2017 Year in review

It is true that many times I felt days were longer yet the year is short. It’s 2018 everyone and just like that, all we could do is to look back how we spent year 2017!

Can you believe that?

To summarize our year, we had a great one.

-I’ll start off with the girls who are now both attend full-time at school (Marie is a second-grader and Olivia is a kindergartner!). It’s interesting how different it is not having a child at home from morning until late afternoon on weekdays. They like school  a lot which is a good thing.

-My husband and I both got new jobs! My husband still does truck driving. Later this year, he switched company that gives him better hours…and pay. I also went back to work full-time. Two years ago, right after we came back from our Philippine vacation, I decided to quit my custodial job to pursue my writing and to stay home full-time. It was great to be home with our daughters who didn’t have to attend daycare. I was enjoying it the first few months. The house was always tidy and the miles I put in on walking were crazy (sometimes 6 miles a day!) but when I published my book and the girls started school this year, I thought staying home for a year was enough for me. Although I loved it but I knew it was time for me to go back to work as full-time. And I found working at the newspaper place in Fremont which I’ve been with them for five months now. Yey!

-We rarely got sick this year. Health is really important to me. I’m so glad that the girls didn’t have any problem except Olivia got pink eye one morning and missed a day of school and Marie ran temperature. There was no hospitalization needed and I accept the fact that no matter how hard I try to feed them good, virus/bacteria have ways of sneaking in. I never got sick either except mild temperature and headaches which I found out it was due to lack of sleep, not drinking too much water and not eating enough protein! My husband did a few doctor visits though but nothing really serious. I just hope this year, his health will be better and better!

-I published my memoir! I was so happy that I published my first book, Pesos to Pennies. After working on it for two years, my immigration story was told. It was a big project for me but somehow I’m so proud to prove myself that tackling this book writing is possible with dedication and focus. (Please check it out here!)

-I worked as a sub-librarian at the public library.

-I attended a few book signings

-I gave a speech at the church

-I work with three exchange students.

-I’ve learned more about relationships.

-My second book is under progresssss…

Things to work on…

-time management

-setting goals

-setting priorities/commitments

-read more books. I need to invest time on reading. I reinforce to our daughter the reading habits, yet I slip away most of the time. But starting today, I’ll read even if it’s only 30 minutes a day.

-finish the first draft of my second book. I’m still in the process of collecting all ideas and to put them together is where the real work on book writing is. I just need an uninterrupted time to sit down and go over my draft and let the work begin!

-be more spiritual

-be more consistent on exercising

-manage our finances well.

-enjoy life more!

I hope you’re all having a great start of the year!

Gladys Starkey

Happy New Year!

I hope you’re having a great start of new year. We’ve been staying home since Saturday except my husband who did a quick trip to the store to pick up pizza and buy drinking water. We did a little bit of cleaning around the house and spent the rest of the day watching a movie/sports/cartoons.

We ordered pizza on Friday night and we got a free movie. I picked Wonder Woman.The girls didn’t sit with us to finish watching the movie. They spent more time in their bedroom watching something on their phone. My husband and I ended up watching it and for me, it’s an okay movie.

On Sunday morning, we didn’t bother to go to church because it was cold. We had breakfast pizza ordered and I did laundry and sweeping the floor. Since we had nothing else to do in the afternoon, I took a long nap which was good because we planned on staying up until midnight for New Year countdown which is a family tradition.

To celebrate New Year’s Eve I cooked some food with Marie’s help. She made her first Mexican Tortilla Rollups that made her so proud. It’s super easy to make. It’s a mixture of cream cheese, taco seasoning (we used Fajita since we’re out of taco seasoning), shredded lettuce and taco shredded cheese. All you have to do is to spread it on tortilla then roll them up and slice them. My husband likes it that Marie had to tell him to wait until it’s dinner time, but that didn’t work. She complained that her daddy ate six of them (which almost half of what she made!). Oh well.

I made pork roast, dressing and corn as my husband requested while I made Bihon (Filipino noodles), rice and fried pork belly marinated in soy sauce and lemon. We had store bought chocolate cake for dessert. We finished our supper after 10 and they stayed up for a while and we knew they were getting tired so I asked them to put their pajamas on and brushed their teeth and get ready for bed. Olivia wanted me to hold her and we read book together while Marie was in her bedroom reading Junie B. Jones book. It didn’t last long and the two of them fell asleep.

My husband and I both watched the New Year countdown. I didn’t go to bed until one o’clock in the morning.

I’m so thankful for the wonderful 2017. We had a good year and hoping this year will be another good year.

I hope all of us we do!

Happy New Year, my friends!

Another year, another perspective in life!

Gladys Starkey



Simple joy

We’re not planning on going out this weekend. We will stay home until I go back to work which is on Tuesday. The weather is so cold. Before going home last night, I did my grocery shopping and between celebrating New Year and preparing for this weather, the store was busy. I made sure we have all the food that will get us through. Last year, we went to a friend’s house to celebrate New Year’s Eve. This year, we will all be home. I’ll cook something and we’ll enjoy the cake I just bought.

I woke up early this morning when my husband started getting ready for work. We let the girls sleep in while I started doing some chores. I started the laundry and clean the kitchen.

When Olivia woke up, I fed her a bowl of cereal then she helped me prepared making homemade bread. Marie woke up late and I let them watch their favorite movie, The Descendants, for gazillion times.

My simple joy is simply staying home with the girls and getting some cleaning done. Of course, I’ll do some writing too. By the end of the day, we’ll do some reading or clean our closets. I’ll also clean our fridge and see what leftover food we can still eat to avoid food waste.

Happy New Year, my friends!

Gladys Starkey