Week 6 Update

December 24-30, 2014

Hope everyone had a great holiday! It’s odd being in the sun for the holidays, but who’s complaining?! This week we took advantage of being settled in Orlando and took in some of the local activities, and as well did a quick trip to Miami to visit friends.




Christmas festivities


Big baptist church Christmas eve service (we wanted a carol sing and this was the place)


For Christmas Eve we called lots of family and friends, and as well had a competition to see who could put a puzzle together the fastest (clearly we are stellar at rainy day activities). Okay, Jackson won by 4 minutes.



Our “Christmas tree”



We learned our friends Steve and Nadine (from Toronto) were in Miami (only a 3.5 hr drive from Orlando) so we drove down for a little visit.





We did a date night just the two of us as well



Improv Show


This great group called Penguin Knife Fight does a Monday night show each week at Natura Cafe. Best $3 we spent this whole trip! Erin got involved at one point as a volunteer. This is definitely something we want to get into (doing improv and not just watching).



Afternoon tea


We did afternoon tea at Infusion Cafe (which also has a craft co-op retail space in it). We ate dainty things and did a little new year’s resolution work/play. We used Susannah Conway’s awesome (free) workbook – Unravelling 2015 which you can download yourself. It helps you wind down the past year while dreaming about and gearing up to the new year. Awesome exercise!


We also had an evening on our own where Jackson relaxed in a quiet cafe and Erin went to a bustling cafe for an open mic night/spoken word event (Dandelion Communitea Cafe). “Diverse Word” was hosted by Shawn Welcome so check out one of his poems in this video:



Other highlights:

-Erin continues with guitar lessons from Ben Zier-Vogel who is an awesome teacher!! If you’re in Orlando and want a great experience learning guitar, Ben’s your guy. Contact him

-Tried another Unitarian Universalist Church (UU Society) in Orlando that is lay led by members of the congregation. This week the theme was the war on Christmas.



1 US state this week (FL), 16 in total during the trip

1232 kms this week (766 mi), 5879 total on the trip (3653 mi)

Spent $765.12 this week, $6136.83 total



  1. Hi Erin, I am using the workbook you suggested – Unravelling the year ahead. It is very useful, but hard. I had a massage this morning and told the amateur that the hardest thing was being honest with myself. AS you know I live alone and one of the hardest things is confronting myself and facing the truth about me – the good, the bad , and the in between.

    Also what do I really desire? I turn 70 in July. Time is passing.
    I am in the middle of this process and am starting 2015.

    What is you word for this year?

    Thanks for this,



    1. Thanks for your comment Lynne! I definitely hear where you’re coming from in terms of knowing ourselves and being honest with ourselves. As someone who has a huge heart as well as a fire for community contribution as you do, maybe it’s just a matter of perspective. You’re already making a big contribution in what you do for volunteer and consulting work. So start there and think of what other ideas have come to mind over the years when you told yourself you’d put that in the file for later. Now is later and maybe now is the right time. Or possibly this can be an exercise for you in accounting for what you already like about your life, habits, connections, etc and you just get to remind yourself to keep up on those things that have been satisfying over the past year.

      Also, be generous with yourself. It’s good to be honest and be in reality about where things are at with ourselves, but it’s also helpful to start from a perspective that you are whole and complete and anything you add or transform is simply a new project you’re taking on (not a must-do or anything with shame or guilt). I’m reminding myself that it’s great to learn from the past, but it is meant to stay in the past. The future is empty until we create something with it.

      My word is “creating” for the year. I like that it’s an action word. I also like that is feels experimental and flexible as if it gives permission to explore, express myself but not be too attached to a perfect or planned outcome. What’s yours?
      Cheers, Erin



  2. Great Week update! Loved my phone message waiting for me over Christmas. I saved it on my phone so I can enjoy it over and over again ( I still have my birthday one on my phone too to listen to when I’m really missing you guys). The guitar playing sounds wonderful, you are doing great! xoxo to you both



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