Monthly Archives: April 2015

Homemade Gnocchi

By: Gloria Marie

divorce advice, single women, homemade gnocchi, single happy strong,

One of my favorite hobbies and a favorite way to relax is cooking. It may be from my Italian heritage. In my house when I was growing up, everything revolved around food. I guess to this day, it still provides comfort to me. Cooking is a type of meditation for me. I immense myself in preparing a recipe and feel gratitude for anyone that had anything to do with bringing the food to my kitchen. The April recipe is for homemade gnocchi.
My Mom always made homemade gnocchi. It was a family favorite. She made hers with mashed potatoes. In my recipe, the gnocchi is made with ricotta cheese. They are lighter and more delicate than the ones made with mashed potatoes. What is really great, is that they are so easy to make. You will never buy prepared gnocchi again. This recipe serves four.
1 16 oz. container of whole-mild ricotta
1 large egg
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
½ teaspoon salt
¾ cup flour
1. Set a strainer lined with paper towels over a bowl. Add the ricotta and let the cheese drain for about one hour.
2. In a large bowl, mix the strained ricotta, egg, cheese, and flour. Cover and refrigerate for 15 minutes.
3. Check the dough, it should be a little tacky. If it clings to your fingers, put a little more flour in, one teaspoon at a time. Refrigerate another 15 minutes.
4. Sprinkle a cookie sheet with flour.
5. Get the dough from the refrigerator. Sprinkle your hands with flour and also the counter you are working on. Grab a tennis ball size of the dough and roll it into a log shape. Cut the log into 3/4” pieces. Toss with a little flour on the baking sheet to prevent sticking. Repeat with the remaining dough.
6. You can cook them at this point or freeze them to use later. If cooking, boil a pot of water and add ½ of the gnocchi. Gently stir them, so they do not stick. When they come to the surface, reduce heat to medium and cook for 2 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon. Repeat with the other half and serve with your favorite sauce.
7. If you are going to freeze them. Freeze them on the baking sheet. When they are frozen, put them in a zip lock bag. Cook them the same way.

3 Tips for Time Management

By: Gloria Marie

time management, single happy and strong, divorce, divorce advice, single women

Do you ever feel that some week go by so quickly and you look back on Saturday and say, “Wow, I did not accomplish anything this week.  That happens to all of us, but, with a little planning, you can stay on track.  These are some of my 3 tips for time management.

Set a couple long term goals for yourself. Then decide on a few goals that you would like to accomplish in the next week.

When your action plan is together, complete the following sentences.

I will avoid………

I will complete……………..

To make sure I complete my task, I will……………………….

I will not……………………….

Now do the following 3 steps to plan your week:

  1. Spend 10 minutes at the beginning of the week in a “strategy session”. Pick 2 tasks this week that will get you closer to your long term goals. Write down what else you would like to accomplish this week.
  2. Buy a planner or find a weekly planner on-line. Map out each day with realistic timeframes and tasks. Try not to over schedule. You will need some flexible time during the week. Remember to also schedule some fun and recreational activities. Put a star next to the items that absolutely must be accomplished this week because of some sort of deadline.
  3. After you have planned your week, focus only on the day at hand. If you were not able to complete all your goals for the current day, evaluate whether you could schedule it later in the week or whether it is best left for another week. Remain flexible and do not be hard on yourself if you cannot accomplish everything. With practice, you will learn how to best use your time.

Refer back to the sentences you completed above when planning the following week.

Be aware of the time you spend looking at emails. Does that detract from completing your tasks?  Maybe limit checking emails to three days a day: morning, afternoon and evening.

 

 

What are You Passionate About?

