Monday, 31 December 2012

HAVE YOU EVER - What I Have Learned this Year!


Accompanied by the "New Year Song 2013: HA HA HA HA HAPPY NEW YEAR!"

Hellooooo Everyone!

I can't believe it is already the end of 2012! I remember writing the first blog of 2012 like it was yesterday! It is crazy how fast so many months have passed!

Looking back on this year and the intentions I had set at the beginning of the year, I can definitely say I fulfilled some of my desired goals. My main goal was to be able to challenge my fears and become more vulnerable in my life, and boy did I do that! I jumped into that intention feet first and did not look back. As I wrote in a few of my previous blogs, I started singing this year and although it has been a terrifying experience it has also been very fulfilling! Singing really relates to being comfortable expressing who you are. You are baring your soul on stage and learning to become comfortable in your skin while doing it. Singing relates to being confident in having a voice at all (expressing opinions, thoughts, worries, fears - expressing it all!!) My singing experience has been similar to writing this blog, however I am now expressing myself in public, where people can potentially criticize and judge me to my face! GAH! It is definitely still a challenge for me to this day to go up and perform some nights but I fight through the anxiety and do it anyways! I am a people pleaser and care far too much about what people think of me, so the fear of failing in front of people has been present many times over! However with that said, it has been an incredible experience performing my brother's songs with him and being able to share his talents with others together. I am very proud of him and honestly am impressed each night by his quick wit and his writing abilities! You go brother!!!  Can't wait to see where 2013 takes us!


1) I have learned that it is OK to be where I am in my life. I had a moment this summer that had me finally feeling that much desired contentment with life. The only one who is judging my life is me! The pressure I was putting on myself to be someone and something in this lifetime disappeared and I felt FREEEEE as a bird! A weight was lifted off my shoulders and I had a spring in my step that week. The unknown is a scary thing but life is far too precious to waste worrying about things that you can't force to happen. Life really is a journey that has to be appreciated and cherished along the way and looking into the future so much has taken my focus off of that appreciation. I have said it many times before - being present in the moment is where it's at!!! It is one of my goals for 2013 and onward! I need to take my own advice.

2) I have learned that my self-worth needs to be worked on. I settle for crumbs and give less deserving people the benefit of the doubt for far too long. I need to become an advocate for myself more often and not settle for shit or accept minimum effort.

3) I have learned that I really want to travel!!! For the love of God!

4) I have learned I need to have more patience (still)! I have been reminded many times this year that the baby steps are necessary in life to build a solid foundation. I tend to see the end first and get discouraged and move onto something new if it does not happen the way I want right away. Anything in life worth pursuing needs effort, nurturing and patience put forth in order to have it grow into something spectacular in the end!!

5) I have learned I'm still a commitment phobe *sigh* BUT 2013 will be different gosh darnit.

6) I am still learning the art of sitting down for five minutes. Perhaps super glue will help with that. 

7) I have learned that I have amazing friends and family. They have helped me through some dark times during my lifetime and I cannot thank them enough :) It is funny how people come out of the woodwork to give you information you really need to hear when needed. I need to feel more gratitude when times of loneliness hits. I'm not alone.

8) I have learned that I have 10,000 KMS left on my car to last me until December 2013. Ummmmmm....anyone want to come to my house...every weekend? Anyone?

9) I have learned that comparing myself to others gets me nowhere. Their journey is their own. Mine is mine. It is has been a hard train of thought to get out of my head. I need to drill this into my thoughts every day.

10) I have found that doing laundry is very relaxing. Dusting and vacuuming not so much.
11) I have learned that there really IS a use for Twitter - when you figure out what that use is.
12) I have learned that I've become a raging bitch lately. I need to control my emotions and temper!
13) I have learned that the F word is being overused in my everyday vocabulary. However... it is a great word.

14) I have learned that I'm afraid of childbirth. It's going to hurt. Really bad. I'll be the crazy aunt for a bit longer.

15) I need snow tires before I die.
16) I have learned that I do have the capacity to connect with someone or something - in any sort of way - romantic or otherwise.

17) I have an anxiety problem! Something I'm going to work on this year :)

All in all it was a year of changes and struggles with some fun along the way :) I moved into a new apartment, went on a bike excursion to Toronto from Oakville, went on a wonderful trip to Calgary this year for my friends wedding, was treated like a queen at The Moonshine Cafe for my birthday, enrolled myself into a singing course with the infamous Elaine Overholt (and took a few lessons with the very talented Brooke Harris), played many amazing shows with Whiskey Epiphany, had an incredible long weekend with my great friend Lianne in Muskoka, went to some sweet concerts, started taking Ukulele lessons, went to court for the first time (unpleasant experience), and experienced great times with awesome friends and family. I also witnessed a million and one of my friends getting engaged. It gives me hope that love is real!

This year I want to focus on becoming more disciplined and focused in my life and to really take into action all the tools I've learned throughout the years to be able to do that! I am constantly on the run and need to spend more time relaxing. I'd like to contain my emotions better and open my heart up wider. I need to take better care of my health and be less impulsive!!! I also need to just be me and give myself a break when I do stupid shit in life :)

I hope everyone has an amazing New Year's Eve and that all of your dreams come true in the upcoming year! I look forward to seeing what enfolds!!

Much love to everyone,
Lovely Lianne XOXO

Saturday, 29 September 2012

Have You Ever Had A Yo-Yo? Or Boomerang? Read on...

Accompanied by "You Keep Me Hanging On" by Kim Wilde (cover) and Maroon 5's "One More Night" - thought this song was kind of perfect when I actually listened to the lyrics!

YOOOO-YO (hardy harr).

How is everyone doin'?? Two blogs in a week! How exciting!!!

So kids...I've decided to chat to you about yo-yo's (and/or boomerangs) today. Now...these yo-yos are not the old school wooden kind, or the plastic ones that sparkle and shine with colourful blinking lights when you set them free. Those are the fun kind of yo-yos; the innocent kinds of yo-yos that bring you back to when you were a carefree child. No folks...I am not talking about those. What I'm talking about are human yo-yos or boomerangs. The type of human being that you set free for good but end up coming back into your life over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over again. The ones that create constant heartache, and stress, and uncertainty in your life. Or more specifically, the ones that you ALLOW to create those types of feelings and scenarios in your life, because really it's our own responsibility to not let these people return into our lives to create the chaos in the first place. When these yo-yo’s enter your life they bring you on the roller coaster ride of your lifetime...kind of like the Mind Buster at Canada's Wonderland...where your head and body bounce around giving you the biggest headache at the end of it all. I'm sure some of you reading this can relate and can vouch for how unpleasant these types of relationships can be. I unfortunately have been involved in a few boomerang "relationships/friendships" throughout my short time here on earth. Stupidly, while in the midst of one of these relationships, I held out for the slim chance of something real coming out of it because gosh darn it they threw a crumb of attention my way (enough to keep me connected). However, with that said, I generally tried to fool myself and everyone around me by saying that I wasn't holding out for anything with these guys, that I'm just having fun, while simultaneously sabotaging potential chances with the people who actually gave a shit. It's not that I do not want a real companion either. I truly do want one, however the challenge, excitement and drama related to the situation have been subconsciously more attractive then actually attaining the prize at the end. That small amount of attention you suddenly get feels like a victory and is a natural high. They have chosen you, or there is a potential to be chosen. Thennnnnn they disappear and the victory is lost *tear*.

