Tag Archives: Facebook

Skipping the Diet


For Christmas, my dad gave me a Fitbit. I am hoping that it, along with some healthier eating choices, will help me create a healthier life style. I am not overweight. I don’t even need to lose more than five pounds but I am hoping that the new year helps motivate me to make some changes. I don’t like diets. I love food too much. I need to learn to eat in moderation and to choose healthier options.

If you know me well, you know that I am quick to jump on a new idea or project. I thought, “Wow! I can turn this into a new blog! A staying healthy blog.”  I have a name for it too! “Skipping the Diet.”  I even began writing it and getting the website ready – but after a few days, (no surprise there…) not being an expert made me feel limited to what I would post. I shared a couple of recipes, an inspirational video – but I can share that stuff on Facebook if I wanted to. So….I think I will just add it to this blog and try to get myself writing again. Maybe it won’t all be about “Kindness” but more inspirational.  I never know where it will take me – usually I just write.

For nearly 2 1/2 years, I wrote daily on this blog. It had been my New Year’s resolution in 2013 and I stuck with it for much longer than I had imagined I could. I began slacking during the summer – maybe it was because I started grad school, my schedule was a lot busier – but it sort of fell to the wayside. I was hoping that by committing myself to a new blog with a new idea, I would inspire myself to write again nearly every day, but more importantly, hold myself accountable and be able to stick to this healthier way of eating.

There is too much “unhealthy food/health issues” in our family. My father and older brother both had major hear surgeries after heart attacks and my mother, who died from complications from COPD, also had several heart attacks. I need to be around for a long time for my two sons and my husband. I want to set a good example for them.  Maybe something is working because my 14 year old went out and bought himself a Fitbit with the Best Buy gift cards he got for Christmas.

This doesn’t mean I won’t eat treats and favorite splurges~ I LOVE food too much for that. I am hoping that I will eat less of them and not as often. I won’t deny myself of my favorite foods. I think that is why so many diets fail.  You will NEVER see me posting selfies of my body on this site. No “before and after” shots of me! I have a hard enough time with self-image and hopefully it will inspire others to make some changes as well.

I’d love to hear from others and find out how they are making healthy lifestyle changes. We can share recipes, tips and advice. I am looking forward to hearing from others and seeing the changes we make -no matter how big or small they are.

Feeding So Many

feed just one

A few days ago, I read on Facebook that one of our local food pantries was in dire need of donations for the upcoming weekend’s food handouts.  The shelves were nearly bare.  The post shared by many in our community, “went viral!” Well, as viral as it can go in our two towns, but the response was huge and the pantry shelves were filled in just a few days.

Unfortunately, after Saturday’s handouts, those shelves will be empty again.

After the Facebook thank yous and a celebration of a job well done, someone in one of the groups where it was first shared, suggested that a Facebook page be created for just this need.

I decided to take it on. With the help from a few friends, “Feed SOMany” was created. Our two towns are, South Orange and Maplewood, (SOM).  Dave came up with the clever name. I have to give him credit for that one! He’s creative with that sort of thing. Much more than I am!

The idea of the group, is to keep people informed of the needs of each pantry. To announce food drives around town and to let others know of collection dates for each pantry. Sometimes, all it takes is a small reminder and the goal of this group is to do just that!

One woman posted this morning, that Shop Rite is holding its Can Can Sale right now. A perfect time to stock up on those most needed staple items. Exactly what this group has been created for.

Summer is rough for food pantries but people are still hungry. People still need to be fed. A few extra food items in your shopping cart each week, dropped off to the pantries can really help.

If you are a resident of South Orange Maplewood, or a surrounding area, join the group. If not, maybe start your own because no one should ever have to go hungry.



Cynics and non-believers of “signs” should just stop reading now because I don’t want to know the logical reason behind this. I love getting signs from my mom and they come so rarely that when they do, I just want to keep them as small reminders that she is thinking about me and watching over our family.

I usually keep my ipad on my bedside table but for some reason on Thursday night, I left it downstairs next to my computer.  When I came downstairs, Friday morning, I did my usual routine, breakfast, answering emails, Facebook….and the ipad just sat there idly.  I do all of that on my computer.  I didn’t even look at the ipad until right as I was walking out the door to go to work, and only then because it lit up with a message.