By: Gloria Marie

single happy and strong, gloria pierson, gloria marie pierson, surrender to the present moment

“We may affirm absolutely that nothing great in the world
has been accomplished without passion.”
-Georg Hegel

Passion is an intense emotion compelling, enthusiasm, or desire for anything. When going through my divorce and other difficult transitions, I realized I was not passionate about anything. In order to survive emotionally, there was a time I did not allow myself to feel any strong emotion, whether passion or anger. How boring is that? We need to find our passion in life and incorporate it as part of our weekly routine. We are here to enjoy and thrive in our incredible life. What are you passionate about?

We will begin by reflecting on the following questions and then we will discuss ways to begin putting that passion into your life!

Reflect on these questions, take your time. It may take a few weeks before you can answer them. Perhaps write your answers in your journal.

1. What activity would you engage in even if you never made money doing it?
2. When you dream, what do you dream about?
3. What do you like to read about?
4. What are you good at?
5. What sparks your creativity?
6. What are 5 past life experiences that left you with a sense of fulfillment?
7. What was the best time you ever had?
8. What is your favorite part about life?
9. What activities make you feel like your heart is about to burst?
10. If you could do anything today, what would it be?

Now, write down 3 goals to drive more passion into your life. Under each goal write 5 “actions” you can take to get your closer to your goals. Next to each “action” put a time frame. Is it one week, one month or five years from now. There is not right or wrong answer. Listen to your heart for guidance.

How are you going to bring more passion into your life?

Spring Cleaning Your Closet

By: Gloria Marie

divorce, divorce women, divorce the divorce, single happy strong

Spring is a time of renewal and regrowth. A time to clean up your space to make way for new things into your life. Clear up the clutter in that closet. There is a wonderful new book out by Marie Kondo, “The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up”. Marie give some great advice for spring cleaning your closet.

This past week, I walked into my closet and looked around. It looked crowded and unorganized. There was just too much stuff in it. The energy felt old. There were so many clothes that I kept, “just in case”. Just in case I lose 10 pounds. Just in case I go on a cruise and need cruise wear from 10 years ago. Just in case the temperature in Florida drops below 32 degrees. Then there are all those sentimental clothes. The one that my deceased Mother or Grandmother bought me. Or how about the clothes that you paid a lot of money for, but, never wore.

Well, I decided it was time to move past all that and keep only what I wanted and only what I wear. I was on a weekend silent retreat with Merton scholar, James Finely, a few years ago. The retreat ended on Sunday at 11:00 am. I was going straight from the retreat center to my Mom’s home. She had recently died and I needed to begin the arduous task of clearing out her belongings. James gave me great advice. He told me to talk to my Mom through the process. Tell her, “You have moved on and now I must too and we do not need these items anymore”. It made a very difficult task easier.

Marie Kondo in her book says to look at the items in your closet and ask yourself, “Does it spark joy? Talk to your items in a similar way I did while cleaning out my Mom’s belongings. Do not keep items of guilt or items you feel you “should” keep. She suggests keeping only things that speak to you and take the plunge to discard the rest. Marie also suggests thanking the clothes for their service.

Are you ready to take the plunge and purge your closet? Why not join me! Celebrate spring.

Powerful Affirmations

By: Gloria Marie

divorce advice, divorce, divorced women, single women, single happy strong

Affirmations are positive statements that can be repeated on a regular basis. They can be written, repeated orally or both. Powerful affirmations help us control our thoughts.
James Allen in his book, “As You Thinketh”, written in 1904, states, “All that you achieve and all that you fail to achieve is the direct result of your own thoughts”.

Positive affirmations work! They can transform your life. They are simple to incorporate into your daily activities. I write down my affirmations on index cards and keep them with me all day. Or I will put them on post it notes on my mirror in the bathroom and on my desk. Put them wherever you spend time. They are constant reminders to keep thoughts positive and transforming.

Some people sing their affirmations. Music and affirmations are a great combination. It is a joyful, happy way to incorporate them into your life.

