Monday, January 13, 2020

Moving Forward, I'm Looking Back

Moving forward, I'm looking back and goals and aspirations from my past and it's very interesting to me to see how long I have had many of the same goals. On one hand, it makes me realize that I am not doing enough to see some of the simpler things all the way to fruition. On the other hand, I can also see how far I have come personally and how far we've come as a family. A couple of nights ago Dave and I went to bed as we usually do, watched the news and then snuggled in to fall asleep. Typically, Dave is sound asleep in seconds and it takes me a little longer to quiet my mind and actually fall asleep. Not this night, I tossed and turned, the dogs were bothering me being on the bed, I could hear Spencer breathing like he was panting right in my ear, and I just couldn't get comfortable. I stayed in bed trying to talk myself to sleep until I just couldn't do it anymore. I was thinking about my next career as a speaker and that I have my subject matter all wrong, at least my introductory subject matter. I got up and started digging into my old ZipperBack Gloves and Intentional Winning blogs and guess what I found? A post from 10/22/2010 that read -

Yep, It's True...I Have Doubts.

While talking to my friend Alice this week, I admitted to her that I have trouble telling people my dreams and aspirations. I could feel her bewilderment across the phone line. I went on to explain that in junior high and high school I tried out for cheerleading every year and never made the squad. I never told anyone about the tryouts, or really talked about it at all, but I went ahead and tried out never really believing I could make the team. Guess what? I never made the team. Some of my girlfriends that did make the squad did nothing but talk about try-outs. Everyone knew they were practicing, creating routines, and couldn't do this or that because they had to practice for try-outs. I just couldn't bring myself to tell people I wanted to be a cheerleader as I thought they would think I wasn't pretty enough or skinny enough, or who-knows-what enough!

Fast forward to today. My dream is to make my living as a Speaker teaching my Intentional Winning concepts, sharing my journey as an Entrepreneur with ZipperBack Gloves, and right now educating folks about loan modification. As I speak up (pun intended!) and share with people that I want to speak, as soon as they ask for my resume or ask for samples of my work, I cower. I find myself right back in that 15-year-old girl’s body feeling like I'm not enough. I know I'm enough! I know I'm a dynamic speaker with wonderful, useful things to share.

My point to all of this is that no matter how self-assured one is, there is always room for doubt. The trick is to send it on its way as soon as it pops up. When I recently had someone ask for my speaking resume, I waited to reply. I waited to let my knee-jerk, insecure reaction subside so I could send a reply that depicts the real me, me that is qualified to speak on their radio show. I sent them an excellent reply. I didn't get the gig, but I didn't back out either, so to me, that's a win!

It's okay to have doubts and feel fear as long as you can also feel sure and confident when faced with the former. You can, I know you can because I can and I'm no different than you are. We are all magnificent and more than enough!

Here we are 9+ years later and only last year did I make significant strides toward that goal of being a paid speaker. Yes, paid! It's time this year for me to make my dreams a priority. I've set Mason up to be any kind of success he wants to be, it's now up to him to create the forward momentum. That's true for Dave as well, he's now retired and in the driver's seat to steer his dream-machine wherever he wants to go. It's a strange feeling to be standing here at this point in my life and realize that nobody really needs me, I can do the things I want to do, for me. Don't misunderstand, our family is tight and of course, we need each other, but not in the same dependant way it's been in the past. 

Today I am not going to be that insecure young girl, I am going to not only talk about my dreams and aspirations, but I am also going to take the actions that move me toward them. While I was reading back on my life, I was also feeling inspired and making notes of the things I can do right now to make those dreams not come true, come true. Does that sound familiar? That is the very premise of Intentional Winning in Life, sharing with others that there are things one can do right now to start moving in the direction of their dreams. It's 2020, it's time to start taking my own advice and walking the walk. Just watch me make this happen!

Monday, January 6, 2020

A Recap of 2019

Happy New Year! I’m really excited about 2020 and I’m already off to a great start. I’ll share more about that momentarily, as I want to reflect on last year and the clear theme that made it’s way through my life in 2019 and that is Reunion.

I found significant relationships from my past come back around to be active in my life again. All three of the people I’m writing about are very special to me but none as much as Micheal J., the child I gave up for adoption 29 years ago. I’ve shared the story of how this came to be in earlier posts so you can see details there but Michael was the first of what would be 3 reunions last year. Our relationship has been growing and I’m so happy to say it’s been very easy. We’ve talked openly and continue to work toward a relationship that is more normal than weird, LOL!

