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Attitude & Altitude

Can a conversation with a taxi driver alter your life’s journey?


Recently I was very privileged to have a conversation with what I can only describe as an amazing human “being” – a taxi driver.  He told me he was 80 and when asked why he wasn’t retired and taking life easy, he said his wife had died recently and he had nobody to talk to at home.  I though how sad and lonely that must be but he proceed to tell me that he took up taxi driving because he enjoyed chatting to customers.

He told me he had come through throat cancer, a heart attack, a stroke and recently had his knee replaced.  His friend introduced him to music and as a result he has been going to college, learning music for the last 3 years.  I told him he was amazing and asked what was his secret?  He replied “two things, attitude and altitude”.  I asked what he meant and was blown away when he said “It’s all down to how I look at things, my “attitude” and my love of sky diving or “altitude”.  His last sky dive was in February of this year!  He also uses Facebook!  Hands up anybody who would like to be this adventurous, tech savvy and active at 80 plus!

So can we broaden our horizons of understanding of life by studying our taxi driver?    How many widows or widowers are home alone and lonely?  How difficult must life be when a life-partner dies and leaves you all alone?  How many days might you go without talking to another adult?  What determination and resilience must it take to face up to this new stage of life?  If our mental and physical health allow, we can seek out social interaction and new challenges.  However, if our physical health restricts our movement, life’s horizons becomes limited.  Likewise if anxiety or depression are present, it might accelerate loneliness by resisting social interaction and increasing isolation.  Can we be proactive like this taxi driver?  How can we continue “being” when life as we knew it is no more?  Our taxi driver resisted isolation, he sought out social interaction – human company through his taxi business.  He engaged in new learning.  He maintained a positive attitude and took on new challenges in life and online.  And what can we do?  We can begin by questioning our attitude to life.  Are we on a roundabout, just going round and round?  In other words are we living without questioning our thoughts and behaviours?  Are we caught in ground-hog day, denying ourselves the opportunity to grow, to learn from our experiences.  We can take time out to consider ourselves, our family and our neighbours.  Let’s keep an eye out in our family and neighbourhood for somebody who might be a lonely and give a gentle check-in to ascertain how they’re coping.  Or how about visiting a local Nursing or Retirement Home. Maybe our visit could brighten somebody’s day and we might even be takenaback by how positive that makes us feel!

I wish you a day filled with happiness in your own company or in the company of others!



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Twelve Days of Quotes…Three…Affirmation!

Our loyal dog Juke (aka fab yacko), makes his belief in her, explicit to our daughter Emma!

Affirmation awakens the soul, frees the spirit and tells the body… anything is possible!”

Marie Clancy.

Don’t assume that people know their value. Name the strengths you see in them…help them see their strenghts too!

For more reading…here’s a good starting point

Can you add any affirmation that has worked for you? What happened as a result?

Much love,



A Broken Japanese Bowl……….

Take a minute to read this post… learn to share your imperfection instead of trying to hide them…then just try to remember next time you struggle to understand somebody… they just haven’t read this post or learned to value their imperfections! Wouldn’t communication be so much easier! Thanks Kamal at Boundless Blessings.

Boundless Blessings by Kamal


I came across this beautiful song on ‘A Broken Japanese Bowl’. In Japanese it is known as Kintsukoroi which means ‘to repair with gold’, the art of repairing pottery with ‘gold or silver lacquer’ and understanding that the piece is more beautiful and of utmost value for having been broken and how it must be saved: 

I’m like one of those Japanese bowls

That were made long ago

I have some cracks in me

They have been filled with gold


That’s what they used back then

When they had a bowl to mend

It did not hide the cracks

It made them shine instead


So now every old scar shows

From every time that I break

And anyone’s eyes can see

I’m not what I used to be


But in a collector’s mind

All of these jagged lines

Make me more beautiful

And worth…

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Twelve Days of Quotes…Two…Simple!


“It is always the simple that produces the marvellous” (Amelia Barr)

Keep it simple as you rapidly approach Christmas, pause to see the beauty in simple things, appreciate the ordinary!

Much love,


Twelve days of Quotes…One…Smiling!

