to indicate that you're accomplishing what you desire in your life, refuse to entertain doubt. Shakespeare declared, "Our doubts are traitors, and make us lose the good we oft might win by fearing to attempt." And Ramana Maharshi observed, "Doubts arise because of an absence of surrender."

You may well choose to doubt what others say to you, or what you experience with your senses, but banish doubt when it comes to knowing that a universal force of intention designed you and got you here! Don't doubt your creation from a field of energy that's always available to you.

Wayne Dyer, from The Power Of Intention

Monday, September 24, 2007

MM 9/24/2007

Happy Fall!

Hooray! It's finally here. All of you know by now, this is my favorite time of year. The cold front that moved through, with just enough rain, really put me in the mood. For what you ask? Cooler weather, soft sweaters, cream soups, changing leaves and fires to keep us warm. What about you, what is your favorite season and why?

Dave is in Anaheim until next Monday so it is just me, Colton, and Mason. Between work, school, homework, writing projects, exercise, and everything else that seems to dominate my days, it will seem like I blinked my eyes, and Dave will be home.

For now, it is the start of a busy week and I am off and running. I hope you make the most of each day this week and I will see you on Monday. I love this quote. I try to live by this philosophy. I hope you enjoy it and take a moment to really take it in. Think about it and ask yourself if you agree.

Lots of love,

Kathy

"That's why mental happiness is more important than physical comfort. Physical comfort comes from the material. But material facilities cannot provide you with peace of mind. … When you are discontent, you always want more, more, more. Your desire can never be satisfied. But when you practice contentment, you can say to yourself, 'Oh yes—I already have everything that I really need."
— The Dalai Lama

Monday, September 17, 2007

MM 9/17/2007

Happy Monday and I think this is the last "official" week of summer.

Did you have a good weekend? We did. Saturday was the night of Auburn's big street party, the Black and White Ball. It was James Bond themed for the year, 2007, 007, get it? It was not a great theme for costumes because it was not easy to duplicate some of the most famous Bond characters. Dave did a great job as Emilio Largo and I was a 60s go-go dancer. It was fun. Roberta and Steve came from San Jose, and Mike from Alameda. Most ball goers were true to the party name and just dressed in black and white. Sunday, Dave made us a big breakfast and the rest of the day was for lounging.

I now want to comment on a realization I had this weekend and see if any of you have had similar experiences. I am sure you have all heard the phrase "first a whisper, than a shout, and then a brick." If you have not, it refers to the messages that the universe, or God, or just our inner voices (whichever you believe), sends us about what to do in any given situation. The whisper is that feeling you get, that nagging sensation that makes you think twice but usually, you go ahead as planned. The shout is the event that happens that appears to be a nuisance, something going wrong, but, you still go ahead. The brick is the trouble, that if you had known was coming your way with the whisper, you would have changed course all together. As a younger woman, I had to get to the brick step over and over on the same issue. This weekend, I got to the shout step, and boy did it impact me. My point is that, as I get older, it takes less to make me rethink my course of action. I guess this is not such a big realization, since as we grow and mature, we pay attention and realize that "it" can happen to us. "It" can be anything from an auto accident, to infidelity, to an untimely death.

So with that, listen to the whispers, don't worry about changing your plans and have a great week! Lots of love!

Kathy

"As you become more clear about who you really are, you'll be better able to decide what is best for you - the first time around."
Oprah

Monday, September 10, 2007

MM 9/10/2007

Hi Friends,

I am late, late, late! Today was not at all what I had planned and certainly not the kind of day I wanted to occupy my time. Before I even got out the door to get Mason to school, Dave called to tell me he had been in an auto accident. He is okay, but suffering from whiplash. Hopefully, it is just sore muscles, but as many of you know, you don't know until a few days have past. He was rear ended while stopped and it appears his truck is totaled . I am very grateful that it wasn't more serious and even more thankful that he wasn't driving the Miata.

With that, I have to run, I'm still trying to catch up! Have a great week and I will be in touch next week.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

MM 9/4/2007

Happy Fall!

Is it official, can I say "fall?" I think the first day of fall is later, September 23, but it is after Labor day so that means summer is officially over. It is my prediction that with the mild weather we had all summer, that we are in for a very warm fall. We shall see!

As usual, Dave was at his game convention this last weekend and Colton was with his mom. That left Mason and I to our own devices. We went to the video and grocery stores on Friday night to set up our weekend. Saturday we watched movies and ate junk food. It was a rare occasion that "anything goes" as far as food and meals. Mason liked that! Sunday we ran some errands and later we cooked hot dogs and smores in the back yard. We tried to sleep outside, but like last time, the dog was not having it! Monday we washed the cars, (more like played in the hose) and then when Colton and Dave got home, we had friends over for dinner.

Dave was home for just over 15 hours and he is off again. He will be in Ventura until Sunday. It is a good thing I can keep this family in line all by myself! I hope you all had a wonderful holiday weekend, too. Think about today's motivator and ask yourself what you could do if only you didn't know you couldn't. Have a great week and I'll see you next Monday.

Lots of love,

Kathy

Aerodynamically the bumblebee shouldn't be able to fly, but the bumblebee doesn't know that so it goes on flying anyway.

Monday, August 27, 2007

MM 8/27/2007

Happy Monday all!

This morning got off to an early and busy start. Dave had to be up at five to be at the airport and for some reason he was up at four. I guess that is good for me,since it got me up a little earlier than I had planned thus getting both boys out the door was less rushed.

We had a relatively uneventful week and weekend, but there is news. Dave, Colton and Mason went swimming in the river on Friday afternoon and then out for pizza. I didn't go because that was my girl's poker night. The news is that I won! Heads up, with an ace-ten, I took the match. I won a little over $100 and made sure everyone in the family got to share in my good fortune. Not a bad fun night out for $20!

Now we are back to work and school and all the other things that take our time. Have a great week and I'll see you next Monday!

Lots of love and some good advice, too!

Kathy

In times of great stress or adversity, it's always best to keep busy, to plow your anger and your energy into something positive. - Lee A. Iacocca

Monday, August 20, 2007

MM 8/20/07

I suspect many of you will relate to this. Maybe I think it's funny because it is just another day in my life, but I suspect you will find some truth in it, too!