Some days I may work with 10 affirmations. Other days or weeks, I may only work with one. I will write them down and read them out loud. The more you say them, the better. Replace those fearful or negative thoughts with positive ones.
3 Steps to Begin Using Affirmations
Affirmations should be written in the present tense.
Think about what you would like to change or improve in your life.
Write them on index cards or post it notes and read aloud daily.
Some examples of affirmations:
I trust the process of life.
I am healing.
I am now releasing all fears.
I am strong.
I am lovable.
I am grateful for all the gifts this day will bring.
I am creative and the Universe supports me.

Change your thoughts, change your life. Repeat your affirmations over and over and over. Create some wonderful powerful affirmations TODAY!

What affirmations did you create?

Between the Dark and the Daylight

By: Gloria Marie

motivational books, divorce advice, divorce women, single women

Joan Chittister’s new book, “Between the Dark and the Daylight: Embracing the Contradictions of Life” is filled with insight and wisdom. It is a guide to help our soul confront those fears, questions, and problems that haunt us in the middle of the night. This book provides a framework for us to better understand ourselves and to better understand our relationship with God.

She writes about many topics that we deal with in our busy, stressed out world. Each chapter introduces a new topic. Some examples are: The Mirage of Security, The Success of Failure, The Liberation in Loss and The Loneliness of Love. She writes about how each challenge is an opportunity for growth. By going inward to the depth of our spirit we can find the light in the darkness.

This book provides life changing awareness to help navigate through life’s disappointments, losses, and confusions. There is a lot of great advice. It takes the centuries old spiritual wisdom and applies them to our modern world.

This is a book I will reread many times. It is a beautifully written treasure that will probably become a spiritual classic.

Some of my favorite quotes:

“Without risk we live in a small world of small dreams and lost possibilities.”

“Growth is the boundary between the darkness of unknowing and the light of new wisdom, new insight, new vision of who and what we ourselves have become.”

“Loss frees us to begin again, to be seen differently, to tap into something inside of ourselves that even we were never really sure was there.”

I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review.

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Believe in Miracles

By: Gloria Marie

single happy strong, divorce, divorced women, single women, divorce advice

My son was flying home for spring break and he missed his plane. Something about the bus from the parking lot taking over 20 minutes. No problem, I told him, go the ticket counter and get booked on a later flight. He called me back about 15 minutes later and said his particular discounted fare did not allow you to re-book, you simple lost the value of the ticket. This was not a great way to start spring break. I felt helpless, but, I do believe in miracles.

He said he would begin the 12 hour drive home. I asked him to just wait and let me think of alternatives. I found a flight later that day on another airline that was reasonably priced. However, I felt I needed to detach from the drama, sit quietly, say a prayer and decide the best course of action to take.

I decided to call Delta and see if they would change the flight. I left a message and received a call back about 30 minutes later. During the time I waited for the return call, I prayed and sent love and light to this situation. When the agent called me back, instead of being mad or angry, I sent love and light to her. You can probably guess the ending. This very kind agent re-booked my son on a later flight that day. It was the only one available the rest of that day, but, that was all we needed. I believe that was a miracle.
Next time you have a situation to deal with, try to do following:
1. Take five deep breathes to release any stress.
2. Have your thoughts remain positive and visualize a positive outcome.
3. Say a prayer. Send lots of love and light to the situation and especially to any other person involved.
4. Accept with gratitude whatever the outcome is. There is Divine Order in life.

Have you had a miracle in your life? Believe in miracles.

Full of Fear

By: Gloria Marie

divorce advice, fear, divorce women, single women, divorce

My son was recently home on spring break. He loves watching all sorts of sports and on this one particular day he was watching a soccer match on television. I began to make lunch for us and suddenly I felt full of fear and stressed. Ignoring my own advice, I kept telling myself that it was nothing. What could I be stressed about? My son was home and it was wonderful for us to be together.

After a few more minutes, I realized that the soccer game on the television was really annoying me. It made no sense. We ate our lunch and after lunch, I decided I needed some quiet time to “be” with my feelings of fear. What was it about the soccer game that I was reacting to?

