Tag Archives: inspiration

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WEIGHT LOSS AFTER LOSS

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Losing a loved one knocks you down,and then you get back up and the memories knock you over again. It is a never-ending cycle, this grief stuff. I guess I just need to navigate my way around the emotional grenades and go on, and we must go on. 

Losing weight after losing a loved one, this is what is on my mind at the moment. Nothing knocked me down, nothing until I lost my Mother. I made it to my lowest weight on this journey, 159 lbs and I did it through a move from LA to San Francisco, my husband’s job loss and a move back to LA. I kept going through all of those life changes, and life did not break me and I never gained a pound. I kept losing and I am proud to say I did it, until the last month.

Now life after losing my Mother left me with a few pounds of extra weight. I admit I fell of the wagon. That’s the thing about wagons, they keep going, you just have to catch up and jump back on. I am committing to my healthy lifestyle and workouts and goals, it is not easy now. Our new kitchen is barely set up but I can do this. It starts today, I know how to do this and I know how to get to where I am going. I am back on the wagon and on the road to all of my goals. I will lose the 10 lbs I gained and get to my goals.

I am about to run to the grocery store, my hubby James is working and we need something healthy to eat. I am going to wear my runners belt and run there even with this heat and humidity. I plan on making a schedule soon, and tomorrow I have an interview to work in a local restaurant for some extra cash for my goals and our new life. I will post my workout/running/yoga schedule once I begin my job and new routine. No more slacking off. 

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I would love to know how you kept working towards your goals through a life crisis. What tips do you follow to keep at it? We are all here to inspire each other.

So much love and Light

Rose

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END OF A CRISIS

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Good afternoon to all, I am still on west coast time, but I am adjusting. For those of you who follow my Facebook page you know my husband James and I just made the trek from Los Angeles to Houston, Texas. This was not an east decision, but we both decided the opportunity for his career was too good to pass up. Here I am again in yet another transition, and this one was particularly tough because as we were moving my Mother passed away.  A lot to deal with in such a short time. For us, ever since we left Los Angeles in 2014 for San Francisco everything has been a bit more challenging, but we got through our crisis. The hardest thing we faced was a sudden loss of a loved one, it is one of those things you feel you may never recover from. Below is a story about my Mother Shirley, she was truly a beautiful soul and unique character. She is the love of my life.

http://lebomag.com/what-my-mother-gave-me/

I have learned many lessons about life and loss, and how time is so precious. I promise to see all family, both of our families from here on out. My fear of flying I will deal with, there are loved ones to see. I fly home Friday for a memorial dinner in honor of my Mother.

I also wish my dear Mother in Law Julie a very Happy Birthday. I have the best in-laws and I cannot wait to see them soon, even if it means bringing them to us in Texas. As I work on my goals and plans it is so very important to spend time with loved ones, family and friends. I will keep in touch better going forward. 

In the time since 2014, no matter how challenging things got, I never gained a pound. I stayed on my goals and accomplished a lot of new goals with my writing and my weight loss and fitness goals. I was on it, until the last few weeks. I fell off program for a few weeks, and life and loss showed me how incredibly human I am. I know I have put on a few pounds, and as soon as the movers arrive with our stuff and my scale I will post exactly how much weight I have gained. My blankets I collected are being delivered at the end of June. I plan on looking for more charities to assist in my new home.

So here I am,  A die-hard Californian in Texas and embarking on day one today. No more treating my body like it is a trash can, back to honoring this body as the temple it is. It is the home where my soul dwells and I will treat it with the respect it deserves.

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I will keep this short and sweet, as I begin anew in another new home. I can say today I have met two new friends, and learned a lot about my new community. I plan on posting what I plan to do as I move forward, including diet and my benderfitness workouts. I also plan on starting a Youtube channel as I work towards my goals in my new home. I am very proud to say I finally got my book Camellia in Snow into the famous Book Soup on the iconic Sunset Strip, so LA I will be returning. This was a goosebumps moment indeed.

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For now, hello Texas I embrace you with an open heart and open mind. Thank you for this chance to begin anew. I found my first Texas tree, and how unique is it? It looks like an open hand reaching out for the heavens. I plan on treating my life with the same reverence, and making it my mission to help people more than ever.18838877_10155246030878617_1431367025370470149_n

 

 

 

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3 BOOKS THAT MAKE YOU THINK

As I sit here typing on this keyboard there are a million things for me to do, a million and one to get done in a little time. All I wish to do after my run is to sit outdoors with a book that leaves me feeling better about life and the world around me. A book that makes me think and feel deeply.