There are always alerts on it, Words With Friends, Facebook messages, texts, but one stood out.  It was from 8:05pm – while I was still downstairs but an alert didn’t come through then. It said I had a “Facetime Call” from Ellie Gianni.  My mom.

I tried swiping the screen to see where the call came from and the message was gone when I went to it.  I put my mom’s name into my contacts and her number came up as my parent’s home phone.  I still have her name in my contacts, but whenever my dad calls me, it comes up as “Mom and Dad.” Never as Ellie.  PLUS, it could not have been a Facetime call from her home phone.

I sent a message to all of my siblings and my dad to see if any of them had been playing around with my mom’s old phone.  My dad has kept it, but it is in a drawer and not charged.  None of them had.  I asked my dad what time he had called me the night before and he told me it was around 9pm.  Still FACETIME??? How did that came up and where did it go?  There is no record of it on my regular iphone either.

My brother told us that on that same night, he had a vivid dream about my mom.  We were all at a restaurant, an old favorite of her’s, and she was telling him something.  He doesn’t know what it was that she was trying to say.

Drew took a screen shot of it.  Just so I could save it.  Still don’t know what mom was trying to tell me, but today’s photo prompt is Indsitinct, which means, not easily seen, heard, or recognized : not distinct or clear. 

Well, this could not be any more indistinct – so even though it is not a great picture, I am using it because it is something I don’t want to forget.


Little Things

little things make big

A childhood friend of mine has a blog, Maple Brown Sugar.  I love reading it!  Her humor and wit always shines through and she never fails to make me smile. Today, her subject was titled, “Little Things That Annoy, Surprise and Excite Me Today.”  Loved the idea and told her I might have to “borrow” it for my own.  Such a great idea and perfect for when I am stumped about what to write about.  Mine will be nowhere near as funny as hers, but reminds me of what I am grateful for.

So for today:

Annoyed me:

I have wracked my brain.  I had a good day. Wish I could be witty like MB on her Maple Brown Sugar posts but I’ve got truly, nothing.  Had dinner with all four of us together.  A good day at school.  Dave just brought me some chocolate treats while I was writing…okay, I shouldn’t be eating them, but I am not annoyed that I am… I did complain about my little kitchen when I was making dinner.  Not enough space to prepare everything at once, but not really annoyed, just disgruntled.  Is that the same thing?  But, dinner wound up being delicious so it didn’t last long.

Surprised me:

Coming home and finding that Dave had a very hard time finding gingerbread men that I needed for a school project so he attempted, albeit an unsuccessful attempt, to make them for my class instead.  Still no gingerbread men, but he never ceases to surprise me.

Excited me:

The amount of toiletries and treats that I have collected for a former student of mine.  She is serving our country in Kosovo right now and over the weekend we were chatting on Facebook.  I asked her if she needed anything and she said the selection of “toiletries” is not very selective.  I put the word out on Facebook and have several boxes that I am going to be sending to her and her unit this weekend.  I am so grateful to everyone who has helped out!

and I am adding one,

Saddened me:

Finding out that one of our very best friends lost his mother today.  She had been ill for awhile and I am sure that they are all relieved that she is at peace now but it still made all of us very sad.  I have known her for nearly 25 years and will miss her.

Perhaps the “Little Things” blog will reappear now and then.  it is always a good thing to remind ourselves of all the little things that make our days big things.

Heartbreaking Message

death of teen

I just returned from a wake for a girl who died much too young.  She was the daughter of a friend of mine from Middle School. I haven’t seen her in probably 25 years but we have reconnected via Facebook.  

There are a lot of people who are giving up Facebook but for me, I’m glad there’s a place where I can go and find little pieces of old and new friends’ lives.  It helps me stay connected to relatives both near and far.  These may not all be people that I still see but I still like feeling connected with people who were a part of my life at one time or another.  I like the minutia of it and keeping up with what’s going on in their lives.

It was because of Facebook that I reconnected with this particular friend, Lori.  During Middle School, we were together nearly everyday.  For three years, we ate lunch at the same table with the same group of kids.  We spent time at each others homes. She was a big part of my life during those early teen years!

