Maximizing Your Happiness Meter

[Happy Faces by Alice Herden -- LEGAL USE OF THIS PHOTO LICENSED AND SECURED VIA DREAMSTIME - August 2014]

[Happy Faces by Alice Herden -- LEGAL USE OF THIS PHOTO LICENSED AND SECURED VIA DREAMSTIME - August 2014]

Lately, I’m confronting the topic of happiness in my life. I’m a fortunate person; my opportunities are many and I have wonderful people in my life who care about me.

That being said, I want to maximize the “happiness meter” in my life.

How, you ask?

First, let’s consider my diet. I control my calorie intake by using MyFitnessPal, which is a wonderful tool that helps a person monitor their calories to meet their health and weight goals. Currently, I’m happy to announce that I’m in maintenance mode. My current weight is healthy for me, including a healthy body mass index (BMI). However, living in maintenance mode doesn’t mean that I can eat what I want, when I want. As such, when I want to indulge in gratuitous calories, I want to consume the BEST and MOST TASTY foods for the calories consumed. I don’t want to waste them on any old donut; I want to select higher-quality tasty foods that maximize my happiness meter. Last night, that included a large slice of chocolate pie. At first, I thought it was supposed to be chocolate cream, though it turned out to be chocolate meringue. *insert sad expression* I don’t like meringue, so I only ate the crust and the chocolate part. While the chocolate portion tasted okay, my happiness meter wasn’t exactly pegged over my selection.

That’s only one example, of course, but you probably see where I’m going with this.

Many aspects of our life are finite, chiefly among them, our life span. So, when I have some discretionary time available to me, I want to expend the moments via the most satisfying manner possible. That is, I want to maximize my happiness meter.

The Name of the Wind - Patrick Rothfuss

Recently, I decided that I want to read a novel…someone else’s! I carefully perused my to-be-read (TBR) list and researched my top three selections on both Goodreads and Amazon. Finally, I downloaded The Name of the Wind, the first book in the Kingkiller Chronicle by Patrick Rothfuss. I’m staring it today, in fact. Therefore, my happiness meter is currently in flux. I’ll let you know how that turns out.

Do you have a happiness meter? If so, what satisfying “item” pegged it for you most recently?

And, of course, what are you reading right now?

I want to know, so please leave a comment for me!

Oh, and my latest YouTube video for the week of October 11th is going live by tonight, so please check it out! My YouTube videos are at CLICK HERE.

Until later, enjoy life; be kind to those around you, and Happy Reading! Peace.

Summer is Coming! Read All About It…

[LEGAL USE OF THIS PHOTO LICENSED AND SECURED VIA DREAMSTIME - June 2015 - Credit: Mike Brake ]

[LEGAL USE OF THIS PHOTO LICENSED AND SECURED VIA DREAMSTIME - June 2015 - Credit: Mike Brake ]

Step aside, wicked White Walkers…Summer is coming!

(No, I couldn’t resist a Game of Thrones reference…)

Okay, perhaps there’s still a few days left on the calendar before the official summer solstice begins. However, now is definitely the time for you to get busy.

Busy doing what, you ask?

Cleaning the grill to get ready for endless summer barbeques? Sure.

Putting away your sweaters and unpacking your shorts and swimwear? Of course.

Unboxing your collection of gaudy, plastic margarita glasses? Well, yeah.

But most importantly, it’s time to begin picking out your summer reads!

C’mon, it’s time again for more memorable hours spent taking some family vacation time and escaping into realms of enjoyment while your spouse swims, the kids play, and the dogs snooze.

It’s time for you to fall head over heels for the juiciest romances, kick back with the most charming chick-lit, patio chair lounging over plot-twisting mysteries, lying pool-side with paranormals, tree hammock haranguing with some horror, and umbrella sitting with sci-fi. Remember last year when you experienced some of the best reads that you could have ever set your eyes upon?

Well, it time once again to “read-rave-repeat,” my dearest bookworms!

Below are the two novels that are prominent on my summer reads list. In fact, they’re already purchased, downloaded onto my Kindle, and ready to delve into.

Old Mans War - Book 1

First on my list is Old Man's War, which is book #1 in John Scalzi’s epic space fantasy series of the same name. First debuting in 2007, Scalzi had made quite a name for himself with this unique spin on the space-faring hero, only this time in the body of a much older person than we’re used to rooting for. Since then, the series has continued a successful reign and Scalzi has become as a proven high-quality author. I’m excited about reading the first book!

