Saturday, December 29, 2012

Life Looks Different Through Everyone's Eyes

It seems like just yesterday I was writing about the things I learned in 2011.  This year has gone by so fast but the things brought and learned in 2012 will remain with me forever.  It's a privilege to share them with you...

1) There will always be a hurdle somewhere along this journey but following my passion means perseverance .. perseverance always gets me closer
2) Giving to "My Community" is one of the most important things I can do - It's impossible to know when one small act gives inspiration, encouragement, or just a helping hand to someone who desperately needs it, so just give and know you may have made that difference
3) I love being a Grandma - I have the most adorable grandson on this planet
4) Take time for myself / stay healthy / exercise / find that calm (spiritual) rejuvenates my soul
5)  Some things just don't's discovering the "small stuff" and learning to "not sweat it"

Follow Your Passion

Cynthia Cosco

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

We've Come A Long Way Baby

The name Passaggio come from an Italian word meaning "passage way"  This has been quite a journey for me.  I hope you continue to follow Passaggio Wines.  You can follow this journey on Facebook and Twitter.

Ciao for now...

Follow Your Passion

Cynthia Cosco
Passaggio Wines

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Holiday Passion

The Holiday Season is upon us.  Shopping, eating, drinking, giving, and sharing..."it's the most wonderful time of the year."  I hope that you help make it memorable for someone special.  In our hectic schedules, let's not forget those in need this holiday season.  It is through sharing of our time, our treasures and our gifts that we give the most personal and important gift...a bit of ourselves...

Giving is what this season is all about.  Look around your own community and share a little something of yourself to help those in will make for a better and brighter holiday for you, for them and for all of us.

Check out your local community and see where you can make a difference, not only this holiday season, but all year round.

Follow Your Passion

Friday, November 9, 2012

Inside Secrets

Luna Sei Winery

What a journey this has been...

This is a photo of a collective of great friends in Sonoma who grow their own grapes and make wine in their garage. It has been my privilege and blessing to be a part of their journey. Guiding them through the process has been so much fun and they are making fantastic wines. This year they harvested two barrels of Merlot, one half barrel of Syrah Rosé and one barrel of Sauvignon Blanc. What a story they have! A group of six friends getting together, making wine and sharing it with their friends and family…I can't wait to taste their finished product...

At the beginning of this year I was asked to read through a home wine making book to see if I would be interested in endorsing it. As I read through it I began to think of all the people who would benefit from such a book...people who want to follow their passion for wine and home wine making. I also thought this was a perfect opportunity for me to pay back all those who have helped me by helping you make good wine…let’s follow your passion and start your journey

My journey of wine making has brought me to this point in time and I want to share it with you...
Check out the Insider Tips


Cynthia Cosco
Follow Your Passion

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Living Goals

I often look at the goals I have written for myself.  One thing I have noticed...they are ever changing.  The end result remains the same but the journey it takes to get there changes from time to time.  I believe our goals are ever changing because we are ever changing.  Our goals are part of us and change as we do.  They help us in our driving force for our passions in life.

Writing your goals down is an excellent idea but do not be too tied to them.  Let them be ever flowing as your life flows from day to day.  It's OK to change the path for the better from time to time but don't forget where it is you want to go.  Be's OK...

Follow Your Passion

Cynthia Cosco

Friday, September 14, 2012

Harvest 2012 is Underway

Harvest is one of my favorite times of the year.  The anticipation, the expectation, the anxiousness, and the excitement are all met with passion.  Winemakers throughout wine country are always excited about the harvest.  It's the beginning of new things, the  hope of a great vintage and challenge of making great wines.  This year's harvest is looking great and the yields are awesome.  I predict a great 2012 vintage!!!

Cheers everyone,

Follow Your Passion

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

A Community of Passion

If you look around your community you can find ways to participate in some of the most rewarding things that are happening.  When I look around my own community I find wonderful people doing amazing things.

Every Saturday someone goes to the local bread shop and picks up 4 large bags of day-old bread and delivers it to the local homeless shelter for their "Souper Center".  Every week someone takes the donated groceries from the church to the local food pantry that feeds hundred's of desperate families every day. 

