Fitness tips- Getting out this holiday for un-matched fun with the family

December 2nd, 2016 | by | lifestyle



Holidays are fast approaching. It is one of the few times of the year when I get the chance to stay close to my family. It is also the time when I like to experiment new things, just to spice up my life and that of my family.

I am a firm believer that the best times with a family are spent outdoors. Mother Nature has a lot of hidden wonders that we are yet to discover. And we cannot discover them if we insist on staying indoors. Outdoors holds unmatched potential for workouts, exploration and adventure for everybody.

In preparation for holidays, I always ensure to make a complete shopping list for items that we use over the holidays with the kids. Among the list, is attire that one can wear on different occasions.

I have always chosen to go for leggings instead of the usual pants because they are comfortable on my body and can function for a wide range of occasions.

Although some leggings brands get worn out quite easily, there are those that are quite durable. It is easy to get the best leggings by shopping from various online portals. Leggings are fashionable and can be worn by people with different types of bodies.

I have been wearing my leggings during my yoga classes and during workouts to avoid excessive sweating. Most of the leggings are made of high quality fabric that allows the skin the space to breath during extensive workouts.

This holiday season, I am planning to take my yoga exercises outdoors. With a mat, I only need to find a beautiful spot in a park, or on a beach while on our vacation. It is a great way of experiencing new things while enjoying what Mother Nature has to offer.

In order to spice up our holiday, I have listed a number of outdoor activities that we are going to engage in this holiday. They include kayaking, mountaineering and hiking. I had the opportunity of participating in kayaking during a team building session with my colleagues a few months ago and it was quite fun.

It is a fun way of performing workouts. Kayak also doubles up as a vessel for adventure. Kayaking is a great way of touring different sections of a water body such as a river or an ocean with a simple water craft that was invented several decades ago by the Inuit people.

As a mother, I also understand the importance of proper nutrition to my family during the holidays. Holiday season is a time when most people indulge in unhealthy eating habits that may result to weight gain and obesity.

I have lined up a number of activities to engage throughout the entire holiday, especially for the kids. For example, I have learnt of white tea benefits and other types of food products that enhance body metabolism which I will be introducing to my family over the holidays.

It is always good to ensure that the family consumes a balanced diet. It is the role of the parents to advice their kids on the importance of consuming healthy foods and their sources.

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Advantages of looking good and bulking up to get that muscular physique

May 31st, 2016 | by | lifestyle


Most everybody wants to look good. There are many advantages that come along with a fine look. When you look good, people will naturally want to associate with you. People will welcome you more easily. As such good looking people have an easier time in getting approval. Good looking people are subconsciously given priority by other people, good looking people can also be trusted more easily.

There are certain jobs that clearly show that the above statements are true. For example, many sales people or marketers are hired with a clear biasness on attractiveness. This is because an attractive sales lady or salesman will close deals faster and easier. This is because people will unwittingly want to be associated with them and they will trust them easily.

It is obvious that getting a spouse of your choice is also simpler due to the above reasons. Apart from the already stated realities, there is also the fact that people want to be associated with someone who’s attractive. A lady would want to introduce his attractive husband to his friends and family, similarly, a man would want to show off his beautiful wife to his associates.

Looking good gives one a lot of self-confidence. Knowing that your looks are welcomed by other people encourages you in doing some tough tasks such as starting a conversation, requesting for favors, making sales, giving public speeches, leading, or offering help.

Many times we are not quite satisfied with our natural look. Often we feel that we have some shortcomings in our physical appearance. A common scenario is when a person is overweight. An overweight person is usually not regarded as being attractive. A trim figure is commonly regarded as more attractive. As such, overweight people often try all kinds of ways to reduce their weight.

What about the people who feel that they are not big enough? This is a category that is not commonly addressed, however we have quite a few people who are not happy with their small bodies. This is especially the case with men. A muscular man is usually viewed to be more attractive. Masculinity is an attribute of manhood and many may feel inferior if they have scrawny bodies.

Eating more is not always a solution for thin people who want to grow bigger. Many have tried to cook and eat lots of starchy or fatty food in an attempt to grow bigger and they end up with no success. This is because often times the slim guys have a very high metabolism rate that uses up their food just as fast as they eat it up. There is also the danger of getting fat instead of getting muscular. A fat man is not a muscular man and getting fat may make you look even more unattractive.

The secret is to build muscle. This means working out with weights. Weight lifting forces the body to adapt by developing muscles. When body building by lifting weights it is important to take lots of proteins that are essential for the growth of the muscle. Some rich foods in protein are beans, meat, fish, eggs, and milk. To help build muscle faster, one can buy supplements that are rich in whey protein and take them as they continue with their weight lifting exercises.

