Days #11, 12, 13… of 31 Days of Gratitude

If you’ve followed this blog for some time, you’ll know that I can be a bit forgetful about keeping up with posting. It isn’t that I don’t want to. I really wish I could just plug into my brain and upload all of the thoughts I have, but then I feel that you’d all run screaming for the hills.

So while I don’t intend to write out 13 different blogs to cover Days 11 thru 24, I will list below those 13 things I am grateful for in one swoop (keeping them short – I’m promise). So here we go…

Day 11:  I am grateful for being raised in a household where I learned about love, hard work, appreciation instead of hate, bigotry and selfishness.

Day 12: I am grateful for the things that I often take for granted. My eyesight. My hearing. Even, despite my size and physical “disabilities”, I can still walk, drive my car, watch my favourite movies or listen to my favourite bands. I can enjoy watching the sun set, hear a baby’s laughter, or a cat’s meow.

Day 13:  I am grateful for whatever God-given talents I have. I can’t sing a lick – okay I can but no one wants to hear that – but I’m half-way decent at drawing, and I’m told, not a half-bad writer.

Day 14: I am grateful for my sense of humour. I’m sure others might protest – I’ve been told I’m a bit dry and can often be a tad sarcastic. No! You don’t say!? See…but I love to laugh, and make others laugh. As far as I’m concerned, if you can make me laugh, I’m already half in love with you.

Day 15: I am grateful for my mom’s cat Oreo. He helps to keep my boy Finny entertained and not so lonely since my Ginny left us in April. While he can be a royal pain in the ass sometimes, I know that Finny likes to have another buddy around to play with – or fight with – depending on the hour of the day.

Day 16: I am grateful that my job and experience has afforded me a decent wage where I don’t have to live pay check to pay check like so many others must. If I want something, I can get it, though I do try to limit what I want, to what I need.

Day 17: I am grateful for having had close family in my life while I grew up as an only child that I never felt alone. Some cousins were with me often, our families spending a lot of time together – and they always were just “there”.

Day 18: I am grateful for having had my dad in my life, even if for only a short time. As I get older, I remember less and less about him. And I was only eleven when he died, so much of my years with him I was too young to remember anyway, so I have to rely on family and photos to remind me. But even though he was taken from us too soon, I am always grateful for the years that I did have him. He was the best.


Day 19: I am grateful for having had the opportunity to visit the places I’ve been, especially Rome and Athens. I’ve always been fascinated with ancient things – Rome and Athens being just a small part of that fascination. But having been able to visits those cities and many others in my life so far, I feel blessed. And there are still so many more places I want to see.

Day 20: I am grateful that I have always had a roof over my head, food in my belly (too much, in fact), warm clothes in the winter, and a comfy bed to sleep in. So many do not, especially at this time of the year when their very survival depends on the things we take for granted.

Day 21: Along with Day 20, I’m also very grateful for running water, working toilets and showers, and shiny appliances to use to make plenty of food. Too often we get bogged down in our lives, worrying about this or that, that we forget about those who have nothing. And I hate that I have to be reminded of this far too often.

Day 22: I am grateful for having some of the same friends in my life for the past 30+ years. They have been with me through the good and bad, the ups and the downs, always willing to lend an ear, or offer a hug…and even to bring the tequila and the shovel. These friends have seen me at my worse, and yet they’re still here. I love them all.

Day 23: I am grateful for YOU. Sure, some of you are family and friends, even some of those I mention in previous days of gratefulness, but I don’t know some of you personally at all. Yet, many of you have taken the time to not only read my posts, but have followed me throughout this journey and my many ramblings, and you’ve stuck around, supported me and offered me words of encouragement. You will never know how much that has meant to me, but I am very grateful for it all. And YOU!  So thank you, my friends!  Red Heart on Twitter Twemoji 2.4

Day 24: As I sit here on Christmas Eve, the condo is quiet because my mom’s been sleeping now for several hours, I feel somewhat lonely. But I know I’m not. Not really. It’s hard to explain. I’m sure you have all felt like this; maybe even now as you read this you feel lonely. But just as I remind myself, please remember that even if you’re in a room full of people, you can feel lonely. Keep people you love and care about in your heart, and you will never be alone. Trust me.

Merry Christmas to those who celebrate it. 


Regardless, may your hearts be full of love, laughter and song.




