Decisions influenced by family and friends

Linda Conway Eriksson - Contributing Columnist

This brand new year, 2017, is upon us ready or not. It’s a clean slate, in that most of us have 358 more days in front of us on which to make our mark.

Too bad we can’t just make it simple and make nothing but good decisions all year. Not that we won’t try. Otherwise, why make New Year’s resolutions? If we think about it, nearly all of us want to do the right things.

Nobody I know consciously sets out to hurt others, do harm in general, or try to be a terrible person.

So what happens along the way that can turn our perfectly good new year into something else entirely? Who and what influences our behavior, how we think about things, and the thoughts we act upon versus those we reject?

I find a lot of decisions I make are strongly influenced by family and friends. Fortunately, my family is made up of some mighty good people whom I respect and admire. (Get over yourselves now. I didn’t say you’re perfect.)

While you can’t choose the family you’re born into, your friends are up to you. Over the years, I have accumulated some awfully good friends. They have my back, while keeping me grounded.

Circumstances I can’t control play a part as well, but that’s a story for another day.

Actions, repeated often enough, become habits. And we know, don’t we, that habits, both good and bad, are hard to break.

One of my resolutions is, as usual, to eat right long enough for a healthy habit. It’s hard when you love your food like I do, but here goes.


1 pound ground turkey

1 egg

1/2 cup seasoned bread crumbs

1 teaspoon chopped onions

1/4 teaspoon crushed garlic

1/8 teaspoon black pepper

1 tablespoon tomato paste

1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Combine all ingredients and mix thoroughly.

Form meatballs from 1 tablespoon of meat mixture.

Bake 15 to 20 minutes in preheated oven on a lightly oiled jelly roll pan.

Serve with sauce of your choosing.

Serves three to four.

Linda Conway Eriksson

Contributing Columnist

Linda Conway Eriksson can be reached at

Linda Conway Eriksson can be reached at