Linda Schneider, founder of Self Sustaining Communities (SSC) in Richmond, CA has started several self-sustaining communities in the Richmond area.  They are an organization working with low-income residents, community residents and city officials to create sustainable local food production in distressed and needy neighborhoods. What awesome work she is doing in and for our community.  What a difference in people's lives she is making.  One person at a community at a time.

The organization started with delivering fruit trees to the local low income areas of the East Bay. There have been 9400 fruit, nut and olive trees donated since 2009.  Chickens, rabbits, beehives, gardens, etc, have been up and running by the local community residents.  They take care of it themselves with the help of members and volunteers of other local communities.

Look around...can you see the passion around you and the potential to join in?  I challenge you today to find your passion, be involved in your community and bring others with you.  What's your vision for your community?  You can play a big part in the lives of those around you just by picking up the bread and delivering it to the local homeless shelter.

Follow Your Passion

Cynthia Cosco

Friday, July 27, 2012

To Be Called Grandma

Oh to be a grandma...If you are a grandma, you know what I am talking about.  That little bundle of joy that gives you hugs and kisses is the best thing in your life.  What you wouldn't do for him or her.

I am visiting my son and daughter-in-law who live in Virginia.  Of course, my motives for visiting are not just to see them but a little guy that I dearly grandson, Levi.  Wow...lots of energy in that little frame of his. 

We have read books, watched Elmo, played with his toys, and are learning to walk.  He wears grandma out, but I love it...those little kisses are all worth it. 

Everything is always new and exciting.  No matter how many times you read that same book it's always exciting.  No matter how many times you watch Elmo singing The Elmo Song it's always exciting.  We go through our day seeing things through his eyes - everything is always exciting.

Even though he is not talking yet you can understand what he is saying most of the time.  I can't wait to hear what he is going to call me.  If it's grandma, that will be OK.  Whatever it may be I will love it.  I think I've earned the title of Grandma...LOL

Today we have places to go and people to we need to get ready to face the outdoors.  We have another exciting day ahead of us.

Can't wait...

Follow Your Passion

Cynthia Cosco

Monday, July 16, 2012

Knitting Your Passion

Follow Your Passion has become a household phrase...I see it everywhere.  Follow Your Passion - Passion Conferences - How to Follow Your Passion - The Passion Test - Rightsizing Your Passion.  The list goes on and on...

I have had several people say to me "I can't quit my job to follow my passion!"  I say "You don't have to quit your job."  You can still do those things that you love to do.  It's not about how much money we can make.  It's about reaching our community with our time and talents.  It's about what you do with that passion.  You can make a difference in the lives of people around you with your passions.

I have a friend who is a nurse in San Francisco.  Her passion is knitting.  She makes beautiful things with a ball of yarn and two needles.  It's her passion but she can't quit her nursing career to sit and knit.  She decided to take her passion of knitting and share that talent with the local homeless shelter.  She holds a class  on Tuesday evenings teaching those in the shelter how to knit.  She has done amazing work in the lives of some "just sitting and knitting" with a group of people every Tuesday evening.

So - What's Your Passion?  How are you reaching the community around you?  Find a way to Follow Your Passion and share it with others around you...

Follow Your Passion

Cynthia Cosco

Monday, July 9, 2012

My First Trip to British Columbia

It was an absolute pleasure sharing great food, awesome wines, and wonderful friendships on my trip to Canada...thank you Sandra Oldfield, Lisa, Susan, Yvonne Arnold, God's Mountain Estate, Melissa, Ken Oldfield, Jeannette, Brad, John...and all who made this possible...

Turn your speakers on and enjoy...

Follow Your Passion

Passaggio Wines

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Mission: Possible

   My business is my passion.  Passaggio Wines was started in 2008 following my 15 year law enforcement career. I moved to California to follow my passion to pursue a life making quality, food-friendly wines.  I left Virginia in 2004 and launched Passaggio Wines with my 2007 vintage.  Passaggio's flagship wine is an unoaked Chardonnay.  I love to bring great wines, awesome food, and wonderful friends together.  Sharing is all part of the Passaggio story.  After a few years I added a Pinot Grigio, Rosé, and Pinot Noir.

