Considering I only have one day under my belt in 2023, I will do my best to share.
1. Did you stay up to see the New Year?
I did not see 2023 roll in here in the United States. However, a friend in Italy posted the entire shebang 6 hours before via FaceBook. I watched the fireworks and enjoyed an incredible outdoor concert. So, technically I did stay up. This would hold up in a court of law with the right lawyer.
2. Are there any special occasions or events coming up in 2023 for you or your family?
I have four milestone birthday celebrations this year. Three occur in the year’s first half, and the last is at the end of 2023. Last year broke the bank with three weddings and a baby.
3. Do you keep a diary?
No, but I keep a gratitude journal that I hope to become more consistent with this year.
4. How did yesterday differ from January 1st, 2022, or was there n difference?
It was dramatically different. Last year we were in an apartment in Pennsylvania. It was raining, and I took down all of my decorations. This year I am in a new home in another state. The weather was unusually warm and sunny. I went on a 4-mile hike exploring an area of the state park that’s beauty left me stunned, followed by a stroll on the beach where I put my toes in the water.
Gratitude: Be Kind
As Season 2 of that shit show we call 2020 continues, I must say it’s been interesting. What are we on now Episode 9? All I know is I’ve spent a good portion of it crying at EVERYTHING—my emotions on steroids. Not the happy go lucky ones, the “you look like Alice Cooper” kind. I’ve already lost a pair of contacts to a riptide on my face.
A dear friend reminded me that tears are an excellent way to hydrate. I also believe this to be true. My skin is glistening, and my eyes no longer require fake tears in a bottle. I’m one sad song aways from bottling my own and selling them on Etsy. Tears are Us.
Ok, so back in Episode 1, I was on the brink of losing it. Not only was I grieving the loss of my mother, I had the realization that I was also grieving the loss of the way many things had been for years. I was mostly missing that upbeat call at midnight, wishing me a Happy New Year as I lay sleeping on the couch missing the ball drop. Kind of a bummer for the season opener.
Episodes 2 & 3 were much better. I spent the morning trying to figure out what I could do with this newfound freedom. As I left the house for a fun-filled day with my love interest, I was excited about the possibilities. We walked around a small town in New Jersey that I swear was the set of a Hallmark Christmas movie, and I saw my first sign that anything is possible. It was a plaque with my full name, middle initial, and all, followed by PhD. Not that I have any intention of getting a PhD., but it made me think, ‘you got this world by the balls, now go get it.” All the answers are there if you keep your eyes open.
Oh, Episode 4 was a real doozy! It was my first day back to work after 252727262782 days off, and there was NO INTERNET! I work for a physician, and our entire system is internet-based. The phone was ringing off the hook, patients were coming in with new insurance information, and this one issue was about to paralyze our day. I thought, “No, absolutely not, not today 2021 you 2020 wanna be, NO!” There is always a Plan B waiting in the shadows; no matter what the situation, look and you will find.
Ugh, by noon, the earth was back on its axis, and our internet was restored just in time for the start of Episode 5, which was almost too perfect. These days I’m skeptical of smooth sailing. I’ll assume that’s a little PTSD from 2020. I got into my car, and as always, made sure my phone was on Bluetooth. Why? Because every day for the last, FOREVER days, I called my mom on the way home from work. Another contact fell victim to this cry festival.
Episode 6 began with waking up after a dream that was so vivid and intense it left me lying in bed wondering, “Was that a dream?” I spent the rest of my morning analyzing that bag of crazy before heading to work. As if that wasn’t enough, real-life crazy started with news alerts on my phone about the new Civil War talking place in D.C. Hearing and seeing this footage was alarming, but I was not surprised, to be honest. Was I expecting it so early into Season 2? No, but here we are riding the crazy train. That entire episode shined a big fat light on subjects that can no longer be ignored, denied, or defended.
As I opened my eyes on Episode 7, I thought, “What’s next?” Ugh, while watching the morning news, it became clear that shit was getting very real here in the good ole U. S. of A. Watching the hypocrites surface and take flight was a real highlight. I’m not positive, but I do believe I may have broken a record for consecutive obscenities screamed at an object a/k/a a T.V. Oh, and I was laid off, but I’m happy.
Wow, that is all I can say for Episode 8. The list of flip-flopping hypocrites was growing at record speed. At the same time, our Commander in Lies continues to search for a 12-year-old with more than one social media account he can use, and we are now up to 5 senseless deaths following whatever the hell that was that took place in Episode 6. On the bright side, I had a male and female cardinal show up in the tree outside my window. They spent over an hour watching my every move. I’m just going to call them mom & dad and leave it at that.
Episode 9 opened up with ANOTHER vivid dream that was absolutely exhausting. I really believe this is the universes way of saying “Girl, we tried to tell you while you were awake, but you kept ignoring us.” We all know what this means – change is a coming. Something tells me those cardinals are working hard.
As I look at my personal life and the world around us, the veil is being lifted from reality. On a personal level, I recognize things about myself and those around me who may or may not remain in my circle with a clear lens. The evil and injustices evident to many for far too long are finally getting recognized with greater clarity and an undeniable audience. A change is gonna come.