Here is a list of the top 3 books that make me think, books I often go to over and over again. Some of these books may be inspiring in a different way, maybe motivating you to do more for someone else or to volunteer with seniors. These books make us reflect about the beauty of being alive and the consequences of our actions, and whether or not we use our time to give back to those who need it most. Life is about the connections we make. These are 3 of my very favorite reads. I hope you like them as well.

MATTIE J.T. STEPANEK

Reflections of a Peacemaker

“I want to be a poet, a peacemaker and a philosopher who played.”

https://www.amazon.com/Reflections-Peacemaker-Portrait-Through-Heartsongs/dp/0740756257/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1494620124&sr=8-1&keywords=reflections+of+a+peacemaker

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Before I ever embarked on my poetry writing journey I devoured Mattie’s books. Mattie was so wise beyond his years. His optimism for life was contagious, he knew the disease he was fighting was terminal but he always showed a reverence for life and living. All he wanted was to spread peace, kindness and compassion to all, He was an angel in human form. I recommend all of his books, but you can start with this collection of his profound poetry. It will make you think, it will make you cry, it will remind you how beautiful it is to just be alive, to hug your favorite dog and share laughter and love with those around you. He will teach you how to be a peacemaker.

I write about anything that touches the essence of my existence. What I witness, what I feel, what I think, what I fear, what I treasure. I write about life, which is our greatest gift.” –Mattie Stepanek, 1990-2004

 

MANY THINGS TO TELL YOU

Natural poetry by people living in nursing homes.

Thomas E. Heinzen Ph.D.

https://www.amazon.com/Many-Things-Tell-You-Collection/dp/1885778147/ref=sr_1_7?ie=UTF8&qid=1494619954&sr=8-7&keywords=many+things+to+tell+you

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This book I came across while browsing a book store in Astoria, Queens. It was then I first got an opportunity to publish my own work by the publisher that published this book; a book that will totally make you think and cry. It is natural poetry from elderly people living in nursing homes. Thomas E. Heinzen goes into nursing homes and takes down the poetry, the feelings, the remembrances of those living in nursing homes. A profound read. Make sure to have a box of tissues nearby.

 

THE RED LETTER DIARY

Reclaiming a life through the pages of a Lost Journal.

Lily Koppel

https://www.amazon.com/Red-Leather-Diary-Reclaiming-Through/dp/0061256781/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1494620609&sr=8-2&keywords=lily+koppel

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Lily Koppel found an old diary in a steamer trunk in a dumpster in New York City, what follows is a fascinating tale of a young woman named Florence Wolfson and her diary from 1929 to 1934. The diary was reunited with its author in 2003 and it gave an aging woman a new lease on life and living in the twilight of her years. A must read. Everybody has a story, and this is one to definitely add to your reading list.

 

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REINVENTING YOURSELF

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One hundred year old trees still recycle themselves and come out with new flowers. Recycle yourself. Know that nature gives you the clues to living.”

Tao Porchon-Lynch

 

Reinvention, I feel like I have been mastering the art of reinvention as of the last few years. Like Tao Porchon-Lynch I often look to the trees for wisdom and inspiration. They are our pillars of wisdom, they reinvent themselves but always grow more beautiful with each passing bloom. I try to always look up to them, they are my role models. I am always in the process of shedding my leaves and patiently waiting for my blossoms to emerge. 

I am not going to sugar coat it, the last two years have been challenging to say the least. Soon I will write about the crisis I was in and what is to come in the second half of 2017. My Mother has been ill in ICU in Cleveland, Ohio but she improves a little each day. I am so grateful to all my friends for keeping her in their prayers. If she can get through, I can conquer the world. This is my Mother below, at 15 in the black bathing suit. What a beauty.

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I am most proud that as a weight loss blogger going through a challenging few years that I kept all my weight off despite the changes, the plateaus, and the hard moments that came my way. A move to San Francisco from West Hollywood, a move back to West Hollywood was just a a portion of our hardships. One could just throw in the towel and I admit there were a few times that I contemplated quitting. A good friend talked me out of it, so here I am moving forward.

My weight is still holding strong at 159 lbs and I am back counting my Weight Watchers points, and eating clean most of the time. The 80/20 rule works for me, I eat clean and leave a little wiggle room for special treats. I use Weight Watchers to keep my portions in control and to keep me from obsessing over good and bad food. It is food and I am grateful for it, and I am learning balance as I lose weight and get fit and strong.

