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Thankful words can be short, ... Thankful words can be short,
But may the hands of appreciation be far reaching.
There is nothing like words of appreciation!

One of the essentials of birthday or Christmas presents is that "THANK YOUs" are required by our daughter Kelly's daughters, even if it takes weeks of nagging.

Last week, we couldn't leave for our weekend on the Hood Canal until the Thank you were written for her 12th birthday presents.

Trust that this will become a habit as the girls become adults.

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NHK - Nippon Hoso Kyokai - ... NHK - Nippon Hoso Kyokai - Japan Broadcasting Corporation
Stories featuring families wanting their children to grow up
NHK is my go to station for news and background information. Last night I was watching an interview for the building of the Shibuya Plaza in Tokyo. Typical of the Japanese mental attitude for innovations, the interviewee says, “Any project takes at least 10 years of incubation.”

In all Japanese arts, one understands so called "apprenticeship" for at least 10 years before becoming the first level of being called master or "Ichi-dan" .

Malcolm Gladstone in OUTLIERS writes, "It takes 10,000 hours of repetition or practice to become professional." He highlights individuals like Bill Gates and Steve Jobs who put in their 10k hours before coming up with something to get paid.

My friend Michi is a concert pianist and the Suzuki Method started in her home in Japan. Dr. Suzuki starts children at age 3 so they can get in the 10 years before they get busy with high school activities.

It’s heartening to see a NHK program featuring young families who are moving back to where the previous generation deserted the countrysides for the cities. They are moving back to reestablish some of the arts of their ancestors with the old-fashioned hours of labor and lack of pay for their hours. The comment, “I am poorer, but happier.”

The narrator's young daughter has to walk 40 minutes to her school over the mountain of exquisitely kept green hillside farms. They are picking their snacks off the trees. They are providing an incubation with nature for their children.

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Last week I had a discussion with Cousin Gary at a family gathering. He shared about his excitement of THE POWER OF NOW and Eckhart Tolle who is presenting in Seattle this October. One of my favorite Tolle quotes is: “The only thing you ever have is now.”

Today, OUR NEW SHAKLEE DIRECTOR, ANDREW, sent an affirmation: “One day you’ll wake up and there won’t be any more time to do the things you’ve always wanted. DO IT NOW.”

Today, I chose to be more present in what I’m doing. This morning I started to unload the dishwater and noticed how I want to just get it done as fast as possible. Then I changed to appreciating the convenience and how I have a place in my kitchen for all the pieces to go. The dishes are items that have brought a lot of pleasure through the years and I was unloading the dishwasher full of dishes that had served my guests last night. Put a smile on my face!

I am not my thoughts. I am what I do with my thoughts. Some of what I choose to do can be great. Some of how I react is not so great. “Mindfulness” gives me time to choose what I want.

I choose not to listen to a lot of the news because the news is a business and needs to created reactions with negative and frightening stories.

I am looking at a napkin holder in my kitchen done in bronze: “DO IT NOW”.

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Last week a friend told me she recommended her niece not to go as a young single person to an event in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, because of the fear of white supremacy activity in Idaho.

My husband and I grew up in the Idaho community. We were often called "Jap". We saw signs regularly: "NO JAPS ALLOWED."

One day at the Sand Hollow, Idaho, one-room Community Church my dad and another white farmer had a disagreement. The argument continued as the congregation poured themselves out the front door onto the sand and dirt where all the cars were parked in that sun drenched desert environment. Although no blows were actually exchanged because my dad was carrying my baby sister, a ring of parishioners formed a circle around them as they argued with fists clenched. The almost fist fight was heated with words referring to "JAPs".

We changed churches!

On the other hand, my father was wise enough to invite these racist individuals to coffee and we had this farmer's daughters as baby-sitters.

Because of these experiences, I am not afraid to go to Coeur d'Alene as I have practice in finding the good in others no matter their rhetoric or outside manners. They are human and have grown up with limited defensive practice and they themselves are afraid.

There are various ways to practice the skill of being comfortable to talk and express ourselves with others. My first recommendation is always to invite someone to coffee one-on-one and ask them to talk about their own heritage.

Of course, we teach our children and practice avoiding dangerous situations like negative group dynamics.

Celeste Headlee knows the ingredients of a great conversation: Honesty, brevity, clarity and a healthy amount of listening. In her TED talk, she shares 10 useful rules for having better conversations. She also suggests not avoiding politics and religion at family dinners and other gatherings. "Go out, talk to people, listen to people," she says. "And, most importantly, be prepared to be amazed."

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JoAnne and I graduated together from the U of W Psychosocial Nursing program. She currently teaches Nursing Theory in North Carolina. As we connected a couple weeks ago, she commented about this latest book sitting on her sofa and looking at her. So I ordered it as my airplane reading even if it was new and only in hardback.

As Louise Aronson M.D. ages, she realizes most research is done on the young about adulthood and childhood. We know little about what are the different normals and what is right for Elderhood.

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“Your future li... “Your future life will be exactly what you decide to make it.”
-Dr. Shaklee
One of the first quotes, we put up on our fridge years ago, still stands out as a good beginning and overall goal for what I want for the rest of my life.

Getting ready for the day and reading on the bathroom mirror here at my daughter's place:
"My body is always working toward optimum health. My body wants to be whole and healthy. I cooperate and become healthy whole and complete."

Healthy means, physically, mentally, spiritually and emotionally!!!

What I love doing is helping myself by helping others stay on course and for sure, I will continue doing this.

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How Skills Provide A Strong Foundation For Flexibility

Skill building with music lesson... Skill building with music lessons, cultural arts and sports
provide the strongest root system
with confidence and flexibility
for facing life challenges!!
It had snowed that April Morning in 1968. Dr. Shinichi Suzuki was in Seattle for his first American tour since his method for teaching children, starting at age three, violin, piano & cello skills was brought to America from Japan.