"'re not really into wanting to date me right now? Ok. Well let me try and change your mind.'s all my time. My money. My car. My year. Take it."

I decided to write this blog because throughout this past year especially, I have met so many other women and men going through similar situations and started to wonder - WHY ARE WE DOING THIS TO OURSELVES??! We are all strong, smart, capable, independent girls/guys with a lot to offer someone. Why are we falling privy to these people who have nothing to give back to us? Who only think of themselves? Having an emotionally unavailable/yo-yo companion is hard because you end up blaming yourself in the end when things go awry. You ask yourself questions like, what am I doing wrong? What is wrong with me that they can't commit to me and or cannot stick around? What is so great about the 500 other girls he has on the side most likely? You stew and wonder and analyze and then let go of the situation only to get caught up in it 2, 5, 6, 9 months later when they make contact with you again. Once again you feel they finally realize the person you are and you try your best not to be available to this person's needs or requests because as soon as you do the game is over. How ridiculous, RIGHT?!??! If you show any sort of emotion, they think they've won and the attention is lost. It's a vicious, VICIOUS cycle; a cycle that has you looking deep into yourself to see why you accept this in your life. Is it a lack of self-worth? Is it that you're emotionally unavailable yourself? Commitment phobic? What is stopping us from wanting something stable? Something secure? Something more "normal" that won't leave our hearts aching? I have concluded that we are gluttons for punishment and it is a journey and pattern that I know needs to stop for myself.  It's not that I am searching for these kinds of people or relationships. I just attract someone and or are attracted to guys who mirror the energy I'm putting out there at the moment. SO the hard part now is breaking the cycle; breaking from the addiction to the stimulation, the temptation, the challenge, and pain that comes along with the constant yo-yoing. Shifting our own thoughts and energy will help attract what we’ve always hoped for. It really does start with us. Perhaps I've never been clear in what I want as that would actually bring about what I want and I haven't been ready for it. I am ready now - well getting there :) I am ready to receive love and I am also ready to give it back wholeheartedly to people who appreciate it. 

I hope everyone has a fabulous weekend! A beautiful day it is :)

Lovely Lianne XO

Tuesday, 25 September 2012

Have You Ever Observed Humanity?

Accompanied by "Look Out Any Window" by Bruce Hornsby. 

"I think my job is to observe people and the world, and not to judge them. I always hope to position myself away from so-called conclusions. I would like to leave everything wide open to all the possibilities in the world." ~ Haruki Murakami


Yep...I know...I know. Brutal. It's been almost two months!!!! AH!

So...have you ever observed people and thought about what their lives are like? Is that a creepy thought?? Maybe it's stalkerish and I shouldn't be admitting I do this...but I do do this!! So there!!! I was on a bike ride the other day downtown Oakville and as I was peddling along I was watching people as I was passing them. I saw a man in his car looking like he was upset (or perhaps constipated...which is pretty upsetting I suppose) and suddenly thought "he has a life of his own that he is dealing with just as I am." Who would have thought?! When I'm out and about I generally observe people - couples holding hands down the street, janitors cleaning the toilets, business men in their suits (OK that's mainly for my own personal enjoyment) and wonder how they got to where they are in life, and why, and what kind of people are in their own lives. I know it goes without saying, but all these people have relationships, friends, jobs, and journey's of their own. They are trying to make a life for themselves, and live life period. Observing this makes me realize how many people there are in this world doing their own thing, trying to figure it all out (or maybe they are not). They have sad days, happy days, deaths, births, and lost loves in their lives and have important people that get them through a hard day. They have people that look up to them or they have people that they themselves admire...that makes a difference in their life. I think of how lucky I am for the people in my own life and how crazy it is that these people I observe don't know the wonderful people in my life that have changed me and helped me grow. They have their own people to help them through their life!! I start to wonder why I have the specific people in my life and look at all the lessons those people have taught me. It is a strange train of thought but I suppose I'm really stepping out of my own existence to see that there is in fact others around me - that we are all interconnected.

Observing people helps ground me and helps give myself a reality check. Everyone is important and is serving a purpose in this world. There is no one person that is more important than the other. Whether you are celebrity or not, whether you are homeless, whether you are a CEO of a huge company, whether you are shoveling shit off the sidewalk, or whether you are living in suburbia with two cats and a dog and 500 kids, we are all here to contribute to this world and have our own journey's to experience and lessons to learn and things to do. We all contribute to the state of this world whether good or bad. It's just crazy to know that there are billions of people out there living and growing and learning. There are everyday heros that aren't being recognized but have changed someones life forever. There are people out there falling in love with the man or woman of their dreams, making a family, and contributing to society in so many beautiful ways. There are people bustling about late for work with coffee in hand and their head racing with thoughts you don't know about. Some are connected to the world and some are on an island to themselves thinking that they are in control of it all. Each person is here for a reason just as I am...just as we all are. Realizing this puts things in perspective for me when I come across a negative situation or when I myself create a negative situation due to my own perceptions. Knowing that we all are here going through whatever we are going through for a reason helps detach myself from the situation and display more compassion than anything. It helps me not take things so personally (something I'm working on and have certainly not mastered yet). Some of us may never learn our lessons in this lifetime but it's not up to me to judge that person. We ourselves would not want to be judged when we are going through similar situations or our own trials and tribulations.

Anywho...perhaps I'm just a weirdo thinking about all this but it's something that comes about often in my many thoughts throughout the day!

Hope everyone is doing well!!!!!

Lovely Lianne XO

Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Have You Ever Been Speed Dating Before?

A clip from House when they went speed dating.

Hey Y'alllllll....

Once again...I haven't written in what feels like FOREVER!! It's been a busy month and I cannot believe it's almost the end of freakin July??! What zeeee helllll?!

SO...why we are all here. Speed dating!!!!!! What an interesting experience it was! I have never been before but have always been curious, so when my friend presented the idea to me in FEBRUARY (yah...we took a while to actually do it) we signed up for some Group On deal and off to the races we went (five...months...later). I didn't know what to expect and was kind of nervous about the idea of having to figure out what to talk about with 10 to 15 different guys in a span of 2 hours. The situation in general felt like a pressure situation. I'm not good with pressure. At all. Especially when it has to do with conversations with boys that I could potentially go on a date with. HOWEVER, with that said, rule number 5 of FastLife speed dating states that you need to just go with the freaking flow and do not plan on what you are going to talk about (or something like that). I am not a particularly good planner to begin with so that wasn't hard to achieve. Nevertheless, I was happy that I was going with someone I knew, who funnily enough was also named Lianne, so double the fun! Yeehaw!

