7 Pitfalls To Avoid When Rightsizing Your Home

SMART Living 365.comA friend of mine is currently in the midst of selling her long time family home and moving. Yet while I believe she “gets” the many benefits of rightsizing, I can tell after talking with her that several issues keep popping up that make her hesitant. That’s completely normal because in many ways, rightsizing is contrary to what most of us have been taught. The good news is that once you know what to keep in mind, rightsizing not only becomes the easiest choice, it is also the one that leads to the greatest benefits. Continue reading


Is Life Supposed to Be Fair?

SMART Living 365.comDo you feel life is fair? How we answer that question says more about us personally than we usually realize. Several weeks ago when I was researching the qualities of good relationships, I discovered a line of thinking that suggests that unless our relationships feel fair, they are headed for trouble. And if that’s true, does any time we feel that we’ve been treated unfairly ultimately mean we are headed down a  troublesome path? Chances are, yes. Continue reading


17 Ways To Deal With The Blahs

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Kloe with the blahs…

My dog Kloe is normally one of the happiest and perkiest dogs alive. Most of the time if just mention the “w” word (as in walk) she starts spinning and doing her happy dance. I’m sort of the same way. Most days I wake up and am convinced that something wonderful is about to happen and I am incredibly fortunate just to be alive. But to be honest, there are days for both Kloe and I when one or the other of us wakes in a funk. We aren’t feeling necessarily bad, just blah. What I’ve gradually learned is that the blahs aren’t usually something to fear, fix or fight. Instead, the SMART thing to do is remember we always have more options than we know and sometimes relaxing into the moment is the best antidote. Continue reading


How Is Your Hearing? 5 Reasons It Matters!

SMART Living 365.comDuring the last several years I knew that my hearing wasn’t as good as it used to be. But like millions of other baby boomers I told myself I was far too young to worry about it. But because I prefer preventative medicine to reactionary medicine, I decided to get a hearing test just to check things out. Even then I was somewhat shocked and dismayed to learn just how bad my hearing really was. After digging around on the Internet I was equally shocked to find out how common impaired hearing is for millions of Americans. Even more important is why the denial of it can become such a huge problem if left untreated.  Continue reading


Is Your Bucket Full & Fully Charged?

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Several years ago I read the book How Full Is Your Bucket? by author Tom Rath. Although the message was simple, I clearly remember its advice for creating a happy and fulfilled life. So when I was offered a review copy of Rath’s newest book Are You Fully Charged? I jumped at the chance. After all, who couldn’t benefit from a book with a subtitle like “The three keys to energizing your work and life”?   And if you’re anything like me, it doesn’t matter how many times I am reminded of positive and life affirming messages, I’m always open to hearing them again in a new way and different way. Continue reading


7 Life Lessons From An Episode of Chopped!

Chopped--food Network My husband Thom and I have watched Chopped for several years now. Even though we are not big fans of reality TV, there is something about the mix of tasty food, cooking, creativity, and drama that caught our attention. If you haven’t seen it, Chopped is a weekly program on the Food Network that showcases four different chefs each week as they compete to create the most artistic and flavorful dishes in a set amount of time. After watching dozens of episodes, it occurred to me that many of the things we witness week after week is similar to what we all face on a regular basis. That’s when I came up with seven life lessons contained in every episode of Chopped. Continue reading


RightSizing — Choosing Semi-Retirement Instead of Retired

“If you love what you do you’ll never work a day in your life.” ~Confucius


SMART Living 365.com         A good friend of mine plans to retire in the next couple of months. She’s earned it. After working at a challenging job for over 25 years, she’s more than ready to move on to something new. But underlying that excitement I detected a bit of worry about the uncertainty before her. That mixed message of elation and concern got me thinking about how Thom and I are approaching our future. What I realized was that in our quest to rightsize our lives, Thom and I have gradually slipped into what we are calling semi-retirement in a natural and stress-free way. While so many people our age are asking an all-or-nothing question about retirement, rightsizing right now might be the best solution of all. Continue reading


Tai Chi – The Path To A Moving Meditation On Life

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Tai chi in the park

Thom and I toyed with meditation on and off for several decades until we finally committed to a daily practice a little over four years ago.  Then a couple of months ago Thom suggested we take a tai chi class together, and I was pleasantly surprised to discover that tai chi is considered to be a “moving meditation.”   In many ways, the experience of tai chi manages to broaden, deepen and enhance what we are already doing. But even more surprising, is how the practice of tai chi can help any of us create a very SMART, happy and harmonious way of life—365. Continue reading


Is Gardening A Simple Cure For What Ails You?

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Thom with our raised bed and one of our tower gardens.

I keenly remember my mom working a garden in several of the homes she lived in later in her life.   One was little more than rock and gravel patch of dirt, yet she managed to harvest a few tomatoes and zucchini in spite of the inhospitable ground. And while I always enjoyed the taste if she had any extras, my life was far too important and fast paced to even imagine having the time or interest. Now here I am so many years later, spending time nearly every day nurturing tiny green plants in my care. Though it’s taken a while, I’ve gradually come to realize that many of the hidden benefits my mother harvested from her garden went far beyond the obvious. In fact, after reading up on the benefits of gardening I’ve come to realize that this simple action might be a cure for what ails many people, as well as the planet herself. Continue reading


7 Signs of Real Abundance

SMART Living 365.comMy husband Thom and I recently spent some time talking with a young couple we know about the direction of their life. With one small child and hope for one more, they are considering selling their home and moving to a larger one to give them all more space in a slightly more prestigious neighborhood. Of course that would mean larger mortgage payments, higher utility costs, more stuff, and a longer commute. Still, they seemed convinced it would all be worth it. After all, isn’t that the American Dream—more, bigger, better? Thom and I kept our mouths shut because they appeared to want encouragement more than advice. Yet, because I wish someone had tried to explain to a younger me that the dream they sought was not really a bigger house or more stuff, I thought I’d share what the joy of real abundance has come to mean to me after all these years. Continue reading