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Okay, I’ll admit it – last year, while visiting family in Los Angeles, I had an ulterior motive.  In addition to spending time with my sister, brother-in-law, and nephews, I held out hope that I’d find a way to attend the Golden Globes.  I’m a dreamer and positive thinker with a tendency to raise my hopes too high sometimes.  I hoped, prayed, and pleaded for my Golden Globe request to be answered. Despite my positive attitude and hopeful outlook, nothing magical occurred.

My wonderful trip involved going to the beach nearly every day, drinking coffee and looking out at the Pacific Ocean from the Starbucks by the Sea (that’s what we call it anyway), and playing chess with my eldest nephew.  The weather was perfect, the days filled with laughter and love, and my heart overwhelmed with peace and joy.

Pacific Coffee Time

Pacific Coffee Time

The California coast radiates with a low-key atmosphere.  Despite the congested highways and busy tourist attractions, there’s an appreciation for life’s little moments.  Just when I get a taste of it, my vacation ends and I’m back to the hustle and bustle of suburbia.  Upon returning to work after my week in L.A. last year, I struggled to keep that laissez-faire atmosphere in cubicle city.  It wasn’t always easy until I realized that I needed to change my perspective.  When I did so, the world around me smiled and I found joy in the smallest of details.

I am a writer.  I make my living based on my love of the written word.  There are so many other artistic individuals who can not say the same.  They are existing from day-to-day, waiting for a big break that will take them out of their current situation.  I write because doing so matters, not only to me but to others.  To know that the words I choose make a difference in even the smallest of capacities, reminds me that I am a part of something more profound than sitting at a desk.  I am part of a community.  I am proud of the work I accomplish and the outlook I strive to maintain, even in the midst of challenges.

As I make plans for my next Los Angeles vacation, I do so with the understanding that life is what you make of it.  I look forward to going back to the beach, laughing with my nephews, shopping at Hollywood & Highland, and having my picture taken with the TV Guide logo in the background.  Instead of putting my effort into the unlikelihood of getting tickets to an award show that doesn’t sell tickets, I’m planning to spend the day in the company of family.  Maybe we’ll even do a themed dinner again in honor of the award show.

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