The Back Nine Holes: A Life Lesson No Matter Where You Are In Life

The Back Nine Holes: A Life Lesson No Matter Where You Are In Life

If you’re like me, you tend to filter what emails you actually read – especially the chain FWD, FWD emails – that you receive along with the 1,000 other shopping, trends, news and junk delivered daily. On this Tuesday morning in Santiago, Chile, I opened up my email to find a chain email started from a man named Harold (whom I don’t know) that eventually was sent to my uncle and later my dad. My dad and I have a series of daily ‘daddio-grams’ that are inspirational messages about life. I took five minutes to read this email and it was phenomenal and transformational. It certainly gives you perspective, a good laugh, and also a new viewpoint of living life on purpose.

I am sharing with all of you and keeping the email in its original format. Please read, reflect and recycle the message. I’m not sure who originally wrote this, but they deserve all the credit and more. Enjoy! 

The Back Nine Holes

You know … time has a way of moving quickly and catching you unaware of the passing years. It seems just yesterday that I was young, just having kids, and embarking on my new life with my degree and my mate. Yet in a way, it seems like eons ago, and I wonder where all the years went. I know that I lived them all. I have glimpses of how it was back then and of all
my hopes and dreams.

But, here it is… the back nine of my life and it catches me by surprise… How did I get here so fast? Where did the years go and where did my youth go?

I remember well seeing older people through the years and thinking that those older people were years away from me and that I was only on the first hole and the back nine was so far off that I could not fathom it or imagine fully what it would be like.

But, here it is … my friends are retired and getting gray … they move slower and I see an older person now. Some are in better and some worse shape than me … but, I see the great change … Not like the ones that I remember who were young and vibrant … but, like me, their age is beginning to show and we are now those older folks that we used to see and never thought we’d become.

Each day now, I find that just taking a shower is a real target for the day! And taking a nap is not a treat anymore … it’s mandatory! Because if I don’t on my own free will … I may just fall asleep where I sit!

And so … now I enter into this new season of my life unprepared for all the aches and pains and the loss of strength and ability to go and do things that I wish I had done … and never did !!! But, at least I know, that though I’m on the back nine, and I’m not sure how long it will last
… 2 or 3, or 15 or 20 years? … this I do know, that when it’s over on this earth…it’s over. Does a new adventure begin? Only our faith in God will tell. Yes, I have regrets. There are things I wish I hadn’t done …things I should have done … but there are many things I’m happy to have done. It’s all in a lifetime.

If you’re not on the back nine yet … let me remind you, that it will be here faster than you think. So, whatever you would like to accomplish in your life, please do it quickly! Don’t put things off too long!! Life goes by quickly. Do what you can today, as you can never be sure whether you’re on the back nine or not!

You have no promise that you will see all the seasons of your life … so, live for today and say all the things that you want your loved ones to remember … and hope that they appreciate and love you for all the things that you have done for them in all the years past!

“Life” is a gift. The way you live your life is your gift to those who come after. Make it a fantastic one.


Remember “It is health that is real wealth and not those pieces of gold and silver. LIVE HAPPY IN 2018!


  • Your kids are becoming you … but your grandchildren are perfect … so far!
  • Going out is good … coming home is better!
  • You forget names … but it’s OK because some people forgot they even knew you!
  • You realize you’re never going to be really good at anything like golf.
  • The things you used to care to do, you are not as interesting anymore, but you really do care that you aren’t as interested.
  • You sleep better on a lounge chair with the TV ‘ON’ than in bed. It’s called “pre-sleep.”
  • You miss the days when everything worked with just an “ON” and “OFF” switch.
  • You tend to use more 4 letter words … “what?”…”when?”… ?
  • You notice everything they sell in stores is “sleeveless”!
  • What used to be freckles are now liver spots.
  • Everybody whispers ! … you have come to expect that people will repeat what they just said to you.
  • You have 3 sizes of clothes in your closet … 2 of which you will never
    wear again.
  • … But Old is good in some things: Old Songs, Old movies, and best of all, OLD FRIENDS!

Stay well, “OLD FRIEND!” Send this on to other “Old Friends!” and let them laugh in AGREEMENT!

