The Cost Of Winning At All Costs

This is something I’ve been thinking about lately.

A few months ago, someone asked me if I’d ever backed down or backed away from an argument or going after something I’d fixed my sights on. “Never,” I replied.

And hasn’t that been a tiring way to go about life!

It’s hard not to engage in that kind of thing, especially when so many others pride themselves on their skill in shouting down – literally! – any who disagree with them.  So what do you have to do to get heard in that situation? Shout LOUDER!!!

Are arguments really even actually won on the merits of fact these days? Or is it more like two dogs growling and barking and verbally threatening each other until one dog backs down out of self-preservation and the other dog trots off smugly, thinking this means they’ve actually won and proven somehow that they were right.

Politics, religion, war, vaccines, tv shows, whose turn it is to wash the dishes… how many of these are “won” at the cost of damaging a relationship, a life, a country, a planet?

If you’re really convinced you’re right and your side is sound, then what does it cost you to politely listen to the other side? Really listen, I mean. Not just hearing the noises that come out of their mouths and into your ears, while you’re busy formulating your counter-argument to verbally beat them down until they submit to your will?

Trust me, it’s just not worth it.  Go ahead and disagree with me. If you can’t even listen calmly, sympathetically to the other side, and the only basis for what you believe is right is a religious-like fervor and a loud set of lungs, and stale repeats of the same tired old info, then I’ll respect your right to your religious beliefs, because it sure isn’t based on facts.

Just because you say you’re right and “a million other people” agree with you, doesn’t mean I’ll agree that that is fact or that you’re right.  And in the past, I’d stand toe-to-toe with you and loudly debate that with you ’til the cows came home.

But not any more.  It’s just not worth it and there are far better pursuits for me to put my time, effort and energy into. How much damage do we do when we must win at all costs?

How high a cost is too much?

And even after we’ve paid that price, we still may not win. What then? Do we choose to reflect upon our own choices and the quality of judgement we used? Do we re-examine our stance and our “facts” or beliefs and see if perhaps we may have miscalculated or been in error? Do we resolve to do better and to make amends to the folks we hurt along the way?

Or do we sulk like petulant children and blame everyone and everything else, even fictitious things, as the reason we didn’t win. Do we walk off with a smile on our faces, blithely ignoring the trail of ruin and acrimony we left in our wake? Or do we actually feel exultant BECAUSE of the hurt we inflicted upon others?

When will hurting others cease being an “acceptable” price to pay for how we choose to pursue “winning”? And when will we realize that when we trample over others to win, that we haven’t really won at all?

Self Care Is Not An Option – It’s Your Right To Say ‘No’ To Toxic People

Reinforce your boundaries and borders and your belief that it is entirely appropriate for you to have those. It is not selfish. You deserve to have those. Meditate on having confidence in your right to say ‘No’ to things/people.
Building up your foundations of self-preservation and self-empowerment should give you a boost in well-being, energy and overall life-balance/satisfaction. It should also boost your confidence in disengaging from toxic people/situations.
Choose one thing each day to do for you, externally and internally. You deserve it, you need it, it is healthy. It is not optional to practice self-care.
Right now, the number one priority is allowing yourself your inalienable right to say ‘No’ and the right to insist that your feelings, your needs are entirely valid.
If others can’t/won’t respect that, you don’t owe them explanations (They actually do know you have these rights but they get a kick out of watching you flail and exhaust yourself explaining this to them. It’s just more energy/power they can suck out of you, more control they have over you), so just walk away.
Your energy is better spent on you. <3 hugs <3

Snapology Lego Holiday Giveaway! (Have you heard about this inclusive new S.T.E.M. Kids Franchise?)

Happy Holidays everyone!

I’m hosting a LEGO® Giveaway today!   One lucky reader will win a LEGO® brick set of the Snapology Mascot Sebastian Gator (for kids 6 +)!

Snapology Mascot Sebastian Gator

Have you heard about the fun at Snapology yet?  It’s a cool new S.T.E.M. kids franchise company that has S.T.E.M. classes from ages 1-14, hosts S.T.E.M. birthday parties, summer camps and a whole lot more!

I think we’ve all had our fill of our kids bouncing their brains out at birthday party after birthday party at an endless stream of bouncy house and trampoline-filled warehouses.  Here’s a chance for them to use their brains instead!

And here’s the part that I love MOST!!!

All of Snapology’s programs are INCLUSIVE.

From Snapology’s website:

Our teachers are trained in how to create a safe, non-judgmental environment for your child to thrive.  TSS, Aides or other supportive assistants are welcome to attend with any child who benefits from 1-1 guidance.

We welcome children with EXTRA NEEDS in any Snapology Program. In addition, we offer these 3 fun programs to help your child engage in educational play and develop social skills.

Adaptive Play Time

Adaptive Play-Time

Snapology invites parents to bring their children with extra needs to play in our center in a private, non-judgmental, encouraging environment. During these times, Snapology will typically be closed to the general public, allowing children and their family members to play freely in a supportive and fun atmosphere.During Adaptive Play-Time, parents can feel free to conduct therapy, work on specific goals for their children or just simply let them play and make new friends. Feel free to call ahead to ensure we can provide the best experience for your child. Pre-registration is required.

