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4 Estrella Publishing - Mountain View magazine January 2023

Ringing in a New Year brings to mind Father Time, clocks ticking forwards, turning the old year into a new, shiny thing, full of promise. Time is a thing that has changed as I have marched through the years. As a child, summers stretched out towards infinity; long, lazy days spent reading, taking walks along country lanes and of course massive road trips with my family. The school year itself was never-ending but for completely different reasons...

As I became an adult and had children of my own, time warped again. The days were divided into feedings, naps, and the lack of time spent sleeping ourselves. Those days were long, but strangely the months and years flew by.

Once the children were in school I thought there would be more time for me, time to read and pursue hobbies. In actuality the time after drop off was never as long as it had looked on the clock that morning. Before I knew it I was back at the school gates waiting for happy faces running towards me, “Mommy, look what I made, learned, have to make tonight!”

After school activities gobbled up any time that was left before dinners had to be made, baths taken, and sleepy bundles of children were read stories of giants and princesses, and tucked safely in their beds.

Now I find myself marking the time between visits, the giggling, tiny children are grown and flown, and my days are more or less my own. I cherish my free time, and there are many wonderful things I can accomplish now. And yet... in the back of my mind a clock is always ticking, marking time until the day I will have the house full of noisy, whirling dervishes again, demanding meals and attention.

This year I challenge you all to use the time we are given in the best way you can. Whether that means taking time for yourself, or giving time to others, be aware and fill the year with memories you can cherish once Father Time turns our clocks to 2024.

Editor, Mountain View Magazine 623.398.5541

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Catherine Uretsky
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What is Normal and How Do I Get There?

One of the most common questions I’m asked as a psychologist is if something is “normal.” The bottom line is this: Normal is what you know. Therefore, it’s very subjective.

By example, let’s compare Shameless, a train wreck of a show, to the idyllic Leave it to Beaver. If you were raised by the Cleavers, you have a wise father who works in a suit and tie and a near-flawless mother who is a domestic engineer in heels and pearls. If you were brought up in a house a la Shameless, you have a drug-abusing, absentee mother with untreated bipolar disorder and a narcissistic, alcoholic father who is into all measure of lying, cheating and stealing. What you’re used to will be seen as normal until your presented with an alternative.

Instead of “normal,” I invite people to look at behaviors as healthy vs. unhealthy. I also use words like “typical” or “atypical.” For instance, it may seem entirely abnormal for someone to have an abusive childhood and continue to find themselves in abusive,

tumultuous or dramatic relationships as an adult. Why would they want that? Because that’s their “normal,” that’s what they know. I would even say that such a pattern is “not atypical,” which means not infrequent but not the rule either. I wouldn’t say it’s “normal” because there are plenty of women with this history who are not in abusive relationships and some who absolutely refuse to be and look for the polar opposite. Yet there are plenty who find themselves in these repetitive patterns, so I wouldn’t classify it as “abnormal” either.

What can you do to discern whether you should make some changes in your life? Ask yourself one question: “If a friend of mine lived life the way I do, what would I THINK about it? How would I FEEL about their situation? Is there any BEHAVIOR change I would suggest?” Stepping outside of yourself can help you do an honest assessment of which parts of your life are healthy, life-generating ones, and which are unhealthy, soul-damaging ones.

For the full article, visit www.doctorbellingrodt. com. Check out free and paid training options at https://thepsychoeducationacademy.thinkific. com/collections.

DISCLAIMER: Material is for informational purposes only and not intended to be a substitute for evaluation or treatment by a licensed professional. Material is copyrighted and may only be reproduced with written permission of Dr. Bellingrodt.

Submitted by Jennifer Bellingrodt, Psy.D., Licensed Clinical Psychologist. For the full article and more, visit

6 Estrella Publishing - Mountain View magazine January 2023

The IT Formula

Our habits and behaviors significantly influence our success; setting goals is one habit that will quickly contribute to a life of success. Over the past three Mountain View Magazine issues, we have shared the Three Keys of Success: Thinking, Passion, and Body Language.

Over the years, I have found that the #1 habit successful people possess is the habit of goal setting. This will lead you to the next habit, the habit of the check (checking your goals off), which creates the habit of accomplishing your goals. Where could you take your life if you developed the habit of achieving your goals?

