[Sign Up Now] to Receive Our FREE Daily SCVTV-SCVNews Digest by E-Mail

Santa Clarita CA
Mostly clear
Mostly clear
Today in
S.C.V. History
December 17
1925 - Jenks Harris robs Piru bank of $11,000 [story]

The Good Long Road | Commentary by Jennifer Fischer
| Saturday, Dec 28, 2013

JenniferFischerI am not really big on resolutions. I prefer to reflect and set intentions for each new year. Typically I do this by selecting a “focus word” for the year.

For 2013, the word was “abundance,” but perhaps not in the way you might think. Not focused on the abundance of stuff, but rather a focus on appreciating the fullness of life.

In a dictionary I recently consulted, the second definition stood out: “overflowing fullness.” For me, that means a home filled with laughter or a kitchen overflowing with the smells of a delicious, home-cooked meal.

At the beginning of 2013, I noted another example of abundance: the fullness of sharing not only my life with my husband, but also sharing our professional goals as we struggle together as independent filmmakers and arts educators.

In short, the point was to recognize the abundance in my life just as it is, not how wonderful life would be “if only.” I have to thank Shawn of The Abundant Mama Project for helping me shift my focus so I could recognize the abundance of my life — as is.

For 2014, the word I’ve chosen is “compassion.” This choice grew out of keen observation of the world around me, not only right in my own community, but also in the much wider world.

There were certainly moments this past year when violence, destruction, misunderstandings and hate loomed large, or moments when I’ve viewed, at the supermarket perhaps, extreme anger over something quite minor.

In these moments and observations, I note the need for greater compassion in the world and realize that focusing on fostering compassion in myself and with my family is a good place to start.

As I shared recently on my blog, I decided long ago that when I didn’t have an “answer” or “solution” to a challenge or a “fix” for someone in need, I would always just try to give more love to the world. In short, I would try to respond with compassion.

The value of that, and the need for greater compassion in the world, feels necessary. So I am looking forward to this new year and to exploring, truly and deeply, what it means to foster compassion.

Do you make resolutions or set intentions for the new year? If so, and you feel like sharing, pop over to The Good Long Road on Facebook and let me know. I’d love to hear it.


Jennifer Fischer is co-founder of the SCV Film Festival, a mom of two, an independent filmmaker and owner of Think Ten Media Group, whose Generation Arts division offers programs for SCV youth. She writes about her parenting journey on her blog, The Good Long Road. Her commentary is published Saturdays on SCVNews.com.


Comment On This Story
COMMENT POLICY: We welcome comments from individuals and businesses. All comments are moderated. Comments are subject to rejection if they are vulgar, combative, or in poor taste.
REAL NAMES ONLY: All posters must use their real individual or business name. This applies equally to Twitter account holders who use a nickname.


  1. why is your posting format so confusing? I keep thinking this is spam

  2. Fatty mole under her nose

  3. It’s interesting that a piece promoting the need and value of compassion in the world receives such harsh criticisms. For a more heartfelt look at my selection of the word compassion and the inspiration for it, I’m sharing another piece: http://jennifischer.blogspot.com/2013/12/compassion-my-word-for-2014.html — I am hoping for a kinder and more thoughtful world in the new year. I see the importance of starting where you are with those that “surround” you, even if virtually. I wish you all a happy new year.

  4. Kiri says:

    Thanks Jennifer, I struggle with pinning resolutions down to anything too specific, but I like the word idea and your choice of word too. The world can always do with more compassion and while it is always tempting to leap to judgement, having that word as a reminder just gives you a little pause to think about a response in difficult situations.

  5. Sheila says:

    I typically set a new family theme, something for us all to work on, around this time of year. I believe greater compassion in our homes and in our communities is needed. Deciding to respond to anger with compassion rather than rage, respond to fear with compassion rather than mocking another, and respond to ignorance with compassion rather than hate would have a tremendous impact on our lives. You’ve inspired a train of thought for me. Thank you! Your pieces are always insightful.

  6. stacy says:

    Excellent choice Jen, we could all benefit from a world filled with more compassion and wouldn’t be nice if we could practice a bit more of it online as well? I’m not sure what our word will be just yet this year … will have to think on that for a bit.

  7. Chelsea says:

    Love this article, and I agree compassion is so needed in our world on ALL levels. Considering the feelings and needs of others before we do, say, write, or even think anything. Imagine if we all did that.

  8. Becky says:

    I love this. Thank you so much for sharing- empathy and compassion are the most important lessons we can teach our kids and students!

  9. Barbara says:

    My one little word for 2013 was gratitude. Not just like remembering to say thank you, but to find something to be grateful for in all things, even challenging, difficult, hard things. Ten days into that resolution, I was hit head-on by an alcohol-impaired driver and I really had to work to mine gratitude while lying broken on a bridge waiting for an ambulance and a wrecker. But my focus word, gratitude, got me through some dark and trying times this year. So thank you, Jennifer, for these words of wisdom and reflection. I love what Chelsea said, too … imagine if we all did what you suggested … picked a focus word and worked at getting better! I’ve picked JOY for my 2014 word.

    Write on!