Bricks and Buddies

Bricks & Buddies

Join us during scheduled Bricks & Buddies time and we’ll take care of the rest. Help your child build awesome creations and lasting new friendships. Every child will be paired with a teen or preteen to help guide, support and build a friendship.  The program is designed for children special needs to have the opportunity to participate in one of our classes or engage in creative play with the help from a new buddy.  Your child and their buddy will walk away feeling confident, supported and be able to take these friendships beyond just the Snapology.

snapology connections


Snapology‘s CONNECTIONS program creatively uses LEGO® bricks as the mechanism for children to interact with one another. These programs are open to any child needing a boost in social skill development (including typical children and children with special needs). TSS or Aides welcome. All programs are in a small group setting with a behavioral health consultant present. See our schedule for dates/times.
> Format: 4 weekly 1-hour classes
> Age Groups:  Ages 3-5 & Ages 6-14

Here are some other articles about special needs children and STEM:

How special needs students can benefit from STEM education

Q&A: How Can We Increase STEM Opportunities for Special Needs Students?

This giveaway runs from 12/25/17 to 1/5/18, open to US residents ages 18+. Winner will be chosen randomly. The prize will be shipped directly to the winner.

Snapology Mascot Sebastian Gator
a Rafflecopter giveaway


*All text in italics was taken from Snapology’s website.

Geeky Gift Guide 2017 – Part One

Part of the fun in attending a geek convention like Clover Con, Dragon Con or the Steampunk World’s Fair, is a tour of the vendors area and the artist’s alley/art show.  Since I don’t have a million-dollar budget to buy everything I like, I pick up vendor business cards for future reference.

Both amazon and elfster have little dashboard buttons so you can automatically add stuff from other websites to your wishlists!  Please consider adding some of these geeky merchants/artists to your wishlist for the holidays!

Geeky Grown-Ups


Geeks Bearing Gifts

This Etsy shop, run by Thomas Nackid (who bears a bit of a resemblance to Mark Ruffalo) has beautiful geeky jewelry with cool quotes on it.





Carrie Hawks – Fantasy Cat Artist at

Pins, prints, bookmarks, stationary and jewelry made with images of the fantastical cats she paints!



Zombie Love Squad

Beautifully fluffy cat ears and tails, stuffed monster dolls, and a few other surprises!







Celtic and Fantasy Art by Kevin Dyer

Cast paper originals, fine woven tapestries, high quality prints, digital downloads.







Sugar Lagoon – Kitten Dreams & Pastel Things

Pretty fantasy kitty themed art, plushies, keychains, enamel pins, wallets, etc.





O Christmas Geek!

So many geeky holiday ornaments! So many fandoms! Game of Thrones, Fairies, Doctor Who, Harry Potter, etc.





Third Half Studios

Geeky dinnerware, posters, prints.

Old-fashioned arts and crafts like your grandma would make…if your grandma was disturbed in some way.


trans Transfiguring Adoption  Your purchase goes to support resources for adoptive/foster families and children. They’ve got shirts, coffee mugs, stickers etc in their site’s shop.

“On average, across the U.S., current foster care rates (of compensation provided by govt.) must be raised by 36 percent in order to reach the Foster Care Minimum Adequate Rates for Children (the “Foster Care MARC”)…. In some states, rates are less than half of what it actually costs to care for a child in foster care.”

 If you’d like to sponsor a Foster Placement Surival Kit yourself: Click here

Survival Kit Details

-Welcome Pamphlet
-Papa John’s Gift Card ($15)
When your normal routine is disturbed it causes stress. Having to cook dinner just adds to the stress of the day.
– Nightlight
Many foster children have had traumatic events happen at night. A night light is an essential item that can easily be forgotten on the shopping list.
-Trust Based Relational Intervention DVD
This DVD introduces parents to vital information from Dr. Karyn Purvis and Dr. David Cross that will show foster parents how to handle/understand behaviors in foster children.
-Build-A-Bear Gift Card ($15)
Some children were NOT allowed to bring toys or clothes with them when they left their birth family’s home. Build-A-Bear offers foster parents the opportunity to bond with the child by helping them make a new stuffed animal friend.
-Children’s book about foster care
This tool is imperative as kids will be confused about the situation they find themselves. A book opens up an opportunity for discussion and bonding.
-Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone Book
-Foster – Adoptive Discussion Tool for Harry Potter (First 3 Chapters)
A sample of Transfiguring Adoption’s online tool that allows foster families to open up the channels of healthy and nurturing conversation with the children in their care.
-Wooden Fidget Puzzle
Foster children are dealing with a lot of change that is out of their control and this is paired with all the existing trauma. A fidget is designed for any age person to play with or handle to help calm themselves. These can help parents stop a meltdown as it starts.
-Robbie the Rabbit Foster Care Brochure
Robbie the Rabbit is a series of books designed to help children understand foster care and adoption. The brochure made for children briefly helps a parent talk to a child about foster care and see if the child might benefit from their helpful books.

Sock Dreams

All kinds of cool socks! Chemistry, math, geeky media, creative patterns, etc.






shldrgn1 Sundreams & Myths

Plush stuffed animals – featuring poseable & wearable shoulder dragons / dragonets and a veritable menagerie of other mythological /fantasy creatures.



firefly isolated


Ian Leino – Graphic Design & Illustration

Stained Glass window clings, tshirts, prints, etc. Firefly, Star Trek, Harry Potter, and many more!









Charlie & The Chocolate Factory necklace!


Sparkle! Designs!

Quote prints & jewelry, mugs, lip balm,




More great geeky gift suggestions coming in Part Two!

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