So you can read my books

Sunday, January 8, 2017


Sunday I worked 13 hours straight, 

my power & internet went down, 

and one of my front teeth broke off at the gumline --

And the dentist tells me he has to work out a payment schedule with my work insurance 

before he repairs it.


Empty bank accounts, tight waistlines, vomiting bugs, failed detoxes: 

(Guys, it's not a hangover.  It's called alcohol poisoning.)

The post-holiday comedown is a well-dreaded condition. 

January, even at its best, has few redeeming features.

 {At least we in S.W. Louisiana have the Mardi Gras to look forward to.}


Ah, last week:


This time last week, it was a bright, crisp New Year’s Day. 

Feeling optimistic about the months ahead, two-thirds of us made at least one resolution: 

to eat less, to drink less, to get fit. 

Yet, according to a survey by researchers at the University of Bristol, 88 per cent of us will soon break them. 

Half of us already have.  




Let's face it: 

most of us had a hard time of it last year.  

We managed to pull it together somehow, put on the brave Christmas face --

Now, we are smack at the beginning once more, looking at running the gauntlet all over again.



New Year's Eve can be a time of reflection, looking back over the last year ... 

or our whole lives -- and seeing all the plans and dreams cast aside on the shoulder of our life paths.


So what can we do to get through the yblues?

1.) Most important: make plans for the coming months.

    Organize something you can look forward to. 

    Be creative: watch a movie; listen to music; go for a run. 

    The sun might not be shining – and the lack of sunlight is one factor that’s making us feel sad –

     but get outside and swing yourself about a bit. 

     It’ll make you feel so much better.


2.) Positive Perspective is key.

     Dress brightly – even for work. 

     Everything’s so gloomy and dull outside that it’ll make people happy to see someone wearing bright colors. 

     Find yourself frowning?  Force a smile.  Studies show that putting on a grin will unconsciously make you feel more up.

3.) Use the prevailing winds.

     Last year was tough for you, right?  But you made it through!



It's seems impossible that sailors can move forward with the wind blowing against them, doesn't it?

     How do they do that?

     On a sailboat, wind blowing against the boat at an angle inflates the sail, 

     and it forms a similar foil shape to an airplane's wing, 

creating a difference in pressure that pushes the sail perpendicular to the wind direction.


4.) Your mind is your sail.

     It determines the course you sail through life.  

     You must learn how to mentally "tack," 

a term sailors use to describe how they shift the sail 

so the wind blows into a different side of the sail.

      There are people in this world that would give their left hand to be right where you are -- 

     with the blessings you are too familiar with to be thankful for.

     Your struggles have made you smarter, stronger, and more aware of what you can do.


5.) Take a moment to realize that you are still here.

     And that is an extraordinary achievement given the pain that you’ve been through.


6.) Focus on what you're facing and what you're running from.

      What is just one simple step you can take 

      to maybe move towards the problem rather than away from it? 

     When you step towards problems they shrink, 

     and they become more manageable.


7.) Be kind to yourself.

     If you had a best friend in a similar situation, what would your advice be?

     I bet it would be: 

     "Ease up yourself, friend.  You've done a great job with a lousy situation."

I hope this has helped in some small way, your friend - Roland


  1. Of course your post has helped me, Roland--it always does! Hope you lose the weight this year, if that's what you want (it can't be that much!) and that life only gets better and better for you.

    I like what you said about wearing more colors. I've already resolved to wear more of my prettier clothes instead of just the stuff I grab first thing in the morning.

    1. What we see in the mirror affects us more than we believe ... which is why I always squint!

      Not too much weight. I've almost lost enough! :-)

  2. Hi Roland - keep a chin-up mode is helpful ... so many others are in a much worse situation - but seeing the wood for the trees is difficult at times ... Smile and be positive with others, as you say look forward to achieving small things, which lead to adding to the puzzle of achievement. I do hope 2017 is easier for you ... and for me! Cheers and with thoughts - Hilary

    1. You are so right, Hilary. Life is a mosaic made up of the moments we take time to notice and remember. I pray 2017 is easier on all of us!!

  3. Wonderful advice! Agree with Hilary--cheers to 2017.

  4. New Year's Eve/Day has long been just another day to me. I make/keep resolutions/goals one day at a time. I try to keep them simple, things I know I can accomplish in the time I allot otherwise they will get lost in the dust bunnies of my mind.

    Being kind to ourselves and others is the most important thing of all.

    1. Impossible goals just make us feel worse when we naturally fail to achieve them, right?

      Kindness is the one thing that the world never gets enough of!

  5. My mind is a sail and I'm a leaf on the wind...
    Sorry about your tooth! Chipping off a chunk of tooth is one of the worst feelings.

    1. You and Wash from Firefly. :-)

      Yes, I am not going to smile for awhile lest folks stare at me even more than they already do!

  6. It was just another day, but I did indeed look forward to it. It was oddly a bit like finishing a loathsome project this year. Whew, next please!
    Aw, sorry about your tooth and all. And congratulations on the anthology inclusion - silver lining maybe?
    Sunnyside up - great post!

    1. There is always a Yin to the the Yang of our lives. Yes, I will hope my acceptance in the anthology is the start of a great 2017. May your New Year be the best ever! :-)

  7. I have reviewed The Not So Innocents Abroad, Roland at amazon and on my blog. Enjoyed it very much! And re-this post, I am one of those who dislikes Jan and Feb - dull winter months and then it's tax time. I look forward to Spring each year as the year rises from its doldrums. Hope the tooth gets fixed, it's always something, isn't it?

    1. Thank you so much for the review and the blog post! I spent most of the day with dreary life chores so I have not read them yet!

      Thank you so much!

      Jan is grim around here, but Feb the trees begin to bud again. We don't have much of a winter down here!! Thanks again!!

  8. It's all in our attitude. We can look at it with gloom or look at it with hope.

    I hope you can get your tooth fixed soon. I once cracked two on one kernel of popcorn. Two crowns at once. It wasn't much fun.

    1. Two at once?! Ouch! I guess you don't do popcorn anymore!!

      Abraham Lincoln wrote that we are as happy as we set our minds to be. See? You and he share the same mind-set.

      Fixing my tooth is somewhat down the line. Money. It can't buy happiness, but try being sick without it!

  9. Believe me I'm keeping your list at hand. We're in the middle of a major--I've never seen anything like--storm. No electricity for hours. Trees down all over the place. Cold because the darned heater won't work. Can't get to the woodpile because the area is flooded. Seriously? This is CA and we were in a drought a few months ago. Anyway, making hay while the sun shines and posting a comment to say hi and thanks and so long, it's been good to know you--just in case I get washed away.

    1. As a survivor of too many hurricanes, I understand about flooded cities.

      Ten years we has an ice storm that shut down the city as ice-burdened branches tore down power lines.

      People were trapped in their homes for several days.

      I will say a prayer that the Father keeps the worst at bay from you. Let me know how you are doing, will you? I will worry until then. :-(

  10. Winning at the casino usually cheers me up. Happy New Year.

    1. But how much money do you lose there before you win? Ouch! :-)