In the meantime, my griefcase is packed, my eyes are open, and as always, I’ll fasten my seatbelt for the rest of Season 2 and try to Enjoy the Ride!
Growing up, our family’s New Year’s Day tradition consisted of watching the Mummers parade ALL day because that’s how long it took to get to the finale and then to enjoy pork with sauerkraut dinner to somehow bring good luck in the year ahead. Umm, would be roasting an entire pig be too much this year, asking for a friend?
I don’t know about everyone else, but I’ve been doing some research to amp up the whole good luck thing for 2021. According to the Google search box I’m not alone.
It was fascinating and alarming as to how some countries around the world ring in the new year. For instance, in Spain it is customary to eat 12 grapes, one at each clock’s stroke. Eating grapes seems easy enough, but it will be a hard NO for me without being surrounded by a group of people who can perform the Heimlich maneuver. It’s still 2020 until that last grape hits the mouth.
Denmark knows how to go out with a good old fashioned release of frustration. You’ll have to grab all of those unwanted dishes, or in this house, I could use the 5000000000 coffee mugs that never see a drop of coffee. Now, according to tradition, you head over to a friend’s home and smash them on the front door to ward off evil spirits and welcome good vibes. The definition of “friend” needs to be CRYSTAL CLEAR before you get started.
As if that weren’t enough for this Danish crew of thrill-seekers, they also try to find the highest peak they can, sometimes climbing on top of chairs, tables, and other objects in the home to jump into the New Year. Let me just put this out there, folks. If you’ve been eating and drinking ALL night and are over the age of 5, do not, I repeat, DO NOT, climb or jump. Remember, you’ll be heading to a Corona virus-infested ER alone if something goes wrong.
Ok, considering the political shit show we’ve all endured this year, I think we might need to embrace the tradition of the Ecuador locals who celebrate Los Anos Viejos, which translates to “the old years”—a tradition in which you want to destroy any of your past demons. This is where it gets good.
Locals use this as an opportunity to create dolls, like scarecrows; some are decorated with signs describing sins, while others (here is where it gets good) resemble sinister people. The creations are then filled with straw, newspaper, and anything else that burns fast. As the clock strikes twelve, the look-alikes are set on fire in the front yard, representing the good riddance to the old and welcoming the new. Oh, sweet Jesus, get this girl a match!
If you’re looking for some less dramatic ways to bring luck and love into your homes, you can turn to Italy to get the party started. It is customary to wear red underwear on NYE in Italy to bring love, prosperity, and good luck. Never underestimate the power of your Valentines’ panties. In the city of Venice, people gather in St. Mark’s Square to welcome the new year with a mass kissing session. Who needs fireworks.
In Wales, you’ll see many back doors opening at midnight to let the old year out. The entry is then locked to ensure that the hot mess doesn’t return. This year they might want to open some windows as well, to be sure it’s gone. We shouldn’t rule out a security system.
Well, considering 2020 has been so extra for many of us, I think it might be a good idea to ring in 2021 the same way. Forget what I said earlier. Eat that pork with a 12 grape chaser in your red underwear while setting your sinister scarecrow look-alike on fire as you jump off of a chair, breaking dishes as you open the back door. Take that 2020!
I wish all of you a happy, healthy, prosperous, and patient 2021!
Buckle up and Enjoy the Ride!
Well, it looks like another holiday season is being shoved out the door before it’s over.
There is all this hubbub about “keeping the Christ is Christmas” yet we allow Cupid to shove him out the door before the New Year has had a chance to ring itself in. NEXT!
Oh, and if my Catholic upbringing serves me correctly, those three wise men haven’t even made it to the stable yet with their useless gifts! I’m pretty sure Mary could have used some blankets over frankincense.
I was so taken back on Monday morning when I noticed Christmas trees already kicked to the curb. It is 3 days after Christmas people … calm down!
Even the Hallmark store has exploded into everything hearts and flowers overnight. Cupid clearly arrived on steroids shoving all remnants of Christmas over to the clearance table without even batting those long lashes of his. Never underestimate the power of a cherub.
I know one thing for sure if I were a kid I would be having a meltdown!
Christmas was a time to be on break from school, not rush us back the minute our gifts were open. No time for savoring family, friends and the spirit of the season.
Today everything moves at the speed of light, even for kids. The days of waking up late in your own bed, playing with your loot from Santa and hanging with your friends are loooooonnnggg over. The streets are barren today other than an occasional tumbleweed.
New generations go straight from the womb to the hamster wheel. I watch young parents on my block packing their new wheel goers into the car as early as 6:00 a.m. and they don’t stop spinning until early evening. Go, go go.
School supplies are back in isle 6 before you have a chance to empty the remains from the previous school year. Candy corn hits the stores in July and is still hanging around in November. Proving once again Candy Corn & Twinkie’s will be here long after a nuclear disaster.
August comes and the likes of the Pumpkin Lattes start rearing their spiced heads in the middle of a heat wave. The store shelves are filled with leather boots when the air conditioners are blasting, and the remains of summer are shoved in a dark corner sporting big red clearance stickers a/k/a the scarlet letter of garments. The only sizes left are lawn gnome or circus tent before we’ve had a chance to hit the beach.
