Sharing Snippet: Behind The Kitchen Doors ~ Resort Life

My next memoir, Behind the Kitchen Doors ~ Resort Life, continues with my journey working for luxury hotels in the heart of the Canadian Rockies. I focus on how it is to work in a resort-like hotel during the winters, where the hours are less and I picked up shifts where I could, and a second job at a daycare where I ended up with chickenpox at the age of twenty-three. There was never a dull moment. Every experience was one step forward of the path of where I was going.

Christmas at the Lake

Christmas at the Lake was magical. It was a snow globe of a perfect winter wonderland. Snow-covered mountains, the glistening snow on top of the frozen lake, a section plowed off for skaters, and a cross-country ski trail to the end of the Lake. It also seemed that every tree outside around the property was wrapped in white Christmas lights. It was stunning.

Inside the hotel, it looked like Santa’s workshop from all the Christmas movies you can think of. Most recently I think of the Christmas Chronicles with Kirk Russel and Goldie Hawn meets White Christmas with Bing Crosby and Rosemary Clooney.

The Christmas trees in the lobby were gargantuan species of bright and dazzling yuletide ordainments. Each tree had an empty box decorated in shining holiday paper with oversized bows placed ever so perfectly around the base of the tree. There were Christmas trees everywhere you looked in the lobby, each dining room, and hallways throughout the hotel. It would be easy to play hide-and-go-seek and get lost in the trees.

***

When I was working on the holiday buffet, I watched people pile roasted turkey and slabs of prime rib on their plates, I would break up the monotonous of the buffet service by staring outside the floor-to-ceiling bay windows facing the glacier-fed Lake. The Christmas trees outside were beautifully decorated and with the falling snow on the branches of the trees, the magic of the holidays filled my heart.

            Sis: Excuse me do you have any horseradish?

            Marion Ann: What?

            Sis: That woman is pointing at an empty bowl.

            Marion Ann: Opps!

            Sis: Daydreamer.       

            Marion Ann: Yes. Yes, I am.

***

I didn’t talk to Michael a lot during the holidays. He was busy with school and I told him how busy the hotel was. I shared stories about the elaborated buffets the companies chose for their employees. I told him about the overpriced wine I pushed onto my tables to make extra money.

He would imply it was a good way to save money for when I was ready to move back to Nova Scotia. I would agree to avoid the conversation.

Marion Ann: I wasn’t ready to leave.

Sis: Either was I.

            Christmas Time for Employees

My first Christmas away from home was painless. I was working a lot to distract myself from the traditional events that I was missing in Nova Scotia.

At the Lake, on Christmas day I only had to work a small Christmas morning champagne breakfast for a family that booked a private room to celebrate together. It was the easiest hundred dollars I made, that as on top of the gratuity built into the private room and catering fee. The family felt bad for me that I had to work on Christmas day.

            Sis: Then hand over another hundred.

            Marion Ann: Exactly.

After I cleaned up my function, I made my way to my cousin, Debbie’s, house in Canmore for Christmas dinner. It was nice to spend time with family.

I didn’t mind working Christmas, it meant double time pay, and extra sympathy tips when I shared, I was away from family.

The one event I was looking forward to was the employee Christmas party. It was one of the elaborated buffets and the managers served the employees. The poured the first glasses of wine but then left the bottles on the tables for free pour service. It was a recipe for disaster.

The management was in charge of bussing tables and wine service. Dinner was an elaborate buffet by a culinary team from another sister property. Usually, Kananaskis sent a team to work the event, and then we would go there to help them with their Christmas party. Who wouldn’t want to work at another property, get paid to hang out and drink, because that’s what happened. The cooks prepared dinner, the servers and dishwashers did their jobs and then after dinner, they were offered to party with us, we all knew each other from staying at each other’s property with the staff discount, or transferring from one property to another, the mountain properties were one big happy family.

***

My debut memoir, Behind The Kitchen Doors ~ The Summers, shares my first three summers working for the Chateau Lake Louise, a beautiful hotel on top of a mountain. It may be far away from your home but you can’t hide from what you left behind. Click Here fore more details ~ Thank you.

