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HeartFull Blog‚Äč

5 Reasons to Smile

An ongoing series of 

happy and informative stuff in writing

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Don't just LOOK youthful and vibrant, BE youthful and vibrant

Why do we put so much pressure on ourselves as we age?

The day I turned 50, I thought "Oh Boy! I guess it's time to change every aspect of my life now so I can look grown up and act approprietly as a 50 year old."I thought I had to fit into some sort of norm, a stereotype, I guess.  I immediately got to it!  I started changing how I lifted things, paid attention to my gait when walking, kept my back as straight as possible. I started exercising with rubber  bands and ate hard boiled eggs and oatmeal.  You know, things 50 year old do!  I stopped buying coffee everyday and just made a pot at home with fancy syrup and cream.  Enjoying every drop in a mug that says "50 and Fabulous!"I was okay with all these changes.  In fact, I got excited about  being 50. I had the ability to create a brand new avatar. The avatar I wanted to become.  What I had not known at the time was that I was NOT in charge of the changes.  Nope, Creator had the final word.  I will tell you it's all fun and games until your back goes out.  Holy smokes can that put a damper on things.  Everything stopped! Let me step back a few months to where I found out I had 3 very damaged discs in my back and I was going to have to make some serious changes.  I agreed with the doctors and set out to do just that.  What I didn't realize is that I would have to give up something that I could not even fathom losing.  I had to give up something that I felt truly summed up my character and playful attitude.  Let me explain.  I walked into my physio appointment ready to make big changes. New exercises, new posture, new habits.  Yes! Let's do this!  My doctor looked at me with pain in his eyes and said "The Converse have to go.  Throw them out today."What??? No!!!! Not my Chucks!  I'd been wearing those shoes(not THOSE particular ones) but many, many pairs for over 35 years plus.  I felt a pang of sadness and frankly, some anger as he raised his eyebrows and said "It's time."  My dilemma was not a fashion sense problem.  It was more like losing a piece of my identity. My carefree attitude and hilarious sense of humor wouldn't be able to remain if I wasn't wearing my Chucks.  If you don't know much about Converse sneakers, I will update you. They are an incredibly flat shoe with little support. You can get hightops or low ones and there are hundreds of colors. Not one pair I had owned in all my years had any type of arch support.  Here's what Wikipedia says *Converse is an American shoe company that designs, distributes, and licenses sneakers, skating shoes, lifestyle brand footwear, apparel, and accessories. Founded in 1908, it has been a subsidiary of Nike, Inc. since 2003. During World War II, Converse shifted its manufacturing to make footwear for the military. My doctor was VERY concerned that if I kept wearing these shoes, things would progressively get worse.  Well, I had to make a decision right then and there!  I would ditch the Chucks to save my back.  Nevermind that I longboarded with my kids in them, ran, jumped and played in those damned shoes! I even wore them as a nurse for 16 years.  I had to disconnect these things from the shoe.  It really wasn't the shoe that made me vibrant and energetic.  I already was (am) vibrant and energetic!  Converse or not.   Fast forward to today.  I bought some new runners with arches and flexibility and laces that do up nice and snug at the ankle.  I am happy to say that my gait is better, my knees feel supported, my posture is better and my back is feeling stronger than ever.  I won't be getting surgery or replacing discs at this time.  I think the proof is in the pudding.  I needed good shoes but I had no idea how much I did.  It was obvious that this was the remedy for me.  I will tell you that those Converse sat in my truck for a month.  All 4 pairs. The turquoise ones, the orange ones, the hightops and the low tops.  I did a little goodbye ceremoney for those shoes as I handed the bag to the lady at the thrift store.  I cry a little thinking that my youth went with those shoes.  It didn't.  I still feel as vibrant and youthful as I did in those shoes.  The difference is that now, I know it's not the's me.  I am as young as I want to be.  I feel great as I continue to heal.  Maybe, I will go out and get another longboard and try it with these shoes on.  I am definately not pretending to feel spry, I am actually spry.  It was a big deal to let go of my Chucks but I am all the better for it.  I may own another pair in the future but they won't be my daily's, more like a "special occasion shoe".  What keeps you feeling vibrant and youthful?  Let me know.  Have a wonderful week.  Shannon 

Our Latest Blog Entry

06 May, 2022

I thought I'd share my life so maybe we can relate better and have a connection.   I'd like to present this info in a little different way though. We all have a story. Here's mine. 

Legend: F means fun, N means not so fun

F:  1970, born to wonderful parents. Have 1 brother.

N:  moved away to the cold north with no winter clothes (not prepared for it).

F: riding dirt bikes, snowmobiles, sucker fishing, riding horses. 

N:  my favorite nana and grandpa died in the same month. My dad was never the same.

F:  one day, my dad won the lottery! Got a new vcr and microwave (it was 1984 so these things were pretty miraculous).

N:  developed anxiety and depression, eating disorders and a bit of mania. Age 15

F:  created my first art and clothing for sale.

N:  abused by a few dudes

F:  moved away to become an adult. Age 18

N:  starved, lived with many people, drank myself into oblivion.

F:  married at 25, won a million dollars on a scratch and win, spent 5 weeks in New Zealand, had my boys, had a wonderful ceramic studio. 

N: tumor, almost died, chose alternative(not conventional care) husband cheated on me, divorce. Opened a plenty of fish accountūüėĀ

F: met my new beautiful husband, gained 2 children and a new family. Graduated as a care aide (top of class).

N:  2 tumors, surgery and alternative care. No chemo or radiation. 

F: Travelled to Cambodia & Vietnam with my in laws. Angkor Wat and Thom (life altering). 

N:  Dave's heart gave up but he didn't and survived.

F:  created the world's greatest hotdogs stands with my man.

