The sun was lowest, the night was longest, but with winter solstice behind us I started my countdown to Spring. There won’t be a White Christmas, and the weather, just like me, has its ups and downs. Either way, the days are getting longer, and it is only 85 days till Spring and exactly 178 days till Summer!
Of course, another countdown has begun. In a few days, we will say goodbye to 2013 and welcome a new year. So often we wish for a good year, a better year, a successful one, but how about looking back and reflecting on the one that just is about to slip into the past? There are so many things I am grateful for. Exactly one year ago today (December 24), I received my Green Card, and my son not only graduated from film school, but he also went West to work in his field. I miss him, of course, but thank God for planes. Los Angeles has not seen the last of me.
In 2013, I set out to shed the weight I had been carrying around with me, and weight of all sorts it was. I started running and, thanks to the encouragement of dear friends, I ran my first race. It was a modest 5K that Laura Spencer and I set out to conquer, but to me it felt like climbing Mount Everest. I never knew what a runner’s high was until I experienced it and I got hooked on running. I discovered a whole community of supporting and caring running buddies; even when I did hit a roadblock, I kept moving.
So, minus a gallbladder, I did run a 10K in Anaheim, and it was simply heaven when at the finish line my son and my future daughter-in-law were waiting for me. Encouraged and cranking it up a notch, I did run 10 miles in Orlando in October. Eventually, I also did shed the physical weight, and I am now racing to my final goal, as far as my feet will carry me. I am training for my first half Marathon, and I shudder at the idea of how this will eventually feel.
In the meantime, I have traveled in Europe, Canada, and the United States. My all-time favorite Mouse did see a lot of me this year and was the subject of 39 published stories, including Epcot during the holidays and Christmas decorations at Disney resorts. Last but not least, I am working on the seventh edition of my guide book to Walt Disney World with Kids.
I have been blessed to be able to report about my trials and tribulations, and I think 2014 will bring more of the same. Sometimes, more of the same is a good thing.
But I nearly forgot, there was one more thing I did in 2013 that was just unheard of: I learned how to drive a car. So going forward, may all who cross my path in the New Year be safe and may 2014 bring many more happy trails.