Friday, January 4, 2019

Do You Believe New Year's Resolutions Work?

new year's resolutions
When asked what my realistic
goals were for the new year, 
it brought up my dislike for 
New Year's resolutions.  

Even though I may have good
intentions, making a New Year's 
resolution rarely  works. 
The stats prove it.

I am a driven, motivated, hard-working woman who has daily, weekly, and monthly 
goals.  And I beat myself up severely if I don't attain those goals.  I am known to push 
myself to the limit to complete a task.  I run a few businesses and also travel
as a speaker which leaves me no choice but to be organized and focused.  In addition, 
my talk show and book tours are founded on the concept of never ever giving up.  
This is why I only make realistic goals that I know I can attain.

Yet, I rarely think about what I hope to accomplish in a year or five years.  
I am a realist and know that life can get in the way of long-term goals and create 
both disappointment and guilt -- two roads I do not want to travel.

Battered Hope

Yet, there are a couple things I am hoping will happen in 2019.  
I have an incredible opportunity to see the fulfillment of a long-term 
dream to have my memoir, Battered Hope,  become a movie.  
Before I wrote it, I did not see it as only a book, but as a movie. 
It is a story that needs to be shared to a larger audience than what a 
book offers.  This coming February I have the opportunity to see
that accomplished.

My second goal for this year is one I have hoped for and dreamed about during the 
past few years.  Family is most definitely the single most important thing in my life 
but distance and circumstances prevented me from seeing my sister and my brother
for many years.  Both my daughter and I have made a promise that this is the year 
we will travel to visit them. 


There are many things in our lives that are out of our control and no matter how hard 
we try, we may not be able to change that.  But the tenacity and hope that runs through
my veins will continue to give me the adrenaline needed to realize the fulfillment of these 

I am sure that all of us have seen the homeless people on street corners asking for 
spare change.  This often made me wonder how they ended up there and whether or 
not they gave up on their goals of a better life.  

Over the years my husband and other people I know have offered these people jobs.  
One person I spoke with had been a high school teacher but he quit his job because 
he realized the opportunity to make a better income was begging for spare change 
on a street corner.  

A couple weeks ago a friend in the construction industry 
offered jobs to a few of these panhandlers.  
The answer was the same each time. "No, thank you. 
I can make a lot more money here than if I worked 
at a regular job."

Each of us has a different goal.  Hopefully, you will be able to reach the goals you set
for yourself, but I urge you to keep them realistic.  Sure, I would love to lose 20 pounds 
but I am a cookie monster and I don't intend to change.  

I would love to spend more time reading and relaxing but I am a workaholic and choose
not to change that as well.  Hubby and I spent five days visiting our daughter's family over
the Christmas holidays.  It was wonderful in every respect.  Not only was it the best 
Christmas ever, but it was great to not think about work or deadlines for a few days.

One thing I realized during that week was that my brother's words were both wise and true. 
He is 81, works six days a week, eight to ten hours a day at his business restoring classic
cars.  There are days when he sounds so tired and I wish he didn't work so hard.  When I
mention it to him, his answer is always the same:  "If I stop, I will die."  


I finally understood this after those five days off work.  I became tired, had brain fog, 
gained weight, felt lazy, unmotivated and couldn't wait to start working again.

In conclusion:  my long-term goals are to keep working and stay young.

This challenge was given to me for this month's Secret Subject Swap.  It was from 
Karen Blessing of "Baking In A Tornado."  Her question was:  What are some of the
things you would realistically like to accomplish this year and why?           

Please have a look at some of the other challenges by fellow bloggers.  I know you will
enjoy them:

Baking In A Tornado                   
Cognitive Script                           
Part-time Working Hockey Mom                                                                                                                                                                                                                      

Friday, December 7, 2018

What is a Gift from the Heart?

toilet tissue
Standing in line at the post office with over a dozen parcels in my hands, someone tapped my shoulder gently.  When I turned, she said in a quiet tone, "You have a long line of toilet paper behind you."  Mmmmm.... I wonder how many people had a smile when they saw that; yet one woman was kind enough to let me know.
pantie hose falling down

My birthday party last month was at a swanky Italian restaurant and I was surrounded by family and friends.  I dressed up for the affair and found the perfect pair of (brand new, of course) pantie hose to match my black and white polka dot top.  When it was time to hug everyone goodbye at the door, I stood up and my pantie hose fell down.   I immediately sat down, motioned for a close friend to loan me her wrap and continued to hug everyone from that position.  Husbands of friends have had a field day with this and love teasing me mercilessly.

These are memories we won't soon forget but they always bring a smile even though they were embarrassing at the time.

In this month's blogging challenge I was asked "What is your very best Christmas memory?"  I don't have to dig very deep to respond quickly.  

It was Christmas Eve 1987.  There was little money for gifts or a turkey dinner, which was a harsh reminder of how difficult the year had been. My husband and I were going through a rough patch of difficult times.  It seemed that no matter what we did to get ahead, we were thrown two steps back. We had taken a huge financial loss that year and did not have any income at the time. Jobs were more than scarce and every day seemed to bring a new dilemma.

I had taught my children that there are things a lot more important than exchanging gifts, but every parent loves to watch their kiddie’s eyes light up when they open that one special present.  The lesson I was about to learn and one that my children will always remember is that the best gifts are from the heart and cannot be bought.