   Passaggio's success is based in the loyal customers and friends made along this wonderful journey.  Passaggio wines has given me the chance to meet some of the greatest people during this pilgrimage.  They have made my success.

   Passaggio Wines unique quality was birthed from it's passion.  Built on a shoestring budget, I was able to launch my dream.  The unoaked Chardonnay's of today are getting great press and I am proud to have been on the cutting edge.

   I need your help to receive 250 votes to be eligible for a $250,000 grant from Chase Bank.  Just click on the above icon.  Sign in...type in Passaggio Wines - Sonoma, California and cast your vote...

   Thank you for your continued support...

   Follow Your Passion

   Passaggio Wines

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Me and Mr. Whiskers

When I moved to California to pursue my dream of wine making I decided I wanted a cat.  I went to the local shelter to see what they had.  I began to walk through where they had the cats and kittens and I noticed this cat had come up to the front of his cage and began meowing as if he was saying "how about me...?" He was a beautiful black and white cat weighing about 20 pounds.  The shelter thought he was about 9 years old.

I couldn't walk away from him.  I asked if I could take him out of his cage.  The attendant took him out and we became best buds almost instantly.  He was the one...

When going through the adoption process at the front desk I was asked where the cat was going to sleep.  I looked at the girl behind the counter and said "anywhere he wants..."

When I got him home he needed a name of course.  I have no clue why, but the shelter named him Larry.   He had the longest whiskers on a cat I had ever seen (could it have been because he weighed 20 pounds?) so I decided to name him Whiskers.  He immediately settled in and began running the house.

Whiskers became my best friend.  He followed me around like a little puppy dog.  He protected me from sock monsters and loved to sit by the stove when I was baking Salmon.  (of course he would get a small bite) We had a fenced in back yard and he loved going out and just sitting in the grass. Our evening ritual was the same; he loved sitting next  to me while I was on my computer and oftentimes helped me type.  He woke me up every morning at 6am.  We had our routine down.  Or I should say I had his routine down...

It wasn't long after Whiskers that Mattie was brought into the house.  Mattie is an Airedale.  She was 8 weeks old when I got her and of course Whiskers explained to her who was the boss.  They became friends but Mattie knew who was in charge.

Whiskers soon developed some eye problems and had to have surgery on his left eye.  Over the years he lost sight in that eye.  He later developed diabetes.  I gave him two insulin shots a day for the rest of his life.  He had to have his blood sugar checked every now and then and his insulin adjusted.  His immune system became weak and he was not able to go outside anymore.  His back legs didn't work that well and he kind of shuffled as he walked.  It was amazing that he could sense when a vet visit was upon soon as I went to get the crate, he would go under the bed just out of reach.

Over the years Whiskers earned the right to be called Mr. Whiskers.  He remained my loyal friend.

At the beginning of the year, Mr. Whisker's health began to deteriorate.  We made several visits to the vet and were faced with having to put him under to pull some teeth.  We soon realized that he was a little older than we had first thought. The vet said that Mr Whiskers was approximately 19 years old.

While Mr. Whiskers rallied a bit, he was tired and weak.  He began not eating and not drinking.  He soon had to have fluids given to him.  Since he would not eat, I wasn't able to give him his insulin shots.  He began to deteriorate very fast.  I had to call the Vet and was told to bring him in that next day.  I was going to have to make some hard, hard choices.

It was about 3am.  Mr Whiskers decided it was his time.  I picked him up and held him in my arms for a couple of hours.  He breathed his last breath at 6am that morning.  My heart stopped for just a moment.

I miss him terribly - that day eight years ago when the shelter placed him in my arms, he claimed his space in my heart...and he will always remain there.

Monday, May 7, 2012

It's Never Too Late

I remember falling down when I was a little girl and my mom there to help me back is kinda like that. We do fall down at times, we get discouraged, and have the tendency to stay down. It's not easy to just jump right back up again. Sometimes we need a little encouragement. Maybe even someone to hold out their hand and help us up.

There are times during your journey that you will need a friend or two to help you back up...find that right person who you know will be there no matter what the circumstance. Someone you know and trust to see you through the good times and the hard times.