This took place a couple of months ago, and has since become a staple in our family vocabulary. Here is what happened:

“Honey, we need to change the sheets on the bed.” My husband said to me as we were drifting off to sleep with our backs to each other, bottoms touching, and covers pulled up tight.

“We?” I asked “Do you have a mouse in your pocket?”

He sat up and asked me what the heck I was talking about. I told him that it seems odd to me that “we” need to change the sheets. I the asked him why doesn't he just do it if he sees it needs to be done. He proceeded to inform me that he couldn't’t do it by himself, because changing the sheets on the bed is a two person job. “Really, how do you suppose I manage to do it 100% of the time all by myself?” I queried.

He didn’t really answer me as he mumbled some inaudible sounds, rolled back over, and pulled the covers back up under his chin. I was lying there with the thoughts in my head spinning. I was seeing, “we need to clean the garage, we need to get more batteries, we need to take the comforters to the Laundromat and my favorite, we need to take something out for dinner.” The last one is my favorite because I visualize the two of us, united and in love, reaching into the freezer together (as some orchestrated music plays) to pull out the pork chops! And on and on the list goes… always “we.”

I think what is especially funny about this is, as much as he kindly makes it a team effort, after the announcement is made that “we” need to get something done, he expects it will be taken care of…only, not as the we he originally suggested. As it usually goes, it doesn’t come up again unless it hasn’t been done, then the original conversation takes place once again, as if he were realizing the issue for the very first time.

Most of the time, I get whatever it is done. I am the Army-of-one, the woman who does more before 9:00 AM than most people do in a day. If the sheets need to be changed, the very next morning they are off the bed and in the washer. If the comforters need to be laundered, they are in the car to be dropped into a Super-King-Sized-Heavy-Duty-Washer. And if “we” need batteries, I add them to the list of stuff "we" are out of.

Somehow, everything gets done. And just in case you are wondering, I do not have a mouse in my pocket.

Next week, we can talk about the “Finish Fairy.” Lucky for my husband, she has a thing going with the mouse.

What do you think of this whole idea? Do you, or someone you know have a mouse in his or her pocket?

Have a great week, smile, and I hope to hear from you soon!

Kathy

P.S. Since this incident, Dave and his mouse have been working together and have, in fact, changed the sheets, done the dishes, and taken food out for dinner... all without my assistance!

Monday, August 13, 2007

MM 8/13/2007

Hi Friends!

Thank you, thank you, thank you for all the nice e-mails wishing me well last week. I was not really sick, maybe just overworked. Our bodies have a way of letting us know when it is time to rest.

August is close to half way gone and I am already seeing the slightest signs of fall. The leaves are beginning to change, and there is a smell that lingers in the evenings that makes you start to think of the smell of soup cooking, and putting on a cozy sweatshirt. I am sure it is also because we are having such a mild summer, with temps only in the 80s and 90s. In any case, I love fall, and it makes me feel good to get excited about its arrival.

We spent this weekend rearranging things a bit for a welcome addition to our family. Colton is coming to Auburn to give Sierra living a try. Dave and I worked furiously to get his room cleared of our stuff and set up for him. We even put a fresh coat of paint on the walls and snapped in some laminate flooring (the 1977 orange shag carpet was was a genuine moldy-oldie!). Mason is especially excited to have Colton here, he keeps asking me if Colton is allowed to play with his toys!

So now it is off to work. As I sit here writing, my phone is ringing and voice mails are being left. I have several pressing issues today so I better get to it, or "hop-sing" as Dave says. I don't really know what that means, but he uses it in the context of "go! go!" So going, I am!

Have a great week and I am leaving you with a quote that keeps coming up with Mason. At almost four, he tells me he "can't" when he doesn't want to do something. I then tell him I don't know what that word means, "can't." I then ask him what success comes in and he happily shouts "Cans!" Yes, Success comes in cans. Failure, in cant's.

Monday, August 6, 2007

MM 8/6/2007

Hi guys,

It is late, I know, I am feeling a little under the weather. Nothing to be alarmed about, just moving slowly and not feeling 100%. I don't feel like "computering" which could mean writing, banking, shopping, research, or any number of other things.

Have a great day, a better week and I'll see you next Monday!

Monday, July 30, 2007

MM 7/30/2007

Hi Friends,

Happy last Monday of July! Where has this summer gone? The good news is that August is just around the corner and you all know what that means...the California State Fair! I love the fair. I already have my tickets and we are planning to go on a Tuesday when kids are free and all rides are only one dollar! If you go on line to www.bigfun.org, you can still buy discount tickets until August 10. The poppy pack is a great value, you get four adult admissions and one parking pass for $29.00. After the tenth, it would cost $47.00.

Dave and I have been on the go like crazy. I have been working several jobs, long hours and I even worked Saturday morning. After work, Dave and I planned a camp out in our backyard. Dave barbecued a delicious tri-tip, we roasted marshmallows in the outside fireplace, and then slept out under the stars on our deck. I wish I could leave you with this idyllic picture of life in the Partak household, but in reality, it went more like this: Dave made a delicious barbecue, but it was way too hot to eat outside, so instead, we sat in the living room in front of the television. After dinner, we did go out to make smores, but Mason squawked about every little thing and when it was time to go to sleep, it seemed all was well. That was until 2:30 AM when Dave said he couldn't sleep because the dog was staring at him, so he brought him outside with us. After he settled back in, he couldn't sleep because they were both (Dave and the dog) all tuned in to every critter and leaf-crackling sound. By 3 AM, I sent him and the dog in the house to sleep in the bed so I could get back to my rest. Just as I was sleeping comfortably, Mason was awake and bouncing me off the air mattress onto the poky-leaf-covered deck! So there is the truth behind the happy family we call our own!

Finally, if you have sent me e-mails and I have not replied, please be patient. I have been in technology hell. I do not want to elaborate, but suffice it to say, I have been off line way more than I have been on line. Have a great week and in light of my technical problems, my Motivator comes from the book The Road Less Traveled: Problems do not go away. They must be worked through or else they remain, forever a barrier to the growth and development of the spirit.

Have a great week and solve those problems!

Lots of love,

Kathy

Monday, July 23, 2007

MM 7/23/2007

Hi Friends!