Until Next Time, Keep on Typing…

The Hotel Life has Chosen Me – Boys versus Writing

This year I started to work with a bullet journal and at first, I was not keen on changing my routine with a standard daily journal that anyone could pick up from Micheal’s. As a creative being, the bullet journal is a great way to express yourself even more. At the moment my journal looks like my past daily journals, but there are differences. I experiment with space and colors and stickers; I love stickers! In my February goal list, I jotted down the blog posts I wanted to focus on for the hotel life and to continue my progress with my second memoir about my experience in the hotel world. The next post is going to be about my choices in men that have distracted me from my writing life. I am finding this hard to share for some reason. The ego is having a hard time with this topic because it knows that I knew I was procrastinating from my true passion to be with a guy. How many of us can relate to this? I’ll raise my hand all day long to this ego related distraction.

After my first summer at the Lake I needed to focus on writing. I was attending my university classes and my focus was getting back to the Lake so I could sit by the glacier-fed lake and write. I would work my shifts and then write. That was my full intention. Intentions are good. Right?

 

I am wondering how to start this chapter. Should I open the scene with the time where I found my boyfriend with another girl? Or the time when the same boyfriend was cheating on me and the girl he was sleeping with confronted me at the end of the summer employee party? Or how about the time I was convinced the same boyfriend moving to Atlanta for a career move would fight for me to work at the same hotel? Or maybe the time I lent a car to Jacob (remember Jacob at the end of my debut memoir, Behind the Kitchen Doors ~ The Summers?) so he could pick me up at the airport when I fly back from Nova Scotia. I attended the wedding of the friends who lent me their car. They were also working at the Lake to save money for their wedding and kick start payments on a mortgage.  My friends asked me not to let anyone else drive the car, but I betrayed their trust. When I told Jacob that he could only use the car to pick me up from the airport, I trusted him.

Sis: You know where this is going.

Remember Sis? She is my alter-ego/sassy pseudo guardian angel who says what I can not at times.

When I returned from their wedding, I heard rumors that Jacob was seen driving the car in Banff, but to see another girl!

Sis: I told you…

Marion Ann: Don’t even.

Jacob’s attention blinded me. I didn’t want to know he was like the last two guys I dated at the Lake. He was three years younger than I was. My last two boyfriends were ten years older than I. I thought Jacob would be different. I was not thinking clearly. If only I had been writing I would have been able to work out my thoughts on the page.

***

I will stop here. You can see where I am going with this chapter. I was distracted by the men I was choosing to be with rather than spending time with the writing. I do want to open the chapter with a good scene. What would catch your attention?

Excuse me, my name is “X” and I have been f*#%ing your boyfriend for the summer. He dumped me. I thought you should know.

This situation I buried deep down as far as I could push it without thinking about it. However, when I look back I am aware that this situation was a consequence of my own choices. I also will say that everything happens for a reason and I wouldn’t be where I am today if I didn’t survive this blip. Not saying that I willed this heartache, but somewhere my karma was coming back around for cheating on the same boyfriend after he cheated on me.

Sis: It was messy.

Marion Ann: Very.

Thank you for being here with me. I look forward to your help with the opening scene of this chapter.

Until Next Time, Keep on Typing…

 

 

 

 

To read the opening scene of Behind The Kitchen Doors ~ The Summers, visit Here.

 

 

Thank you for being here with me!

 

The Hotel Life ~ I am not Wishy-Washy

I am continuing to trick my brain to work on my next memoir. I find it easier to write and let the words flow here. Thank you for being here with me.

Hotel Life has Chosen Me

My hotel life was not all rainbows and roses. It was far from it.

Sis: You can say that again.

Does everyone remember Sis?

Sis: I’m the sassy ego.

Marion Ann: Something like that.

Sis is my sassy alter ego. She says what I can’t or won’t say. I’m afraid of someone may not like me.

Sis: As if you care.

Marion Ann: That’s true. Other people’s option about me is none of my business.

Sis: Yup!

