2012: Its a Wrap!

 tumblr_mesm22hUYm1rlofo9o1_500_large

A special wish to all my readers for a happy and prosperous 2013.

Thank you, for your encouragement and comments throughout this past year.

2012 has bought me many wonderful memories and unforgettable moments as well as some fantastic times writing on this blog.

I write, from my holiday porch tucked away in the beautiful Alpine Valley of Victoria.   My view is a panorama of stunning Australian bushland.  Around me birds sing, frogs croak in the nearby pond and the sun sets for the very last time this year casting its shadowy veil across the fabulous landscape.

Could there be a more perfect time to ponder and reflect upon the past events and delights that this past year has brought?   And a fitting time to hope with optimism and confidence of what awaits in the New Year!

To wrap up this years selection of posts; I present the
Top 5 Posts of 2012

Capture d’écran 2012-01-01 à 21.51.29

Princess Mary Style Roundup: 2012

Presenting a round-up of the Crown Princess of Denmark’s most stylish and elegant ensembles of 2012.

bc_wasmg_2009_0367v2

Queen Elizabeth II: the epitome of sophistication and style

In anticipation of Queen Elizabeth II’s Jubilee Celebrations in June this post celebrations one of Britain’s glamorous and sophisticated royals.

158400111865239272_wq4PUoWa_c

How to Develop Poise

In response to my biggest Google search, ‘how to develop poise’ this post brings you answers to the compelling question.

tumblr_lzd9ezEGPl1qke3bko1_r3_500

Words of Wisdom No. 12

In celebration of February the 5th, Valentines Day.  This special post focused on the special someone in our lives.

tumblr_m0jookH9QO1r7b6zco1_500

My Top 5 (not-so-secret) Secrets to Weight Control

My personal tips and hints on how to keep that weight at a balanced level and create a happier, healthier you!

Wherever you are at home or abroad enjoying the holiday season, I wish you a truly wonderful year ahead!

Enjoyed this post?  Why not follow me on Twitter or join me on Facebook?
Thank you for stopping by – do come again! xx

New Year’s Resolutions. . . January in Review

Can you believe the first month of 2012 is almost over?  How time is flying!
As we step into a new month, I’ve decided to take a look back and review the goals I set at the end of 2011.  Have you followed through with your resolutions with as much enthusiasm and energy as you did when you put them to paper?

I’ll be honest and say that I’m glad there is another 11 months left to the year to keep improving and progressing with the commitments I set as I definitely need it!

If you’re feeling that you’ve not progress as much as you’d have wished in the last 30 days don’t feel discouraged. . .

Be of good cheer. Do not think of today’s failures, but of the success that may come tomorrow. You have set yourselves a difficult task, but you will succeed if you persevere; and you will find a joy in overcoming obstacles. Remember, no effort that we make to attain something beautiful is ever lost.

Here’s a look back at January’s posts on Grace & Poise with the first month of the year being our highest rated with over 7,660 hits!

❤  Etiquette Refresher: How to eat Soup

  Words of Wisdom #9

  The Brilliance of List Making

  Bad Manners – the Biggest Problem Facing Society?

  Introducing the Elegance Round-up

❤  Elegance Round-up #1

  Words of Wisdom #10

❤   Happiness – it’s Your Responsibility

  Words of Wisdom #11

A very big, warm thank you to all our lovely readers who have joined us in the new year! 

Happy New Year!

With 2012 just moments away, I’d like to take this opportunity to thank all of my readers.

Without you this blog wouldn’t be what it is today.

Thank You!

Your continued support, your comments, your encouragement, your re-tweets and even your little direct messages fill my heart with happiness and inspire me to keep writing.

As we step into the year 2012, will promise to bring many more new additions and we wish you another year of good health, happiness, love and blessings.

New Year’s Resolutions

“We will open the book. Its pages are blank. We are going to put words on them ourselves. The book is called Opportunity and its first chapter is New Year’s Day.” – Edith Lovejoy Pierce


As the New Year approaches many of us look with great expectation, delight and hope.  The future is uncertain and mysterious.  Where will this new year take us?  How will it change us?

Each time a new year approaches a joy swells within me!  There is a part of me that loves the unknown, filled with excitement and adventure. Having the amazing opportunity of another year to improve, grow, develop, mature and strive for the best.
It also gives me opportunity to see how I have changed and developed over the past year.  Have I developed the skills and matured to the standard I had hoped?

Over the past month I’ve been considering all these things and in such times I have mentally checked what I’ve successfully accomplished and also what needs more improvement.

