Goals Reached

Goals Reached

When I first started this blog it was to meet head on some life goals I wanted to reach.

My main goal was to be a published writer.

Another was to conquer my fear of all the new technology that continues to evolve in our world.

And yet another was to find a place where my thoughts and hopes and dreams were relevant. Especially as I was facing the Empty Nest and the end of my job as an active everyday parent.

I think one of the biggest fears we have as we grow older is that no one will need us anymore. I have discovered in these last 18 months that that will never be true.

My kids will always need me and I will always need them just like I will and still need my parents, and husband and sister and everyone important in my life. And the new generation, with the birth of our first grandchild, will continue the cycle.

And so I have come full circle–so this will be my last post on this blog. Although I doubt it will be the last time I write–now that I am a published writer!

Goals reached are a closing of one door and the opening of another where new goals live to be reached someday…

In my next incarnation I think I will be more active politically to help preserve this country I love so much…although I will continue to work hard to reach our goals of retirement, travel and family.

I have to say I owe this whole journey to one person that has always supported me, encouraged me, argued with me and made me stronger by making me think.

A person who always motivated me to pursue my goals, however difficult or improbable and no matter what the odds. This person also picked me up when I would fall and would spur me on to keep moving forward in my life.

It is because of this person that I reach my goals and continue making new ones.

And he has always been my biggest fan!

So while this is my last post on Empty Nest Savvy, it is certainly not the last goal I plan to reach…

Thanks Dad!

Imagine

Imagine

Imagine what life would be like if no one ever encouraged you, worried about you or cared enough to protect you from the world or from yourself.

I can’t imagine it because from the moment I was born and most likely before the blessed event, I was loved.

I have been cared for and encouraged. I was educated, not just with school books, but lessons of how to behave, cope, treat others and respect myself.

That meant that I was disciplined, or corrected by not just my parents but my aunts and uncles and grandparents. Even my older cousins educated me and even though they were not much older than myself I respected them…as my younger cousins respected me.

Today’s millennials complain about being unloved, disrespected and disinterested in everything that does not have their instant gratification at the forefront.

It is hard to comprehend. Especially since many were raised with encouragement, love and caring.

The difference I believe is in society. Most notably in schools. Over the last 30 to 40 years the schools have been teaching children the opposite of the responsibilities and values taught at home.

Children have grown up thinking they don’t have to do the right thing, just appear to be doing the right thing.

They were taught that doing something wrong is not wrong until you get caught. And if caught the lesson was not about the bad deed but on how to not get caught in the future.

Parents who teach their children values and hold them accountable have been criticized as being harsh and unfeeling.

Children have been given mixed messages for almost 2 generations now.

The result is we have created a whole society that feels they are entitled to everything: jobs, trophies, degrees, love, and acceptance simply by the virtue of them being alive.

There are few young adults today that got through the school and societal indoctrination to become responsible hard working and compassionate people.

Regardless of what was taught at home.

Imagine how different our world would be with more defined rights and wrongs. Where children were loved and supported yes, but educated in such a way that respect for themselves and others was not lost.

Just imagine.

Losing Track of Time

Time flies when your having fun…or seen another way, when we lose track of time it means we are content, engaged and dare I say…happy!

That is what happened to me this weekend. I lost track of time. And it was wonderful.

After working all week my husband and I took a short trip “home”. While we live in a new city now and love it, there is always a wonderful feeling when we go home.

At home, we spent time with family especially my sister and her kids who are growing so fast. I enjoyed my parents and got to spend time with one of the daughters that has flown the nest.

I marvel at how independent we all are now and at the same time so dependent on each other–in good way.

As I mentioned, the trip was short because on Sunday we were on our way back, enjoying the beautiful day and the open road and the calm and quiet of our empty nest that not too long ago I was dreading having.

What threw me off was I had Monday off for Martin Luther King Jr. Day. (Thank you Dr. King!). I took the day slowly and did my chores and enjoyed a relaxing day. I was at peace in our daily routine…

And I lost track of time…

I forgot today was Tuesday, beginning the work week. I missed posting my self imposed scheduled post this morning.

So I am saving that one for Thursday to share this message with you…strive from time to time to lose track of time.

The time that is past we can never get back–how wonderful when it passes us in joy!!

