November 17, 2018

Happy Birthday Friend

It has been nine months since my friend Alli passed away, and today is her birthday. I went to visit her yesterday and at the risk of sounding like a crazy person, we had a nice visit. I told her what was going on in my life and the world, and I felt comforted to be at the cemetery. I miss her in ways that nobody will ever understand. I worked for Alli for ten years and we went through a lot together. Even though I met her when I was in my forties, I grew up under her watchful eye and caring heart. Outside of my son, she has been the most important person in my life for a very long time and my heart remains broken by her passing.

 

Alli knew more about me than any other human on the planet. She was my friend, boss, teacher, spiritual guide, therapist, doctor, mother, daughter, and financial advisor, to name a few. I don’t remember what life was like before I met Alli, and I can’t quite figure out how life looks without her. She held my hand through a lot of things and I am better for having had her in my life. We experienced highs and lows together. We loved hard and fought harder. To mark her birthday I am going for drinks with people who loved her so we can raise a glass in her honor. I miss you Alli. Rest in peace Friend. I miss you and will forever be keeping the faith.

My Future Life as a Gay Man

Last weekend I went to my friend Justin’s birthday party. We live only 15 minutes away from each other, but met through friend’s in Australia. We bonded quickly and have spent the past two Thanksgivings together with our Aussie posse. He is my go to friend when I need a pick me up because he always has a positive outlook. I love him very much. He is kind, funny, charming, and has a generous spirit. He is dependable and always ready with advice that is 100% spot on.

I have met wonderful people through Justin. He surrounds himself with lovely souls and has built a family of friends. When I walked into his birthday party I was greeted with kisses and genuine happiness to see me. What made it so special is that most of the people were strangers to me. Justin introduced me as his friend, which automatically made me their friend. I felt welcomed, embraced, and included.

I was a 52-year woman, surrounded by twenty something, handsome, and charming gay men. I was told I had great hair, pretty eyes, and fabulous boobs. I was welcomed into every conversation, and asked about me and my life. It was supportive and inclusive and I felt like I was in the gay version of a kibbutz. For anyone who knows what the community of a kibbutz is like, you will understand what a great feeling it was. There was something very Jew-ISH about the birthday party.

Important to note I would have made out with most of the men at the party, and a couple of the women, which is fun since chicks are not my thing. Some of the men were so beautiful I would leave the lights on and not focus on sucking in my stomach, just so I could focus on how handsome they were. Dear Lord. I left the party with a sore neck from all the head turning as I watched a parade of gorgeousness, mostly in Speedos.

I have decided I want to come back in my next life as an attractive gay man who is loved by his parents and living out loud. I loved being a part of Justin’s family and was happy to have a glimpse of what my next life as a gay man looked like. Can’t wait. To my darling Justin, Happy Birthday! I love you and was honored to be included in your celebration with your family of friends. I wish you a year of health and happiness. You make me happy and inspire me to always keep the faith.

Happy Shabbat Birthday to Me

I am turning 52 this weekend. While not one to make a big deal about my birthday, this one feels important. It has been an interesting few years. By interesting, of course I mean difficult and enlightening. I dealt with cancer, neck surgery, my son moving out, changing jobs after a decade, and a very close friend of mine passing away after a valiant fight. It was all rather exhausting and to add insult to injury, as each challenge was tackled and overcome, another challenge was placed in front of me. I am a tough girl, but even I was brought to my knees on more than one occasion.

April 7th, 2018 will mark a new beginning, and it has been a long time coming. As I begin my 52nd year, there is nothing looming over me. I am completely healthy for the first time in three years. I am embracing my empty nest in ways I never thought I would. I have learned the important lesson of never coloring my own hair or cutting my own bangs, instead leaving it to the professionals. I have mastered the art of making the perfect Cosmopolitan. I am aware of my own worth. Most importantly, I know I am a wonderful human being,  terrific mother, and getting better with age.

My life is blessed and I have nothing to complain about. How awesome is that? I am going to go to services tonight and pray with my rabbi because she brings me real joy. Tomorrow I will celebrate my birthday in San Francisco with my son. We will explore a city that matters to us, have an amazing dinner, do some birthday shopping, and have dim sum lunch in Chinatown. A 24-hour getaway with my favorite human. I will walk in the rain, and pause long enough to count my blessings between the martinis I’ll be enjoying. Shabbat Shalom and Happy Birthday to all who celebrate this weekend. Be safe and have fun. I will enjoy the weekend while keeping the faith.

Happy Birthday Dad

Today, November 22, 2017, marks what would have been my father’s 79th birthday. He passed away when he was only 63, and I often wonder what he would have been like had he been blessed with old age. I wonder how my life would be different had he been here to guide me, and how different my son would be, had he had his influence for longer. It makes me sad and I feel cheated by his dying so young.