Speaking of fitness, I did slack off there a little. I fell and injured my knee and my shoulder has been injured. Tomorrow I am starting a Melissa Bender 30 day Challenge and I plan to work on my running. I hope to be able to run to the Santa Monica Pier from my West Hollywood Home in the end of the month. I can do it and so can you. Join me on my quest to be more fit and strong and to finally get to my elusive goal weight.

http://www.benderfitness.com/2014/05/original-30-day-workout-challenge.html

Love and Light

Rose

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WEIGH IN DAY

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Good Morning to all, and what a beautiful Monday it is here in West Hollywood. I am off today and tomorrow, wrapping up my days of cat sitting two beautiful Lilac Siamese. Noodles and Peaches are my other Siamese loves, and my cats have been missing me so it will be time to go home. 

It is weigh in day and I am so happy I stayed the same at 159 lbs, I skipped the last few weeks. My scale broke, and I got frustrated with things. I am still 24 lbs to goal, and with everything going on in my life I admit to having just a few cheat days. Friday night I ate a huge tuna sub from subway, and I definitely felt ill the day after. It made me realize that my eating plan is not just about weight and appearance. It is about how I feel, my health and well-being. I had heartburn for the first time in a very long time, and I didn’t even recognize the symptoms. If you can see from the graph above I have plateaued again since February, but that is ok, No  weight gains is great for me.

I decided on Sunday to get back on track, still counting my points but going back to an anti-inflammation diet and every Monday I can deviate just a little. That way I am eating not to lose weight only, but to continue to feel good and energetic. Mondays will be the only day I consume things like flour. I believe in this type of program but I also know it is good to allow treats and deviations, just not all the time.

Here is a link to a good list of food for this type of eating from Melissa Bender Fitness.  http://www.benderfitness.com/2017/01/anti-inflammatory-diet-grocery-list.html

Today I am reveling in the fact the scale stayed the same. I feel good, and I will not be deviating this day because I am getting back on track. Next Monday will be my semi cheat day. Today it is all non processed foods with lots of produce.

My knee is healing and I feel my shoulder is too, so soon I will hit the pavement running again and start my work out schedule. I decided to rest so I would not be down for the count for longer than need be. I listened to my body even though I wanted to ignore it, and I am feeling so much better now. I have weaned myself off any pain pills for my knee too, I do not need them anymore and they made me feel awful. The last few weeks I have been walking but that is it. It is hard to slow down but I am healing.

That is all for today. I am going to go down to the pool and take a dip, or if it is too cold go in the jacuzzi.  I am celebrating that the scale stayed the same, it will be much easier now to get back on track.

It’s a lifestyle not a diet. Love and Light to all.

Rose

 

WEIGH IN MONDAY

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Happy Monday to all. Today is Weigh in Monday and I decided to skip my weigh in, and weight til next Monday. Notice the spelling of wait? I need to step away from the scale, scale back from the stress of the numbers. I had a really rough week, and there are some extra stresses at the moment in my life, and I am no stranger to chaos, stress and change. How I will handle these changes will be determined in the weeks to come, but today I am breathing and just taking one moment at a time. That is all you can do anyway.

Last week I went to the ER, fell and injured my knee days later, and had a personal crisis put upon my plate. I did not track my food, I really just lost interest in logging, but I caught myself and today I begin anew, and next week I will jump back on the scale with renewed vigor no matter what the outcome is. One of the keys to losing weight is staying consistent even when life throws you lemons. Take those lemons, make lemon bars and share with others. Kindness to others always makes you feel better when you are down.

I also had a lot of positives happen this week too. I got my hair done and I am so happy with it.

My next story I pitched for Mt Lebanon Magazine was accepted. Here is the link to the first essay they published about me and Melissa from Melissa Bender Fitness. (http://lebomag.com/a-newfound-friendship/) I sent off more submissions to other magazines and websites in regards to my writing, my poetry, and my weight loss story. My book Camellia in Snow, here is the link,  (https://www.amazon.com/Camellia-Snow-Rose-Bruno-Bailey/dp/1515347141/ref=cm_cr_arp_d_product_top?ie=UTF8 )  will be at Books Soup and Vroman’s in May.

Every day is an opportunity for success, even if the success is just a tiny glimpse of success that is to come. Keep dreaming no matter what is going on around you.

Now I wait and look for more places to write for and to submit. If I fall and tumble, I will pick myself off, dust my ego and keep moving forward no matter how slow. When I am down I will write, and when I am up I will run. No matter what life throws at me, I will channel it into something positive. I don’t know where I am going, but I know I am a go getter.

