Good morning and Happy New Year!  I promise not to take up too much of your time today because I know you are eager to get to your appointment at the Blowout Bar, or to refresh that  mani-pedi.  Or both.  After all, who among us wants to greet the New Year with cowlicks and chipped nails?

So what stands out for you in 2016?   Politically, can you remember a crazier or more tumultuous year?  Never has the word “Oy” been more aptly applied.

On the one hand, I’m really glad that 2016 is over.  On the other hand, 2017 is full of uncertainty.  We are a nation on the verge.  Exactly what we are on the verge of remains to be seen.

About that, I shall say no more.

On the personal side, it’s been a pretty good year.  A few more aches and pains, but so far the original body parts are still intact.

Remember Sam, the new dog we acquired last January? My husband and I are madly in love.  With him.  He continues to be a source of pleasure and a great deal of joy.  I highly recommend the experience.

Professionally, a few notable things did happen in 2016.  My book, How Old Am I in Dog Years? garnered a couple of honors.  The first was back in January, when it was chosen as one of 12 worthy of participation in the Delray Beach Library’s Authors’ Showcase.  The second was in April, when I won second place in the Humor category at the Independent Publishers (IPPY) awards.

For better or worse, I and my blog and book became part of Twitter, and actually have followers.  We are also feelin’ the love from over 1,000 little thumbs up on Facebook.

And Brooklyn accent notwithstanding, I’ve had multiple requests for speaking engagements.  I hope they keep coming because it’s something I really enjoy.  And I’m working on the accent.

So what are you looking forward to in 2017?  Below are some highlights for me, my personal brief listicle of some things to which I’m looking forward in 2017.

  • The end of 2016.
  • Season 9 of “Curb Your Enthusiasm” with Larry David. (Or is it Bernie Sanders?)
  • The historic total solar eclipse taking place on August 21, for which I hope Donald Trump does not take credit. (People – it’s a joke.  Or is it?)
  • And last but not least, the return of Wonder Woman in a new movie. And just in time, too.  We need her magic bracelets now more than ever.

Will I be making any resolutions this New Year’s? Why spoil a recent trend? It’s been working so well.  So I am again sharing the promises I make to myself that I will have no problem not keeping.

I present once more my personal reforms that will NOT happen in 2017.  If nothing else, I am consistent.

  • Spend time at the gym.
  • Eat more vegetables.
  • Give up Cool Whip.
  • Lose weight.
  • Shop less.
  • Get more sleep.
  • Organize my desk and keep it organized.
  • Stop wasting time watching Law and Order
  • Improve at golf.
  • Cook at home more often.
  • Always hang up my clothes before I go to bed.
  • Read James Joyce.
  • Wear a bikini.
  • Complete a Sudoku.
  • Solve even one clue of a London Times crossword puzzle.
  • Never write another critical essay about my husband.

Enjoy this evening, whatever you’re doing.  A Happy, Healthy New Year to everyone.  And once again, from the bottom of my heart, I thank you all for putting up with me.  Your support means everything.

sam-with-hat