Thursday, March 31, 2011

More Free Ideas for Your 101 List

A while back I wrote a post with a few suggestions for 101 List items that don't cost anything.  I mentioned the other day that I am trying to not spend money these days, which has helped me think of a few more free options.

- Start a journal.  No, journals aren't free but I'd be willing to bet you have a few blank pieces of paper around the house.

- Send e-cards on birthdays.  While a card is a lovely sentiment, they can be expensive.  An e-card allows you to let your friend know you care, without using up your precious pennies.

- Make your bed everyday for a month.  Gretchen Rubin, the author of The Happiness Project, discusses the benefits of this simple chores.

Do you have any free things on your 101 list?

Song of the Day
You know what today needs?  A little Wham!  Please enjoy Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

If Driving Cross Country is Not on Your List

Is driving on your Life List?  It didn't make it on my 101 List.  I would love to see the country but I don't think I could handle that much time in the car.  This video provides a fun alternative to those of us who aren't ready for the big road trip.

Song of the Day
Today's song is Tom Cochrane's Life is a Highway.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Changing My Perspective on Spending

Lately I’ve been overwhelmed with the feeling of not having enough money.  It's wrong for me to feel this way, and I feel even worse about admitting it because I make plenty of money.  I’m well aware that I’m much better off than many, many people.  But hey, I’m in my twenties and I live in New York and I’m not perfect, so I’m feeling broke.  This situation can give you the blues, but I’ve decided to change my perspective about spending.  

I would ideally love to have more money so I could spend it on things I consider fun, like new clothes and going out to dinner.  But more money is not an option right now.  So instead I’ve started thinking about where I spend the money I already have.  I looked at my monthly expenses and my gym membership and Netflix stood out.  I also thought about my recent major purchases and my camera came to mind.  These are things I’ve already spent money on, so why the heck am I not using them.  Or more importantly, these are luxuries that I should be excited about.  So I’m shifting my focus...I’m going to stop wasting time pining over things I can’t afford and start enjoying the things I’m lucky enough to have already.

My friend Mandy is also going to change her perspective, taking advantage of where is spending her money.  She is already paying for obedience school for her dog, Chappy.  She has decided to step up his training, teaching him how to cook her dinner.  An excellent way to save money on going out.

Chef Chappy.  He should probably wear a hairnet.
Song of the Day
Today's song is The Beatles' Money (That's What I Want).

Thursday, March 24, 2011

If Writing is on Your List

If you have included writing on your 101 list (becoming a better writer, writing more often, writing a children’s book or screenplay, etc.) you should try a free writing class at Gotham Writers’ Workshop in NYC.   The classes are available on April 5th and 6th during the evening.  

#34 on my 101 List is to take a writing class so I will be attending the Creative Writing 101 and Nonfiction Writing 101 on the 5th.  Would love for you to join me!

Song of the Day
Today's song is David Bowie's Changes.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Dark Side of the Lens

My friend Mikey is Passionate about surfing with a capital "P". And like anyone with a passion, he wants to share it.  Mikey has shown me loads of surfing videos.  I think they are cool, but because I've only been surfing a few times I don't "get them" like he does.  But the other day he showed me a video that amazed me.  It educated and inspired me.  In other words, it made my hearts smile.  Dark Side of the Moon is a poetic account of why surf photographer, Mickey Smith, loves what he does.  This video seriously gives me goosebumps every time I watch it.  I could just look up the "lyrics," but I love that each time I watch it I find a new piece that is poignant and magical.

DARK SIDE OF THE LENS from Astray Films on Vimeo.

Thank you for sharing this with me Mikey.  I truly appreciate it.

Song of the Day
Another cool thing Mikey introduced me to is Xavier Rudd.  Please enjoy Messages.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

International Women's Day

Today marks the 100th anniversary of International Women's Day.  This day was created in Copenhagen and celebrated in 1911 in Austria, Denmark, Germany, and Switzerland.  Today it is recognized throughout the world.  It is a day to celebrate how far women have come and to discuss how to improve the future.  It is also a day to commemorate the amazing women that came before us and to fight for the women that are on their way.

I urge you to check out 150 Women Who Shake the World.  It features short bios of amazing women from Oprah, to Marina Pisklakova-Parker, who created a crisis clinic to help battered women in Russia, to Hou Yifan, the youngest-ever women's world chess champion.

On the first International Women's Day, over a million women AND men rallied for women's causes.  Today it remains a day for all of us to recognize that the world will be a better place when all people are treated with the dignity, respect, and freedom that is our birth right.

Song of the Day
Today's song is Whitney Houston's I'm Every Woman.

Monday, March 7, 2011

101 Things in 1001 Days: 55

It is ok to put things on your 101 list that you know how to do but haven't done in a long time.  55 on my List was to go skiing.  I grew up skiing, going at least once a week my entire childhood.  But I haven't been once in the past six years.  It is always too expensive or too far.  And that is why it was perfect thing to include on my 101 list...something that I love, but don't do.