Making the Magic Happen with “The IT Formula”

Write It

This action moves a wish or a dream to reality and gives you a 50% chance of accomplishment

without doing anything else. It subconsciously points your mind in a specific direction. You will find yourself unconsciously making choices that move you toward your goal. Through the years, I now accomplish 70% of the goals I put in writing without doing anything else.

Plan It

Creating a plan gives you a 75% - 85% chance of accomplishment. Thinking steps through creates a roadmap. We do not always know the how, but knowing the first few steps exposes us to the next steps. We gain momentum and confidence and what we saw in the distance is now within our grasp.

Do It

Trick Question #1 – What is the “It” in Do It? It is the Plan. Taking action on your plan will give you a 95% chance of accomplishment.

Check It

Trick Question #2 – What is the “It” in Check It? Do you ever have a day that does not go according to plan? What are our options? I could get stressed, upset, or angry, or I could stay flexible and develop my next helpful habit. Highly successful people have developed the habit of finding solutions to problems. Practice this habit regularly, and you will soon discover you have hardwired your brain to find solutions to almost any situation. You will find you possess confidence in achieving your goals. Why? Because you always do!

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Yum Yum

Cowboy Caviar for New Year’s Celebrations

Tradition suggests that you eat black-eyed peas to welcome the New Year because as author John Egerton wrote in his book, Southern Food, they have a “mystical and mythical power to bring good luck.”

While the most common way to eat these beans is in a dish called “Hoppin’ John,” I prefer to enjoy them in Cowboy Caviar with tortilla chips while watching a college bowl game!


One 15-oz can Black-Eyed Peas, drained & rinsed

One 15-oz can Black Beans, drained & rinsed One 10-oz can Rotel Diced Tomatoes & Green Chiles

1 Yellow Pepper, diced


Optional: Pickled Jalapeno slices to taste Chopped Fresh Cilantro to taste

Mix everything together and let flavors blend an hour in the refrigerator before serving. The colors look especially bright and vibrant served with yellow and blue tortilla chips!

Submitted by Maureen Woods

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½ C Red Onion, diced 1 Avocado, diced 3 T Olive Oil 2 T Red Wine Vinegar 1 T Worcestershire Sauce ½ tsp kosher Salt ½ tsp
½ tsp Black Pepper

Legal Advice


To avoid probate, beneficiary designations work well for accounts and real estate, if you are leaving assets to a few people or charities.

Without a beneficiary designation or trust, you can avoid probate only if the assets do not exceed $100,000 of real property, $75,000 in personal property (cash, accounts and tangible personal property), or you do not expect more than $5,000 in wages in the year after your death.

For accounts, there several terms used: pay on death pay on death (or “POD”) or transfer on death (or “TOD”). For IRAs and 401ks, the terms “designated beneficiary” is used.

Financial institutions do not use the terms POD and TOD interchangeably. If you use one of the terms and are told that the bank does not have that type of designation, then ask for the other type of designation, or even ask whether any beneficiary designation is available.

Remember never to list a minor on a designation for POD, TOD or IRA type account. A minor cannot receive more than $10,000 in a year without a court conservatorship; which is more costly than a probate and distributes the funds when the child reaches 18. In such cases, a revocable trust and Will are more effective and less expensive.

Sharon Ravenscroft, Esq., The Cavanagh Law Firm, PA, Sun City and Phoenix offices, (623) 815-7451 or Sravenscroft@ Sharon’s practice focuses on Wills, trusts, probate and trust administration. For more information www.

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Spiritual Thoughts

“Do you work from home?” is one of the top 5 questions I ask when I meet someone new, right after “what company do you work for?” Just the other day I was invited to see where a husband and wife work from home in a makeshift office. With noise-canceling headphones and desks that can go from a good sitting height to a good standing height they had their offices wellestablished and equipped.

For most people the reality of working from home was unusual until 2020 a pandemic forced people to work from home. All of a sudden some of the boundaries between work and home collapsed, hit with the wrecking ball of necessity.

Now, I know working from home can be amazing. I have been working from home for the past 2.5 years with Spirit Song Church. A load of laundry can get done here and there. My writing days can be spent in pajamas or at least really big fuzzy socks, and my meetings can happen online with video conference calls.