We didn’t really stay in touch after high school, but over the last few years, through Facebook, we reconnected. We posted on each others photos and communicated that way.  We both had children who would be Seniors in high school this year so we were going through some of the “big events” at the same time.  I don’t know all of the details of her daughter’s death, but I do know it was an accident.  Her latest post was this, kids stop doing pills and shit. accidents happen. don’t u know how much ur parents love u?” 

When I saw her today, after offering my condolences, she told me to remind my kids to be smart and to make good choices.  As I sat there and watched a procession of teenagers walking into the funeral home breaking down in tears, I hoped that she passed that message on to all of them.  It is heartbreaking that it has to take something like this to get a message across.

I pray for her family that they can find some peace during this time.




After school today a few teachers met up for happy hour.  We don’t do this often enough, so when the opportunity arises, I make every effort to attend!  I am so lucky to work where I do. So many of us are friends outside of school and I enjoy their company so much!  Five of us met up today and sat around for about two hours and it was a really great way to end a really long week!

The five us ranged in age from “20 something” to “50 something” and despite the age difference, we had a great time.  We all took notice of the table behind us.  Three young girls, probably in their early 20’s were sitting there.  All of them had their phones in their hands, right in front of their faces.  Although they were talking to one another, none of them glanced away from their phones.  All three of them were on some sort of social media, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram…whatever it was, they never seemed to make eye contact with each other.  It was actually kind of sad.

I have to admit, all five of us had our phones out on the table.  It is crazy how much we rely on these things!  I am guilty of it!  I kept checking the time because I needed to pay the parking meter.  A few of us were receiving text messages from our kids but none of us were really using it for anything else.  Did we really need them out? Probably not, but all of us kept them right there beside us anyway, like another guest at the table!

We got onto a conversation about it.  What kind of children are we raising?  Can we really be out in public without phones anymore?  Young kids seem to know nothing else. Every single thing that we do is being shared the moment it happens.  Are we raising tech-addicted kids and is this a good thing or a bad thing?  Is social media making us less social? Are our children going to be incapable of dealing with human interaction?

Last week, a new student joined our class.  Today, she said, “Mrs. Sinclair, I’ve seen one of those things before!!”  I wasn’t sure what she was pointing at so I asked her to show me.  She got up, walked across the room and pointed to the telephone that is attached to the wall.  I was flabbergasted!  Most of these five and six year olds, are so unfamiliar with such an ordinary thing as a telephone.  I thought about it and even in my own home, our regular phone is cordless, so imagine how foreign it must be for these kids to see a phone, with push buttons and a cord attached to a wall!

Wouldn’t it be great if we could just take the time to turn our phones off, and take the time to enjoy each other.  Live in the moment, enjoy each others company and take the time to actually converse with one another.  Facebook, Twitter and all the rest will be there when we are done.  Post later.  Enjoy life in “real time.”


So Proud of You

proud of you

Last night my boys went to the NJ Devils game with my dad. When they got home, DJ said, “Drew, are you going to tell mom what you did at the game tonight?”  I replied, ‘Uhoh, what…” and DJ said, “No mom, it is good!”  We all laughed and Drew got embarrassed and told me this story,

You know how I always go up to the glass for warm ups?  Well, I went there tonight and I was hoping that a player would toss me a puck after practice.  There was this kid standing near me who had special needs and he was wearing a Toronto jersey.  He reminded me of that girl we saw at The Newark Bears Game.  That was the kind of special needs he was.  Well, he wanted a puck so badly but he didn’t get one and I guess he got tired of standing there because he and his dad went back to their seats.  Then, I got a puck and I went over and gave it to him instead of keeping it. The kid was so happy!  Later, the dad and the kid came over to our seats and thanked me.  At the end of the game, I went up to where the referees leave the ice and NJ, (the Devils mascot,) tossed me the game puck!

I was so proud I nearly cried.  DJ was just nodding his head the whole time telling me that really happened.  My dad told me how proud he was of him.  I had to share it – I was so filled with joy that he had done such a generous thing.  For anyone who knows him, he is a collector and giving up a puck was probably not the easiest thing for him!!  I shared the story on Facebook before I left for work this morning.  I got home this evening and found that there were just under 200 likes and almost 50 comments about it!  Comments saying others were going to pay it forward today after reading it.  Comments about how he is growing up into such a kind young man.  Comments about how Dave and I “must be doing something right!”