Day #10 of 31 Days of Gratitude

There’s always that one thing that is a catch-22, where you have specific feelings on the subject, which tend to be neither right or wrong. It all depends on who you ask.

Or what day of the week it is.

Day #10

I’m grateful for 21st technology – iPods, cell phones, wifi, laptops and notebooks, big screen televisions, the Nav system in my car, and even the fact that I can work remotely for my job from another country. But specifically in this case: social media.

I know that many people don’t like it. It can be invasive. People take it a little too far (some “selfies” are just much too personal/revealing!). It gives your (ex)husband more opportunity to meet with other women and have affairs…And it’s the perfect medium for people to spread hate further, and be couch critics on everything and anything. But it also has a great many advantages, some of which I’m very grateful for (yes, ending in yet another preposition!).

While living in New York by myself, Facebook was the best thing that could have happened to me. While I fought to join it for some time, I eventually did and I didn’t regret it. Because it allowed me a great way to keep in touch with my mom, my family and friends…and to get back in touch with many family and friends. As well, it let me actually meet family I didn’t know existed and likely wouldn’t have without such a medium.

As a wanna-be writer who will be self-publishing, which means self-marketing of my books, social media gives me a multitude of platforms in which I can “ply my trade” so to speak. I have a website for my writing, I have a Facebook author page. I also have a Twitter account for my writing.

Thanks to these media platforms, the exposure I have, and hope to get, in order to promote my books makes it much easier. That’s not to say that I’ll suddenly have a couple million followers on Twitter or LIKES and followers on my FB page simply by having these platforms, but it certainly helps.

And who knows…maybe someday I will have a couple millions followers on Twitter and FB!  (So please…go now to them both and if you aren’t already following me on Twitter or haven’t yet liked my FB page, please do so. Pretty please!!! 🙂 )

Blessings to all,


Day #9 of 31 Days of Gratitude

If anyone expected me to be completely void of humor/humour on this 31 days, they certainly don’t know me at all…

Day #9

I sometimes think of the geographic area where I grew up (and where I’m now back living) as an unattractive eyesore due to its lack of, well…height. The tallest “hill” in this city – if you’re not counting the off and on ramps to the expressway – is the one on the college campus, and I’m not convinced it’s a natural formation.

When I first brought my now ex-husband to my city and asked him what he thought, his first words were, “It’s flat.” This city is formed over farmland. Way back when, the early settlers (some of whom I am descended from (and yes, I’m aware I’m ending the sentence with a preposition)) were farmers. This area was perfect for it because it was nearly surrounded by water, and it was…flat.

Do you see a hill anywhere in this picture?

Windsor skyline

Technically where we are located is considered similar to the US mid-west. All of its flatness means that there are no lovely views of the hills and mountains in the Fall when the leaves are changing (my favourite time of the year). It also means no skiing (not that I do that anyway). But you can conjure a lot of reasons why a flat geographic city is at a disadvantage. I lived in Ithaca NY for 20 years and one of the best things was the gorges, waterfalls, and the colors on the hills in the Fall.

But one of the worst things…driving in the winter. And Ithaca had some terrible winters. Imagine trying to get downtown and you have to map out the least hilly route to get there without your car turning into a luge.

And that, my friends, is why I’m grateful for my hometown – Windsor. Because it’s flat. So flat that I have never needed snow tires and the only accident in the winter I was ever in was so minor that I didn’t even have a dent in my car!

So I’m grateful for the boring, geographically-impaired land on which I live. Which if you read my previous blog posting…is a Jeopardy question:  Which Canadian city is the only city SOUTH of an American city.





Don’t get me wrong though. This city has many things that I love, including our great riverfront parks, mostly easy-to-navigate North/South – East/West grids of the streets, the abundant amount of ethnic areas like Little Italy (who doesn’t love a canoli), and the International Freedom Festival held every year in June/July. And I love how rich in history this area is, especially because my family was a bit part of it. But most of all…

Its flat roads.

Blessings to all,


Day #8 of 31 Days of Gratitude

Okay now it’s getting a bit harder…

Day #8

I’m grateful that despite moving back to Canada, without any job lined up and the possibility of getting one is slim, that I have been able to work remotely for my (previous) employer.

