Foley's blogs

Foley's blogs

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blogging about my books


PersonalPosted by Foley Western Mon, October 17, 2016 15:29:48

Remembering what my father used to say to me; which I have actually found to be true over years, is that Free from all waste and poison, and when no solid food has been taken for some time, one's body functions without obstruction and one feels a surge of vitality through out one's system.

Nowadays some people are beginning to believe that calorie restriction may even elongate/extend life, though this has not be proven.

So it is safe to say that calorie reduction certainly helps one to lose weight and perhaps then feel better within oneself, if it is not overdone for vanity's sake.

People must appreciate we are not all built the same and we cannot all be thin, heck some people who are built succulently naturally, look awful when they lose weight and start to appear gaunt and hollow cheeked.

The right balance has to be struck so we don't send our youngsters the wrong message.

They have to now it is okay to have some flesh on their bones, or to be slightly chubbier than some of their friends, and they are just as beautiful; if not even more beautiful as a result of their feminine curves.

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Four Legged friends

PersonalPosted by Foley Western Mon, June 01, 2015 09:22:57

There is huge attention given to pets and animals these days which is revealing so much deeper understanding of how animals connect well with humans in ways which were never imagined.

A child getting used to having a pet or loving animals will always grow up with valuable attributes which are produced by this unique relationship only reserved for the four or two legged friends.

Having a family pet teaches respect, kindness and sharing as well as the added bonus of alternative entertainment. Ask a child to go to the park, to play football or to swing on the swings and the novelty may wear off, but ask them to come out with the dog and their energy seems unending. The animal ~ child relationship expands their minds to having a friend and also acts as a bridge between how they view the world towards others. It is one of the easiest ways to educate a child in the world of interaction.

Many children will adopt a mothering instinct over the pet, and find comfort petting and stroking it,(in itself a great process of building up calm and secure feelings), some will view it as their own personal friend, something they relate to because in their mind it belongs to them or they can talk to it with no fear of anything but unconditional love in return. Very few children who grow up with pets will become spiteful or cruel towards animals as their own pet will always be in the back of their minds in the event of meeting a new one. The wide variety of pets do not have to stop at dogs or cats, animals do require work and in a normal household may not be a practical addition, but even a goldfish or rabbit, or a hamster can be a suitable alternative. Of course there is also the ability now to take children to animal parks and farms, which proves a great learning experience; if owning your own pet is not a feasible option. There are even websites where owners who need their dogs walked advertise and this can provide exactly the same excitement in a child's life even though it is not their own for most of the time.

Pets and animals encourage children to talk, a child even before they can string sentences will often chat in their own way to a pet or be able to say the names of a favourite animal in a story book. They are not only reactive to their environment but they can also provide a learning experience in their fascinating habits and antics and every parent will know a child's laughter and smile will be one of the greatest gifts and rewards.

Nothing equals the sight of a child running with a dog in a carefree safe environment and a dog or cat can sometimes be the companion to a shy or less confident child encouraging them to talk and express themselves. But the greatest advancement is the development of training animals to help handicapped or emotionally abused children. Charities and societies have been set up to breed and train suitable animals to work with some families to help children in their everyday life and it has proved to be a success. This is also true with some care focussed on the elderly.

There are boundaries of course, animals are in effect wild and have not the ability to sometimes know their strengths or can react in their own way if something upsets them, so care and vigilance is always a requisite. Even the most placid animal sleeping may not be too happy to be woken by an over enthusiastic playmate. Animals need their space too so just piling lots of them into a smaller home thinking it will end up as a harmonious area can be a fragile balance to maintain. A pet should not be bought in haste either, a Christmas or birthday gift may sound a great idea at the time, but care and attention of a pet will become part of the necessary routine and so discussion and pre-thinking is also important.

Children find comfort in relationships and in a world where time is precious and always under pressure, a pet can become a great source of development for a child to understand and find a simple source of happiness and even relaxation. Respecting animals is a lesson for all to learn but this is greatly enhanced if the learning process is a practical one and a pet will always reward back but whatever we teach our children will always be repeated in their thoughts later in life and respect and kindness are fundamentals for everyone to learn.

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Price of Fame

Guiding ThoughtsPosted by Foley Western Thu, May 14, 2015 23:12:24

The glorious trend of talent shows to our screens is an amazing and exciting revolution, whole countries, genders, ages, and groups get caught up in the celebrity fever which takes over when these events are being broadcast and there is no doubt they have brought in many a pretty penny to the organisers and other stars involved in the productions.

