Look Up from Quarantine to Sun Gate of Maui



2020 has been a year of many trials, tribulations, and might I add tantrums. However, many times we forget the gifts that come with challenges and change. Whether you know the stories of Teddy Roosevelt, Oprah, or Thomas Edison, it has been proven by many, myself included, that failures and losses give birth to tremendously great movements, careers, creative endeavors, and philosophies. I call these moments When All Balls Drop moments, stemming from my crash course in Life 101 eleven years ago today; however, we will have to wait and see what history books or pop culture influencers call 2020 and its countless hurdles. I don’t know about you, but I’m really over the whole, “Hindsight is 20/20” jokes and the 24/7 news cycle version of the Pandemic Depression.

Look Up – There are Souvenirs from 2020

Even though the news, whether fake or not, may seem dire, I can name numerous souvenirs of 2020 that come to my mind. In fact, I used a little trick, the Look Up Mantra, I created over a decade ago to find the positive in any seemingly negative circumstance. The Look Up Mantra reminds us all to do two things: 1) Be in the moment appreciating the beauty around you as well as hazards & 2) Find the upside in any situation as all hurdles, hiccups, and losses turn into wisdom. Using Look Up, I have come up with a quick list of 4 souvenirs of 2020. I bet that they will resonate with you as well.

More Time, New Ideas, Different Recipes, and a New Definition of Home

In 2020, with more time, I wrote another version of my screenplay With New Eyes. I had years of feedback to reread from directors and producers, but I hadn’t the time to sit down and dedicate myself to it. Likewise, I did my research, watching and reading some of Hollywood’s classics. Also, I came up with new ideas. I decided to help my friends who are like family to me with entertaining/educating their children, a total of six kids ages seven to eleven. I put on my former Spanish teacher sombrero and Zoom taught from South Florida to Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Arizona. But that wasn’t the only hat I donned. I wore the hat of a baker of banana bread, beer bread, and Irish soda bread before I found the ever-elusive yeast. After a shipment of yeast from my mom in another part of the country, I made no-knead bread and my grandma’s buttermilk biscuits. Since I’m running low on yeast again, I’m joining the sourdough starter peeps. I’ll let you know how the new recipe works. I’m on day four of six.

A New Definition of Home in a New Home

Currently, I’m working on a new definition of home in a new home. Last week, my father and I left South Florida after more than umpteen years in Fort Lauderdale. After numerous, long flights, we joined my other half in Maui. Of course, the pandemic and other factors had postponed this move: sheltering in place, travel bans, curfews, and trying to sell a home during a pandemic and hurricane season. However, we are all three getting used to our new hybrid home/office/gym. After months of quarantining in Florida, these two weeks quarantining in Maui should be a piece of cake especially with the view shown above and below. Although I’m partial to the hours of sunset versus sunrise, our new home/office/gym faces East and Haleakala, the Sun Gate. In order to share a dose of Look Up inspiration, I have created a video with live audio from our neighborhood chorus to go along with a montage of sunrises. Enjoy Look Up from Maui, Hawaii!

What Are Your Gifts of 2020?

I bet that I left out other gifts of 2020. I’d love to get your list of 2020 souvenirs in the comments below.

As always, here’s to looking up from wherever you are in 2020 and beyond!


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