A new year for goal setting

2018 is here, and I enjoyed it by napping, waking up to see the ball drop in Times Square, and then headed to bed right away!  I am not much of a party person so it was okay to have a quiet New Year’s Eve.  I enjoyed it with my family, something I haven’t done in a long time.


But now 2018 is here.  I had such an eventful 2017 that I am not really sure how I will top it, but I will most definitely be having an amazing year.  My positive attitude will keep flowing right through this new year and will make this an amazing year.


I was lucky enough to see China, Chile and then back to Canada last year, and I have every intention to travel somewhere this year for a holiday – Canada will be my home base now for a few years but that doesn’t mean I will just be staying here and working.  I am ready to explore a new country even if it is just for a week or two.  Perhaps I will even pick a country that doesn’t start with “C”!


One of my goals (NOT resolutions – a goal is much more attainable I believe) is to get an article or two published, while continuing to work on my book.  My goal is to improve my writing.  I have other goals too, but this is my big one for the year.  I know I can do it – I just need to make the time to write more.


What goals have you made?  Or do you make resolutions?  Do you make the same one every year?  And do you keep it?


A new year, a new start – there is no time like the present to get to it!!


For now though,  I am reminiscing about 2017 – here are a few of my favourite moments from this past year.




A little girl with a doll made me cry…

This past Christmas day, I did something I have never done before – I volunteered at my church to serve Christmas dinner to the less fortunate in my hometown.  It was definitely the most heartwarming day I have had in a very long time.


I signed up to volunteer over a month before Christmas, and I had thought I would be helping with serving the dinner.  Instead, when the orientation came up for it, I was assigned the gift table with another woman.  I really wasn’t sure what was expected of me but I was excited to volunteer and be part of my community on Christmas Day.


I arrived to the church with seeing a big line up of people waiting to come in and be served Christmas dinner.  I arrived at the gift table and the other lady and I started organizing the gifts into women’s, men’s and children.  I had my dinner there and then we proceeded to hand out the gifts.


Everyone was very appreciative of the gifts we gave – some were hygiene items with something extra in them, the kids received toys, there were scarves and various items.  Well, this one little girl was there with her mother, and she was very quietly playing with her doll she brought.  I was talking to everyone to make sure they were enjoying their meal and day, so I went over and had a chat with this little girl and her mom.  She very excitedly told me her name and her doll’s name.  She was very sweet and her mother looked so happy that I had taken the time to come and say hello.


Well, the gift she received was another doll from the church donations, and her mom had received a lovely gift of bath oils and lotions.  They were very happy and made sure to stop me to thank me numerous times.  We had excess gifts (due to the very generous nature of companies here), so we were handing out extra gifts.  I saw two matching scarves so I took them over to the mom and daughter.  The little girl’s eyes lit up and put it around her neck right away.  She hugged her mom and said that we have matching scarves now!  She then looked at me and said thank you – this is the best Christmas ever!  Her mom looked at me with tears in her eyes and said thank you so much – and we will definitely be back next year.  You made my daughter’s day with so much attention and the generosity of everyone.


I turned away and tears ran down my face, and my heart grew.   It was the most rewarding Christmas day ever for me, to be able to make one little girl so happy with such a simple thing as a scarf and a doll.  This is what Christmas is about – having the ability to make a little girl happy with a doll and a scarf.


I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas day !!

What brings you happiness?

What brings you happiness?  Is it seeing someone special in your life every day?  A smile from a crush?  The light that shines in a child’s eyes when they see you after a long day at work?  Or does the end of the day, getting in your car and heading home bring you happiness?


For some people, getting up to go to work brings them happiness and a joy in their life.  I have been very fortunate in my life to have jobs/careers that have brought me much happiness.  Working at some of the law firms that I did definitely brought me happiness.  I know – it’s hard to believe but when I was working at some of the law firms, I actually got up and looked forward to going in to work!  Waking up and knowing I could go and teach brought me a lot of happiness.  Even now, working at Tim Horton’s, which I am sure some people don’t understand, brings me happiness.  It is a simple job that does not require much thinking, but I have such a great rapport with my fellow workers that makes it such a fun and happy place, most days.


