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Welcome to Mirth and Motivation!

Before you leave a comment, STOP, consider this: Our comments are part of our digital footprint on the internet. They tell the world how we think and respond to information. I know YOU took time out of your busy schedule and landed here. I’m rooting for you to say something inspiring that will help others who read my posts. THANK YOU! ❤

Hello world!


Welcome to Mirth and Motivation! This is a Lifestyle/Motivational blog offering an eclectic mix of mirthful and motivational pieces: Life Tips / Advice, Affirmations/Wellness, Women’s Lives, Food, Travel, Interviews, Inspirational posts, Reviews, Peace, AND Social Media ruminations on people, places, and events that shape our lives. I invite you to stay awhile, read some posts, and share your thoughts with this growing online blog community.

One of the fundamental rules of blogging is to make connections with others by adding value through our message/content, comments, and social interactions. I hope you’ll share your comments and expertise with me. If you’d like to write a Guest post, offer a sponsorship or PR opportunity, send me a message with your inquiry by email at: contact(@)mirthandmotivation(.)com or contact(@)positivekismet(.)com Thank you!

Something I know for sure is that we all want to be heard, appreciated and respected; I know that sincere, positive, and empowering messages are far more appealing than incendiary angling for blog attention. If your blogosphere surfing brings you here, relax, kick back, and share a positive tidbit on your worldview.

So, How should we handle the global economic shift? How do we stay mirthful and motivated?
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Motivation Mondays: Honoring Presidents’ Day


“To leave the world a better place … to know even one life has breathed easier because you lived. This is to have succeeded.” Ralph Waldo Emerson

Motivation Mondays: Honoring Presidents' Day

Motivation Mondays: Honoring Presidents’ Day

America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves. Abraham Lincoln
If the great American people will only keep their temper, on both sides of the line, the troubles will come to an end, and the question which now distracts the country will be settled just as surely as all other difficulties of like character which have originated in this government have been adjusted. Abraham Lincoln

How are you honoring Presidents’ Day? What do you know about Presidents’ Day Origins?:   Every year, on this special day, we gather to honor the memory and accomplishments of two of this nation’s greatest presidents; George Washington and Abraham Lincoln. These men were motivated to serve their nation because they believed in its greatness, our fundamental freedoms, and wanted to pass that on for posterity. Lincoln lost his life in service to this nation and so we must approach this day with reverence. What triggered the holiday? This federal holiday which celebrates and honors two of America’s greatest Presidents came into being in 1968, when the 90th Congress voted to shift three federal holidays, including George Washington’s Birthday to the 3rd Monday of February. Initially, there was some resistance by those who felt that one day shouldn’t be designated in exchange for merging the birthdays of two great leaders. They objected to the idea as they preferred separate days of celebrating our founding fathers. After much debate and delay, the designated day became law in 1971. Another important aspect of this day is that some states celebrate it as George Washington’s birthday and may/may not include Abraham Lincoln’s birthday.

Even though we call it Presidents’ Day, each state reserves the right to include or exclude all 45 Presidents  in their celebrations. Some feel that because its genesis started with the celebration of George and Abraham’s birthdays, it would be best to maintain that distinction and not include all of our 45 presidents. Another point of confusion is the way we write it. Some refer to it as President’s Day though the more appropriate term is Presidents’ Day in honor of two not one President; both have birthdays in the same month. That said, one fallout of this holiday is the huge commercialization that occurs and the endless invitations to shop till we drop with nary an educational insight on the presidency. I have a few questions for you: What do you know about the American presidency? Who was the oldest President in office? Who was the youngest? Which Presidents served more than one term in office?  Who served the longest in office? Who served the shortest term? Share your answers in the comments section.

Stories: There are many fables/stories attributed over the years to specific presidents. Two that stand out are “The 20 Year Jinx” & “The Fable of George Washington and the Cherry Tree.” The 20 year jinx, also known as  The Curse of Tippecanoe, was purported to be a curse placed on American presidents that every 20 years a president in office would die. While it seems that many did, the curse was believed to be broken when Ronald Reagan survived an assassination attempt while in office.


