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Book Review: The Happiness Project

Happiness Project Book Cover image

I’ve been a devoted reader of Gretchen Rubin’s blog “The Happiness Project” for quite some time and was delighted to finally sit down and read her book “The Happiness Project: Or, Why I Spent a Year Trying to Sing in the Morning, Clean My Closets, Fight Right, Read Aristotle, and Generally Have More Fun”. The book chronicles Rubin’s year of trying to discover what makes us happy and how to increase happiness in our own life – the Happiness Project.

First off, I will say that I loved the book. While many things she suggested could be constituted as common sense, they often were things that I personally knew but did not consciously apply to my life. The book is peppered with thought-provoking advice, tips and encouragement to help us lead a fuller, richer life. The book looks at many different aspects of one’s life such as marriage, family, friendship, leisure, money, and mindfulness and provides advice on how to experiences them more deeply.

She breaks the book down into 12 monthly manageable portions, each with a main theme or resolution. Each theme then, is broken down into several resolutions that help you to experience and/or accomplish the theme. For instance, the main theme for January is “Boost Energy” and the resolutions that help you accomplish this are: Go to sleep earlier, exercise better, toss, restore organize, tackle a nagging task and act more energetic”. I found some relevant, some not so much. That is the beauty of this book – you take what you want – what resonates with you – and leave the rest.

Rubin also quotes all manner of experts and studies so that book isn’t just entirely a memoir of a year in the life of a woman. Rather, she applies this research to her own life and reports the results. What I found especially effective about this book, is that it is inspiring and motivating — Rubin’s passion for the subject is evident.

I’m glad that I chose this book. It was thought-provoking, well-researched, easy and fun to read as well as potentially life-changing. Recommended!

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Decide Who You Are and Be It

Image of smoker on a bicycle

Every year, I would add add a resolution to get up early to my list of goals. My resolution would read something like: “Wake up at 5:30 every day” or “Sleep no later than 5:00”.

And each year, I would inevitably fail at keeping this goal.

Oh, my good intentions would work for awhile – a week, perhaps two. Then I would fall into my same old habit of sleeping until 8:30 or 9:00 in the morning. It was at this point I would beat myself up, berating myself for my inability to keep one simple resolution.

Then one day I recalled a conversation I had many years ago , when I used to be a cigarette smoker. I worked on the 7th floor of our building and had decided that I wanted to get into shape a bit. So rather than taking the elevator, I hoofed up the stairs every day. One day, a coworker (also a smoker) saw me coming through the stairway doors. Our conversation went something like this:

Him: “Did you just take the stairs?”Me (trying to catch my breath): “Uh-huh”Him: “Why? Is the elevator broken?”

Me: “No. I’m just trying to get some exercise.”

Him (laughing): “Either you’re a smoker, or your an exerciser. You cannot be both. You really need to decide who you are and be it.”

That conversation popped back into my mind as I thought about my inability to discipline myself enough to wake up while it was still dark outside.

Then it hit me – I am simply not a morning person. No matter how hard I try, this was not going to change – and trying to force myself to become a morning person would only lead to more frustration.

Decide who you are and be it.

This has become one of my mantras and I have now looked at other aspects of my life where I was trying to change, trying to transform myself into something I was not. Once this idea of “being myself” became part of my consciousness, it was amazing how my frustration level decreased. No more doing things I didn’t enjoy just because I felt that I should be doing them. No more trying to emulate other people’s behavior. No more goals or resolutions that were unrealistic or unattainable for me. It truly was as if a giant weight had been lifted off of my shoulders. The best part of all, I found myself to be a much more productive person once I stopped wasting my time trying to be someone I wasn’t.

How about you? Are you trying to be someone you’re not?

Photo by Akuppa

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Please Support Your Local Establishments

 

Fox Bay Cinema Grill image

The other day, I went to see a movie at the Fox Bay Cinema & Grill – a local, independently owned theater. I love going there because not only is it a movie theater, but it also features a full-service sit down menu – pizza, salads, sandwiches as well as full bar. Shortly before the movie starts, a server comes by to take your order and your food is delivered not long after the movie begins. Now that’s my idea of a dinner and a movie.

After my last visit there, I thought about how places like this are a dying breed – there are just a handful of them around these days. Slowly the independents – the Ma and Pa establishments – get pushed out by the huge chains and then what do we end up with? A town that looks like every other town – cardboard cutouts.