Namaste’ 

Love and Light

Rose

 

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CORRIDORS OF LIFE

Good Morning to all, it is Friday and I plan on running today. On my playlist is a song from the group Electric Light Orchestra titled I’m Alive. Each day we awaken is such a gift. If you forget that, maybe you should take a trip to your local emergency room. Nothing puts your life, your personal strife in perspective then spending six hours in the emergency room. I went to the ER this week, and this post is about my experience within those four walls of sickness, healing, anxiety, grief and compassion. My experience left me with gratitude to the Healers, the Doctors, the Nurses, the volunteers, and everyone in health care who chose such a selfless career. My ears could not tune out the agony of pain from the lady across the hall, her young sons by her side trying to console her; the healers trying without success to just make her feel more comfortable. The cries out to her lord were so intense I forgot my own reasons for being there. 

My reason for being there does not matter. My health is fine, my numbers were perfect. I was one of the lucky who got to leave. My husband James and I mused as we were walking through the hallways looking for the exit, that the hallway felt like a maze leading to the escape route back to where life makes sense. Trees and a cool breeze would await us on the other side. Cars, streetlights, people smiling; real life or the reality we all like to live in. What goes on within hospitals is very foreign to many of us, almost like a world within a world. It takes special types of humans to live and work in that center of sickness and healing, and to them I send my gratitude. We walked through the automatic doors hand in hand as if we had a renewed lease on living, never forgetting those who we left behind. Kindness and empathy for others should always be a given.

In yoga we often make an intention in the beginning of the practice, and we may offer up well wishes and healing thoughts for someone we know; for someone who is struggling. I offer this to the lady in the emergency room and her two children who stood lovingly by her side. They do not know me, but I know them. I was just on the other side of the curtain,veiled yet not blind to her suffering. Empathy for the sick and gratitude to the healers.

Namaste’  

Love and Light

Rose

 

 

 

 

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NOT A NUMBER

 

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What is a number? Are we defined by numbers? Think about it, how many times a day does someone ask for your bank number, your credit number, your age, weight and phone number? Do we have names or numbers? I admit sometimes I wonder if people think differently about me after I share with them my age number. I admit to being so excited about my weight loss and the fact I finally weigh in the 150’s. Does that mean I am different than what I once was? There is a fine line between past and present, here and then. At the end I choose to be Rose. Not better but not worse, just the same me who is just so grateful to see yet another day. I’m just getting stronger and healthier. I will never lose sight of any of my dreams and goals just because society has deemed me a number. Names not numbers.

Rose Bruno Bailey

 

Happy Monday to all. Monday is my Saturday, since I am off Mondays and Tuesdays. It is also my weigh in day, and the day I allow a little wiggle room into my healthy eating plan after I jump on the scale. Today my treat of choice is Russian Chocolate Coffee Cake from Canter’s Deli in Los Angeles. They bake everything homemade and the Russian Chocolate Coffee Cake is my favorite. Of course with some delicious cinnamon coffee from Dunkin Donuts my day is dusted with sugar and spice and everything that is nice about the simpler moments of life. A little quiet time to enjoy my treat, and retreat into the cavern of my mind and do a little writing. Even the most extroverted person needs a bit of solace found in silence.

Weigh in day, my updates have been the same for over a month. It seems my body has decided 159 feels good, 159 feels strong. My body is telling me to get off the scale and focus on fitness; work on your running, flexibility and yoga practice and I will get back to you when I am good and ready. That is the message I am getting from my body after one month of stepping on a scale that is not cooperating. I have finally deciphered the translation in the numbers, get off the scale and get moving.  YOU ARE NOT THIS NUMBER. 

Message heard loud and clear. I am not a number. I am still going to pay attention to the scale, because even in maintaining weight loss it is good to know where you stand; just don’t stand on the scale more than once a week. Jump on, mentally record where you are and get moving. This week I am back to focusing on my fitness now that my toe is on the mend. I have also found a way to do my Yoga Sun Salutations without injuring my rotator cuff any further, and I will post about it in a few weeks. 

I love life, and that means loving the body I am in. I am not chasing a new body, but a body that is stronger and healthier to allow me to achieve all of the goals I set for myself and to keep living my best life.

I have come a long way from where I was in 2013 and I am grateful, and I will continue on this journey; losing weight without getting to caught up on the numbers on the scale. The numbers are there to guide me, but not to define me.

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Love and Light and Happy Monday,

Rose 17308904_1436309309747864_4383739146682615547_n

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TRANSFORMATION TUESDAY

Good morning to all. Happy Transformation Tuesday. Yesterday was my weigh in day, and I stayed the same holding steady at 159 lbs. Being at this weight gives me a little anxiety. You may ask why being the lowest weight since I began my weight loss would cause anxiety. This is the reason: I know that weight can go up and down, even during a weight loss journey. I stayed the same for two weeks, and I lost 9 lbs since the middle of January. I know there will be a time when I do everything right and the scale will stay the same or tip back up. I just do not want it to go up when I am in the high 150’s. This may seem silly, but I am so proud to make it to the 150’s, and I want to stay here for some time. Since I broke my plateau in January 2017  I lost 10% of my body weight. That is a win to me.