Ocean at End of the Lane

Next, I selected a work from one of the most gifted and inspirational masters of fiction, the incomparable Neil Gaiman. His 2013 hit, The Ocean at the End of the Lane, captured my attention and practically insisted to be purchased. Coming from an amazing author like Gaiman, how could I possibly refuse? Suffice to say, I’m more than eager to read it.

But enough about me, let’s get back to YOU.

What’s on your summer read list? Drop me a line and let me know.

Now, get busy and go purchase some summer reads.

Oh, and while you’re at it, perhaps you could refill my iced tea glass and made sure my barbeque has a side order of extra sauce.

Ahh, thank you.

As always, enjoy life; be kind to those around you, and Happy Reading! Peace.

Tis the Season! – or – Yule Be Sorry!

[LEGAL USE OF THIS PHOTO LICENSED AND SECURED VIA DREAMSTIME - October 2014]   
  
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[LEGAL USE OF THIS PHOTO LICENSED AND SECURED VIA DREAMSTIME - October 2014]

Wow, it feels like I just finished eating Thanksgiving dinner, and yet, Black Friday and Cyber Monday have also come and gone. And let’s not forget the other litany of pithy slogans for other days that give merchandisers another reason to draw you to their shops and websites for holiday promotions and discounts. There was Shop Local Saturday, for one. Did I leave any out? How about Tip-Toe-to-Our-Sale Tuesday? Or perhaps Sin-if-You-Miss-It Sunday? Wassailing Wednesday? Tinsel Thursday? Frosty Festival Friday? *shaking my head*

As for me, I’m keeping the holidays simple. Yes, I’m giving gifts to a number of people, though most likely it will be of the plastic gift card variety. Honestly, what can we all really need? And besides, who really knows what each other needs? In the end, I’d like to think that, health and food notwithstanding, most of us really only need the compassion, support, and fellowship of each other to make the holidays fulfilling and special. I’m planning get-togethers with family and friends to celebrate the holidays; time spent with those I care about is always a gift worth savoring, don’t you agree?

For many people, between the holiday sales, baking schedules, and preparing for social gatherings for relatives and friends, there’s not a lot of discretionary time left to really sit and bask in the warmth and magic of the season. And isn’t that really such a shame?

Well, not me, I tell you. I’m already relishing mugs of hot cocoa and hot tea, thanks to the unseasonably cool and drizzly weather conditions that we’ve had in recent days. I’ve started watching my favorite holiday films and specials, including the classic Charlie Brown Christmas Special. Oh, and I plan to re-watch each and every Doctor Who holiday special to date, all leading up to the Christmas Day Doctor Who special starring Peter Capaldi. This will be Capaldi’s first Christmas special as the 12th Doctor. Frankly, given how stoic Capaldi’s Doctor has been portrayed, I’m not sure how many warm fuzzies Steven Moffatt can believable sell in the script. As such, I’m not expecting many moments for either heartwarming dialogue or sentimental tears. *Suddenly missing David Tennant and Matt Smith*

Image Property of Puffin Publishers, All Rights Reserved, 2013.

Image Property of Puffin Publishers, All Rights Reserved, 2013.

Are you doing any reading right now? I recently finished reading a short novella by Neil Gaiman, Doctor Who: Nothing O'Clock: Eleventh Doctor. It involved Amy Pond and a mysterious entity called the Kin. It was highly satisfying and conveyed fantasy in a manner that is nearly magical for Mr. Gaiman. Suffice to say, I highly recommend it! You can read my review of it on Goodreads.com at <click here>

Well, best wishes on your holiday preparations and celebrations. I have some public events coming up later this month, so please check in on my website under EVENTS very soon. For now, I’m off to watch some college football while sipping some tasty hot cocoa. The weather outside is cool and overcast, as well as occasionally drizzly with rain. Ah, tis the season!

Oh, and Tabby my cat says, “Meow-lo!”

[Tabby Waving -- PHOTO COPYRIGHT 2014 BY JAZ PRIMO]     
  
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[Tabby Waving -- PHOTO COPYRIGHT 2014 BY JAZ PRIMO]