Putting On…

My Big Girl Pants.

I thought it was time I did that.

Not much in my life has changed since I wrote about how I’ve been feeling lately, in my “Phony Baloney” post. Except for one thing.

My mindset.

Oh, and the fact that I decided that my Phony Baloney “fake” NFT idea was a silly proposal, so I canned the idea. That’s not to say that I’m not going to look into creating some real NFT’s down the road, but that’s another thought for another day.

I decided it was time to stop wallowing in my own misery (or boredom), and do something about it. It’s time to start focusing on the good things in life again. I started reading a Bible plan a while back and it was talking about not giving the enemy a seat at your table. It’s weird how our own thoughts really ARE the enemy. At times.

My son’s friend recommended a book to him recently called The Mountain Is You: Transforming Self-Sabotage Into Self-Mastery, by Brianna Wiest. I haven’t read it, or even looked into it yet, but the title “The Mountain is You” really hit home. There’s a lot of finger pointing going on these days, and I think I got caught in the middle of it, blaming my negative feelings on other people, politics, viruses, money, etc., but the fact of the matter is… the mountain is ME.

I thought I would put on my big girl pants tonight and do a little artwork to start retraining my brain. Life and time are so precious, and I hate to waste another minute feeling humdrum.

I gave the girl in my piece some big girl pants of her own, and a little montage look to represent the ups and downs, and the complexities of life. It reminded me of one of those weird circus mirrors that make you look distorted. That’s kind of how I see our minds working… distorting our thoughts that will lead us to great things, or to terrible things… depending on how we allow it to reflect. I choose what I see, so I choose to see the good.

Speaking of that, my 6 year sobriety birthday came and went in March without my mentioning it, so I thought I would use that as my first statement of gratitude this evening. 6 years alcohol free. Yahoo! My oldest son had a birthday recently as well, and he just turned 39. So, I’m not just sober now… I am getting OLD. Ha! Age is just a number.

Anyway, I had a good time doing my project this evening and I’m happy to report that I feel better already. It’s all about perspective I guess.

That’s about all for now.

Peace & love, and remember… don’t give the enemy a seat at your table!

There is nothing either good or bad but thinking makes it so.

William Shakespeare, Hamlet

Phony Baloney

The “Real” NFT
(Nonrefundable Fungible Token)

First of all, greetings everyone! I have been away for awhile and thought it was time to pop in and say hello and (hopefully) add some humor to your day.

To be honest and transparent here (no phony baloney), I have been a little off these days. Seriously, I think it’s something like the post-pandemic blues. I lost my passion and ambition for everything just about the time I posted here last time, which is why I’ve been offline. Nothing, and I mean NOTHING, was exciting me anymore.

So, I thought I’d try something new and start checking out the crypto scene. I actually started doing that long before this, but this time I decided to check out the many ways that you can earn crypto by playing games, watching ads, completing surveys and so on. On my first go round I spent quite a bit of time doing whatever I had to do and I was pretty pleased (NOT) to get my very first payout – a little Bitcoin to the tune of 32cents USD. Woo-Hoo!

It’s gotten better as my son is always on the lookout for the latest and greatest gimmick, so we’ve found some that pay a wee bit more. That being said, everyone is always telling me I should start creating NFT’s and to be honest I don’t have the energy to figure it out. I might “someday,” but for now I’m just not into it.

Anyway, I thought it would be fun to create my own phony baloney NFT’s just for giggles. They’re not the Non Fungible Tokens though, they are the Nonrefundable Fungible kind. Ha! So… allow me to introduce you to Phony Baloney – the baloney that thinks he’s a hot dog. This was just my starter piece so it’s raw (not cooked), but I wanted to make my first so I could see how it felt and it was actually great because it got me laughing. Laughter is such good medicine!

I don’t know if you’ve seen the Bored Ape series, I think everyone has by now, but that’s kind of where I got my inspiration. Each time I work on a new one (which I will never promise to do), I’ll perfect him just a little more. And every new Phony Baloney will be different – this week his theme is “The Boxer.” Let me know your thoughts! Is it worth continuing or should I just move on?

In Other News

To kind of reiterate where I was before the blues settled down on me, I had started working on my short story again and suddenly I couldn’t stand to think about it anymore. That’s when the ball got rolling. I quit my Screenwriting class because he wanted us to watch too many movies and pick out plot points (or beats, as he called them) and to be honest I really don’t love to watch movies that often. I started thinking… “now, why in the hell would I want to write a movie when I don’t even really WATCH them?!” That was the next thing that got me down.

