As I have enjoyed being a guest blogger a number of times, I decided to start a new feature on my blog and share some interesting people with you.
I have always liked the quote: “Everyone has a story to tell. Everyone is a writer, some are written in the books and some are confined to hearts.” Savi Sharma
It’s very true, everyone has a story and sometimes we just have to ask questions to find out that story!
So what I’ve done is invite my guests to answer a set of 10 questions and I am using their responses as a guest post while I’m away. It’s a great way to share the love around and introduce interesting people to other interesting people.
I started with my sister Sharon who you can meet here: People of Interest #1 – Meet Sharon and she responded the next day with a post from the guest’s point of view, it’s a great read! Life’s Like that: on being a guest blogger
Who better to include in this list of interesting people than my blogging friend Donna from Retirement Reflections? You deserve to know more about her story so here is Donna’s guest post in my new series!
Guest Post Series: Donna from Retirement Reflections
Thank you to Debbie for inviting me to Guest Host on her blog while she is away. I’m Donna from Retirement Reflections. I enjoyed the varied thought-provoking questions that Debbie gave to me to answer for this post.
If you would like to join in on the fun, why not take one of Deb’s questions (e.g., What are five things that you won’t leave home without?) and leave your own answer in the Comment Section. I would love to meet you there!
1. What do you enjoy most about blogging?
I initially began blogging to document my transition into retirement. I have stayed with blogging due to the inspiring connections that I have made.
Last October, I met up with the first retirement blogger whom I regularly began to follow (Janis from RetirementallyChallenged). By the time that this post publishes, I will have met up with Janis again…and four other bloggers whom I regularly follow. These ‘real-life connections’ are an amazing perk of blogging that I never previously knew could happen. I love the writing, the reflecting and the researching (nerd, I know). But the meaningful connections have quickly become my number one blogging motivator!
BTW – Don’t you think that Deb should add Vancouver Island to her list of travel adventures? A meet-up with her would be so cool! (Deb says YES to that idea!!)
2. Your blog is about retirement – where did the description come from?
That’s easy! “New Chapters, New Discoveries and New Adventures” are what I was hoping to experience during retirement and to document on my blog. There are often high and low points during retirement transition. But so far, these initial expectations have been met (and surpassed) one-hundred fold!
3. What plans do you have for your blog in the future?
I previously thought that I was an advanced planner and goal setter…until I met others in this corner of the blogosphere who put me to shame! One thing that I have enjoyed about my blog is that I’ve stayed in the present with it and have always taken it one step at a time. My hope is for that to continue!
4. What’s your favourite post and why?
A Love Letter.
I wrote this post as part of a gift to my husband to celebrate our wedding anniversary. He cried when he read it. It was the fourth post that I had ever written and published. It set the direction for me to write more personal posts from then on.
5. What’s your biggest achievement in life to date?
For the fourteen years prior to my retirement, I served as Middle School Principal, then Deputy Director, at The Western Academy of Beijing (China). I loved my career, got to know many amazing people, found the work to be rewarding and felt respected and appreciated. I am incredibly grateful to have had this experience.
If I could only be remembered for one thing, I would most like to be remembered as being the best mother, grandmother, wife, and daughter possible. This is the key focus of my retirement!
6. What do you like to do outside of blogging?
Travel, hiking, yoga, reading, book clubs, euchre, cooking, listening to music and trying new things. Best of all is the luxury of time to hang out with friends, family, children, and grandchildren. Absolutely nothing in the world can beat that!
7. What books do you like reading and what are you currently reading?
I am fortunate to be a member of two amazing book clubs. I am often found scrambling to read a book for one of these groups. Recent reads have included ‘The Winter Palace’ (Stachniak), ‘The god of Small Things’ (Roy) and ‘A Walk in the Woods’ (Bryson).
As I am currently up-to-date in my reading for my book clubs (a first), I am now reading, Best Friends: The True Story of the World’s Most Beloved Animal Sanctuary. Earlier this month, my husband and I had the opportunity to volunteer at Best Friends in Kanab, Utah. It was extraordinary! You can read more about this organisation here. I also recently posted about my personal experiences as a visitor and volunteer.
8. Where’s your dream holiday destination?
Okay, so perhaps this photo does not exude ‘dream holiday’ vibes for everyone. But I strongly encourage anyone looking for a ‘walking holiday adventure’ to consider the Camino Trail (Spain). My husband and I completed 700 km in 32 days this past summer. And slept in 30 dorms similar to this one! You can read more about our Camino adventures here.
9. List five things that you won’t leave home without.
I just dumped out my bag to figure this out!
5) Identification. (Because you never know.)
4) Money/Credit Card. (For spontaneous adventure…and to make up for any items that I desperately need and have forgotten to bring with me.)
3) Keys to get back into the house/car. (I hate to be locked out.)
2) iPhone. (Equally useful for emergencies, boredom and many things in between.)
1) My bag itself. (Where else would my husband stash his reading glasses, newspaper, extra sweater, etc. etc.?)
10. Who’s the most interesting person you’ve ever met?
Without question, my family is filled with the most interesting and remarkable people that I know. To avoid narrowing this down further (and inadvertently getting myself into trouble), I will answer this question with a non-family member. The Western Academy of Beijing has the distinct honour to have Dr. Jane Goodall visit regularly. It was an incredible privilege to meet and to get to know such a distinguished person.
What struck me the most, is her down-to-earth nature and humbleness. In the attached photo she is eating (vegetarian) lunch in an open, multi-purpose area of our High School. During her visits, she declined to stay at hotels and stayed instead in a small apartment with one of our teachers whom she has known for many years. Her work with our students was awe-inspiring!
Thank you again to Debbie for inviting me to join you here today. I look forward to chatting with you in the Comment Section. Let’s connect!
Donna’s Links – please feel free to go and follow her on social media:
Thanks Donna for your responses to my questions and for agreeing to be a guest host in my People of Interest series. I learnt a lot from Donna’s answers.
Donna has been inspirational and a real support to me when I started my forced transition into retirement last year. As my husband and I are talking about walking some of the Camino next year we will be using her posts as a very important resource.
Donna and I would love to hear your thoughts on her post, so feel free to leave us a comment below and we’ll be sure to respond.
So there you have it – another Person of Interest! Next up I have another great blogger for you to meet – stay tuned.
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