We arrived downtown Toronto at 7:30 p.m. on a fine Saturday night as people were starting to trickle into the venue. I tried not to talk to any guy beforehand at the bar OR look them in the eye OR look inviting in any way shape or form just in case we exhausted all we could talk about before the event even started. Staying incognito was my goal, which promptly ended when my drink straw flung out and hit me. *Sigh* You can't bring me anywhere. Lianne and I chatted with each other for a bit, admired the hot bartender and went into the main room with our drinks. The main room had numbered tables where the ladies had to sit, while the guys had to walk around to each of those tables in order. Suckas!! Lianne sat behind me which became the best ice breaker in history for the guys. You are welcome speed dating men! We seriously made it so easy for them!!! Literally every single guy started off their conversation by mentioning that "OH! Her name was Lianne too" and asked if I knew her. I should have told them "Yes. We know each other VERY well...if you know what I mean. Rarr." I sat at my table number 16 and took a glance at the match card on the table. The match card had blank spaces for every guys name with a YES or NO check box beside their name. Pretty easy to understand. Just make sure you check them off as you go in case you do not remember their names by the end of the night and end up checking off someone you didn't really like.
    At around 8 p.m. the host banged his gong and our first conversations started. Guy number one for me was named David W. and he did something in some sort of field. He had gone speed dating before and wasn't entirely successful but had fun. He also liked to look past me at other people when he was talking about himself so a big NO TO YOU mister. NEXT!!!  Beyond the first guy all other conversations went really well and it was surprisingly more fun than I expected.  There were some really nice guys in our group and it was cool to hear each person's story. It felt more natural after a while and there was a good flow of conversation. Obviously there were some people that I didn't click with - bad breath boys, younger than me boys, "people I couldn't understand if I tried" boys - but all in all it was a good group. Towards the end of the night things got tiring as the process is literally a whirlwind of energy and talking (and that's coming from me!!!). When the last guy of the night came around I was excited for it to be done. When he started talking I was even more excited for it to end. What a douchebag he was. His name was also David and he proceeded to tell me during part of our conversation that I needed to lose weight around the top and middle (he said he was a personal trainer) and it was probably related to diet. He also told Lianne this and there is nothing she needs to lose! He brought up his dead girlfriend three times (the fact that she died period) and brought up his depression and that all the other girls he saw that night drained him of his energy. Holy mother of God make it stop. It would not be surprising if he was baffled why he did not get any matches. 

Anywho, that's really all I have to report. The next day I received four out of five of the matches which is kind of fun. I did it mainly for fun but who knows...maybe something will come out of it :)

Hopefully everyone is enjoying their summer!!!! I'm off to Alberta soon for a wedding which will be a nice break!

Love ya's!
Lovely Lianne :)

Wednesday, 6 June 2012

Have You Ever Been Super Vulnerable Before?

Accompanied by "I Can't Make You Love Me" by Bonnie Raitt. 

"What makes you vulnerable makes your beautiful." Brene Brown

Hey Y'alllll!

SO...once again...I apologize for my lack of blogging. I have three half written blogs if it makes anyone feel better?! Lots of transition happening so I've been a bit distracted and less than inspired to write about anything!!! I'm actually trying to re-vamp this blog so if you have any ideas, THROW THEM AT MY FACE!!! I'd love to hear them!

NOW...why we are here in the first place...ahhhheeeem:

For the last six weeks I have been involved in a singing course called The Discovery Class with the infamous Elaine Overholt - AND DISCOVER I DID! Of course there were many familiar patterns popping up...but this time they were being called out and exposed for aaaallll to see. Thank you Elaine. I joined the course to first improve my vocal skills, but more importantly to start feeling more comfortable being vulnerable in front of people. My natural reaction when I'm stuck in an uncomfortable situation is to infuse humour and to self-deprecate a.k.a DEFLECTION! If I make fun of myself first then people will know I'm aware that I just sucked and therefore will shoot down any chance of them perhaps making fun of me first! HA people! I'm unsure as to why I created this defense mechanism over the years, but it's there and this year I want to kick it out of my life. What a freakin challenge that is! Who wants to be naked in front of people you don't know or in front of people you DO know?! Well...I suppose there are many people that don't mind that and make pretty good money doing it I'm sure...BUT I am not one of them. Porn is great and all but...I mean...I thought of being an escort once but...I mean...*awkward*.

There were six people in my class (as well as Elaine), and I was super nervous the first day (and pretty much every class after that actually). Every class included these vocal warm ups which you did as a group and by yourself. That in itself was a little nerve wrecking as I felt my skills weren't up to par with others in my class to begin with, so to do a warm-up one by one was embarrassing! My upper register is less than stellar due to all the fun I had in university and perhaps my everyday loud talking in general. This was a good lesson in halting any comparison to other people and just accept where I was at and what I can ACTUALLY offer. To my surprise there IS something I can offer.  Accepting your limitations at that moment is certainly hard to do when you want to so badly excel at something. However with that said, the lesson I wanted to learn was be comfortable with who I am now and accept all parts of me, which includes my limited upper register. Loving and accepting all parts of you makes you become less afraid of showing those parts of you that perhaps will be misunderstood or judged

Throughout the six weeks I was challenged for sure but learned a lot. Each week we were pushed to improve our skills and really dig deep and draw from experience to help us connect to our songs. My song was "I Can't Make You Love Me" by Bonnie Raitt, and how appropriate that song was for what I wanted to accomplish and for what I was experiencing and have experienced numerous times in my life. I have definitely had my fair share of heartache and disappointments in the past (as many of us have) and many years of feeling unworthy, and to have to share that with others alone on the stage, with everyone staring at me, was absolutely terrifying. However, that is why I was in the class in the first place. I wanted to be able to be comfortable letting myself go and get lost in a song that left me vulnerable. I've been moved to tears experiencing other artists conquer this feat and wanted to get to that place myself. I wanted to be able to connect with people in the same way and have them go on a journey with me. I wanted to be honest with myself and connect and feel the pain I had buried throughout the years and not be scared of what people thought of me while exposing my emotional side. Some classes were certainly better than others, but one class in particular stuck out for me that changed so much for me. I got up on stage, and was rather nervous. I wasn't feeling particularly confident that day and was making it known by my body language and nervous habits. I started singing my song and started off well but throughout the song I could hear little mistakes I was making and started to cut myself up as I was singing. I felt defeated by the end of it and wanted to run away. I was told to sit down in front of the class, and I just started to cry at that point (which was rather embarrassing in itself). I had disappointed myself and disappointed the class by my lack of confidence. Elaine and other classmates said they would never have even noticed the mistakes if I hadn't picked them out. They were enjoying the song and I pretty much destroyed it by being so ridiculous. In Lianne fashion I was trying to lower any expectations of what people were about to encounter, before anyone else could comment. I had wasted a lesson and on the car ride home I began to see the blessing in that class. There were a couple of other students who were called out on their shit and as I was driving I started to really feel gratitude. I learned that I needed to stop taking things for granted and really cherish and be present in the moment I'm in. I needed to take advantage of what I've been given and what I have committed to do. I spent good money to join this experience and to waste it away and not really put my 100% effort into what I was doing because of fear or my insecurities was ridiculous. After that class I went into every other class with more gratitude and tried my best to get past any fear I was feeling. On the last class we performed in front of family and friends (around 33 people) and although my voice was completely shoooottttt I was able to emote and make people cry in the process. SCORE!

