Sunday, September 25, 2011

A Sugar-Free Family

This afternoon while shopping at Trader Joe's I encountered a family whose diet is strictly sugar-free. The mum was clearly British and the dad was American. There were two or three kids.

The mum and dad read the labels as they shopped. As the kids would pick up a package of cookies, the mum would tell them, "We won't be getting that but thanks for showing it to me." I noticed that the kids would repeatedly pick up stuff that was sugar-loaded and they would be corrected. On no occasion did they whine or cry, but only gracefully comply.

I shared my astonishing observation with an employee who was at the demo booth and she said that she had also taught her two daughters to live the same way. She said that the girls were allowed to have dessert a day. After dinner when she offered the girls dessert, one declined it, saying she had one earlier when she got home from school. They apparently learned the art of moderation with a food that is proven to be highly addictive and even worse than heroine in that it can take much longer to go through withdrawal.

Oh my, if more families would do this, what a wonderful place the world would be to live in!

I'm reminded of a time back in junior high that I had a classmate who never ate sweets. She had a good attitude and didn't seem to feel deprived. Instead, she was very bright and even-tempered and content. I wish I had learned early on the value of self control, especially in the area of the sweet tooth. I believe I would be a lot further ahead in life than I am.

I also know of someone who had difficulty as a young person in school. He later discovered on his own that he was sensitive to vanillin which when he eliminated it from his diet, it solved some hyperactivity issues for him.

I know of another case where the mother eliminated artificial food coloring from her son's diet and it made the difference of failure and success for him. He is now successfully employed and fulfilled in what he does.

It would behoove us to become more keenly aware of the effects of foods and substances taken into our bodies. We should never take them for granted. We are as invincible as our habits enforce.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Today in the City

City Hall & Civic Center

Today I went to the IRS to deal with my taxes. I had gotten a month's extension which was to run out tomorrow. I ended up having to schedule a new appointment. I will see about getting any penalty removed.

Meanwhile, I decided to stop at the City Hall just for something to do since it's a pretty building. While I was a ways off I could hear horns honking. I asked a passerby if he knew what the commotion was about and he said he didn't except that appeared to be taxi drivers in front of City Hall. I told him I was heading over there just to take pictures and asked if he was just visiting as he had a British-sounding accent. He was. I asked him to join me for a tour of the building. He accepted my invitation. He had his camera with him. It turns out he is visiting from Australia and was out for a friend's wedding and was out here for a few days. His name is Dwayne.

We walked around City Hall and took pictures. He was fascinated by the architecture and we also wandered into an area that is lit with a skylight ceiling and had some display boxes with model buildings inside them which he liked.

Meanwhile, the whole time at City Hall the honking continued and their were picketers outside. I never fully understood the cause but I told Dwayne about our recent demonstration at the Capital and how much more civil we were.

Then I led us through the rows of trees outside in front of City Hall. We walked to Market Street and headed northeast. We stopped somewhere for a bit to eat and he treated. It was very nice because I was broke and could not afford lunch. I had helped him out with some sort of itinerary or to do list for the remainder of his visit. I gave him my card asking him to email me, telling me how he spent the rest of his time.

Then we walked to Powell where we parted. He plans to take the ferry tomorrow to Sausalito and also visit Coit Tower. He may be visit Union Square this afternoon too.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

My New Guatemalan Purse

A few weeks ago I discovered the Mission Thrift Store in the Mission District. I was so thrilled. It's funky and retro like a store I have shopped at in Haight-Ashbury called Aardvark's Odd Ark. It turns out that it's a sister store, and there are a couple others too. This one has the lowest priced items of all of them because of the overhead. So it's another good reason to shop at this one.

When I was in there for the first time a few weeks ago, I saw a purse that caught my eye which was behind the counter on a stack of other merchandise. I inquired about it but was told it was yet to get priced and the manager was not in right then. I called back to find out more but was unable to make the needed connection for the needed info. So I gave up and figured it was not for me.

Yesterday I showed up and there it was displayed with other purses. It was marked for $14.00. I decided to grab it and ask them to come down on the price. They did and let me have it for $10. I left one happy customer and told them I will keep coming back.

It's fabulously made and I got to use it today. It holds a lot and I had to knot the handle as it hangs too low. It works perfectly and I enjoy using my new bag.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Recent "March in March" in Sacramento

Last Monday I went to Sacramento on a bus with my school protesting the budget cuts that have hit our education, in this case on the community college level statewide. We had a good turnout considering the rain. We carried signs and shouted chants. We rallied in front of the State Capitol. I took many photos and videos to document the event. I posted them on the Web for your viewing. Here are links to those albums.


I also want to commend all who attended this important event. You were all so awesome and I could not help but notice how all the participants picked up after themselves, placing their trash in the proper receptacles. Thank you all so much!! I'm sure that had to have spoke volumes to those who we were addressing with our heartfelt message.

Yesterday in class we had our midterm exam. Also, due was our HTML assignment which we had to upload in a folder containing six files. I had missed class on Monday due to the rally in Sacramento and I needed some help which a classmate so graciously offered me. If not for her help, I would not have been able to complete the work due for our class. I thanked her for "saving my life." She in turn, with others, thanked me for saving their future by going to Sacramento on their behalf.

Yay Classmates! Yay School! Yay Team!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

A Living Example of Peace

This weekend I had the pleasure of reconnecting in person with a friend from high school whom I had not seen in forty years, and whom I located through Facebook. It was a brief but wonderful meeting. He had come up from LA on business. He has developed greatly in character since I first knew him back in the 70s. I really appreciate seeing people change for the far better in their journey in life. This special friend has demonstrated this.

I would never have known that he was once temperamental and hard to be around in years back because he is so laid back and easy to be around now. It's easy for one to be themselves in his presence without the danger or threat of being judged or found fault with.

I have just learned he underwent stress management training and applied what he learned. There's the key right there: He applied what he learned. It had to take some courage to do this because one would have to face themselves squarely in the mirror and be brutally honest with themselves about a pattern of theirs that is not working in their favor and bringing them joy, peace and fulfillment.

I was really impacted by his example and feel encouraged by the liberty that now flows in his life. He is not afraid of failure nor does he live in condemnation over past mistakes. From what I have observed, I perceive that he is a caring and loving husband to his wife and a giving and attentive father to his children.

He is a creative thinker and dreams big with great aspirations for the future of his family and career. I anticipate witnessing a nice unfolding of them in the days to come. I am so grateful to have reconnected with him. He is a fine human being and a glowing example of the kind of guy I hope to meet and marry someday.