Unsubscribe These Myths To Become Who You Are

By Redefining The Boundaries of Unlimited Possibilities. Fact is everybody’s truth — A rational mind loves it.  Fiction is nobody’s truth — An idle mind grabs it.  A myth is somebody’s truth — A mind looking for assurance snatch it. Usually, it’s a mix of...

Hope And Encouragement For Times Of Grief

A Grief Recovery Guide Grieving is one of life’s most challenging experiences. No one lives a life without loss or suffering. “Life is a long series of losses.  It’s pretty much the only thing that is guaranteed in our existence… I’m no stranger to loss. I don’t...

Maturity Is Knowing How Lucky You Actually Are

“We’re flawed because we want so much more. We’re ruined because we get these things, and wish for what we had.” -Don Draper | Mad Men In AMC’s Mad Men, Don Draper works in the advertising business during the 1960’s in New York City. He has a beautiful wife,...

7 Ways to Be a Traveler. Not a Tourist.

“The traveler was active; he went strenuously in search of people, of adventure, of experience. The tourist is passive; he expects interesting things to happen to him. He goes ‘sight-seeing’.” — Daniel J. Boorstin Being a tourist has its time and place. There are...

Forgiving My Toxic Mother for the Pain She Caused

I must admit I am at a crossroads in my life. In the last two years, since I left my home city, I somehow feel responsible for my mother’s sharp decline in her health. Her mental health, that is. All the chaos and heartbreak that ensues when she’s ill. It doesn’t...

Why Didn’t My Mom Save Herself?

I imagine her. She’s trying to navigate the living room filled with assorted junk, bags of garbage and unopened packages from QVC. She’s trying to be careful, but her shaky legs don’t cooperate. She steadies her gait with her cane as she heads for the couch. It’s...

You Are Not A Job Title

Stop living and acting like one. At the end of the day, the position is just a position, a title is just a title, and those things come and go. It’s really your essence and your values that are important. — Queen Rania of Jordan Let’s start with a question: ...

What Can Be Learned from a Car Accident?

Is there a life lesson to be found in getting into several car accidents? There’s a common belief that if your accident was minor and didn’t result in any serious injuries, that it’ll just fade into memory and get brushed under the rug. That’s not true though. I’ve...

Why Willpower Works And How You Can Get More Of It

The shortest shortcut to success Its been described as the ability to control oneself and the decisions one makes. As the ability to delay gratification and choose long-term rewards over short-term rewards. As a muscle that can be strengthened. We are of course...

How to Stand in Love

John Allen Lee, in his book Colours of Love: An Exploration of the Ways of Loving, defined the Greek word Pragma as a mature, realistic love found among long-established couples. Pragma is about making compromises to help the relationship work over time, and showing...

I’m Learning How To Talk

Yep. Like a baby.  “Are you okay?” “Yes.” 10 seconds later… Inner voice : WHY DID YOU LIE? I have always had a bit of a problem expressing my feelings as far as I can remember. Expressing it to people outside my family circle, to be precise. At home? No...

Freedom from Freedom (for Freedoms’s Sake!)

“Freedom may be mankind’s natural state, but so is sitting in a tree eating your dinner while it is still wriggling.” ― Terry Pratchett Freedom is a word that gets thrown around quite a lot, especially when subjects commonly held to be “political” get underway....

Bed

Just say it, when you need help The trouble I met is changing my attitude toward asking for help. When I looked at the room, the first things I noticed was the bed, located in the center of the room, a queen size bed! “Great,” I thought, “I could sleep well in the...

What do you hoard?

‘Fess up, is it shoes or handbags or hats or trousers or brooches that you love? Maybe you stash away PlayStation games or DVDs or books? I love necklaces and brooches, and kid myself that I’ve bought my last pendant …… for the Australian Summer anyway!  The...

They are more insecure than you think

Tips to protect yourself and maintain your sanity So you are in a meeting and it’s finally your chance to speak. You have an idea that you have been working on and you want to get this across. But you know there will be at least one person who will immediately cause...

How to be Happy; Why Most Get it Wrong

Have you ever watched someone dance without music? As I was sitting in my car outside the ballet studio where my daughters were taking lessons, I could see little girls leaping and twirling as I watched through the enormous windows. The graceful movement of the...

Why Having Confidence Should Not Be Your Focus

Many of my clients come to me struggling because they don’t feel they have the confidence to do what they want in their life or in their business. One woman, in particular, stands out in my mind. She’d had her business for years but wasn’t getting anywhere with...

You Feel Me?

Recently, someone I know — a fellow screenwriter — more of an acquaintance, than a friend, told me that he believed I was an empath. At first, this threw me. I instantly envisioned myself seated at a round table, leading a séance, even though I know that a “medium” is...

Happiness Is Nothing But A Perspective

If you think about it… “Happiness is letting go of what you think your life is supposed to look like and celebrating it for everything that it is.” — Mandy Hale What is happiness exactly?  It is a question that we ask ourselves from time to time, but find...

Immigrants

People crowding southern borders Struggle to escape cruel oppression, Fleeing South American countries Ruled by dictators with firm hands. On a daily quest for freedom Trying to find a life to live, Most with no intent to harm Only seeking opportunities. Compassion...

Reaching Cacao

 The Day I Pushed a Taxi up a Mountain in Nicaragua Above the cloud forests in Nicaragua is a tiny village where coffee and chocolate grow wild. It is extremely remote and difficult to access.  I traveled there recently to explore the viability of a future...

33 things I have learned in 33 years

Yesterday was my 33rd birthday. That means I have been around the sun 33 times and had the chance to learn a few things. I would consider most of these things useful in my everyday life, and because of this fact I have decided to share them with you.  Always be...

You are what you hide.

Beneath the surface lies our true nature.  Deep down lay the struggles we spend a large chunk of our mental energy suppressing. Former French government minister and author Georges André Malraux said it best. Man is not what he thinks he is, he is what he hides....

The Moment I Chose My Life

It ended badly, like most relationships do when you rush them. I met Donny in AA. When we broke up, I had seven months sobriety under my belt. I didn’t touch a drop of alcohol or use drugs in all that time, but the monster still raged inside me. Donny wasn’t allowed...

I Have a Clone

The Truth About Being a Twin and Its’ Common Misconceptions Recently, I was asked to talk about what it’s like to be a twin. If you don’t already know, or have never noticed, don’t feel bad. It happens all the time. Yes, I have a clone. And this guy is also on Medium....

I Had To Let Her Go

Saying goodbye to my mom Eight months after my dad died, I was standing at my mom’s hospital bedside watching as she slept. Her chest rose and fell easily because of the constant flow of oxygen from her nasal cannula. Her emphysema was not a surprise, given her 50...

Now

Life flows at same eternal pace Revealing mysteries all its own, What is present, soon to be past, New horizons coming into view. Horizons soon to be our present Once the future, becoming now, Visible presence with complexities Intriguing mysteries it conceals. No...

What You Need to Know for Baby’s First Flight

Flying with less Crying (for Babies and Toddlers) By my 20th birthday, I’d taken one trip involving air travel. One. By my child’s second birthday, she’d flown around the world. She’d done a half dozen long haul flights and at least a dozen shorter hops. Here’s what...

Firewood For Spring

Maybe developers will buy him out and he’ll make a fortune; much more than his firewood would bring.Spring danced in this week, tentative and teasing. She followed on the heels of deadly tornadoes, torrential rains, and record lows, and she will most likely get our...

Why You’re Absolutely Worth It

The Secret of Decision-Making From Tony Robbins and Me I have a suggestion for anyone interested in physical intimacy: wait. Draw a line in the sand. Throw down the gauntlet. Challenge your partner: “am I worth waiting for?” Make that decision for yourself. Decide...

Anticipation

Present feelings of anticipation Not sure why I feel this way, Accepting them in full awareness Waiting to see what happens next. Drama felt in life’s becoming Uncertainty in what path it takes, Some things are in my control While others randomly occur. My spirit...

Writing My Way Out Of Depression

I’m making myself write this. It’s been seven days since I’ve written anything. Most of the time, I aim for three to four blog posts a week. Writing is my favorite activity in the world, but depression is taking it away from me. It reared its ugly head at the...

What To Do When Mom Guilt Slaps You In the Face

There is no such thing as a perfect parent. So just be a real one. — Sue Atkins I have to get this out, and I have to hurry — fast!  The kids are running, the dog is barking to be let out, the dishwasher just dinged, and not 5 minutes ago the washer stopped...

Swan Lake, Pink Tutus and Dreams Doomed to Fail.

Last night the fat little girl in the baby-pink tutu dreamed once more.  The Impossible Dream. She went to see - The Russian Ballet performing Swan Lake. The soaring music of Tchaikovsky. The beloved story of Siegfried and Odette. Many years ago, she wanted to be...

A Day in a Metro

Metro trains are common around the world, but my city got one just a few years back. When it was first launched, everyone was talking about it. But soon, like all things the excitement had died down. Nowadays, the metro is sparsely used. On rare occasions when I’ve...

A Fire in my Soul

On approaching 50.  In just a couple of weeks, my half-century clock turns over. That day is quickly looming over me like a shadow, reminding me of where I came from, and where I could be going.  It’s only a number. I don’t FEEL old. In fact, I emotionally...

Don’t Believe the Lies

Tell yourself the truth I sat across from her with hope, maybe this counselor would help me. I knew the drill. I pour out my hurting heart, she tells me what she thinks. And then she said words I had not heard before, and I felt hope flicker inside. “I believe your...

The Purge

A creative nonfiction tale of catching fish. When cancer took Ouma, we lost more than a grandmother. Reeling from the loss, the tears not dried on their faces, her four sons decided, the farm had to go. Her two daughters’ voices, bitter in its opposition, didn’t carry...

Transitions

“You ask me what I came into the world to do. I came to live out loud.” — Emile Zola  It was hard not to notice themso I stooped down to inquire Muscari girl, you and your sisterswhatcha doin’ in my garden so early this year? We have come...

Spring Awakening

Cool spring morningNew sprouting growthGlistening sunlight. Spirits nurtured by shimmering sunAwakening from slow winter slumber. Aliveness always presentSurfacing once againNew creative thoughts. Feelings of love and reconciliationOld hopes in new spring awakening....

The Hook up at Motel 6

She spent hours and hours, flawlessly designing the perfect profile. She added photos that made her look more beautiful than she was and mastered the art of adding strangers, like her friends. Why wouldn’t they want to be her friend? She was stunning, and she composed...

What’s the Purpose of Life?

Have you really sat down and thought about it? People-pleasing, as a term, sounds so nice, like something we’d all want to do. Really, how could pleasing people be bad? Aren’t we often told to please people when we’re at work anyway? “The customer always comes...

Damned Spring

Chinooks, they say, for the last few days are blowing out windows, punching at trees,teasing of spring in the deadlock grim of winter;melting snow: powdering breaths of almost-summer,hale and evocative, driving me mad.In spring I know I’ve spent another...

How to be content

about always wanting more & the simple things in life Everyone seems to be running through life. The pace is getting faster and faster in a world that glorifies the word ‘busy’. We’re all trying to juggle everything at once, trying hard to advance in all...

Silkworm - How I handled a bully when I was a child

The Principle of My Life I could let you attack me once, I could let you attack me twice, but after you attack me three times, I have to fight back, catch whole power I could carry, fight back forcefully so that you would never, ever, not even think, be near me...

Trusting Truth

Truth, a forever lingering presence Powerful molder of our character, Critical in forming our personas To be who we authentically are. Who do we genuinely want to be? How do we want to be perceived? What character will personas have? Truth at heart of what answers...

Why We Need To Let Our Children Fail

Our hearts ache when our children suffer, but sometimes they are more resilient than we think. The parent scheduled an after-school meeting with teachers, advisors and counselors. His son was failing one subject and barely passing three others. “What can you do...

Creative Spirits

Feeling calm freedom within Patience pervades my spirit, No rushing urgency today Tranquility in being present. Heart enveloped loving kindness Compassion for my fellow beings, All similar, but uniquely different, Everyone with own personas. Creative spirits reside...

Smiling depression

Smile oh smile …beautiful features on the outside as your lips expand Smile oh smile …you keep appearing for no reason Inside a cry for despair, no one sees or notices your inner pain Inside you carry the healthy and the rotten…and the rotten keeps piling up...

How to Choose the Best Flight Path for Your Family Trip

“At least we’re flying First Class,” I thought. Boy, was I wrong.  Before we moved our young family to the other side of the world, I worried about the flight. I thought it would be bad because it was overnight. I thought it’d be awful because it was 13 hours long. I...

Is Transhumanism Enough to Overcome Global Suffering?

Higher intelligence, even one aided by Artificial Intelligence (AI), is not the solution that will end our suffering — a view that is promoted by transhumanists, who believe that the human race can and must evolve beyond its current constraints through science and...

Spring Arrival

Full moon shines through murky haze Ethereal glow before morning arrives, Enjoying stillness while darkness fades Stark awareness of silent presence. Cherry trees sprout glistening shoots Nurturing beginnings of new buds, Gradual opening of blooming blossoms A gift of...

Love It’s In The Details.

My father died four years ago of Stage IV Lung Cancer. As did my mother. I could say they “passed away,” I suppose. A softer, more palatable alternative. But, that’s not really what happens, is it? If only. Four years. It seems like a long time…but not really. Not...

Rest In Peace, Dear Friend.

I’ve been busy recently. A friend of mine died last month. I guess this is what life is; we never know the surprises, and some surprises just slap us on the face and stabs through our heart. Death is inevitable and nothing out of the ordinary happened to my friend....

This Is What Happened When I Stopped Dying My Hair

I took a journey to the dark side and I liked it. I went cold turkey and stopped dying my hair eighteen months ago. Tow-headed as a child, my hair darkened after I hit puberty. Like many women I fought back against nature. On my 16th birthday, I dyed my nondescript...

Hate to judge but love to condemn?

Here’s what happens when we get it backward. Years ago, I was listening to a radio report of an impending local election on a special referendum. As I understood it, the city was going to vote on the Wet Bra Issue. Well, I was immediately offended, loudly proclaiming...

How A Male Weasel Can Affect Your Fertility

And Other Strange Medieval Ideas about Women and Sex Deformed men. That’s what Aristotle said about women. Sure we know it’s not true, but in the Middle Ages it made perfect sense. After all, wasn’t it a woman who took the first bite of that infamous apple? Women...

How to Work Through Your Partner’s Jealousy Issues

Know this first: it’s not your problem. When I first met my current partner, he was handsome, thoughtful, attentive, and confident. He had had a rocky rocky life, but he was an entirely self-made man. These were some of the qualities I first became attracted to. But,...

Feral Kittens Need Your Love

The little kitten looks down at me from the catwalk above, mewing softly. It sounds a bit accusatory. After all, I did grab her by the scruff yesterday, throw her in a cage, rock us both side to side, bouncing, as we drove down the bumpy road down the side of the...

Pains Of A Homeschooler

Once Upon A Time… I remember the tremendous struggle I’d faced when I’d first started Homeschooling. My parents told me about the big break from school when I was enjoying my short vacation. The big break was nothing but a one month leave from school. Just to study...

Healing from the Trauma of Previous Relationships

It was a Thursday night. My partner was heading out the next day on a business trip and we wouldn’t see each other for a good two weeks, so we were having our last date night for a while. After dinner, he drove us to a Redbox to rent a movie to close out the...

Wishing for 2020

Reflections of a fifty-year-old girl When I’m imagining next yearAs if I’m gliding high through the skyWith a watchful and downward eyeLooking at everything from a bird’s-eye view I see people walking past each otherBut they do not really look at one another no...

Spaciousness

Spaciousness looms beyond horizons With no turmoil or violence seething, Peaceful presence, universe’s gift Enveloping us in its warm embrace. Its soothing comfort always here Waiting to be felt as time unfolds, No effort or movement on our part, Its eternal spirit,...

What learning Mandarin taught me about not giving up

Learning Mandarin is difficult. After 90 hours worth of classes and nearly 2000 flashcards, I’m still struggling to even understand everyday real-life conversations. According to the Defense Language Institute (DLI), Mandarin ranks as a Level 4 foreign language, which...

How I Got Rich By Giving Money Away

There’s a man I know. He leans against the wall outside the Walgreens I shop at almost every day. He might be in his sixties. I don’t know if he’s homeless or not. He has on the same outfit almost every time I see him. A blue baseball cap sits on top of his head. His...

The Ladder of Forgiveness

A friend once asked me, “How did you manage to learn to forgive, and live a normal life?” We were seated on her sofa, with packed boxes surrounding us. She had just left an abusive relationship, and she knew about the darkness of my past. I have recovered and survived...

Why Society Doesn’t Want You to Succeed

Photo by Max Bender on Unsplash Why Society Doesn’t Want You to Succeed  You’ve heard a chest-thumping guru or two say something along the lines of “everyone is just trying to hold you down!”  They’re right, but this way of thinking goes much...

Toto, I Don’t Think We’re In Kansas Anymore…

There’s No Place Like Home… There’s No Place Like Home! https://youtu.be/zJ6VT7ciR1o It’s safe to say, I had not a clue what I was getting into when we moved here. I thought it would be different. Well, it’s definitely different alright. Not in a good way. I won’t go...

