Friday, July 2, 2021
Thursday, June 3, 2021
Pursuing happiness in our day-to-day lives can be quite challenging, especially when there are obstacles that cause us stress and anxiety. One path toward a more pleasant existence is to look to the science of happiness.
I recently attended a Meetup Live with psychologist and author Dr. Tal Ben-Shahar.
Some points I took away from this event are as follows:
- There are 3 secrets of happiness: reality, reality...and reality
- Embrace unhappiness because all people experience it except psychopaths and the dead!
- Active members of social groups and organizations tend to be happier
- Real servant leaders are great at listening
- Writing about painful experiences (journaling) is helpful
- Have “islands of sanity” in your life. These are times of single focus (as opposed to multi-tasking)
- Maintaining a gratitude journal seems to elevate happiness
Sunday, May 16, 2021
Saturday, April 24, 2021
Wednesday, April 21, 2021
Once again, Victoria and I hit the road for another short adventure. This time for a class in Frederick MD for Victoria and then to meet Kayla in New Jersey.
While Victoria was in class on Saturday, I explored Frederick a little bit. The Visitors Center recommended the downtown Frederick Walking Tour.
Here are pictures of the Community Bridge and the mile-long Carroll Creek Park. It must look really beautiful in the summer when the plants and flowers are in bloom.
Next was the artwork "Edge of Gravity" which is a small mural created by William Cochran in 1991.
On East Church Street, I took this picture of the clustered spires which were distinguished in John Greenleaf Whittier's poem, "The Ballad of Barbara Fritchie."
Further down E Church St, I came upon the Trail Mansion, constructed by Col Charles Trail in 1852.
After the walking tour of downtown Frederick, I took to the country and found the Utica Mills Covered Bridge. It was built in 1850 and spanned the Monocacy River. It has been reconstructed and now crosses Fishing Creek.
On Sunday, while I was waiting for Victoria to finish her class, I took another drive to the north of Frederick and discovered these gems:
Loy's Station Covered Bridge
Cunningham Falls State Park
Sunday evening, Victoria and I made the short drive from Frederick MD to Mt Laurel NJ where we spent Monday with Kayla. Here's a picture of Victoria and Kayla enjoying fish tacos.
Tuesday morning, before our long drive home, we enjoyed breakfast with a couple of young friends who live in Philadelphia, Karen and Ruthie. Here's a picture of the ladies chatting.
Our drive home was uneventful and now there's another memory stored away in the "road trip" area of my brain.
Monday, April 5, 2021
For my 58th birthday, I chose to take another road trip with Victoria. This time it was to investigate the possibility of investing in a cabin and boat rental business in Tennessee. The trip also afforded us the opportunity to spend a few days with friends, who drove over from Wichita KS.
Monday the 29th, we made the trip from Xenia to Chattanooga mostly on non-interstate highways. We stayed in one of the cabins at the business we were investigating for a couple of nights. Here's our view of the Tennessee River from the front porch of the cabin where we stayed.
Here's a picture from our pontoon boat ride on Tuesday when we were out on the Tennessee River.
On Wednesday, we took the short drive to Tracy City to look at luxury tiny homes in several developments there. That afternoon we met our friends from Wichita, Don and Paula, at the condo we had rented for the rest of the week.
Here are a couple of pictures from Montague Park near our condo looking towards Lookout Mountain. Montague Park is a 33-acre parkland showcasing large, contemporary sculptures in open, grassy surroundings.
Friday found us visiting the Tennessee Valley Railroad and Museum. We took the Missionary Ridge local train ride which begins at the Grand Junction Station and takes you over four bridges and through the pre-Civil War Missionary Ridge Tunnel to the East Chattanooga station.
The roundtrip is about an hour long (15 minutes to East Chattanooga, 25 minute layover, and 15 minutes back to Grand Junction) and includes a turntable demonstration. Here’s the locomotive being turned around on the turntable.
During our train ride, we learned of The Great Locomotive Chase (also known as the Andrews' Raid) which was a military raid that occurred April 12, 1862, in northern Georgia during the Civil War. Volunteers from the Union Army, led by civilian scout James J. Andrews, commandeered a train, The General, and took it northward toward Chattanooga, Tennessee, doing as much damage as possible to the vital Western and Atlantic Railroad (W&A) line as they went.
When Victoria and I took a walk through the Chattanooga National Cemetery later that afternoon, we came across Ohio's tribute to the Andrews Raiders.
Here's a short video showing the entire Chattanooga National Cemetery from its highest point.
Saturday found us taking a scenic drive on a short portion of the Lookout Mountain Scenic Parkway. We stumbled across the Lookout Mountain Flight Park. This is a picture of the ramp from where hang gliders launch. It looks almost as crazy as jumping from a perfectly good airplane when skydiving!
Although we did not ride the Lookout Mountain Incline Railway, I did capture this short video of one of the trains arriving on Lookout Mountain.
On Easter Sunday we made the drive from Chattanooga to our home in Xenia, and found our home still standing, and senior our cat still alive. One more road trip in the great memories portion of my brain!