I had to learn that what other people thought of me what not my business. Maybe a few years ago I started to not care what people thought of me because I was wasting a lot of time people-pleasing. It’s exhausting trying to appease other people’s bullpucky (I’m trying not the swear as much, but sometimes you just have to say what needs to be said). I’ve been in the hospitality business for over 25 years and I’ve seen and listened to many people-pleasing scenarios. For example, a wife and husband visiting Lake Louise because he likes to ski, and she is resentful because she came on the trip to please her husband. But when they sat down in my section one morning, I could tell she was mad at herself for not using her voice about the ski trip she was not enjoying. I only know this was the situation because she told me when her husband went to the buffet before their six-hour day at the ski hill. I’m paraphrasing here, but this is what the wife implied and when I hear people complain I tune out and they sound like the school teacher from Charlie Brown. “wah-wah”

 

“I wanted to go to Cuba and lay on the beach and do nothing. Now I’m here, it’s cold and I’m skinning, I’m not on a beach doing nothing. I just wanted to make him happy.”

Sis: Yikes!

I nodded and said I implied I was sorry? She said thanks, but next year they are going to Cuba and she’ll put her foot down when they make their year vacation plans.

Sis: Okay.

Marion Ann: People like to complain to me.

Sis: Could make a career out of that.

Marion Ann: Great (As I roll my eyes)

After years of listening to people complain about their life choices, I can’t believe how long it took me to realize that I was doing the same thing and from such an early age.

When I was younger, I wanted to make sure people liked me. What did that look like? Me running around doing things that I thought people wanted. Like making sure I had the right brand of jeans or latest New Kids on the Block album (that came to mind as I was listening to the 80’s channel and Joey-Joe was singing “please don’t go girl…

If I kept up with the trends, then people would like me who never even knew I existed. I was a grain of salt compared to the lavish lifestyle they were trying to live. They had their own issues to deal with. I didn’t understand that being myself should be enough.

Sis: I thought we were talking about hotel life.

Marion Ann: I’m getting there.

One of my food and beverage supervisors called me wishy-washy, and that’s why I wouldn’t be promoted as a trainer for the banquet department. He thought I couldn’t make a decision. I wasn’t sure how he came to this conclusion. Maybe, and I don’t want to assume, but here I go… maybe it was because I didn’t play into his Australian charm that other women seemed to swoon over. I didn’t accept any of his drinks at the bar and I may have given him the stink eye once or twice when we would watch him try to pick up other women in the staff pub.

Sis: It was fun to watch him get turned down.

My ego ran ramped with how I was a good server. I ran my sections smoothly. I never showed up late. I was ten to fifteen minutes early for my shifts to make sure I prepared my section for a good service. I was engaging with my guests and this supervisor thought I was wishy-washy!

Sis: He was an as….

Marion Ann: Let’s keep it clean for once.

Sis: Well he was.

Marion Ann: I showed him.

Sis: Sure did.

When this supervisor labelled me as wishy-washy, I heard I wasn’t good enough and for a moment I believed them.

Sis: Then I said something.

Marion Ann: Thank you.

I told myself I would prove to this supervisor I was as good as the rest of the training team being put together. I didn’t know that my peers were rooting for me and I am very grateful for them stepping up for me. I became a better server and a trainer because of my colleagues. We supported one another. We covered up for one another. We were a family and my longing to have brothers and sisters had come true. The best thing about this family, they didn’t care what I did as long as I had their backs when needed. I didn’t need to have a pair of the latest Esprit jeans to prove that I was worthy to be on their team.

Until Next Time, Keep on Typing…

 

 

 

 

 

If you liked, Kitchen Confidential and the Grand Budapest Hotel, you will enjoy this eye-opening life experience of one employee’s journey of working for a luxury hotel in the heart of the Canadian Rockies. Thank you for joining me on this journey.

Amazon

The Hotel Life Chose Me

I am continuing to trick my brain to work on my next memoir. I am finding it easier to write and let the words flow here. Some of this won’t be in the book, but there are some ideas here that have helped me with writing the next memoir. Thank you for being here with me.

The Hotel Life Chose Me

The hotel life has chosen me. I wasn’t surprised when I continued my journey in the hospitality field after my first summer at the luxury hotel, Chateau Lake Louise, in Alberta. A series of events brought me to a place where I asked for help and within a few days, I happily accepted help from my cousin to help me get a job at the Lake (I call the Chateau Lake Louise, the Lake in my debut memoir, Behind the Kitchen Doors ~ The Summers). I made a choice to leave Halifax, Nova Scotia, for five months. I was hired to work until the end of August. My second year of university was waiting for me, and I wasn’t sure if I was ready to go back home. My new home at the Lake was more interesting. I didn’t have the typical troubles with my mother. Like many teenage daughter and mother relationships, we didn’t see eye-to-eye. I was an only child who didn’t agree with anything my mother said.

