My annual survey to myself....

Happy 2015!

Many of you know, I started this survey, way back when Carl and I had younger kids.   I made everybody write down an answer to each question. 

Now…it’s just me because Carl has passed on (2002), the kids are adults, and now, like then, they think The Survey is…well… stupid.  Maybe I can put something in the survey that may be news to you about them.  

I think I write this so I am forced to think about what went wrong, what went right, and what I might do to make life better for myself, and maybe all of us.

And the survey says,

What’s the most fun you’ve had this year?  Driving down Highway 1 from San Francisco to Newport Beach….me, and my bike hanging off the back of my car.  I was thinking about distances (not too bad), but not the time it would take to travel the distance (a long time).  My two night stop in Cambria by the Sea was lovely. 

What’s the weirdest place you’ve been this year?  I was in Maui and I met Sara at the Lahaina Yacht Club for dinner.  The next day I got a call from a man and his wife (former clients of mine) from Northern CA with whom I have not stayed in touch for years.  He asked me how was dinner the night before?  Rich had looked on the LYC register to see if they knew anybody who had visited recently.  That evening we met at the LYC  and brought each other current with our activities.  All fabulous people. I am so blessed!

What’s the biggest personal accomplishment you’ve had this year?  Thinking I must do everything just right.  I have started to learn to lean on and leave it to God.  S(He) can let me know what I need to do, when I need to do it, and I can be completely satisfied, or, if not, do it again, without the dribble in my head.

What’s the coolest thing you’ve seen this year?  The whales spouting along the coast just south of Big Sur. The lady at the local coastal shop said there was abundant food for them and they just stayed, ate, and played.  And she said she could hear them talk at night.

Where was your quietest moment this year?  Just south of the Hearst Castle, having a luscious lunch outdoors, right next to the ocean, by myself with the current issue of Sunset Magazine, as company.

Who has been the most inspirational to you this year?   My kids.  Sutter and Sean in New Zealand.  They have moved into their house that they’ve built, up on a hill overlooking the ocean, bay, and estuary.  Evan and Erin in San Diego had their first baby, a boy, in July, and now I’m a Nana (in honor of my mom).  Everybody is figuring it all out, all around the world.  Very inspired by them.

What has been the biggest challenge to you this year?   Getting through emergencies, real or imagined. Be calm.  An answer is already there.  Open my thought to options far beyond the norm.

What’s the best book you’ve read this year?  I realized I could read while I was in Maui.  Books. Not trade rags.  I went to Barnes and Noble twice and walked away w/ 6 books.  The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh is amazing and made me cry. 

What’s the best movie you’ve seen this year?  I can’t think of one.

What’s the biggest disappointment you’ve had this year?  This sounds dumb. I fell out of love with my 2003 Audi A4. I bought it new. It was now costing too much to repair, and even though the love affair lasted 12 years…I was over it.  I bought a 2015 Toyota Corolla Sport version w/ all the bells and whistles.  What cost me 40K then was 62K now, and this cost me under 25K. I did it less than 1 week ago. I’ve made $$ on it already…for the first time in 12 years I put regular gas in the tank, rather than mid-grade.  Plus it is kind of sporty (if you see one with the CADEAU license plate…check out the tire rims).

What’s the biggest change you’ve made this year?  Being aware of listening more, talking less.  Getting things done, without the glory.

What’s your prediction for the new year?   As part of the human race, we need to stop killing each other.  Lofty, I know. But it starts now.

If you find yourself with nothing to do…send me your own answers!  

live richly, marilyn


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