Robert Angel was an amazing man and I loved him very much. He took care of me not only when I was a child, but when I was an adult and had a child of my own. He and was the kind of dad who always had a story, or an answer, or a solution, and a joke. It did not matter what was going on in my life, he was able to help me, even if it was just to listen and offer quiet support. I miss my dad more every day.

My son reminds me of my dad. They have similar mannerisms, the same sense of humor, and the same full head of fabulous hair. I can look at my boy and see my dad, which is a blessing. I am thankful my father got to meet my son and get to know him a little bit. He has eight fantastic grandchildren, but sadly didn’t get to meet them all, so I am lucky I have memories of my dad and son together.

My father loved my son and they had a lot of special little things together. He would have been close to my boy had he lived to see him grow up. He would have been the grandpa with pictures on his phone, ready to show anyone who wanted to see his grandchildren. I am certain that just like me, he would have watched my son on television and cried. He was strong, bold, and brave. A wonderful human being.

I will go out tonight and raise a glass in my father’s honor. I will say his name out loud, and thank him for watching over me. I will talk about him with my son so he never forgets him. I will be happy to have had such an amazing dad, and sad to have lost him too early. Happy Birthday Robert Angel. You are loved, and missed, and still the head of our family. I will see you again, so I am keeping the faith.

October 2017 News: Happy 50th Birthday To Me!

Happy Birthday Lisa Niver Oct News

October 2017 NEWS: Happy 50th Birthday To Me!

Thank you for your support of both We Said Go Travel and me! My 50 Things Before I am 50 Project has been amazing. For my 50th birthday, I went skydiving with GoJump Oceanside! I will be sharing the video soon and also the photos from my stay at The Pantai Inn in La Jolla which I loved!

 

I spent most of October celebrating in different parts of California with friends and family. I went on a road trip to Santa Cruz and hugged 1000 year-old trees with my high school teacher, Joannie Parker. I went to a double 50th birthday party in San Francisco during Fleet Week and had birthday dinners in La Jolla and Los Angeles.

Did you read about my time at the #SeeHer Emmy party in Hollywood? I loved learning about the Women in Entertainment Project. Did you know about all the luxury things you can do in Las Vegas? I drove a Lamborghini Huracán GT and swam with sharks at Mandalay Bay. I have really been enjoying my 50 things before I am 50 project. Here is more information about my stay in Rancho Mirage with my first golf lesson and when I drove BMW M3s on the race track!

WHERE CAN YOU FIND MY 750 TRAVEL VIDEOS?

Lisa and Marcie biking in Tahoe

Here are links to my video channels on YouTubeAmazon Fire Tv, and Roku Player. I hope you enjoy my “This is What it is Like” Episodes! I now have 750 videos, 645,001 views, 1470 subscribers on YouTube AND my total video views across all platforms is now over 1,340,000 (1.3Million)! Thank you for your support!

Find videos from this summer trip to Europe in my articles about Monaco (country 97), IrelandScotland (country #98) and San Marino (country #99) Video #749 = Travel Media Showcase in Cabarrus, North Carolina. This conference brings together travel journalists and destinations! I went to the conference in 2016 for the first time and this year I was the GRAND PRIZE Winner for my coverage of Grapevine Texas in 2016.

Video #750 = My very first ever mountain biking lesson at Northstar California Resort with Specialized Bike Academy!! (read about it in POPSUGAR!)

 

 

TRAVEL WRITING AWARD: 

Thank you to everyone who has participated in our We Said Go Travel Competitions! Find the winners for the 2017 Inspiration Award here. The entries from the 2017 Summer Independence Award have been published and the winners will be announced next month.  There is no Fall Gratitude award this year. We are working on a redesign for the website right now. Look for more writing awards in 2018.

What Picture will you share in WSGT Travel Photo Award 2017TRAVEL PHOTO AWARD:

Our first ever Travel Photo Award is open! Thank you to our judges, Gary Arndt from Everything Everywhere and Jeana from Surf and Sunshine. Enter here Share your favorite shot! Why do you love it? How did you create it?  Submit a photo taken in the last two years. There is no fee to enter and there are cash prizes!

Check out our Travel Photo Award SPONSORS

Want to make your own video? Use code WESAIDGO10 for 10% on your project. Lisa loves working with EpicMakers and they are a sponsor for our first Travel Photo Award.

travelphotographyacademy.com

My fortune cookies said “Forge ahead with your new ideas.” and Your talents will be recognized and rewarded. I wonder what will happen NEXT?!?!!? Thank you for your support. Lisa

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