New Year New You

I want to be new too

“New year resolutions”, “No resolutions”, “I’m on a mission”, “It’s my year”, and even “God got me!!!”. The stars are aligned to make a resolution.

I’m not saying your resolution will crumble, fall apart, or wither on the to-do list you created it on. I am saying that It’s on you. Yes, You; the man or woman in the mirror staring back at you.  It's whether or not you are willing to go all in for yourself and your family. This is a new year for the new you.

Make this the year you make a decision to "Change or be Chained"! Chained to the things that keep you from forging ahead towards the best you. That’s all that matters. This could be the best year of your life.  Doesn’t that excite you?

Today is...

A few questions come to mind as we progress through the beginning of 2018.

  1. Will you avoid the folks with negative attitudes and join in on the fun?
    No matter what it looks like, you can and will achieve that which you believe!!! Remember “Rudy”? He finally got his day on the field for Notre Dame.  Even though he was ridiculed by even those closest to him. Stay Positive in 2018.
  2. Have you set goals for the new year or are you still “trying to figure things out?
    I learned a long time ago if you want to be successful, do what successful people do. Plan ahead. Jim Rohn said his mentor told him once he started "setting goals", his life changed. Once you set goals, pursue them with focus and determination.  What is written down gets done. Maintain the "I will succeed attitude", no matter the obstacles. This means not being afraid to fail.
  3. What would you do if you knew you couldn’t fail?
    I’m sure the list is long.  So go ahead and do it.  The best way to face your fears is head on. Winning is tough, but losing is tougher.  You’ll thank yourself for it one day.

While traveling the path to success, pay attention to new opportunities. You may come across a situation where you can be of assistance to someone.  These may be times when you can learn something new that will eventually benefit you.

It can come from nowhere

Before I began my entrepreneurial journey, I was working for my mentor, helping him with odd jobs around his office.   One day he asked me to help him run his business. At the time I was working overnight at a copy center, making $400.00 a month. No that is not missing a zero.  However, I did not agree to work with him immediately. I told him I wanted my own office one day and I had to think about it.  Lol. I had big plans for those $400.00

What he said next caught my attention, “You’re not doing that now and besides, what do you think you will learn from me?”

If I'd had said no?

I would have missed an incredible opportunity. Now, 22 years later, I'm still in business. I share this story with you to encourage you to not only recognize opportunity but to grab it with both hands.  Those rare moments are often pivotal moments in our lives.  My parting advice, be confident.  Feeling confident has an amazing impact on your life, it's the difference between "I could" and "I did". Learn to believe in yourself, because your life depends on it. You got this!

Whatever “this” is for you. When you set the expectation that you will achieve success, and eventually you will. The world will reward you with what you put into it. Just be ready when it does.





I hope this message inspires you.

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What's Changed 

The 1970s and 80s

The time in Britain of the emergence of  Queen, Genesis, Dire Straits and Pink Floyd

They must put out quality music and equally be good on stage to pay their wages. The 80s would also see the emergence of Duran Duran, Bon Jovi and Guns and Roses. Now, ask yourself the question, where are the band’s and groups that emerged in the 90's? We all know the names of the Beatles, but then Stock Aitken and Waterman emerge with their throw away pop, they offer the start of the X Factor generation that paid one million pound contracts. Should they fall like Steve Brookstein, that’s just small change.

The 90s into 2000+ sees the rise of one-hit wonders such as 2 unlimited or Chesney Hawks but the music history won't remember their name. In the UK, I can struggle to list any artists who have any real longevity

  1. Robbie Williams
  2. Take That
  3. Oasis

To be honest, in 5 minutes they were all I could think of, but then when we go back to the eighties and before

  1. Madonna
  2. Kylie
  3. Queen
  4. The rolling stones
  5. Bon Jovi
  6. Billy Joel
  7. Tears for fears

Need I go on?

Today’s artists are guaranteed their wage regardless, they do not have to care for their audience as the artists before the X Factor generation. You cannot blame the Simon Cowell’s of this world, as they only supply what we want. Whether or not the X Factor winner is a success matters little. Next, you have the group phenomenon, the group becomes successful, say Boyzone, but after a few years, they split and the likes of Ronan have a solo career. The phrase kerching comes to mind.

Another thing of note, in the UK at least why are the bands of the eighties emerging such as tears for fears and even Chic having large Radio backed gigs.

I leave you with a question, who’s fault is all of this, the likes of Stock Aitken and Waterman, or us for lapping up whatever they throw at us?

Mighty Lark

Mighty Lark

Mike Lewis

Mike Lewis, (AKA The Mighty Lark,) began painting, drawing and illustrating professionally in the summer of 2003. He holds a BFA in Illustration from Syracuse University and an MFA in Studio Arts from Maine College of Art..