While traveling, you can get off at practically any exit and find that the town is practically identical to the one at the previous exit, complete with a McDonald’s, KFC, Wendy’s, Subway, Cousins, Dairy Queen, etc. I ahve found that more and more, the small towns in America are starting to look identical to each other as the independents disappear and are replaced with the same old boring chains.

For this reason, I make it a point to frequent locally owned business whenever I can and will rarely dine at a fast-food joint or a restaurant chain. By supporting the independent businesses, we can help to ensure that the personality and charm of our towns doesn’t disappear. It is not the corporate chains but rather the local businesses that make our towns unique and interesting. I have been in plenty of towns where there is a noticeable absence of independently-owned business and they feel cold, sterile and generic. The sad thing is, is that these sorts of towns – those that consist almost exclusively of corporate big box chains – are quickly becoming the norm and not the exception.

Thus, it behooves us to try to support our local businesses – to help keep our towns interesting, vibrant and alive. I’m personally thankful that there is still a place or two where I can enjoy a cocktail, dinner and a movie – without having to leave my chair.

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How to Accomplish Goals a Little At A Time

Image of yellow note

I write computer training manuals for my print-on-demand courseware company and each day, I tell myself that I will write at least one section, no matter what. To ensure that this is done, I do not allow myself to go to bed at night until I have written my one section. Now, I admit that there has been a night or two where I found myself at my desk at 1:00 am, frantically pounding away at my keyboard so that I could go to bed. Now, this doesn’t mean that I cannot write more than one section – in fact, most days, I write 4 or 5. But the point is, that I must write at least 1.

A few years ago I began the task of transcribing my paperbound journals into an electronic journal application. I have drawers and drawers of journal notebooks. But as part of my daily routine, I key in one entry. By chopping away at this a little at a time, I have almost completely finished entering them in – that’s 30 years of journals we’re talking about.

I have also written two novels the same way – by writing them a little at a time. I agree that writing 300 pages certainly sounds like a lot; however writing 1 page a day certainly seems manageable. Just think – if you write just one page a day, by the end of the year, you will have written 395 pages – an entire novel.

5 ways to accomplish goals “a little at a time”

  1. Make a promise to yourself that you will do your daily quota – no matter what. Tell yourself that before you go to bed, you must have kept your part of the agreement.
  2. Don’t bite off more than you can chew. Make sure your daily goal is reasonable. Planning on writing 25 pages a day may not be an attainable goal in the long run.
  3. Put it in writing. For many of us, if it isn’t written down, it doesn’t exist. Put your daily goals on paper or in electronic format so you can review them later.
  4. Review your list regularly. This is the key in making regular, daily progress on your goals. Post your list where you can see it or send yourself an e-mail reminder to occasionally to review your list. Some people may want to add a daily reminder on their electronic calendars.
  5. Don’t add too many daily “to do’s” on your list. If there are too many goals on your list, you may become frustrated, short on time and end up abandoning your list completely. I recommend including no more than 3 items on your daily “must-do-no-matter-what” list. When one goal is accomplished, add another.

By using the “little at a time” concept, you can easily accomplish your goals – even the big ones.

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Using the Ta-Da List

Young Man imagePhoto courtesy of skidrd

For many years now, I have, like many others, kept a daily to-do list to help me accomplish my daily tasks as well as my long-term goals. This doesn’t mean that I am always able to accomplish everything that’s on my list. On the contrary – more times that I care to admit, I am unable to cross off more than a couple of items. Now in the past, I used to get extremely frustrated with myself for slacking on my to-do list and would constantly beat myself up over my inability to accomplish what I had promised myself I would do. I found that often, being unable to accomplish the things on my to-do list instilled feelings of inadequacy.

Do you do this? Do you feel guilty when you are unable to accomplish everything on your list?

What I think is important to remember – to think about – is not how much we didn’t get done during the day but rather how much we accomplished. Awhile back, I was reading one of Julia Cameron’s books and she mentioned a favorite tool of hers: The “Ta Da List”. How this works, is rather than list out everything we need to get done, the Ta Da List celebrates everything that we accomplish throughout the day.

As I tend to journal at the end of the day, I began to get in the habit of ending my journal with a Ta Da List and I was actually more than surprised at everything that I achieved during the day. I helped me to realize that I was in fact accomplishing quite a bit every day. It also helped me to understand that I am only human and there will be those days where I just can’t quite get around to everything I had intended. People stop by, emergencies pop up, customers demand extra attention – these little things are a part of life and life is about the unexpected.