The Day My Boss Disappeared

I first met Kevin in his office for an interview to be his secretary. He was an accountant and a mortgage broker, and I hoped my lack of experience wouldn’t show. I’d never been an actual secretary before. At the tender age of 19, my only experience was with data...

Breathe Deep: Give Peace A Chance

If you think you can or you think you can’t, you’re right — Henry Ford I don’t know what happened to me when I was four years old, but something did. There’s a picture of me from that summer, smiling shyly at the camera, my hair cut in a short bob, wearing a cute...

One Size Does Not Fit All

In high school, I was taller and broader than most of the guys in my class, let alone the girls. Add in the extra couple of inches for the big eighties hair and that put me over the six foot mark. That was the time of Nike Legends and Levi’s 501 Blues, which were...

This is What 70 Looks Like. Episode 2

It looks vibrant. It looks like leadership. It looks like wisdom. There was a collective sigh of resignation (or was it disappointment?) when septuagenarian Glenn Close was passed over for Best Actress in a Leading Role at the recent Academy Awards. The honor went to...

The Day I Saw Your True Face.

A Poem on the mask of deception. I remember your black mottled face,A face devoid of human intelligence;Your sleepy eyes peeping out like flickering candles,Thick, bulbous lips protruding like blistered coal,Gaudy mismatched clothes hanging around your bloated...

The Art of Filtering Out The Non-Essential

What Steve Jobs’ approach to dressing and design can teach us about simplifying our lives. The Art of Filtering Out The Non-Essential What Steve Jobs’ approach to dressing and design can teach us about simplifying our lives. Photo by rawpixel.com...

Lost Harmony

Time flows on its own courseWith life evolving as it flows,Beings think they have controlCreating discord and confusion. Harmony, our only way to peace,Without it chaos is always thriving,Conflicts sowed among many nationsWhile destroying our precious Earth. Humans...

How I’m Making My Own Rules

Nine of them. And you can, too. People often like to say they hate rules: they believe rules are made to be broken; rules are for fools and sheeple and chumps. At their best, such people are wildly creative and productive, bringing fresh thinking to the world. At...

Why Do We Self-Sabotage?

Has this happened to you?  You are working on a project, you have set the goals you wish to aim for, devised a plan of attack and got off to a great start, all guns blazing. Each week you take one — sometimes two — steps forward towards your targets. Everything...

Asking My Children For Forgiveness

My hands shook on the steering wheel as I made the turn into my ex-husband’s driveway. That won’t do at all. Once I put my car in park, I put one hand in the other and squeezed hard. I couldn’t show up looking like a wreck. What if he thought I was unstable? What if...

How To Cope Through Pain Being Your Best Teacher

Take chances, make mistakes. That’s how you grow. Pain nourishes your courage. You have to fail in order to practice being brave. — Mary Tyler Moore Pain has no face, but every human being feels when it shows up. It shows up without warning, often...

Our Prodigal

We pray for safe return Author’s note: This was written October 28, 2018. Since this was written we have established contact with our oldest daughter. Today’s subject is horrid. It is one I wish on nobody, yet one which plagues many families daily. For my wife...

Are You Rich and Don’t Know It?

I’m Crazy Filthy Rich — Maybe You Are Too People play the lottery hoping to get rich. Crazy filthy rich. But most people don’t win. Those who do often don’t stay rich. In fact, oftentimes the winners go bankrupt ending up worse than before they’d won and don’t know...

Mortality vs Immortality

Will We Survive Death? A few years ago, my brother died suddenly. At the funeral, I sat a few feet away from the open casket containing my brother’s body. This did not upset me because I kept thinking “THAT is not my brother. My brother was his spirit and personality...

When We Are Small

Despite the crying during our last visit, we took our grandson, Will, back to the Heard Museum to see the robotic dinosaur display. When you are shorter than three feet tall anything larger than a cat is intimidating, especially if it has sharp teeth and looks like it...

Complaining Won’t Ever Solve Anything

Complaining doesn’t solve anything. It’s an old saying but worth repeating, often. There may even be far wider consequences from complaining than we previously even thought. For instance, have you ever noticed how you feel after you begin whining and complaining? Do...

The Root Cause Of Discontent

Sigmund Freud wrote a book that changed the Western World: Das Unbehagen In Der Kultur. The English translation is “Civilization and it’s Discontents.” This, in my opinion, does not do justice to what he was trying to say. The German word, Das Unbehagen, is closer to...

Life Is Like Making Rice

Without the instructions I don’t have a microwave and haven’t had one since I moved to Guatemala. There are actually a lot of first world things I don’t have and honestly don’t miss much these days (except Canadian chocolate bars). Because I don’t have a microwave I...

Change sucks. Until it doesn’t.

Change sucks. Not the kind of change you planned for and now it’s here. The kind of change you didn’t see coming and it disrupts your normal. You are expected, known, beloved normal. I know maybe two people who will tell you they love that kind of change. Either it’s...

Adventure at the World’s End

isembarking from the cargo vessel, my legs wobbled as I moved down the gangplank. Moving slowly, I stepped carefully across the wet windswept boards that extended into the bay. I knew it would take a few days to get my land legs back. While sailors tend to be tough,...

What Will You Do When Facebook Jealousy Strikes?

Hit that like button? If you’re feeling blue, Facebook could be the culprit.  Those hours spent on social media looking at other user’s exotic vacations, new sports cars, and adorable children could be making you depressed about your own circumstances. That’s the...

The Collateral Damage of Failed Relationships

Something that is inevitable in any breakup, is the impact it has on the other people involved in your life.  Whether it is your children, in-laws, close friends, and even pets, there is always collateral damage. Those people become the debris that is left...

Yes, You CAN Learn How to Communicate with Aliens!

Understanding across divides – in this case generational – can be tough. But pressing forward to do so offers lasting rewards. It’s worth it! You’re a parent of a 12–16-year-old! Congratulations…and best of luck. Close your eyes and just grin and bear it…. Or, better...

Life Hacks Learned from a Toddler

As a father of a two-year-old most of my days — when I’m not at work — are spent caring for and raising my son, along with the help of my partner of course.  I am also the stepfather to a ten-year-old boy — who seems to have hit his teens sooner than expected,...

Patience, A Rewarding Habit

Many people view repetition and routines as boring. Where’s the excitement in doing the same thing day in and day out? The greatest achievers of our time achieved excellence through consistent habits. The journey may not have been exciting, but the payoffs definitely...

Adopt a Traveler’s Mindset

How Great Expectations Can Derail Any Trip When our girls were little, my husband worked long hours, often arriving home after the girls were in bed. I came to accept this as normal. The worst days were when I expected him a certain time and he was delayed. ...

How to Mentally Survive Losing Your Job

As I got up this morning, I had an odd thought about something that I never really thought I would experience. I’ve been unemployed for over a week. I still feel the stinging pain of it all. Some days it’s hard to stay afloat above all of the difficult feelings...

Top 10 Ways To Deal With The Critics In Your Life

If you have no critics you’ll likely have no success Have you ever gotten excited about doing something, only to be shot down by the people that you thought would support you?  It happens all the time. Maybe you decided you wanted to train for a marathon,...

Where Have All the Flowers Gone?

Does anyone care? It was a little before 1 in the morning and not unusual for me having trouble falling asleep. Out of nowhere the old Peter, Paul and Mary song, “Where Have All the Flowers Gone?” began playing in my head. As much as the song relaxed me, it elicited...

Entanglement

Terrors of memory slumber in the attic “I can’t go up there, Helen.” My wife looked at me over the white rims of her glasses. The gold flecks in the temples glinted in the late morning sun streaming through the window of our spare room. “I don’t have time to handle...

Teachers Need A Pat On Their Back Too!

And I’m Happy To Oblige. There was a time when I was a child that I truly believed teachers knew everything! Think about it! They teach kids and even grown-ups at the big people school. It would stand to reason, they know everything right?! As I grew up, I realized...

The Best Thing I Did To Change My Life

Unorthodox, cool and fun I like simple ideas that work. I’m a positive and plainspoken person but I didn’t grow up that way. I spent a lot of time being tragic and self-destructive. I was snarky and sardonic and bitter. That pretty much sucked. It took me a long time...

An Open Letter to Husbands of Creatives

I know it’s not easy for you to watch someone you love struggle. Especially when you feel like there’s nothing you can do to help her. You know how freakin’ talented she is and yet, you are firsthand witness to how difficult it is for your creative partner to work her...

Gone Fishin!’

Tiger Fish, Silver Torpedoes of the Zambezi Bream, of which there are many species, are pretty fish, with delicate colours, and are gentle compared to the tiger; the fishermen enthusiasts went out to catch bream, but it was the tiger that drew them for a day of sport...

Quiet Solitude

Snowflakes fall silentlyIn white barren trees,Distant mountains invisibleEnveloped in snowy vista,Spirits hover above. Nature’s morning arrivalLeaping deer in brush,Peaceful ShenandoahFelt in this momentNo disturbances here. New creative thoughtsIn quiet...

I Close My Eyes And I’m Overwhelmed

by the universe that comes to life inside my head All the space and time in which I can recall my existence. Everything that I have ever been, everything that I am and everything that I will ever be is there, inside my head. My notion of me. My notion of life. My...

The Girl with the Absolution Tattoo

I always enjoy notifications of Time Hop and Facebook, reminding me of what I was up to, on “this day”, years before.  Notifications reminded me that today marks 5 years since I went in for the final coloring of my most important tattoo. (I have 9). This is the...

The Enduring Allure of Fairy Tales

Fairytales are archaic stories, shot through with whimsical and fantastical elements. At first glance they might appear to make no sense and yet, the slow dawn of delayed realization reveals that scarily, they make very much sense. How was it that in all our glory of...

7 Hacks for Saving Time When You Have Kids

I left my ex-husband when my boy/girl twins were 18 months old. I immediately had to learn how to juggle all of the business of raising two children on my own, and now, a year later, we are doing just fine.  Whether you’re a single parent or sharing the...

Buddha and the Mountain Bike

The Buddha spoke of moderation in all things. The more years of life experience I gain, the more truth I realize there is to these simple but vastly eloquent words. Most often, when I find myself “off-course,” if I can allow myself to glimpse a reality outside of...

6 Steps To Help You Move Past Perfectionism

 Do you constantly seek approval from people around you? Is it incredibly difficult for you to accept being second best? Do you too often sacrifice your own well-being in order to complete a task perfectly? Are you consistently stressed and anxious? If you’ve...

Mind Power

Personal power of our minds Greatest gift we ever have, Create thoughts for us to use Determining eventual destinies. Sometimes ignored, or not considered, But guiding us where we go, No actions taken without thoughts And no creations materialize. Minds, reflections...

The Vantage Point

rom my vantage point, I knew I was surrounded. Basic training had prepared me for some of the hardships I would endure, but this was definitely a new adventure that no tech school can prepare even the bravest sniper or recon operative for. It was one thing to laugh...

Elevate Your Life With The Lousy Deal Hack

They say that happiness is a choice, but hey — then everything in life is. All your emotions, actions, thoughts. Dirty little secrets, big bold dreams. Bliss and misery, brilliance and mediocrity. Gettings things done or procrastinating for days on end, waiting for...

Do You Remember Your Bullies?

The girl in the fairy dress hated me on sight. I was five years old, and I’d been a child model for nearly half that time. My mother got me into doing it as her entrance into show business. I was in a commercial for Fidelity Savings Bank the year before. I played a...

Why Third Places Will Save Us All

How I discovered the lifeblood of community In 2011, I was living and working in Chengdu, China. I was rocked to my core with culture shock the first few months and sought out familiarity from the hutongs, the streams of scooters and smog at ‘Peter’s Tex Mex Grill’, a...

Flipping Our Worldview

The reason you and I struggle in the world is that we see ourselves as isolated beings in a hostile world. This makes us feel vulnerable to all sorts of calamities that could strike us at any time from any direction.  Consequently, we are fearful when things...

Confusion

Compassion for our world today Confusion reigning everywhere, People unsure of who they are Or how they really need to be. Disagreement when unity needed Conflicts over almost everything, Knows no limits or natural bounds As it spreads throughout our world. People...

We’re All Screwed Up — Yes, Even Me.

Everyone is filled with flaws All the lonely peopleWhere do they all come from?All the lonely peopleWhere do they all belong? — Lyricsto Eleanor Rigby by The Beatles Bad Days Photo by Warren Wong on Unsplash I have my bad days. You guys know the ones. Where you...

Grandpa, You Have Poop on Your Finger!

The first-day of Babe watch, a simple diaper check turned disastrous. I pulled back his diaper to investigate. That was when the gaseous green cloud escaped. During my investigation, I dabbed my middle finger into baby sludge. To make matters worse, the toxic vapors...

A Thousand Lost Golf Balls

According to the book 501 Great Writers, T. S. Eliot was one of the great ones. Poet, essayist, critic, playwright and children’s book author, his influence on the cultural landscape was extensive. I remember studying his works in high school with profound...

10 powerful lessons to find the right direction in life

Feeling confused, lost, painful, hopeless and miserable…So do I Are you now in a dark room without any glimpse of the light or any ray of hope?… You are not alone, welcome to the club of life my friend.  There will always be times when each of us will be without...

The Long, Weary Legacy of Women’s Speech and Power

Mary Beard’s manifesto is a must read.  When it comes to silencing women, Western culture has had thousands of years of practice. — Mary Beard, Women & Power You know it’s campaign season when then the New York Times runs a story about women tossing in their...

Why Choosing The Correct Path Is Important

In life change is inevitable. So important to make the choice to change before the change changes you. Will you choose the path of inspiration or driven onto the road of desperation? These two emotion-charged paths; inspiration or desperation, will drive people to...

Servant or a Son?

In the story of the prodigal son, Jesus unveils God’s heart. Two sons had deeply disappointed their father. One essentially took his inheritance and ran away. The other worked for his inheritance, not realizing he was working for something that was free. The Prodigal...

It’s too boring to color inside the lines

The declaration My four-year-old daughter was sitting doing her homework with mom. The work required her to color a particular set of shapes that made up a path she needed to follow.  As is customary with our toddler, she tends to get wild with her coloring. So...

Is it Ethical to Earn Money Off of Your Abuse?

2018 was full of stories of abuse. It was the year of the #MeToo movement, and multiple stories of celebrities like R Kelly, Donald Trump, Jacob Hoggard, and Bill Cosby. (These were only a few of the headliners in Canada)  All of these men were accused of sexual...

How to improve yourself by believing that you can

Growth Mindset vs. Fixed Mindset It’s just a matter of mindset! How often did you already hear that? Me for sure too often. No matter what it is that I am complaining about, my boyfriend is always the person saying ‘’This is just a matter of mindset.’’ And I can...

The Forever Home

The worse part of being a traveller is that you never know how long you will stay with any family. Sometimes it can be a couple of weeks, sometimes a couple of years. If you are lucky, on very rare occasions, travellers find forever families. This is such a rare...

I’m not one who celebrates love

Here’s a note from me to you my darlingFor the love of another is something we all seekBut I stopped my seeking and searching for meaningI lost hope and faith in love and humanityYou came along my beloved You became a friend and someone I could talk to without...

One Year After Parkland

There are more questions than answers. My 12-year-old daughter came home from school crying last week. There was a “code red” drill earlier that day. She didn’t know it was coming. Her sixth-grade math class was working on their pre-algebra projects when the alarm...

Every Breath I Take Is A Reminder Of My Blessings

That breath that you just took, that’s a gift Every breath I take is a reminder of my blessings. Each morning and evening, I inhale blessings and exhale gratitude.  The breaths of air that enter my body keep me alive and awake to endless possibility.  I...

Poor in West Africa

Learning from the Rich in Heart urrently, I am in the process of finishing my second book which is a memoir of my first visit to Liberia, West Africa in 2007. This small country used to be prosperous, but a devastating 14-year civil war absolutely decimated it....

Hey World

Hey world,My dad just died.How dare you keepMoving forward.It’s time to stopAnd show regardFor a man whoLoved his fam’lyWe miss him so. Hey world,Don’t just keep onRushing aroundAnd leaving usBroken and hurt.I may just endUp withdrawing From you and quitUntil I...

Can We Please Have A Funeral For Opportunity?

Our brave little Mars robot rover, Opportunity has died. This cool (it’s cold there) robot lady, Oppy, has been collecting intelligence about our human idiocy for fifteen years without a potty break. Or ro-botty break? She’s been brave, beautiful, and brilliant, and...

Experiencing Paris

Treasures galore as I explore ParisA city experienced, unlike any other,History’s presence an enveloping shroud, My sensory perceptions unusually heightened. In Paris my passions are fully arousedWith sensual feelings strong and deep,My personal awareness reaches...

How to Have Unlimited Access to Greatness

”You believe in honesty” — That’s mistake #1 “Many believe that by being honest and open they are winning people’s hearts and showing their good nature. They are greatly deluded. “ — Robert Greene. There are two kinds of people in this life: Those that believe in...

We Know What to Do, so Why Aren’t We Doing It?

We all have visions for the future. Of how we wish our lives to be. Huge aspirations, mammoth sized, scary almost impossible ambitions — if yours aren’t that big and scary give yourself a shake, dream bigger for goodness sake! In our daydreams, we are whisked away to...

