Bits of Life

At church this morning the sermon addressed typical reactions of folks at Christmas.

Stress and anxiety.  I sat there thinking that the root cause of these two problems is expectation.  Expectation is a dreaded emotional disease that creates upheaval in families, friends, work, leisure or any part of our life.  It leads to pain in our own life when we expect people to live up to our expectations for them.

And the really sad part is, it’s self-imposed.  I look around at the pressures people put on themselves to make Christmas so special. But special for whom   All traditions must be strictly adhered to.  Even if we don’t know why we do them.  They just must be done.  Trees, lights – indoor and outdoor, cookies, ornaments, parties, expectation upon expectation.

I watched “Kranks’ Christmas”, a movie based on John Grisham’s book “Skipping Christmas”.  The couple decided to skip Christmas and go on a cruise.  They found it difficult to forgo past traditions and then the neighborhood and work labeled them Scrooge and they became pariahs of the first order.  And why – because they weren’t living up to the expectations of everyone around them.

Long ago, I decided that it wasn’t worth going crazy doing all the Christmasey “things”.  I began dropping them one by one.  First no cookie baking.  AH!!!   Then not worrying about the time my Christmas cards or letters got to people.  Then not sending any – thanks to the computer I can send a lovely Christmas letter which I know some people hate, but I also hate getting a Christmas card from someone I haven’t seen in 10 years and all that’s in the card is “Merry Christmas ___signature_____”.  I already knew their name, I want to hear about them.  See an expectation and it frustrates me.

Next came “the tree”.  I live alone and when grandkids visited, it was fun watching them look at the tree.  One year I saved ornaments for them to put on, but they weren’t interested.  Then I moved. Now I go to their houses to admire their trees.  So, little by little I reduced another stressor – trimming the tree and the house.  I really, really hate putting all of it away.  Displaying cute Santa’s, angels, snowmen, candles, etc. all around the house means I have to put other things away and then when it’s time, do the reverse.  No more.

Now I quietly, watch old movies, make presents. Visit museums and places that have lovely displays.  I’m happier and stress-free.  I know there are people who love this time of year because of all the traditions they want to do.  I guess if it doesn’t bring you peace and joy, reduce it and then maybe eliminate it. Find the things you like the most, keep them and free yourself of what drags you down.  After all they are just things.  Don’t make yourself and others miserable living up to unrealistic expectations.

 

 

 

It’s 17:27 and I am ready for bed.  Seems it has been dark for hours.  I’ll be celebrating soon. Spent the last few days crocheting hats for Christmas gifts.  Working on a monogrammed scarf for a niece.  Having trouble feeling the needle so it’s not much fun.  Hope I don’t have to give it up entirely.

Then when I crochet my fingers get all bunched up and I have trouble straightening them.  I suppose I could find new hobbies if I have to give up those two.

Watched a fascinating movie/documentary – The Barkley Marathons    It’s an insane 100-mile race through the Tennessee woods.  Consists of 5 loops of 20 miles each and it is to be completed in 60 hours.  Amazing endurance.  Worth watching.

It’s really terrible when you’ve sworn off cookies, cakes, etc and then have a terrible craving for something sweet!!!!  I don’t even have regular tea that I sweeten. Only have herb tea and I could add some sugar or honey.  An apple will do I think!

Occam’s razor is a principle first developed by the Franciscan friar and philosopher, William of Ockham.

Whilst it is likely that the philosophy was posthumously attributed to him, as it was based upon common medieval philosophy, it seems to be a result of his minimalist lifestyle.

Occam’s razor is more commonly described as ‘the simplest answer is most often correct,’ although this is an oversimplification. The ‘correct’ interpretation is that entities should not be multiplied needlessly.

Researchers should avoid ‘stacking’ information to prove a theory if a simpler explanation fits the observations. Occam’s razor is the process of paring down information to make finding the truth easier.

In science, it is getting rid of all the assumptions that make no difference to the predictions of the hypothesis. If you have a few hypotheses that could explain an observation, it is usually best to start with the simplest one.

Around 10 on a cloudy, icky day, a young man on OSU campus drove into a group of students on a sidewalk who happened to be outside because of a fire alarm.  After hitting several he jumped out of his car swinging a butcher knife.  Within minutes the young man was dead and 11 people were in the hospital.

 

Annalise and I entered the Franklin Park Gingerbread competition.  We had a great time putting our Gummy Bears to the Columbus Zoo together, but I learned it is not a picnic to make gingerbread houses.  Next year we’ll do it differently.  Like cutting out the pieces and then cooking them  It is very hard to cut out cooked gingerbread – it falls apart!!  We had a roller coaster, polar bear exhibit, horse and foal in a corral with Raisinete’s for horsey excrement, and a pit of vipers. As we went along I realized we weren’t using very much gingerbread, it was mostly a candy display.  Can’t wait till next year.

 

Looks like a day of reading or watching movies for me.  For the last couple weeks, I’ve experienced loss of  feeling, aching and  increasing pain at night in both hands.  Should contact my doctor on Monday.

A heating pad helps but doing nothing is the best right now.  Annoying.  I have things I’d rather do with my hands than hold them muff like under heat.

Carbon dating   It seems many people don’t believe carbon dating because it makes the world centuries older than they want it to be.

Scientific American article   – changes due to core sampling sediment layers in Japanese lake.

Need to go to the bank to dispute two drafts using my card number.  Annoying.

Rita’s Bits of Life

Monthly blogs

Categories

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 15 other followers