Happy Monday. Dave and I are in Las Vegas. Dave had to be here for business and I got to tag along. We got here Friday night around midnight and have been having a ball! We played a little poker and blackjack, but have been doing lots of walking, looking at all the new stuff, eating in little restaurants and just enjoying being together without Mason! You all know I love my son, but I love my husband too, and time with just the two of us, is so important. Not to mention, Mason doesn't miss us either. I have called him each day and it is like pulling teeth to get him to talk to me . When he does get on the phone, he tells me he is having fun, he is okay and good-bye!

I don't have much time in the hotel business center so have a great week, and I'll talk to you next week!

Love Kathy

Tell those you love, that you love them. Tell them today, tomorrow and every other chance you get. If they don't love you back, still tell them that you love them. It will make you feel good and regardless of what they say, it will make them feel good too!

Monday, July 16, 2007

MM 7/16/2007

Happy Monday!

How the heck is everybody? I am great! There are so many little things around me to be grateful for, that they all add up to me being as happy as I have ever been!

On Friday I made a Tinker Bell birthday cake and cupcakes for our friends daughter, Taylor. The party on Saturday was great fun. They set up four different water toys and a bounce house. It was a mini water park! We had pizza and Taylor got a motorized Jeep. She was very generous and let anyone who wanted to, drive. Mason had a blast! Dave was at a game tournament all day on Saturday and guess what? He won! He won by the highest point spread in the history of this store. Congratulations honey!

On Sunday we went to Clayton and met Mary at the barn. We had a great day with Mason and the horses. All three of us took full advantage of the opportunity to groom, ride and bathe Mary's horse, Chance. Dave and I are a little saddle sore this morning (come on, it has been 10 years for Dave, and with the exception of a few rides here and there for me, just as long!) but as sure as we have ever been, that we want small town, ranch life for Mason.
After the barn, we met back at Keith and Mary's for an early dinner, and some nice conversation around the pool in the backyard. We just don't get to spend enough time with our close friends. Thanks for such a fun day you guys!

Today, it is back to work and all the stuff that needs our attention. We finally got the Durango back from the shop, but I have to take it back today for an unusual noise. Hopefully, it is a simple thing because I can't be without my car for another week! Have a great week and remember, (here's the motivator) "Look at all the little things that make you happy and you will be amazed at how few there are that make you mad!"

Lots of love,

Monday, July 9, 2007

MM 7/9/2007


Happy Monday everybody!

Do you ever get that feeling that the more things you get to cross off your "to-do" list, the more things there are to do? It feels that way to me. This weekend, we played a little and we worked a little. On Saturday, we attended a party in Foresthill and met some really wonderful people. They roasted a whole pig (that was a sight to see), the kids spent most of the day in the pool, and the rest of us ate good food and enjoyed each others company.

Sunday started off just the way I like it, coffee on the deck in the backyard with the morning paper. Mason was playing with his bulls and Riley was laying at my feet, while all the wildlife seemed to want to watch us. There were hummingbirds, blue jays, butterflies, and squirrels, all scurrying through the trees and other parts of the backyard. Dave was still in bed, but it was Sunday morning after all.

So here is a question:

Do you think it is possible to grow emotionally or spiritually without taking any action?

It is my belief if you are not growing, you are dying. If that is the case, we must constantly be learning new things and implementing changes to experience growth. If you are implementing something, that implies taking action. Is it possible to grow without doing something, new or otherwise? I also believe sometimes that action is stimulated by a wake-up call that is tragic or devastating. Let me know what you think, I am interested to see a different view point or know if you agree.

So we are off and running. I am looking forward to a busy and fruitful week. Yes, my to-do list is growing by the minute! I am including a few pictures from the 4th of July parade in Auburn. Dave was "in the parade" and Mason was so proud!

Have a great week and enjoy this excerpt form Jack Canfield's book The Success Principles. If you are looking for an excellent book to help motivate you to take some action to grow, this is the book! I can't say enough good things about it and I can't put it down. This bit is about the power of your words.


Your Word Has Power.

When you speak with impeccability, your words have power not only with yourself, but also with others. To speak with impeccability is to speak only words that are true, that uplift, and that affirm other people's worth.

As you learn how to speak with impeccability, you'll discover that words are also the basis of all relationships. How I speak to you and about you determines the quality of our relationship.

Monday, July 2, 2007

MM 7/2/2007

Happy July!

I love the month of July. July seems to me, to be the epitome of summer time. Flags flying, watermelon, barbecue, and all the opportunities to gather outside and drink lemonade. This year is one of those good years where July 4th falls on a Wednesday. Why is that good you ask? I think it is good because you can make the weekend before, and the weekend after a holiday weekend! It is all in how you look at it. Smiling.

Today is also a little sad. Dave's dad left at six this morning to return home to Florida. We had a wonderful visit and the best part was watching Mason build a relationship with his only grandpa. It saddens me deeply that Mason does not have a daily relationship with all of his grandparents. I know it is all about our choices, and we make the best of it, but these past few weeks made my heart big, and warm. I am thankful for the time we did have together.

Last week, in all the hoopla of returning home from Poobah, I was remiss in not sending out a big whoop and holler for Dave's birthday! My handsome hubby turned 39! Yes he did! Laughing. Okay, it was 45, but I have told him again and again that I love him more everyday, and he gets better looking every year, too. Happy Birthday honey. You are the light in my life, and I am eternally grateful for you and all that we share. My motivator today is a song dedication. "How I Feel," by Martina McBride. I love this song and it expresses how I feel beautifully.

I hope you all have a wonderful and safe July 4th. Celebrate with people you really enjoy being with. Remember everyday, but especially on Independence day, our brave men and women who serve this country, past and present.

With much love,

Kathy

How I Feel

Confetti falling from the sky
My hometown on the 4th of July
A midnight snow on Christmas Eve
Like standing up for what you believe
That's how I feel when I'm with you
That's how I feel when I'm with you
That's how I feel, That's how I feel when I'm with you

Your lucky coat, the first day of fall
When you wake up laughing just because
An old church door that stays wide open
A perfect heart that's never been broken

That's how I feel when I'm with you, That's how I feel when I'm with you
That's how I feel, That's how I feel when I'm with you

That's how I feel when I'm with you
Every day there's something new
To cry about, to laugh about
Those moments I can't live without
That's how I feel, That's how I feel
When I'm with you

Monday, June 25, 2007

MM 6/25/2007

Aloha Friends!