The Ta Da List not only allows you to celebrate what you have done during the day, but it also helps you to understand where you spend your energy during the day, perhaps pinpointing those little time-wasters in your life.

Here is an example of my Ta Da List so far today:

  1. Did 45 minutes of morning meditation
  2. Took 3 mile walk
  3. Wrote 2 pages of my new book
  4. Wrote out two sections of courseware
  5. Practiced harp for an hour and a half
  6. Began learning a new song on the harp
  7. Did my Spanish lessons
  8. Did two loads of laundry
  9. Did the breakfast and lunch dishes
  10. Had a phone consultation with a client
  11. Emptied out my e-mail inbox
  12. Wrote 3 blog posts
  13. Paid my bills online
  14. Made lunch
  15. Made breakfast
  16. Sorted/discarded the mail
  17. Read the blogs that I subscribe to
  18. Read my Twitter stream
  19. Swept kitchen floor

And there is still more of my day left…

You can also do a Ta Da List for an entire year. This is exactly what I did at the end of last year and when I finished my list, I was elated to discover that I was able to achieve almost all of the goals I had set for myself at the beginning of the year.

The Ta Da list can help you to become more aware of and grateful for what you do accomplish for yourself and for others throughout the day. Since I have started using this tool, I feel much more energized and motivated when I see everything I have done during the day.

So I say, sit back in your chair at the of the day, write out your list, put down your pen and say “Ta Da!”

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65 Things To Do Instead of Watching Television

Walking on the beach

In yesterday’s post, I talked about living a “television-free” lifestyle. People often ask me: what do you do with your time if you don’t watch television? I get a chuckle out of this as I feel pressed for time as it is – I couldn’t imagine spending several hours every night watching television. I would never get anything done!

Below are 50 things you can do instead of watching television:

1. Take a walk around your neighborhood
2. Read a novel
3. Bake cookies
4. Learn a musical instrument
5. Have a potluck dinner
6. Go out to a neighborhood coffee joint
7. Learn to knit, crochet or make a quilt
8. Write in your journal
9. Write a short story
10. Visit a friend
11. Spend the evening at your local library
12. Go for a bike ride
13. Go swimming
14. Go for a jog
15. Start a Memories Scrapbook
16. Write a letter to a far away friend or relative (a real one, not an e-mail)
17. Phone a friend or relative
18. Go browsing in a used bookstore
19. Rent a canoe or kayak and go for a paddle
20. Go on a picnic at a local park
21. Watch the sunset
22. Attend a free or low-cost local concert
23. Attend a play at your local high school theatre group
24. Go to a local high school or college sports event
25. Learn how to can jellies, jams and vegetables
26. Grow a vegetable garden
27. Go to a museum
28. Join a local book discussion club
29. Play a board game
30. Go to an old movie at a local inexpensive movie house.
31. Listen to your local National Public Radio Station
32. Watch the sunrise
33. Have a lively discussion with friends or family
34. Have a lengthy candlelight dinner
35. Start a blog
36. Take a class at your local Community College
37. Join Toastmaster to learn public speaking
38. Play cards
39. Bake homemade bread
40. Attend a lecture by a guest speaker
41. Learn a foreign language (or maybe more than one)
42. Learn a new computer software application
43. Learn how to program computers
44. Write a novel
45. Practice meditation
46. Join a local Meetup group (check out Meetup.com for a group near you)
47. Learn how to bake pastries
48. Listen to a book on CD
49. Declutter your house, garage, etc.
50. Spend time camping
51. Listen to a Podcast that you find interesting
52. Go fishing
53. Register in a local Master Gardener program
54. Acquire a new skill – or two, or three
55. Go bird watching
56. Join a local social/outdoors organization
57. Run for the local school board
58. Attend activities at your local Community Center
59. Create your own custom greeting cards
60. Take an online class through Lynda to learn a new computer skill
61. Take a photography class
62. Go on a Photography Walk
63.  Learn how to ride a motorcycle or scooter
64. Join a local storytelling group
65. Walk the Appalachian Trail

If you have spent a lot of your time in the past watching television, “kicking the habit” will certainly simplify your life. I know it has mine. Think of all the time you’ll have for developing new hobbies, making new friends and spending time with your loved ones. Rather then living a passive existence in front of the set, you’ll engage in more face-to-face real contact with real people. You will find yourself participating more in your real world and community rather than the fictional ones that stem from the imaginations of Hollywood writers. You’ll suddenly find yourself with time to think, reflect, dream and create and you’ll become a much more interesting person to boot. In no time at all, you’ll be glad you gave up television as your life becomes simpler and richer. I know it’s one of the best things I’ve ever done.