The details for Motivation Mondays are below. Join in! The themes for January and February 2017 are:

01/01   –  01 New Year’s Day, Hanukkah ends, 06 Epiphany, 06 Three Kings
01/08   –  08 Golden Globes Award,  11 Human Trafficking Awareness Day, 12 Full Moon
01/16   –  16  Martin Luther King Day, 18 Winnie the Pooh Day, 20 Inauguration Day
01/23 –  27 Commemoration Victims of the Holocaust, 28 Chinese New Year
01/29  –  29 Inspire your heart with art

0/6 – Lame Duck Day, 12, Lincoln’s Birthday
0/13 – 14, Valentine’s Day, 15, Constitution Day,
0/20 – 20, Presidents’ Day, Washington’s Birthday, 24, Carnival/Flag Day, 26, New Moon
0/27 – 27, Clean Monday, 28, Mardi Gras, Fat Tuesday,

Are You Looking for Ways to Stay Creative in 2017?

– Join the Daily Post Post-a-day or Post-a-week Challenge.


— Join the BlogHer Writing Lab

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Heart Matters: 7 Heart Healthy Tips


“Heart disease continues to be the number one killer; cancer, the number 2 killer, not far behind. The tragic aspect of these deadly diseases is that they could all be cured, I do believe, if we had sufficient funding.” Arlen Specter

Heart Matters: Heart Healthy Tips Save Lives

Heart Matters: Heart Healthy Tips Save Lives

General Statistics
Heart disease is the No. 1 killer of women, and is more deadly than all forms of cancer combined.
Heart disease causes 1 in 3 women’s deaths each year, killing approximately one woman every minute.
An estimated 43 million women in the U.S. are affected by heart disease.
90% of women have one or more risk factors for developing heart disease.
Since 1984, more women than men have died each year from heart disease.
The symptoms of heart disease can be different in women and men, and are often misunderstood.
While 1 in 31 American women dies from breast cancer each year, 1 in 3 dies of heart disease.
Only 1 in 5 American women believe that heart disease is her greatest health threat.
Women comprise only 24 percent of participants in all heart-related studies.


What do you know about Heart Disease? February is American Heart Month  and it behooves us all to join forces with Go Red for Women, the American Heart Association (AHA), Centers For Disease Control and Prevention (CDC),  National Institutes for Health (NIH),  National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI), the Office on Women’s Health (OWH), and the  U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), to raise awareness about heart disease; it is an insidious disease that claims the lives of thousands of men and women every year. Did you know that 735,000 Americans suffer a heart attack every year and that 610,000 will die from heart disease? Did you know that a heart attack can show up differently for a man versus a woman? When we take time to educate ourselves, we put our family and friends in a greater position to survive a possible heart attack. Why?  Because 1 in 4 people in America will have a heart attack this year and you don’t want to become a statistic.

According to the CDC, in the US alone, Coronary artery disease (CAD) is the most common type of heart disease  and, unfortunately,  the first sign some of us get is a heart attack.  Yet, there are steps we can take to prevent or manage heart issues and tips we can use to help us live longer lives. Over the years, there has been tremendous research and education to help us find ways to create and maintain a heart healthy lifestyle. However, no amount of research can overcome poor lifestyle habits. If we continue to run ourselves ragged, eat poorly, skip exercise and remain in stressful conditions, we open a pathway for a heart attack. We must do the work to improve our health and it begins with us. Yes US!  We must make an extra effort to change our bad eating habits and sedentary lifestyle as a fundamental way to increase our chances of surviving a stroke or heart attack.


“Too many U.S. adults have a heart age years older than their real age, increasing their risk of heart disease and stroke. Everybody deserves to be young – or at least not old – at heart.”  Tom Frieden

Heart Matters: Heart Healthy Tips Save Lives

Heart Matters: Heart Healthy Tips Save Lives

An estimated 43 million women in the U.S. are affected by heart disease. Ninety percent of women have one or more risk factors for developing heart disease. Since 1984, more women than men have died each year from heart disease. The symptoms of heart disease can be different in women and men, and are often misunderstood. While 1 in 31 American women dies from breast cancer each year, 1 in 3 dies of heart disease. Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death for African American women. Of African American women ages 20 and older, 46.9 percent have cardiovascular disease. Hispanic women are likely to develop heart disease 10 years earlier than Caucasian women.” NHLBI/NIH

What can we do about it? Here are a number of tips to help us along the path to a healthier heart.
1. EXERCISE –   Move your body and shift from a sedentary lifestyle to one that includes daily activity. Even a walk around the block is a start and we can grow from there to doing more cardio friendly exercises by hiring a trainer, joining a gym, taking up yoga or even going dancing with friends.  According to the American Heart Association, each hour spent on regular exercise gives us two hours back on our life expectancy. So movement is key to increasing our lifespan and getting us back in shape.