Valentine’s Day is Coming Up

To Celebrate or Not to Celebrate “Valentine’s Day is coming up,” Charlie said while reading an online sports article. “Is there anything special you’d like to do?” Warm tears immediately slid down his wife’s face. Hearing her sharp intake of breath, he rushed over and...

Fleeting Thoughts

Thoughts from my distant pastIntruding in my current realm,Visions of what has come and gone,Realities thought forgotten long ago. Why do these fleeting thoughts appear?From what dimension do they come?Perhaps unresolved issues linger here?Are hidden years just coming...

How to Fix Your Life

You want more for your life. I can guess that about you because everybody wants more for their lives. There’s nothing wrong with wanting more — a better job, a better business, the right partner, great health, more opportunity, more reach more impact — but we all have...

How to Become Extremely Motivated?

(lessons from Elon Musk’s and struggling author’s stories) You can be extremely motivated by fear.  Jon Morrow was paralyzed from the head down. He imagined that he is left in some health care facility, he dies and nobody even notices for a few days. This picture...

Having Hard Conversations

Have them with the ones you love because you love them.  The last nine months of my marriage were a nightmare. I discovered I’d been living with an active drug addict and had been for almost the entirety of our nine-year-long relationship, AND I also had one-year-old...

The Stupid ATM Machine

A Lesson in Humility The road of life has never been easy. I have long struggled with health issues, some of them that brought me close to death. However, in the midst of all the struggles, even when living deep, DEEP in the steamy jungles of Liberia, West Africa, we...

Being Present

Deeply feeling my own presence Intimately knowing my soul within, Generously accepting whatever comes My spirit vibrantly thrives in peace. In harmony with the world that is With no resistance as life unfolds, Present in each precious moment Experiencing boundless...

I Thought There Was Nothing New To Learn

If you think you’ve seen everything, look at it another way and it becomes new. There are times when I think I’ve seen everything. I get this strange feeling. Maybe it’s complacency. Everything thing under the sun has been done and re-done. Nothing seems to surprise...

Talent Isn’t Enough

Talent isn’t enough. The first time I heard that statement, I don’t think I really agreed, until I took a closer look. I had seen plenty of talented people have lots of opportunities that seemed to elude me. But I also have witnessed fellow art school students who...

One way to stop romance from messing up Valentine’s Day

My husband is nothing if not economical. He loves me because I appreciate the finer things in life — him — and because I accept the things I cannot change — his economy. We do share one economic perspective: gift giving to each other. We don’t. In general, we have...

Adolescent Awakening

I refused to call them “niggers” as others didThose six black girls in sea of 1800 students,God-fearing community’s school integration,No brotherly love, just resentment and hatred. Haunted images from my adolescent painBeing torn asunder in puzzling confusion,I was...

How to Overcome Your Fear of the Future

I’m sitting here trying to avoid thinking about the inevitable drive to my parents’ house this afternoon. It’s only thirty minutes from where I live, but the drive itself has developed into one gigantic monster that I must battle every time I want to visit them (or...

Our Rescue Dogs Visit us While We Sleep

To Make Sure We’re Okay being Without Them For over the past twenty years we have rescued, adopted, fostered, and helped anywhere between thirty-seven and forty dogs. Being an accountant by trade, I am embarrassed at not being able to remember the exact statistics and...

Coming Home… Finally

It was a beautiful morning as I made my way to the galley of my ship for breakfast. Growing up on a farm in Kansas, breakfast was my favorite part of the day because the world is just beginning to come alive. The galley smells of bacon frying, and the sound of eggs...

The Forgotten Blessing of Your Name

Once upon a time, the sound of your first name enchanted you. It was music to your ears. You heard the lilt, the cadence, and the phonetic richness of each syllable of your name. This occurred because your name was spoken with love by your parents. So it carried the...

Violated, Hailed, Forgotten

Trigger warning : This poem was written after and is a reference to the famous Delhi, India rape case.  She fought, she scratched, her screams unheard Nails clawing flesh pain from pleasure They kept on with their greed Testing fiercely,...

My Beautiful Sister and The Museum

There is something so intimate and magical about whispering a secret.… “A sister is both your mirror — and your opposite.” — Elizabeth Fishel Moving My only sibling, a sister, Carrie Ann and I were moved from rural Amarillo Texas in 1975 to a suburb of the 3rd largest...

There Are Thrushes Everywhere

Sometimes life forces you to notice things. The woods surrounding my home are teeming with wildlife: deer, birds, squirrels and the occasional bear or coyote. They’ve become part of the landscape, blending into the snow-covered trees in the winter and the bubbling...

The power of self-reflection

If I had to choose only one tip to give someone who wants to develop themselves and become better in whatever he is doing it would be to practice a lot of self-reflection. The real man smiles in trouble, gathers strength from distress, and grows brave by...

Kaleidoscope Sky

Pink glows hover in early morning light Purple hues illuminate scattered clouds, Kaleidoscope colors beginning my day, Contemplating this beauty present now.  Each day colored along nature’s spectrum Always surprised by what colors come, Days sometimes break dark...

For Our Children

And, oh, the things we do for them Her tiny body rolls into position on the pink and white patterned mattress. She sighs through her perfect lips, and I exhale a breath of relief. She’s asleep. I get to go to work, clean, or play with her brother. So many...

Why You Should Never Pay Your Children To Wash The Car

A case against extrinsic motivation. I screwed up badly on this one. Now, you’re probably thinking that my 4-year-old daughter royally botched the job and damaged the family car, perhaps leaving a scratch here and a ding there.  If you’re prone to exaggeration,...

With Friends Like These

What a man with Down Syndrome taught me about being human. He’s standing by the keyboard, nervous, wearing a new vest and pressed white shirt. The room is festooned with streamers and balloons stamped with ‘Happy 30th’. Guests are filing in wearing their Sunday...

You Don’t Have Time for Regrets

The importance of taking advantage of now. “Forget regret, or life is yours to miss.” —Jonathan Larson This morning was not the best for me, not by a long shot. For some reason I sat at my desk pondering on the past and what I wish I would’ve done. My mind was...

Discover the Joy of Being Yourself

It’s simple to change your whole life for the better, but it’s not easy. The key to this type of personal transformation is cultivating your sense of lovingness. Interestingly enough, if you attain a high-enough state, you will even love the unlovable, alert to the...

Analyzed

For it is in your world not the externalthat analysis of the deep takes placebereavement and snipping corners the divine plays with the defeatedsoldiers marching through your field of poppies. Self-analysis played out in the nineteenth hundred’sa reason for...

We Are Life Expressing Itself

What if the entire universe is conscious and you are a shareholder of this consciousness? If this is true, as many spiritual traditions assert, then when you look at anything in the universe — a rock or a star — you are a manifestation of the universe looking at...

Awakening the Genius Within

I fell in love with Santa Fe the minute I arrived, instantly dazzled by its rich history, a meld of Anglo, Native American, and Hispanic cultures.  Everything was refreshingly different. Unlike most American cities, it had unique architecture, a predominance of...

Creating a Need for Competition at a Young Age

Throughout my entire childhood, I have always been unbelievably competitive. As someone who was in a school specifically designed for high-level athletes, the only thing that mattered was performance. While that may bring more pressure, it was always something that I...

Watching My Mother Die

Real death isn’t like the movies March 1987 “Cancer can be beaten” That’s what the light-up advertisement on the bus proclaimed — the one sporting a cheerful, yellow daffodil while exhorting us to support cancer research.  It was Monday morning. I was on my way...

How to Inspire Without Smoke and Mirrors

Have you ever seen those late night commercials with the beautifully perfect women, asking lonely people to call the 900 number to “chat”? They portray these ads as if you are calling the expensive phone number to chat with a perfectly hot, lonely bombshell, clad in...

Cries Within

Cries keep coming from deep within Cries caused by distant hurts and pains,The dissonant cries of a little boyTorn asunder in puzzling confusion. This little boy desperately seeking truthsTruths of who he is, and should become,Truths of what is right, and what is...

Why You Should Strive For Progress Not Perfection

We all want to be perfect in some ways. I think it started in a school where we have been taught not to make any mistakes to get the best marks. We have competed with each other to please our teachers and parents. Then it continued with the expectations. ...

Why You Should Do the Things That Scare You Most

Most people choose safety over uncertainty. But do safe choices always bring you happiness in life? If you hear a voice within you say you cannot paint, then by all means paint and that voice will be silenced. This quote by Vincent Van Gogh is my favourite for...

Why I Stopped Reading Self-Help Books

In the most Freudian tradition, it began with my Dad. The Dad who was absent? No. The Dad who was reckless? No. He’s not that kind of Dad. The Dad who for Christmas, wanted not the latest James Patterson thriller, but a hefty computer programming manual for his...

This is How You Become a Better Listener

“If we could only listen to each other on the stage like the animals in the forest do — as though our lives depended on it.” -Geraldine Page British writer Julian Treasure believes we are losing our listening. In his brilliant 2011 TED Talk he shares his concern for...

Shenandoah Longing

Thoughts of a distant Shenandoah cabin Tucked gently in its mountainside retreat, Overlooking blue ridge mountain vistas Calming presence in its hovering quietness. Walking winding verdant forested trails Discovering new hidden natural wonders, Yearning to explore...

What a shark attack taught me about living my best life.

“Did you hear about the shark attack?” ….. 3 hours earlier… As we pulled into the car park, I caught a glimpse of the shimmering blue sea. I couldn’t wait to get out of the car and take it all in. We were chasing a tip-off from fellow travellers who told us this...

Racist roots of rock and roll?

Or. How Rock and Roll almost saved the world. Rock and roll was born in the era of segregation. Its roots go much deeper. Traces of rock and roll can be found in the slaves who brought their rhythms from Africa, and from white pilgrims with primitive stringed...

We’re Waiting, Spring!

Please Come Soon, We Beg Of You! WE’RE WAITING, SPRING! Oh, for the love of snow! Won’t you please just go?! You’ve overstayed your welcome… This is not Siberia, but wait I’m starting to wonder. This winter has been one big blunder! Is this going to be the last...

Unexpected Ways You’re Giving Away Your Personal Power

How to Regain Control Recently, my boyfriend and I saw The Favorite (which I highly recommend). The movie is ironic in that the queen, supposedly the most powerful woman in England, is weak and spineless. She’s entirely dependent on her companion, Lady Sarah, to run...

What I’m Learning about God’s Rest

I’ve been on a journey learning how to honor the Sabbath and enter into God’s rest. Not that those are both the same thing, but they are related. True rest, God’s rest, is not the absence of work. Regarding the Sabbath, Jesus told the Pharisees, “My Father is always...

You Are For Me, Mine

Poetic Prose You are the morning star,One that guides the fading twilight…You are a god-sent angel,One that makes life bright… You are the early bird,One that surely gets the worm…You are the glowing crimson,Of the early sun-kissed morn… You are the cumulonimbus,Of my...

She Did Not Walk Out!

My sister would’ve never left her kids This is not the first time I’ve told this story. I know it by heart, by my broken heart. On September 9th, 1982, I waited for the mailman. One thing that made it hard, being a military wife, was the distance it put between me and...

Eliza Jane

Eliza Jane was a tiny thing She loved to dance, and loved to sing.  The house where she lived was old and broken.  Pointed fingers and rude words, often spoken.  She never had friends in her neighborhood.  Kids would tell her she’s poor and no...

What Does It Mean To Be Limitless?

How does one soar to the stars when we’re all stuck on the ground? When you hear the word limitless, or without limits, what comes to mind? It might be someone soaring through one success after another, shattering glass ceilings, and even gender-less...

Behind Every Person’s Decision

I guess if you have an original take on life, or something about you is original, you don’t have to study people who came before you. You don’t have to mimic anybody. You just have a gut feeling inside, an instinct that tells you what’s right for you, and you can’t do...

Finding love in all the wrong places

And how I found true love right smack dab in the middle. I was 21 when I first started using craigslist to go on dates. I had just returned from an 18 month LDS mission and I wanted to get married. Going to school among a lot of other members of the Church of Jesus...

Real Friends Never Leave, Even When They Do

Addressing the reality we often want to ignore. riendships are important to everyone. Those who are dearest to us also mean a lot to us. Without giving it much thought, our small (or large) community of comrades are among the most special of all relationships in our...

The “Here & Now” Theme in Literature and Life

To see a World in a Grain of Sand. And a Heaven in a Wild Flower. Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand. And Eternityin an hour~William Blake Irecently came across a reference to the “here and now” theme in a poignant short story by Jorge Luis Borges, whose...

Life as a Broken Tea Cup

When I was a child, I was quite lonely. I would spend hours in my bedroom playing with Barbie dolls or making my own tea parties with my favorite doll and stuffed bears. I know that image is probably a lot cuter in your mind than it was in reality, but that’s...

Guises

Pearl gray skies on the horizon No sunshine present in this day, Snowflakes might eventually fall Turning Earth white, matching our sky. Polar vortex coming this way Cold air swirling in its path, Nature’s presence being felt Changing guises as it comes. Weather is...

Anna Karenina and Her Justified Suicide

Whether you watched the film starring Keira Knightley or one of the Russian adaptations or read the very novel by Tolstoy, you surely came across the phrase about the main character which sounds like: “She was being torn between her love for two men: her new beloved...

Don’t Wait for an Opportunity to Strike

The art of having an active pursuit. It feels amazing to get stuff done. From small tasks to the biggest, most important project, nothing screams “WIN” louder than checking off an item on the to-do list. But what are we supposed to do next  We often overlook what...

This is What Happens When You Arrive in Dubai

“The Phoenix must burn to emerge.” — Janet Fitch “You staying or going?” you ask. “One day layover,” he says. “Me too,” you tell him. These are the first words you utter to the man you’ve been sitting beside for the last twelve hours. You get to talking and discover...

New Questions?

Is it freedom we really want? Are we genuinely seeking peace? What does tranquility mean to us? What powers do we feel within? Or are we trying to acquire more stuff? Seeking and grasping status recognition Wanting more money to buy new toys, Is there any end to these...

I Know Why You Can’t See Me

I’ve Compromised To Nothing I stood open before you;One could not have been more true.But you didn’t want to seeMe. To your tune, I danced and strippedOff my skin.I morphed into your dream; a nobody. I gave in and passed out.I compromised and finally died. Now I’m...

How to Quit Your Nine to Five

Most of us have dreams of quitting our jobs and living the rest of our lives doing whatever the hell we like without a care in the world.  If I had to guess I’d say that’s one of the main reasons people write on here, to make enough money to be able to live life...

Three Things I Learned From a 2,400-Year-Old Book

It taught me the way. At least this is what The Tao in the title roughly translates as — The Book of the Way. The Tao Te Ching (or Daodejing, in pinyin) is a classic Chinese Taoist text, thought to be written in the fourth century BC. It has been attributed to a...

Homeless Realities

Full moon fading towards the west New thoughts springing in the east, Earth progressing as it always does New sun glowing on our horizon. Distant car lights breaking darkness New day unfolds in its early stages, Will new wisdom come with light? What new ideas will...

Madam Oiselle

Beautiful Oiselle Walking out of the airport lounge, I saw this lady. A little anxious but waiting, She seemed to be in transit. I was in a trance. It Wasn’t just her Slow hair whips, beckoning eyes and shape That blew me away. OK, I’ll be on my way. But before I fly,...

Ten Choices I’m Glad I Made and Ten I Wish I Hadn’t

With my last birthday, I qualified for seniors’ night with the Buffalo Flats Social Club: dinner, entertainment, and occasional dancing for those 55 or older. I pretty much know everyone who attends. I’ve considered them “the wise ones” for the decade I’ve lived...

The Unexpected Visitor

Sitting in bed with a large pillow propped behind his neck and shoulders, Irene put her book of Rumi’s poetry down. His eyes were moist, her heart touched by the words whispering in his mind. “What is it like,” she asked herself aloud,” to see the world as it is?” Her...

How Badly Do You Want To Be Free?

“San Quentin, you’re a livin’ hell to me.” — Johnny Cash I recently watched Walk the Line again, a movie about the life of Johnny Cash up thru his marriage to June Carter. Here is a man who knew well the gritty side of life. The hard times of his childhood scarred him...

Innocent Forbidden Love

Elizabeth placed a gloved hand against the wall of the dining car, steadying herself as the brakes unlocked and the train rocked forward. Building speed, the train’s pace steadied, as did her balance. She pulled away from her walled anchor and unfastened large ivory...

Act on Behalf of Evolution

The more you evolve as a person, the more you contribute to the well-being of the species. And the more you devolve as a person, the more you assist in holding the evolution of humankind behind. These may strike you as odd statements. After all, since your birth, you,...

How Changing your Mind Changes your Life

“You lived with anger and physical yearnings that were insatiable, and you went about dismantling yourself on a daily basis, tendon and join, for the rest of your days all the time wearing the mask of a court jester.” James Lee Burke, Creole Belle That’s a description...

It’s Time You Changed Your Idea of Success

You’re simply making things harder than they have to be. What does success really mean? This seven-letter word often crosses my mind when I think about life. We see it all the time in the books we read and the shows we watch. Such a powerful but scary word. It’s...

The Day Evie Williams Inherited the Earth

Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth. Shivering violently, Evie did not know if her shivering was from the frigid temperatures or an oncoming bug, “If I had only gone to The Holy Evangel Mission earlier, tonight, I could have endured another hellfire...