It’s Not What You Gather, But What You Scatter That Tells What Kind of Life You Have Lived.


I’d love to hear your take and thoughts on this? How does this relate to living your life on purpose, today?
photo credit:

One Jump At A Time: The Time I Went Skydiving in Portugal with 20 People

One Jump At A Time: The Time I Went Skydiving in Portugal with 20 People

I believed I could fly and I kinda did. As you already know, I have a bit of adventure in my bones. I am spending all 2017 with 65+ strangers traveling across the world, living in a new city each month. This makes it easy to fulfill my adventurous soul. However, recently, I tested my adventure throttle but deciding to jump out of a plane in Portugal, near Lisbon with 20 people. It was a “fun birthday activity” for some in the group and turned out to be one of the best experiences I’ve had to date. It was definitely a Sunday Funday to remember.

Now that I am safe and sound (on the ground), here’s what I can report about my first skydiving experience:

  • The nerves leading up to it are real. I was scared, nervous and all of the emotions you would expect leading up to the day. I even planned my last dinner and breakfast — potentially — in the event, I didn’t have a safe landing. Whew!
  • Go for it! As I mentioned, it’s scary. But once you commit to it, it’s amazing. I’ve never had a rush quite like this in my life.
  • Capture it. Saving money is my forte, especially since I’ve committed to traveling around the world for one-year. However, I spent the extra money (70euros) for a video to remember this. In case I decided to never do it again, I can relive this crazy 55 seconds from 4200 meters up for the rest of my life. Ahhhhh!
  • Share it with someone. This is a big deal. If you can share it with people (I don’t recommend 20 at once), I would. I can confidently say that the group that I jumped with and I became closer over this. We all were scared shitless, even those who had done it several times before. It was a new place, new faces, and a new experience altogether. Also, aside from jumping with a buddy or buddies, you must share it with your loved ones and friends after. This helps you relive it all over again and reaffirm to your loved ones and friends that you live life to its fullest and on the edge…literally.
  • Enjoy. I am certainly good for a while and possibly forever when it comes to jumping out of a plane again. Although, my emotions were running so high and Io adrenaline this entire day (and even before), I would consider doing it again in a few years for two reasons. The first is to feel the rush all over again and just be. The second, is now that I know what to expect, I think I would enjoy the experience more for what it is;  55 seconds goes fast.

Skydiving was an activity I will never forget. The rush, nerves, adrenaline, and freedom you feel at the edge of the place and jumping out is one you can’t describe with words. After all, those who do not jump will never fly!

Choose Your Chapter Wisely:    It Shapes Your Life Story

Choose Your Chapter Wisely: It Shapes Your Life Story

I’d like to share the powerful poem, Autobiography in 5 Short Chapters by Portia Nelson. This poem is printed near my bed and I wake up to it every morning. It teaches you in just five short chapters, the importance of chapters in our life and how mindset about the chapter you are in can dictate your outlook and outcome of your entire life. It teaches you to observe yourself, focus on perspective (how you look at things) and ultimately experience your current (and past) chapters in a positive way.


A Hole In The Sidewalk… Now What?

Chapter I
I walk down the street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I fall in.
I am lost … I am helpless.
It isn’t my fault.
It takes me forever to find a way out.

Chapter II
I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I pretend I don’t see it.
I fall in again.
I can’t believe I am in the same place.
But it isn’t my fault.
It still takes a long time to get out.

Chapter III
I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I see it is there.
I still fall in … it’s a habit.
My eyes are open.
I know where I am.
It is my fault.
I get out immediately.

Chapter IV
I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I walk around it.

Chapter V
I walk down another street.


What chapter (and mindset) are you?


Photo Cred: Yuya Matsuo
Lisbon, Portugal –  the sixth international city I’ve had the pleasure of living in while on my Remote Year journey. 
How Living in Asia Changed My Life

How Living in Asia Changed My Life

What if you could travel the world, make a living and meet amazing people along the way? This was the questions I faced in Spring of 2016 that would forever change my life. I came across this very question online for a program called Remote Year. As a result, I am spending 2017 traveling across three continents (Asia, Europe & South America), exploring, learning, growing and loving life. This year is one of purpose, growth, and self-love for me. With that, I am sharing a brief introduction of the places I’ve lived (yes, lived) over the past few month and the impact they have made in my life.