Just remember that no matter what happens - dust yourself off, get back up again and keep going..."follow your passion"


Passaggio Wines

Friday, May 4, 2012

Wines with Purpose

Wines with purpose...what does that mean?

Well...I believe the purpose of wine is far more interesting than we think. There are several reasons the Passaggio Wines are created. First and foremost Passaggio Wines are created for you to enjoy. When you open a bottle of wine you are opening a whole life time of the vines' passion. The terrior where the vine has it's deep roots. The aromas and flavors that are connected to that vine. From your first sniff and taste, you can begin to feel the passion put forth from the winemaker and the grapes as they meld together in your glass.

Secondly, Passaggio Wines are made to pair with food. There is nothing better than sitting down to eat a great meal and having an awesome glass of wine that accents the food before you.

Last but not least...Passaggio Wines are made to share with friends and family. There is something to be said about giving a great bottle of wine to someone. It tells them you are one who likes to share. It shows you are someone who takes the time to pick out a nice bottle of wine to please them.

So the next time you purchase a bottle of wine think about it's purpose and the passion that brought it from the vine to your table. Enjoy the display of passion when that bottle is poured for your friends and family.

Follow Your Passion

Passaggio Wines

Monday, April 30, 2012

Wisdom and Fortitude

It's been awhile since my last blog post...Following Your Passion can get very busy you know...LOL.  Sometimes I loose track of time and forget that I haven't written a blog in awhile. 

My passion, Passaggio Wines, has gone through some changes this past year.  The wine bottles are sporting new labels, and there is a new website design being completed as I write this blog. (stay tuned for that)

Each harvest brings a new adventure and new challenges.  Each new challenge must be met head on with wisdom and fortitude.  Harvest of 2011 was quite a challenge for wine making.  At least it was for me.  I believe that the 2011 Passaggio Wines are some of the best thus far since 2007.

I certainly hope you are up for your challenges this year with wisdom and fortitude.  Whatever challenges you have ahead of you - I encourage you to meet them head on...

I would love to hear about them...

Follow Your Passion

Passaggio Wines

Monday, March 26, 2012

Three Marketing Tips my Dog has Taught Me

Mattie, my Airedale, an adorable companion since she was 8 weeks old, has taught me many things.  Some of those lessons have been ones of much wisdom... ones that resonate with me and are the core of my daily marketing campaign.  I am driven to share them with you...

1) Be Consistent - Mattie is the same day in and day out.  She greets me at the door every time I come home as if I have been gone for days.  She is always excited to see me and always has one of her stuffed toys in her mouth to show me when I walk through the door.  Customers like to be treated the same way.  When they walk through the door of your store or make a comment on your Facebook page, make them the number one person at that very moment.  Show them what you have with enthusiasm and passion.  Give them something to be excited about.  Treat them the same every time...

2) Be Willing to Share - When Mattie and Whiskers (my cat) are fed in the morning, Whiskers always has to have a drink of Mattie's water.  Mattie doesn't seem to mind sharing.  She knows there will be plenty left and always gets a drink afterwards.  Sharing our lives with one another is what it's all about.  When we share things or ideas with each other it makes us all better at what we do.  Twitter has been a great tool for me on that subject.  I love the sharing of ideas for businesses on #marketermonday.  I have a few favorites that I follow and get ideas from.  Thank you for posting those great thoughts and ideas...

3) Rest - Mattie takes a nap in the afternoon.  I am not saying that we need to take a nap everyday but we should take a break from our business (busy-ness) and rest.  When we rest from pushing ourselves so hard, fresh ideas will emerge and our customers will thank us for it.  We will feel better about ourselves and will be able to remain that consistent person that everyone loves to see when they walk through your door.

Mattie has more to teach me...every day is an adventure

Follow Your Passion

Passaggio Wines

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Liquid Gold for St Patrick's Day

What's on your table for St Patrick's Day...?

Passaggio Wines is all about great food, wonderful friends, and awesome wines.  Get together with some of your best friends this Saturday, eat some great food, and drink some green beer....celebrate life...

