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A Universally Appealing Christmas Song December 25, 2013

Posted by Christine Coleman in 2013.
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There are a lot of Christmas songs out there, to state an obvious fact. Some are better than others for a variety of reasons. The lyrics to the song, the artist — the usual reasons for liking or not liking any song.

José Feliciano - Feliz NavidadThis holiday season, though, I’ve realized there’s one song that everyone seems to like … and seemingly cannot resist singing when hearing it.

“Feliz Navidad” by Jose Feliciano.

My discovery of this began several weeks ago, at Walmart of all places. Christmas music was playing rather loudly overhead as I made my way through the grocery section — just the usual, forgotten-moments-after-you-hear-them songs. Until “Feliz Navidad” came on. As I continued along, most everyone I saw was either bobbing his or her head along or singing, especially the title words. Any age, any race, male or female — didn’t matter. Everyone was listening and into the song.

The other night, I learned the same thing was true with my nieces. At ages 9, 11 and 15, there isn’t much they can agree on — yet all three were singing along when this song came on as we were driving out looking at Christmas lights. (Another discovery: Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas is You” is also a uniting factor for them, as we listened to that over and over.) Monday, with just my 11-year-old niece with me, she wanted to listen to “Feliz Navidad” on repeat like we’d done with Mariah the night before.

Whether it’s the upbeat nature of the song, the Spanish and English lyrics, Feliciano’s performance or the combination of all three, it really is fantastic. And as you watch this video, you’ll see just what I mean in the shots of the crowd and even the other musicians. (Also, that’s Maria Shriver about 1:48 into the video, right? Singing along, of course.)

So, today, I want to wish you a Merry Christmas to all — from the bottom of my heart!

Oh, Christmas Tree … At the End of a Busy Holiday Weekend December 1, 2013

Posted by Christine Coleman in 2013, Exercise.
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Here it is, Dec. 1. And I did not blog for all 30 days in November, although I did for 19. That’s an accomplishment in itself!

At the end of this long Thanksgiving weekend, I have more I would like to write. But it’s after 10 p.m. and today was long and hectic. So I’ve enjoyed just sitting in the light from the now-up-and-decorated Christmas tree, since that was part of today’s busyness. (And it’s perfectly acceptable to decorate for Christmas now that Thanksgiving is over — remember, I’m a believer in one holiday at a time!)

Christmas treeIn scrolling through Facebook tonight, I also found something I could do in December that would definitely be pushing myself (no pun intended at all): a 30-day push-up challenge.

Sure, it’s the holiday season and I really don’t need one more thing I have to do. But at least this one’s a positive — and one I completely control myself.

I have not been exercising at all, though plenty of intentions to do so. And this requires nothing more than just getting on the floor and doing it — plus knee push-ups (which are all I can do right now) are absolutely acceptable!

So I did four sets of 25 push-ups tonight, with not much rest in between. Going back to the Y’s fitness boot camp days, I never minded doing push-ups and back then did reach a point where I could do “real” ones. That will be my goal. Actually, just doing them consistently is my real goal.

Plus doing push-ups by the light of the Christmas tree is something I can only do this month. And anything exercise-wise to feel better during this crazy month ahead is definitely a positive.

One day down, 30 to go …

An Unexpected November Sunrise November 20, 2013

Posted by Christine Coleman in 2013, Outdoors.
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11-20-13

With today’s weather forecast calling for rain all day, I was a little surprised to look out and see this sunrise begin to unfold a few minutes ago. As I stepped out onto the deck to take the picture, I was even more surprised to hear birds chirping.

The sunrise was a nice, albeit brief, gift as there already are just grayish-blue skies off to the east right now. And the heavenly quality to the clouds was an appropriate sight for today — it would have been my Dad’s 74th birthday.

Happy birthday, Dad.

It’s a Cold November Morning … November 19, 2013

Posted by Christine Coleman in 2013, Outdoors.
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11-19-13

The sun doesn’t rise until after 6:30 a.m., there’s frost everywhere — but at least there is sun. So much better than clouds, so much better than darkness.

Just trying to find the bright side … literally and figuratively.

Ah, Well, No 30 Blogs in 30 Days November 17, 2013

Posted by Christine Coleman in 2013, Goals, Writing.
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It sounded easy on Nov. 1: just post something, anything, every day for the month of November and participate in National Blog Posting Month. And for 14 straight days, I did.

That’s longer than I’ve ever posted anything on my baseball blog. It is an accomplishment!

bloggingBut Friday the 15th was busy, as two of my nieces were over to spend the night, so I didn’t post anything. Yesterday I intended to catch up and post two things … and did not. So here we are.

I do enjoy the chance to just write whatever here, or find a photo I’ve taken and use that along with a little description. I will continue to do that more often than I had been. Just not daily. Although the November blogging month thing definitely made me write more regularly — and was an incentive on quite a few of the first 14 days to actually write something on nights when I just wanted to go to bed instead.

For tonight, that’s all. A busy weekend, once again with too little accomplished from the very long list I’d hoped to get done.

Maybe some weekend I’ll actually feel the opposite on a Sunday night!

Instead of Novel Writing Month, It’s Blogging Month November 1, 2013

Posted by Christine Coleman in 2013, Writing.
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For anyone who’s a writer, November is well known as National Novel Writing Month. For participants, the goal is to write each day throughout the month with the finish line being creating a 50,000 word (at minimum) novel.

bloggingI have done NaNoWriMo (as it’s called for short) four times — actually finishing a novel draft three times. Last year, I started and did not finish.

This year, I thought about it … and then the Cardinals won the National League pennant and were in the World Series and writing about that at my main blogging home took precedence over thinking about a novel. Who needs fiction when real life is so much better? (Or so much better until your team loses the World Series?)

Yet as I saw friends posting about starting their NaNoWriMo journeys on Facebook and Twitter today, I was a little envious. Not so much that I decided to jump in and start writing a novel without really having any definitive idea for a story — no. Besides, I have plenty of other writing ahead for the United Cardinal Bloggers postseason publication, as well as editing what the rest of the Cardinal bloggers are contributing.

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A Good Thing To Remember … January 2, 2013

Posted by Christine Coleman in 2013.
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For today and every day.

just-breathe-source

We Only Get One Day at a Time January 1, 2013

Posted by Christine Coleman in 2013.
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one-day-at-a-timeHappy 2013!

For me, it’s never a surprise when the new year finally arrives. I don’t struggle with remembering the numbers in the year, because I spend so much of each one at work focused on what’s to come. We’ve been working on the 2013 convention since last year’s ended in February. We’ve already started some on 2014, even though this year’s begins Feb. 10.

And maybe that’s why I struggle so much with just living in the present, focusing on today and only this day and what I can accomplish. Because, during all those hours I’m at work throughout the course of a year, I’m always looking ahead. Always thinking about what’s still to come, the number of things that absolutely have to be accomplished for the convention and, at this particular time of year, the list is tremendously long.

So just looking at this one day — a challenge.

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