Many people view these programs with different eyes. Some see them as a lot of people clinging to their ideal of fame and fortune, some see them as a waste of time, and some people will defiantly switch off so as not to be included in the sheep growing herds following these programs. However the program designers have become more and more confident and ploughed more and more money into these events knowing that as people, we love watching other people. We do get a bit of a giggle when things do not go according to plan, or an act obviously appeared to be so much better in their sitting room singing into a long handled broom, but there is no doubt it is an opening of our eyes to the fact that the world is full of amazing gifted and talented people.

But there is a downside as well, sometimes the young or fragile who sang or performed quite happily to family and friends are not always prepared or ready to take on global mass attention and it can produce long term damage psychologically. It is understandable that over a short period of time, the supermarket worker who suddenly finds themselves under the viewing of millions and performing to thousands of applauding fans can falter in disbelief. The price of fame does come heavy, it can destroy old friendships, families, and futures, it can take over a life and sweep those involved along in a fantastical way in complete contrast to what they have been used to and that is even before the press and paparazzi get involved.

Suddenly from packing someone's bags as they leave the shop, or checking out a loose spark plug in a mechanics world, they are spotlighted and their lives are in every media outlet from newspaper to online. Every event they are involved in, every venture from their homes they make, every action they do is watched and taken by the ever hungry throng of journalists and sensationalised. Whoever cared before if you bought your pasta at the little corner shop down the road? Whoever asked you did you buy your underwear from Marks and Spencer or John Lewis? Such trivialities of life which were private and in some ways totally not anyone else’s business suddenly are projected to world fame along with your picture. Hiding becomes a very serious option.

Friends from the past can become envious and suddenly reveal their deepest darkest secrets, unheard of relatives arrive out of the blue to comment on the close relationship they had with you as a child, when they had only ever seen you at family weddings and funerals. People who you have known well suddenly eye you as a cash machine and not the person who shared a glass of wine or two with them on a night out in the local pub. The expectation of what you should and shouldn’t be doing becomes a blurred line and it is all of this that is secondary to the appearance on stage the very first time, or the signing with a Publisher who gave you an advance for your first book. For the lucky winner they trade something in their life, they have to be strong minded and determined and take on not only a new found career but a new life. They need to be prepared for criticism and spitefulness, and in some cases may even need protection.

Of course the niceties outweigh a lot of the negatives which is why people still do it, there is the money security and the acclamations and the feeling of success at something they love. Interestingly a class of children were asked what they would like to be when they grew up and over half of them were enthusiastic in their response of “a celebrity”. In the world today the rise of such success has now in some of our children's minds become a career prospect.

The money making wheels keep on turning, the viewers keep viewing and for a long while ahead it seems talent shows are here to stay. Everyone who steps out on that stage, who fills in their application form or who dreams of transition from dancing in front of the mirror to performing all over the world, should remember the price of fame, it is not always a bargain to be gained.

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Bring On the Romance

BooksPosted by Foley Western Mon, April 27, 2015 16:16:13

The overwhelming success of Fifty Shades of Grey has sparked a revolution in female writers and readers joining the bandwagon of exploit novels. There is no doubt women today are much more free to discuss the intricacies of desire and relationships more than ever before and in some ways this is a great thing. But the incredible rise to the heights of a novel based on the physical is a great source of objective thinking and does it reflect the sign of our times?

Over the years the greatest romantic novels and films have touched our hearts, brought tears to our eyes and most of the time led to a fairy tale ending. Gone with the Wind, Dr Zhivago, Wuthering Heights, Love Story are all past successful epics of their time and beyond. They all have been threaded with the same colour cotton, beautiful and sometimes sad or eventful stories intertwined with heroines, heroes and a love line which beats up and down and round and round. Centred around love and passion, they have brought to screen or book the feeling that love is the defiant warrior and that it will survive somehow and in some way. They also have been reflective of our way of thinking and society at the time and how men and women view relationships. So is the romance of partnerships something we do not get excited about anymore?

Deep down most women want the same and few do not want the romance to go with the good guy. Of course physical playtime and attraction are part of it but there is also a great queue of women awaiting the rose on Valentine’s Day or the poem filled card ,.And over time the male hero in stories has always been shown as a little of the swashbuckling hero or the knight in shining armour. Films and books where the man has whisked his girl from the depths of her poor life and existence or have been portrayed as strong and ready to fight for her honour, have captured the hearts of most with wistful sighs. The strangest thing is not all women nowadays wish to admit it. In a world of powerful women rising in all career and society areas, few women cite romance as the big attraction and yet will ooze excitement over romantic extravaganzas such as George Clooney's wedding, but not the olden day Romeo, who will let nothing stand between him and his love .