This past weekend my best friend Mandy and I headed up to Mount Sunapee in New Hampshire.  We had an incredible day!

It was overcast and the forecast had said rain so the mountain was empty.  The conditions were perfect!

I was so relieved that skiing came back to me quickly.  I forgot how much I enjoyed it.  I've promised myself that next winter I'll make skiing a priority.  You can hold me to that!

Thanks for the awesome day Mands!

Song of the Day
Today's song is Ain't No Mountain High Enough.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Have a Fabulous Weekend!

I'm going to see my best buddies this weekend and I couldn't be more excited.

What are you doing this weekend?  Something fabulous I hope.  Maybe something from you 101 List!

Song of the Day
Today's song is Zac Brown Band's Chicken Fried.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

101 Things in 1001 Days: 99

#99 on my 101 List was to organize friend's closet.  To some this might sound like a nightmare, but it is my wet dream. Ick!  Need to rephrase...Let's just say my idea of a good time is a glass of wine and a crazy closet to tackle.  I've dabbled with the idea of becoming a professional organizer but I realize there is a big leap from cleaning up your stuff to someone else's, so I thought it would be best to start with a friend.  My friend Kate was a willing guinea pig, although she was surprised I only wanted mimosas as compensation.   But she is aware of my strange obsession (see "wet dream" comment above) with organizing and her closets were in dire straights, so we got started.

Kate being frustrated with the dire straightiness of her closet
Like most New Yorkers, Kate's problem is space.   But after assessing the amount of clothes she had and the space available, I knew there was hope.  There are three parts to organizing a closet.

Step 1: The Cleanse (not this type of cleanse).   I pulled out each item of clothing one at a time, and Kate decided if it went into one of three piles: Stay, Go, Assess Later.  A cleanse can be tough but it is necessary, so if you are having trouble, ask a friend to help (tempt them with mimosas).  Some things I urged her to keep, helping her rethink how she could wear them, while other things I had to gently nudge her to throw away; "Dude!  Those pants have front pleats!"  After all the sorting is done, go back through the Assess Later pile.  You will have a better understanding of what you have, so it will be easier to decide what you can get rid of.  By the end of the cleanse there were over five bags to go Good Will.  Most of clothing wasn't hard for Kate to part with.  She just didn't realize all the stuff she had because it was jammed in the back of her closet.

Part 2: Work With What You've Got.  Lots of people put off cleaning up their closets because they think they have to buy a lot of expensive organizing tools.  This is usually not the case.  Once everything is out of the closet, look at the shelves and space you have and rethink how you were using them.  Kate had two great hanging organizing units but they were so smooshed in the crowded closet that it was tough to get clothing in and out of them.  Once we cleared the space, those units became very useful.

Part 3: Go Shopping in Your Closet.  Kate is always saying she needs new shoes but what I discovered when we were cleaning was that she had a big box of fabulous shoes, but she never considered them because they were in a storage bin under her bed.  With the space we were able to make in the closet, we could display her shoes neatly on the floor, in plain site, and use the storage bin for out-of-season clothes.  

I promise that you will find things in your closet that you forgot you had.  And when you display your clothes in an orderly, non-smooshed way, you will feel more satisfied with what you have.

At the end of a long day of organizing, Kate’s excitement over her new closet made it all worth it.  It also helped that we were a little buzzed and that we found these awesome t-shirts.
Vixen Lounge and Let It Ride.  T-shirt time!
Is your closet in trouble?  I would be positively happy to help.

Song of the Day
Kate is a big ol' Biggie fan so today's song is Juicy.  

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Her Morning Elegance

This video makes me want to take a nap.  You never know what could happen!

Song of the Day
Today's song is Mariah Carey's Dream Lover.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Motivated by the Goddess

I'm embarrassed to admit that since I finished The Cleanse my eating has gone downhill.  Ok, I should be less hard on myself...I have picked up healthier eating habits and I've cut way back on eating meat.  But I am frustrated because I know how healthy I am capable of eating and, in turn, how good I'm capable of feeling.

I am motivated by goals and challenges, but I can't take on a major cleanse every time I want to eat a little better.  Luckily I'm also motivated by treats. I was dreading eating a something healthy for dinner even though I knew I should.  My internal angel and devil were bickering about what would be on the menu, a salad or a pizza, when I came to a fabulous comprise...The Goddess!  My  friend Jen recommended Annie's Goddess Dressing and if you haven't tried it, you must. So yummy.  As a treat for eating the salad, I was "allowed" get Goddess dressing.  I realize that this sounds like a Little House on the Prairie type treat (oranges for Christmas!?) but we have plenty of dressing already and I'm trying to be frugal these days, so it was a treat.  And my little tricked worked.  I'm finishing my salad now, feeling happy that I ate healthy, but also feeling content because of The Goddess.  

What is your motivating treat?

Song of the Day
Today's song is Belinda Carlisle's Heaven is a Place on Earth.
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