Although I may not be Irish, I will be raising my glass of Liquid Gold in honor of St Patrick's Day...


Passaggio Wines

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

It's Your Passion

I have been advocating and sharing the  "Follow Your Passion" blog for quite some time now.  It's time to share YOUR passion.  What is it that motivates you beyond anything else?  What is the one thing that you would or could do if you could do anything...?

I want to encourage you to share that passion wth others.  The more you share what you would love to do, the more you will be convinced that you can do it.  Share you thoughts on my "Follow Your Passion" Facebook page...just follow the link below...

Say it out loud!  Share it!  Go ahead - you can do it...

Follow Your Passion

Cynthia Cosco

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

It's What's in My Glass Tonight

I can't think of a better I'm going with this one.

 Each night (well, almost every night) I pick up a bottle of wine, look at the front label, read the back label, cut the foil, pull the cork and pour the wine into a glass.  Sound familiar?  It's a ritual that many of us do on a regular basis.  Then we usually take a photo of the bottle and post it to our friends to let them know what we are drinking for the evening.  It's like sharing it with the world...well maybe the Social Media world. :)

When we open a bottle of wine it's like opening a bottle of liquid passion.  It makes us want to share it (well most of us anyway - LOL) it makes us want to let others know what we are drinking.  The wine inside wants to be drank.  It wants to be shared.  It cries out " Experience the Passion."

So with that said - open a bottle this evening and share it with us...listen might just hear it speaking to you...

Follow Your Passion

Passaggio Wines

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Valentine Passion

Well...we all know this day rolls out every year.  Yep...same day every year - February 14.  Some dread it, some embrace it.  I challenge you today to embrace it in a way that maybe you haven't done before. 

Find one person, whether it be a co-worker, family member, friend, neighbor, or maybe even be a stranger, and tell them how special they are.  Let that be your Valentine to someone today - the lifting up of someones spirit...

OK - ready - set - go...

You might just be surprised of how it actually touches you!

Follow Your Passion

Passaggio Wines

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Watch Out for that Fork in the Road

According to Wikipedia "a fork in the road" is a metaphor, based on a literal expression, for a deciding moment in life or history when a major choice of options is required.

I was traveling to a friends house for a Superbowl party this past Sunday and had to use my Navigator.  Before I left the house I typed in the address and found the map directions to be quite far but it didn't look too difficult.  As I was driving, one of the instructions was to "take a right at the fork."  I started laughing, visualizing an actual fork sticking up out of the road.  The Navigator was telling me which way to turn and at that moment I realized it was much like my chosen career...the path I have chosen.  The directions were laid out for me and the destination was already known.  All I had to do was follow the instructions.  The plan was already in place. 

We often know exactly where we want to go, or what we want to do with our lives, but have no idea how to get there.  Writing it down and making a plan is often our first step.  Each twist and turn or stretch of road makes its way into our plan.  Then the distance is set with how long it may take us to get to each "fork in the road" and then to our final destination.

There have been several "fork in the road" moments in my life.  Was there a plan?  Sometimes yes and sometimes no.  At those times when I had no plan I found myself camping out a bit before traveling on.  (even in the literal sense, trust me, I don't do camping well... :) )

To get to where you want to be - get your directions first...don't try to wing it - you just might get lost. Keep your focus and follow your will find your way.

Wouldn't it be nice if we could just type our goals into a Life Navigator and get the directions...?

Follow Your Passion

Passaggio Wines

Friday, February 3, 2012

Pinot Passion

What a beautiful day in Sonoma...

OK...I admit it...I am passionate about wine.  Oh, I guess you already knew that.  :)  Today was a great day at the winery.  Just the thought of having a Passaggio Pinot Noir is exciting.  I went to pull samples of the Pinot.  (had to have a taste) Definitely some awesome flavors and aromas going on...Check out the label for this Pinot Noir!

I try to check the wines once a month to see how they are coming along.  Today was a good day - the Pinot Noir is tasting great...even if it is still very young.  This is going to be a great year...

Follow Your Passion

Passaggio Wines

Monday, January 30, 2012

So Confused but Pressing On

Following Your Passion.... to me this also means trying to keep up with Social Media, new technology, new phones, new ideas, and the list goes on. We have come so far since the phone booth days, but boy have I got news for's not easy!

Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, Blogger, Wordpress, Website, Social Media Examiner, Stumble, Gmail, Email, Benchmark Newsletter, Wineclub, LinkedIn, Tumblr, YouTube, Schoolfeed....OMG!!! what's a girl to do?  Calgon...take me away!!! - Take a deep breath...ok, better.  Anyone overwhelmed?  Now I have to decide which of these sites are best for me.

Looking for some feed back here - anyone....?


Passaggio Wines

Monday, January 16, 2012

Unplugged From the Matrix

Let me introduce to you a lovely friend I met on Twitter - Raelinn Doty - or better know as @raelinn_wine. Sometimes when you start conversing on twitter, or any other social media account for that matter, you hit it off and just know that you will be life long friends.  Raelinn is a wonderful friend and has been so kind to share her passion with all of us.

Living My Passion
"...Unplugged From the Matrix"

“I learned this, at least, by my experiment: that if one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavours to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours. He will put some things behind, will pass an invisible boundary; new, universal, and more liberal laws will begin to establish themselves around and within him; or the old laws be expanded, and interpreted in his favour in a more liberal sense, and he will live with the license of a higher order of beings. In proportion as he simplifies his life, the laws of the universe will appear less complex, and solitude will not be solitude, nor poverty poverty, nor weakness weakness. If you have built castles in the air, your work need not be lost; that is where they should be. Now put the foundations under them.” 

Henry David Thoreau - Walden (American Essayist, Poet and Philosopher,1817-1862) 

I first read Walden in the early 1990's. I was transformed in many ways through reading it. It was the beginning of a new journey. Thoreau's words resonated strongly with me. I could not deny that I was now living a new life---a more expansive one and more compassionate. My eyes were open now. Everything seemed like a small miracle. I felt as if I had awakened from a dreamless sleep or just got unplugged from the Matrix. I was like a kid in a candy store. I guess I still am. But from that time onward, I have lived my life in a way that constantly, however slowly it may appear at times, advances in the direction of my dreams.

I tend to dream big. I mean what's the point of dreaming, really, if it isn't HUGE?  The way I see it is very similar to the Thoreau quotation. If I dream big, aim for the stars, build castles in the air, and I really aim for it... I mean REALLY start behaving as if I can make it all happen---that I AM making it all happen---I find that it just happens, almost of its own volition, almost as if I have done nothing. There is hard work involved, to be sure (building the foundation under the castle in the air). And no one can do it but YOU. But the thing is, it doesn't FEEL like work. It is an incredible pleasure to wake up and do everything I love to do and call it work. There is a big caveat. It sometimes doesn't pay as well as you might like---Not at first. There will be tradeoffs. But eventually success will arrive. The important thing is to never give up on your dreams or yourself. If something doesn't work, scrap it. Learn from it. Start again smarter. Just don't give up.

For the past nearly 3 years, I have been working hard to bring my dreams into reality, traveling all over, uprooting myself time and again. I recently took a huge leap in the direction of my dreams with a new brand •r. I've pooled all my resources and poured them into one business... ME. Ask me if that is scary... go ahead. The answer is, it is TERRIFYING---terrifying, yet exhilarating! But behind it all is the massive, driving force that I MUST, that there is no other way. THIS is what I dream. THIS is what I will do, what I AM doing. And you know what... the success is already arriving. Almost before I even began. I can't wait to see how it all unfolds.

What's the takeaway? GO FOR IT! Whatever “IT” is for you. I bet you know what it is. Start advancing now. Does it mean drop everything, quit your job and take off? Not necessarily. Just begin advancing. Every day do something that inspires you, moves you ever closer to whatever “IT” is for you. And DON'T GIVE UP.

Need a little inspiration? I recommend you follow my dear friend Cynthia (Sin-Yi) Cheng on Twitter at @boldmsbond for her wonderful daily encouragement to be bold. If you happen to live in NYC, she holds breakfast meetings.

If you enjoyed what I have to say and you are interested in what I'm doing now, you can find it HERE.

Follow Your Passion

Passaggio Wines