Earth Messages

Bleak, dark clouds hovering in morning sky Hang ominously above this ground below, What winds are blowing with these clouds? Only time will tell what change is coming. Provocative messages from Mother Earth As she absorbs what beings have given Her, Heavy smoking...

You Will Never Get There

I don’t mean to offend you, but you will never get there. It’s not because you lack talent or genius or courage or drive. You may have these in abundance, but, still, you will never get there. The reason you will never get there — to that perfect place in time and...

Seasons

Spring was a new beginning,The days promised to grow longerAnd we promised to do betterThis time, unlike the last.But while Nature grew fresh and fragrantWe disregarded the lessonsThe previous seasons had taught usAnd made the same mistakesWe had resolved not to make....

The Best Win: Better You, Better Parent, Better World

Our world wins big time when you — yes you — are healthy and contributive. Especially as a parent. I want to encourage you to leverage the age we live in — this highly connected, no-return technological world where we’ve arrived — to your advantage when you parent...

The Impossible Scheme of the Ego

The ego’s impossible scheme is to be immortal and to be happy about it. Although this scheme to be both immortal and happy is doomed to failure from the beginning, the ego refuses to give them up, regardless of how much logic about the nature of reality you throw at...

Timeless Monsters Who Never Stop Chasing You

Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster. And if you gaze long enough into an abyss, the abyss will gaze back into you.― Friedrich Nietzsche The abyss is life and living it well. We are called to live, but how...

Finding Balance in an Unbalanced World

I won’t judge you if you won’t judge me.  The opening thought in Dan Pedersen’s December 3 letter (now deleted) is an accurate assessment of one of life’s challenges. “No matter how much you do, it will always feel like you’re not doing enough. Because we’re aware...

In the Light of Love

A Greeting In the turmoil of these current times Remember who you are In the midst of all your challenges  Remember how much you’re loved You might not feel it now Maybe you have forgotten But you’ll know deep down inside of you Love is...

Looking for and finding magic in her eyes

One small variable can change everything. A short conversation, close calls, near misses, and then … no telling what might happen. I can’t help but enjoy what I enjoy. I’m not asking for anything from anyone. The view is good enough. She was the girl of...

Questioning What The Will Of God Is For You

(And what customer service should not look like) The day I picked up my dry cleaning was much more pleasant than the cold, rainy day on which I’d dropped my two dresses onto the counter at Town & Country Cleaners. I handed the girl at the counter my claim slip,...

How Sudden Death Changed My Life

Reflections on figuring out what matters You never expect to receive a message like this after a long day.  Hey Frank, just wanted to let you know that Phyllis Armstrong passed away this week. I don’t have any real details other than she had gone to hospital and...

Women and the Power of Unity

Women Must Join Together and Speak Up, Step Up, and March Right Up to Those in Power The Women’s Marches that took place across the nation on January 19, 2019, are part of a tradition of women joining together to effect change. Women march to stand up for their own...

Face It, Nobody Likes A Smart Ass…

Except we do — we really, really do We all love a good smart ass… From the kid with the clever come-back to the stand-up comedienne who lampoons our least-loved politician. And among writers? They’re the ones with the great headlines, who use cheeky, provocative,...

I Might Actually Be Good At This

Today I had a eureka moment in my day job. For those that don’t know me, I am Deputy Head of a small independent school. We specialise in young people who can’t access mainstream school. They have a mix of learning needs and behaviour that challenges. Yes, it’s...

Some Colorful Fragments of Vibrant Life.

A Poetic Snapshot of Life. The burning sun scorched the land.Orphaned animals die parched of thirst.I am a sunflower.I love the sun. Power blackouts darken the hapless town.The wind blows off dazzling neon lights.I am a glow worm.My glow never dies. Men aim to reach...

WE PITCHED OUR TENT ON A CLIFF

Overlooking the ocean. My camping days are stored in the archives of long-ago times. However, such was the experience that it soured me for life. Of camping, that is. I was much younger. Adventurous and stupid. Obviously. I was on that Merry-go-Around called Marriage...

I’m That Mom

I’m that mom. You know, the one that doesn’t have it all together. I probably forgot to grab my coat on the way out of the house this morning. (It’s 35 degrees out.) I also failed to remember I needed to put gas in the car before dropping the kids off at school this...

What happens when your travel adventure comes to an end?

I winced as if I had been stabbed. The words uttered by the American volunteer I had become acquainted with pierced the warm Indonesian night air. ‘’I have begun researching jobs in my field, you know just to be prepared when I return home. I have also been checking...

It’s Only a Game

Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold; Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world, The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere.~W.B. Yeats You may have seen this sticker: Life is only a game. If it were the real thing, then you would have been given clear...

How to Escape The Blame Game and Reclaim Your Happiness

leave blame behind and take control We all have baggage. Yours isn’t the same as mine but it’s all heavy. It weighs us down in the present because we can’t face the future without looking back at what happened to us in the past. And then we place blame. “I can’t...

Thanks I Needed That!

There is no such thing as nothing “Have a nice weekend!” How many times do I hear that? I usually reply something like, “Yeah, I will. You too!”  Just recently I changed my response. “My week has no end. It is circular.”  I have been working weekends for...

How To Tell If You’re A Self-Help Junkie

And What Self-Help Advice You Should Ignore “I went to a bookstore and asked the saleswoman, “where’s the self-help section?” She said if she told me, it would defeat the purpose.” — George Carlin Self-help can be a great thing.  What could be better than...

How to deal with rejection

How do you deal with the feeling of being told: “you are not good enough?” It doesn’t matter if it is a job, relationship, education, or contract. The feeling that comes with someone closing the door in your face is the same. From worthlessness to hopelessness,...

What If There Was An All MOMS Shut Down?

efore dads all over the world go into panic mode and start having anxiety attacks, let me say, the chances that a MOMS shut down will happen are very slim.  That’s because MOMS will feel GUILTY that their dependents will suffer and NOT do it , unlike (rhymes...

Mother’s Kind

The kind of loving we should gravitate towards.  I tried to conjure up her image in my head. Her shoulder-length deep brown hair. Her beautiful twinkling pair of eyes. Her rather plump cheeks. Her pink lips, in the shape of a heart. Her smile, the kind that lighted up...

The You That Is Also You

Embracing the dichotomies of self How often do you hide the real you? The things you love, in secret, perhaps? The you that retires in safety just below the epidermis and only surfacing when it feels safe. The right company. The right crowd. This contrasting self...

Breaking Hearts

Hearts are breaking around the world Suffering as hunger and poverty grows, Conditions tragically breaking their spirits Taking their toll on millions each day. Oppression of many by a few dictators Thrives in far too many places, Sometimes violent with many deaths...

Drinking Should Have Killed Me

Drinking makes me bolder. A trait which I don’t possess when I’m sober. A confidence that is unashamed, the power of which I piece together the following morning through hazy memories and text messages from friends. Shyness entered my life around the same time as...

Preparing for Death

The information provided in this short series is morbid to many people, especially here in America. Death and all of its aspects are considered cold and unfeeling. In many ways, preparing for the inevitable is like walking the road less traveled. Here are four things...

Should I Be Offended By This?

When I worked in a nonprofit thrift store, I hired a Muslim woman to be my assistant manager. One Christmas when we were digging through donations to see what we could sell, she ran across some life-sized wooden nativity figures.  A lot of thrift store donations...

More To Come

Premonitions of new change coming Never sure what its nature might be, Knowing time evolves incessantly Revealing surprises with each day. Newness refreshes how we feel Letting go of what has passed, Regeneration of creative natures Stirring thoughts hidden long ago....

My Love, I Set You Free; Fly and Be Free.

Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted. Mack sipped his morning coffee in the solitude. The aches of loss and loneliness nipped at Mack. The sunlight hit his face from the window as the sun breached the horizon. Five years had passed since...

The Day My Daughter Stopped Singing

My daughter Vanessa has perfect pitch. I’m not biased when I say she sings like an angel. She has a wonderful voice. It’s always been that way. I remember when she was seven and obsessed with Frozen. She held concerts in our living room for me and her father and sang...

Maybe So. Maybe Not. We’ll see.

(The Parable of the Chinese Farmer) There is a Chinese Parable that goes something like this: ‘A farmer and his son had a beloved stallion who helped the family earn a living. One day, the horse ran away and their neighbors exclaimed, “Your horse ran...

My Sister

A Poem As I passed to the end of the vistaI was stopped thinking of how often I miss herAt the view of this wonderful sceneryI realized there is nothing compared to our bond, sweet sister Oh, we had so many magical moments!Being young together, crying over each...

Are You Interested or Committed?

I was listening to a great interview with John Assaraf, where he was talking about his first mentor. Before he took him on, the mentor wanted to know if John was interested in, or committed to, reaching his goals. I’m fascinated by people who make a life-changing...

I Hate the Midwest and it is Amazing for Personal Growth

Absorb what is useful, Discard what is not, Add what is uniquely your own. — Bruce Lee Doing that right now… The Midwest has my family by the metaphorical balls again. Hand firmly placed around intimate parts poised with the threat of a clenched fist. If that’s...

The Man Who Never Was

My name is Pliny, and I am an old man dying in a large bed. In a few days or even tomorrow, I will no longer be here. One advantage of this precarious situation is that I can now speak about forbidden things. No longer intimidated by the threat of death, I wish to...

Always Becoming

New thoughts arise in every moment Part of this journey in our becoming, Never finished, always evolving Dynamism inherent in who we are. Dreams floating from us in the night Phantom warriors in our subconscious, Sometimes reminders from our pasts At others, new...

If Only

I thought of you todaynot fleeting snapshots,but long reflections. Clear pictures in my memory,stored in baggiesto keep them safe. Your dwindling voice fadeslike a sunset,barely there. I thought of you todayas I wiped away tears,that come unannounced. The day you...

I’m Grateful for My Catlike Reflexes!

Narrowly Escaping a Wreck on My Drive to Work Other than the lighter traffic, this morning’s drive to work was typical. At first.  Sometimes Traffic is Better Cars move slower in traffic. Unless you’re right on the bumper of the person in front of you, the...

It’s Not All About You

People tend to do whatever they want. Thank goodness for laws. The result of actions can play a big or small part in society. Some people may use the following phrases to describe their feelings about other peoples actions. “ I don’t care what they do behind closed...

This is Why It’s Not Too Late for You

“It is never too late to be what you might have been.” — George Eliot During my second year of drama school my classmates and I tackled the works of Shakespeare, Beckett, Williams, and Ibsen. Each storyteller shared a unique vision of the world, transporting me from a...

As a Young Fawn, I

As a young fawn, I with awkward step found an opening in the wood; unfolding eyes beheld and touched what I could little understand — that though I’d freely come to see, ’twas his hand that was drawing me.  I wished not that our eyes...

Speak. Listen. Lead.

Question: What is the most important leadership skill? Answer: Knowing how to communicate. Why? Because leading is about relationships. Question: What is most talked about in making or breaking any relationship?” Answer: Knowing, or not knowing, how to communicate....

So Gray, Are My Days…

When it’s gray, So long seems the day. The sun is hidden,  And the dreary cold Comes unbidden The rain spruces up our nature,  But me, it bruises up. Not my skin,  But my feelings which are akin. Many a time,  I wonder if indeed I am naive? The...

A Dad to be Remembered

When my dad first died, I became upset because the world kept going. Everyone did their own thing without any respect to the fact that a good man passed away. Never again would anyone hear his voice. My niece and I wrote up pieces dealing with how we felt about his...

Tales Of An Unfortunate Tattoo

I didn’t stop to think it might be a bad idea. My husband, Micah, and I were getting along at the time, not to mention the amount of substance abuse we were engaging in. I hadn’t yet been diagnosed with bipolar disorder, so I didn’t realize I was in the middle of a...

The Problem Solving Strategy

Life Skills… “Analysis is not the only way to resolve inner conflicts.Life itself still remains a very effective therapist.”  — Anonymous A hospital receptionist smelled smoke.  Searching for the source, she eventually discovered a soldering iron mistakenly left...

I Have Value And I Matter

You! Yes, you Everyone is important, including me.  I have important things to do and accomplish.  My ideas and opinions are important.  I bring value to those around me with my thoughts, words, and actions. I feel more important and valuable...

4 Parents-1 Daughter

My Daughter’s Modern Family During the Autumn of 2009, on a rainy, chilly day, my daughter and I sat in silence watching the rivers of water trickle down the window panes. We lived in the country, just outside of a small town, at the time. She was just 17-years-old...

Things I’ve Learned in the Year Since My Son’s Death

Grief has taught me some good lessons. It’s been about a year since my oldest son, Nick, passed away. It’s been a year of grief and healing, despair and hope. Sometimes all of them at once. I’ve changed. The loss of one of my children literally changed me into a...

Are You Willing To Do Anything To Change Your Life?

If so, start with this It’s no secret the life we’re living right now is the result of our thoughts and actions. Sure, there are some things that seem like they fall out of the sky directly on top of our heads. But if we’re honest about it, we can see how past...

Improvement Should Be Your Next Big Thing

How to get rid of those rotten habits once and for all. Most of the time, we do things without thinking twice about them. Because of a certain routine, our actions are left without much explanation. We do it because it’s what we’re used to. Scroll through Twitter....

Short Story: Power Grid

Gabby ran to the nearest safe spot she could find. The air smelled of gas, dead bodies, and trash. It has only been 3 days since the power grid went out. No answers on who or what caused it. Gabby was at home at when the power went out. Her parents took her to a...

Can People Be As Smart As Seeds?

Seeds are wondrous little packets of DNA, but they are much more than that. They contain nutrients, proteins, cells for storage, structures for dispersal, and attractive features that help other living beings spread them far and wide. But seeds are also notable for...

How Finally Listening to my Girlfriend Changed My Life

“I like to listen. I have learned a great deal from listening carefully. Most people never listen.” Ernest Hemingway Women always say “Men don’t listen” and they are correct. We do not listen especially when people are trying to help us. We think we know best and are...

When Buffed Met Saggy…

How The Hell Does That Happen? So I bet you’re wondering how in the world did “Buffed Meet Saggy”? I might as well state the obvious, (or for some of you who aren’t that familiar with me), the not so obvious. I am like a walking conundrum. A polarizing dilemma, if you...

Why You Should Stop Trying to Do Everything

Breaking free from distractions to focus on what moves you. “If you are trying to do everything, you will fail at everything.” —Matt D’Avella With all of the fancy new gadgets coming out every other day, there exists a pull to do multiple things at once. New features...

Why Am I Here?

Bonsai thriving amidst cold winter airBright sun illuminates lively new scenes,Commuters all moving at hurried pacesHomeless huddled in tattered blankets. Contrasts in our current urban dramaAlways seen as it is presently lived,Musicians play at subway...

Why You Should Read Your Favorite Books Again

And the Huge Impact it Has on Your Life “Why do you keep all these books on the shelves?” someone asked as I was showing them around our house. We stopped in the den where I have a few full bookshelves. They vary in size, shape, color, and topic, but each one is...

It’s a Big Enough Pizza For Us All

You will get your perfect slice! I believe the Universe is big enough to hold us all. It can support all of our dreams. We all have different dreams, motivations and goals. We all have different styles of writing too. That’s the way it’s supposed to be.I mean who...

How to End Your Worries, Anxieties, and Fears

A cure to your internal pain You worry about your relationships, your financial situation, your life and you worry about your loved ones. You feel anxious about taking a decision: “Maybe I’m not the best fit for this”. You fear the outcome of an event. You fear...

Without Robbing Your Dignity, May I Help You?

While waiting for my doppio espresso, I watched as a young woman struggled to put her drink into a coffee sleeve. Something you and I might take for granted. For many disabled people, the struggle for independence is strong. The desire to be seen as normal and...

What I Have Is Enough

If you know enough is enough, you’ll always have enough I am content with my life as it is now.  I think about the riches I already possess instead of striving to acquire more. I focus on gratitude.  I find creative ways to express my thanks, so I...

Bleu de France.

A short story about second chances The business of attending the funeral of a parent was no trivial matter. He was not going. In spite of having dressed the part: suit, tie, sapphire shirt, dress shoes, and cufflinks. He stood waiting for the taxi outside the hotel...

Waiting for her.

and Writing Poetry……. Golden chrysanthemums littered the frozen ground, Fading grasslands stretched towards the horizon. Rain sifted through the apple trees. A mournful cuckoo lamented the dying spring. I leaned over the ornate balustrade, A thousand memories filled...

Poised at the Crossroads of Parenting & Culture

Parenting is hard. But take heart. Here are 5 principles to help you bring your best self to the job and show how you can impact the world as you do. Here you are, with little people who see you as Mommy. Or Daddy. And you’re suddenly that person who’s supposed to be...

7 Millennial Marketing Myths Busted

Throw everything you thought you knew about marketing to millennials out the window. Millennials have caused quite the controversy in recent years, whether it’s because we’ve killed another industry or we spend too much money on avocado toast. In 400 BC, Socrates...

The unslakeable mendicants we are

How complacency in life helps you to live a better life… Yeah, buddies, I am speaking of you and me. We are all beggars in our own ways. Opulence or indigence is purportedly not the marker for our mendicancy and the incessant banging on the doors high above. Beggars...

