Photo by: Natalie Collins, Unsplash

Because All My Weekend Plans Start With Coffee

If we were having coffee, I would tell that it’s been really busy in my part of the world. And when things get like that, I go back to the basics – sleep and then coffee. Today, we are having a quick cup of coffee, while we catch up. A drink and run if you will, but I’m still going to brew in my usual Saturday slow routine.

Let’s see how did the week go? It was a four-day work week for us Trinis, as Monday was a holiday. However, there were are two things to know about that: 1. Four-day work weeks such when you have deadlines. It means that your those four days actually feel like seven. And 2. We spent Monday being anxious and a little afraid, because we were under a tropical storm watch.

Not So Fun Fact: The storm was named Bret. The last time a tropical storm named Bret was headed our way was in 1993. Tropical Storm Bret was one of the deadliest storms to ever hit our very close neighbour Venezuela and the fact that 2017 Bret seemed to be headed directly for us, was a major source of worry on Monday.

Long rainy night and story short, the storm came with heavy rains and gusty winds. Some parts of Trinidad suffered flooding and homes were damaged. Some parts of our country fared better than others. Most of us were grateful that the impact was not any worse.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that once the storm passed, I was out to work on Tuesday for the start of the longest short work week evah! But I survived, powered by many cups of coffee.

Moving On

Speaking of work and the reason we are having a quick cuppa and catch up this week, I am moving to a new department effective July 01st. Now normally it is tough to ensure that everything is ready for handover, be on top of your work (because the work continues) and say goodbye to the team you have grown to enjoy working with for the better part of four years. But trying to do all of that, in a month with three consecutive four-day weeks…is near impossible.

As a result of enjoying those extra days at home, I am heading into the office today, to get some things done without the distraction of ringing phones and deadline. So sorry to brew and run, but tell me your news and we will catch up fully when the dust settles. What’s happening in your world?

Tell me in the comments below.  

#WeekendCoffeeShare is an awesome link-up where coffee is being shared over great conversations. Join in this week’s fun here.

Writing Quote

Photo by: Alvaro Serrano, Unsplash

Confession: I collect quotes, Kindle ebooks and more recently, plants. Whoohoo green thumb!

It is also no secret that I admire and would love to have coffee with Joan Didion. She has been a professional writer for over 50 years, and she definitely knows a thing or five about writing and living.

I met Joan in the pages of her book, The Year of Magical Thinking about seven years ago, just after my mum died. It was a memoir of her own journey with grief after the sudden death of her husband. The book made me think and certainly made me appreciate grief and other people’s journey with grief. I was so struck by her words, I’ve been playing catch up, reading more of her work since.

Reading her work and collecting quotes along the way. Today, I’m sharing some of my favourites with you:

On staying present to the present:

‘Life changes in the instant. The ordinary instant.’ The Year of Magical Thinking, 2005

On writing to remember:

‘Memory fades, memory adjusts, memory conforms to what we think we remember.’ Blue Nights, 2011

On grief as a journey and the importance of empathy – who feels it knows it:

‘Grief turns out to be a place none of us know until we reach it.’ The Year of Magical Thinking, 2005

On starting:

‘There’s a point when you go with what you’ve got. Or you don’t go.’ The Paris Review, fall-winter 1978

On moving on:

‘I have already lost touch with a couple people I used to be…’ Slouching Towards Bethlehem, 1968

 Joan’s work and her importance as a female essayist, continues to inspire me. It is tough work this writing and living and being seen. I would love to hear from you, share some of your favourite quotes below!

 

To Do List, Do What You Say You're Going To Do

I am so ashamed.

Yesterday I published a post that was incomplete, just so that I could say, I hit “publish”. I will admit, I was tired and the day’s errands got the better of me. So by the time I sat down to get my post together, I could barely keep my eyes open.

I sorta started writing it and it wasn’t flowing and I was like eff it I will publish as is and come back later and do some edits. Which I did. But I don’t feel good about it. I think that if you’re going to do anything, you don’t half ass it, you use your whole ass.

For the record I really wanted to substitute the actual cuss words for the word cuss, as I have been doing in my posts lately. But as I have learned while driving in my island paradise home of Trinidad &Tobago, sometimes the only thing to make you feel better after a bad drive, is a loud and very satisfying FFFF!!!

But I digress.

Do What You Say You’re Going To Do

So, I was delinquent with my coffee share post yesterday. To make up for it, I decided to read all of the posts in the #weekendcoffeeshare link-up aaaand leave a meaningful comment on each post.  I’m 19 for 19 at the moment. I feel mighty proud of myself too.

Tough work, this reading 19 blogs and leaving a meaningful comment. I’m having a cuppa while I’m doing it, just to make the “work” lighter. The great thing about sharing over coffee, is the snap shot you get into the lives of other people all around the world. You cannot beat this blogging community for that. And I love it.

Always Follow Through No Matter What

Today’s commitment to reading and commenting on all the blogs in the link-up taught me a little bit about myself. I honestly wanted to give up mid-way. 19 blogs to read and comment on…is a lot of blogs and a lot of comments. And I mean, who would know if I just hit “like” and kept it moving? Who would know about my little commitment to read all the blogs, right?