  10. Kim says:

    Compassion would be the world I would to describe you Jen so it will be fun to see how you implement it even more in your life in 2014. You are a role model for serving others. We’re deciding as a family for our word of the year this week and painting a picture of it for our wall. Blessings, Simplify, Motivate, Kindness, Connect, Joy are all in the running.

  11. Carly says:

    What a beautiful post — I love the idea of focusing on a word for the year Thanks for inspiring me!

  12. Theresa says:

    I love that you pick a word to focus on for the year. Abundance and compassion are both wonderful and inspirational choices. Thank you for sharing and inspiring.

Leave a Comment

Opinion Section Policy
All opinions and ideas are welcome. Factually inaccurate, libelous, defamatory, profane or hateful statements are not. Your words must be your own. All commentary is subject to editing for legibility. There is no length limit, but the shorter, the better the odds of people reading it. "Local" SCV-related topics are preferred. Send commentary to: LETTERS (at) SCVNEWS.COM. Author's full name, community name, phone number and e-mail address are required. Phone numbers and e-mail addresses are not published except at author's request. Acknowledgment of submission does not guarantee publication.
Read More From...
Sunday, Dec 10, 2017
Derelict since the 1994 earthquake, the Pioneer Oil Refinery in Newhall was the first productive oil refinery in the American West and is believed to be the oldest existing refinery in the world today. Unfunded restoration plans have come and gone. Now that the surrounding property is under development, will the promises be kept?
Friday, Dec 8, 2017
A National Memorial designation for St. Francis Dam will honor those who lost their lives in the nation’s worst engineering disaster and the role it played in ushering in a new era of oversight for dam construction.
Thursday, Dec 7, 2017
Eliminating net neutrality would allow Internet service providers such as Verizon, Comcast, Spectrum and AT&T to create a “slow lane” and a “fast lane” on the Internet, prioritizing certain companies over others and dictating what websites you’re able to visit and at what speed, or even blocking you entirely from visiting certain websites of your choice.
Monday, Dec 4, 2017
In his monthly message for December 2017, Santa Clarita City Manager Ken Striplin encourages residents to shop and party locally during the holidays to keep the cash in our community.
Friday, Dec 1, 2017
The big day is almost upon us and a year of celebrations is wrapping up. On December 15, 2017 our city will officially be 30 years old.
Thursday, Nov 30, 2017
Create and decorate your own holiday wreaths, centerpieces, candles and ornaments using a large assortment of fresh-cut greenery, pine cones and other beautiful natural treasures this weekend at the Placerita Canyon Nature Center.