Sis: Or anyone else.

Marion Ann: That’s true.

This is Sis, my sassy pseudo alter ego/guardian angel.

Sis: Hey there.

Sis lives within me. We are one. She says what I want to say, but don’t dare to. I didn’t want to be judged. Sis doesn’t care what people think of her.

Sis: That’s the truth. We don’t have time to waste on what other people think.

Sis has been here all along. She has seen everything. She knows everything. I can’t hide from her. Therefore, I can’t hide from myself.

Sis: Sure can’t.

When I returned to the Lake for the third summer, I knew that I wouldn’t be rushing back to Nova Scotia. This doesn’t seem like a big deal, but I told my boyfriend at the time that I would be back. I wanted to be with him, but when he mentioned he wanted to move in together after he finished Nursing School and start a family, well I was out the door even before he could finish his sentence.

Sis: Sure were.

Marion Ann: I couldn’t run fast enough.

What I wanted to do was save up enough money to return to Halifax within a year, move into a heritage home and write books. I would get a serving position at one of the popular restaurants downtown to pay the rent and the basics but I had a plan that my writing would one day be my full-time profession. Except I had this little nagging voice that came from not only my family but friends and other creative people.

You need a job that will pay the bills. Writing won’t get you very far.

I’m paraphrasing, but this was the underlying concept. They didn’t know that creativity would take care of me. They didn’t see that I could write a blockbuster movie and live off the money that someone would pay me for my writing. It’s not a difficult concept, but it looks scary because it’s not the cookie-cutter way of life that my family and society were used to. They were in the box of:

Get up and go to work come home to have dinner, watch TV go to bed and do it all over again the next day. (This is what I remember being portrayed as in TV and Movies in the ’80s and ’90s)

Sis: Hell No!

Marion Ann: I did not sign up for this.

Sis: Hell No!

Writing was my way of leaving this Monday-Friday. 9 to 5 mentality. When I was writing, I was in my own world where I could do anything I wanted and be happy with my choices. With this intention, the universe provided me with exactly what I needed to break the cycle of people wondering what I would do with my life after university. Would I get a steady job in a government office or become a secretary where I wouldn’t be without work because it seemed to be that secretaries were in demand.

Sis: Rolling my eyes.

Marion Ann: Shaking my head and rolling my eyes.

Sorry, I got off track there. Thank you for reading through the rant.

I was sharing how I was a terrible girlfriend for telling my boyfriend at the time that I would be back in the Fall and then we would begin our lives. He said I could write anywhere, and that was true. So I wrote in Alberta. I would stay at the Lake, work my shifts, and write every free moment. That was my intention. When I returned to the Lake of May 96’ I was writing every day. I played the shy card. The label of ‘shy little girl’ was placed on me at such an early age that sometimes I still believe it. Instead of going out with my roommates, I would stay in my room and write. My roommates went to the staff pub and had fun getting to know one another. I had done the staff pub thing for the first two summers. I drank too much, and I knew how hard it was to drink until 2 am and try to get to work for 5:30 am to set up the breakfast buffet. I knew I needed to be disciplined with my writing and if that meant staying in and not being social then so be it.

Sis: But we lived on top of a mountain.

Marion Ann: So much to explore.

Sis: No one was around to judge.

Marion Ann: One night off from writing won’t hurt.

Sis: Shouldn’t.

My writing suffered from my choices when I was at the Lake, but if I hadn’t had those experiences, I wouldn’t have the stories to share. When I heard, write what you know, that was what was happening. I was learning about hotel life. I was learning who I was, and that is what I would write about. Coming of age mixed with hospitality. I grew in my hotel career and as a person. I am still learning. I am still growing.

Thank you for being here with me. I’m working through this next memoir here and it feels good.

Until Next Time, Keep on Typing…

 

 

 

 

 

To learn more about my debut memoir, Behind the Kitchen Doors ~ The Summers, please click Here.

NaNoWriMo2019 Update

The month of November hundreds of writers embarks on the month-long writing challenge where we write a novel in the month of November. I should also mention the goal is to write 50,000 words. This little challenge is called NaNoWriMo. This is my fifth year participating and each year I have learned more about myself and my writing routines.