I learned its best to take risks and fight through the fear and uncomfortable feelings than to not try at all and regret what could have been. I don't want to have any more lost opportunities because I was too scared to do what I wanted to do. I learned it is OK to stand naked in front of a crowd (figuratively) and let the crowd see your soul. Although there is a risk of being criticized or judged or a risk of getting your heart broken if you are sharing your feelings with someone, it's also the only way to really truly connect with the world. I've spent many years hiding certain feelings or not being honest with myself to avoid being vulnerable or rocking the boat or risk being embarrassed or rejected. It's so freeing to know that you have challenged yourself and allowed yourself to connect to someone or a group of people, perhaps inspiring change in them as well!! I got in the way of myself and as much as I still struggle with nerves and insecurities, I still fight through them and go out there anyway. Through time I know things will get easier, it's a matter of having compassion and love for myself and a lot of patience!!! Rome wasn't built overnight damnit!!

Til next time people! Have a great weekend :)

Lovely Lianne

Friday, 27 April 2012

Have You Ever Been of Service?

Accompanied by "Lean on Me" by Bill Withers. 

"Everybody can be great...because anybody can serve. You don't have to have a college degree to serve. You don't have to make your subject and verb agree to serve. You only need a heart full of grace. A soul generated by love."

~ Martin Luther King Jr.

Hi Everyone!!!

Hope you all are doing fabulous!!!!!! 2012 has certainly brought about some grand experiences as of late and I'm super excited to see what each day has to offer. I feel like there is so much promise, positive change and awareness occurring in people I've come into contact with which is pretty exciting. As life has continued on for me, I've started to realize more and more that what is missing in my life is the act of service. This is not to say I haven't helped people along my journey or have not been of service at all, I just feel I haven't done enough!! These past years I've been so concerned with improving my own well-being (which is of course important as well) that I have left limited time to extend a hand to others in need. I've truly become sick of myself! It's a win-win situation when you serve others. You are creating joy in the lives of other people while in turn also creating joy for yourself because you are helping others. Service enables you to experience connection with people on an individual or group basis, and has you step outside of yourself for once to think of someone else's well-being. As much as we think we are not affected by others, we are. It's a world of interconnection which is why it's important to live with joy, compassion and love in your heart so that that energy can spread from one person to the next. Service really is the key to happiness in my opinion. Happiness can be that simple people! Who knew?! Do you remember the feelings you got when you did something nice for someone "just because", with no expectations of anything in return? It's a great feeling right?? YES IT IS!!! I know I walk a little higher and with a spring in my step. These days we fill our lives up with material things, trips, alcohol, drugs, and sex to create the feelings of elation and joy that are naturally brought on by being of service. Volunteering, or random acts of kindness is a MUCH better feeling then buying that TV or the hangover you experience the day after a "great" night. It's also a lot better for your body and your bank account!! Service can be as simple as helping someone across the street or carrying their groceries into their car. It is also a commitment to someone else or an organization - making them a priority in your life. This is the part I need to work on. My life is all over the place so I have trouble committing to one thing for a long period of time. However that needs to change and will change gosh darnit!  I always enjoy seeing the smile on someone's face when you help them unexpectedly, or surprise them with a small gift. There are times though that you won't get any reaction at all and that is OK. The key to giving and service is to expect nothing in return. Many of us do things with good intentions in mind (myself included), but feel disappointed when recognition is not given or if that person doesn't return the favour down the road. Expectations of giving back is conditional giving which isn't truly giving of yourself. It's like love. Unconditional love is loving someone regardless of their flaws, with no expectations. If you are giving to get something in return (recognition from the public, praise, approval from someone), your heart will not be filled quite the same way. That giving is coming from a place of ego and is not centered in your heart. Just giving for the sake of giving is enough. Knowing you are making a difference in someone's life or the world by spreading love and kindness is enough. With this said, giving repeatedly to people that just take and take from you or drain your energy is not advised. There is a level of discernment and healthy boundaries that need to be put in place so that you aren't being taken advantage of constantly. This is something I need to learn!

There are many volunteer opportunities out there that allow for a more consistent involvement in one's own community or globally. I've volunteered in spurts with Easter Seal's, and Salvation Army, and spent a year volunteering as a coach for the Special Olympics at one of the community centre's in Toronto. Each volunteer opportunity was a blast. I love connecting with others and I feel like I'm living some sort of purpose knowing that I'm helping make a difference in someone's life. How does the world turn if we are only looking out for ourselves? It gets to be a pretty lonely, unfulfilling existence.

I'm going to end this blog with a few inspirational quotes. I love these :) Makes me remember why I'm in this world. I've been so focused on being somewhere else that I've lost sight of what truly makes me happy and that truly is the act of helping people.

Have a great weekend!!

Lovely Lianne xo

"We work on ourselves in order to help others but also we help others in order to work on ourselves."
~ Pema Chodron (reading one of her books right now - "The Places That Scare You"!)

"Service is the rent we pay for being. It is the very purpose of life, and not something you do in your spare time."
Marion Wright Edelman

"Only a life lived for others is a life worthwhile."
~ Albert Einstein

"Do what you can, with what you have, where you are."
~ Theodore Roosevelt

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Have You Ever Thought About Rules?

Accompanied by "Wake Up" by John Legend & The Roots (remake) and "Everyday People" by Sly & The Family Stone.