“Keep smiling, because life is a beautiful thing and there’s so much to smile about” (Marilyn Monroe)

Only 12 days to Christmas, can we create a dozen waves of blogging positivity?

Can we start with a smile? Share a smile…pass it on!

23e9df26e678780a0913702525e54258--happy-thoughts-quotes-positive-thoughts(Spike Milligan)

Much love,


Daily Prompt: I have a simple Theory!

via Daily Prompt: Theory  

I have a simple theory… that all the theory in the world is no good to you unless you back it up with real life everyday living! Otherwise it remains an upside-down theory.  It has to be turned on it’s head and put into practice!  Have fun, live, alter existing theories or better still create your own theory!


Christmas gift idea…

Originally posted on Read Write Live: Title: Twelve Tales of Christmas Author: Cathleen Townsend Genre: Short stories, Fiction Synopsis Christmas isn’t always Jingle Bells and “Ho, ho, ho.” In these Twelve Tales of Christmas, even Santa has to deal with unexpected German shepherds and reindeer who suddenly want to learn the tango. A dryad works…

via Twelve Tales of Christmas by Cathleen Townsend: Book Review — Cathleen Townsend

This review makes me want to read this book and maybe it could make an ideal Christmas present for someone special.  We are a blogging “Community” after all, let’s support each other’s efforts!

How Much Does It Really Cost To Study Abroad? — When Women Inspire

If you’re toying with the idea of moving overseas, one thing you may be focusing on is finances. How much do tuition fees cost, and how much can you expect to spend on rent and bills?

via How Much Does It Really Cost To Study Abroad? — When Women Inspire

Christy at When Women Inspire shares some great information to get you started on your research.  (I highly recommend her blog!)

Being Irish I’m just left wondering how we still have a functioning education system with such exorbitant fees and expenses!

I’d best go…have to do some research myself or I wonder, would anyone outside of Ireland like to adopt two young adults facing college?? Lol!!

Keep living and embracing life-long learning!

“I” before “You”

“I” before “You” Credit for this amazing photo has to go to the talented Katie O’R and the subject… my wonderful son John!

This post invites you to consider the power of our words. Words can build us up or without doubt, knock us down!

At any time of the year, but particularly Christmas, emotions can run high! If you are feeling upset, hurt and angry and you feel like flinging angry words of blame at somebody, such as…

1. You are selfish,
2. You are lazy, or
3. You have no relationship with me,

Try to pause and breathe before using these dangerous “You” statements…

You” statements shift the entire blame onto the other person, refusing to take any responsibility ourselves and these “You” statements have the power to destroy any hopes of effective communication and damage a person’s confidence and self-esteem.

However, if we can replace “You” statements with “I” statements…We have a better chance of naming the real issue, we can help the other person understand our emotions or how we feel and we can engage in effective, problem solving communication!

Here could be some alternatives to the above troublesome “You” statements…

1. “I” feel disrespected when you don’t contribute
2. “I” feel used when I’m left to do all the jobs
3. “I” feel I’m the one putting all the work into our relationship.

These examples are just some food for thought. They may help change our perspective and open us up to understanding!

Maybe you’ve experienced a hurtful “You” statement? Well, I invite you to contribute a “You” statement with an alternative, more effective “I” statement?

Let’s influence effective communication…let’s start an “I” before “You” collection!

Much love,

Marie xx


Fact or fashion? It’s time to choose

A thought provoking post that deserves to be read…what’s your fashion?


When I get dressed for work I have a certain uniform. Shirt, pants, cardigan, ballerina slippers. Simple and effective, but obviously not a lot of thought put into my look. My weekend and evening wear consists of some kind of throwback to the 90s. Jeans. T-shirt. Cons. Flannel.

I don’t know how I got stuck in that look, but I did, and it’s how I feel most like myself. It hearkens back to my college days, Pearl Jam and Smashing Pumpkin concerts, reading Generation X, Women’s and African American literature. I was deepening my understanding of those who had an impact on our world, but with such little recognition. I was becoming aware that out of desperation and pain come beauty and growth.

Maybe I got stuck in the pain, at least when it comes to fashion.

Everyone picks their own style, it is the outward example of our inward lives…

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