By: Honey Good
A new year, new opportunities. This year is ripe with opportunity, darlings but don't forget to...
- Wear bright lipstick.
- Take a walk.
- Kiss your spouse.
- Call a long distance friend more regularly.
- Start eating breakfast.
- Try a new ethnic cuisine.
- Buy a juicer.
- Buy the shoes. Just buy those darn shoes you've been lusting over.
- Eat more greens.
- Take a nap.
- Go see a foreign film.
- Shop local.
- Leave the past in the past.
- Invest your time in friends who make you feel good.
- Facetime your grandchildren.
- Purge anything you haven't worn in six months.
- Have a glass of red wine nightly.
- Forgive and forget.
- Say thank you to everyone you meet.
- Write a letter...a real letter. No email!
- Plan a monthly lunch with girlfriends.
- Wear color.
- Say a prayer in good times and in bad times.
- Listen to a podcast.
- Spend a day helping others...soup kitchens, hospitals, schools.
- Smile - even on the hardest days.
- Pay a compliment to a perfect stranger daily.
- Listen with intent.
- Cook a new recipe.
- Disconnect from your iPad, iPhone, computer, etc.
- Floss your teeth.
- Walk a flea market!
- Take up Bridge.
- Grow an herb garden.
- Plan a weekly date night with your spouse.
- Host a dinner party "just because."
- Learn french...why not?
- Take a drive.
By Susan "Honey" Good
Last night I received an email from my girlfriend, Carole. We attended school together in Kankakee by the Sea. I believe she found HoneyGood.com by chance. I don’t promote myself, though my husband Shelly pushes me to ‘put myself out there.’ He is the most important driving force in my life. Actually, he is my life. For those of you who do not know by this time, Shelly and I share everything. We are like Gracie Allen and George Burns or Donald Duck and Daisy Duck. Everyone who knows us, knows that we are glued at the hip, as they say.
Anyway, Carole found my musings online and part of her email last night made me laugh out loud. She wrote to me to comment on a story that I had just written about women bullying other women. (If you missed it, read it here.) Carole and Shelly also are acquainted having met last summer at a luncheon in Kankakee by the Sea. Shelly and I drove down to lunch with 16 of my high school classmates and we all had a great time.
Carole’s email read, “On a pleasant note, I so enjoy all your articles. It is a special treat when you bless us with ‘Shellyisms.’ He’s a rare find. Looking forward to you putting these in book form for us to peruse at our convenience… hint hint! Maybe put a Shellyism at the end of each article.”
We’ve all experienced unexpected surprises in life. They can be shocking, daunting or even scandalous—or amusing, gratifying and amazing. Last Friday was National Smile Day, a celebration founded by Harvey Ball, creator of the iconic Smiley Face. As I was writing about the true meaning of that day, I couldn’t help but think of my friend, Alvin Wong, who was identified as the Happiest Man in America by the New York Times in 2010.
Most people have heard of life coaches, but life coaches are everywhere nowadays, and you hear about all types of them: nutrition coaches, fitness coaches, career coaches and so on. But it seems that most people do not know exactly what life coaches do and who would need them.
Do you ever wonder ‘what if’? I think we all do from time to time. Watching my grandson go off to college and my stepson leave to spend his senior year studying in Paris got me to thinking. What if I’d finished college? What if I had studied abroad? Would my life gone in another direction? Of course it would have. But what would I have missed in the wonderful life that I’ve been living? What if I’d had developed a relationship with that rich old guy I had a date with 40 years ago instead of moving to the north woods to manage an inn and be a hippy? It’s fun to speculate on these ‘could have beens’. But would I really change anything? Maybe. Maybe not.
It’s 6:25 a.m. on a Saturday morning, and I’m sitting at the living room game table I usually appropriate for work every morning, writing and sipping delicious hot steaming coffee from my favorite French mug. Whenever I look up—which is often given the stunning panoramic view of Lake Michigan right outside our floor-to-ceiling windows—I’m treated to a stunning sunrise. And this morning, I realize something has changed significantly; the sun has moved south in the sky and is rearing its head a little later than usual. It lets me know fall is in the air.
Retire is a word that scares me because it means growing old. It forces me to face the fact that unpleasant things are going to happen—and I don’t want to go there, for 100 reasons that would take me hours to explain. I have confronted my conflict in the only way I know how: The word retire has no place in my life.
It is early am in Montreal, Canada. All is still at the Ritz, our home away from home, for the next three days, except for my mind. It is racing a mile a minute because I am excited to share my musings with you.
We are traveling with another couple. The woman is one of my dearest friends. We share the same name, Susan. We are mothers and grandmothers. We enjoy the same values. We are one another’s fans. And that is where it stops, the sameness. She has been a high- powered businesswoman all of her life. She had to learn early on to be very direct, very strong and very competent. I have learned from her during our 26 years of friendship.
And so it goes with my women friends. I have never desired to be part of a ‘squad.’
Some women are ‘groupies,’ comfortable with their little team, other women spread their wings, mingling with women whose values are like theirs but their interests range in several directions, other women have a select friend or two and many women spend their time with ‘best friends’ in their family.
’ve always thought of myself as one one of those 'full speed ahead’ sort of people. But, of late, I’ve noticed that I’m holding back just a bit. When I meet new people and they reach out to me to stay in touch or plan another meeting I find myself internally re-coiling, just a bit. What’s that about? I certainly have more time than I used to have when I was working in the real world. What is making me cautious or stand-offish? Perhaps I’m just getting selfish with my time.
I’ve never been big on talking to strangers. I can fly across the country and never speak to the person next to me. But these new feelings of closing in are even more isolating than that. I’m guarding myself. From what, I’m unsure but it does feel like I’m constructing a wall.
7 years ago, my wonderful world came crashing down. Life was no longer a marvel. I had a diagnosis of lung and melanoma cancer on the same day! I am lucky to be alive. Here is the story of my journey.
By Lorraine Iverson
It’s funny when you retire you think you’ve got all the time in the world to do whatever you want. At least that was my thought. Sure, I still have commitments, meetings, and deadlines for my freelance gigs. But most of my days are blank canvases. Good analogy since I have a huge stack of blank canvases in my studio.