For last year’s words belong to last year’s language And next year’s words await another voice. And to make an end is to make a beginning.
– T.S. Eliot

Happy 2011. Wishing you all a wonderful start to a new year full of possibilities, great food and adventure! I decided in December that I would make a grant attempt not to fall into my regular pattern of thought and action by stating my numerous resolutions to be followed during the new year. Year after year, I get rather excited about the prospects of meeting them.

I always thoroughly enjoy the process of writing them down as I imagine myself actually following them. But, thats then the end of it. After I have written them down and sworn myself to their fulfillment, I forget them as each day progresses. By February at the latest, any talk of any new year resolutions are so history-that is until the following December, when the cycle begins once again.

Not anymore! I have created a wonderful list of “ingredients,” values or, principles if you may- to apply to my life on a daily basis for this year and all those to come. I can always add to the list, but this my foundation.

This list of “ingredients” is my 2011-recipe for well-being and general happiness. I cannot quite call it a recipe for success, however, but Im certain that it can work as a great foundation towards achieving it! Here it is, interspersed with some of my photographic impressions of Madiera, where I rang in the new year!

Recipe for well-being and happiness: A foundation for an Authentic life

In a mixing bowl, combine:

  • Generous sprinkles of -”let go and let be”: Do the best that I can, and let the rest be.
  • A heavy shower of gratitude! Now, as I head for bed each night, I go through a list of things which occurred to me during that day for which I am grateful. I always end up with a smile on my face, a nice warm feeling in my heart and a wonderful foundation for a solid sleep.
  • Keep the mixture nice and moist by living authentically-honestly-naturally. “Be natural” is a phrase that my maternal grandmother often told her piano students. Let yourself flow with whom you really are-do not put on an act for anybody. I think that by living authentically, ones life will flow readily, easily and with less tension.
  • Incorporate a few quiet moments each day to listen to your heart-the inner-voice.
  • Now, add Consistent doses of care-taking–listening to your body. Feeding the soul-in terms of nutrients for the body of food for the soul.
  • Thorough showers of following your passion-I intend to follow that which really makes me flow, that which makes me feel alive, happy and free.
  • A countless number of smiles each day! Always smile-smile and the world will smile right back at you. A smile is for me one of the greatest gifts that one can offer-a stranger or a loved one can warm a heart in more ways than words can begin to tell. I read recently that waking up with a smile on our face somehow tricks the mind into making it believe that one is happy. As silly as I thought this was, I put this to test and now try to practice waking up with a smile. I really notice that it creates a much better start to the day. Even when I have to practically push and pull myself to physically create a smile on my face-even if “fake”, the very act of doing it puts myself at ease somehow. Give it a try!
  • A large dose of laughter. Similar to that of a smile, laughing is seriously wonderful food for the soul.
  • A few dashes here and there of silliness. Dont ever take yourself too seriously. It creates nothing other than stress.
  • A calm mind mixed with 3 deep breaths each time you find yourself rushing around, getting stressed out, anxious or nervous.
  • An extensive dose of living in the moment. I am really trying to let the past go, learning to embrace all that I am and have in the moment and discovering how to honour the future, while at the same time not letting it dictate my every move. Not an easy one for me!
  • Creativity. Creativity. Creativity!!!


  • Mix all of the above well, knead and let it rise overnight. When you awake in the morning, stir and integrate the mixture into your life on a daily basis!!

Enjoy and happy 2011!