Latest Additions to SCVNews.com
"The final tax reform bill released punishes homeowners and weakens homeownership, and in fact, it looks at homeowners and the housing market as nothing more than a piggy bank," said C.A.R. President Steve White.
Realtors: Final GOP Tax Bill Punishes Homeowners
1925 - Jenks Harris robs Piru bank of $11,000 [story]
1902 - Hi Jolly (Hadji Ali), Gen. E.F. Beale's Syrian camel driver, dies at Quartzsite, Ariz. [story]
The National Weather Service has called a Fire Weather Watch for this weekend for Los Angeles and Ventura County mountains and valleys including the Santa Clarita Valley due to gusty northeast wind and low relative humidity.
Weekend Fire Weather Watch Called for SCV
Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station deputies arrested a 21-year-old man who had an outstanding warrant and was allegedly in possession of cocaine in Canyon Country early Thursday.
Bicyclist Arrested for Warrant, Cocaine in Canyon Country
Valencia-based Princess Cruises, voted the #1 international cruise line in Japan, announced its 2019 program featuring Japanese-built Diamond Princess returning for her sixth season, sailing roundtrip from Tokyo (Yokohama) and Kobe.
Princess Cruises Unveils 2019 Japan Cruise Program
Valencia-based Princess Cruises released its 2019 Canada and New England cruise schedule, featuring Regal Princess and Caribbean Princess on the line’s largest fall deployment and the opportunity to visit Greenland roundtrip from New York
Princess Cruises Sets Fall 2019 Cruises to Canada, New England
The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department looks back at five years of work by its Domestic Highway Enforcement Team, which has disrupted the operations of the drug cartels by confiscating millions of dollars in illegal drugs and drug money.
Elite LASD Drug Enforcement Team Disrupts Cartel Operations
College of the Canyons quarterback Andrew Brito, wide receiver Desean Holmes and linebacker KJ Latu have been named to the 2017 Region III All-California Community College Football Team.
Brito, Holmes, Latu Represent Cougars on All-State Team
Tickets and sponsorships are now available for the Santa Clarita Valley Chamber of Commerce's 2018 awards ceremony and installation of new officers at Tournament Players Club in Valencia on Friday night, January 26.
Jan. 26: SCV Chamber of Commerce 2018 Awards, Installation Gala
Sponsorships are now open for the Santa Clarita Valley Economic Development Corporation's 2018 Economic Outlook Conference, set for Thursday, March 8, 2018 at a location to be announced shortly.
SCV 2018 Economic Outlook Conference Tickets, Sponsorships Open
SetPoint Medical, a Valencia-based biomedical company developing therapy for chronic inflammatory diseases, has received approval from the FDA to initiate a pilot trial in the U.S. for patients with drug-refractory rheumatoid arthritis.
FDA OK’s SetPoint Bioelectronic Therapy Study for Rheumatoid Arthritis
Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr., representing the United States - and states and regions leading on climate across the globe - joined world leaders at the One Planet Summit Tuesday, the two-year anniversary of the Paris Agreement.
Brown in Paris: ‘We Can’t Wait for White House to Wake Up’
The regular Planning Commission meeting scheduled for Tuesday, December 19 has been canceled, according to a notification from the city of Santa Clarita today.
City Cancels Dec. 19 Planning Commission Meeting
The next meeting of the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors is set for Tuesday, December 19, starting at 9:30 a.m.
Dec. 19: L.A. County Board of Supervisors Meeting
L.A. County's Bringing Our Loved Ones Home Task Force officials unveiled their final recommendations, endorsing a plan to use a voluntary system of trackable bracelets to find people prone to wandering, like those suffering from Alzheimer’s or autism.
County Task Force Calls for Tracking Bracelets to Locate Lost Individuals
The Community Development Commission of the county of Los Angeles looks back on 35 years of advancing its core program areas: affordable housing and housing, community and economic development.
County Community Development Commission Marks 35th Anniversary
Metro is seeking two new members to join the Measure M Independent Taxpayer Oversight Committee.
Metro Seeks 2 New Measure M Oversight Committee Members
The California Air Resources Board approved a $663 million low-carbon transportation plan Thursday to increase the use of clean cars, heavy-duty trucks, buses and freight equipment.
Air Resources Board OK’s $663 Million for Clean Vehicles
The Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station has released its public safety and crime information report for Saugus (Zone 4) for December 4-10, 2017.
Crime Blotter: Shoplifting, Petty Theft in Saugus
California Attorney General Xavier Becerra has filed his strong opposition to the Trump Administration’s illegal attempt to suspend the 2015 Clean Water Rule for two years.
California AG, 10 Others Oppose Feds’ Suspension of Clean Water Rule
Conservation groups on Friday lobbied a federal judge for permission to join a fight between the federal government and a ranching association over a trio of California amphibian species.
Conservationists Lobby to Join Fray Over Frog Habitat
1987 - Incorporation: Santa Clarita officially becomes a city [story]
With an offense that challenged the program’s single-season goals record, The Master’s University women’s soccer team was almost almost never out of any game it played: The Mustangs were always within striking range.
Lady Mustangs Within Range of Directors’ Cup Top Spots
When Ed Jackiewicz met Tera Trujillo in spring 2015, she was studying at a desk she’d carried to the corner of the California State University, Northridge soccer field, in a “time out” of sorts, unable to practice because she’d just earned a D in an economics class.
CSUN’s “Under Armour Faculty” Promotes Academic Success in Student-Athletes
When Rafael Munoz recalls his time at the Layer 8 Computer Security Club at California State University, Northridge, he feels proud and thankful.
CSUN’s Tech Education Makes Top 10 List
The city of Santa Clarita Arts and Events division is currently seeking proposals for solo exhibits for 2018 in the gallery space at The MAIN, the City’s newest arts venue in Old Town Newhall.
City Seeking Artists for 2018 Solo Exhibits
NORTHRIDGE, Calif.---CSUN Men's Basketball returns to the road for the final time in the non-conference season this weekend.
CSUN to Face-Off Against Formal Rival Eastern Washington
Here is a list of Santa Clarita arts-related events for Friday:
Dec. 15: Santa Clarita Arts Calendar
This Friday and Saturday (Dec. 15-16), The Sharon Disney Lund School of Dance brings their annual Winter Dance Concert to the REDCAT stage.
Dec. 15, 16: Sharon Disney Lund School of Dance Concert at REDCAT
The William S. Hart Union High School District Governing Board has approved naming Dr. Collyn Nielsen as Chief Administrative Officer and Jan Hayes-Rennels as Director of Special Programs and Staff Development.
Hart Appoints Nielsen, Hayes-Rennels to District Office Positions
NORTHRIDGE, Calif. - The CSUN men's volleyball team was picked to finish third in the inaugural Big West Men's Volleyball Preseason Coaches Poll announced Thursday.
Big West Pre-Season Coaches Poll Puts Matadors Volleyball at No. 3
A 44-year-old transient was arrested by SCV Sheriff's Station deputies Wednesday afternoon after he allegedly tried to pick up his 8-year-old niece from a school in Santa Clarita.
Suspect Arrested in Attempted Kidnapping
It was a night to honor exceptional mentors at California State University, Northridge, but the five recipients of the 2017 Don Dorsey Excellence in Mentoring Awards just wanted to talk about their students.
CSUN Pays Tribute to Mentors Who Have Made a Difference
The words leapt right off the page and hung in the air, heavy, encircling the audience. Their creator stood, offering his gifts of verse — shared in a powerful baritone voice.
Literary Star Power Comes to CSUN
While critical fire conditions continue through Friday, the final numbers for the Rye Fire have been released.
Officials Release Final Numbers on Rye Fire