What else brings me happiness?  Hearing from my kids.  Knowing that everything is good with them, and that they are thinking of me, just like I think of them every single day.  Knowing that even though we don’t talk every day, they know that I love them and think of them.


Being in Welland and with my parents has brought me much happiness this year.  It’s the first Christmas since 2010 that I have been in Welland and I am very fortunate to still have my parents around at my age, and I am incredibly grateful and happy for that.


Happiness is possible for everyone.  It’s how we react and think.  Every job can bring you happiness – you just have to have the right attitude.


What brings me happiness?  My family, my jobs, my friends all over the world, and life.


So what brings you happiness?

What did you want to be when you grew up?

What did you want to be when you grew up?  Did you accomplish that dream?  Or are you still waiting to grow up ??  I know some of us feel we have yet to grow up – me included some days!!


When I was a young girl, I wanted to be a teacher.  In high school, I aspired to be a lawyer.  I think I would have been a good lawyer if I had pursued that, but after working for lawyers for 30 years, I no longer care to ever pursue that long ago dream!!


Some of us have big dreams and some of us just want to have a career and make enough money to buy a house, have a family and retire one day.


As I have approached my grown up years (I would say that would be about 60 the rate I am going haha), I think I finally have an idea of what I want to be.  While I do love teaching overseas, and I hope to pursue it again in a couple of years, there is a desire to pursue writing full time.  The venue for my writing is still something I am deciding, but I know that if I pursue this and research it like I did with the teaching, I will be successful.  It’s not just research and patience that brings success, it is also attitude.  I have a positive and strong attitude and I know I can do it.


So I ask the question again – what do you want to be when you grow up?  Are you happy with what you ended up doing in your life?



Walking the beat of my own drum

I walk to the beat of my own drum.  I have been doing this for a few years, but I will admit, there have been many times that I have followed the crowd.


Following the crowd during school seems to be something most of us do.  But who are we following anyway?  The popular kids?  The sports kids?  Have you ever thought about that?


Was there someone in your life that you wanted to be like?  That you wanted to be?  I know for me that there were a few people I wanted to be like. Especially in high school.  I wanted to be confident and outgoing, like so many of my friends were.  But I was shy and just hung back, trying to gain the courage to speak up.  Things changed in college and later on in my life, after my divorce.  But if there was anything that I could have changed, it would be to be more confident in myself.  To be stronger and self-assured.


Do I regret the way things worked out in my life?  No.  I believe that everything that has happened in my life has happened when it needed to and when the time was right.


Do I follow the beat of my own drum now?  Absolutely!!  Would I follow the crowd now?  Unless that crowd was heading to South Africa or Australia or somewhere really cool – then maybe in that case.  But no – I would not follow the crowd now.


Follow the crowd or walk to the beat of your own drum.  You choose.  What will you do?


If you could indulge in anything without consequence, what would it be?


It’s an interesting question, one that has made me think of all the indulgences I have experienced over the years.  My ultimate indulgence has always been food.  Which is why I have a love hate relationship with my body and my weight!  Food wins every time though.  I am not at my ideal weight, however, I am happy with how I look, and if I want to indulge in cheesecake, then I will.


So my answer to this question is all Italian food!  I cannot narrow this down – it’s just too hard.  Lasagna, risotto, pasta of all sorts, arancini, polenta, biscotti, cheeses, desserts – the list is very long!  If I could indulge in Italian food every single day, without consequence (and in my eyes – that means without gaining weight!), then that would be the indulgence I would pick!


My trip to Italy in 2014 let me experience the authentic Italian cuisine and it did not disappoint.  I loved all of the scenery, the history, the churches, the beaches, Venice – but the food was absolutely out of this world.  Even with me suffering a horrible cold the entire two weeks I was there, the food was amazing.


Just thinking of the food makes me want to go right now and have a bowl of angel hair pasta, drizzled with extra virgin olive oil and parmesan reggiano and roma tomatoes – mmmmm.


So what would you indulge in?  Would it be food, or something more sinful??