Has it resulted in confused men that they no longer know which direction to go? They are surrounded in the media with women who have successful careers, who earn fortunes and can easily fund their own shopping sprees and home ownership and in the work place are shown to be powerful and equal in many places. We are shown many more men taking on roles in society of house husbands and Mannie’s (male nannies) more and more frequently? Are the men now thinking with a more “equal” head got in their minds that women do not want to be treated like princesses and showered with a wave of impetuous and spontaneous gestures?

Have they now become slightly hesitant and therefore they hang back and wait or cast the thought aside that their partner would not enjoy such efforts or even worse criticise their wayward thinking? Some romance and especially around wedding planning is of course prevalent, but the confusion in how far it goes still remains blurred.

Romance is part of the courtship procedure, very often it is the little things which become memorable in the later years and part of the growth together. It is something to be celebrated and shared in every relationship. The evidence is there as Scarlett O'Hara may have come across as a bit of a bossy boots, and free and independent thinking woman, soon melts when her handsome suitor showed his feelings openly. It is of course part of our world that women have thankfully found a voice and are able to succeed and a lesson to be learnt and treasured, but as in everything the balance between two people and understanding what each other wants is just as important. There are very few women on the planet who will discard the gift of a surprise bouquet or even a bunch of flowers from the supermarket, there are few women who do not wish to be treated with respect and kindness and few who wish their partner to shy away from opening a door, or arranging an unexpected trip away. It can always be said that partnerships should grow together and be equal in many ways and if the guys get the romance right, they may find they have become the hero of ages past and that their princess in the tower will actually let her hair down much more often than he has ever dreamt !

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Life's Surprises

Guiding ThoughtsPosted by Foley Western Wed, April 22, 2015 12:44:59

When Life Takes You by Surprise

Sometimes in life you think you have everything planned, you make a list, or organise an event or even arrange a date in your diary, and out of the blue an unexpected change happens and throws everything into disarray.

So how do you deal with the unexpected? Life is never about one straight forward pathway. We all tweet and twitter and Facebook our plans, that half the time the whole world knows more about what we have planned than we do ourselves. Plans for days off, holidays, or weekend activities, where we are going, who we are seeing or meeting.

When it comes to birthdays and Christmas or any time when someone gives you a gift or a surprise reward do you mind if it pushes your plans off course? Getting a surprise ticket to a live concert on the night when you had planned to sit and chill wine in one hand and a rom com, doesn't seem too bad when faced with the alternative of pushing buttons on a cd player. But if the car breaks down or a household item decides to blow up and needs repairing that same night we nearly all feel the pains of upset. So nice surprises are welcomed, but any unexpected events which cause us disappointment or a loss are the ones we deal with differently. And surprise events can actually add to life making it less predictable and more exciting. It is always worth viewing them from both angles although at the time it may not be that easy.

Some people deal with the unexpected well, coping in a crisis, having a bus timetable on hand when a car fails to start, or being able to look at the rainy weather as a challenge to the picnic day and eagerly rushing to set up a gazebo instead of sitting under the anticipated blue skies. They are not always organised but they do have a less rigid way of life which means “expect the eventuality which may throw your plans out the window and find an alternative without losing the original track”. You have to admire these sorts of people as most of their life is a wealth of “alternatives” and they do have a more relaxed attitude to life because of it, affecting other areas of their lives as well.

Others flap into an almighty overload and rant and rave and feel that the whole event is totally ruined and cannot possibly be overcome. They also very often try to find someone or something to blame rather than dealing with the change in circumstances. These people tend to have a low stress barrier and resort to panic rather than logic allowing the unexpected to be an issue and usually end up wasting time in dismay rather than putting an alternative plan into action.

Whether you were a girl guide or not and managed to carry on “being prepared” through life’s' ups and downs, by the time you get to a certain age your mind has well become accustomed to the idea that nothing is completely guaranteed, and that there will always be hurdles. How you deal with them is always the key point. The pros of being calm, taking the matter in hand and looking for the alternative is a good way of looking at any situation. Without taking the preparations of “just in case” too far, it is better to deal with your attitude when faced with an unexpected change. Sometimes a quiet count of one to ten can work wonders, or a deep breathing moment will calm you into a sense of logic rather than emotion and you can proceed to work through the panicking moment.