How to Rebel Against Reality

What we call reality is not real. Science agrees with Democritus’s wildly accurate conjecture that reality is atoms floating in empty space. And it goes even further in establishing the insubstantiality of things. For instance, atoms are not small blocks of...

Your Worth is Not Defined By the Money You Earn

I have felt it often and I know of many mothers who feel it a lot of times. Especially if you are not an “earning member”. Feeling that you are not worthy because you do not have a steady income.  You see others around you bringing in money and wonder if you are...

Paint

Paint me a deeper shade of blue, I am not enough of the night sky I wish to twinkle. Paint me the globe burning of sun orange and yellowexcitement and Spring, for I need the birth of new thingswithin. Paint me a delicate pink one that adores and smells of...

Too Much for a Funeral?

Whether it is a small family-owned and run funeral home or it is a large corporation that owns hundreds or thousands of funeral homes and cemeteries, businesses operate in order to make a profit. However, there is a huge difference between a locally owned and operated...

Searching for Childhood as an Adult

As a child, I had a hard time because I wanted to be older, and now I have a hard time because I don’t want to grow up. I took pride in being the “mature one.” The child with the highest aptitude for sitting at the adult table. Silent and observing. I was pretending...

Don’t Get Used To It

Learning the art of appreciation. Where do I begin? It’s always a bit tricky when it comes to relationships. It’s not always easy. We all know that. One of the strangest things that happened when I was in high school is that no matter how inexperienced I was in...

Saying Goodbye!

In my previous article to this, I told a fun memory I had of my dad when I was a teenager. Remembering Life  Before my dad died in June of 2017, I went to visit my parents. I struggled with what I saw because he didn’t look the same. He had gone downhill while I...

Sticker Shock at Funeral Homes

On the worst day of your life, the last thing you or your family should have to deal with is sticker shock. A quick perusal of this link will show a wide variety of prices that have to be considered. The average price of a funeral in the USA is currently between...

Wisdom Power

Wisdom derived from what we see Absorbing it daily as we live, Experiences rapidly accumulate Teachable moments every one. What power comes from all of this? Knowledge for our minds to hold, Interpreting what it really means Discerning values that we feel. Power when...

Money is the root of evil

Money is the root of evil This piece of paper rules our lives Do we have enough to live? Do we have enough to give? Some have money to burn Spending cash on frivolities Money for new gold watches Money for pet haircuts and homes People who work all week To go to the...

A Phoenix of Hope

To be reborn in your fireThat arises from your heartFrom the golden or the silver skiesYou came descending here With your colors that are fadingWithout regrets, without questionsBeyond shadow, beyond doubtTime for a new resurrection You can leave it all thereafterAs...

If you are a boss you need to learn how to lead

Simply bossing people around is not good enough Let’s get things straight. A lot of bosses are terrible leaders. And it’s not because they are stupid or bad people in general. It’s because they don’t know how to lead. Take look at a typical boss. He’s most likely a...

Choices We Make

Feeling cool breezes in early morn Light breaking across far horizon, Beings all around beginning to stir Peaceful moments in quite stillness. Contemplating nature’s gifts Gifts to embrace and enjoy, Always present for us to see If we let awareness behold them. So...

Who Do You Want Teaching Your Child?

This is a story I saw on Instagram, quoted verbatim: I made the mistake of downloading 1… ONE ABC learning game on my phone for my 2 year old daughter. smh Three weeks later I finally had enough (not that I had much of a choice, she broke my phone out of frustration...

A Lesson In Gratitude

Dodging the curveball I was given an unexpected and totally jacked up lesson in gratitude. I know I should be grateful for all that I’ve been given. I have a great husband and a beautiful grandbaby, I have a fantastic job and I get to write out all the stories in my...

Ten Things About Funerals

While every state is different, I wish these were some things that EVERY adult knew about funerals. Having previously been in the cemetery/funeral industry for almost 8 years, I can speak to the practices of private firms as well as cemeteries and funeral homes that...

I Accidentally Fell For This Gender Stereotype

And it was the best thing this dad of two daughters could foresee. I did not see it coming. “If I had to choose between beauty and brains, I will choose brains any day.” — casual words of a young executive to my friend. They were talking about finding life partners....

How To Inspire, Impress And Energize Everyone You Meet

Stand Out, Be Noticed, Captivate People “Charisma is a sparkle in people that money can’t buy. It’s an invisible energy with visible effects.” — Marianne Williamson Have you ever longed to be the life of the party?  Wouldn’t it be nice to navigate business and...

Next Moments

Heavy fog enveloping my views Is it metaphor for what comes next? Future usually does seem quite hazy Without completely being obscured. Never exactly sure what is coming Discerning hints in present moments, Thinking it will be of keen interest As most of our journeys...

Terrifying + Exciting

Creativity is both. “The triumphs, anxiety, joy, pain, wrapped together. They don’t live without one another. It was hard. And it was good. Focus on the PROCESS of becoming great at what you do and everything else will fall into place.” @Ayodeji Awosika Creating...

Either You Make The Choice Or It Is Made For You

It was 1978, Freddie Roach a promising lightweight pugilist traveled to Las Vegas with his father in search of a personal coach who could help him in elevating his game and prepare him for next level of fierce competition in professional boxing. Eddie Futch, one of...

Here’s How To 10X Your Personal Growth

Get More Aware Of Yourself… Most of us don’t even know the depth of our problems. 60–70% times I’m mistaken in doing so. It’s my father or my journal that uncovers the whole situation for me most of the times. I never knew that I was so reactive. I never knew that...

Santorini, Greece. I Love You.

I had the most amazing opportunity to take a seven-night Greek Isles cruise after dreaming about going to Greece for almost ten years. It was hopefully the first of many times I’ll be able to travel to one of the few places on Earth that I felt at home. Truly, at...

Coffee, Cake and Lifeisms!

In the corner of a popular coffee shop sat a lady with short brown hair and a laptop. Nursing a milky cup of tea and a thoughtful frown, she sat quietly while life went on around her. A young lady with long, sleek black hair and effortless but yet perfect makeup...

You Need More Introverts In Your Life

Here’s why. There are some common assumptions about introverts that have been driving me crazy lately. It’s not that I have anything against the people making them. But out of all the bullet points they conjure, many are untrue and more are left out. You see, I...

Ode to January

A Sonnet January, you inspire me to write How I love the way you anticipate Invading my mind through the dark days and long nights Always dreaming about new beginnings… Let me compare your steadfast dark times With a frosty fiery sleepy head Your...

Where Is Winter?

This year is passing without winter here No snow falling or prolonged cold days, Temperatures change from cold to warm Never real feeling of a cold winter season. Christmas came without any winter feel Autumn just extended itself into December, Trees expected the...

Don’t Use ‘Just Words’ – Use Encouraging Words

I always write with music playing in the background and this morning was no different, except when it hit cowboy poet Baxter Black with his spoken word poem “Just Words.” Like a bolt of lightning, I knew what I would write about today. I would write about how we all...

Naked And Alone

Hermann Schultz, the young guard, peered through the bars and saw the shadows of the evening gather around the skinny, naked man huddled in the corner of the cell. The shadows accentuated his sad gray eyes and rivulets of sorrow glistened in his gray beard. The...

I’m A Little Teapot

I’m a little teapot short and stout Here is my handle, here is my spout When I get all steamed up, then I shout, “Just tip me over, pour me out!” That was a song I sang to all of my children while they grew up. There were others, as well, but this is the one I want to...

Sometimes I think he only wants me for the money

That’s a result of abuse I’ve been abused. not just a little bit, but a lot. In many ways. A major part of my life. So I’m thinking. Always. I’m thinking that I’m being abused because I have been abused. It’s hard to separate that thought from other things. Because I...

Mundaneness

Pleasure experiencing mundaneness Thriving plants with flower blooms, Rising suns lighting new days skies Coolness felt in early morning air. Children’s laughter when at play Smiling faces with people passing, Mountains climbing to highest peaks Ocean waves lapping...

How I Gained a New Perspective

The busyness of the holidays are past and the decorations are packed away for another year. Recalling the joy and chaos of having all five young grandchildren in the house bring a smile, but also a twinge of sadness as I wonder when they will all be together again....

My Beautiful Lover.

Sedoka poetry. Sedoka is a Japanese poetic form which is written in a question and answer form. What is that golden hazeSifting through the twilight zephyrsFading through the silvery mist? That is not golden haze,But the refulgent tressesOf My beautiful lover. What...

The World is Looking for Leaders

Leadership is the sun coming up on the horizon sprinkling the world with beauty and energy. Management is the rainy, grey day that gives you the feeling of hopelessness. Working in corporate America can be very frustrating. The frustration doesn’t come from the work...

The Healing Powers Of Cranberry Peppermint Candles

Walking through the mall with my 12-year-old daughter was quite surreal. The mall itself seemed frozen in time, a replica of something you would see in the 80's. The stores were flashbacks from when I was a preteen: Dillard’s, Macy’s and even those Auntie Anne’s...

Martial Arts… Here We Come

When my husband and I were younger, Mark decided to take Tae Keon Do for exercising purposes. I was all for it. It was a desire he’d had for years. We discussed sending our children (at that point they weren’t even teens yet) with him. We figured this would help them...

How to Respond to Bad Reviews

ust one negative review has the power to damage your company’s reputation and therefore revenue. In fact, it takes roughly 40 positive reviews to undo the damage of just one negative review. On average, a dissatisfied customer will tell up to 15 people about their...

An Orgasm is Not What Girls Fake Most Often

Her name is Ann, and she’s 4. This girl is little, amiable and not very smart, but her behavior already resembles that of some adult women. She’s always active. She’s always playful. She always smiles. That’s the way other people see her. But once the door of her room...

Would You Like the Senior Discount?

With sincerity written all over his face, the young man standing behind the glass said, “Would you like the Senior Discount?” I am sure he wasn’t speaking to me, since, I was standing behind my wife when he mistakingly said that. Confession time — I chuckled when I...

Why New Year Is in the Dead of Winter

It’s fascinating to me that our New Year here in the West occurs in the dead of Winter. I know other cultures’ New Year occurs at different times of the year, and that’s great. I’m sure God is speaking to all cultures with the timing of their New Year celebration, but...

Say It: I LOVE YOU

Shout it at the top of your lungs. Say it like it’s your last day on Earth. When I was a child, I used to say I love you a lot. To a lot of people. Family and friends. Acquaintances of my parents who gave me candies or chocolates. I just said it. I love you I love you...

Mimslyn Inn

Fascination with orange dancing flames In old brick fireplace of this aged inn, What wisdom might these flames reveal In mesmerizing presence gazing at me. Grand inn resplendent in past ages traditions Having baby grand piano and poinsettias too, Lobby bar and...

Time to clean out your word closet

At the turn of each calendar year, I love to purge files, sort housewares, clean out closets and send my usable discards to the thrift store (while hoping I don’t buy them back later). As I do so, I’m also thinking it’s a good time to inventory some words and phrases...

Remembering Life

As I grew up, I never realized how important my parents were. My dad was the center of our life, the one who kept our family together. He was the one everyone enjoyed being around.  He didn’t speak much at all. When he did, everyone normally listened. Of course,...

Ten Quirky Things

My original thought when challenged to do this was that there is NOTHING quirky about me. I am, well, I am just me! After all, if the rest of the world was just like me, then it would be a boring place. While speaking openly about my hesitations, my lovely wife,...

While 2018 is Fresh on the Mind – My Perspective

With Great Change Comes Great Opportunity Reading all the “Top Stories of 2018” and “New Year’s Resolutions” and “My ‘Word’ for 2019” articles has left me both reflective and bemused. I wasn’t going to write one of those “What I Learned Writing on Medium” or “My Year...

How to Become an Actual, Real Life Superhero

YOU are a superhero, even if you don’t know it yet. “Anyone can wear the mask” — Miles Morales, Spiderman: Into the Spiderverse “We can be heroes” — David Bowie Every Time You Help Others, You Are A Superhero “That person who helps others simply because it should...

Why Helicopter Parents Have Got It Wrong

My husband used to teach in a low-income high school riddled with crime, homelessness and poverty. He loved his job. When he figured out that one of his students couldn’t read because he couldn’t see the words, my husband spoke with a counselor and together they made...

How to Grow Up

To My 18-Year-Old Self Dear younger me, Don’t heavily rely on people to help you. I’m not talking about asking for help when you need it. This is more like sitting on your butt, waiting on someone to come and scoop you up, as if you were incapable of getting up on...

Starting Over

In all honesty,I don’t know what to donow that you are gone. I am starting life over. Struggling with the darkI am a child whose innocence is stolenstumbling composurerocks pebbles thrown in ponds staring blankly at the ripples a desperate light bulb clingingto...

Time Zones Can Throw Off Birthdays

For 13 months, from July 2010 through July 2011, my family lived in France. Our daughter Ella turned 14 while we were in Paris. December 18, 2010 — Sabbatical Blog I tried to explain to Ella this morning that as long as we are in France, December 18 isn’t really...

Earth’s Changes

Time flowing on its natural course Daily coming and going on its own, Nothing special in this flow Continuing along like ages past. Constructions of the human mind Created time as we know it now, Earth knows not of human time Nature continuing as it always has. No...

My Best Moments in Life

Surveying the tightly gathered group of people, I should have been grateful. But I wasn’t. A strange sense filled the air, and looking into the eyes of each person, it seemed as though I could read their thoughts. But they could not read mine. Gifts of various kinds...

What Is the Good Life?

You are consciousness navigating through empty space. When you think about it, Democritus, the ancient pre-Socratic philosopher, who flourished in Abdera, Thrace about 460 BC was right. The first human being to formulate the atomic theory proposed…  Nothing...

Present Love

Freeing myself of past burdens Separation from what has been, Knowing it is all a part of me But that was then, this is now. Freedom in renewing myself Being where my life has come, Past regrets have been dissolved Like evaporating ethers in the air. Seeing beauty...

On Loneliness and Relationships

And why the latter can never be a cure to the former. I lay in bed, with my partner less than 6 inches away from me, I felt this profound loneliness. I’ve felt this way many times. With my current partner and with others who came before. Loneliness, as it turns...

Greet the New Year with Great Expectations

I always close out a year with a run right before midnight and then a run right after midnight with a kiss for my forever girlfriend in between right at midnight if I can wake her up. It seems like a crazy thing to do but it sure beats the way I used to ring in the...

All the Best Things in 2018 Had One Thing in Common

Drum rollllll… He who is not happy with a little will not be happy with a lot — Lao Tzu I was reminiscing about my last year. For the most part, 2018 was insanely uncertain. It was aconfusing challenging stressfulanxioussad sometimes overwhelmingly...

The kind leader. Do I have to be?

My mantra: Create. Sweat. Give. Listen. Be kind. I think of a mantra as something very personal, like the essence of a personal life philosophy. It was a little surprising when I honed mine at work writing for our e-newsletter to try and put a face on our mission....

Life Lessons Learned with Food

As I awoke this New Year’s morning, my first thoughts turned to food and the traditional Southern New Year’s Day lunch or dinner of pork, collard greens, black-eyed peas, and cornbread. Why you might ask, would one immediately think of food on the first day of the new...

How Can I Help?

In 2019, we can expect more chaos because the chaos in the world is accelerating at an alarming rate. This is a wakeup call for all of us. Each in our own way can contribute to bringing about new possibilities. The way we contribute, or the size of our contribution,...

Man Is the Greatest Animal.

A collection of Poetic Pleiades. A pleiade is a structured poetry form in which only one word is allowed in title followed by single seven line stanzas. Tigers Image Credits: Jessica Weiler The men who become “Tigers” in strip-tease lounges, Throwing...

Marley & Me-Why I Have an Alter Ego

There are actually 3 names I carry within me, and although it may make me sound like a schizophrenic, I can assure you, I am not. (I don’t think, anyhow).  I was named Christina Marlene when I was born-both names came from Aunts. Christina is my mother’s sister,...

Lessons From My Three Weddings

I was twenty when I got married for the first time. Derek was my high school sweetheart and savior. I was still seventeen when we started living together straight from the apartment I shared with my mother. She unceremoniously kicked me out one July morning, and when...

You Are:

You Are: The one love of my life for 29 years We’ve been through so many things Fun times, laughter, hard times, tears Love comes from you… my heart still sings We are one facing other frontiers You Are: The one who holds the sky for me Making me feel like a jewel...

Pretend You’re Good at It

Nearly every year before the holidays I look for something light and amusing to read while the hectic planning, shopping, baking and socializing begins. This year, I read Furiously Happy,by Jenny Lawson, a somewhat irreverent (the book, not Jenny) read about life from...

Discontent

Aliveness felt in morning spirits Contemplations of what is here, No voices in this stillness now Silence with its peaceful calm. Tree shadows distantly visible Vague outlines in stark darkness, Hooting owls break the silence Nature’s presence alone with me....

The Myth Of The “Work Friend.”

Fourteen years ago, when I began working at a privately-owned marketing agency that, as my husband pointed out, looked like a “sperm bank” from the outside, my immediate goal was to find another gig and get the hell out of Dodge. For the first time in years, I would...

Why I really enjoy being single

‘’I want to be married by the time I am 30!'’ exclaimed my friend. Her soft golden curls framed her pretty face and highlighted the steely look in her eye. I knew this was a goal rather than an arbitrary statement. My eyes slowly surveyed the room. Each of my...