Follow through. That’s what kept me going. I would know that I made a promise to myself and didn’t keep it. And if I could compromise on this little thing, I’m leaving myself open for bigger compromises. Always follow through. Don’t do it some of the time. Or when it feels good or is convenient. Always.Do.It.

So my friends, do exactly what you say you’re going to do. Every time, without fail. You’ll be happier for it.

7 for (1)

Youuuu guysss!!! July is my favourite month of the year! It’s my birthday month ya’ll and I’m super excited for all this month and the next year of my life has to offer and I’m even more excited (if that were even possible) to with you my SEVEN for this week:

Rainy days. I love the rain. I love rainy days and snuggling deeper under the covers. And I get to sing to the annoyance of those around me…”Here comes the rain gain…”

Saying YES. I made a commitment to myself this year that I will say yes to experiences that put me in the same room with like minded people who will inspire me to be a better me. I had one of those experiences this week. I accepted an invitation to a book launch and that one YES has lead to so many great opportunities I almost cannot believe it.

JULY!!! It’s my birthday month!

Trying new things. My gym has started TRX Training and after being encouraged by friends I decided to give it a try. OH.EM.GEE. DEATH!!! What my “friends” failed to mention is that TRX was born in the Navy Seals and it uses your body weight and gravity to complete the exercises. I started the class with some trepidation but I still was not ready. I thought I was going to die. I felt like I wanted to throw up for an hour afterward. Rivers of sweat mixed with tears…thank the Lord for the sweat because it was a class where the men outnumbered the women – almost unheard of in my gym and really that bit alone should have tipped me off. This shit was VERY hard…arms, legs and brain was quivering from the shock afterward. All this to impress upon you that TRX is NOT for the lazy. You will die. And it does not end there…the morning after the workout, I tried to swing my legs off the bed to get up and start my day…I had to look back for my legs. You will die. And for the rest of the week you will ache from your neck down. But you will want to do it again. Because…the shock wears off and the aches subside and you feel great about yourself (You didnt actually die) and then you have try it again, if only to prove to yourself that you can.

Chocolate cake. Because yes! Always YES. (And I deserved it after that TRX class)

Good friends I am blessed to have surrounded myself with really good people who tell it like it is. Always reminding me that “good work speaks for itself” whenever I start doubting myself and start worrying that I might not being enough.

172 days to Christmas…how you like them apples and grapes and presents and fireworks and BAM! the year is over. Get started. Every success story, started with a first day. You dont have to get it right…just get it going. A lesson I have been learning as I push myself out of my comfort zone and face my fears.

My hope is that by paying attention to the little things, the every day details that make up all the blessings in my life and by sowing the seeds of faith and gratitude, I can truly carry with me and reap the rewards of “positivity + balance + bliss” throughout the days ahead.

Thank you for reading, I appreciate you! This is me blowing some glitter and confetti on you because you’re super blessed to have received the gift of another 86,400 seconds today, to spend any way you desire.

Make those seconds count!

I love hearing from you…what are you grateful today? What made you smile? Feel free to share below!

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I read a whole lot. A fact you wouldn’t know because the number of reviews published on this blog is not a true reflection of the number of books I actually read…another case of my Drafts Folder working overtime.

Anyhoo, I was fortunate to read books this year that moved me in a very real way, so much that they left a lasting impression on me and my life. And then of course there were the duds but thankfully not very many.

The most influential book I read this year was I Will Teach You To Be Rich by Ramit Sethi. Getting my finances in order was a major priority over the last 12 months and this book provided much-needed guidance on doing just that.

The Darkest ChildMy OH-EM-GEE-I-LOOOOVE-THIS book for 2014 is The Darkest Child by Delores Phillips. This book was a page-turner I devoured in eight hours…I shit you not! It was that good.

Unfortunately, I learned that the author, Delores died earlier this year. So there is no chance of a follow-up story or even reaching out to her for answers. I have so many questions. But such is life. SO now I have to be content with recommending it to everybody and hoping to start a conversation about it.

This writing business is soul work sometimes and it takes a whole lot out of you most times. The book that helped me hone my writing craft is Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott. It just may be my absolute favourite book on writing.

One of the gifts of being a writer is that it gives you an excuse to do things, to go places and explore. Another is that writing motivates you to look closely at life, at life as it lurches by and tramps around. – Anne Lamott

The book I reread this year and totally recommend is The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch. It’s the kind of book you want to reread every year…if only as a reminder that life is short. Get busy living NOW.

Honorable mention goes to Wishing for Wings by Debbie Jacob because it changed my perspective on a forgotten bunch of young men in Trinidad & Tobago.

Debbie is a local author who taught English to young men imprisoned for crimes that included murder and robbery. I had the awesome pleasure of meeting the author and being able to get some of my questions answered. This book was truly an eye-opener and I will write a review on soon. It is a definite must read.

The book I started at the beginning of the year, and is still reading…because ironically I find it absolutely boring is The Interestings by Meg Wolitzer. It’s long and kinda meh. I hope to finish it before the end of the year…not holding my breath though.

Already on my reading list for 2015:

And now it’s your turn.

Tell me, what books have you read this year, that you recommend I put on my reading list for 2015?