International Women’s Day!

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I have to say, I like special days. Birthdays, Christmas Day, Mother’s Day. I know some people don’t as they say every day should be special. True, but a day that has a name gives you a gentle nudge. So today, International Women’s Day, I’m sending out a little gratitude (and a rose) to the universe for all the special women in my life. :)

It’s a rose – no, not like the ones they hand out on The Bachelor/Bachelorette. It’s a rose for all the women I know that make my life a better place. :)

My Top 10 Favourite Women

My mom
She’s been there from the start. When I rant, she listens like it’s her job. She makes me food, she calls me to make sure I’m OK or sometimes just to chat, she bakes cookies for my son, she still slips me $20 for gas sometimes. And I’m a little ashamed to say I take it. She has taught me all about unconditional love.

My friend Annie
She’s been my best friend since Grade 7 in Miss Gillis’s class. I tell her everything, she’s probably bored half the time, but she never tells me so. She makes me laugh. She supports me when I’m down. She sends me funny emails. She has been there for me on all the important days of my life. She laughs at my jokes. She gets me.

My friend Franca
I think I get her. She always comes from the right place in her heart. She’s very thoughtful and cares (sometimes a little too much) about other’s feelings. And sometimes when she talks about things and does certain things, I think, Whoa, that could be me! That’s what I would do! That’s what I would say!

Alex at work
She’s my cube mate. She’s just young and sweet and clever and smart and cute and kind. She’s excited about the kitten she’s going to get. She likes to cook. She likes to eat. She loves her boyfriend. She has such a fresh take on life and says things like “Those are shiny, glossy people. I’m not that. I’m matte.” And today, because it is warm outside, this gem: “The water is running in rivers at Yonge and Sheppard. Take that, snowbanks!”

My niece Diana
I don’t even care if she’s my sister’s daughter. I’ve decided she’s my daughter. She’s excitable. And bright and fun and sends me hugely inspiring emails and music videos. Who else would do that? If it weren’t for her I would not even have heard about Mumford & Sons or Alabama Shakes. And now, Oren Lavie.

My other niece who’s really my daughter, too. Who’s getting married this spring. What a beautiful leap of faith, especially today, in an age where really no woman needs to get married in this country anymore. Can’t wait for the wedding!

The parking attendant at the underground parking in the building. I love driving into work and getting her happy smile in the mornings. Now, however, they have automated the parking and she is in an office, so I have to make an effort to go down and see her. Always smiles like she has won the lottery when she sees me, always gives me a hug like she means it and always has a great story to tell me.

Used to be my boss (for many years) until she got a promotion. Whenever there was a crisis in my life, or in my mom’s life or my son’s life, Susan always made it easy. “Right now, go. Take as much time as you need to. This is your priority right now. Don’t worry about work. We will handle it until you get back.” And trust me, when you are going through a crisis, that is exactly what you need to hear.

Evelyn Hannon
The genius behind I met her on a press trip to Italy, home of my ancestors. She made me cry. In a good way. And now she’s curated a beautiful photo collection, “Wonderful Women Around the World,” taken by blogger-photographers, capturing a moment in each woman’s life, as they circled the globe on their own journeys.

A lovely young woman at work. Sometimes I call her Grasshopper (you know, from the movie). But sometimes, I am amazed at the things she teaches me – about life. She’s much, much younger than me, but sometimes, she’s much, much smarter than me. It’s so refreshing to learn something from someone that you expect to be teaching.

How about you? Who are your favourite women?