Christmas giving

My favorite spoon that I used for cooking was a long-handled metal one with a rubber end to protect your hand.  While preparing our Christmas Eve dinner, the rubber end broke off of it. Without warning, the floodgates opened and I began to weep.  All the pent-up emotion of our circumstances poured out.  I sat down on the kitchen floor and cried. When my husband heard me, he came into the kitchen and saw the broken spoon in my hand.

Gently, he removed the spoon from my grip and laid it on the counter. He took me in his arms and held me.  No words were exchanged.  There was no need.

The next day was Christmas and we woke up to a snowfall.  Perfect. We lived in a remote area surrounded by acres of woods. The beauty of the forest was breathtaking. What fun we would have playing in the snow with our children.  The freshness of the pure white snow seemed to send the message that this new year would be a new beginning. I found solace in that.
first snowfall

I knew the children would understand why there were only some small gifts for them under the Christmas tree, but I certainly wished there could have been more – at least the bigger items they had put on Santa's list.  I was thrilled knowing they had used their imagination to make a small token of love for each of us.

We finished opening the presents, and I went into the kitchen to prepare Christmas dinner.  Then I saw it. On the kitchen counter was my spoon – my favorite spoon.  I couldn't believe my eyes. It had a new wooden handle. I had no idea where my husband got it or how he did it, but he had found a perfect piece of wood to fit the spoon.  My spoon.  It could still be used.  I got so excited that I believe the children were concerned Mom had lost her faculties.

The lesson the children learned that day was priceless. They witnessed the joy that comes when giving a gift from the heart.  All of us have had experiences like this that make us realize what is important. What love means.


That was almost 30 years ago and I am still using that spoon.  Every.  Single.  Day. Every day I am reminded that I need to find a way to make a gesture, no matter how small, to show appreciation to those I love. We may never know the impact we might have on someone's life from a small act of kindness on our part. I know I will never forget what my husband’s loving act meant to me because I am reminded of it every time I use that spoon. 

The challenge for this post was submitted by Rena from Blogging 911 

Here are links to all the sites now featuring Secret Subject Swap posts.  Sit back, grab a cup, and check them all out. See you there:

Baking In A Tornado
The Lieber Family Blog
The Bergham Chronicles
The Blogging 911
Cognitive Script
Part-Time Working Hockey Mom


Friday, November 23, 2018

When You Think Romance is Dead - It May Surprise You

Forty-six years ago today hubby and I tied the knot -- and they said it wouldn't last!  For $100 we bought the wedding package from the Elvis Chapel in Las Vegas.  It included a chauffeur-driven limo to the courthouse to get our license, the cost of the license, the trip back to the Chapel, the chaplain, flowers, music, a witness, a cassette tape of the ceremony and pictures.  I'd say it was a good investment, wouldn't you?

46 year anniversary

Another Milestone

As a joke over the past year, I invited people to my surprise birthday party.  I knew it would never happen so I felt safe making a joke about it.  As this new decade approached, people asked me what I was doing for my birthday.  Neither my husband nor I have ever made a big deal about birthdays and I often forget them until I looked at the calendar.   When my hubby asked me what I would like to do this year as it was a 'big' one, I asked him to cook dinner for me.  He makes the best halibut cheeks and my mouth watered just thinking about them.  

When my daughter said that she and the kids were coming for a visit on my birthday weekend I was ecstatic.  That was the best present.  They were here for four glorious days.  

Friday, November 9, 2018

Do You Live Life With Regrets?

Life is too short

Nothing makes you more aware of fleeting time than your birthday.  I believe each of us has our own timeline embedded in our mind as to how long we will live.  Many of us feel like we have crossed a milestone when we live beyond the number of years that our parents lived.

We are also constantly reminded how short life is; that we need to live it to the fullest and not have regrets.  We need to make sure we forgive those who hurt us, no matter how difficult that might be.  Science has proven that bitterness takes its toll on our psyche and can cause health issues resulting in a shorter life.  

Life is too short

Yet, as we approach our 'golden years' I am convinced this term means different things to

Friday, October 19, 2018

Ever Have One Stress on Top of Another?

Ever feel like you are hitting your head against the wall -- especially when dealing with government agencies?  My life, my memoir, and my talk show all echo the same message -- I never quit.  "No" is a word rarely in my vocabulary especially when I experience an injustice.   

I sold an amplifier on eBay last May that the post office damaged extensively.  The man who purchased it mailed it back to me for a refund, RATHER than submit a damage report at his local PO.  Consequently, I was denied my claim of over $1,000.  I submitted three appeals and they were each turned down for the same reason.  The parcel was securely packed so that was not an issue.  It was denied strictly because the buyer jumped the gun and sent it back to me demanding a refund.  

I researched on how to take the PO to small claims court.  You can't.  I thought I had exhausted my resources after spending numerous hours on the phone with various branches of the claim department -- all to no avail.  Three strikes and you are out.  You can't submit another appeal.

Then I contacted the Attorney General of the US in D.C. and registered my complaint about three weeks ago.  Yesterday I received a phone call from the head office of the USPS and they said they were reopening the case; and after I submit the pictures, they will resolve this for me.