Dr. Suzuki was staying close to our home on Seattle's Capital Hill so he was escorted through the brisk light snow as he walked to our house for lunch. It's embarrassing now, but I was young and naive and decided he would be missing Japanese food here in America so I invited him and made Rice and Tempura.

He was particularly attentive to three-year-old Lynette and six-month-old Kelly. He explained the reason he suggested starting lessons at age three was so the children can get in the 10 years it takes to build a skill before they reached their teen years and have distractions. Also mothers have to bring them to the lessons and are involved in the skill building.

The master was clear, the main purpose was to develop character and not professionals. Learning to play the violin is one of the most difficult endeavors. Accomplishing something hard helps us learn confidence being in front of people.

Fifty-one years later, Lynette, Kelly and their mother, Dee, are facing the storms in our life and have no problem bending so we don't break. There is little doubt skill building activities make a difference.

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Making strong choices and listening to your instinct

"Your future life will be exactl... "Your future life will be exactly what you choose to make it."
-Dr. Forrest Shaklee
When KK & Jodi first arrived in Seattle from Hawaii, I took them to have a treat at the Panama Hotel Tea & Coffee Shop on Main Street because part of our Goto heritage is featured there. The book now in half a dozen languages, HOTEL ON THE CORNER OF BITTER SWEET by Jamie Ford is about this hotel. Because of a water issues the front door was gated, but I saw Jan sitting out on the sidewalk outside her lower door having tea and enjoying the gorgeous Seattle Summer afternoon. I rolled down the car window and called out, “Jan, why are you closed?”

Jan calls back, “Hi Dee, I’m open, park over there and come on in.”

We spend the next two hours taking a tour of her hotel rooms, all decorated in beautiful vintage themes. And we hear the story of how she bought the hotel 37 years ago. Jan’s story starts on Seattle’s Beacon Hill where her father was an immigrant carpenter, taking the name Johnson on Ellis Island. Jan, as she tells the story, starting at three or four years old learning carpentry, electrical/plumbing skills from her Dad and often took the bus by herself to the library down town herself at age six or seven.

Jan had her own designer clothing business in Rome in her 20s. For some reason she came back to Seattle and rented an office in Seattle’s old Japan Town. Tak Hori who owned the Panama Hotel had been looking for 14 years to find the right buyer for his hotel. Jan tells KK, “I’m telling this story to you. This is for you young people. With no credit, no collateral, no experience Key Bank gave me the loan. You can do and get anything you really want.”

She interrupts her story and goes out to the sidewalk to send a homeless person, harassing an elderly neighbor walking her dog, on his way. Then she comes back and tells us some more stories about this historical site which she got registered on the list of historic places nationally.

Jan is in her 80s, has no elevator, uses all the old fashioned stairs, points out the beauty of the architecture - the lighting, the natural air conditioning, the 100 keys on her key chain as she still does most of the maintenance herself. She is looking for the right buyer. We joke, “It’s going to take you 14 years to find the right buyer too!”

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Gift of KK Energy

Appreciate being surrounded w... Appreciate being surrounded with positive energy
that I love sharing
to attract the things I want in my life.
This past week, I was blest with visitors, Jodi & KK, from Hilo, Hawaii. I love the confidence almost 17-yr-old KK shows as she attended Tennis Camp at the Sandpoint Tennis Center. There is no doubt about why she is third in her age group from Hawaii as she competes in national tennis tournaments.

"Make strong choices, go with your instinct." I just heard this quote and as I explain KK's demeanor, she totally goes with what she thinks is right and is clear about expressing herself. She says she has no intention of going on to professional tennis, but the skills she is acquiring will get a scholarship to college and connections to the Universal Minds of success.

The whole week, KK kept encountering "coincidences" like I've described in the previous blogs. On the 4th of July, we went to Daiso in Bellevue to shop. As we were in the checkout line, the person behind calls KK's name in recognition. The person was someone they knew from Maui on the Tennis circuit. Also, during the time KK was at the tennis camp the coach from Whitman College, John Hein, happened to be in Seattle and saw KK's name as one of the participants and called.

What a week of positive energy!

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In 1976, Sam and I went to learn how to buy fixer up houses and use them as our retirement income. Forty-Three years later, what is left after taxes is an important part of my retirement income.

The best part of the learning was on how to use our UNIVERSAL/SUPERCONSCIOUS MIND to get and accomplish the things in life that bring us fulfillment and happiness. I share this principle as often as I can as I do my nutritional and family counseling with the Shaklee opportunity.

One of the exercises we learned was of how successful people are able to open the gate (green arrow above) to the Superconscious or Universal Mind. We learned about Napoleon Hill in his book, THINK AND GROW RICH (not just money rich, but money is important too) interviewing people like President Hoover. Hoover went into a quiet room and practiced a form of meditation to open his gate to get answers to his issues and questions.

To open the green gate to the Superconscious mind, we can deliberately fill our SubConscious mind with positive thoughts. The easiest way to do this is to make a list of fun and happy experiences in our lives and read them at bedtime. Our Subconscious mind is a tape recorder and is filled with positive+ and negative- thoughts. It is suggested that successful people have more positive thoughts in their bank.

We further practiced:
1. Write: that means to literally write a question and phrase it in a positive way as to something I want to accomplish. For instance, "What is the best way to..."
2. Try: that means to brainstorm as many ways as I can think of to answer my question.
3. Ask: after the first two steps, I then turn it over to my Universal Mind and go to sleep.

I did this regularly as I built my Shaklee business and I would wake up with an idea and act on it.

Today, I continue to use this tool as I plan and continue the things that are important to me - "Bringing out the best in myself and others."

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