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Living Without Television

child watching television image

I consider myself to have been a lucky child. I was raised in a household where our evenings didn’t revolve around the television set. I was rarely allowed to watch TV while growing up and whenever I begged, pleaded, screamed, whined, moaned, pouted or put up a major hissy fit because my request to watch the idiot box was heartlessly rejected by my mother, she would inform me that I will all the time in the world to watch television when I’m an old man and too feeble to do anything else. She then would chase me outside.

She was right, of course. I was raised on a 180 acre mostly wooded farm located only a mile from Lake Superior. Instead of being constantly spoon-fed entertainment from the TV, I was forced to create my own amusement. Sure, I would be bored at first. Then, I got bored with being bored. In the process, I had to actually become creative and come up with something to do. So I would spend my time romping through the woods, fishing in nearby creeks, playing ball with the neighbors, playing with my two dogs, camping with friends, learning to cook, swimming in the lake, writing stories, inventing games with the neighbor kids, exploring abandoned buildings, selling night-crawlers and worms to the locals, picking wild berries, digging tunnels in the hillside, growing my own garden, and listening to music or radio events – generally enjoying my childhood. Instead of lamely staring at the artificial glow of a piece of furniture and engrossing myself in the lives that someone else was living, I had to get out of the house and create my own life.

Being without TV also turned me into an avid reader, which I still am to this day. The highlight of my week would be the trips our family would take every Saturday to the local public library about 10 miles away. I never failed to walk out with an armload of books and would then spend my days accompanying Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys on their latest chilling mystery, or floating down a lazy river on a raft with Huck Finn and Tom Sawyer. I wonder how much of that I would have missed had I spent 7 hours a day (the average time the television is on in the typical American household) mesmerized by the TV? Rather than being able to recite every episode of Bewitched, I have cultivated lifelong interests stemming from the near absence of television during my childhood.

It’s possible that growing up with limited television viewing is the reason I don’t miss it so much now in my life. Although there was a short period during my college years when I fell into the zombie-like trap of television viewing — and found my evenings planned around which shows were scheduled on which nights. Not coincidentally, this was also the time when “spendthrift mentality” dominated my life. I do not find it coincidental that television is the avenue that delivers the majority of advertising to us. The advertisers convince us that if we buy their products, we can be more attractive, more popular and more accepted by others. But in fact what television ads create is an insatiable appetite for more and a general feeling of discontent with our lives. We’re presented with the latest plastic gizmo from China and we end up feeling that we absolutely must have this in order to be a better person, a more prestigious person, or a more popular person. Television’s sole purpose is to sell us products and convince us that we actually need this junk. Television molds our minds and manipulates us in order to make us think the way the corporate advertisers want us to think.

I personally have found that when I watched a lot of TV, my spending increased along with the sentiment of being unsatisfied with what I already have. It’s amazing how this feeling of dissatisfaction with our present lives and this desire for “more” is slowly instilled into our minds without our realizing it. Television creates in us a consumer who is perpetually dissatisfied, anxious, envious, bored and left with a feeling of wanting more. Television tells us that if we live in a fancy house, buy expensive clothes, have a flashy car, a face without zits, and an iPhone, we will be better citizens. It tells us that in order to live rich, happy lives, we have to “consume.” When I nearly eliminated television from my life, I no longer had the urge to rush to the mall on the weekend and buy a bunch of stuff that I didn’t need. I no longer felt that I had to consume to feel that I was a valuable human being and have stopped comparing my lifestyle to the fictional characters represented on television. In limiting my exposure to advertising, I now have no idea what the latest gadget advertisers are trying to push on us and convince us that we can’t live without. So if I don’t know it’s out there, then I can’t possibly want it.