2. HEALTHY FOODS – We can’t say it enough that a low fat diet helps lower our total and bad cholesterol levels. When we include servings of fresh fruits, vegetables and healthy proteins to our diet, we increase our energy levels and provide our bodies with the nutrients needed for health, recovery and longevity. Equally important is hydration and food portion control. We can eat healthy foods by shopping with a list, creating menus in advance and paying attention to how much we eat. I believe in moderation with everything so there is no need to feel deprived… moderate your consumption.

3. REDUCE STRESS – Stress is a contributor to heart disease and so we need as many health tips as we can handle to help us reduce it. The most important gift we can give ourselves is to take that first step to eliminate or reduce stressful situations in our lives. Family, work, financial, and health issues can push our stress levels through the roof so, it is important to pay attention to those triggers and contain them. Managing stress is important for our mental health—and heart health, too! Take 10 minutes to de-stress by meditating, practicing deep yogic breathing, taking a stroll, a soothing bath or simple stretching exercises. Encourage family members by reminding them to set aside time to de-stress.

4. KNOW YOUR NUMBERSWhen was the last time you had a check up? Schedule one today. It is imperative that we take the time to make sure that we have our regular, annual check ups/Women’s Visits, and that we make sure that we are screened for blood pressure, cholesterol, Blood Sugar, BMI (Body Mass Index), and get an electrocardiogram (ECG). We must also take every chest pain and discomfort seriously and seek medical help immediately.

5. KNOW THE SIGNS –  While men and women might experience a heart attack differently, there are some common signs that we should all know to help us make an educated decision for ourselves and our loved ones. Here are some to note: Chest pain/discomfort, Pain or discomfort in the arms, back, neck, jaw, or upper stomach. Shortness of breath.  Nausea. Cold Sweats, Lightheadedness or disorientation.  If you feel strange sensations or discomfort, be proactive and seek medical help. It is always best to be safe than sorry. Listen to some CDC podcasts for more information.

6. GET EDUCATED AND TESTED – The more access we have to information on heart disease and the various treatments available on the marketplace, the better able we will be to make an informed decisions for ourselves and others.  Routine tests might be sufficient unless you have a family history or predisposition to heart disease then you can discuss that with your health provider.  Be a strong advocate for your own health and dont be afraid to ask lots of questions and, if necessary, seek a second opinion. It can help you save a life and that life might be your own. Take the CDC heart disease quiz and test your heart health knowledge!

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Photo Challenge: Against The Odds


“If something is important enough, even if the odds are against you, you should still do it.” Elon Musk

Photo Challenge: Against The Odds - A Horse on the Porch

Photo Challenge: Against The Odds – A Horse on the Porch

How often do you come across a full size, alabaster horse on a city home porch? As fate would have it, I was minding my own business, on an early morning jaunt to the gym, when a huge, white, structure caught the corner of my eye. I blinked and took another look and, sure enough, it was what I imagined I had seen. Someone had placed a full size, white alabaster horse on a relatively small porch, attached to a building, on the corner of a quiet street. It was magnificent and I was flabbergasted. I stopped in my tracks and took it all in.

Clearly, someone had gone against the grain, and against all odds, to create and place that horse on that porch. All sorts of heroic stories and fantastic fairy tales danced before my eyes. Was it made in the image of a beloved family pet? Was it placed there for shock value or to entertain? Was it in transit to some magical place where unicorns and homeless horses reside? I pondered the powerful sculpture before me; it looked like it was eager to jump right off that porch and … head for the woods. I laughed!

Against all odds by afireinthisheart via
Against all odds I will survive
despite whatever you’re thinking
For I’ve been through this before
even at times when I’ve been sinking

Because I’ve learned many lessons
Earned the hard way and thus I’ll say
Before my peers I’m standing tall
because I’m more than ready to play

Against all odds and look at me now
I’ve been beaten yet finds that hope
A hope that when my days are done
I’ve found many ways learning to cope. Continued below


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