Ignore the Fear—and Press on to the Finish Line.

feet going down the stairs--fear of finish lineStop me if you’ve heard this before:

My psychology is very weird.

Or maybe not. Maybe you’ve had this experience too: You’re chugging along, making real progress on a project, and then you think, ‘But what will I do with myself when this is finished?’ I used to say this about our various landscaping endeavors at our house in Virginia. What would we do on Saturdays when we got all of that stuff done?

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Carelessness Strikes Again–Or How I Failed to Show Up for Jury Duty

Well, I guess it’s a life lesson when you finally get around to cleaning off your desk only to find the jury duty notice telling you that you were supposed to be at the courthouse at 9:00 AM and it’s . . . around 12:30 PM. The thing of it is, I did remember that notice. I remembered it last week, and I found it, and I was vastly relieved to see that I didn’t have to worry about it until last night after 5:00 when I was supposed to call and see if I had to come in. It was the old “oh, I’ll remember it” thing. I have plenty of resources at my disposal to keep track of my obligations, including Google calendar and Todoist, but they don’t do me any good unless I use them. For some reason, in spite of all evidence to the contrary, I figured that I’d remember. So I had to do my best to fix the situation, e-mailing

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More Pre-Holiday Food Thoughts

artistic plate of fettuccine and mushroomsWell, I had a nice post planned for today, something about the difference between self-awareness and self-absorption. Instead, I’m writing about food again, this time quoting from another book, Born Round: A Story of Family, Food and a Ferocious Appetite

I mentioned this book in another post, over a year ago, and I was reminded of it by a little phrase that popped into my head: “one tiny chop.” I knew the words were from this book, and I was determined to find it and put it into 

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The Holidays Are Upon Us–Prepare by Reading this Book!

The Skinny: How to Fit into Your Little Black Dress Forever by Melissa Clark and Robin Aronson, Meredith Books, 2006.

Well, Thankgiving is next week. Kind of crept up on me, to be honest, as I’ve been somewhat consumed with all the other food events in my life going on right now. I don’t even know what my responsibilities are going to be for next Thursday, as my dear mother-in-law will be in charge of the meal and I’ll just do what she tells me to do. It’ll be our first TG here in the new space. Have to tell you, by the way, that this past weekend was the second retreat rehearsal of the year for the Cherry Creek Chorale and also the second one I put together in my beautiful little kitchen, and it again performed flawlessly. So nice and compact! And I still love my stove.

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How Many Seconds?

clockface with second handWe’re in the process of changing the title of this blog from “Intentional Happiness” to “Intentional Living,” and part of the reason I didn’t get much posted last week was because of that change—I wanted to have the new banner up. But that hasn’t happened yet; this post is about a week old. As I’ve continued to write on various subject of interest to me (and to you, I hope) I’ve realized that not everything I write falls neatly under the heading of happiness, and that my posts about food and books fit into this

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Food Fads Debunked

The Gluten Lie and The Gluten Lie book b Alan LevinovitzOther Myths about What You Eat by Alan Levinovitz, Ph.D., originally published in 2015 by Regan Arts, now available in a variety of formats. (Book image and title are both affiliate links; if you click through to the Amazon page and buy the book there I will earn a small commission at no additional cost to you.)

I first became aware of this book because its author was featured on the Freakonomics Radio podcast, to which you should subscribe and faithfully listen. (And then you should read the Freakonomics book, Freakonomics [Revised and Expanded]: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything.

Anyway, the author of this book, Alan Levinovitz, was interviewed not too long ago on the show, and since I’m a total fan of any author who wants to punch a hole in our society’s various food fads and manias, I made sure to get hold of his book.

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Where Will Your Month Go?

Nov. 1 leaves fallingSometimes I think that this blog wouldn’t have many entries if I didn’t do so much cribbing from other sources. Gretchen Rubin is a big crib, but another one is Laura Vanderkam, whom I’ve mentioned before. She’s quite a gal; I last wrote about her in this post about downtime. In addition to her quasi-daily blog posts she also sends out a weekly newsletter that sums up her week or gives ideas for the week or month to come, appropriately called “A Week’s Worth.” (The link is to the signup form.)

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Lessons from the Dentist’s Chair

dentist chair with instrumentsI know, I know: this small-things-every-day idea comes up over and over again in this blog because I struggle with it so much. I devoted a whole chapter in my book to the idea of “the power of small things.” (Read that chapter here.) Becoming more aware of how counterproductive it is to let things pile up has helped me to improve my consistency even as I experience the boredom of putting things away, making the bed, wiping down the bathroom counter, etc., etc. It’s a total drag, but the results are great. In fact—stop me if you’ve heard this before—it has struck

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Is Your Procrastination Costing You?

half-closed window, closing window, window of time, prorastinationTwo ways my procrastination is costing me right now:

1. I missed getting my material on the choral masterpiece Carmina Burana ready in time for the fall concert season. This short e-book has been on the back burner for at least a year and probably longer–I can’t remember when I first came up with the idea of packaging the posts I wrote for the Cherry Creek Chorale’s 2013 performance into some sort of sellable item for other choral groups.

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