My NaNo project this year is to finish my second memoir about working for the luxury hotel, Chateau Lake Louise during the winter months in the later 1990’s. My debut memoir was about my time at the hotel during the summer months where I served hundreds of people over the summer months where guests would come from all over the world to witness the magical lake of Lake Louise and do the tour of the Canadian Rockies.

 

During the winter months, it was all about skiing and taking advantage of the wintertime activities. For me and the other employees of the food & beverage world, we also took advantage of the amazing skiing offered at Lake Louise, Banff and Kananaskis. We also indulged a little more in the party lifestyle than I should have. I was faced with life lessons and moral decisions each season I lived on top of the mountain. I am sharing more intimate details of the darkness that I faced with my mental wellbeing. The games people play to get ahead in their careers. The love triangles that seemed to be a sport. We may have looked professional while serving people who were spending hundreds of dollars to stay at the hotel, but when we went Behind The Kitchen Doors, the true stories of our lives were exposed.

Thank you for being here with me. Now back to the writing.

Until Next Time, Keep on Typing…

 

 

 

 

 

If you liked, Kitchen Confidential and the Grand Budapest Hotel, you will enjoy this eye-opening life experience of one employee’s journey of working for a luxury hotel in the heart of the Canadian Rockies.

Behind The Kitchen Doors ~ The Summers

 

What is Hospitality? #Mondayblogs

What is hospitality?

The friendly and generous reception and entertainment of guests, visitors, or strangers.

I like to think of hospitality as welcoming people into my home. I want to make sure they are comfortable and enjoying themselves to the fullest.

How does one get into the hospitality business? How did I end up here? A few questions I get asked often when I’m talking with guests when they ask me if I’m from Victoria and I share that I am not. The conversation can go something like this:

Guest: Are you from Victoria?
Me: No, I’m from Nova Scotia.
Guest: One coast to another.
Me: Something like that.
Guest: How did you end up on the island?

Now here is when I may say,
Me: Oh it’s a long story.

If it’s a busy day I don’t have time to expose my story. I know I’m in the business of hospitality but I’m sure guests want to get to their room and relax, they don’t want to hear my story at that moment. But sometimes I have time to tell part of my story and will say.

Me: For Love. (That’s when I get an intriguing look from guests and they want to hear more.)

I start to share my hotel life history. How I started in Lake Louise, then moved to Jasper then Calgary, back to Jasper and then Edmonton. A love affair with the Canadian Rockies and hotel life for over ten years. Then I share how we ended up on Vancouver Island. Our original plan was to move to Victoria, but we were offered jobs Tofino, BC. One of the most beautiful places to live and work besides the resorts in the Canadian Rockies. Then after 7 years, we made our way to the capital city.

 

My hotel life is no accident. I’m here to be of service. My creative life is also not by chance. My creative life and hotel life are one. Every experience that has been present has been a blessing. My hotel life continues to provide me with everything that is needed to excel this creative life. Thank you, creativity.

My debut memoir, Behind The Kitchen Doors ~ The Summers is about my first few summers working at a luxury hotel in the heart of the Canadian Rockies.

If you liked, Kitchen Confidential and the Grand Budapest Hotel, you will enjoy this eye-opening life experience of one employee’s journey of working for a luxury hotel in the heart of the Canadian Rockies.

Ebook and Print book available on AMAZON. US | CA | AU

Until Next Time, Keep on Typing…

Settings for My Current Novel

I am participating in a January Instagram photo challenge and this week has been fun with finding pictures that match the daily theme. Research can spark my memory which is helpful as I work on my second memoir about working in a luxury hotel in the heart of the Canadian Rockies.

What is the setting of my current novel? 

This is the Victoria Dining Room at the Chateau Lake Louise. It was where my hotel life pretty much started. When I first set foot in the dining room, the sea of tables overwhelmed me. I was accustomed to the fast-paced environment of working at McDonald’s, which prepared me for the intense environment of the grand dining that could serve up to five hundred people at a time. But the golden arches didn’t prepare me for the five-star level of service I was expected to provide every time I stepped into the 6000 square foot dining room.