We are home from The Grand Poobah, and grand it was! This was the 20th anniversary of this event and everybody went all out.Tents were decorated, costumes created and the food for Saturday nights luau was amazing. We turned that group camp site into a mini Hawaiian island. Every year we have a large group of fun people. This year was no different except we had the pleasure of having Dave's dad with us. He played his guitar around the fire and had everybody clapping and singing along.

Getting ready to take a trip or go on vacation is some of the hardest work we do. We find the time and energy to shop, pack, prepare food and make sure we have all the little stuff we think we need to be ready to go. In addition to all that, we still work our day jobs and, take care of our families and homes. We have all heard the old saying, "work like the day before you leave for vacation everyday," Can you imagine how your sales numbers would soar if you did that? What about getting through all that filing and paper in your "in" box? I think I work hard most days, but I am going to implement into my routine to work like the day before I leave for vacation at least one day every week. I'll let you know how that impacts my sales numbers or piles of stuff to file and/or handle.

I hope you had a wonderful weekend and are on your way to a very productive week ahead. I have lots to do so I better get to doing it! Enjoy a few pictures of our Grand Poobah and I'll see you next week!

Kathy

Monday, June 18, 2007

MM 6/18/2007

Hi Friends!

Happy Father's Day to all of you dads and granddads. We had a wonderful Father's day. All of you know how important I feel it is for our children to know their grandparents. Well, Mason has my mom, who living in Utah, can't have the same kind of physical relationship that we could if we lived nearer to each other. He also has Dave's mom, who we see, but not often enough. Good for us, especially for father's day, we have Dave's dad here. Mason is having a ball playing games, telling stories and just spending time with his only grandpa.
We spent a great day just being together and then had company in the evening for a relaxing barbecue outside in the backyard.

This week is going to be busy, busy, busy! Which weeks aren't you ask? I ask myself that too! It is Poobah week! We are leaving for the lake on Thursday and can't be more excited. This is the 20th anniversary of the Grand Poobah and we are celebrating Hawaiian style. We are having a luau on Saturday night and have decorations galore. The pictures next week should be a lot of fun.

So now, I have 5 days of work to do in 3, so I am off and running. I hope you had a wonderful weekend with your family and will continue to share that love into this week!

Here is a great quote from an everyday guy, a father.

Make it great and watch for another e-mail from me on Wednesday.

Love you all!

Kathy

A Thought on Fathers

"Every dad has a dream, and a lot of times you can't pursue the dream as energetically as you want to. You have to balance pursuit of the dream with stability of the family. Some of my single friends can just pursue their dreams. We have to make sure that every lily pad we step on is a firm one. My dream for my family is to have a stable existence every day, [to be] happy, fulfilled, secure."
Kevin, a father
From the Oprah show Secret Thoughts of Fathers

Monday, June 11, 2007

MM 6/11/2007

Good Morning Friends!

If you remember, I told you I was headed to Texas to the eWomen's Network Conference with Dahlynn. The primary reason I went, was to help her with all the details of her speaking engagement and multiple book signings. My personal motivation was to find several more resources to help me get my book published sooner rather than later. Dahlynn did a phenomenal job moderating a panel of four multi-million dollar business owners, all women, and the book signing after the panel spoke was so successful that the group following us was very unhappy. My personal mission was also accomplished. I am not at liberty to talk about the details right now, but suffice it to say, big changes are on the horizon for me and my professional life. I promise, I will keep all of you, first and foremost posted as this project develops. For now, let me say Dahlynn thank you for all of your support of me and my lofty dreams and I have never been more proud of you than I was watching you speak in front of more than a thousand CEO women on Saturday.

Being in Dallas surrounded by these wildly successful women I had the opportunity to confirm something I have felt for some time. In talking with these female entrepreneurs, I found a common thread of not only incredible strength but that they all somehow felt they were out of their league in the company of the other women. I have felt that way at different times in my professional life and even more so in my personal life. I am here to tell you, we are all so much more alike than we are different. If we just make the mindful choice to look at our strengths and accomplishments, we will see that we are more wildly successful than we think. That which we focus on grows. Focus on how successful you are and successful you will be. That is my motivator for today. Have a great day all week long!

Monday, June 4, 2007

MM 6/4/2007

Hi Friends,

It has been quite a week. Mason and I are both feeling better and part of that is due to Dave's return home! Yeah! He wasn't really gone all that long but it makes for a nice homecoming when we go away from each other. Something to look forward to

On Friday night, Mason and I met Dave at Julie's house in Clements and we went to the Clements Stampede. What a fun night. We were able to eat a BBQ dinner, have a few beers (juice boxes for Mason), enjoy the bull riding, and dance the night away to the live band. It was a night of inexpensive, family fun American style. Saturday we mostly just spent the day together and moved at a slower pace. Sunday, Dave had his National Guard drill and Mason and I went to the park for a picnic with some of our friends. Dave got home early enough that we ended the day having a BBQ in the back yard. For all the hard work that has been on my plate lately, this weekend was a little slice of heaven.

It is back to the grind today and I have to get 5 days of work done in 3. I leave for Texas on Thursday morning with my dear, great, wonderful friend Dahlynn. We are going to the e-women's network conference where she is a guest speaker. I know we will have a blast and I will have lots to share with you next week. I have to go now and see how big I can make my hair! You do know, everything is big in Texas!

In the spirit of Father's Day and the wonderful father I think Dave is, here is my Motivator for today:

A Thought on Fathers

"Of all my father's teachings, the most enduring was the one about the true measure of a man. That true measure was how well he provided for his children, and it stuck with me as if it were etched in my brain."

— Sidney Poitier, The Measure of a Man

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

MM 5/29/2007

Hi Friends,

I hope everyone had a wonderful long, holiday weekend. Dave is in Southern CA for training so it was just Mason and me to fend for ourselves. We had a garage sale on Saturday to raise money for our big Saturday night at Poobah this year and got almost 1/2 way there. Good for us, I am a pretty successful fundraiser so I think we will get there.

I don't know what it is like where you are, but allergies have been as bad as I have ever experienced. I suffered all last week and through the weekend with a sinus headache that I just could not shake. I woke up today finally feeling a little more normal but my nose is still stuffy.

Not much else happening at the Partak homestead, so go see what you can get done in the short week we have and I'll hopefully have something more interesting to say next week!