A Christmas Story

A Christmas Story

While my favorite Christmas movie is It’s a Wonderful Life, and my husband is kind enough to watch it with me each year–it is NOT his favorite Christmas movie.

My husband’s favorite Christmas movie doesn’t have a romantic, spiritual or an especially moralistic message.

In fact, the first time I saw his favorite: A Christmas Story–I was surprised that this movie would be popular at all.

The entire plot revolves around a young boy who is dreaming of receiving a bb gun from Santa at Christmas as he goes through his daily life in the weeks leading up to the holiday.

I just didn’t think it was funny–or good.

The 2nd year I watched the movie (we actually watched it twice since there was A Christmas Story Marathon), I noticed different details in the movie and enjoyed hearing my husband laugh as he watched.

And now, years later, as we watch his favorite I find myself laughing and looking forward to the scenes of 9 year old Ralphie battling a school bully, a mean Santa at the mall and convincing his clueless parents to get him the ultimate Christmas gift.

I love seeing him dressed up in his pink bunny pajamas and dealing with his little baby brother…

And while this movie is not my favorite movie of all time at Christmas, it is part of my tradition because my husband enjoys it so much that it makes me enjoy it too!

Ultimately it reminds me the importance of the season: joy, family, laughter, togetherness, and the blessing of living this American life that allows us to celebrate and enjoy the holiday in any way we choose.

Enjoy your own Christmas Story!

Deck The Halls

Deck The Halls

It has become our family tradition to put up the Christmas tree and the decorations the weekend after Thanksgiving.

Since the birdies have left the nest, it was just me and the hubby doing the honors.

I have always liked an artificial tree and my husband prefers a real tree–and over the years we have had both, but I finally convinced him that an artificial tree is better for us because of our (read my) allergies and the mess of pine needles a real tree leaves behind.

So last year we bought one that even has the lights already on it!

While I was at it, I also bought all new ornaments in a country theme–and the results were spectacular.

To top it off my husband surprised me with a beautiful old fashioned country angel for the top!

So this year I was very excited to put it all up again!

We set up the tree and my 3 (count them! 3!) nativity sets and we were very pleased with the results.

A pleasant hush came over the house as even the doggies were impressed with the decorations!

It is really the simple things in life that makes all the difference in our hurry up run around life.

This time of year reminds me of the importance of family and traditions.

But it also reminds me how wonderful this American life is that we can have traditions about a tree and a barn that promises love, hope and charity to close out each year.

For This I Am Thankful

For This I Am Thankful

There is nothing like getting older to really put your life in perspective and to show you how to be humble, grateful and thankful for all we have.

And there is no better time than Thanksgiving to reflect and share those thoughts with others.

I am thankful for my family. My mom and dad who gave me life, good examples, education and purpose. My sister, who is not just family but my trusted friend. My husband who travels this journey with me as confidant, companion, friend and champion. Our daughters who have taught us the importance of living. My nieces and nephews that renew my motherhood. And all the other family members and friends who have added to my development and joy to be who I am today.

I am thankful to be an American, to live in a country that is free, strong and prosperous. A country in which we have a right to our lives, our liberty and to pursue our individual happiness.

I am thankful to all our military, past and present, who are willing to lay their life down to preserve the values of our founding fathers and keep our way of life alive.

And I am thankful for God who made all of this possible.

Wherever you are and whoever you are with–Have a blessed Thanksgiving!

Liberation Day

Liberation Day

Some of the most important things I have learned in life I learned from my parents.

I have been very fortunate to have parents that were always present, involved and encouraging .

They taught me to depend on them while I grew into my own independence.

Likewise, it was my goal, as a parent, to be present and guiding but to make sure my children could stand on their own two feet.

And like my parents, we did a good job because just like I became stubbornly independent in my 20s, so too have the girls become independent.

My dad calls it Liberation Day! It truly was liberating for all of us.

The girls now liberated were taking those first scary steps into adulthood and we, the parents, are also liberated to continue with our lives, goals and dreams outside of parenthood.

But it does not end there. My father in declaring Liberation Day shows his pride in the passing of the torch to the next generation.

So today I celebrate that we have made it to this point in time, with gratitude and high hopes for the future!

Happy Liberation Day!