What I learned

I learned quickly to keep my permanent smile on and agreed the guest was always right (even when they weren’t). The guests of the Lake were paying hundreds of dollars to stay at the luxury hotel and they paid for the service.                                       I mastered the act of grinning and bearing a lot of the guests. Snapping fingers, ‘hey you’s’ and all around arrogance from the guests who didn’t care about the employees. They cared about being in one of the most beautiful places in the North American and telling their friends all about the time they vacationed at the Banff National Park. But, there were a lot more grateful guests than not. I witness a lot of memorable times as well, wedding proposals, anniversaries and celebrations in the dining room. I am very fortunate to have had these experiences and adventures. I learned how to be a better server, host, trainer, and leader from my time in the Canadian Rockies. I got my training wheels at the Lake and was prepared for the next lessons in life. Love. That’s a whole other story.

I am currently working on my second memoir about working at the Lake during the Winters. Going from serving hundreds of people a day on any given summer day, to working three nights a week for fifteen hours for a banquet was a shift I couldn’t get used to. But once I started to cross-country skiing I didn’t mind working less and taking advantage of the outdoor adventures the Lake offered. What fun!

Until Next Time, Keep on Typing…

How did I stumble upon my hotel life? Find out Here

Help! I’m Having Title Troubles

I’ve been writing my second memoir about working for a luxury hotel in the heart of the Canadian Rockies. I self-published my debut memoir, Behind The Kitchen Doors ~ The Summers, in September. I planned on my second memoir to be published in February of 2019. That date has been pushed a little later due to ego/writer’s block. I don’t have writer’s block per se, I’m having a little trouble organizing the material in a better way. One of the negative reviews nags at me, ‘could have used some editing’ which I did have, but I question myself and my choices of what I shared in the book. Could I have shared more? How do I make it better? How will I make the next book better? That’s key, I haven’t stopped writing, I’m ready to dive deeper. I’m ready to make my writing better.

Secondly, I am struggling with is the title of my second memoir. Can I ask for your help? Thoughts, suggestions are welcomed.

My intentions are to write a trilogy about my hotel life. The first two memoirs are about working for a luxury hotel in the heart of the Canadian Rockies. The third memoir is about working for a city hotel and then breaking away from the luxury chain hotel life into independent hotels while trying to pay attention more to my writing life.

The first memoir was always going to be Behind the Kitchen Doors. Then I added The Summers because the second one was going to be ‘Behind the Kitchen Doors ~ The Winters.’ The thought was to share stories about working in a mountain resort in the winter. The long winters were hard. Many of us were not working a lot because not many people were traveling. Yet, it was busy enough because senior servers took weeks off to travel, leaving me and other servers to work groups like Billy Graham, Mary Kay, Olympic ski teams, and what seemed like endless Christmas parties starting early November until the first week of the New Year. The winters were long atop a mountain and when I worked a ten-hour day serving a group breakfast, lunch, and dinner, the last thing I wanted to do was write. So I hit the bar and drank, which became a nightly ritual for not only myself but many servers. Some of us fell into the trap of alcohol and drugs, some of not so much. I tried to be neutral, but I also didn’t want to miss out on any parties. It was a vicious cycle. I may be getting ahead of myself now.

The title I originally had for the second memoir was:                                                           Behind the Kitchen Doors ~ The Winters, It’s simple and tells the story. Or does it?

The other titles I have been thinking about:                                                                           If You Can’t Stand the Heat                                                                                                       Get out of the Kitchen                                                                                                                 How may I help you?

_____________________________________________

What do you think? What title would grab you? What speaks to you? What makes you want to read the story of a young woman trying to survive in a resort town?

Thank you for your help. Until Next Time, Keep on Typing…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For a sneak peek of my debut memoir, Behind The Kitchen Doors ~ The Summers, head Here ~ Thank you.

The First Week of 2019 ~ How’s it Going?

Happy New Year! How is your first week of 2019? Did you make any goals, set any intentions for this great new year filled with endless possibilities? I did. The first one was to clean out my clothes closet. I know it sounds small, but I’ve been thinking about this for months now. Every time I opened my closet doors I would think, why haven’t I worn that white shirt? I can’t even tell you how many times I’ve said this in six months. So with that thought, I wrote down in my day planner and my wall calendar on January 1, 2019 ‘ if I haven’t worn it in six months it has to go to grow.’ 