My goal in simplifying my life has been to only introduce those things which I feel are positive influences in my life. In doing so, I have decided that watching hours of violence, murder and rape is indeed not a positive influence in my life and absorbing myself in sitcoms every evening whose annoying laugh tracks tell me when I should laugh (as if I am unable to determine for myself what is amusing) does not add freedom to my life or make me a better person. Does having an advertiser literally scream at us every 10 minutes to buy their products really add an element of simplicity and inner peace to our lives?

I find that TV also makes us boring. Whenever I hear a bunch of people gathered around discussing the television shows that were on the previous night, I am almost always amazed. Rather than finding these people lively and interesting individuals, I find them and their topic of conversation to be dull and tedious. Is that the only thing we have to talk about these days – what happened on Lost, Dexter or CSI? Are the lives of fictional characters really relevant to anything? Do we truly care what happens to these people who don’t even really exist? Could you imagine if the shows we watched featured all of our favorite television characters sitting alone in their own separate rooms staring at the TV then gathering together later to discuss the plots of the sitcoms they just watched? We would probably find the whole concept idiotic and boring. But that’s what a lot of us are living. Rather than create our own interesting experiences, we live vicariously though imaginary television characters.

When I tell people that I don’t watch TV the first question I get is, “What on earth do you do in the evenings then?” Many people find it amazing that someone doesn’t pass their evenings in front of the tube, as if watching TV was a natural part of our existence. Think about it – our grandparents had full, satisfying lives without television and so can we.

I recall a conversation recently where I mentioned that I had just finished a second novel and am coming only smashingly with the learning the harp. My companion said, “how do you find the time to do all of this?” It’s amazing how much you can accomplish when you have an extra 4-5 hours every evening.

I came up with a few ideas for activities that do not include television which I will post tomorrow. In the meantime, why not create your own personalized list?

Image courtesy of Aaron Escobar

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Letting Go of the Past

Duck Fight

Photo courtesy of Smoobs

Many of us are unwilling or unable to let go of the past. We carry this burden with us and instead of sending our energy to our work, our goals, or to spark our creativity, we end up sending it to resentments, grievances, past wrongs, and anger. I refer to this as “investing in a mausoleum” – because sending your energy to past events never pays off.

This reminds me of the story of two Zen monks, Tanzan and Ekido, who were traveling together down a muddy road. A heavy rain had just fallen. Near a village, they came across a lovely girl wearing a silk kimono and sash. She was trying to cross the road but the mud was so deep that it would have ruined her kimono. “Come on, girl”, Tansan said. He picked her up and carried her over the mud to the other side.

Both monks walked in silence until they reached the village five hours later. Finally, Ekido could no longer restrain himself. He said to Tanzan, “You know very well that monks are not allowed to go near females – especailly the young and lovely ones. It is dangerous. Why did you do that? Why did you carry her?”

“I put the girl down hours ago, ” Tanzan said. “Why are you still carrying her?”

Like Ekido, people who cannot let go of past situations and events carry huge burdens in their minds. Not only can such a burden become part of your sense of self, but can result in illness as well. Constant worry or dwelling on wrongs of the past can result in ulcers, digestive disorders and many other physical imbalances. Keeping past emotions and events alive in our minds also prevents us from focusing on the present, where our attention needs to be. Worry, resentment, bitterness and anger at past events do nobody any good; there are no benefits to it and it solves nothing. Again, it is investing in a mausoleum.

In the book, The Power of Now, Eckhart Tolle observed that when two ducks get into a fight, which never lasts very long, they will then separate and float off in the the opposite direction. Each duck will flap its wings vigorously a few times, as if washing their hands of the fight. After doing so, they float on peacefully, as if nothing had ever happened.

Perhaps that what we need to learn how to do – to learn how to flap our wings and then put the past where it belongs – in the past. We’ll be better for for it.

 

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Florentine Opera at the Lake

Forentine Opera at Alterra on the lake

One of my goals for this summer was to take more advantage of many wonderful free concerts in the Milwaukee area. So last night I hopped on my bicycle and pedaled down to the Alterra on the lake for an evening of music with the Florentine Opera. The Florentine Opera is one of Milwaukee’s oldest and well-known performing arts companies (they are celebrating their 75th anniversary) and I have be fortunate to attend on of their operas a while ago.

But opera…outdoors! This was something I hadn’t done before. The concert featured R. Stuart Mitchell (who was a bit late as he got caught in traffic), Jason Melik, Doug Clemons and James Barany, with Anne Van Deusen at the piano. All I can say is…why haven’t I attended any of these before? The singing and music were awesome. I was more than impressed by the range of the voices and the talent of the performers.