Then there’s family problems and my mom’s back started acting up and… yada yada yada. OH, and I had NO desire to draw or take photos or alter images either. To top it off, the spring semester is ending in one week and all I’ve been able to think about is how badly I want a summer break because I am schoooooled out. It’s been a LONG journey (studying since 2017), and it’s time to switch gears and do something new for summer. My plan is to help my mom spruce up the house because cleanliness and reorganizing always make me feel refreshed – and it will make my mom feel good too!

Sorry for the long personal boring story here. I actually thought it would be good to vent about it because I have to wonder if other people are feeling the trickling effects of the pandemic. It’s so strange that I’m taking classes to be a counselor/therapist, and we never talk about COVID. It is my biggest guess that the ripple is just starting and there will be a lot of people finding it hard to go back to “normal” or to even figure out what “normal” is anymore – but so far it’s not something we discuss in a therapy class and I just find that a little odd.

But, that’s another story for another day. Right now I’m just happy to have my first fake “NFT” out, and I hope that Mr. Baloney the Boxer makes you smile.

That’s about all for now. I’m hoping to get out and about in the blog-a-verse and see what you all have been up to while I was away… so I’ll see you when I visit!

Peace & Love!

“No matter how you slice it, it’s still baloney.”

Author Unknown

Road to Happiness

The road to success [or a better life] is always under construction.

Lily Tomlin [and me]

As you probably know, I never tire of learning about the power of our minds. Sometimes I’ll read or hear something and it sends chills down my spine. Good chills. It’s like a feeling of excitement that what you just learned has helped you tap into something better, something life-changing, something miraculous.

So… this is going to be my first post for a year long series:

Miracles Every Day

I don’t know if I’ve ever shared this, but I read a book a while back called Switch on Your Brain: The Key to Peak Happiness, Thinking, and Health, by Dr. Caroline Leaf. She has interesting thoughts not only on how our brains work, but on how bits of biblical text actually correlate with the way that they work.

It is truly fascinating, but I have to confess that I never did the worksheets. I always do that. I’ll read a great self-help book where the back half of the book has all of the questions, planners, guides, exercises, etc., and I’ll stop right there. I just wanted to hear how the damn thing works, not actually DO the work. Ha!

The bottom line: It’s about how repeating positive thoughts can build new pathways in our brains, and how cutting out negative thoughts will begin to shut down the old pathways we’ve constructed over our lifetime—with negative or unhealthy thinking, false beliefs, etc.

Talk on how repetitive thoughts (or even activities) create pathways in our brain is not new, I just had a harder time grasping it—scientifically—until I read her book.

Here’s the deal though. As passionate as I am about “the mind,” I am a terrible student when it comes to physiology. Don’t ask me why, but I can’t seem to memorize the names of human body parts and their functions!

When I read things relating to neuroscience—about specific regions of the brain, for example, or neurons, neurotransmitters, receptors, and so on—my mind begins to fog up and I begin to look like a deer in the headlights. That being said, when I try to imagine how it all works I see something like this…

But… recently, I found the best analogy ever:

*Imagine you have crash landed in the jungle. There are thick branches and vines everywhere, as far as you can see. You are thirsty, and you hear running water in the distance, to the right of your mangled plane. You search for the easiest way to get there, but all you can see is this thick vegetation and it’s the same in every direction. You stay where you are because you are afraid. But your thirst finally overcomes your fear, and you strike out for the creek.

When you do this, you make a pathway. It is not much and it will not last, but it is there. By passing through the jungle once, you have made a pathway of least resistance. As you head back, you take that pathway again because it’s now the easiest way. As you go through this repeatedly, you make more of a pathway until in time you have a nice smooth trail. Now, every time you go to the creek you take the easiest way. That is how the brain works and that is how learning takes place.*

Now, this may not explain what is inside the brain, but as far as how repetitive thoughts, habits, and pathways work… I think it’s absolutely perfect. I love the visual!

I guess the point here is that human beings are amazing and complex beings, with minds that are capable of doing things that we haven’t even dreamed of yet.

That being said, the power of the human mind is a miracle. No doubt about it.

The featured image is a fun composite piece that I made for the post. The road to happiness, for sure. After a conversation I had earlier, I’m going to “try” to work on some tips for Photoshop, so my goal is to come back another day and use this piece to show how to make a simple composite piece. I’m no expert, but I think I have some tricks up my sleeve.

That’s about all for now. Thanks for reading!

Many complain of their looks, but none of their brains.


*Source: Robert R. Perkinson, Chemical Dependency Counseling