Lots of love,

Kathy

If you don't like the way people are treating you, or the way your kids are behaving, stop what you are doing and take a good long look in the mirror. Look deep inside yourself and see how you are treating you and how you are behaving. It is very likely that you are not treating yourself as nicely as you would like to be treated and your kids are behaving the way you are showing them to behave. This became very clear to me this weekend while having a very mature conversation with my 3 1/2 year old. Can you see this in your life too?

Monday, May 21, 2007

MM 5/21/2007

Hi Friends,

I have to pass this week. I am buried with work and just need to get it done.
Have a great week and I'll see you next Monday.

Monday, May 14, 2007

MM 5/14/2007

Hi Friends,

This is one of those "better late than never" MM's. This is shaping up to be a week where those of you who talk to me during the week, will ask me how I
do it.

Happy Mother's Day to all you mothers out there. Whether you mother children, animals or men, you deserve a day! My mothers day was really nice. Dave and Mason let me sleep in and the we went to Roseville to Denio's Farmers Market and walked around looking at stuff. Yes, stuff. We bought some fresh fruit and veggies and then came home. We just spent the day together and then the best part, Dave, Mason and Riley through me a parade! A real parade with streamers, noise makers and singing. It was the high light of my day. Dave made a great dinner and we ate outside in the back yard. What more could a girl ask for?

Dave is getting ready to be gone for two weeks and I am trying to do anything I need his help to do before he leaves. Work is busy and I am waiting to get my edits for my book. I am sure I am way more excited and motivated to see this project completed and that is the double edged sword of a highly motivated individual. Dahlynn has her plate full, too and this is just another book for her so my enthusiasm can be trying! So off we all go. Make this week great and thanks to Mary for today's motivator:

Forget mistakes. Forget failures. Forget everything except what you're going to do now and do it. Today is your lucky day.-Will Durant
Love you all lots!

Monday, May 7, 2007

MM 5/7/2007

Hi Friends,

Happy Sunny Monday!

The weekend was fun but the wind sort of put a damper on it for me... I don't particularly like the wind, it makes me feel disoriented, out of sorts, in addition to the major runny nose, I just don't care for windy days. Mason and I did not let that stop us from having a fun Cinco de Mayo. Kleenex in hand, we went to Folsom for their Family Fun Day. We met Teresa and her grandson Nicholas (who is exactly one year younger than Mason) and went to the zoo, rode the train and then went to have lunch at Hacienda. It was really a nice day. Mason and I came home to take a little cat nap and then we went to downtown Auburn for another community Cinco de Mayo party. That was less fun, so we came home and had a dinner picnic in the backyard. We watched a movie together and called it a night.

Dave made it home from LA on Sunday and we had a wonderful afternoon. Dave and Mason worked in the yard and then we all had a wonderful dinner on the deck. While they were doing yard work, Mason found a BINGO game and insisted we play. Even though he is still too little, we played on the deck in the twilight until it was just too dark to stay out anymore. Dave grilled salmon and we had our first fresh, sweet, white corn of the season. And speaking of the season, Dave gave me two cherry trees for mother's day two years ago and this year, yes! They have cherries! I love cherries and even more than that, these are from our very own trees! I think we will have to call them "Love Cherries" Laughing!

So now it is off to another work week and I expect this to be a big winning week. a local radio station is giving away $1000 twice each day and I have recruited my more local friends to sign up and I will listen for their name to be called, They will then have 20 minutes to call in and claim their check. I have a very good feeling that more than one of us will win some of that money. I'll let you know next week. Have a great week!

Kathy

Practicing Gratitude

If you turn things around in your head to simply be happy being, you will find that you will have more reasons to be happy. This simply means if you feel happy, you will be happy. The things we attract to ourselves are directly related to how we feel. Feel happy? You attract other people and things happy. Feel crabby? You attract other people and things crabby. It really is that simple.

Being a Monday, lots of people will buy into being crabby because it is Monday. What a silly reason to feel negatively. Make it a point to be happy and celebrate Monday and watch how people around you react. If nothing else, you will have a better day emphasizing being happy, and after all, what really is there not to be happy about?

Kathy Partak - Original

Monday, April 30, 2007

MM 4/30/2007

Happy, happy day!

We had a wonderful weekend. As many of you know, it was Wild West Stampede weekend here in Auburn and that means Rodeo! We love the rodeo and Mason of course, was all about living the cowboy way. He was very upset that he is still not old enough to ride a sheep (Mutton Bustin) but we promised him next year he would be a contender. On Wednesday at the opening ceremonies for the Rodeo, Mason participated in a dummy roping contest (he's not the dummy, the dummy is the bull, the target) and though he did not win, he was the first little guy to actually rope the dummy all by himself! I have to say, I was quite proud that he participated, followed the rules and didn't chicken out.

Yesterday we did what I call "Happy Home" work. It is all the stuff you have to do to keep your home happy. I got up before the boys and took my coffee and Sunday paper out back to read in the morning sunshine. Later we organized the garage and started getting our camping gear in order, and then we moved to the backyard to clean the waterfall and get it running again. That was a dirty job but it was so nice when it was all clean and running with all that joyous noise. We celebrated our happy home with a pre Cinco de Mayo celebration in the backyard with meat and veggies on the grill served with fresh guacamole and Corona's with lime. What a great weekend!

I am ramped up for the coming week. I have lots to do for all my jobs but I'm feeling especially able. It is a funny thing, finishing my book has made me realize I can do anything... literally anything. I thought several times this weekend when I didn't want to finish a dirty task (cleaning the sledge out of the bottom of the pond), "hey, I wrote a book, I can finish this." From that standpoint, it is nothing but good. Have a wonderful week and here is today's Motivator:

Think about what your wildest dream is. When you come up with what it is you want to do, where you want to go whatever it is, take some action to find out what it will really take to make it happen. Just for grins, look into it. Then, after you have some info, dream bigger because no matter what it is, it is small potatoes compared to what you could actually accomplish or achieve!

Lots of love and big smiles from the beautiful Sierra Foothills!

Monday, April 23, 2007

MM 4/23/2007

Hello friends,

This motivator is going to be short and sweet. I spent this weekend in isolation finishing my book. Some of you know a little about it and most of you don't, just suffice it to say I am very excited and will let you know more when I can.