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia


February – The capital of Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur is known as a “cultural melting pot”. It is indeed filled with tall skyscrapers, blended people and religions, and amazing cuisine. Malaysia was my introduction to my love for travel and is the perfect place for solo travel or large group travel.





Malaysia taught me these purpose-full and forever life lessons:

  1. Stepping out of your comfort zone is okay.
  2. Nothing worth having comes easy.
  3. Life is an adventure.


While visiting, be sure to experience:

  1. Petronas Tower
  2. Batu Caves
  3. Infinity Pools (check high-end hotels, you won’t regret it)
  4. Mind Valley
  5. Kuala Lumpur Bird Park
  6. Dinner In the Sky
  7. Chinatown
  8. Temples
  9. Street Food

From Malaysia, I also made a pit stop to Bali, Indonesia, and Singapore.


Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam


March | Vietnam was my favorite city in Asia that I had a chance to live in. The people, UBER motos and an endless supply of PHO and other cheap and delicious food are all part of this city’s charm. Compared to Malaysia, it was a shift from many different cultures and religions to a primarily Buddist religion.








Vietnam taught me these purpose-full and forever life lessons:

  1. Do it now. Sometimes later becomes never.
  2. If it doesn’t add value to your life, then it doesn’t belong in your life.
  3. Different is good. It adds a new perspective.

While visiting, be sure to experience:

  • Lunch Lady Restaurant (Featured on Anthony Bourdain’s No Reservations)
  • Uber Moto (I did this daily)
  • Pit Stop Community Café
  • Ha Long Bay, Vietnam
  • Vietnamese Drip Coffee
  • All White Party
  • “Karate” with Kids
  • Post-It Note Café

From Vietnam, I also made pit stops to Ha Long Bay, Vietnam, Vung Tao, Hanoi, Vietnam,



Phnom Penh, Cambodia

April | Cambodia, where the motorbikes are plenty and the heat is on another level. Cambodia was a tough month for me mentally. It was a dip in from the vibrant places of Malaysia and Vietnam, but I am glad that I could experience this country. A bustling and evolving city, Phnom Penh holds a lot of charm.










Cambodia taught me these purpose-full and forever life lessons:

  1. You don’t have to like everything. You just have to know how to deal with it and push forward.
  2. This too shall pass.
  3. See the good in everything and everyone.

While visiting, be sure to experience:

  • Tiny Tunes
  • Local and tradition Khmer Wedding
  • Siem Ream – Angkor What
  • Sunsets
  • Raji Bike Ride


Bangkok, Thailand


May | Thailand was the last leg of my Asia journey and did not disappoint. A place I’ve had on my bucket list, Bangkok is rich in culture, people, food, and shopping malls. A quick and cheap flight away, you can find the most impeccable beaches filled with white sand and realization.







Thailand taught me these purpose-full and forever life lessons:

  1. Travel is Empowering.
  2. You don’t have to do it all. Just do what you want.
  3. Life is better with good people.

While visiting, be sure to experience:

  • The Elephant Sanctuary Farm (Chaing Mai)
  • A Mui Thai Fight
  • The Grand Palace
  • Pad Thai
  • Som Tum – Papaya Salad
  • Chaing Mai hiking and overlook areas

From Thailand, I also made pit stops to Chaing Mai and Ko Lipe.


Southeast Asia was a great first leg of my remote year journey. Known for its great food, beautiful beaches, rich culture and beautiful people, traveling through Southeast Asia is an inexpensive travel destination. Joining in with the thousands of people who visit landmarks like Angkor Wat, Cambodia; the city of Bangkok, Thailand; and the scenic views of Ha Long Bay, Vietnam, I can say I have truly experience Asia.

Next up, Europe! Stay tuned…

In the meantime, follow my Remote Year journey on IG for daily inspiration and content related to purpose and travel.