What High School Taught Me About Life

And What I Wish I’d Known Then From a small city in North Carolina, I was a simple kid trying, like the rest of my classmates, to finish high school. I was a varsity basketball player, somewhat popular, mainly because of sports. But being a twin had something to...

Why do I remember Kristine?

Last evening I watched a television show that featured a small child of about 11 or 12 who was dying from cancer but was facing his impending death with both humor and courage, attributes not often not seen in adults in the same situation. When I retired for the...

Acceptance

Silence speaks the loudest violin concerto in the background hummingtiny winged creatures suck sugar and fly heart strings that long to be united. The mechanics of separation have led you to distant shores where I can only hope in hand’s of perfection ...

TWO OLD FEISTY BROADS

A song from my upcoming Musical This is a song I am writing for my upcoming Broadway Musical. I thought I'd share it with you (without the vocals of course). These fun lyrics will be put to the tune of the Stevie Wonder classic ‘For Once in My Life’. It will be...

Creation’s Joy

Joy reverberates in this richness of life Creation’s masterpieces painted over time, Awed by its intensity in everything we see, Nature’s bounteous gifts, our good fortune. Continual happiness from its creation Wonders to be discovered in all times, Feeling abundant...

What Will It Take For Your Heart To Rest?

What will it take for your heart to rest? Have you ever really tried your best? Why must you travel down this unhappy path? Why is it upon your loved ones that your release your wrath? Why must you make it so hard to love you? Or is that you truly hate me?! I seek...

The Border

You were sitting on your favorite chair when you discovered the news. A friend of yours told you what’d happened there. The border. It was just a matter of time until the assault started to crush the sacred land again, everyone knew that. Schools, hospitals,...

The Devolving of Truth

hat is truth? Is there any such thing as absolute truth? What about moral truth? Is truth merely what each individual chooses it to be? America is at a crossroads. I would posit that the crossroads have almost converged to the point where both roads are almost...

Use Your Superpowers for Good

In the 1960’s, I was Batman.  That’s me on the right in the front row (you can usually spot me in pictures because of the crazy tuft of hair dropping down the center of my forehead).  Like my cape?  I sure did.  My best friend, Stevie, there on the...

Why Your Experiences Mean So Much

We all go through things, although we experience them in different ways. Some encounters are tougher than others. One page of our lives turns to the next. And the scene changes. After it’s all said and done, it’s easy to become private about our stories — the things...

Real Men Do Cry

On the early morning of Nov 15th, 1997, something surreal happened. I was seated next to him on my first airline flight — ever.  From North of India, I was rushing home to South.  The last 15 hours had been a blur. That was my first moment alone surrounded...

“When I got the invite, I knew it was too late”.

I love country music. Yesterday, I was singing along to Thomas Rhett’s Marry Me. If you don’t know it, the general gist is, he’s had a crush on a girl since high school and he’s upset because she’s marrying someone else. ♫ “Yeah, she wants to get married, but she...

Writing Resolutions For the New Year

Please borrow them if you like At the end of the year, I like to make resolutions for the year ahead. I’ve read a lot about resolutions not being worth much. But I created my own simple system to make them work and I have been very successful. My system works because...

Rejoice of Children’s Laughter

A Prose Joy of children’s laughterThe promise of young lifeI listen with closed eyesMy heart is filled with love I see a river with crystal clear waterIt meanders and sparklesInviting me to travelThe Life light I walk through the forest of intent joyWhere...

Would da. Should da. Could da. Year-end wishes.

Near the end of each year, the stock market reminds me of recent “opportunities.” Until I get used to making errors and correcting them. In this instance it is a problem of accepting. The stock market “gave” me the opportunity —  6 times in 2 years — to sell a stock...

Emotions

Gentle waves roll through my heart Waves of emotion from what I see, Emotions felt and then expressed Give life to feelings held within. Once expressed to be released Not to be long simmering within, Emotions should be slight ripples Not powerful cresting ocean waves....

Believe In Thyself And All Things Will Be Possible.

If you ask any great minds today or centuries ago, they would all tell you the same thing as I’m about to tell you. Before you do or try anything, you must believe in yourself; wholeheartedly with all your will and power. If not, the chances of failure are almost...

Boldly Invest in Your Success

“Find out who you are. And do it on purpose.” ~Dolly Parton As I sit here tonight thinking about my life up until this point, I realize that I’ve never truly totally invested in me.  My dreams. My hopes. My career. Myself. And my life is evidence of this...

Broken… Vanishing…

Why Women Leave A “Good” Relationship Not every relationship fails for the obvious, usual reasons.  Some relationships appear to be fine. They don’t look broken — at least, not from the outside. There are none of the usual warning signs: no infidelity, no...

The Day I Got Revenge on My Grandmonster

You know, sometimes I am grateful for the lessons and memories of my past. I can thank those people who abused me in my life, because they taught me the value of strength, creativity, resiliency and coping mechanisms.  In some cases, the monsters of my past have...

Getting Tired of Being Somewhere

30th Day in Spain How long does it take to get used to something? If you’re starting a new habit, how long does it take to get used to eating chard or exercising every day? For me, none. I love chard and exercise. Getting Used to Being Somewhere Yesterday I wrote...

Connections

Like life to death, connections follow us through every strand and fiber of our being; some would say weaving us into a tapestry of universal connection that we cannot understand; our logic fails to grasp concepts beyond space and time. Our birth connected to mother...

THE EYES HAVE IT

“… human eyes are the windows to the truth inside a person.” — Psychology Today I was curious about this subject of eyes today because I saw an elderly woman at the grocery store. She had the brightest most playful piercing eyes. Although her face was covered in...

As he lay in the Twilight between life and death

A Viator Poem As he lay in the twilight between life and death,evanescent images torment his delirious mind.He shuts his eyes not wanting to see any more,while hiding behind the pain within his gaping wounds. A vagrant landmine exploded somewhere.As he lay in the...

How to Make Your Happiness Grow

“Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.” ― Dalai Lama XIV Do you want to be happy? Do you want your happiness to actually GROW instead of staying at the level it is right now? What would it mean to you to have more happiness,...

Simple Ways To Enjoy An Awesome Christmas

Let life be easy I have been reading lots of Christmas stories lately. On Medium, Facebook and through email. Some are happy and some are really bitter. Now, I’ve had my share of difficulties in life, but I really love Christmas. I love the excitement, the wrapping...

How to Filter Advice from Anyone

The integrity of your work depends on it. We can all use advice. People from the smallest to the greatest need pointers here and there. To get anywhere in life, this is a necessity. And only a narcissistic maniac would say otherwise. In this vast arena of...

Breaking Ties To Set Myself Free

A Scary, solo Flight Many offer words of advice, but sometimes someone says something that just knocks you over! “Friends and family spoil the professionalism.” Nupoor Raj  Maybe that is the best thing to date that I have heard spoken to me. Maybe it has been...

Reaching Out

Tranquil feelings flow in my heartLove for beings within my sphere,Thoughts of myriad others tooCompassion felt for who they are. Present with a homeless womanWondering why she is all alone,Knowing suffering she must feelWhat brutal pains she daily bares. Compassion...

You Can Be as Happy as You Want to Be

How I Found This to Be True You Are What You Think You will morph into your the things you spend your time thinking about. We don’t always pay attention to this, but it is a fact. (I’ll tell you how I learned this in a sec). Start thinking positive. Think...

The Race to the Top

Whatever That Means Regardless of the goal, the message is everywhere. You see it in or on just about everything. There is a race going on. People are competing against each other to climb to what’s known to be “the top”, where everything they could ever dream of...

In A New World…

When the Earths an oasisThe whole world is clean.All remaining peoplesHave made it pristine. When Gaia gives food freelySupplying plenty to eat.The highest of mountainsFlows over with wheat. When Her beasts become tameThey are gentle and calm.What was once...

Winter’s Rest

Trees now mostly bare of leaves Winter’s winds blowing strong, Lighter air, easier to breathe, Darkness longer in each day. Feel the earth is taking a rest Letting dormant moments flow, Withered flowers conserving strength Time for us beings to do the same. Letting go...

Make This Christmas Merry?

It’s Christmas time.  Let the celebration continue.  Join me in praising God in the Highest for His wonderful gift to humankind. Jesus, our Savior, was born. I am grateful for God’s love and grace to my wife and me. Photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash First...

“Different is better than better”

It’s not enough to be good enough. “Different is better than better”- Sally Hogshead December, the time when we are universally called to look back at the good, the bad and the ugly. The time when it’s easier than ever to lose hope because we seem to only...

How to Let Go of What People Think of You

In the process of letting go, you will lose many things from the past, but you will find yourself. — Deepak Chopra First impressions are bullshit. There have been many times that I made a wrong judgement on someone based on meeting them for the first time. I do not...

To The Police Officer That Racially Profiled Me.

I forgive you. I remember it like it was yesterday. I was a 19-year-old kid. It was a hot summer evening back in Michigan and it was about a month before I was getting ready to go away to College.  I was excited and yet anxious for what the near future had in...

Ego Is Not A Dirty Word

The truth about ego A healthy amount of ego facilitates success and happiness.  But how much is too much? Without some ego, you’ll lack the confidence to reach even a minimal level of success.  Too much ego on the other hand, can result in overconfidence...

Gotta have Hope

Make new history every day — Soliloquy 3 Here, here, Caelyn! Now that’s a word! Hope…Is that where you’re thoughts are pondering on today? Yes, my lovely critical mind. Hope…rhymes with Pope… Hmmm, let’s skip that one… Caelyn, what are you thinking about Hope?...

Facing Christmas After Death

In The Chronicles of Narnia, C.S. Lewis introduces us to a mythical creature called a faun. The faun’s name is Mr. Tumnus and he is the first creature that Lucy meets after entering the Kingdom of Narnia through the wardrobe in the spare room. “It is winter in Narnia,...

Shopping With My Girls

Yesterday, I took my two girls shopping. We spent several hours running around town doing things they liked, which meant there was hardly any time left to work on my book. Of course, we had fun. We went to stores and bought things. We had lunch together, as well. One...

Importance

Placing importance on thisimpotence on thatour days begin with importance’sand end rituals and habits, declarations of peacetribulations running throughspectrum of mindnight cap or night’s end all a matter of importance. Where we place importanceemotions binds ties...

Listening

Thoughts of goodwill, what it means, How we open ourselves to others Letting their lives meld into ours, Moments of time in sacred unity. Hearing the cries from others hearts Knowing they need someone to listen, Hearing what these hearts are saying Understanding they...

New Life

Of course, it always starts somewhere. In my case, my past became history when I decided to put the past behind me, to accept that I’ve moved beyond it, and to start and create my own true happy life. So I created a new folder on my notebook called ‘New Life’. And I...

Approaching The Worst 10th Anniversary

Reflecting on ten years of growth, change, choice, and life without my brother One month from today, my brother will have been gone for ten years. It will have been ten years since the accident that took his light from this undeserving world. This Christmas will...

New Freedom

Stripped bare of what he once possessed Is this man now poor or finally free? A smile breaks full across his face With bright twinkle in green eyes. Watching his slow, deliberate moves Seemingly with no wasted motions, Walking purposely towards the corner Giving...

Of Secrets and Lies in Relationships

I asked someone the other day what the difference is between a secret and a lie.  I had never really questioned these two human concepts before, and the question came up because she divulged a very big secret she keeps from her family.  When I asked her the...

Passage Of Time

No one but me and my shadow,  To contend with. Wanting another soul to commiserate. My loneliness, I wish to obliterate. Another soul to offer a hand,  United we stand,  This precious time is for you and me,  Together forever, we shall be.  In...

Oh No! The holidays again!

Here it is the middle of December already. I thought I just closed the pool for the season and there’s already snow on the ground! I’ve got the tree up and decorated, as well as the living room and dining room. The stockings are hung from the mantel and the manger is...

Mom, Tell Me About Your Failures…

Preaching…. to say I had a talent for it, was an understatement.  I was GIFTED. My son said I must have been a PASTOR in my last life. But, my preaching was backfiring. I was confused. Why had my solid, knowledge packed, 2 hour PhD thesis on the importance of...

Let’s Make BullDancing a Thing!

27th Day in Spain Every time I mention anything to anyone about traveling to Spain, the one question I always get is, “Did you go to a bullfight?” People are fascinated with bullfights. I don’t think people realize how beautiful and graceful bullfighters are. I...

Get Him in the Ground Already

The first president whose portrait I can remember hung up in my elementary school classroom was George W. Bush. Is it sufficient, then, to say that I have no first-hand knowledge of who his father was, either as a person or in politics? There are others, though, who...

When you have to walk alone

No one believes in you We all have a path to take, be it good or bad. On this path, we will experience new things that will continuously shape us. Some paths are walked by us willingly and others are influenced by family or friends. Take college for example. Your...

Why Happiness and Joy are Not the Same Thing

See more in life every day How can there be joy when there is disease?How can there be joy when there is sorrow? First of all, I think that joy and happiness are not the same thing.  Happiness is fleetingJoy is deeperMore profoundA connection with God...

What is Precious?

Does your love have limitations?Does your love have deviations?Does it come with a lifetime guarantee? Tell me what would you doIf I bet my love on you?Does it come with any limited warranty? will your gilded love get tarnishedAnd your wooden heart is varnishedIs your...

Ballets

Dancers create many movements Celebrated in joy with lithe bodies, Ballets enrich our lives by telling tales Tragic events illuminated in dance. Important what they have to teach Applying lessons from the past, Wisdom right here in plain sight Waiting to be absorbed...

Is There a Conversation You Keep Avoiding?

Tips for Navigating Difficult Conversations Those conversations you keep putting off…you know the ones I’m talking about. The uncomfortable, even painful ones. But avoiding them is also uncomfortable, giving you a nagging feeling that makes it hard to focus on...

The Most Dangerous Time of The Year

It’s Almost Christmas — We Need To Be Kind To Ourselves As Well I’m one with the Who’s — I love everything Christmas. The tinsel, the colorful wrapping, all the trappings. The bright, shining baubles, the stars on the tree, the twinkling lights in decorated...

FOR THE LOVE OF…..

Why Do Kids Exasperate Us So?! I’m talking to all you moms and dads out there! What is it about kids that have the capacity to make us want to run away and scream and pull our hair out! What is it that we have mean thoughts that are wholly wrong, but in the...

4 Life Lessons I Have Learned From My Angel Wife

On August 28, 2011, I met the most beautiful, kind, and fun person that I have ever known. I first noticed her in church and was stunned at how beautiful she was. I couldn’t stop thinking about her. Later that day I saw her again at another church meeting and...

What Are A Few Life Lessons From This Year?

3 Lessons I Would Like to Share With You How did this year go for you? Was it a good year? Or was it a difficult year? Did you have any life lessons which will help you next year and years to come? Have you ever asked yourself any of these questions before? Most...

Is Fate your friend or enemy?

Do you believe in fate or destiny, what would you choose? Fate does not care about my plans,for it knows what is meant to be.It tells meeverything happens for a reasonso forget about colluding with destiny. Fate has a higher purpose, a direction a goalwhich if I...

Passing The Baton On To My Kids…

ave you watched those relay races where the first runner sprints towards the 2nd runner ahead and hands over the baton?  Parenting, I felt in many ways was similar to that. The parent in a constant sprint towards their child, passing over all their wisdom,...

Gog

Run to the mountain; Seek refuge in shallowsThe hordes of the enemy, Gog, lie in wait.But when they advance, our Sovereign shall see.His anger will burn at our enemies hate. He will not act too late to summon a swordAgainst those who scheme to plunder his people.He’ll...

One tip on how you can improve your relationships

Relationships are super important to me. They always have been.  The desire to connect with people is deeply rooted in the core of who I am and impacts all that I do. I love heart to heart talks over coffee with kindred spirits. I’m more heart motivated than head...

Too Soon You Died

Over my time of eight years in the funeral and cemetery industry, I personally handled the arrangements for over 1,000 individuals. But few would affect me the way that my very last case would. The call arrived from the hospital that we had a body to pick up. There...

The Fat And Festive Season Is Here, Lighten Up

Most of us eat, drink, and spend far too much around the holidays. It can be overwhelming and even oppressive for some. We want to look our best, be our best, and celebrate our best.  This overloaded carousel, of course, churns up masses of conflicting choices....

Not So Jingle Bells

Blinking lights decorate the streets like stars in the night sky. Houses glow with a calm spirit. Fellow tourists walk from shop to shop. The sound of hoofs thudding on soft snow patter past me as I sip on creamy hot chocolate with whip cream and a dusting of...

Are You a River or a Rock?

When you think of your life, are you a river or a rock?  Imagine a flowing river, as you sit and watch birds swim in it, small fish flutter by, while insects bob and weave through the current. The river picks up branches of trees, leaves, and other travelers of...

The Most Valuable Present is Not Always Under the Tree.

On his knees, staring down into the murky water, Bobby sobbed, “Please bring daddy back to us.” Despite, The wooden planks of the small pier biting into his knees, he didn’t care. This small pier jutting out over the water behind his house is Bobby’s sacred spot. When...

Why I Love My Family’s Christmas Traditions

The Christmas traditions in my family are likely older than the traditions in most other families. There are two specifically that have been practiced every year for over a hundred years. There are other, younger, traditions that sprang up to serve their purpose for...