After a few minutes, it dawned on me. The light bulb went off in my head. Several summers ago, I was not working and money was really tight. We were living in Florida and it was a very HOT summer. Because money was tight, I kept the air conditioner on about 80 degrees, really not comfortable. That summer was difficult for many reasons. It was also the summer of the world championship for soccer. Whenever my son was not working, he was watching soccer.

Fast track to this spring break, when he was watching soccer, my mind and my body reverted back to that challenging summer several years ago. It was a relief when I figured it out. It reminded me of the behavior modification work of B.F. Skinner and the rats that I learned about in college. However, I am not a rat and I can change the way I react.

I vowed to change that pattern. The past was over and we now have our air conditioning on a very comfortable level and life is really good!

A Time for Rebirth

By: Gloria Marie

Today is Easter Sunday and in the Christian tradition, a time of rebirth. Even if you do not celebrate Easter, let’s look at this time for rebirth of YOU! What have you outgrown in your life and what would you like to re-do or give “birth” to?

I grew up in a Catholic household and we celebrated all the religious holidays. My Dad loved Easter. He had a tradition of having an Easter egg hunt for my sister, brother and I. He would hide chocolate eggs and plastic eggs filled with dollar bills. When my own sons were born, he kept up the tradition with them. After his death, I kept it up: going to the bank the week before Easter to get the dollar bills for the plastic eggs. This was a tradition in our family.

Today start a new tradition: a new rebirth for YOU! First look at your physical body. Is it time to change the color or style of your hair? How about your makeup? Are you wearing the same type of makeup for the past several years? How about your clothes? Are you buying the same boring styles?

Maybe it is time to update and change to a more elegant, chic you. Take a critical look at yourself and update one of those areas. We continually grow and sometimes it is good to stop and evaluate what we have “outgrown” in our lives.

Next, analyze what commitments you have? Are they still relevant in your life? Or is it time to give birth to new ideas and new commitments? What can you let go of in order to bring something different and exciting into your life?

My suggestion, is not ask others for advice, but, to listen to your own heart on the changes you want to make.

Happy Easter and Happy Re-Birth!

Self Help Books for April

By: Gloria Marie

self help books, divorce advice, divorce, single women, single happy and strong.

 

Spring is here, a time for renewal.  This is a great time to read some new inspirational books.  I have picked out three to recommend this month.  One of them, I actually reread again.  “As A Man Thinkekth”, I never get tired of the wise words of James Allen.  Try these self books for April.

As You Think”

By James Allen

 The original classic was written in 1904. It reveals to us that the keys to success are within our own minds, it show us how to use these keys to unlock the greatest fulfillment we can imagine. “As You Think” is a simple yet powerful reminder that “all we achieve and all that we fail to achieve is the direct result of our own thoughts.  We are the master of our desires.

“How to Survive the Loss of a Love”

By Harold Bloomfield, Melba Colgrove, and Peter McWilliams

 One of the most directly helpful books on the subject of loss ever written, the first edition of this comforting and inspiring book, published in 1976, sold nearly two million copies. This completely revised and expanded edition encompasses not only the medical and psychological advances in the treatment of loss, but also the authors’ own experiences.  This is a handbook of inspiration, ideas, poems and encouragement.  The authors state, “This is a book to be used not just read.”

 

“The Law of Divine Compensation: On Work, Money and Miracles”

By Marianne Williamson

In The Law of Divine Compensation, she reveals the spiritual principles that help us overcome financial stress and unleash the divine power of abundance. A guru to anyone interested in spirituality, Williamson’s words ring with power and truth as she assures us that, with faith in God’s promise of prosperity for all, we need never fear the future.  This book has suggested activities, prayers, and meditations.

Happy Spring!  What are some of your favorite self-help books?

 

single happy and strong, divorce, divorce advice, single women, self help books