I save the stress of travel, I save money on gas and wear and tear of my vehicle. It is a win-win situation until… I find myself working on things past the hours I would normally work. I mean “work” is 10 steps away from my bedroom, so why not get a couple of things done off my list while I can? This repeats can repeat until relationships suffer, mental and physical health suffer, and our identity as beloved, valuable people suffers. We end up feeling valued ONLY because of how much work we do.

The struggle to find balance and establish healthy boundaries in our lives is real and it has been for generations past. There is a reason God gave people the command to keep the Sabbath holy.

God loves you and values you so do yourself a favor and love yourself by setting healthy boundaries this new year.

Submitted by Pastor Misty Howick, of Spirit Song Church

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Home Sweet Home

DIY projects are a great way to improve your home’s value without spending a fortune. Many projects are simple enough to do yourself, and they can make a big impact on the value of your home. Here are some DIY projects you can do to increase your home’s value.

1. Paint: A fresh coat of paint can make a big difference in the look and feel of your home. Choose vibrant colors to give your home a modern look, or go for classic neutrals to create a timeless feel.

2. Refresh your kitchen: A new countertop or a fresh coat of paint on your cabinets can give your kitchen a whole new look. You can also replace outdated appliances with energy-efficient models.

3. Landscaping: Adding plants, flowers, and shrubs to your yard can make it look more inviting and attractive. This can also increase the value of your home.

4. Update your windows: Replacing old windows with new, energy-efficient models can help you save money on energy bills. New windows can also improve the look of your home and increase its value.

5. Install new lighting: Replacing outdated lighting fixtures with modern ones can make your home look more modern and inviting. Choose energy-efficient fixtures to help you save money on your energy bills.

6. Add storage: Adding storage to your home is a great way to make it more efficient and organized. It can also make your home feel bigger and more inviting.

7. Upgrade your bathroom: A new vanity, showerhead, or tile can give your bathroom a fresh look. Modern bathrooms are in high demand, so upgrading yours could increase the value of your home.

These are just a few DIY projects you can do to increase the value of your home. With a little time and effort, you can make your home more attractive and valuable.

12 Estrella Publishing - Mountain View magazine January 2023

This samurai sudoku puzzle is a great way to engage the brain and help develop logic skills. To solve this Samurai puzzle use standard sudoku rules for every 9x9 grid: each digit from 1 to 9 can only appear once in every row, column and 3x3 box. Good Luck!

Estrella Publishing - Mountain View magazine January 2023 13 Samurai Sudoku
Difficulty: Hard Wednesday, 14th December 2022 3 5 1 6 2 6 3 8 7 2 2 8 9 3 9 3 5 4 6 9 9 8 7 1 2 5 3 7 7 3 4 5 3 6 8 6 5 4 5 6 7 8 3 5 1 4 6 7 3 1 6 4 9 7 8 4 7 1 4 5 9 1 8 2 7 3 9 4 8 6 7 5 2 4 1 8 3 3 6 2 6 5 8 5 9 6 9 1 9 8 5 3 5 7 2 8 4 9 7 6 4 9 7 8 1
Solutions are on our website
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Estrella Publishing - Mountain View magazine January 2023 15 Photographs courtesy of L Kopis and Hollywood Company Productions All residences must be occupied by at least one resident 55 years or older. Services provided are limited to those described in the Lease or Residency Agreement. The community is not a hospital or nursing home. All dimensions and measurements, including without limitation square footages, ceiling heights and window sizes, styles and locations, are approximate and may vary per floorplan. Measurements in model residences may vary slightly without incurring any obligation or liability. Actual residence measurements will vary. Terms are subject to change without notice. 19RC150 10//20 15833 W. Clubhouse Drive Goodyear, AZ 85395 623.440.6800 l Life was meant for great adventures and close friends. At Robson Reserve at PebbleCreek, you can have both. With planned outings and adventures, there is always something new to enjoy and someone new to enjoy it with. Schedule your personal tour today. 623.440.6800 l Call today for fall specials! Call 623.440.6800 FORGING FRIENDSHIPS AT ROBSON RESERVE AT PEBBLECREEK
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