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Taking care of my grandma as she bravely endured Alzheimer’s

May 31st, 2016 | by | lifestyle


Before my grandmother died, she had been my closest companion. I had lived with her for seven years since when I had found a job in town and had moved into her apartment with her.

My parents still lived in Sydney, Australia where my father works and where I had been living with them as I pursued my bachelor’s degree. However, I had never quite settled in the new country and always missed home. I especially missed my grandma who we had lived a few miles apart from and I had always visited her when I could.

When my father got a job transfer, we had to leave the country and leave my grandmother. At that time she was quite healthy and there were no worries about her managing to stay alone. My grandfather had died many years before during the Vietnam War. By then my grandmother was running a convenience store in her lovely neighborhood which she adored and the people adored her.

However, during our stay in Australia we realized that her health was deteriorating. She had been diagnosed with diabetes and arthritis had started attacking her joints. However, her biggest blow came with the realization that she was suffering from Alzheimer’s disease.

The news were devastating to all of us. Although my grandmother was adamant that she was okay and that the attack was mild, we knew that the effects would increase rapidly due to her advanced age. A major issue was getting someone to care for her. Alzheimer’s is a disease that needs one to have close personal care especially in the advanced stages. Despite the fact that she could get a hired aide, I decided that once I finished college I would work in her town and care for her.

Having studied as an accountant, getting a job in her town was easy. My grandmother was overjoyed when her darling grandchild came to live with her. We had always been great buddies from the days when she dotted on me as a little baby.

My grandmother’s conditions were not so bad at first and she managed to continued running her store albeit with the help of her long employee Jose. Her arthritis was however getting worse. With time it became harder for her to handle kitchen appliances and I had to get special feeding equipment for her. I had to help take up most of the cleaning and cooking duties.

Due to my job, the tasks at home were often overwhelming for me and I finally hired a house help to help with the major chores. I however continued to take care of cooking and managing my grandmother’s medication. I ensured she took her medication and her food supplements on time. She particularly liked her apple cider vinegar which she said was a top antioxidant.

I continued taking my grandmother to her store until when her condition became too advanced. After that I continued to nurse her from home with the help of a hired temporary elderly care nurse. When my grandmother passed on, I lost a great friend.

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Finding the perfect workplace to make my life interesting

May 31st, 2016 | by | lifestyle


Unlike many people, every day I wake up optimistic about the day ahead. It is not because I am living a rock star lifestyle but simply because I work at an awesome place. I am a creative designer and I work for a media and advertising company.

When I think about it, it is not my job per se that makes me look forward to each day. Not that I do not love my job, I do, I really do. I do not know what I would do if it were not for being a creative designer. But this is not what makes me happy about my work since I realize that there are places where I could work as a creative designer and I would be pathetically miserable. A good example is at my former employer.

Immediately after I had graduated from college, I had been fortunate enough to quickly land a working contract with a small firm. I was very enthusiastic being straight from college with all the big dreams and desires for conquering the world. My dreams had however been slowly dimmed and my enthusiasm and ambitions were slowly discouraged by the sluggish and uneventful life I experienced at the firm. I do not blame the company since it was quite new and the managers were not really marketers but bankers who had decided marketing and media was a good venture.

My creative mind could simply not stand being so stagnated by the lack of challenges in my work. Clients were limited and scattered. The few who came to the firm had small jobs that were not challenging for me. To top it all, I was working with two introverts who were more like computer scientist than creative designers. The only time that I found some relief was during the lunch break when I went to a nearby food court and had some excellently cooked rice.

When an opportunity presented itself at my current company, I quickly applied for it and after an interview where I impressed, I was unanimously picked. I quit my former employment without looking back. I have been in this company for seven years and I am not thinking of ever moving away.

The work here is quite challenging and I always have something to provoke my creative mind. I love this. It kind of keeps my mental adrenaline pumping and the hours fly buy when I am working. From the moment I get into the office, I do not walk out until in the evening when I am going home. Not that we are restricted, but I simply don’t want to. My feelings are shared by my workmates.

In our creative department, we are a group of five guys. Due to some magic, we all cope very well together. The office is never boring. There is always friendly talk and we are always making fun as we work.

We do not need to go out for lunch or tea breaks. We have a coffee machine in the office and a small kitchen that is always stocked with snacks and other foods. We even have some blenders to make smoothies and other appliances for making quick meals.

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Return To Roots: My Favorite Paleo Recipes

September 4th, 2013 | by | lifestyle


In my attempts to return to our hunter gatherer roots, I’ve been a devoted follower of the paleo diet over recent years.

The logic behind it makes perfect sense to me – take what our ancestors ate over millions of years of evolution, and ignore the products of our agrarian societies that have only existed for less than 10,000 years.