After 17 hours of writing and more than 30,000 words this weekend alone, I am pooped!

Have a great week!

Monday, April 16, 2007

MM 4/16/2007

Good day Friends!

What a gorgeous day it is here in Auburn and with the rain we had over the weekend, it is that much cleaner and clearer.

Dave had National Guard this weekend and Mason and I got all kinds of stuff done. We did some work, cleaned the house, ran errands, showed houses, pulled weeds, and replanted some of the ice plants we lost in the freeze. The best part of the weekend was when we played in the rain. We went out and stomped in the puddles and even found one really great puddle that was deep and muddy! Oh, that was the best! After playing in the rain we went right to a warm bath (for Mason) and settled in for the evening.

Last week I asked about manners in kids and it was so cool to hear back from many of you. The responses were all different, but all the same in that it seems we care and we want well mannered kids in our lives. IT was really fun to hear back from all of you and to see what you think and best of all, to get your advice so let me pose another question or thought;

How do you feel about helping? Helping with your time and/or money? What I mean by this is, My experience has been that most people find it hard to ask for help and yes, there are many kinds of help. I find it interesting that people qualify who needs help and who doesn't. That is to say that it doesn't matter if I feel the need to ask, most will feel the need to qualify my need and then decide to help or not. To take it a step further, if I were to ask for financial help before I was in dire straits and you determined my situation wasn't that bad so you let me continue to work on it and it continued to worsen until it was so bad that I was losing my home, it would be said by some, why didn't you ask for help before it got this bad? There in lies the point and the real question, why does someone have to be in a dire or life and death situation before people really want to get in the game and help? Do you think this is the case?

For the record, I am not in dire straits, or on my way to them but I have had similar experiences, one fairly recently. I have also been very lucky to have people help me unconditionally as I have helped others. I love this kind of stimulating conversation and you can certainly choose to participate or not.

Today's Motivator is wonderful and timely. I love you all and hope you have a wonderful week!

Enjoy!

Question your assumptions

What assumptions have you already made about today, and why? Consider that some of those assumptions may no longer be accurate, and may very well be holding you back.

It's comfortable and convenient to assume you can't do something. Yet such an assumption quickly turns into a continuing limitation that you place on yourself.

Things that were true for you many years ago may no longer have any validity. By holding on to those old assumptions, you prevent yourself from making the most of the new opportunities that come your way.

Think of how dramatically the world has changed in the last ten or twenty years. Have your assumptions about your own possibilities kept pace?

You may be carrying assumptions that were placed in your mind by people who no longer play a role in your life. Take a close look at the choices and decisions you make, at the goals and aspirations you hold, and examine the assumptions behind them.

Make it a point to regularly question your assumptions. By so doing, you're sure to find much value that you've been hiding from yourself.
Ralph Marston from The Daily Motivator
with permission www.dailymotivator.com

Monday, April 9, 2007

MM 4/9/07

Hi Friends!

Happy Easter. I know it is the day after, but I think it is never too late to wish someone a happy anything.

We had a great Easter weekend with a BBQ and egg hunt at Ken and Dahlynn's. Mason loved being with the other little kids and I loved decorating cupcakes with Lahre! What an artist she is! We left Orangevale and made our way to San Jose to spend the night with Dave's mom. We had dinner and a nice evening visit and Sunday morning, boy oh boy, the Easter Bunny came to visit. He left Mason a basket with a pair of real army PT shorts and T-shirt just like his dad wears, a whole herd of bulls and cows with calves and a little candy too. He hid eggs all through the house and Mason had a ball finding them. The best part was Riley getting up early and finding all the eggs first! He would find one and bat it all over listening to the candy rattle. When I would scold him and tell him to leave them alone, he would find another. It was priceless! After breakfast we went to Dave's sister's house for an early Easter dinner and a lovely, lovely visit in their backyard. It was a really nice day.

We found ourselves at home pooped out and still had laundry to do, dinner to make and Mason needed a bath something terrible. By 10 PM we were all in bed breathing "Z's".

I hope you had a wonderful Easter and if you have a minute, I would love to hear about it.

Instead of a motivator today, I want your insight. I have been doing some research into Manners and Etiquette, especially with our kids. I am wondering if you think manners are still alive today and if you think they are as important in today's society as they were years ago. Do we put our kids at risk teaching them to respect their elders when some of their elders could possibly harm them? Tell me what you think?

Lots of love and until next week.

Thursday, April 5, 2007

MM 4/5/2007


HI Friends,

Last week I wrote very little. As you know, we were in Truckee and weather conditions were not good for travel. We stayed the extra night and it was neat to be tucked away in a lovely winter home, but also a little stressful knowing we all had work commitments and appointments to keep or reschedule. We were up at the crack of dawn on Tuesday and even while we were cleaning the house and planning to close it all up, HWY 80 traveling west bound was still not open. Needless to say, by the time we were in the car, the road was open and we slowly headed up and over the hill. I am attaching a few shots of the snow for those of you who have not had a chance to frolic and play. For those of you who live in it, yes, it is novel for those of us who don't! Laughing.

Dave is back from Kentucky and we are all back to work and school. February is gone and March feels like it is half way over. Can you believe how time flies the older we get? Sheesh! The strange thing is that we have seen next to no "Old Man Winter" and Spring is pushing her way in. We need more rain and snow so we will have full lakes to ski on for Poobah. I hope you are all well and practicing gratitude. It seems like such a simple thing to do when in fact, it makes a huge difference in so many outcomes of our lives.

Have a wonderful week and I'll catch you next Monday!

Happiness is now

As long as you are preparing to be happy, you will not be. If you continue to see happiness as some distant goal to be reached, you will not experience it.

Happiness is now. The only time you can ever experience it is the moment that you are in.

Happiness is unconditional. When you put conditions on happiness, it immediately disappears.

Happiness makes no judgments or demands. When you focus on judging others and making demands of them, it drives happiness away from your life.

Though happiness is simple and uncomplicated, it is at the same time profound and sophisticated. For when you allow yourself to be truly happy, the positive energy can reach into every corner of your life.

Set aside the complaints, excuses, conditions and demands, and make a place for happiness in your world. Be happy, and you'll discover a whole new level of life's richness.
Ralph Marston from The Daily Motivator

Monday, April 2, 2007

MM 4/2/2007

Hi Friends!

