NYC Lunch

Thank You, 2014!

1. What did you do in 2014 that you’d never done before?

I visited my dream city, NYC, and even got to go twice.  My first trip was for work. Our organization hosted a campus ministry conference through our New York church. We stayed at the Hilton near Times Square which was a few blocks from the conference venue. I walked to Central Park, met a friend at The Shops at Columbus Circle and ate dessert at Bouchon, explored Times Square at midnight, and met another friend for a long walk around the city that ended with Chinese food at a hole in the wall off Broadway.

My second visit was for pleasure. I stayed at an apartment in Ridgewood. I fell in love with the neighborhood and its bodegas and multiple cultures. If I were to live in New York, Ridgewood is definitely where I would want to be.

I drove for Uber! I’ve never been paid to drive people before! Was definitely an adventure and I’m proud to say I left as a highly-rated driver. :-)

2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?

Instead of resolutions, I made a dream board on an app called Curator. I filled it with images of places I wanted to go to and things I wanted to achieve. I listened to many podcasts on leadership and had an epiphany: I was doing it wrong. Creating my board was only the first step. The next step/s should have been to actually look at the board regularly and be inspired.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?

Not this year, but my daughter got pregnant with her first child, a son we’re all excited to meet in March.

4. Did anyone close to you die?

I wouldn’t say close but two of my biological brothers in the Philippines passed away. I hadn’t seen either of them in a decade. They both had heart attacks and left behind wives and kids. Sad.

5. What countries did you visit?

Nowhere. :-(

6. What would you like to have in 2015 that you lacked in 2014?


7. What dates from 2014 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?

February 6 was the day I landed in NYC for the first time. May 9 was when I landed for my second trip. The Fourth of July was when Kyera and Jordan surprised us all with their pregnancy announcement while our families posed for a picture.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?

Making it through a tough season at the day job.

9. What was your biggest failure?

Letting myself believe what others think of me.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?

If Empty Nest is an illness, I went through my second year of affliction.

11. What was the best thing you bought?

My iPhone 6. It’s taken my mobile usage to the next level. As in, I actually shop on it these days. Shoulda gotten a Plus!

12. Where did most of your money go?

Apps. I have an addiction.

13. What did you get really excited about?

My podcast #UnderFive! And my former podcast “Joey’s After Party!” I come alive in front of a mic. Also, getting a part-time job at Apple! It was the perfect early birthday gift. Right up there next to my new second-hand car. :-)

14. What song will always remind you of 2014?

Pharrell’s “Happy.”

15. Compared to this time last year, are you:

I’m more relaxed and surrendered.

16. What do you wish you’d done more of?


17. What do you wish you’d done less of?

Overthinking. It led to worrying, which led to procrastinating.

18. How did you spend Christmas?

Home alone cleaning and rearranging my bedroom.

19. What was your favorite TV program?

My same favorites from last year: Game of Thrones and The Walking Dead.

20. What were your favorite books of the year?

I bought way too many books through deals on Amazon. My Paperwhite is bloated and I have yet to actually finish something substantial. Budgeting books, creativity books, leadership, productivity, and Game of Thrones (I treated myself to the complete set), among dozens more.  I keep jumping around depending on my mood! My goal this month is to purposely finish at least one book a month.

21. What was your favorite music from this year?

A friend introduced me to TV On The Radio on Halloween 2013 and their song, “Wolf Like Me,” has been an ear worm ever since. Seriously. I couldn’t get enough of Mø, Aster, Lantlôs, Ghost Loft, and Kosheen.

22. What were your favorite films of the year?

Guardians of the Galaxy. The Amazing Spider Man. Anna (Mindscape.)

23. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?

I turned forty-five this year and spent it with three of my favorite people, my daughter and her husband, and my best friend. Kyera and Jordan took me to Carrabba’s, and Val took me to BurgerUp and Jeni’s Ice Cream.

24. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?

If I had not paused podcasting, I feel I would have done my soul a favor.

25. What kept you sane?

My friends.

26. Share a valuable life lesson you learned in 2014.

God is good all the time. Only you can choose what you will believe. Your thoughts can serve or hurt you. They need to be taken captive.

Thanks on Thanksgiving



Today was my second Thanksgiving at my daughter’s in-law’s house which I fondly call, Casa York. It was also the seventeenth year of my mom’s passing. I was grateful to be surrounded by people who love me and call me family.

Spending time with the York family has been such a far cry from the quiet existence my daughter and I shared for twenty three years. Our family of two has grown to more than a dozen.

Psalm 68:6 came to mind.

God sets the lonely in families.

Seeing her — and me! — surrounded by so much love, I couldn’t ask for anything more.

Cool Nashville

Demonbreun St.I never would’ve discovered as much of Nashville as I have over the past month since I started driving part-time for a ride sharing service. I’m slowly learning the city like I’ve learned the back of my hand: its nooks, crannies, bumps, and ridges.

Now, I need to actually carve out the time to go inside the places or go to the events where I drop people off. Nashville has so much to offer!

Follow 12th and Broad on Twitter for gems of info like these here.

I love this city almost as much as I love this other place. Maybe I want to live here someday.