Sunday, January 17, 2010

The Christmas Cottage

"Old Age is like everything else, to make a success of it, you have to start young." Fred Astaire

...just a thought
I wanted to share a bit of my first Christmas at my antique cottage. ( Photo right is the river stone fireplace in the living room. Above, more living room shots.Additional photos to follow, too!)

Just at the end of our renovations, the holidays approached and Christmas at the Cottage was on track.

Heather and her family purchased our 1763 antique farmhouse this past traditions for that home began the instant the kids chose their bedrooms! New life has been infused in that grand old home.

For me, it was time to down size. Why would I do that at the height of my Real Estate career? Well, when I am truly old (no I am not there yet - my Dad is 92 and I expect to reach or surpass this fine age, myself), I want to be debt free, own lots of income properties, and feel safe from 'the storms' life rolls in.

It is hard to believe that we spend most of our waking hours setting goals, working hard to make enough money to 'move up', buying bigger houses, more know, we all do it.

I am not sure exactly how old I was when the quiet whispers of old age began to creep into my brain. Was it when I had my first aching back? When my dad decided to stop driving his car? When I looked in the mirror and saw my mother and grandmother's faces staring back at me?

I am really not sure, but when the littlest of hints started 'screaming' in my ear, I figured I needed a plan! And so once again, I changed the direction of my life, developed a plan, and began forecasting my next move!

I found an endearing little cottage that was owned by the most engaging family. And as luck would have it, they were ready to move, too. So there I stood, captivated by this enchanting cottage...and I bought it. Now, two years later, we are in, loving it and everyday I wonder why I ever needed anything bigger than this miniature house. There is a place for everything and everything has its place.

I have nicknamed it The Christmas Cottage, simply because I am perpetually in a state of happiness, everyday of the year!!!

At the beginning finding a little antique cottage was just a it is a reality.

Believe in things and they will materialize. Make a plan, then work the plan, and you will find yourself exactly where you want to be, doing exactly what you want to be was just a thought.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

It was just a thought

"For everything you have missed, you have gained something else, and for everything you gain, you lose something else." Ralph Waldo Emerson

It has been a long time since I have picked up my pen (so to speak) in preparation of creating my newspaper column, ...just a thought. For more than seven years I penned a weekly column that brought out my own inner thoughts and transferred them to my loyal readers. I inadvertently inspired many of those readers to reach out and grab what life had to offer. I wrote about my family, my goals, my friends, our triumphs and our defeats. My readers were with me every step of the way. I guess you could say it was my weekly blog (although that word did not even exist back then).
Now, thanks to my daughter, Heather, it is time to get back to writing. The paper has been sold and I have another career, Real Estate (we will get into that later). I love what I am doing, and I have gained so much from the people I have met, but I truly miss my quiet writing time when inspiration is my only goal.
What is there to miss about writing? Well, I always felt good after I signed off for the week. I believed that if I touched at least one person, if I had made one person smile, or recall a distant memory, I was successful (being successful in life, well that is another story!).
Let's talk about loss for a minute. This morning Shawn Hornbeck appeared on The Today Show. At age 11 he was abducted and tortured for more than 4 years. Shawn and his family lost so much, but what held him together during that time was the love he knew his family carried for him. No, he can never regain that time, and he probably will never forget the traumatic ordeal. But what Shawn gained was strength and faith that his family would never give up and he would eventually return home, which he did. Now through their loss, others are gaining. Shawn and his family have started the Shawn Hornbeck Foundation in order to help other families cope with similar traumas. visit for the full story.
Look around, at how lucky you are! If you have children hug them, if your parents are not close by, call them, if you think a friend is out of sorts, email them. Your family is safe, your life looks pretty good from this angle! How does it look from your angle? was just a thought