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You’re Closer Than You Think to a Purpose-Full Life: Take It From A Mexican Fisherman

You’re Closer Than You Think to a Purpose-Full Life: Take It From A Mexican Fisherman

Photo Source: Alex Promios

In a world where dissatisfaction and always wanting more are life themes, it’s nice to be reminded that simplicity and loving where you are is critical to happiness and purpose. Let’s be honest, we are always looking to make more money, have other people’s lives whether it be in your life circle or in Hollywood and we often wonder what a higher position or new career would look like.

A Life Coach mentor and instructor of mine shared the following story about a Mexican Fisherman and a Harvard Businessman. This story is my inspiration to live purposefully by focusing on the now, living simplistically and on your terms.

It’s storytime. I’ve also included a few life lessons we can takeaway from the Mexican fisherman.

Mexican Fisherman Meets A Harvard Businessman

A vacationing American businessman standing on the pier of a quaint coastal fishing village in southern Mexico watched as a small boat with just one young Mexican fisherman pulled into the dock. Inside the small boat were several large yellowfin tuna. Enjoying the warmth of the early afternoon sun, the American complimented the Mexican on the quality of his fish.

“How long did it take you to catch them?” the American casually asked.

“Oh, a few hours,” the Mexican fisherman replied.

“Why don’t you stay out longer and catch more fish?” the American businessman then asked.

The Mexican warmly replied, “With this I have more than enough to meet my family’s needs.”

The businessman then became serious, “But what do you do with the rest of your time?”

Responding with a smile, the Mexican fisherman answered, “I sleep late, play with my children, watch ball games, and take siesta with my wife. Sometimes in the evenings I take a stroll into the village to see my friends, play the guitar, sing a few songs…”

The American businessman impatiently interrupted, “Look, I have an MBA from Harvard, and I can help you to be more profitable. You can start by fishing several hours longer every day. You can then sell the extra fish you catch. With the extra money, you can buy a bigger boat. With the additional income that larger boat will bring, before long you can buy a second boat, then a third one, and so on, until you have an entire fleet of fishing boats.”

Proud of his own sharp thinking, he excitedly elaborated a grand scheme which could bring even bigger profits, “Then, instead of selling your catch to a middleman you’ll be able to sell your fish directly to the processor or even open your own cannery. Eventually, you could control the product, processing, and distribution. You could leave this tiny coastal village and move to Mexico City, or possibly even Los Angeles or New York City, where you could even further expand your enterprise.”

Having never thought of such things, the Mexican fisherman asked, “But how long will all this take?”

After a rapid mental calculation, the Harvard MBA pronounced, “Probably about 15-20 years, maybe less if you work really hard.”

“And then what, señor?” asked the fisherman.

“Why that’s the best part!” answered the businessman with a laugh. “When the time is right, you would sell your company stock to the public and become very rich. You would make millions.”

“Millions? Really? What would I do with it all?” asked the young fisherman in disbelief.

The businessman boasted, “Then you could happily retire with all the money you’ve made. You could move to a quaint coastal fishing village where you could sleep late, play with your grandchildren, watch ball games, and take siesta with your wife. You could stroll to the village in the evenings where you could play the guitar and sing with your friends all you want.”


Seven life lessons from the Mexican Fisherman:

  1. Know what really matters in life
  2. You are closer than you think to the life you want
  3. Hard work will Pay Off
  4. Less Can Be More
  5. Trust Your Intuition (don’t always listen to others)
  6. Be Present
  7. Enjoy Life
How A Herd of Elephants Changed My Life

How A Herd of Elephants Changed My Life

You know all the things you’ve wanted to do? You should do them!

Who would’ve imagined that an extensive two days of research on Google, two-hour flight to Chaing Mai, Thailand, and a night of little sleep would allow me to experience one of the best days of my life. While living in Thailand, I knew that participating in a full-day at an elephant sanctuary was a must. This was more than crossing off an item on my bucket list, it was a chance for me to love, engage, and learn about a species that I hold dear to my heart.

It is no secret that I have a love for animals, all animals. Ever since I was a young girl, I have been surrounded by animals of all sorts, including elephants. Although I had not been in the physical presence of these incredible animals, my dear grandmother collected elephants and had over 50 ceramic elephants perfectly staged on the bottom shelf of her entertainment center. She loved their strength and gentleness. It was no question, that one day I would make her and my dream come true of visiting these lovely creatures a reality.