He and I just read the comments together and he is embarrassed – self-conscious perhaps, but I can tell he is pleased with himself.  It is so nice watching him grow into such a kind hearted boy.  Many of the comments mentioned “great parenting.”  I had great role models to follow, and now my children are following in those footsteps as well.  We talk all the time about how easy it is to do the right thing and last night, Drew demonstrated that perfectly.

It’s not my birthday…but thanks anyway!

not my birthday

This morning, I shared a “chain letter” type of post on Facebook.  I rarely do those, but since it was about February being National Heart Awareness Month, I felt I really needed to. This was the post,

I normally don’t do these group shares BUT since so much of my family has been affected by heart disease, I decided to do it this time. ❤ February is National Heart Awareness Month<3  Without replying to this message, put a heart on your wall; no comment, just a heart. Next, post a heart on the wall of the person who sent you this message. Then send this message to your friends, One small act of solidarity.”

My family has been greatly affected by heart disease.   My mother had several heart attacks before she died, her first one she had before she was fifty years old.  My father had a quadruple bypass and so did my brother.  He was only 37 at the time.  I am very conscious of heart health and try to eat and exercise properly to keep mine healthy because it doesn’t seem as if genetics are on my side!

I shared that post this morning with the hopes that others would share it and Facebook would be ablaze with hearts when I got home from work.  I was not disappointed.  There are hearts popping up all over my page and the pages of friends and family.  What I WAS surprised at was the overwhelming number of birthday messages for me today!!  Over and over again, friends from near and far were wishing me a happy day! What makes this so odd, is that today is NOT my birthday.  Not even my “birthday month!”  My birthday is in May.  I am not sure how the “birthday rumor” got started but it was nice to see all the good wishes and nice messages!

I responded with a message thanking everyone for the warm wishes, promising that they could all spread the love again in less than three months!!  Lucky me!

(And if you get the chance, please help spread the word for February Heart Awareness Month and post a heart on your Facebook wall – I’d love to see them popping up even more!)

Pay it forward challenge

pay it forward heart

Yesterday, a friend shared this on her Facebook page:

Pay it forward challenge:
Let’s have fun and spread some love:2014 pay it forward. The first 12 people to comment on this status will receive a surprise from me within the calendar year. There will be no warning of when it will happen and it can be a card, a gift, etc. The catch…Those 12 people must make the same offer in their FB status. Inbox me your address if you are far away. I will find you if you’re local or close by. Help spread some love!!

I loved it!  Of course, I shared immediately and got my first 12 people right away.  I have decided to go over twelve though.  Why not?  It doesn’t have to be expensive – in fact it doesn’t have to cost a thing.  If those 12 people shared, like they were supposed to….and each of their twelve share…well, you can imagine the kindness spreading!!

Some of the people that responded to my post are local and good friends of mine so it will be easy!  Others, I know casually but I will find a way to do it.  For those who don’t live close by, I will make it happen.  I have a whole year to do it.  12 people, 12 months?  It really couldn’t be easier!  If you haven’t seen it yourself already, try it.  Get the kindness rolling!


A New Blogger…


A friend of mine asked me for some help today.  She has decided to start a blog.  I went to her house and we sat down together to get her started.  We used wordpress.com to begin it because that is what I use so I am familiar with it.  I love checking my “stats” and seeing how many people have read it.   My youngest son always is amazed to see where my readers are located while at the same time, I wonder why someone across the world would be interested in what I have written, but it makes me so happy that they are!

Before I began blogging, I don’t think that I even understood exactly what “blogging” was.  I made sure my friend knew this and told her that I have been learning as I go along… and what a learning process it has been for me!!  I find it amusing that I have “followers”, not just people who read my blogs via Facebook and Twitter, but people who actually get alerts when I post something new.  I have also begun to follow other bloggers and I look forward to reading their blogs each time they post something new.  It has opened a whole new world.

Now that I am getting more familiar with the “blogosphere”, I am realizing just how much is out there to read.  There is really no way for me to keep up without it becoming a full time job!  I told my friend this and we talked about having a catchy title for it so that she will generate readers.  I am not going to spoil it for her here by revealing her title, but I love what she chose and I cannot wait for her to write her first blog so that I can share it with my readers too!

Stay tuned….I am sure that I will be sharing her with you soon!