Search This Blog

Saturday, December 30, 2023

Happy 2024

A whole year has gone by and I don’t have a way to measure what I did with my time. It all seems to have gone by so quickly. I have never been too focused on a new year’s resolution, because I believe we can set goals at any point in time. But after listening to Jim Rohn (see video below), an entrepreneur and motivational speaker who passed away in 2009, I decided to try something new. I set some goals for myself and will measure them after one year to test the process and see if it works. I mean, my goals have always been in my head, and now I want to bring them down on paper.
Writing goals down is like that written to do list. I find that when I keep my to do list in a visible spot on my desk, I’m more likely to get them done. People who work in an office have it a bit easier because their lives are more structured. But for those of us who work in a creative environment, life is trickier. We need to add structure to our lives or we will just drift through life.

It’s important to have a morning and night routine. These routines send a signal to the brain to get moving, the day has started or to shut down, it’s time to go to bed. I have never been a structured person and go with the flow, but this is not exactly the best method. We need some structure in our lives. Not everything has to be on a list or planned. However, if we have no structure at all, we end up wasting time, and time is too valuable to lose.
I like to keep things simple, otherwise I will get overwhelmed and not do them at all. After doing some research into how I’m going to keep my goals in front of me on a daily basis, I decided to purchase a planner. There are many YouTubers discussing planners and talking about how they do things. Sometimes, it can get confusing, and I was looking for an uncomplicated method. I want to share my easy process in case anyone is interested in setting goals for themselves. Also, I opted for paper instead of digital organizer because I like it better.

I listened to Jim’s video and set some goals.

I did a brain dump by writing all the things that I need to take care of on sheets of paper. The above and the next few pix are samples for the purpose of this blog. Obviously, my brain dump is much longer than that.
I numbered my list according to category.
I created a master list.
I purchased an easy planner on Amazon, and no, I do not get paid for promoting this. I watched their posted videos, read some of the reviews, and realized this is what works for me. This organizer comes with instructions. I may read it or not, because it’s self-explanatory. I transferred my master list to the blank pages on the organizer, and added items from the master list to daily, weekly, and monthly tasks.

What I like about this planner is that I can fill in my own dates, it has plenty of blank pages which helps me to add more items to my master list, as well as add my three-, five-, and ten-year goals. Plus, it has a vision board, and monthly reviews of goals. This is also a good way to keep all paperwork, cut up pieces of paper, and sticky notes in one place.


And that’s it. The only other thing I would say is that I don’t add more than five items to do to my daily plan. If I get those done, then I can always add more. This way, I make sure that I get at least five items out of the way. Also, I do something about reaching my goals daily. For example, if I want to finish writing my book in a year, I write at least three pages a day. If I want to be a healthy person, I add vegetables to each meal and do some kind of activity every day. And I know that I may mess up and miss a day here and there, but as long as I keep at it, I’m okay with that.

So, Happy New Year. What are your goals, plans, and dreams? Where will you be in a year? I hope that all good things will come your way in 2024.

Thursday, December 21, 2023

Merry Christmas/Happy Holidays 2023

For this post, I drove around L.A’s middle class neighborhoods to take photos of home decorations, mostly from outside, a few from a yard of a friend, and one from the house of someone I know.

I edited the pictures a bit to hide people’s addresses and streets where they live for privacy reasons.
To do this, I had to wait until it got dark outside. Problem was, I noticed some cars slowing down, and people looking at me, wondering if I was casing a house.
One or two homeowners looked out their windows to see what the heck I was doing so close to their house. But, I don’t understand this at all. Because when you decorate the outside of your home, you also want to make your street look more festive, and passersby to admire it.

Anyhow, I tried to take my pictures quickly without getting arrested. That is why you see some blurry photos. Sorry! I tried to be creative with this post, but perhaps capturing festive images of people’s homes wasn’t one of my brightest ideas. I hope that you will enjoy my efforts, anyway.

So, Happy Holidays and lots of love to everyone. I hope that you will find some joy in the season. I know that the holidays can be hard on some people for various reasons. And if you find it difficult to cope, have a cup of hot coco, and grab your favorite book, or watch an old movie, and enjoy.
Below is one of my favorite songs during this time of year. It always makes me want to sing along and feel like a child again. So sing, be a kid, and be jolly…

Sunday, December 10, 2023

The Honolulu Marathon and Katie Save



My niece, Elnaz aka Ellie, is in Hawaii, and sent me a bunch of photos which I’m sharing here. The hotel upgraded her room to an ocean view because she was participating in the Honolulu Marathon. The reason she is there is a friend of hers committed suicide due to mental health issues. Her parents set up a charity called KatieSave. My Niece is helping raise funds for the charity to bring awareness about anxiety, depression, and mental health issues among students. A bunch of us are making donations based on each mile Ellie ran.


The first day, she took some pictures and basically crashed. She usually zonks out on an airplane, but she said that there was a father/daughter duo, the girl had too much to drink, and talked loud as Ellie learned about her entire life story. Then the two people seated next to her had to constantly pee, and she had to keep getting up. So, yeah. No peace for her until she got to her hotel.


On the second day, she registered, and then went out to eat her favorite food, poke with octopus. She also sent a photo of a vegetarian/vegan place which looked yum.

Surfer boys around Ellie’s age. She loves Hawaii and the people. In fact, my family used to vacation at North Shore all the time. I’ve been to Honolulu, Hilo, and Kona, but never to North Shore. My brother keeps pushing me to go. But I’m more of a city person than an island person, and like to travel on my own. When we were younger, my family and family friends used to take beach vacations and had an amazing time. So, who knows? Maybe one of these days I will join him and his family to revisit Hawaii or go somewhere tropical.
Ellie is an exceptional athlete, but she lost her mojo for a longtime. She is extremely competitive. Even at five years old, she would get upset if she was losing.
Her competitiveness helped her win many awards, and her room was always packed with trophies. She even won President’s award for educational excellence, and attended NYU as a premed student. But her competitiveness eventually caught up with her, and at some point, got in her way.
She is doing much better now, and instead of always pushing to win awards, she is taking time to balance her life. She was not prepared for this marathon, because she hadn’t been running much lately, but she was okay with that. Also, sometimes she would sabotage all her hard work the night before a race. This time she did everything right, went on a moderate hike, loaded up on pasta, hydrated, and got plenty of R&R before her big day.

On Sunday, December 10, in honor of the marathon, Honolulu started with fireworks at 4 a.m. before the start of the event at 5:30. Ellie sent me a link, and shared her location as she ran. I’m not a morning person, but got up early to support her. She ran at a comfortable pace. Her goal was not so much to win, but rather to start, enjoy the journey, finish, and raise funds.

About 8 miles before the finish line, she texted me and said that she was dying. I threw numbers at her about how close she was to finishing. The last mile and a half were super hard because it was all uphill. Imagine running for 24.5 miles, and all the sudden you must run uphill. But she made it, and at the end, she was both exhausted and excited that she did it. Now it's time for all of us to pay up, in memory of Katie.