**Written a week ago...procrastination at its best**


So this morning I was chatting about the disqualification of the transgendered Miss Universe Canada pageant contestant with my mum. This contestant (Jenna Talackova) was disqualified for not being a "natural" born female which to me is ludicrous as she identifies her own self as being a woman and went through (at an early age I might add) the entire procedure to transform into the woman she has always identified being. She is also "legally" a female, with all personal documentation supporting that she is a female. It's discrimination at its best! When I asked my mum what she thought about the situation, she said "well there are rules." Ack!!! That word "rules". It makes me cringe and that statement made me rather angry. I instantly thought "rules can be changed!!! Especially ones that don't make sense!"  I read an article about this incident and it was mentioning the fact that "natural born females" in these pageants perform many other kinds of surgeries and procedures to alter their appearances - boob jobs, nose jobs, dying of hair.  Yes it's not changing an entire gender, but how is going under the knife to alter ones "natural" appearance, making that person any more of a natural born female than a transgendered person? Why is the rule so specific to "natural born females"? Why do transgendered pageants have to exist? Why can't there be one pageant and more acceptance? Clearly organizers thought she was female enough to have her go that far into the competition.

This whole situation got me thinking about the concept of rules. I understand there needs to be some boundaries and rules in our lives and in this world - rules to ensure there is safety, order, respect, and fairness. However, rules become outdated and some rules have been created based out of narrow-minded viewpoints of life or biased opinions and one's own value system! Society and the world is constantly evolving and is evolving even quicker it feels as of late. With this evolution and increased awareness within society, there are constant changes in viewpoints, ways of living, technology, consciousness, awareness, and acceptance. It would only be natural that with these changes rules also change - either dropped completely or revised to suit the times. If people don't challenge the existing rules that make NO sense any longer, change and evolution become stagnant until there is a revolt.  If rules weren't challenged, black people would still be sitting at the back of the bus or using "coloured" washrooms (although racism still does exist in many places). There would still be slaves. Smoking would still be in restaurants and bars and slowly killing children in cars!! Gay marriages would never have been legalized (a work in progress for sure, however some progress is better than no progress). I'm definitely not saying the examples above don't still happen in places around this world, however there have been major improvements in all these areas due to the challenge of rules and increased awareness of social injustice and inequality. This pageant situation was an opportunity to progress as an organization and become an example of acceptance (and make themselves look a little less superficial!). I suppose the organizers aren't quite ready for change and are more concerned about keeping up with their image and keeping the peace between other contestants that perhaps feel threatened by the transgendered contestant. Perhaps the contestant could have been upfront about their gender change, however if she is a legal female in all regards and has felt she was a female all her life, why does she have to justify her identity to anyone?

Anyways...this is only my own opinion and an oversimplified one at that. At least if anything, this pageant controversy has gotten people thinking, so that in itself is progression. Hopefully when things die down it is not forgotten.

UPDATE: Jenna is now allowed back in the competition, however she needs to meet the "gender recognition requirements of Canada, and the standards established by other international competitions." Ok. Clearly she did or, again, how did she get put through in the first place!!!!?! Ugh.

Lovely Lianne XOX

Wednesday, 7 March 2012

Have You Ever Been a Late Bloomer?

Accompanied by "Late Bloomer" by Ron Sexsmith.
Hello All,

I was thinking a lot about the evolution of my life as of late and I have to say it has been a pretty slow evolution gosh darnit!! Has anyone ever felt like they've been steps behind everyone during their life? A "late bloomer" as they say? When looking at all the milestones one experiences in their lifetime, all mine seemed to have lagged behind everyone else's. As I've mentioned before there are so many people who have it all figured out and at an early age. They have developed their talents, successes, and overall life plan in a short period of time and it's mind boggling! It baffles me that some people can develop so quickly while others take years to develop and mold their lives into the lives they've dreamed of.  Let's look at the Wikipedia definition of a late bloomer:

A late bloomer is a person whose talents and capabilities are not visible to others until later than usual. The term is used metaphorically to describe a child or adolescent who develops more slowly than others in their age group, but eventually catches up and in some cases overtakes their peers. Or an adults whose talent or genius in a particular field only appears later in life than is normal - in some cases only in old age.
YEP!!! I feel this is definitely something I'm experiencing and not just regarding the finding my talents and being a genius part ;). I've been a late bloomer in most areas of my life. I will paint you a picture of what my life thus far has been like:

During my younger years I was always the awkward girl (and kind of still am). I was taller than all the boys, had big feet compared to all the other girls in my class, had two different sized front teeth, and didn't seem to attract the attention of the boys I liked (I mean who can blame them with that description!). Everyone was getting grade school boyfriends, going to cool parties, and being overall cooler than me. The one cool party I was invited to I ended up going upstairs to hang out with the girls mom and younger sister because I didn't feel comfortable with the people at the party. I felt I was always on the outside trying to fit in and that God hated me when he gave me boobs before everyone else. I tried to cover up my little anthills with baggy shirts from Northern Reflections (a peach one with light blue writing to be more specific). Of course it was cool back then to wear those t-shirts. Maybe. Probably not. My boobs and my lovely womanly "present" were the only things I seemed to get BEFORE anyone else.  Seriously God? Why?? Although I have to say...some girls were kind of jealous that I was getting my "present" before them for some unknown reason. Why would anyone be jealous of bleeding?? I didn't get it!  I cried when mine came because I was 11 and I didn't want to deal with it. I laid on the couch feeling sorry for myself and cried uncontrollably in my mothers arms.Yep. Cool.
   Anywho...I started going to public school in Grade 7 which was new for my sister and I as we went to a Catholic school before that.  We were new to the neighbourhood, city, and the school and I only knew two people on the first day - my neighbour AND new friend Lucinda, and my twin sister. We moved around a lot so the first day of school was never a comfortable transition for me. The morning of this particular first day of school, my mother told us to look out for needles full of drugs. No joke. WTF Mom. I honestly thought I'd show up at school and would have to look out for people with needles getting ready to jab me.  Looking back at that story, and hearing other people's life stories about growing up, my life seemed a tad bit sheltered and rather behind.

I never drank in grade school or smoked pot or did drugs - which apparently was the thing to do then. Who knew. I wouldn't have even known where to get any of that shit. All that time I was happily playing badminton outside while people were doing that stuff. Late bloomer.

I was asked out once in Grade Seven and never had a boyfriend throughout highschool, unless you count the boy next door, but we were never "official". Late bloomer. 

My sense of style was horrendous (cartoon animal printed sweatshirts - enough said). People were developing styles and following trends...I honestly can't tell you what I was following. Probably what my Mom told me looked good. Late bloomer. 

I did not have my first real make out session until I was 16 (which was at a party with some guy I met that night). Late bloomer.

My first alcohol experience was when I was 17 and that just didn't go well. At all. I was more into sports and liking boys than drinking. Late bloomer.

My first kind of "date" was for my highschool senior prom. Sad. Late bloomer.

I smoked pot for the first time when I was 20 years old at university. Very late bloomer *sigh*.

Sex...well that was also late - but that was a personal choice as I wanted to be in a serious relationship - and the age I will not disclose but it was later than most (if not all) of my friends. Super late bloomer.