Precious Breaths

Your problems aren’t as big as they seem. Snow was everywhere. The air was cold and dry, stinging my nose with every inhale. I was already behind schedule as I rushed out the door, my twin brother frantically waiting to leave.  This wasn’t normal. Keith and I...

The Old Man’s Song

This song is solace -the song of an old manLet me restI’ve been traveling alone for a long time.My feet, worn outMy heart has agedMy mind is satisfiedMy journey is the color of sunset.This weak vessel still carries a young soul -soul inhales knowledge, exhales...

A Tear Fell From My Eye

A tear fell from my eye And in that tear, I saw My husband absent from me My dad, I could no longer see The grave had filled my soul With grief and pain, it stole And caused my heart to cry A tear fell from my eye And in that tear, I saw The waves overwhelmed me Those...

Letting Go

Deepening awareness in my spirit Knowing what is important now, Present to this sacred moment Feeling where it is in time. Ripples of truth from within Insights into who I am, Letting go of my past follies No need to think of them again. Living with these present...

Falling Star

The first to hit the floor was a pale blue sphere laced with silver swirls and dusted with glitter. The plastic ornament bounced on the hardwood with a hollow knock and rolled until it came to rest against a chair leg, leaving a faint trail of sparkles. The tree...

eBay Kindness

I’ve been on eBay since 1997, which seems like a pretty long time ago, 21 years to be precise. If you go back 21 years in the other direction, it would be 1976, the bicentennial, and that is a REALLY long time ago… Anyway, a couple of years ago I was trying to amass a...

The Art of Shutting Up and Listening

I tell these tales not to boast about what I have done and am doing but to show the miracle of what happens when you shut up and listen and ask questions. I met this young guy at a meeting in Malaysia where a bunch of us were talking strategy and was instantly...

Life lessons I learned from my cat

I’d dare say that my cat is the most awesome cat in the entire world, yes, I’m biased, but it doesn’t make it any less true. Apart from being super cool and easy to live with, he doesn’t seem remotely bothered by my incessant desire to make him dance with me to Taylor...

If You Have Nothing Nice To Say, Don’t Say It At All

Noted…but why don’t we say the nice things either? People often advise that you should keep your mean thoughts about others to yourself. And I happened to learn this lesson quite well one fine afternoon in kindergarten. Our class had been assigned the task of...

Turning Negatives Into Positives

We all have days that test our patience. And today started out like that for me.  Chasing my two-year-old son around the house this morning trying to get him ready was one thing.  But turning up to daycare only to be told he can’t attend today because he was...

Wisdom

Speak up my sonSpeak the truth to menDon’t hold back a wordTell it time and time again I know your but a boyAnd early in your walkBut I will fill you withThe way in which to talk I know of the fearAnd doubt within yourselfBut you’ll learn strengthTake my word down...

Christmastime in Manhattan

Sidewalks overflow with teeming mobs Darting in and out of overloaded shops, Windows of electronics, clothes and jewelry Boldly draw these throngs into their midst. Raw scents of chestnuts permeate the air Music of the season plays in every corner, Lights, bows and...

Christmas During The End of Days

Light among the darkest days We may be people who celebrate the season of light in the darkness, but we still have work to do.  We should celebrate holidays, but we should also reflect upon others in distant realms. Even if they are of another faith, or...

Morning Darkness

Sitting in shrouds of morning darkness Listening to resounding silence, Few lights mar my present view Comforted by being all alone. Emptiness in morning meditations Letting whatever comes just pass, Calmness soothes my heart and soul Peaceful beginning as time...

The Christmas Refuge

It was a fortnight before Christmas. In a small village near the coast, a little girl turned off her flashlight. She used it to secretly read under the covers when it was past her bedtime. Alyssa sat up straight in bed, thinking that she could hear reindeer flying...

That Christmas Gift You Never Wanted Might Be Good For You

“You can’t always get what you want, but if you try some time you get what you need.” — The Rolling Stones Christmas is the time for giving. It’s also the time for receiving — awful gifts you may not necessarily want. I had an instance of this occur to me very...

How I Learned The Surprising Truth About Santa

My Wish For You — May Your Days Be Merry And Bright When I was a little girl, I was told that Santa brought the tree on Christmas Eve. Late at night while we were all tucked in our beds dreaming of toys and sweets, he would slide down the chimney with a beautifully...

The Best Christmas Gift My Grandpa Never Gave Us

I made my Dad cry From the time I was 8 till I was 15, I lived in an old farmhouse out in the country. I attended a suburban school district, very forward looking and head and shoulders above the schools my official street address said I should have attended....

Letter to my daughter at Christmas

Dear Daughter, You were born two months early, and I wasn’t so sure either one of us would survive. But here we both are, eleven years later, and as Christmas draws near, my heart is writing this letter to you. Many times, I have commented that it is not easy being a...

The Anonymity of On-line Dating

She remained glued to her laptop and gazed at the profiles like one of the HR professionals, looking for an immediate replacement. Finding a right guy scrolling up and down was about choosing a person whose political opinions are neutral, a wanderlust, an avid reader...

3 Ways to Deal with your Unwanted Gift

At this time of year, we may or may not look forward to the idea of giving and receiving gifts. Whether you are religious or not the tradition of giving gifts is steeped in history and closely associated with Christmas to remind us of the presents given to Jesus by...

The Fascinating Ritual of Christmas

There is something about the Christmas season that is so mesmerizing and also, endearing. How did it come to be that for a solid month large swaths of the world become intoxicated with the same seasonal spirit, preoccupied with the same seemingly frivolous pursuits,...

I laughed in spite of myself

No one was allowed in Grandma’s attic.  “Bats and rodents live up there,” Mother cautioned.  “Then, why do you keep all those boxes up there?” I’d ask.  “We have nowhere else to keep them,” she’d reply.  That worried me. All the months those...

Welcoming the Law Of Attraction Into Your Life

Whenever we want to change something about our lives, we look to others for a solution. What if you were empowered to alter your course and in effect, be your own genie in a bottle — with the ability to manifest every dream you have from this point on? Throughout our...

A Christmas Carol Tale

“Half a league, half a league, Half a league onward, All in the valley of Death Rode the six hundred. “Forward, the Light Brigade! Charge for the guns!” he said. Into the valley of Death Rode the six hundred.” “War is cruel!” The elderly man threw aside The Examiner...

Forget Conventional Success

& create your own path What is success? A high-level career, a six-figure income, holidays in Bali, a big house, marriage. Society keeps throwing these images of success in your face. You know what your life should look like, and which boxes you have to tick for...

Christmas Pearls

Sometimes, my partner, Dave, blows me away with his wisdom.  Some days he is a pain in the ass, when he tickles me, chases me around the island in the kitchen with his cold hands, or pokes fun at me, but I pester him as well. We have a great relationship when it...

Contentment

Awareness of all within myself So deeply and completely felt, A peaceful feeling of contentment Full acceptance in this moment. Once important thoughts no more Gone to ethers of the past, Letting go of disturbing tensions No longer grasping for more and more....

The Battle for River Neckinger

“I am reminding you, Richard, If you win this case for us, you will definitely be made a senior partner here. Also, you can carry on with your profession as an attorney,” said Mark Chelmsford sipping a cup of hot latte. “Yes, I am aware of that Mr. Mark. You are...

Grandpa! You Are Embarrassing Me.

Families were all gathered huddled in small circles waiting for their future concert musician to come out. We had just finished Landon, my eldest grandson’s Middle School holiday concert. He is a violinist. Playfully, I reached over and tapped Bently, who is six, and...

A Friend of Depression

This is a story about living with depression. Yet this is not a story about living with depression. It is not me that lives with depression. Yet it is me that lives with depression. Depression does not affect me daily. Yet depression does affect me daily. I am not the...

How to Stop Being so Sensitive

Photo by Asdrubal luna on Unsplash Everyone has their own reaction to criticism, slights, and bad news.  Some of us are naturally more sensitive than others.  However, becoming very upset due to a perceived insult isn’t something you’re born with. It’s...

Why You Must Stop Searching for a Soulmate

Are you unhappy in love because you’re desperately trying to find your soulmate?  There’s a better way!  You don’t have to spend your entire life looking for love.  In fact, true love might be right in front of you, but you’ve been blind to it. Open...

America’s Persona

Sun shines brightly in pale blue sky Clouds painted with pink and gray, Knowing mysteries will be revealed Thoughts begin racing through my mind. Stirring emotions with these thoughts What persona is my America wearing? Once strong character seems to be lost Riches...

My top 3 reasons why owning a dog is the best

For my whole life, I have always had a dog (or two). They have been my constant companions throughout many ups and downs. And they have each had unique personalities that have greatly blessed my life. I love dogs. I can’t help it. Here are my top 3 reasons why having...

Opening Heart

Emptiness felt within my being Wondering why I feel it here, “Empty of what”? I ask myself, How shall this emptiness be filled? Perhaps renewed feelings of love Love more deeply for all beings, Stronger compassion to be felt For those invisibly passing by. Eyes wide...

Love across the Berlin wall

Love across the Berlin Wall “Did you hear the news on the radio, Sam? The Berlin wall will fall this week,” said Anna peeking towards Sam avoiding the barbwire on top of a bullet-ridden Berlin wall. “Yes, I have heard Anna. Finally, we will get rid ourselves from this...

Jigsaw

The first I went thru the motions, Just took my turn, Never really realize The slow and steady burn. When it was over And he had had enough, I was getting started, Although the road was rough. Though he had fallen out of love, Needed to start on a whim, I had had 7...

Character vs Reputation

Today I read a tweet sharing a variation of the quote by the American basketball coach John Wooden, the original quote I believe is, “Worry about your character, not your reputation. Your character is who you are, and your reputation is who people think you...

“And, O, The Stars Were Bright!”

A Christmas Poem There are so many wonderful songs and poems that tell the Christmas story. From the sonorous verses of the King James Bible, to the soaring lyrics of our favorite hymns, poets and musicians down the ages have taken their turn at telling and retelling...

Unique Beings

People pass their years in many ways Some constrained by norms to meet, Others being selves felt deep within Not caring much what the world thinks. Independent souls feeling true freedom Going where their roving spirits lead, Authentically themselves in actions taken...

Why not love and affection?

Why not ask for love and affection? Do you not think you are deserving my friend? ………….. Why fear appearing needy, when we are all in need of something, as humans on this planet. As humans on this planet, we are in need of love and affection, more so now than ever....

Rescue me!

My Human Thinks She’s A Cat Whisperer! Okay, so in a nutshell, my human mom started watching “My Cat From Hell”, on Animal Planet a few years ago, and now she thinks she’s a cat guru… In my humble opinion, well not really, but until she speaks cat like I do, all bets...

The Best of Peru’s Sacred Valley and How to See It

What is Peru’s Sacred Valley? Machu Picchu always grabs the headlines as the Andean destination of dreamers, scholars and intrepid tourists. Retracing the Inca Trail and the steps of the early 20th century explorers who “discovered” the “Lost City” has become almost a...

Doubt and Fear

Doubt is always hanging around telling me all the excuses why I can’t do something. “Oh, you don’t want to attempt to run 100 miles in one shot. You’ve got weak knees, you’ve never done anything like this.” Doubt comes up with every reason why not to try something and...

I Got the Car, He Got Christmas

December 1 is a rough day for me. This time of the year is not the joyous time it once was. It is a struggle for me to put up the tree, make my house festive, and look at everyone’s beautiful decor when they invite us over for celebrations. On December 1st, 9 years...

Doubt and Fear

I’ve got these two friends I hang out with a lot. My two friends have been hanging out with me pretty much most of my life. They seem to be a constant in life no matter what I’m doing, where I’m going or who else I’m with. When I was dating my now beautiful wife they...

Life Is The Dancer and We Are The Dance

It’s That Simple Life is so simple and beautiful. More than anything, it so magical and alive. I can see it dancing everywhere around me in the form of my surroundings. A few minutes earlier, I was sitting in my balcony. Luckily, my head slowly tilted upwards as I...

What Season This Year?

Season of lights is here again, Season of peace Season of love Season of reconciliation. This Christmas Season is wondering Will it be filled with hope and joy? Will people engage in meaningful ways? Or will it be another season of discontent? Will people of goodwill...

Mosaic

Broken bits of everything, added to the pile, torn and shattered composition, forced to wear a smile. Is this what human’s are made of, or is it only me, trying to plant a seed in a pile of crap, in hopes I’ll be a tree? Perhaps a bit simplistic, but the fault indeed...

Moonlight in Wisconsin

A Lesson in Baseball — and Life He was the only player in the history of baseball to make it to the Major Leagues from Class E minor league ball. Not bad, considering the lowest official designation in the game has always been Class D. He was a thirty-six-year-old...

The Vow

If I promised you forever, Would you understand, A love that is eternal Stronger than any man? If I asked for forever, Never leave my side Facing every trail together Never run and hide If we had forever My love would only grow Giving me eternity To find new ways to...

Inertia-The Activity Killer!

Make choices, not excuses! “I wish I’d gone traveling more. I can’t, now I have Grandkids.” “I would love to lose weight, but I look awful in lycra!” “I wish I’d learned to knit, but I don’t have time” We all do it. We talk ourselves out of things. When I moved onto...

You Need to Do More for your Loved Ones

“Your loved ones are unhappy. Do you know about it?” A friend of mine did the Unthinkable.  In other words, he committed a career hara-kiri. John had all the good things in life, that everybody aspires for. He had a high profile consulting job which took him across...

Morning Silence

Full morning moon in the West With sunrise breaking in the East, Life evolving as it should New energy coming with the sun. Mind placid as clear lake water Ripples stilled and calmed within, Absorbing what is present now Enjoying this peaceful morning air. No thoughts...

Train Window

picture myself staring through a glass train window… ………………………. Picture myself staring, through a glass train window. ……………………. The choo choos are deafened, they become mere background noise as your tired eyes give you away, as weary, falling asleep. …………………. Warmth...

I’m Grateful for My First Podcast

Today’s Non-stop Gratitude is for my 1st Podcast Is it even okay to be grateful to yourself? I think so. I support your being grateful to yourself for things you do. I also support the proper use of gerunds. Today, I am grateful to myself (and a few others) because...

I’m In A Hurry And Don’t Know Why

Oh, Why Must We Race To Red Lights?! Do we really want to perish? Must our earthbound souls take flight?   Truth be told, I am still horrified to drive here in South Western Ontario. I will not, shall not, cannot drive on the 401. Surely, and truly, it’s not a...

The Choices We Make

Every day we have choices to make. Make that every morning, starting with the choice to wake up or not. Once we choose, movement takes over, we can crawl into the deep backwards, and there is no judgement in that, we can drink out morning coffee and read the...

Life as we know it

“Last hug”, I joke to my father at the end of a protracted goodbye. “Never the last one,” he says into my shoulder. I memorize the smell of his checked shirt, the tower wall of his rib cage, the front door lamp, its flickering farewell. Backing out of the driveway, I...

Revisiting the Myth of Sisyphus

Sisyphus (as in The Myth of Sisyphus) was condemned by the gods to push a huge rock uphill, but whenever he managed to reach the top of the mountain, the rock would roll back down and he would have to start his labors all over again. There is an intentional attempt to...

My Childhood Experience With Night Terrors

He felt a presence in the room and then hands on him, touching his blankets. He was wide awake in a flash but his body froze with fear. He could not move a muscle. His eyes would not open, no noise would come from his throat. And still the hands moved over and on him....

Pandora’s Box Has Indeed Exploded

Why Sending Me Shopping Is Unwise! A while ago I was living under a cloud of doom and gloom. I’m still digging myself out of a hole I only made deeper, by being impetuous and rebellious. I’m talking about shopping… and spending money I had no business spending,...

How I Survived Being Homeless at Seventeen

I made it back to the apartment close to 8:00 a.m. My boyfriend Derek gave me a kiss goodbye before he drove away, leaving me to deal with the consequences waiting behind my front door. My mother wouldn’t be happy I stayed out all night again even though she knew the...

5 Truths About Life That Will Change The Way You Live

Life is a funny thing isn’t it. I mean not funny ha ha but funny hmmmm. We’re stuck in a belly for approximately 9 months, we’re born, we go through this labyrinth for an undetermined time and then poof, we’re gone. So what is life and what is it that we are...

What’s your excuse for not doing it?

Whatever it is…drop it, avoid it and leap through it !!! What are excuses? Meaning of the word Excuse in dictionary: Excuse(verb): seek to lessen the blame attaching to (a fault or offence); try to justify. But we have completely changed the basic meaning of the...

The Laminate Floor

I’m not sure what you mean when you mark up the eggs that way… I'm not sure what you mean when you mark up the eggs that way. Dark x’s in permanent colored ink, placed right in the middle of the flavored contraption, how odd. Do I take the risk then, peel the egg half...

Cocktails in a Black Satin Nightdress

Hazel, wife of Dick Japp, the Wenela official, coined this phrase in one of her letters, from which I quote: “From a woman’s point of view, life in the bush soon showed up any short-comings, and one learned to make, make do or do without. One memorable occasion was a...

The Art of Gentle

The world is run by Chicken Little. “The sky is falling! The sky is falling!” So it seems, anyway. The art of persuasion, particularly in the political realm, has been reduced to one key theme: Disaster looms! Only [your favorite platform here] will prevent it! While...