Is it life changing? Will it cause a global breakdown; will you or anyone else really suffer due to the unexpected? More often than not the answer is no, and for those events, there is always an alternative.

Less time spent in the disappointment mood, will bring quicker and more positive results and resolves.

So do you flap and find an unexpected surprise too much to cope with and find yourself in a heap without a hope of calmness? Or are you controlled, calm and collected in your thoughts with a carefree spirit?

How do you personally deal with the unexpected?

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Relationship with Food

Guiding ThoughtsPosted by Foley Western Sat, January 24, 2015 10:49:57

Free from all waste and poison, when no solid food has been taken for some time, one's body functions without obstruction and one feels a surge of vitality through out one's own system.

Stop to smell the roses, appreciate your surroundings, realise you live in a great place with interesting and eccentric people.

Appreciate your differences because we are all subtly different which is why we are so great (Humans).

Allow Religion to be guiding only, to give a focus to work towards for a better you, and to encourage love and peace to all peoples.

Now I will be turning my thoughts to writing a sequel to my last book in case it travels to Hollywood


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Over Thinking

Guiding ThoughtsPosted by Foley Western Wed, January 14, 2015 17:03:52

The Dangers of Over-thinking

The mind is like a monkey, as mind-genius Alan Watts said. It’s darting from the present to the future, and constantly dipping into the past, and this running around requires our thoughts. Thoughts are how we interact with our aspirations, fantasies, and memories, and can be wonderful bridges into all-consuming feelings of joy or sadness. Thoughts can also be the building blocks to complex stories and designs, but no matter where they lead, it’s important to remember that one is still their author.

The pace of 21st century living often grabs one’s attention and takes it away from the origins of one’s thoughts. When one is carrying five bags of shopping that threaten to split by the time one finds one’s car keys, it’s difficult to pause and grasp where one’s mind is leading one’s emotions, and one could get angry. Why does this always happen to me? I should have done this differently.

The world is so annoying. This is an unconscious over-thinking, which is difficult to be fully aware of.

How can one recognise, reflect on, and eventually regulate what feels like bubbles of words that flow by as if from an unreachable tap. Eventually they form an ocean that threatens to slosh around and churn up repetitive thoughts.

Our minds are intelligent machines, so why would they flood our thoughts with negativity? Our brains are wired for self-preservation, and will inject our thoughts with worries and concerns to help us realise and overcome danger. The problem is, minds aren’t geared towards modern problems. They’re more built for screaming at harmful situations and telling one to run from the dark. They get stuck on the complexities of a relationship or the bumps of modern day living. In the dark our minds tint our thoughts with added dangers, a throwback to when we had to be cautious about predators. But nobody is hunting us now. It’s just that nobody can tell our minds. Or can we?

The answer is also the problem. The key way our minds protect us is to teach us how to think. They can’t actively put caution in every new-born thought, so it trains us to do it for them. By repeatedly following the same patterns of thought, these patterns become deep rooted grooves that channel our thoughts in a cautious, sometimes pessimistic, direction. So the way out of these grooves is to recognise and examine their effects. Some people consider themselves naturally unlucky, and joke that things will probably go bad no matter the circumstances. It’s more a case of their minds telling them to mentally prepare for the worst, just in case. Unchecked, these thoughts can directly lead to depression and anxiety.

Once you’re aware of them it’s more possible to dig the grooves in a more positive direction. So, Why does this always happen to me? because well, this is annoying, but understandable. The plastic bags are thin and not designed for heavy weight, and this happens to a lot of people. It changes from a generalised accusation, to a more balanced statement.

Be kind on your mind, it’s only trying to protect you. Critical thoughts are essential in life, it’s just the quantity and power of them that needs to be watched. The most important thing to remember is that negative thoughts tend to flood, whereas positive, beneficial ones tend to feel at the front of one’s mind. Here’s the danger of conscious over-thinking— it feeds the over-cautious tendency of thoughts, and when you’re putting energy into thinking over a certain issue, it allows them to multiply.

Listen to those easily-overshadowed thoughts that aren’t touched by over-thinking. There’s a reason why people often return to their gut feeling when trying to decide a big issue.

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Guiding ThoughtsPosted by Foley Western Tue, June 03, 2014 15:30:58

Give but don't allow yourself to be used, Love but don't allow your heart to be abused,

Trust but don't be naïve, Listen to others but don't lose your own voice.

Life is quite short, so Love the people who treat you right and forget the ones who don't.

Leave Haters to be themselves, you will not make a determined hater love you, no matter what you do.

Try your best in all you do and you will find life can be great.

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