The next reunion was with who was once one of my best friends, Elli. Back in 1998 I did something that hurt her immensely, so deeply that she severed our friendship. I was devastated and I wasn’t sure what I could do at the time to try to make it right. I certainly learned a number of lessons but the price was high, I missed this woman so many times through the years. It’s no surprise that we have mutual friends and occasionally I would see her in social media threads and this last September, I sent her a private message asking if we could be friends again. She was incredibly gracious and agreed to have a conversation with me. I may have had just enough tequila to give me the courage to send that original private message but I’m so glad I did. We made time to talk on the phone and it felt as if no time had passed at all. I am so sincerely grateful for her willingness to let the past be in the past and welcome a new beginning in the present.

Finally, our family recently reunited with our longtime friend Mike B. Mike wanted to reunite a year ago and I just wasn’t ready. It wasn’t until our anniversary in November that I was watching our wedding video and watched the footage of me speaking to why it was significant that Mike gave me away when I married Dave. It made me so sad and mad that I reached out to him via text. That lead to a conversation, and then a meal with our family, to Mike joining us at our annual Friends Thanksgiving. It was really nice having him there, but it will take some time to heal wounded hearts. There is finally a willingness (on my part) so that means there is hope for a new normal, it will never be the same but that doesn’t mean it can’t still be good.

I’ve said it many times through the years but never lived it quite to this degree, Don’t put a period where God has intended a comma. It’s hard to imagine sometimes when relationships end, or people hurt us that there could come a time that we could make amends and come back together. I’m grateful for being forgiven and I’m very willing to forgive, I think this is a wonderful way to say goodbye to 2019 and welcome 2020.

As far as the new year, I’m off to a great start. I’ve already co-produced an event, moderated a panel of speakers, sent in two applications to speak later this year, and wrote my first real estate offer for 2020 - and it's only January 6th!  I have big plans to really figure out what is going on with my health (is it menopause or something more?), I’m super busy with real estate and it’s possible we can be debt free before June 1st, and I plan on booking at least 3 paid speaking engagements this year. Oh, and I’m going to get my book written, come hell or high-water I’m making it happen. What’s on tap for you this year? Happy New Year!

Wednesday, January 1, 2020

New Year Tradition - Peppermint Whipped Cream Cake

Happy New Year! Welcome, 2020. We ate cake! My traditional white cake with peppermint whipped cream & crushed candy canes and new this year, chocolate cake with peppermint ganache and whipped cream. I’m not exactly sure that this tradition was intentional but I do know that the first one was for the new year 2014. I baked it because I wanted to make something light, bright, and energizing and there was no other flavor that could fill that order except peppermint. Whipped cream keeps it light, and the candy canes, to me, are bright. This cake is not really sweet at all, in fact, it may disappoint some but I love it! You can make it sweeter if you want by simply adding more sugar when you whip the cream, but I like it light and bright. Want the recipe? Here you go, consider it my gift to you to say, “Happy New Year!” This photo is actually the very first peppermint new year cake I made in 2014.

Kathy's New Year Peppermint Cake
1 box white cake mix
4 eggs (whites only)
1 1/4 C milk
1/3C oil
1 Qt Heavy Whipping Cream
3/4C sugar (more to taste)
8-10 Candy Canes - crushed
2-4 TBS Peppermint extract

*Mix and bake the cake to package directions making the changes I note below. I add an extra egg (whites only if you want your cake really white) and use milk instead of water as it gives a box mix a more homemade flavor. Bake the cake to box directions. *Once the cake cools put it in the freezer for at least an hour, overnight is even better. 
*Whip heavy cream with 1/2 - 3/4C sugar, and 1 TBS peppermint extract. Whip the cream to stiff peaks. 
*Crush candy canes, set aside. 
*Slice both rounds in half and start stacking them on a cake plate. Spread a layer of whipped cream and then sprinkle crushed candy canes on the whipped cream and continue doing this until you put the top of the cake on. Ice the whole cake with the remaining whipped cream and sprinkle the rest of the crushed candy canes on top or wherever you want them. 
*I have silver star confetti that I use for my New Year cake because it makes me happy, but it's pretty with just the candy canes.

Modifications -  You can add 1 to 2 TBS peppermint extract to the cake mix if you want more peppermint flavor overall.

*The cake is easier to handle/ice when it’s frozen and it actually makes the cake more moist when it’s time to eat.