The Mighty Lark's work has appeared in magazines, coloring books, zines, and journals as well as on logos, t-shirts, phone cases, and tote bags. He has taught 2D Design, Digital Foundations and Illustration at Southern Maine Community College since January of 2013.


Mike's whimsical sketches are both fantasy and reality. His sketches have both a cartoon and photorealistic quality. Check out the self-portrait here.


Mike became obsessed with the idea of spinning drawings, images seen through kaleidoscopes and the way that recreation of an object blurs, like a visual game of telephone. As the drawing is shaded multiple times, each individual item is the same, but different.

A Gentleness Practice

"John," the first piece in his new series of Sud Busters. He is in love with the subject matter and the colors. "I was able to really paint and get lost in the environment. The making was a success, and the time that it took to finish it just sort of appeared here and there in and about the space in the timeline of my life".

Mike Lewis

Mike lives and works in Portland, Maine with his wife, Courtney, his son, Austin, and their two cats Jasper Johns and Momo. He is found either at his studio in the State Theater building or at home with a cat or toddler in his lap or working at his drafting table. A native Northern New Yorker, Lewis is the son of a Forest Ranger and a substitute school teacher. Mighty Lark is an avid reader and a prolific audiophile.



I'm Too Young To Be A Grandparent

Grandparent at 47 - What Would You Do?

Some people are becoming grandparents in their late 40s. If you are in your 30s now, can you imagine being a grandparent in the next 10 years?

While working six days a week and running a business, at the age of 47 I became a grandparent. To be honest I didn’t have time to be a fully present grandparent. As the sole operator of a business, I took calls 24/7 and was responsible for the day-to-day management of the business, the clients and other services it offered.

I was also single then, and my lifestyle didn’t fit my preconceived image of what a grandmother was.

Hell, I didn’t knit, bake, and I didn’t even know how to tie my hair up in a bun!

I spent most of my time in jeans and boots, training dogs.

What kind of grandparent was I supposed to be?

What Do Today’s Grandparents Look Like?

In the back of my mind these questions began to creep in:

  • What was I supposed to do?
  • Where did I fit in?
  • Would I be expected to babysit?
  • Cripes! Would I have to change a nappy! I hadn’t done that for 25 years, and I wasn’t sure I knew how to anymore.
  • What would this new human being think of me? Would I disappoint him? Would he even like me?
  • Should I try to force him to like me? How did one do that? With gifts or candy?
  • No, that seemed fake. I had to discover a new way.
  • Oh, boy! It did my head in!

Where Were My Role Models?

My parents were still alive and quite healthy when I became a grandparent. They lived thousands of miles away and weren’t much support at all. What I wanted was someone to tell me what to do, and what to think. Sadly, that wasn’t going to happen.

In my circle of friends, there were some other grandparents, but they were older than I was. They smiled and nodded when I tried to talk to them about what I was feeling. On reflection, I think they probably thought I was worrying about nothing.

The Changing Role of Grandparents

I was born in the early 1960s. My grandparents had been born in the early 1900s. I can’t even imagine what their lives must have been like. On my mother’s side, my grandparents had a limited education. They could read and write, but life was a struggle. From stories I have heard, money was scarce, and children were a necessary burden that complicated and messed lives up.

My paternal grandmother was better off financially. However, her life more difficult when she separated from her husband. I don’t think they divorced, but when she returned to England with the children he stayed in South Africa. As far as I know, they never saw each other again, and my grandfather died over there from health complications in his mid 40’s.

Before I was born my grandfathers had both passed and I met both my grandmothers only a handful of times. These rather strange and distant women were aloof, and I was a bit scared of them. They didn’t attempt to relate to me at all.

When we immigrated to Australia in the 1970’s I was never to see them or have contact with them again. I have a photo of my paternal grandmother taken on her 90th birthday, but nothing else.

What I have realized

Today I feel these people, whom I owe my genes and history to, are as remote and distant to me as the strangers I pass on the street. I know who they were, but I don’t know them. They don’t know me because I wasn’t a part of their lives.

I didn’t want this to continue. Never in the history of the world have grandparents had so many opportunities. Our age, gender or social status does not define us. We have access to the internet, we are fitter, stronger and wealthier than any other generation of grandparents in the history of the world.

I don’t know about other young grandparents reading this, but I’m going to use these things and more to create better relationships with my grandkids than I experienced. I think we all deserve it.

About Susan Day

GrandmaSusan Day is a passionate author, avid blogger and, of course, a grandmother. She wants to empower all grandparents to build meaningful relationships with their grandchildren. Discover here the Top 10 Things Happy Grandparents Never Regret Doing.

Susan lives in country Australia with four dogs, three bossy cats, three rescue guinea pigs, and an errant kangaroo.

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