“It is a serious thing just to be alive on this fresh morning, in this broken world.” Mary Oliver
Along with the rest of the world, our plans for Easter this year have had to be abandoned. This was to be a special Easter. My baby girl was having a special birthday on the 11th April, the Saturday of Easter. She was born four days before Good Friday and often since then, Easter has been around her birthday.
But now 60 years later (can I possibly be that old?) I had booked a cottage in one of the wine-growing regions for us.
My daughter, her two sons and girlfriends (if they wished) would all sally forth on Good Friday, spend three nights there and then head back home. We would spend our days wandering the vineyards and sampling the wines. We have a built-in driver as my daughter doesn’t drink…
Make Your Contribution count for you me we, is a portrait of courage not only of the remarkable women whose stories are highlighted, but also of the author, Suzanne F. Stevens, who travelled, interviewed, learned, and taught, over a number of years.
While the overall tone seems ‘Women’ centred, it quickly becomes clear that men are an integral part of “You Me We” making contributions count. This book honours women BUT at the same time does not dishonour men. Suzanne’s primary team of herself and her husband/partner Michael demonstrate the strength in TEAM.
Suzanne’s scholarship program detailing successes and challenges is inspiring. (there is a reason I keep going to that word!)
This book contains surprises, unknown to most, but essential in becoming most effective in our contributions.
What can I tell you from my pretty ordinary perspective?
This is a book about Inspiration, Pay it Forward, and always be grateful.
The women are current leaders, teachers, and business women.
No journey is solitary. No success is singular.
Ahhh just saw this JB! Alas I had to beg off our (my) late night drinks date. Maybe we can try 9/2 as 10 seems too late to ingest alcohol. (A getting old thing that does not impress me at all as it interferes with my sleep.) But we do have such a good time day to day. You and Scotland are the highlight of each day!! I have fond memories of what we Canadians get up on long winter nights. Sigh.
Brad Pitt’s character, John Smith, in the movie Mr. & Mrs. Smith, says – ‘I guess that’s what happens at the end, you start thinking about the beginning.’
This soft of thinking occurs at times of contemplation, endings, and of course becomes more frequent as one ages.
Today I took a look back at my very first blog post in December 2010. Oh my. This is a post about my newly started beginning in on line dating. Nine years ago. In that time many things have come and gone, including on line anything (except for the odd shopping *for things not people!).
But it was a fun and interesting time and worth the look back.
Ladies and Gentlemen and the politically correct, everyone else I present an amusing peek at….Dating by the light….
*Interestingly one of the people who ‘liked’ this was someone who has become a dear friend with whom I now FaceTime weekly at least and is now a Sister of Choice.
JB’s philosophy of ‘I choose how I will spend the rest of my life’ is always a warming hug whenever I visit. Choosing. It may be the best part of life. The choices may not sometimes be all that palatable, and sometimes consists solely of chosen attitude. How lucky we are to ‘choose’. Mandela chose a positive attitude in his years of prison, Hawking chose to move beyond physical restraints. Choosing is not wishing. I wish I were free. I wish I were rich. It is choosing a course of action, an attitude. A dear friend believes you don’t spend your time wishing but you play the hand you are dealt. That is not giving in to the hand or being happy with what you have. It is choosing. And choosing leads to action. That trip JB chose to take even when her plans fell apart and she would suddenly be doing it alone. She sold her house and made the move of a lifetime. A Septuagenarian Adventure. That’s my friend. An adventurer. Stroll around her blog and bask in the Tuscan sun, the New Zealand countryside, and the dance in the sea of her most treasured thing – words. Books, stories, poems. My friend. My treasure.
On turning the calendar card I was confronted with this –
The wording on the card reads –
“The Italian enthusiasm for cycling come to the fore every spring during the Giro d’Italia, a three-week-long road race across some of the peninsula’s most challenging terrain. Thrills, hills, and spills aside, two-wheeled vehicles are an integral part of Italian culture and an uplifting fixture of daily life”
I was immediately transported back to my brief sojourn in Florence in 2013. Can it really be six years ago?
On October 23, 2013, I recorded Day 16 in Florence and noted that the World Road Cycling Championship had just been raced in and around Florence. Cycling memorabilia was on display and for sale everywhere one looked. I succumbed and purchased two little battery operated bicycles with pedalling cyclists whizzing around the footpaths. If you are interested, click here for that post.
*Two months since NY. Resolutions (called goals by some). Where are you on yours?
Last year I had an 80% success on my goals and pleased with the result set three more goals for 2019.