I am a little late today because I got up early and hit the ground running. I came back to the house to eat some lunch, and while sitting on my front porch with a big green salad, I realized I didn't send out my MM. So before I get back to work, I thought I would jot a few lines.

Over the weekend we celebrated Julie's 40th birthday. It was a beautiful day and the event was held at Vino Piazza in Lockeford. We had great food, live music and the best mix of people. We danced, ate delicious food, drank good wine, and ultimately celebrated good friends.

The best part for me is that it turned out that Dave was able to be there with us. Dave was supposed to be in So. CA for the whole month of April and through a paperwork snafu, he was sent home and has to reschedule. Hooray for us! Dave will be home for Easter and get to color eggs with us too!

OK, I have to get back to work... Have a wonderful week and make great things happen! I love this, it speaks to the nurturers that we are as women and every man on my list will appreciate it as well.

Lots of love,

A Thought on Hope and Perseverance

"The woman who holds a child in her arms and says, 'It's okay that they laughed at you. You are smart; I promise you are'; the woman who holds a man in her arms and says, 'You are no less of a man for having lost your job; to me, you are brilliant and strong'; the woman who can give hope to those who have no reason to hope; the woman who can endure deep pain and know that this too shall pass, and can hold on till it does—the woman who can do and say these things, and has the courage to mean them, carries a conviction that makes them true."
— Author Marianne Williamson

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

MM 3/26/2007

Hi Friends!

It seems I have been having some e-mail address trouble and thanks to Miss Diana, I was able investigate and find that many of you had been deleted from the MM list. I think when I went in and made changes to my address book in general, combined with working with the evite system, changes were inadvertently made. With that, if I put you back in the loop and you don't want to be here, let me know and I will take you out. We also have a few new names added to the list.

This weekend was leisurely and fun. Dave was gone with the National Guard so it was Mason and me to fend for ourselves. Before Mason got home from school, I got the house cleaned and boy did that feel good! Everything dusted, floors vacuumed and swept, dishes done, everything picked up and I even cleaned the stove! Not just wiped down, really cleaned. From there, Mason and I had a really wonderful Friday night of dinner at home, popcorn and two movies. We snuggled up on the couch and watched the Farewell Season of Disneyland's Main Street Electrical Parade (my favorite) and then we watched Barnyard.

Saturday, we ran a couple of necessary errands and tried to get Mason's hair cut. No such luck with that, the place was packed and had a 2 hour wait. At 2 O'clock I went to a girls poker party and that was really fun! I didn't get to stay to the end because I only had a sitter until six but it was really a good time anyway.

Sunday, we had breakfast and I made extra waffles for this week. We read the paper, watched cartoons and before we knew it, it was noon and time for lunch and Mason's nap. David and Lisa Anderson stopped by on their way home from Truckee and Dave even made it home before they had to leave. We wrapped the weekend up with a little play in the backyard, a soak in the hot tub, dinner and the Electrical Parade again (now Mason's favorite).

So now we are all off and running with a new week. Let me suggest you mix it up a little, do something you wouldn't normally do. Like what? Introduce yourself to a coworker you don't know. Drive to work a different route. Bring your lunch and put some thought into what you will make or if you bring your lunch normally, eat out! I don't know, I just think it makes life more interesting when we break out of our regular patterns. Mason and I stayed in out pajamas all day on Sunday. Everyone kept asking why we were still in our jammies and my response was "why not?"

Have a great week and I'll see you next Monday. I love this quote, I hope you do too!

Lots of love,

If you don't go after what you want, you'll never have it. If you don't ask, the answer is always no. If you don't step forward, you're always in the same place.
Nora Roberts

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Daffodils!

Hi Friends,

What a glorious weekend it was! I hear rain in on it's way and that is OK because we need it but this weather has been heavenly!

This weekend started off with a wonderful, long awaited girls lunch in Sutter Creek on Friday. Dahlynn, Teresa and I had lunch in a lovely tea room. It was elegant, delicious and so pretty. The best part was being together and strolling the antique shops after lunch before we all had to be back home to jobs, kids, family and all other forms of responsibility. It reminded me that we absolutely need to make time to turn off our phones, take the day off from work and be with the people who mean the most to us. It is uplifting and necessary to refuel with the energy of those we admire, and I certainly admire both of these women.

Saturday was about running errands and getting stuff done around the house. Being St. Patrick's Day it was also a planned special night out. Paul, James, Lisa, Dave and I all went to our favorite country bar a few miles away for some music and dancing. Dave made a delicious traditional corned beef and cabbage dinner and we headed out for a night of fun, and fun we had! The country dancing started off OK but this bar has another open air night club in the back playing a lot of classic rock and top 40 dance music. It was how we rounded out the night, singing and dancing loud and proud. I laugh because when you hear people sing in a club, well, I guess you don't hear them but for most of us, it is not really something to be proud of!

We wrapped up the weekend by visiting Daffodil Hill and having a wonderful lunch outside in the tiny town of Volcano. From there we drove to Jackson where they had the Daffodil Days festival in full force. We walked around a little and gave Mason the opportunity to visit a real Old Fashioned candy store where he got to hand pick his very own candies. It was after 3 PM when we headed home and made one last stop to visit Ken and Dahlynn for a little before we came home to BBQ dinner. While dinner cooked, we played Nerf baseball with Mason and he just thinks hitting the ball with the bat is the best thing since picking out your own candy at the candy store. Although, I bet given the choice, he would take the candy store option!

I hope you all had an equally enjoyable weekend. If not, make plans for next weekend and make this week great. Remember, you can want it, you can think it and you can believe it is possible but if you are not willing to act on it, "it" will never live. This Motivator is especially poignant and I think necessary to remember as you set out to make this coming week great!

"Hope without action is destructive because it goes to magical thinking."
— Dr. Robin Smith

Monday, March 12, 2007

Winter's Not Gone Yet!

Hi friends,

What a week last week was. I was sick and didn't even realize how sick I was until it had past and I was feeling better. I knew I was a little under the weather but I just kept right on working. I was going through the motions, catching cat naps everywhere I could and going to bed each night by 8 PM. I even fell asleep in my car in an AM/PM parking lot in Woodland when I realized I was 30 minutes early for an appt. The most amazing thing about us as beings and bodies is that when our bodies need something and we don't respond, it usually will impose sanctions on us. The same can be said for our minds. I was exhausted and only had 30 minutes. I fell into a deep sleep and woke up with 10 minutes to spare. By Friday I was really feeling better and it was only then that I realized how bad I had been feeling all week.

