Monday, April 12, 2010

Spring Cleaning

Valerie Steimle

Spring has officially arrived which means many people turn their focus to spring cleaning. All the clutter that builds up over the last year with unnecessary items inside your home and around the yard need to be sent to the trash can or given away to someone in need. Reorganizing closets can give you more space than you realize. Deep cleaning all the dirt off the walls and floors will help everyone in your house feel better. Besides removing dirt and unwanted items from your home there are other spring cleaning jobs which need to be considered.

Consider cleaning your life habits. A reevaluation of how you spend your time and what you are doing for most of the day can help you get back on track in what is really important in your life. Time wasters and addictions can be tossed out of your life as life is too short to miss out on the good stuff of spending time with family and friends. Relationships can be developed which are much more fulfilling than time spent with electronic machines.

Another aspect of spring cleaning you might not have considered is within your own person. As most health care providers will tell you, your body is a temple and should be a priority in the utmost care. Cleaning your system with detoxification of lots of water and wholesome foods can make a big difference in how you feel every day. According to Psychology Today, “detoxification is not for everyone (pregnant women and people with serious medical conditions) but for those who are able to improve their diet with more clean liquid intake and unprocessed foods such as brown rice, fresh fruits and vegetables, can thoroughly clean out your system.” Bodies need to be cleaned inside as well as out, as waste is built up inside and can cause a body to not function properly.

Election time will be arriving soon and we have the task of electing the right person to do the right job. Spring cleaning can be applied to this task as well. We need to remove all the dirt and unwanted items from all areas of the state and country to get our government running back on track again. Take a good look at where the country is headed and realize that our future is in our own hands. We need to carefully consider all candidates and make the right choice as we want to retain our liberties living in this free land.

Spring cleaning is a useful task in all aspects of our life. By cleaning out our homes, our lives, our bodies and our government, we can improve the quality of our life ten-fold.

Olympian Courage

Valerie Steimle

As the Olympics came to a close, I have reflected on the example of one athlete. The courage of Joanie Rochette from Quebec , Canada was amazing. Two days before Joanie was to compete in the woman’s figure skating, her mother (Theresa Rochette-age 55) had a massive heart attack and passed away after arriving in Vancouver to watch her daughter perform.

Almost anyone experiencing tragedy like that would have pulled out of the competition. In such a competitive sport, each participant has to have full body and mind concentration to do well. Joanie Rochette did above and beyond what any 24 year-old figure skating athlete would have done under the circumstances. She stepped out on the ice with grace and great composure and skated her best performances to win the bronze medal taking third place behind two excellent skaters from South Korea and Japan . Canada hadn’t won any medals for women’s singles skating since Elizabeth Manley won the silver in Calgary in 1988.

It was an amazing experience to watch Joanie, knowing what her heart was feeling for the death of her mother, as she performed her skating routines. She carried on with great courage and became an Olympic favorite because of her remarkable character. How many of us would be able carry on so well after losing a loved one so close to us? She was even given the distinguished honor of carrying her country’s flag in the closing exercises on Sunday night. She didn’t think she deserved the honor because her performance on ice was awarded third place but after talking with many of her own country’s athletes she changed her mind. They explained to her how her determination and character had greatly helped them get through their own performances and she was absolutely the right person to carry their flag.

It is so refreshing to see how the life of one athlete could have such a positive affect on so many people. We all have trials to overcome but how many of us would continue on as Joanie did? We have become a world of only thinking of ourselves. We think what is best for us instead of what would be best for everyone around us. Joanie could have walked away from the competition and we would have all understood why but she chose the better path to complete what she started.

As Robert Frost so eloquently wrote in his poem The Road Not Taken, “I took the one less traveled by and that made all the difference”. Joanie Rochette took the road less traveled by. She did her best and that made all the difference.