By January 22nd I scrapped all three and did a reset. Important to do this if you want to succeed. Sometimes our goals are just a wish list. It occurs to me the key to success lies in assessment and action. We either continue or reset. I reset to four measurable, attainable goals that deal with Finance, Healthy Eating, Business Development, and Writing. I did not just scrap them but took the time and documented exactly why they were being scrapped and what was replacing them.
* Business development is really quite a small thing, but I decided to turn my hobby time into a teeny tiny business. Having spent the last eight years in retirement doing what I loved, it occurred to me that I could assign an actual worth to what I do. So GCK was born. GrannyChrisKnits is being developed. Baby steps. GrannyChrisKnits@mail.com. Recent projects in demand:
This hat is a warm chic favourite.
*The Writing goal took a bid of serious contemplation. A love of words and intriguing story lines were not enough to drive me forward. My one underlying thought for this year is, ‘Enjoy what you do, and Do what you enjoy” I found I have a skill at reviewing books and articles and can present thoughtful and at times witty observations. I discovered this when I joined a Canadian Authors group where we write but also critique the works of other members. During discussions at month’s end I found I expressed some insights that surprised me. I stopped feeling guilty at what I had not written, and started to be excited at what I was reading and doing. I also belong to a book club that meets once a month called, Crime and Coffee.
My progress in all things this year was held up a bit due to the loss of a dear dear friend and Aunt who passed January 23rd. It occurs to me grief uses a lot of energy and whilst I have continued to move forward it has been at a slower pace. Her memory is an inspiration. Nuff said on that.
* I found myself wondering this week what the value of apology is. Aside from a public show of regret, that may not be at all sincere, but is required for political purpose (as we have seen on this week’s news), what truly is the purpose? If I feel guilt about something I did, and I approach the wounded party (no matter how much time has passed) and I beg forgiveness, am I really trying to make the other person feel better or just myself? It occurs to me that if I express regret at causing hurt that is fine. But if it is an apology that ends with, ‘Please please forgive me.’ Then I think that is a problem. I guess it is important to say you are sorry but it is not okay to saddle the wounded person with a demand for forgiveness. Hmm What think you?
*It occurred to me this week that Drama is over rated in our lives. I am wondering if great excitement is just an energy sapper. Spewers of drama are exhausting and I think sometimes the Message is lost is the Swirl of Energy. I recently read ‘Born A Crime’ by Noah Trevor about his life in South Africa. It was raw, real, and by being without great drama it encouraged serious thought and consideration. An excellent book.
I’ve been watching a lace curtain of snow fall outside my window this morning. It occurs to me that Spring will be most welcome.
On to another week. March 1st came in like a lamb. It occurs to me it might go out like a lion. Then again it might not,
I love every comment. Every word is True True True. I been knitting and cross stitching for decades and it only took forty years to become truly relaxing. When I was younger it was the Challenge of Creation, now, complicated patterns assure me I am compos mentis and avoiding dementia with each stitch. Each time I have to undo work I remind myself I am learning Patience. It is a necessary activity when watching TV so I do not feel I am wasting time. I give very few gifts as I have discovered not everyone appreciates the effort or the result. But I happily create for anyone who wants a creation. Thank you for an amusing poignant post!! Chris (AKA GrannyChrisKnits)
Those were the words of a former friend, whom I once mistakenly assumed had my best interests at heart. Now I rack my brain trying to understand what I could have done to her to cause her determination to turn my life into nerve pressuring misery. Knitting: Relaxing? Therapeutic? Really?
Trying to be open and fair minded, I consider the possibility that she has a good idea. As I look around wherever I go, I see women in lectures, on trains, and in recitals peacefully knitting. They appear to be relaxed as they demonstrate the art of multitasking. How hard can a little knitting be? I wonder.
You’ve always liked challenges, I tell myself, and I decide to try knitting. I’ll start with something small. Yes, I can do this! As I think about it I get enthusiastic about learning a…
Some folk are put off by prolific writers as they often glaringly writing to a recipe, tried and true. This is not the case with Connelly. I first encountered Harry Bosch briefly when I was introduced to the Lincoln Lawyer, first as a movie, then the book.
There is a reality in the lives of Michael Connelly’s characters which guarantees no ‘happy ever after’, but which brings to life people you find yourself thinking about through out the day. Struggle, progress, success, failure, mistakes, humanness. All these things interwoven.
Bosch forms a somewhat casual partnership with Ballard to solve another Cold Case. Justice for the long dead becomes an honorable venture.
Bosch’s relationships with past partners and associates, and family weaves a strong tapestry through each and every book, and they show up here and there, just like real life.
When I pick up a new Bosch book, it is with great anticipation, not just of a current adventure but wondering who will wander in with ties to a past story. Cisco, Lourdes, Mickey? Everything is connected and therein lies the deliciousness.