Your First Time Here?

Welcome to My Pleasant Places! Not sure where to get started? You might want to visit the About page to learn the premise of the blog and a little about the author. After that, you might enjoy the Start Here page to check out some of the most popular posts and get a feel for what is written about and valued at MPP. Finally, if you’re looking for help and encouragement in changing some aspect of your life, you’ll definitely want to read the posts on the 30-Day Challenge page.

If you like what you see, subscribe to receive new posts in your email inbox and click the Facebook “like” button to read the MPP daily tips for personal development on Facebook (see sidebar to the right).

Again, welcome to My Pleasant Places. I’m glad you’re here! :)

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Fun Friday: Babies and Animals

I post a disproportionate number of animal and/or children videos on my Facebook page. Today is Fun Friday, and I must share one of my “finds” from this week. The child reminds me of myself when getting a comforting neck massage. I always want to shout, “Don’t quit!” when the massage is over. But I suck it up and feign satisfaction. Not this child! He insists on continued gratification! Watch and enjoy the absolute sweetness.

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My New “Secret to Success” in Healthy Eating

Early this year, I wrote about my desire to upgrade my eating habits (See Strategies for Making and Achieving Your Goals This Year). I was on a mission to lower my cholesterol without medications; I was not successful (my doctor says my cholesterol levels are a genetic issue rather than a food issue).

Though I still had plenty of good reasons to want to improve my food choices, I admit that I lost a little of my drive when I was unsuccessful in lowering my cholesterol. Over the next few months, “good eating” see-sawed back and forth with “bad eating.”

One of the issues I deal with in eating healthily is that it requires time in the kitchen–also known as “cooking.” I don’t really mind cooking if I have nothing else to do (that statement is intended to be comical), but usually, it feels like an interruption to a productive day. Of course, when I had children at home, cooking wasn’t optional. But nowadays, with just Steve and I in the house, it’s so much easier to snack on junk food or go out to eat—or both!

And then, recently, something serendipitous happened. Continue reading

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Why Writing Is A Habit Worth Developing

I recently read an article about a guy who had built a 373-day chain of writing—and counting (I’m including the link to that article at the end of this post). I was impressed! My immediate response was,  “I want to do that, too.” And then I asked myself… “Why?”

Why do I want to write daily? Why is that important to me? Is it just another ‘challenge’ to master? Do I have a goal-setting fetish? Life is too short to set petty little goals that don’t really matter. There must be purpose behind them.

I reflected on this question for a few days and concluded Continue reading

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Fun Friday: Laugh With Me!

LaughterOn Fridays, I like to share something that will bring a smile to your face, soften any rough edges and/or make you laugh out loud. Today I’m going for the third option: laugh out loud.

This video is a little longer than I usually share here on my blog, but hey, if it makes you laugh out loud, then it’s worth a little of your time, right? So get yourself a cup of coffee (or tea or whatever you like to drink when you’re going to have a laugh), and settle in for about 12 minutes and enjoy this video by Shawn Achor via Ted Talks. (And by the way, not only is it funny, but it’s informational and inspirational, too.)

Photo compliments of Jeff Hall via Flickr.
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Experiences Versus “Stuff”

Two of my granddaughters recently celebrated birthdays during the same week (ages 11 and 12), and rather than buying them a gift that they would forget about in short order, I chose to buy an experience to share with them.

I paid for the three of us a spot in a Painting With A Twist class. I had never even heard of “Painting With a Twist” before last year, but as it was explained to me, it is a single painting class with other participants in which everyone in the class paints the same picture under the tutelage of a teacher who “shows and tells” (that is, the teacher paints the picture at the same time as the students and explains what to do through the process).

I have never painted a picture in my life, and in fact, I have always declared that there isn’t an artistic bone in my body (and that’s a quote). However, I can also say Continue reading

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A Daily Constitutional

Have you ever heard the term, “daily constitutional”? I only hear it in old movies or television shows, and unexplainably, it always brings a smile to my face. Not a smile as in, “That makes me happy,” but a smile as in, “That’s weird.” I recently pinpointed my unexplainable amusement. For some unknown reason, I had associated the term with “bathroom time.” That’s all the explanation I’m going to give. You can let your imagination do the rest.

I came across the phrase again when recently Continue reading

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Another Way to “Document Your Journey”

My sister recently posted her “personal manifesto” on her Facebook page. It included all kinds of one-liners like “Forgive,” “Read lots,” “Get outside,” etc., etc., etc. I liked it so much that I wanted to copy it.

Unfortunately, she couldn’t remember where she got the template (I didn’t only like what it said, I liked how it looked), so I did a little searching around on the web, Continue reading

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