This past weekend, my hope of meeting and interacting with elephants came true. I visited the Patara Elephant Farm in Chaing Mai, Thailand and it was the most incredible experience of my life. Here’s a recap of my day as an Elephant Owner:

Get to Know the Elephants

We first arrived at the Elephant Clinic and Vet where we were acquainted with a few roaming elephants. As a group, we were able to break the ice and interact and watch the staff feed the elephants. We learned the basics of their mannerisms, food intake, growth characteristics, age, personalities and were on our way to split into small groups to get paired with our very own elephant for the day.

My Very Own Elephant

Pairing us up based on our interaction and personalities, we were assigned an elephant and an elephant caregiver. I was paired with a “naughty and spunky” female (go-figure), named Sompol. She’s ten years old and is full of life and zest. She loves to eat (a lot), drink, and carry on by herself. We bonded for nearly an hour through her eating, a massage and a mud-bath scrub. She got the works! She rewarded me with sloppy kisses. It was during this time that Sompol stole my heart.

The Papering Begins: Eating, Massages & Mud-Baths

Sompol was a fan of all of the pampering. We bonded pretty quickly with a basket of fruit in my hand. After learning about her eating habits, I was told about her skin care and was able to give her a massage with a plant bushel and then off to a mud-bath. She returned the favor and gave me one in return. This was probably my favorite part of the day because it was one-on-one time to spend, get to know, and bond with this incredible creature.

A Bonded Hike

With a full and clean elephant, I was given instructed training on they ways to get on the elephant neck safely. There were three different techniques to getting up on the elephant taught: climbing up while the elephant is sitting, hiking up their leg, and being lifted with their trunk. Sompol and I choose the trunk method where she lifted me up quickly and I turned around to face forward. I learned how to properly sit on the elephant (high near the neck), basic riding skills and the spoken commands for Sompol. Sompol took me up on a hill, passed a waterfall to a local lunch with the group. While the humans enjoyed lunch, the elephants enjoyed a pond of water and food.


The day ended with a goodbye, photos and another evening feed. Sompol brought me laughter, tears, and joy. She will forever be ingrained in my heart.

Here are the top 3 Things that I learned when searching for an Elephant Experience:

To ride or not to ride: There is much controversy on whether of not it is ethical to ride an elephant. The two extremes: wild elephants who have little to no human riders and Circus elephants who have lots of harmful and brutal human interaction. I researched extensively on this topic and found that it is indeed okay for an elephant to carry and transport a human, correctly. The key is to ride bareback and have NO wooden benches or seating strapped. Furthermore, the elephants must be attended by their caregivers in a compassionate and loving way. Of course, these elephants understand commands and this is okay. You train your bird, dog, and cat to listen to simple commands. My experience riding the elephants at Patara was phenomenal. Having and holding such a large animal was a bond that I would not have gotten had I just walked alongside Sompol.

How they are kept and treated:  Another major factor for picking THE place I would go to was how the elephants lived. At Patara, they are free roaming. The keepers and trainers of the elephants actually live on-site on the farm to track and care for the elephants 24/7. The elephants had access to shade, several ponds of water for drinking and bathing and of course food. All of the elephants were in great condition physically. The staff at Patara pay very close attention to the needs of their elephants; from weight to eating habits and even their bowel movements.

Flapping ears and wagging tails:  This is the key to a happy elephant. I first saw videos of the elephants at Patara with flapping ears and wagging tails. Comparing this to the research I found and the joy my dog gets when doing the exact same thing, I was interested in exploring Patara. Even though all of the elephants have different personalities and demeanor, the common flapping ears and wagging tails were a true declaration that they were happy.

I could not have asked for a better place to experience this once in a lifetime moment. With the conservation philosophy “Extinction is Forever”,  Patara Elephant Farm honored to encourage people to try, at least once in their lives, to experience this very special and sacred animal that should be treasured. I was immediately and forever touched by the elephant’s beautiful hearts.  Patara says we should all “experience the heart of giving, for the heart of living,” and that exactly what the elephants gave me that day.