Of course, my extension was more for their benefit than mine – so I could train my replacement / continue to do the job – it’s afforded me the chance to continue to earn some bankable money until such a time when I will be unemployed (and will have no idea for how long).

My job is specialized. Not just anyone can step in and do it. That’s not to say that they can’t eventually learn it – I did – but it’s not the kind of work that someone can just walk in and take over. It requires training – even for those experienced in this type of work – because they have to learn how our office does it. How this position is handled.

So I’m also grateful that I have the experience to be that “go to” person that my office needs to rely on. It does make me feel somewhat important, even if not necessarily appreciated. 🙂

Blessings to all,


Day #7 of 31 Days of Gratitude

Every country has its problems. Some are still fantastic places to live; others…not so much.

Day #7

I’m grateful for my country – Canada.


I’m proud to be a Canadian. Always have been. Always will be. Even when I lived in the US for 20 years because I had married an American, I never gave up my citizenship – and I never planned had planned to.

Canada is, and will always be, my home.

That’s not to say that I wouldn’t love to someday live in other countries – Italy, Scotland, France, The Netherlands – but I don’t think that even those would ever feel like home.

I am embarrassed that I haven’t yet seen much of my country, though admittedly, there is a whole lot to see up in the Territories but ice and snow – and I might be okay with skipping those. But other cities in Canada would be great to see.

I once priced a train ticket from Toronto to the West Coast to Vancouver. What a site that would be!  But what a sticker-shock price tag such a train-ride would be! I think I cruised the Mediterranean for less!

I grew up in Southern Ontario – the southern most part of the country, where the weather is actually reasonable given it’s close proximity to what is referred to as the Mid-West in the U.S. And my hometown – Windsor – is a Jeopardy question:

Which Canadian city is the only city actually south of a US city? 🙂


In any case, Canada is a great country. And anytime anyone is in the area, ring me up – would love to take you to Timmy’s for a double-double and timbits!

from BBS upload



Day #6 of 31 Days of Gratitude

Friends…I’ve had a few…

Day #6

Part of the problem I had when I lived in New York was lack of friends. Sure, I had a few, but they weren’t people that I “hung-out” with very regularly. Truthfully, just about every friend I had, I’d met at work (or Weight Watchers from back when I was married).

I wasn’t one for going out on my own so I never really met anyone or really made new friends (or boyfriends which is an entirely different and much more complex subject) to hang out with. Those I did have, had husbands and/or kids and I had to be cognizant that they had lives, when I really didn’t.

I was lonely a lot.

I realize that it was really on me to not be so lonely. That I should have gone out, met new people, etc. But with the self-consciousness that I had (still have), it really is hard for me to be out in public, especially by myself.

So I was happy when I realized that by moving back to my hometown, I would again be surrounded by many friends, some of whom I’ve been close for over thirty years. And while I am still self-conscious when I’m out, if I’m with my friends, I’m less so.

These are people who have known me for so long, many are basically part of my family. Sisters and brothers that I would do anything for, and I hope they know that.

So I’m so very grateful for my friends – new and old – real or even just my cyber friends (all of whom I hope to meet someday) because they help me feel good about my life. They add a huge something that I can’t explain.

Merci beaucoup, mes amis!


Blessings to all,


Day #5 of 31 Days of Gratitude

When you have as much of a negative attitude as me, it is actually quite hard to come up with things you’re grateful for. And to be honest, I hate that feeling. I really wish I could be more positive, but no matter how much I try, I invariably let the negative in. So this 31 Days of Gratitude, while challenging, is to help me better consider everything I have. Everything I should be grateful for.

And I won’t lie, some of these are going to be very hard.

Day #5

I’m grateful for my marriage falling apart.

Don’t get me wrong. I never wanted a failed marriage (who does?), and while I hate talking about it now because I feel like it’s one of my two biggest mistakes, I’ve also come to realize that I need to be grateful for it.

Grateful for even what my ex-husband did to me.

From the cheating, lying, and disrespect of me to the nefarious handling of our home, its destruction as a direct result of his lack of responsibility, and again, his disrespect of me…guess what?

I not only survived – and there were times I wondered if I would – but I became a stronger person because of it. I learned more about myself during those years than I ever did in the previous 40.

So while it was a horrible period in my life, I am grateful (in a small way – let’s not get carried away) for having gone through it so that I could learn just how strong and resilient of a person I am.

Blessings to all,