Here are some of my favorite paleo recipes:

For those that aren’t so big on going full on paleo, my wife has been sticking to the gluten free diet, and I find there’s a lot of cross-over with gluten free eating and paleo. If you’re on a strict paleo diet like myself you might not want to try these, but they are nonetheless delicious.

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3 Tips to Get Those Creative Juices Flowing

June 24th, 2013 | by | creativity


Stuck for ideas? It happens to us all, is it writing songs, books or just simply trying to find something to do. We all have those times when we get a ‘block’ and just can’t get started or finish what we have already started.

I have 3 great tips to help you get your creative juices flowing:

1. You don’t have to be completely original!
I know it sounds weird, but actually, most great artists in any field steal (borrow?) ideas from others all the time. They might call it a ‘clever reference’ in a book but actually they just stole a line from a film or a name for their character.

Steve Jobs said “Creativity is just connecting things“. When you ask creative people how they did something, they feel a little guilty because they didn’t really do it, they just saw something. It seemed obvious to them after a while. That’s because they were able to connect experiences they’ve had and synthesize new things’. As his technological holiness said, it’s about the way you use these ideas not where they came from. I especially like how he describes the way an idea becomes obvious to us even though it seems genius to others as we have connected two ideas.

2. Take a break from what you are doing, and don’t try to think as it is impossible.
True inspiration happens when you let your mind wander; it’s the subconscious that comes up with great ideas. I promise that if you do something else then eventually you will be struck by an idea and be motivated to finish/start what you were stuck with. This quote from Ray Bradbury sums it up: ‘Don’t think. Thinking is the enemy of creativity. It’s self-conscious, and anything self-conscious is lousy. You can’t try to do things. You simply must do things.’

3. When you are unsure whether or not something is going to work, just do it.
How bad can it be and you can always try that bit again. I’m sure that when top music artists like Eminem are composing, they don’t always get it right first time. It takes mistakes and I was inspired by the way Scott Adams put it: ‘Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep.’

When I’m stuck for ideasm sometimes I also like to read creativity quotes (here are some I really like). They seem to sum up what I need to do in a really succinct way.

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Creative DIY Beauty Ideas

June 23rd, 2013 | by | random musings


Have you been wanting to achieve a look that is all your own? It can be hard finding the perfect shade of lipstick at the beauty store, or that unique temporary tattoo for that festival.

diy-beautySometimes, you can’t actually find the kind of beauty products that you want in stores, and that’s when you may just have to take matters into your own hands. Here are some creative DIY beauty ideas that will have heads turning in no time.

One of the first things that the average cosmetologist will learn while studying in beauty school is how to create their own lipstick shades. For this, all you need is some chapstick and some blush or eyeshadow that you want to have as your lipstick shade. (Note: You can mix eyeshadows and blushes in order to get that perfect shade.) Take a small slice of chapstick, and crush up the eyeshadow that you want to use as pigmentation. Mix the chapstick and eyeshadow together until the mixture has a nice, even color. You can store this DIY lipstick in a small tub container for future use, too.

Another common beauty school tip that people who aren’t licensed hairstylists often don’t know is that you can mix hair dyes together in order to get a shade that is 100% unique to you! This often works best with alternative color hair dyes, such as the ones that you would find with Manic Panic. This is because the colors that you would find with alternative hair dyes are brighter and more noticeable, and the effect of mixing two or three of these colors tends to be much more extreme. Still, it can be done with almost any hair dye.

Yet another favorite DIY beauty tip that a good stylist will be able to tell you is that you can create your own spa products using common kitchen ingredients. For example, mashing up a kiwi fruit and using it as a facial cleanser is a quick way to exfoliate dry skin. A masque made out of raw honey can help you moisturize dry spots. Even using a paste of nutmeg and honey can improve your skin tone and even fade acne scars. If you keep looking up new ways to get your DIY beauty fix, chances are that you will be able to get a lot of benefit from your cosmetics.

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Choosing A Name For Your Kid

January 7th, 2013 | by | random musings


Why is it that society insists on limiting name selection to a certain selection of a few hundred common names?  Why are Mikes, Johns, Lisas, and Jennifers so common?  Are people simply afraid to stand out from the pack, or are these names somehow intrinsically more appealing?

More interestingly, what is it about celebrities that makes them name their babies “Apple” or “Shiloh”?  And those aren’t even especially weird on the spectrum of truly weird names.  What about Moxie Crimefighter or Pilot Inspektor?  Is it because celebrities are highly driven people who want to stand out from the pack?  Or is it simply a matter of keeping up with the Joneses, in the quest to come up with a truly unique name?  Is it following trendsetting celebrities who started picking outrageous names?  What drives celebrities to seek out names that cause most of us to laugh or even shudder?

If you have any thoughts on this, I’d love to hear about it.


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