The repertoire of music was also quite varied – we had songs from West Side Story, My Fair Lady, Kiss Me Kate, Carousel, Mexican Hayride, Man of La Mancha and more. They sang several of old favorites that most people would recognize as well. The song “If you’ve only got a mustache” was especially fun.

The concert took place right in front of the coffee shop, with guests spread out on blankets and portable chairs on the lawn (the grassy area is quite large actually). Some folks brought picnic baskets, complete with high-end wine and cheeses. Others enjoyed the array of sandwiches, desserts and coffee offered by Alterra. Alterra had a tent set up outside making it convenient to purchase goodies during the show. I was pleased to see that there were a couple of portable restrooms set up as well.

I’ll close by saying that I was thrilled by the performance and am already looking forward to their next one on July 23rd. It will once again be held at the Alterra, located at 1701 N. Lincoln Memorial Drive across from McKinley Marina.

Forentine Opera at Alterra on the lake

If you’d like to find out more about the Florentine Opera, visit their Web site for news and information about their upcoming performances.

Forentine Opera at Alterra on the lake

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Camping at Nelson Dewey State Park

View from campsite at Nelson Dewey

View from campsite at Nelson Dewey

I went on my first camping trip of the season at Nelson Dewey State Park (named after the first governor of Wisconsin) in Cassville, Wisconsin. Now I have heard about the park several times over the years but this was my first visit – and I was truly impressed! I didn’t realize what an awesome place this was. The sites are on a bluff overlooking the Mississippi. We chose one of the four secluded walk-in sites right on the bluff. Talk about the million dollar view! The first thing you see in the morning when getting out of the tent is the breathtaking panorama of the Mississippi river.

View of the Mississippi River from my tent

View of the Mississippi River from my tent

Right across the street from the park is historic Stonefield, a recreation of an rural village from the 1800’s. I took the tour which featured Wisconsin’s typical dairy farms and farming equipment of the era, and a typical downtown street in a farming village – complete with barber, grocery store and undertaker. The tour concluded with a tour of the estate of Governor Dewey in all of its slendor.

Stonefield Village

Stonefield Village

Close to the park was the town of Cassville. I must say that there was not much going on there. We enjoyed a wonderful breakfast at the Rivers Cafe – the servers there were a hoot! Not only were they fun and friendly, but also quite informative about the area. The only other place we ate at was the Town Pump. They had a minimal breakfast menu (eggs only!) but both the server and the cook were a tad on the surly side. Perhaps they were just having a bad morning? Not a place to which I would probably return. Cassville is an extremely quiet town so if you are looking for action, you’d probably want to head across the river to Prairie du Chien.

Now if you are the kind of person who has to be continuously on the go, it is important to note that there is not much to do in the park. There are a couple of short hiking trails but mostly, it’s a place for peace and quiet. There are, however, things to do in the area. At Wyalusing State Park, which is not too far away, you can paddle through the river sloughs as well as fish, bike and picnic. I have both canoed and kayaked the backwaters of the Mississippi there and the wildlife is both varied and abundant (you can’t spit without hitting an eagle!). There is also the city of Prairie du Chien across the river, if you want to get away from nature for a bit.

We did spend an afternoon hiking at the Effigy Mounds National Monument. There, one can find 200 burial mounds, many in the shape of bears and birds. Supposedly, the mounds were creating by American Indian tribes over 1,000 years ago. The mounds are dispersed over a beautiful picturesque landscape. Many are on top of the bluff, which is a bit of a climb initially – but the view from the top is more than worth the effort. The hike along the bluff is quite beautiful. I remember years ago taking a full moon hike there – I wonder if they still do that?

Effigy Mounds effigy_1.jpg

All in all, a very fun trip. I think I may plan another excursion there in the fall once the leaves change color.

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First Post

This is my first post! As I mentioned in the About page, I have decided to move from a Web page to a blog as I have a tendency to forget about and neglect my Web page. Hopefully, I shall not do the same with the blog.

The purpose of this blog is to provide me a space to write about my current work, as well as add my thoughts/reflections about life and our culture – all the things that provide me food for writing.

I do welcome all correspondence so feel free to e-mail me if you have any questions. Of course, comments on blog posts are welcome as well.