I suppose not doing drugs and drinking when I was 13 isn't the worst thing that could have happened to me,  but for years I felt like it was a picture of a total loser. When I was being diagnosed with ADHD at 18 I talked to my psychologist about my concerns regarding how my life was evolving at that point. She started talking about her oldest son and his own experiences and told me how things started later in life for him. She said "Lianne you are just a late bloomer." I looked at her and thought about this term and instantly felt better. It gave me hope that something will happen with my life damnit - whenever that was. Throughout university I often wondered when things would start happening for me in terms of love, career, marriage, kids, and in terms of being more cool in general.  I mean I was sort of cooler in university but still felt like that awkward kid at the cool party. Some people's lives just develop a little slower and they need more time to grow into themselves energetically, spiritually, emotionally, and mentally. Their lives start to "come together" and unfold later in life which is what I am experiencing. This year I turn 34 and things are beginning to unfold and it is very exciting. Although I'm still not fully settled in my career path, nor am I anywhere close to being married or having kids, I feel like I'm coming into my own finally. I'm starting to develop and utilize the talents I pushed aside for years and am starting to appreciate my body and spirit. The trials and tribulations and teen angst has helped me become a more humble and modest person and way less judgmental. By being a late bloomer I've been able to observe others more closely to see what I do and don't want in my life. It has also made me realize that patience is something I need to develop more of. I really don't want to be locked in a set plan right now. Obviously if a more permanent plan presents itself to me and it's a great opportunity I will consider it then, but I'd rather embrace life's surprises in the meantime and continue seeing where life takes me. I have to accept that I'm a turtle - slow and steady can still experience triumph and success all while going at their own pace. My challenge at this point (being a restless spirit) is controlling the "hare" in me a bit better ;)

SO HERE'S TO ALL THE LATE BLOOMERS!!!! And congrats to all the other people who have found happiness in life :)

Lovely Lianne :) XO

Another reference as well to check out:

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Have You Ever Felt Like You Were Wasting Your Precious Time?

Accompanied by "Watchin' The Wheels" by John Lennon.


Thought I'd write a quick note as I'm feeling ever so motivated to do stuff today. This could in fact become a novel as per usual but I'll try hard to cut it short!!! I started writing this blog when I was on a 7 day juice cleanse (!). Yes juice cleanse. Just juice for seven whole days. And water. And tea. For someone who LOVES to eat I thought this was surely going to be a challenge. However...I survived and four days ago I finished it and am starting to eat some real food (if you consider salads real food). Blah. During these trying seven days, I started to make a few realizations about myself. The whole process made me slow down a bit, and really just be present with my thoughts. I started this blog on Day 3 so let me fill you in on the first two days you know how they were:

DAY 1: Tortured by my brother eating a delicious Harvey's bacon cheeseburger and a poutine in my car. Thank you, but get the eff out of my effing car.

DAY 2: Great. Not hungry. Delicious juices.

NOW...DAY 3:

I'm on day 3 of a "Purify" cleanse and because I'm not stuffing my face every hour I've acquired a lot of time to think and do shit. Today has been a bit hard as I'm really wanting a hamburger!!! Or a pizza... but instead, I'm drinking some delicious green juice....yum. I wanted to give my system a rest from all the crap I've been ingesting since the summer - beer, junk, shit. That's it. I want to get back into eating healthy again and eating the types of foods that I should be eating - no gluten, no dairy, no refined sugar. What a difference it really makes.

During the last three days with all this time on my hands I've thought a lot about my life (well I guess that's not really new eh?). I've realized how much time I've wasted so far on meaningless things. Perhaps it's because I work too many hours and I don't have the energy or motivation to do ANOTHER thing that requires any energy or brain power, but that can be changed. I need to re-prioritize.

Some revelations I've made this past week are:

1) I love food!! I love it!!!!! God help me!!!! I'm torturing myself.
2) I love Harvey's. 
3) I spend more then enough time on the Internet watching and searching stupid shit...

This is a man who shot his daughters laptop on this video cause she posted crap on Facebook about her parents enslaving her by making her do chores. 

when I should really be watching something like this...

"A Meaningful Life" by the Dalai Lama.

4) I don't know alot anything about world issues. That's a big one. I'm so out of the loop because I hate seeing all the negative news that's plastered throughout the news programs and newspapers.

Guy: "Who's the president?"
Me: "Fuck if I know."
Guy: "Who's at war right now?"
Me: "People...with...guns...and tanks..."
Guy: "Who is running in the US elections?"
Me: "A bunch of liars."
Guy: "What is socialism?"
Me: Blank stare. "A movement for people that want to"

This is of course is a bit of an exaggeration but you get my drift. It's quite pathetic really. NOW... how do I get to be so educated I ask myself:

Step One: Start to read books.
Step Two: Try to find Cole's notes on these books. Is Cole's still around? I hope so.
Step Three: Resort to Wikipedia when the books get boring.
Step Four: Skip the comics and read the actual news. 
Step Five: Take over the world with my brilliant positive news company...and watch it so that watching the news can now be less of a horrendous experience.


5) I don't do enough of what I love to do. I work too much and play too little. Which resorts to meeting less boys. Which really sucks. Which has to be stopped. Now.

6) I am really hard on myself and give up too easily - "BE KIND TO YOURSELF!" My new motto.

7) I feel trapped in my own brain sometimes and am riddled with anxiety when it comes to taking risks.

8) I say no more than yes. Although I've been taking risks and challenging myself lately with the singing and my writing, I'd like to explore life more. Expand my horizons. SO say yes more often.

9) Life is really too short. A family emergency a few weeks ago really put into perspective how we really need to cherish each moment. Spend more time with family and people that build you up in life. Not worth wasting time on people and situations that don't serve you well.

10) Life really centres a lot around food. The preparation, the thinking of it (of what to buy or to eat). It's crazy how much more time I have on my hands drinking juice!

11) I have a lot more willpower than previously thought. Yay me.

12) I have a strong feeling of being not good enough. It's generally the pressure I put on myself but I have felt very replaceable lately which really shows the core belief I have about myself.

14) Courtney from the Bachelor has got to mean...that T.V. show on world...poverty was so moving.

15) After watching Food Inc. (yes I'm probably behind on watching that as well)...I want to become a vegetarian. I knew it was the food industry was bad, but after watching that show I began to realize just how bad it is!! Those poor chickens, and pigs, and cows, and soybeans.

16) I need to date more and get over my fear of rejection...and be less picky.
17) I really love singing and am excited to improve on this skill.

Anywho...I suppose I will stop at those mere 17 realizations. I need to change the quality of my busy life to that of meaning, filled with purposeful activities rather than just "stuff" to pass the time. That does not feed my soul or bring joy to my life.

However with that said, when I was looking for a song for this blog I fell upon John Lennon's "Watchin' The Wheels" and this quote by him (see below), and it helped me see a different side of "wasting time."