January 1st is also my birthday. This closet purge was one of my presents to myself. I told my husband what I was doing and he said, ‘can I hold the bag for you?’ he is more of a minimalist when it comes to clothing. I have a larger wardrobe due to my job and I also love my oversized sweaters and jeans. I have two black pencil skirts, eight tops, and five dresses to swap around during the week. I won’t count how many sweaters I have. I wear them all the time though, so I’m making good use of them. (That’s my rationality about my sweaters and I’m sticking to it.)                          I walked into my bedroom and knew exactly where I would start (with the white shirt I haven’t worn in almost a year), then within twenty minutes, I was done.     My husband: that was fast.                                                                                                 Me: like a band-aid, rip it off and move on.

One of my intentions is much like the band-aid analogy. Do it quickly and move on. No regrets. I started 2018 much like this when I sent the first email to my editor, there was no turning back. I was ready to share my work and now that I have self-published my first memoir, I don’t know why it took me so long. I was able to create more space for my writing. I realized I was more than my full-time job at the hotel life. I knew I had my writing life, but I wasn’t giving it the attention it fully deserved until I made that one decision. I feel the same way about my closet. Now that I have cleaned it out, I have made room for other things. I have more storage to declutter other areas of the house. What a feeling!

 

I started to sit with my next memoir. I wrote it during NaNoWriMo and it is in that rough first draft stage. My goal is to polish it for my editor by the end of January/early February and self publish by end of February/early March. Then I can move on to a new project that has been showing up from time to time in the past two years. My intentions for 2019 is to give the attention my creative life deserves. How will I do this? By working every day on the writing. By taking one action towards my writing business each day. The actions don’t have to be grandiose, but they need to be attainable and realistic. Polishing my draft is realistic and doable. Contacting my cover designer and editor. Setting a date for publication. All attainable and realistic. I am the only one who is going to write the book so I better get to it.

Until Next Time, Keep on Typing…

 

 

 

 

 

Find out more about my debut memoir, BEHIND THE KITCHEN DOORS ~ The Summers, HERE

My Lesson During the Countdown to the Holidays

Eight days to Christmas – where has the time gone? It feels like I went to sleep on November 30th and now it’s December 17th. The time gap is real and now the crunch is on for getting prepared for Mr. Claus to visit us.

During November while participating in NaNoWriMo I pretty much let all my domestic obligations go by the wayside. Thank goodness for my husband who did the laundry and made the majority of our meals. I did find time to vacuum and clean the bathroom only to get a mini-break from the laptop screen.

The beginning of December was busy for me at my full-time job at the hotel life. I am not one to give excuses for why I don’t write, because I am the only who can make a change in my habits to get my but in the chair and get the words on the page. However, I was not in control of a slight change in my work schedule to accommodate a third parties schedule. It is what it is and I usually am able to go with the flow and be in the moment. But…

…when my writing schedule is interrupted I feel it. I am aware of my crankiness and lack of patience with people. I have been learning a bit more about myself in the past sixteen days and I don’t like what I see. This calls for some serious writing sessions and meditation. I need to be grounded and realize that I am not in control of certain situations and accept that fact. I can’t always be in control of a schedule and be okay with that. Guess what? The ego does not like this at all and it fights tooth and nail to have control. The ego wants to know what is going on all the time, to be right. Yikes! The ego can be a tricky little villain at times. I am aware of my ego trying to be in control. I feel the struggle and it’s real. I’m onto you, ego, and I am here to kick you to the curb and accept in this moment I am here typing and sharing my thoughts. This is how I will discipline myself, by writing.

My lesson is to keep writing and don’t let my schedule ever to the wayside. I remember when I first started to work for the luxury hotel and resort chain in Lake Louise. I was caught up in the excitement of exploring a new place in such a beautiful part of the Canadian Rockies. I forgot who I was and didn’t write. I had some amazing experiences during those times and I am very fortunate to have written my debut memoir, Behind The Kitchen Doors ~ The Summers, from those experiences. I am learning from my past and present. Keep writing.

Until Next Time, Keep on Typing…

 

 

 

 

 

 


BEHIND THE KITCHEN DOORS ~ THE SUMMERS

Have you ever wondered what it was like to work for a luxury hotel in the heart of the Canadian Rockies? My memoir, Behind the Kitchen Doors, is about my journey and start of my hospitality career and I didn’t even know I would stay the entire summer that first year.

Ebook and Print book available on AMAZON. US | CA | AU