N:  tumor, (contained so much testosterone that my body was turning from female to male)this absolutely devastated me, started having massive anxiety and panic attacks

F:  found a doctor that didn't give up on me. Found the tumor. Removed it. Started using cannabis tincture. My body immediately went back to female.

N:  owned property that had squatters. Lots of court stuff. Eventually kicked them out.

F:  moved to the mountains and raised chickens, saw ghosts and orbs (I think we lived on a burial ground, I loved it).

N: 6ft of snow and 8 months of winter.

F:  saw my dad for the last time. Best visit ever. He died shortly after this.

N:  Dave lost his right leg to type 1 diabetes 

F:  Dave  bought my Harley sportster while he was in the  hospital.

N: Dave taught me to ride on a dirt road hill. I can now ride on any surface.

F:  we bought a fifth wheel and now have no fixed address. We live where we log.

N:  the RV shitter always needs emptying 

F:  I can write anywhere

N:  I can never find a laundromat 

F:  eggs today are $4.99 a dozen! Cheap! (Was paying $7.99 last week).

N: Just blew the breaker again by plugging in the coffee maker. Shit!

F:  A bunny is staring at me from the blackberry bush

So, that's my story and I'm stickin' to it. Have a great day!


Communication is key

April 8, 2022

In the past 52 years, I've had many specialists and doctors come and go in my life.  All of them have been extremely important in my journey and this blog is in no way an opinion of their ability as professional doctors. This is just an observation of how doctors communicate news with their patients. I've noticed that depending on who is sharing information with me about a test result, every doctor, nurse or caregiver brings their own knowledge (as well as emotion) into the diagnosis. The varied language that we hear and see to convey a condition, is dependent on the attitude of the doctor at that moment.  The words spoken in those moments starts creating an immediate negative or positive mindset in ourselves. It starts us on a positive path towards healing or simply living in the negative pain body.  An example of this just happened to me last week and it really got me thinking.  I didn't realize that the words my GP used about my diagnosis would be so different from (and challenged by) another doctor. It was kind of fantastic.  Let me explain.  I walked into my first physiotherapy appointment in ages. This was to be my second opinion, at my GPs nudging. I have a great doctor who respects my opinion as well as the opinion of others. I sat down and started answering questions.   I found it very peculiar that this new doctor had not received my x-rays. He basically shrugged them off. He seemed nice, though. Calm, cool. He did some interesting tests on my reflexes and posture. After about 10 minutes his diagnosis was pretty clear.  He said "I agree you have this problem but it's not a death sentence.  You've got wear and tear, normal aging stuff."  I sat beaming. I felt better immediately. I was so excited to hear these new positive words. Just a few days before, my wonderful family doctor (I honestly think she's great)gave me the news but used words like disease and degenerative.  These words kind of hurt. Disease. Degenerative.  She never meant for them to hurt but they sent me spiraling for a few days. Because she is a true professional, we discussed treatment options, lifestyle changes and alternatives to pain medicines.  I was happy about the outcome. The common denominator with these two fine doctors is that despite the actual diagnosis, they both took enough time to describe my issue(in terms they were most comfortable with)and give me fantastic tools and resources to aid in my healing. Win/ win. Both outcomes work for me. 

April 1, 2022

A Summary of The Science of Getting Rich by Wallace Wattles

This is my 3rd time reading this incredible book. Not only is it practical but it also enhances every area of your life with skill building, common sense applications and creates a more positive mindset. I'm never disappointed after reading this little book. There are so many new nuggets of wisdom to learn from. I highly recommend it. This quote from the book sums it up well. 

"There is a thinking stuff from which all things are made and which in its original state permeates, penetrates and fills the intra spaces of the universe. A thought in this substance produces the thing that is imaged by the thought. Man can form things in his thought and by impressing his thought upon formless substance,  can cause the thing he thinks about to be created" Wallace Wattles 1910 

March 25th, 2022

I am obsessed with rocks!

Anybody else continuously tripping on a walk?

I still haven't decided if this is my choice of  rock tumbler. I'm  currently looking into a couple of brands.  National Geographic is one.  They have a kit that c‚Äčomes with everything I need to get started and looks pretty straightforward but after looking at other products, I need more time to decide. I'm starting to think many people are like me and have become totally obsessed with looking down during  walks, usually filling pockets with 100 little potential gems. This past year I've been searching for  a professional style of tumbler. One that holds more than 1/2 cup of rocks. The size of rocks I'm interested in are baby finger nail size. Pretty tiny. To use for wire jewelry and maybe resin stuff.  I'm going to do an honest review  of the unit and the accessories for everyone once I decide.  If you've used a particular tumbler that you like, let me know the details.  

March 12, 2022


Lately, I've been dreaming of walking on a beach, feeling the sand beneath my feet.  Whether it's a little trip to the lake or a 2 week excursion to a deserted island, nothing feels better than a vacation.  After the last 2 years, we are ready. Dave and I have had the pleasure of traveling to a few of the most unbelievable places on earth. In 2014, we spent 2 glorious weeks traveling around Vietnam and Cambodia,  seeing incredible sights like Angkor Wat and Angkor Thom. Our favorite 3 day trip was living onboard a beautiful boat in HaLong Bay. We ate some of the most delicious local foods prepared by onboard chefs. It was a highlight of our trip to Vietnam. We are currently planning our next trip and think Ecuador will be the winner. I'll keep you in the loop. Where would you go on your next vacation?

Quick meditation to remove guilt

February 22, 2022



Hey everyone! Welcome to my site. I'm so happy to have you in the space.  With love in my heart, I'd like to offer you my favorite medi‚Äčtation,  by A‚Äčaron Abke, to get things rolling. Listen to the water, remove guilt. Take time out everyday to sit with yourself. I recommend headphones.