"When I was 5 years old, my mother always told me that happiness was the key to life. When I went to school, they asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up. I wrote down ‘happy’. They told me I didn’t understand the assignment, and I told them they didn’t understand life." - John Lennon

Yes I definitely have to be a little more up to date with what's going on in the world, and need to find meaningful activities that bring joy to my world, but it is still ok to be happy doing the simplest things - like watching wheels go round and round....or watching Kourtney and Kim Take New York (*blush*). I am an ambitious, restless person and feel the constant need to improve and go forward, but I need to realize that perhaps I'm not wasting as much time as I think. Everything is happening for a reason each day and sometimes meaningless enjoyment is necessary *sigh*.

For now I hope everyone has a stellar week ahead!!! I'm going to go watch 60 Minutes or read some National Geographic magazines.

Au revoir! (that's me being cultured ;)
Lovely Lianne XO

Watchin' The Wheels - John Lennon Lyrics:

People say I'm crazy, doing what I'm doing
Well, they give me all kinds of warnings to save me from ruin
When I say that I'm okay, well, they look at me kinda strange
"Surely, you're not happy now, you no longer play the game"

People say I'm lazy, dreaming my life away

Well, they give me all kinds of advice designed to enlighten me
When I tell them that I'm doing fine watching shadows on the wall
"Don't you miss the big time, boy. You're no longer on the ball"

I'm just sitting here watching the wheels go round and round

I really love to watch them roll
No longer riding on the merry-go-round
I just had to let it go

Ahhh, people ask me questions, lost in confusion

Well, I tell them there's no problem, only solutions
Well, they shake their heads and they look at me as if I've lost my mind
I tell them there's no hurry, I'm just sitting here doing time

I'm just sitting here watching the wheels go round and round

I really love to watch them roll
No longer riding on the merry-go-round
I just had to let it go
I just had to let it go
I just had to let it go...

Monday, 6 February 2012

Have You Ever Challenged Your Fears to Live Your Dreams? - My Singing Debut

 Accompanied with "Risk" by Paul Brandt. What challenging yourself is all about.

"A bird doesn’t sing because it has an answer, it sings because it has a song."Maya Angelou

Hello my pretties!

I have been slacking as per usual on my writing and I apologize!

This year has certainly been an interesting one so far. Lots of changes occurring which is exciting! As my previous blog post stated, I want to become more vulnerable in my life this year. I want to start challenging my fears and break through the limits I place on myself. I want to live my dreams damnit! SO...deciding to start the year off with a bang, I proceeded to tackle my first challenge that involved a big passion of mine - SINGING!!  Music and singing has always been an important part of my life. Without it I go crazy!! A few months ago my brother and I were in the kitchen with my mom just chatting. My brother was playing around with a new song he had written (which I personally loved since the first day I heard it). There is a female part in this particular song, so to fill it my mom suggested I jump in and sing it that night so he could practice the song. With much surprise we ended up harmonizing quite easily together and a brand new venture was born!!! I felt so much joy that night singing that song, where the feeling of elation was seriously just jumping out of my heart. A few years ago I was doing this course called The Artist's Way which is a twelve week program that helps you unlock your creativity and really just manifest whatever your heart desires. It's about following your heart without any fear. It's about finding what your heart is wanting to do without putting any limits on it - money, time, age, success. It's about letting what is in your heart come out and just be - letting the universe take care of the rest. The running trend for me throughout the course was music, performing, and singing. I've always loved musical theatre (both the singing and dancing) and have always loved watching people sing.  Perhaps it was attending many of my dad's gigs throughout my entire life that brought about this passion, but whatever the reason for its existence, it's been there for as long as I can remember. It was just something I limited myself from doing. I wasn't trained. I didn't feel I was good. I wasn't this. I wasn't that. I had the kind of thinking the course wanted you to obliterate from your life. I've always belted out tunes in my car but never around other people as I didn't want to be criticized for how I sounded. I knew I could carry a tune but would compare myself to other people and thought why bother trying to do something with it. It would take me forever to catch up to THOSE people. I mean...I am 33 right...kind of a late start. However...things changed the night I started singing with my brother. This new venture didn't have to have an outcome of any kind. It just had to be done because I loved doing it. That's it. The passion was let out, and although I was completely insecure and afraid to even sing in front of my family for god sakes, the joy was immense. I felt alive, warm, and felt a buzz that alcohol could never create! It came from the heart! 

Soon after that night, we started having discussions about performing together live which scared the absolute SHIT OUT OF ME!! I've never been a great public speaker or felt comfortable doing anything in front of people throughout my entire life. I remember the massive anxiety I felt when I had to do speeches at school (perhaps it was choosing the lame subject of swimming for my first ever speech that was the catalyst to this problem). I would hope to god each year that boys I liked were NOT in my classes that required presentations. That honestly was the first thing I would think of when I read the list of names that would be in my class for the year, on the first day of school *sigh* The trials of life. I tested people throughout the next few months, letting them hear the recording of the song my brother and I recorded to observe their reaction. I certainly wasn't going to go on stage if I was going to make people's ears bleed. I didn't tell them it was me singing with him either to see if they could tell who it was. None of them had any idea it was me. People were pleasantly surprised when I told them (it began clear to me that my talking voice is much less enjoyable than my singing voice) so I kept practicing with my brother and decided to take the leap of performing live. Doomsday came very quickly, which was scheduled for January 10th, 2012. I was to perform one song at The Moonshine Cafe in Oakville, a cute little bar that is known for its wonderful musical acts and love of music in general. I have become a regular at this place and am generally known for being the extremely loud (probably annoying) girl there. No one at this bar that I got to know over this year had any idea that I actually enjoyed singing and that I could carry a tune somewhat. The only singing they had ever heard from me was the extremely terrible kind where I would pretend to sound like real crap to avoid being vulnerable. SO it was fun to be able to surprise everyone...which is what I did. I felt like I was going to be sick from nerves for the two whole days leading up to this fateful Tuesday night but battled through the feelings and stuck with the decision to perform.  I entered the Moonshine trying to remain calm and act like I was just there to enjoy the nights music. We decided we were going to sing our song third of my brother's three song set. As I sat through his first song waiting for my turn to come, I suddenly forgot all my words. I started to panic. I hadn't written anything down!!!! God help me! I had one more song before I had to go on. However, my brother being the ever so kind brother he is, decided why not surprise Lianne and have her go up during the second song! I suddenly heard..."SO...blah blah blah...something something something...Lianne to the stage". What the fuck dude. Are you kidding me?? Do you not realize I don't know the words anymore?? I slowly walked up to the stage with people around me most likely confused as to what was happening here. I did a sound check and then the song started. My hand was firmly fastened around the mic the entire time - I was trying to play the part of an established musician ;). I hoped to god as my brother started singing that the words would suddenly appear in my blank head space. Thankfully as I started to sing, the words started to come back, but as they started to come back my body started to move. I couldn't stop moving actually for the entire song and it looked like I was doing some horrific aerobic-dance-class-walking-on-the-spot move. I was desperately trying to figure out where to look and was trying not to look like I wanted to run off the stage. As the song went on my nerves started to calm a bit and I began to enjoy myself. I was so thankful to be up there with my brother, singing his incredible song, and living out one of my passions. When the song ended, hearing the cheers of the supportive crowd was unbelievable. I had survived my first performance and was so happy it was at the Moonshine. 

