Tag Archives: maui

My life amounts to no more than one drop in a limitless ocean. Yet what is any ocean, but a multitude of drops?

As we near the end of another year and I look back on the 365 days that just passed, I am astounded at everything I set out to accomplish and did. It was a busy, full year with so many wonderful high moments and some terribly low ones as well, just to balance everything out. I am grateful for every experience; I learned and took away something important from each event. I know that the hard learned lessons toward the end of this year only mean better, more open roads lie ahead.

I made some positive lifestyle choices at the start of 2013, after we returned from our fantastic holiday in Maui. Becoming vegan, exercising more regularly, painting more and making time for myself were all things I focused on: all things I needed and continue to work into my busy life. I’m much happier and healthier these days.

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Mid 2013, our eldest daughter finished high school (with honours) and started college in the Fall. This Christmas, after a successful first semester, she decided her heart is just not in the program she is pursuing so she applied to University a few days ago. She’ll use the coming months to work and travel. This was a surprise to us, but we support her decision whole-heartedly: better to pursue your passion.


My younger daughter also applied to University a few days ago. After 9 years, she also made the decision to put her competitive horse riding passion on the back burner so that she could focus on her studies. This was a very hard and very mature decision for her to make since she put so much time, money and effort into the sport. It was equally hard for me as I was her groom and cheering section the past many years and watched her grow and blossom as a competitive rider. I’m not going to lie: I cried when we packed up her gear and left the barn earlier in the week. I guess the upside is that we have fantastic memories, especially from this last year.

I guess the hardest change this year happened 2 weeks ago when my father passed away. He had been fighting cancer these past 5 years and had steadily declined. He was lucky to have had the 5 years with my mother as we never thought he’d make it this far. My father was really my stepfather who adopted my sister and I when I was 7 years old and he was really the only father we ever knew. But we were not close. In fact, he was very hard on my sister and I and when our step brothers were born, 6 years later, the gap between him and us really grew. It’s a very complicated and emotional story that has left me quite confused as I sort through a plethora of feelings and deal with his death. All these feelings are overshadowed by a great deal of sympathy towards my mother, who is struggling daily with the loss of her other half.

Ultimately, these closing of doors has had me deeply pondering my existence, the choices I make and our finite existence. I have been looking to many philosophers and teachings for answers and direction and searching deeply within myself. At times, I have felt very alone and completely lost and have found much comfort in the heart felt notes, short letters and messages from the people around me. My friends and students have been so supportive and kind and have really comforted me. I have come to realize that I cannot control everything and sometimes I just have to lie back and let things flow and take care of themselves. They will because they have to and that’s okay. I really have to learn to let go and trust the universe.

I have a lot of plans for 2014 but in keeping with the whole new letting-go concept, I will simply throw them out there into the universe and trust that they will take shape. Happy New Year my friends.


True Life is Lived When Tiny Changes Occur.


I can honestly say that my trip to Maui has been a life-changing event. It has altered the life I have come back to because this trip has altered how I feel about life and what my priorities are and how I want to continue living from here on in. I realize now, more than ever, how important it is (for me) to be positive, grateful and focused on where I need to be (physically and emotionally). I want to live a long time and I want to live a good life and feel good about where I am and what I am doing. I love life and don’t believe in an after-life so I have to make sure that the rest of my life really counts.

I feel like the sun coming up over Haleakala, at 10,000 feet on our last day on the island, was a reawakening for me. For the first time in a long time, I could see/can see clearly. I feel renewed and reborn and intensely hopeful and excited.

I want to simplify my life — what I own, what I purchase and what I need. I want to concentrate more on travelling and being healthy and happy. As the saying goes (and I am a big fan of sayings), “ I don’t want to get to the end of my life and find that I have just lived the length of it; I want to live the width of it as well.” The beauty of life is that every day you wake up to a new day so if you don’t get it right today, you have every tomorrow to try again. Life shouldn’t be about work and pay cheques and stress and deadlines. It should be about new experiences, true friends who come along for the ride and finding what makes you really happy. This is the life I want.


My crazy family, loves of my life.

The secret to a rich life is to have more beginnings than endings.


I’m not going to lie, I sincerely believe I am sitting in the most beautiful place on earth. It’s been five days of sight-seeing, swimming, snorkeling and taking in the beauty of my surroundings and I am still overwhelmed with Maui. Thankfully, we still have five more days of exploring ahead of us and there is still so much more to see.

I have never welcomed in a new year in another country, so far from home — although I have been in a plane en route to my home at the stroke of midnight. Welcoming in a new year, in a new place that is this beautiful really feels like you are resetting and starting again, fresh. It gives you opportunity to reflect on the last year and really plan for the new one ahead. This year, 2013, will certainly be a very busy, interesting one with many new starts, for my family and I. I’m excited! Our eldest daughter will be starting college this year. Our younger daughter will be finishing up her last year of high school and looking at University programs. My husband will be starting a new job and we will be doing more travelling this year. I am astounded at how much older our little girls are, what wonderful young women they are and am so very grateful for how close we all are.

As with any new year, I have resolutions, hopes and goals. My friend Janet posted her own resolutions on her blog and it made me think that this public pledge was a great idea. Doing this helps keep you honest, on track and accountable. Following suit, my 2013 resolutions this year are:

  1. Put more time/effort into being healthy and working out. I need to have a more consistent schedule overall and make time for my well-being. I don’t do that enough and with heart disease in my family, it’s kind of important to me. I resolve to work out more consistently.
  2. Make more personal art. I had such a great year of painting in 2012. It was SO rewarding on so many levels (met people, sold stuff, bettered my talents, learned things) and I want to continue that trend. I already have reference material for a new series so this year I resolve to paint more.
  3. Prioritize. I try to do everything for everyone and end up exhausted and frustrated (a lot of the time). Don’t get me wrong, I like being busy and I love helping people but this year I resolve to pick my charities more carefully and give of myself more prudently.
  4. Learn/try new things outside of my comfort zone. I’m such a creature of habit. Like most people, I tend to play it safe and stick to learning things just beyond my reach but I never extend my reach out too far. As I get older, I recognize this is happening more and more. So, this year, I resolve to reach way outside of my comfort zone to learn/try new things. I’m not sure what they are going to be but I resolve to look for more opportunities to expand my knowledge base.

I think that list is a good starting point and all points are attainable. I am off to the beach to look for marine life. Yesterday morning we were lucky enough to watch a sea turtle snack on some plant life about 5 metres from the beach. With our underwater gopro camera, we managed to get some spectacular photos. I mean, I can’t imagine taking any bad photos here. Aloha!