This photo was me in 2013, well above 210. This is me today at 159 lbs and so proud.17190854_1425955677449894_8538028883844596331_n

This begins a brand new week. I am really loving Weight Watchers Online and having the app on my phone. It is freedom and totally liberating to me. I eat healthy and have done so since 2013, but the little bit of wiggle room I have now makes this feel more like a lifestyle than deprivation. If you remember I went six months without a cheat day, and that drove me crazy, and I didn’t lose a pound in those six months. Balance, I am finding my balance. Yesterday I had a inspirational brunch with a friend Emily at Mel’s Drive in West Hollywood. Eating out doesn’t have to be impossible. We split our entree and made healthy choices. The omelette was egg whites with veggies, cooked dry with no cheese. I had a few of the grilled potatoes. It was all about the coffee and conversation. Balance is key to life, and enjoying yourself makes it worth living.

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Speaking of balance, I am working on my fitness, my yoga and my running. I am also a bit of a klutz and I bruised my toe. I do not know how, but I have injured two toes in the last few years, and bruised one toe I previously injured. I did not trip on my own feet, it was choreography. They say dancers and former dancers tend to be klutzy, and I am here to say that is a true fact for me. Today I feel so much better, so I will get out for a walk and perhaps a run. I do really need proper running shoes. I have learned that shoes make all the difference. I prefer Saucony. Do you have a favorite running shoe?

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I am learning that weight loss and fitness is not linear. It is up and down, and back up again. There will be times when your body tells you slow down, and times when you kick it up a notch. The key is to listen to your body. Don’t let setbacks stop you, take a rest than keep moving forward. It is Transformation Tuesday and for me transformation would be impossible without the day in, day out daily hustle to get to my goals. Have fun while you are out killing it.

Lee Strasberg once said, It’s about the work. 

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RECOMMITTING TO MY GOALS

In the New Year I have recommitted to a lot of my goals. I have joined Weight Watchers online and I am now my lowest weight on this blog, 159 lbs. I lost 9 lbs since I began on January 14th. I am proud to be published twice in a international yoga magazine, but there is so much more work for me to do, for this blog and my writing. I have recommitted to all of my goals.

I revised my yoga, running, and my workout schedule. Today is my running and yoga day and the weather is my type of running weather and I could not be happier. I am also revising my fitness bucket list, and I plan to work on my book stuff as well as this blog. It helps when the weather is so warm and inviting. One of the things I am really working on is my blanket drive.

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Here is what I wrote about blankets, this is one of the things I am working on. I am trying to collect blankets for the homeless at the Midnight Mission, I slacked off a little but I now have about ten blankets. I plan to deliver blankets and volunteer after I get to 150 lbs. This gives me plenty of time to collect more. 

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Happiness is a warm blanket. 

Charlie Brown

Today I had some extra time to myself when a friend cancelled on our morning coffee. It was extra time to do nothing but to snuggle with my two Siamese cats and a big fluffy blanket. As I lay there completely content to be idle, my mind started to reflect how lucky I am to have such a simple yet happy moment blanketed from all the woes found outside our front door. 

A blanket is one of those items you probably never think about, but think how attached you are to it. A blanket comforts your body and your soul. On a hot summer night do you still curl up with your blanket?  It is much more than an item that keeps you from getting cold, it is a security blanket. A blanket protects in the wee hours of the night. Even our beloved pets feel safe when there is a cozy blanket to curl up in. A blanket is warmth, and warmth is love.

For the homeless a blanket is all of these things and so much more. A blanket is a safety net from the elements of the street, a barrier against all the dangers that exist when you dwell without four walls to keep you safe. To a homeless person a blanket is shelter, a soothing hug in the middle of the night, a coat to keep you warm. A blanket is a veil of privacy, a sleeping bag, a layer between you and the mean streets. To a homeless person a simple item like a blanket is home.

This brings me to my current Charity Project. I will be doing a blanket drive to collect new blankets for the homeless for The Midnight Mission in Downtown Los Angeles.  http://www.midnightmission.org/

I am collecting now through the time I reach 150 lbs. I will be planning to volunteer and deliver the blankets, hopefully with a friend.

As I wrap it up my two Siamese cats Rascal and Spanky are in dreamland curled up with a blanket  and probably content to be there all day. Creature comforts are so important for both humans and animals. 

Much love and light.

Chasing goals and trying to help others is my aim

Namaste’

Rose