I have learned throughout this process that I have really been afraid expressing my own voice. Not just my singing voice, but of being heard in general. I think its mainly that I've never been confident in what I have to say so I don't really say much of anything. Singing in front of people has been the most vulnerable situation I've ever experienced next to doing a few acting classes with the wonderfully talented Tom Melissis. I felt like my soul was there for all to see and that scared me - A LOT!. I realized how afraid I was of what people thought of me and how uncomfortable it made me feel removing the shell I put around myself for protection. Mike and I have now performed four times together and will be continuing to do more shows throughout this month. It's been a great experience so far and I have signed up to do some singing lessons in hopes to learn some proper breathing techniques and exercises to improve my range. I challenge everyone to do something this year that really brings you out of your comfort zone. Think of a dream that you never felt you could accomplish due to the limitations you've put in front of yourself. Anything is possible really. It's just having the belief that you can do it that makes dreams turn into action.  I never in a million years would have thought I'd be singing in front of people and now I have and I'm so happy I did!!!! 

Next challenge...being less ignorant and more informed with the world's issues. Stay tuned.

Have a great week everyone!

Lovely Lianne :) XO

Mike and I performing at The Moonshine Cafe - 2nd performance night for me.

Lyrics from Paul Brandt:

I’d rather stand on the edge of a cliff
And hang my toes over a bit,
And then jump when they dare me,
Even if it scares me and I get hurt.
I’d rather build my wings on the way down,
Do my best not to fall to the ground
and than laugh at my mistakes
‘cause there only lessons I’ll learn

I’d rather burn with desire deep in my soul,
And love like a fire that’s out of control, and laugh and dance and hope
and chance and kiss
I’d rather live my whole life
with a sense of abandon,
Squeeze every drop out,
no matter what happens.
And not wonder what I've missed
I’d rather risk.

Well I guess I could just play it safe
and forget about love, hope and faith,
with my eye on the shore line,
keeping my boat tied and staying home,

ohhh but I’ll never discover new land
by keeping my feet on the sand
No I’d rather set sail
and get carried away by the storm.

I’d rather burn with desire deep in my soul,
And love like a fire that’s out of control, and laugh and dance and hope
and chance and kiss
I’d rather live my whole life
with a sense of abandon,
Squeeze every drop out,
no matter what happens.
And not wonder what I've missed
I’d rather risk.
I would rather risk

I’d rather burn with desire deep in my soul,
And love like a fire that’s out of control,
I’d live my whole life
with a sense of abandon,
Squeeze every drop out
no matter what happens.
And not wonder what I've missed
Oh I just can’t resist,
The chance to risk

Ohhh live, and love and laugh and dance and fall and chance and kiss

Sunday, 15 January 2012

Have You Ever - New Year...New Adventures :)

Accompanied by "Going Going Gone" by Bob Dylan.

Looking back on 2011 I can say that it was certainly a year of ups and downs. It was a year of challenges, a few heartaches, many road trips and travels, and many accomplishments. I proved to myself that I could face some of my fears and work hard towards fulfilling some of my goals in life. I wanted to really work towards freeing myself FROM myself really. Free myself from my crazy worries, anxiety about being somewhere in life, and just start enjoying the moment and what it has to offer. I traveled to Arizona on my own in April, which was something I've wanted to do for years. I proved to myself that when I put my mind to something it could be manifested. I've always wanted to go to Sedona to do a retreat of some sort and to just get away and learn some things about myself. There is crazy energy around that area and many healers and creative types reside within the town. It was during this trip that I set the goal to start writing more seriously. My mentor in Arizona planted the seed and when I arrived back home I started this blog. Initially I was very hesitant to show this side of myself as there are few people that knew my passion for writing (except for my closest friends). It was my goal to write about things that were more motivational and honest in hopes that people could perhaps relate to the posts and feel better that they weren't alone in thinking the way they thought or feel ashamed of situations they faced in life. The response has been really positive and hopefully this year there will be a lot more to write about. Through the positive feedback I received, I gained the confidence to start writing for an online events magazine called, which allowed me to attend some pretty fun events this summer. I went to many festivals, corporate fundraisers and even a wedding and got the chance to interview musicians, television personalities, and attend the MMVA's!!!! Craziness.

My goals and dreams for this year involve becoming more vulnerable in life - regarding love, life, and people in general. I need to be more direct and honest with how I feel. I also need to face head on the fear that stops me from doing the many things I love and have always wanted to do. Although I am a big extrovert in most situations, I have a pretty shy and timid side. I'm petrified of speaking in public and exposing the more serious, vulnerable side of myself, and of having my voice heard. I'm a sensitive person and have a very serious, reflective side to me. This side of me is rarely exposed unless I know people really well. I have a very bubbly exterior which I've realized has been my shell to protect me from exposing this more sensitive side of myself. This is not to say this side of me isn't real, I just need to become more comfortable with the other sides of me as well.

Beyond those initial goals, I also want to be of more service to others this year and from now on. Living a fulfilling life involves being of service and thinking not only of yourself. It helps your heart and your well-being and makes you feel like you have a purpose and that you are connected to the world. I've always had a passion for helping people and know this is part of my life purpose, but have not done it enough in my opinion. I've spent many of my recent years working on getting myself in order and I feel it's time to look beyond myself. I once spent time volunteering for the Special Olympics and it was rewarding to see the resilience and the sheer happiness the kids and adults displayed each time I saw them. As Martin Luther King has said, "What are you doing for others?"

I feel really great about this a new, big journey is about to ensue.  I have done a lot of work to get myself in the right frame of mind, and am starting really enjoy being me. I wish everyone a successful and happy 2012!!! And that everyone is able to fulfill their dreams!!!!

Dylan's lyrics:

I've just reached a place
Where the willow don't bend
There's not much more to be said
It's the top of the end
I am going
I am going
I am gone.

I am closing the book
On the pages and the text
And I don't really care
Of what happens next
I am just going
I am going
I am gone.

I been hanging on threads
I been playing it straight
Now I've just got to cut loose
Before it gets late
So I am going
I am going
I am gone.

Grandma said, "Boy, go and follow your heart
And you'll be fine at the end of the line
All that's gold doesn't shine
Don't you and your own true love ever part"

I been walking the road
I been living on the edge
Now I've just got to go
Before I get to the ledge
So I am going
I am just going
I am gone.

Lovely Lianne XO