For a lot of us it’s easy to set goals and targets to accomplish in the coming year but how many of us actually arrive at the end of the year having our list all checked off? Well, not many, according to a study by author and psychologist Richard Wiseman. His research found that 52 percent of resolution-makers were confident that they’d achieve their goals, yet only 12 percent succeeded.

So the question prevails how do we successfully accomplish the goals that we set?

Be Specific

This year, rather than making a broad goal such as “I’d like to exercise more” or “I’m going to eat healthier this year” let’s try making it more specific. How will I exercise more? Make a plan of when and how you’re going to exercise more.  What ways can I make sure I can continually eat healthier? Plan a menu perhaps or think in smaller portions.  Small changes make the biggest difference.

Don’t Give In

If you’re anything like me you’ll arrive at the end of January and feeling like it’s time to press the refresh button and start all over again!  But you must remember that doing your best is as far as it goes.  How about reviewing what you’ve successfully achieved at the end of January and measure yourself at the end of each month?  Maybe that would make progress much easier and more fulfilling.

Do It Now

Does the word “procrastination” have any correlation with goals and success for you?  Well, for me – yes it sometimes correlates very well!  Rather than telling yourself you’ll do it tomorrow or you’ll start next week; why not start today.  Today is just as good as tomorrow or any other day!  And just think – by next week you’ll already be forming that awesome habit!

A Sneek Peek of my 2012 New Year’s Resolutions

For years I’ve been a great sucker for New Year’s Resolutions.  Even when I was much younger I’d write my goals down in a diary (in the neatest hand-writing possible 😉 and keep myself tuned throughout the year to my progress.  Well now, even as an adult not much has changed.  I even still have some of the same goals as back then!   The only thing I guess that has changed – is that my list seems to grow every year and the goals are much more defined and bigger.

Do it in the Morning!
Nothing is more beautiful than the fresh, dewy morning hours!  Perfect, new and untouched they are yours to fill and create.  This year I’m determined to wake up earlier and set aside time to meditate.

Exercise 2+ x Weekly
Really, I’m the person with NIL excuses.  I have an awesome gym membership which is open between 5:30am to 9am.  No more words needed.

Forgive and Forget
This has been weighing on me heavily for the last few months.   Sometimes people are in your life to refine and polish the bumps and unlovely parts.  I have realised that I need to learn to love and forgive even before an apology is granted as it may never come. I need to realise that everyone is doing their best in life.  Give them the benefit of the doubt.

Delete the Negative
This is actually something that has been in progress for the last year and I have been surprised at the fantastic benefits I’ve found both mentally and emotionally when I continually see the good in everything that happens to me in life. It’s my goal to keep pursing this and re-defining it.

Be Grateful and Thankful
Ah, yes.  Everyone – absolutely everyone has so much to be thankful for.  One of my favorite things to do in the quieter moments is to reflect on how I’ve been blessed and how my life has through the twists and turns turned out so wonderfully. (Even though it’s far from perfect!)  I’m committing to taking time out to remember how good God has been to me on a regular basis.

Now . . .
I could easily ramble on for much long detailing my numerous other goals but let’s list a few awesome ones for your inspiration. . .

  • Serve Others
  • Use Google Reader to keep track of websites
  • Put yourself in other people’s shoes
  • Take 100% responsibility for everything that happens to you
  • Live minimistically
  • Be curious. Learn something new.
  • Learn to apoligise
  • Realize that you’re never quite as right as you think you are
  • Let go of things you can’t change. Concentrate on things you can
  • Smile often, even to complete strangers
  • Be honest and take things face-value
  • Take time out to rest and rejuvenate every week
  • Be kind to everyone
  • Become more organized
  • Identify the problem
  • Be polite and be fair
  • Be gentle on myself and those around me

Happy New Year!

happy-new-year-gp1
As we turn the page and enter a new chapter for Grace & Poise, in 2009, our readers can expect a few new additions!  We hope to bring a few new features to the blog, and also broaden the focus of Grace & Poise.  Over the past two years our main focus has been on the guidelines of etiquette and deportment, discussing what they are and the details thereof. So the new features we hope to include are personal Style File of the author, (details coming), I also expect to be hosting a Formal Dinner in 2009 which I am looking forward to documenting with details and photographs.

I wish to thank all my readers for their lovely comments, emails and encouragement to keep this blog going.  Without you this blog would not be possible! Blogging is not my full-time occupation (how I wish it was!) however, the tiny amounts of time I do have to spend researching and writing articles is certainly well worth it!  – Thank you!

To each one of my readers, I extend a warm “Happy New Year” to you all.  I hope this year brings much happiness and joy to your life.

Best Wishes,
Clare Duncan