Don’t think our pets are spared from this insanity. The thermometer here in Philly was still reading “Satan’s Balls” when I walked into a display of Halloween costumes at the pet store. Please…not the pets … they’ve done nothing.
The modern world thrives on speed, instantaneity, and immediate results. When you start believing you can loose 50 pounds in 3 weeks with a pill … yup, there’s a problem.
The roads, lines of any sort, or basically “waiting” for anything over a nano second suddenly sends people into full-blown huffing and puffing mode. Umm … yea … unless you’re transporting an organ or you’re on your way to solve world peace … you’re not going anywhere that can’t wait a minute.
I REFUSE to surrender to this lifestyle!
If you decide to ride my bumper in your quest to go nowhere to do nothing, I will slow down to the speed of a glazier … don’t make me.
If you huff and puff behind my mother in line while she counts her change, expect the glare of death. Fear it might actually work.
If you complain that you cannot get an appointment today for that painful toe you’ve have for a month you will NOT go on the cancellation list. Yes, I am the boss of the list.
Happy New Year Folks! Use 2016 to be mindful of the present, your manners and the importance of …. Enjoying the Ride!
It snowed. It was freezing. It snowed. It was freezing; and just when we thought we couldn’t stand to see another flake falling from the sky, Mother Nature decided to get medicated and provide us with this glorious bright sky to show off her handy work.
Hopefully this year she just jumps right to the medication.
This is always a busy month for me, but 2014 was exceptionally busy with me turning the BIG 50. It was a month long celebration with family and friends that I will always cherish.
In between all of that I celebrated my Anniversary along with my son’s 19th birthday.
Nothing like jamming everything into 28 days!
According to my photos March was uneventful except for this interesting encounter at the post office. I swear the post office is just one long Seinfeld episode. I’m no sooner in the door when I noticed this woman sitting behind the glass display case and immediately thought the following:
- OMG! It’s Grumpy Cat’s natural mother!
- Is she for sale or just on display?
- Where am I?
Seriously now ….
Let’s just say April had it’s ups and downs. My daughter turned 21 and my hair turned a lovely shade of stark white for many reasons.
Later in the month I had the pleasure of participating, and more importantly finishing, my first real 5k. Our finish time was 45:30! We lived to talk about it.
I was grateful for the 31 days this month had to offer, because it was jam packed with activities. I participated in the Urban Race, which was a scavenger hunt around Philadelphia and a Foam Race, which I think speaks for itself.
In between the races we had to move my daughter back from school and then prepare for the festivities of a prom, holy communion, a couple birthdays and a graduation party.
Oh yea and go to work … phew!
We kicked off this month by attending the graduation party for my son’s beautiful girlfriend. She was surrounded with love from the endless sea of guests to the delicious home made food!
Once again I participated in a 5k. It was a Super Hero theme, because sometimes wearing a cape just makes you feel better about everything.
Never underestimate the power of a cape!
The dust of the festivities settled, while the dust of our new porch was in full construction mode. I forgot to mention that since April the hubby was beautifying our front porch, lawn and wall. Oh and by beautifying, I mean tearing everything down to the bone to change the entire design because he always has to be different.
On July 17th I had the honor of celebrating the receipt of a Historic Marker for a building on the property of my Quaker Meeting. The Hall that was honored was built by abolitionist Robert Purvis and others to serve as a community meeting place and safe venue for anti-slavery activists to gather. One of the highlights of the day was meeting the descendants of Robert Purvis including his 5th generation grandson, who is all of 8 years old!
As if July would be complete without celebrating my little guy.
We finally had a breather to enjoy some down time and used some gift cards that had been collecting dust for too long. We enjoyed an amazing meal at the Joseph Ambler Inn. The outside patio was just glorious!
I took a day off from the salt mines to spend what seemed like the entire day at the Spa being pampered from head to toe…literally. This was a birthday gift from my sister that was perfect!
August was filled with all things beautiful!
The porch and front of the house are looking fabulous! The kids were settled in school and we had some time to attend our first Farm to Table Dinner at the Blue Moon Farm in Pennington, NJ. The food was off the hook, prepared by local chef Max Hansen and the company was even better with the hubby, his cousin and a friend.
September in NYC was a blast as I celebrated my dear friends’ birthday and the Feast of Gennaro in Little Italy. We spent the day touring around, eating, laughing, shopping and celebrating our friendship.
The month of fabulous food, friends & family.
Let’s see … I participated with Peanut, Susanne & Valentine in the Mutt Strutt here in Philly to raise money for PAWS.
I celebrated my 10th anniversary at work. Oh, and by “celebrated” I mean went to work like every other day without acknowledgement.
Landon .. Landermander .. Landon Bandon Boo… hehehe!
The Rocky Run was a blast!
Shopped, cooked, baked, wrapped and did all things Christmas including spending time with family & friends.
Took a trip into the city with the hubby for a fabulous day that ended with a couples massage which left us both rejuvenated and ready for 2015!
That’s All Folks !
The best is yet to come!
Happy New Year … Enjoy the Ride!