So here we are on the tail of a most gorgeous weekend and the week ahead promises to be equally nice. It seems we have not had a winter at all and Spring is here. I have to say, as much as I like this warm weather, I think Mother Nature has a storm or two still up her sleeve before we should put our long sleeves and pants away. But since it was so nice today, Dave, Mason, Riley and I went for a mid morning walk and made it home for lunch. Dave settled in to watch the race and I sat out in the backyard and wrote for over four hours while Mason played and Riley slept at my feet. We had dinner together, watched America's Funniest Home videos and got Mason off to bed. After the Sunday night meal plans for the week ahead were done, Dave and I sat in the hot tub under the most gorgeous starry skies and before we knew it we had to say good bye to that wonderful day.

I hope you had a weekend as nice as ours was and your week ahead is productive. I have lots to do to make up for poor performance last week but I think I can do it. Have a wonderful week and I'll see you next Monday!

Lots of love,
Kathy

Everything Matters

It is important to visualize what you wish to accomplish. It is also essential that you put that vision into action.

It's great to know precisely where you plan to go. Yet for that plan to be of any real value, you must act on it with commitment and persistence.

Successful action is more than just a once-in-a-while effort. The actions that bring about the most value are the actions that are fully integrated into every moment of life.

Real success is more than a method or a technique. Real success comes from who and what you most consistently and authentically are.

Every corner of your world, every moment of your time, every person and pursuit and passion in your life all matter. The time you spend playing has just as much influence as the time you spend working, for it all affects the whole person you are.

Seek to integrate positive purpose into everything you are, and into all that you touch. Live as though everything matters, and you'll bring magnificent achievements to life.

Ralph Marston from The Daily Motivator with permission www.thedailymotivator.com

Monday, March 5, 2007

We Made It Out Of The Snow!

Hi Friends,

Last week I wrote very little as you know we were in Truckee and weather conditions were not good for travel. We stayed the extra night and it was neat to be tucked away in a lovely winter home but also a little stressful knowing we all had work commitments and appointments to keep or reschedule. We were up at the crack of dawn on Tuesday and even while we were cleaning the house and planning to close it all up, HWY 80 traveling west bound was still not open. Needless to say, by the time we were in the car, the road was open and we slowly headed up and over the hill. I am attaching a few shots of the snow for those of you who have not had a change to frolic and play. For those of you who live in it, yes, it is novel for those of us who don't! Laughing. The last shot is actually of the white out conditions, not just a bad picture.

Dave is back from Kentucky and we are all back to work and school. February is gone and March feels like it is half way over. Can you believe how time flies the older we get? Sheesh! The strange thing is that we have seen next to no Old Man Winter and Spring is pushing her way in. We need more rain and snow so we will have full lakes to ski on for Poobah. I hope you are all well and practicing gratitude. It seems like such a simple thing to do when in fact, it makes a huge difference in so many outcomes of our lives.

Have a wonderful week and I'll catch you next Monday!

Love, Kath


Happiness is now

As long as you are preparing to be happy, you will not be. If you continue to see happiness as some distant goal to be reached, you will not experience it.

Happiness is now. The only time you can ever experience it is the moment that you are in.

Happiness is unconditional. When you put conditions on happiness, it immediately disappears.

Happiness makes no judgments or demands. When you focus on judging others and making demands of them, it drives happiness away from your life.

Though happiness is simple and uncomplicated, it is at the same time profound and sophisticated. For when you allow yourself to be truly happy, the positive energy can reach into every corner of your life.

Set aside the complaints, excuses, conditions and demands, and make a place for happiness in your world. Be happy, and you'll discover a whole new level of life's richness.
Ralph Marston from The Daily Motivator with permission www.thedailymotivator.com

Monday, February 26, 2007

Snowbound!

Hello All!

We get all kinds of gifts and they come in many different formats. Today we are being given the gift of time. I say that because we are in Truckee and had planned to come home this morning. Yesterday when the big storm blew in, they closed roads over the summit so all the travelers planning to go home yesterday are sitting in traffic today. To make matters worse for them, the storm is not any better today and though they have not closed the roads, they are holding traffic for winds (110 mph over the summits) and periodic white out conditions. So we are staying over one more night.

I have to keep this short today since I am on Miss Mary's computer with cellular wireless card and this fancy technology is a by the minute deal.

Have a wonderful week and we'll send pictures when we get home!

Lots of love,

Kathy

Monday, February 19, 2007

President's Day

Happy President's Day!

Hopefully you have the day off but being a working mother, I never get the day off. Well, that's not all the way true, Dave did give me Mother's Day off and it was wonderful, but most other days, "Hi - Ho, Hi - Ho, it's off to work I go..."

So yesterday I wrote two offers on houses for both my clients I am representing. I am keeping my fingers crossed that they both end up accepted and I can stop showing houses every evening instead of being home with my boys. I guess if I was home I would be studying for my brokers test and writing my book. This is a year of work, work, work and prosper, prosper, prosper! The cool thing is that I am quite comfortable with the real estate contract so when the opportunity presents itself at any point in the future, I will not only be ready but confident.

I have lots more to tell but have to save it for next week. I have to go to bed so I can get up leaving enough time to workout before I start another very busy day. Have a great week and make great things happen in your life starting with today!

Lots of love,

Kathy

You are worthy

You are worthy of the best in life. It's not because anyone tells you so or gives you permission to be, but because you know deep down that you are.

You have every reason to feel great about the good and valuable things you have done. You have the ability to expand on that goodness, on that value, on your own special gifts.

Where you are is a very good place to be. For you are in a position to truly make a difference by expressing and fulfilling your most deeply held values and dreams.

Certainly things are not perfect, and your world is filled with difficult challenges. Yet there is real treasure hidden within those challenges, for you have what it takes to move successfully through them.

You know how great it feels to accomplish something positive and meaningful. Listen to that feeling, for it connects you to your purpose and your ability to do great things.

Whatever you can imagine, you are worthy of reaching. Choose to make everything in your life worthy of the unique and valuable person you are.
Ralph Marston from The Daily Motivator with permission www.thedailymotivator.com