Life’s Worth

Don’t you ever doubt your self-worth… ………………………….. When the time comes, for your suffering, challenges in life you could not comprehend, don’t you ever doubt your self-worth. ………………………… Life without risk is not meant to be lived, it is the bloodstream oh humanity,...

My Grandmother Says

My Grandmother is a conversationalist. She has an opinion on every topic under the sun; after all, she is over seventy and has experienced much in life. We spend Wednesday afternoons together, my only free time in the week. I am all of fifteen years, and my name is...

New Frontiers

Spirits may lead to unknown places Exploring scenes never imagined, New frontiers enhancing our being Growing new powers deep within. No experiences ever void of wisdom When with awareness keenly felt, Some will open new horizons Others lessons from which to learn. Of...

The Day Jasper Went Home

Jasper the dog was a fluffy bundle of happiness. My two young sons adored him, petting and cooing at him at every opportunity. Jasper was content to lie peacefully on the living room floor next to Brendan and Shayne as they played Super Mario Sunshine on the X-Box,...

8 Lessons You Learn From Traveling the World

If you’ve never traveled much, it can be awe-inspiring to talk with someone that does. They have a wisdom and understanding of the world that you can’t gain from camping at the local lake or staying at a condo in Florida. Travelling gives you a more complete picture...

Memories or “Likes” – What are we Collecting?

Last night, I watched my girls board a plane without me for the first time. And I forgot to tell Facebook. As my girls excitedly traipsed across the dark, windblown tarmac to the waiting plane, I realized I had not snapped a photo to document the event. Oops. I...

I am so unbelievably grateful for modern technology

We didn’t have the internet until I was in Jr. High. Dial up internet was still fairly new and my Mom and Dad hesitated to sign us up for it. I told them I needed it for school (which was at least partly true) so we got a computer, and the internet. My parents went...

Gratitude

There is a difference between gratitude and happiness and although we say “Happy Thanksgiving,” one can be thankful without being happy. I think. So whether this holiday finds me happy or not, there are people and situations in my life for which I am grateful. Here...

Thanksgiving Blues

Thanksgiving is this week. Whether you celebrate the Holiday or not (there’s good reason to protest the inception of the Holiday) understand that the holidays are tough for some. Thanksgivings are not always happy. Some people have lost loved ones and this is the...

The Finest Grain of Life

Dear God, this beautiful ash coloured Sulphur Mountain, made of stone and glacial ice, surrounded by wisps of smoke, that we call cloud, but I call heaven. ……………………. As the eagle soars, like a king of the highest reaches, my tears speak for my lost speech, patterns of...

My Train Station Diary

‘Could you please hurry up Stuart? I have to catch a train to Vancouver. It leaves in half an hour’ I said glancing at my wristwatch. ‘Oh! don’t worry sir, I have never been late to the destination for any passenger. Surely you will reach in time and board the train.’...

Black tie

Dark figures cluttered the playhouse’s stone steps. Men and women in elegant gowns and coats, backs stiff against the wind, surged forward, eager to escape the flakes, the flurries, the white confetti, while gusts twirled left-over leaves around high heels and Oxford...

Tis the Season for Stress

The holidays always seem to bring out the best and the worst in people. “Never stop being a good person because of bad people.” - Anonymous I’ve worked several years in retail throughout my life. I’ve had countless interactions with people over the years when I was...

How to Connect With People

If you are ever feeling out of sorts, alone or untouched, tell someone the story of something that has touched you. The book “The Power of Kindness,” author Piero Ferrucci talks about how human beings are able to “resonate” with other human beings. I love this...

In praise of the heart of life

It’s under there, somewhere, the beating heart of the life that we all share. It’s beneath the skin — the infinitely variegated surfaces that each individual shines up or oils down or covers with glitter or costume or camouflage. It’s coequal with the head — the...

The Place Even Google Maps Can’t Find

I’m the worst kind of connected. So connected I don’t even realize how connected I am. I’ve got devices connected to other devices connected to vehicles connected to email accounts connected to thermostats connected to appliances. The engineer in me thinks this is...

The Best of Both Worlds

A Guide For People Over Fifty If you’re fifty or over and think that life has passed you by this article is for you. It will show you what works according to scientists who have studied the lives of people in their fifties, sixties, seventies, and above. As you grow...

The Secret to Happiness is Compassion

Be Compassionate, Be Happy If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion.— Dalai Lama In this remark lies a simple truth. The way to happiness doesn’t lie just within yourself, but in your relationships and...

Know Thyself

Who Am I? Good Question How well do you know yourself? It is a toss-up over which Ancient Greek we must thank for this aphorism, but there is an equally compelling argument for it originating in Egypt some thousands of years ago. Regardless of its origins, it is good...

I’m Grateful We’ve Got Fat Back

Non-Stop Gratifeels What’s worse than egg whites or margin? Or margarine on egg whites? Or skim milk? I’m so grateful to the scientists who have worked out fat is good for you! I Drank the Non-Fat Flavor-Aid They just added more sugar! I tried the egg whites thing. I...

On Passion

I still get excited about the sheer awoken-ness of characters. About the mystery of them. While editing the second scene of Delta Phi (https://shethewriter.com/delta-phi/) I got to see the strength of a cinematographers instinct in a new environment, and the...

If you would be my child

If you were my child I’d want to see happiness in your eyes Just to hear your laughter Would make me overjoyed I would light the sun in the sky To brighten up your day I would even ask the moon To make the dark go away If you’d be tears all over I’d calmly comfort you...

Gratitude

A quick google search rendered this common definition for gratitude: grat·i·tude /ˈɡradəˌt(y)o͞od/ noun noun: gratitude 1. the quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness. 2. “she expressed her gratitude to the committee for...

The Discipline of Thanksgiving

“The Pilgrims made seven times more graves than huts…nevertheless, [they] set aside a day of thanksgiving.” H.U. Westermayer “Let us come before His presence with thanksgiving.” Psalm 92:2 Grateful people live happier and fulfilled lives. Also, studies are suggesting...

Desert Beauty

Recalling stark beauty in the desert, Varied cacti with colorful blooms Rolling scattered rock formations, Seemingly barren but fully vibrant. Desert sometimes metaphors for life Desolate dusty spaces, withered and dry, At others, sparkling oases on horizons...

This is Why We Need Storytellers More than Ever

“Stories are a communal currency of humanity.” — Tahir Shah A few years back at the Sundance Film Festival, screenwriter and director Taylor Sheridan was greeted with loud applause as he walked on stage to discuss his film, Wind River. “Why you do it,” he said,...

A Season of Peacefulness and Abundance

What I Am Thankful for Right Now Every morning when I walk out onto my front porch I have a moment of silent gratitude. The air is crisp, the fog is creeping across the countryside, and I experience peace which reaches deep into my being. After our move almost three...

Why You Should Let Me Vent

Few Tips And Tricks To Make Your Partner Feel At Ease What If You Don’t Let Me Vent Well, if you don’t let me vent, I better start off by informing you of the subsequent behavioral changes that will show up for sure. Today, or the day after. If I am not wrong, I am no...

Beauty, Wisdom, Truth, Success

…beauty is to be found within and that cannot be missed because it is essential to self-growth and success. oday I woke up to a brand new day. As a sign of appreciation, I took a moment to decipher what was in my head at that very moment; each morning my head is...

I’m Grateful for Thanksgiving

Non-stop Gratifeels It makes senses, right? Express gratitude for the holiday during which we express gratitude. It's placed perfectly on the calendar. Fall is the Perfect Time for Thanksgiving! It’s a few weeks after Halloween. I’m Grateful for Halloween What an odd...

Ways To Help Make The World A Little Bit Better

Is it just me? Or does it seem that children are forgetting their manners more and more these days? Why might that be? This may be a big part of it, but certainly not the whole story. Children mirror what they see, what they hear… What they live. This seems like a...

The Day My Daughter Forgot Me

I hadn’t seen my baby girl for six months. Vanessa was only supposed to stay with her aunt Benita for a couple of weeks until I got things straightened out. At least that’s what Micah told me. I found out she was leaving when my estranged husband told me his sister...

Simplicity

Simplicity gives more ease to life In ways not always understood, Sorting out myriad complexities Never really needing to exist. The meaningful essence of life Realizing happiness as it evolves, Complexities move in circular ways Leading to unwanted distractions....

Stop By the Bar On the Way to Reverse

22nd Day in Spain One of my favorite things about Madrid is not needing a car. I haven’t had to drive in three weeks! The public transportation here is amazing. You can get just about anywhere in the city via bus and train and never need to drive. A car trip outside...

This is What Happens When You Learn to Surrender

“At fifteen life had taught me undeniably that surrender, in its place, was as honorable as resistance, especially if one had no choice.”  — Maya Angelou A few years back, I dug my heels deep into the batter’s box at Owen Jones Field, a park nestled in the Oakland...

Drift away

You dwell inside a sleepy mist For as long as time allows Prefer instead to exist in dream Instead of here and now Where is your Xanadu, Your oasis, your Shangri-La That you merely close your eyes And yet travel so far Why do you stray so far from me Is coexistence...

Little History

Just now, while was at lunch, my sister Kathy emailed me to say she had discovered my father’s grandfather’s brother had been a successful cartoonist. It came as a complete surprise to all my family members. Our father lived a very interesting life. Working as a...

Unforgiven

Give me another chance Why, I’ve given you twenty And everytime you disappoint Although you’ve had more than plenty, More chances than you deserve Yet don’t seem to comprehend All the money and time lavished on you For you to just play pretend Everything is fine, and...

Don’t Speak

Can’t talk to you about this, I'm not supposed to feel, better to forget you, know my lips are sealed. I’m not allowed to love you, forbidden as you know, I think it’s time to say goodbye, yeah I think it’s time I go. Why do I linger, my feet deny my request, I try to...

Just Here

the clouds are parting, for you, just for you…. From the past to the present, we are all our bones, while we wait to be discovered, in the better light, tomorrow. ******************** But here it is, the clouds are parting, for you, just for you, do you not realize...

Unique Presence

Present now in peaceful calm Observing people in their trances, Many not present, just in motion Doing what they think they should. Some colorful characters standing out Fully alive in their eccentric personas, Expressing who they truly are With their gestures and...

20 Things I Am Grateful Every Damn Day!

I’ll keep this to 20 though there are a million things really. Thanx to Nicole (though she isn’t one of the 20 things, she’s one of the million things) for sending out a request to writers to write about gratitude. I could write about this all.damn.day. Before I begin...

Yes, You Are a Teacher

5 Simple Strategies You Can Use Right Now George Bernard Shaw is credited with saying, He who can, does. He who cannot, teaches. At worst, this quotes makes all teachers look like frauds and charlatans. At it’s best, it’s a call to those of us who have done something...

Erased

A monarch safely hidden “When can I leave?” Isabel stared out the window, over the browns and reds of the wet stone courtyard, over the smooth black iron of the great cannon, beyond the fortress battlements. Fog swirling through the valley below erased all detail from...

Festival of All Festivals

Doubt is like darkness, Trust is like light, There is no way to destroy light by throwing darkness into it. So come together and enjoy the festival of lights. To fight the fears and heal the pain, The festival of festivals come again. To bring back everything that...

The Good Samaritan-One you Never Expect

“Where are my keys?” Everett Draper, social activist, and the pastor at St. Lukes Episcopalian Church checked his jacket pockets for his keys. Everett had just finished his workout at his fitness club. His philosophy, “To neglect the body is to neglect the spiritual.”...

The Angel Oak

Lessons from the original yogis I lay amongst the wet leaves and smell the rich soil. I feel roots going into the earth like tangled yarn. Each strand touches, caressing the strands of so many others. It is an unending chain. Am I asleep? Don’t open your eyes. I’ll...

The Tale of the Edinborough Street

My shopping was over and I started returning home on my bicycle. It had a front basket in which I kept all my groceries. The night had slowly crept in from the dusk when I started my shopping. I had to cross the Edinborough street adjoined by apple orchards, shrubs,...

Did I tell you about the skeletons?

The Skeletons went up October 1st. My dear neighbors did not wait for something decent like the 25th or the 29th. They charged out on the 1st of October and worked their deed. Eery white skeletons with bony smiles occupy lawn chairs. They appear engaged in romantic...

My Search Finally Ends, A Russian/American Fairytale

March 2002 “We have started our descent. We will be landing in Kiev in 20 minutes. The time now in Kiev is 4:00 p.m. and currently 5 degrees Celsius,” the pilot announces. Soon, I arrive in Kiev, but Lugansk, Ukraine is my final destination. I meet a few women from a...

Why Thanksgiving Day Is The Best

Family Gatherings, Good Fellowship, And Gratitude Though our Canadian Thanksgiving holiday is long past, I love to see the preparations for the many Thanksgiving gatherings which will soon be taking place in homes across America. Thanksgiving — I hadn’t realized it...

I Ghost You, You Block Me, We’re a Cyber Family

Did you sing that, like the Barney song? If you did, I applaud you. Let’s take a trip back in time, to the early 1990’s before Facebook became our main source of networking with friends and family. It was back when everyone had “house phones” and cell phones were a...

In Between Place

Can we talk about the in-between place? You know the place where I love you, but still try to guard my heart. Such a tricky place. It’s like a lukewarm place and I don’t like it. I understand the logic behind the in-between place. If things go left, I won’t be so...

When the Smoke Clears

When the smoke clears will there be the smoldering ruins of a vast and once gold tinted empire? Will the burned and scorched shoulder bones of a Titan blackened by the fires that burned so bright in heart lay among the broken glass and seared concrete? Or will just be...

Join Hands, Give Thanks

I lived through two decades before I discovered that there were people in the world who made dressing with stale bread cubes instead of fresh cornbread. My oldest sister’s second husband, the nice one, was from somewhere up North. New York, I think. He had dark,...

Omaha Beach & the American Cemetery

There are so, so many markers placed so carefully in ordered rows over so much ground. One comes and it finds you in whatever way it does. You find it, too, like partners in some strange kind of a dance, or round one fighters in the ring. Because that’s how it feels...

New Feelings

Newfound feelings of peace and love Abundantly alive within my spirit, Not sure from where or how they came Enjoying pleasant warmth they bring today. Waves wash gently through my heart Unexplained but deeply felt, Calmness as this morning breaks Light revealing...

The Caravan of the Desert

“No sign of water, No sign of vegetation, No sign of human habitation. We are doomed in this Desert” shouted a migrant of the Caravan. The Caravan mostly consisted of tribal communities who move about from place to place in different seasons in search of livelihood,...

A Way to Stillness

Epode to Tao You’ll find me in emptiness and stillness Though life in abundance, eternal continual of existence When accepting the constant with an open mind With compassion and even-handedness While understanding the equality, cadence of creations In effortless peace...

Winds of Change Are Blowing

The moving air around me  has given me new light. I feel the cold air blowing,  into the solitude of night. There’s something morphing, an odd sensation. I’m allowing it to engulf me A wind of change is here. It’s like a new epiphany. I embrace the cold, but fear it’s...

Why I’ll Never Forget Cody Coffman

My heart is broken into a thousand pieces today. Twelve people died a few days ago in Thousand Oaks, California, at the hands of a gunman at Borderline Bar and Grill. It’s a country-style bar frequented by young people complete with music and line dancing. It’s also...

The Importance of a Kickstand

A childhood lesson on leading by example and accepting that which you cannot control. I was in the back seat of the car, Mom and Dad in front and we were about a half a block from our house when I saw it. My old bicycle, lying down on the ground in the front yard of a...

Contentment and Freedom

Contentment with our place in life Contentment with its rhythmic flow, Watching new scenes unfold each day With changing nature of what is seen. Contentment in earth’s simple beauty Desiring no new toys with which to play, This contentment brings real freedom Freedom...

Everyone’s Obsession With Not Being Average

It will ultimately be your downfall Youtube, Instagram, Facebook, wherever you look, there is another “entrepreneur” who drops one of those inspirational quotes. They tell people to go out there and make a 6 figure income because they shouldn’t work a “9 to 5 job”....

The Day I Met Sir Ken Robinson

Several years ago, I had a magical experience, one that I nearly missed. The end result was me sitting in a Seattle restaurant on a Thursday night next to Sir Ken Robinson, he of the famous TED Talk on how schools are squelching creativity in children with nearly 54...

How to Eradicate a Kitchen Faucet

Our kitchen faucet suffered from a worsening water drip for years. An embarrassingly significant stream of water appeared this year. We spend excessive time delicately readjusting the faucet position with every use. At times, we succeeded in exiting the kitchen before...

Discoveries Anew

Cool autumn air kisses my face Awakening in a new season here, Brisk realities in day beckoning Sun slowly rising in eastern sky. Birds sing choruses in their flights Season’s migrations to warmer south, Changing seasons, changing views Earth continues on natural...

that’s when

I’m walking on wet ground bare feet touch the grass I see life in their green limbs that’s when I know the earth is happy. The unseen passes through me along with it, memories and wishes I find myself reminiscing that’s when I realized creation is blessed. I live in a...

When I Get Old

Just when the day wanes longer, Legs and body not getting any stronger, Memory short and not clear, Times of ending days are near. Hair turns from gray to white, And it seems like you’re not feeling right. When you’re hearing turns quiet And you’re not as fit but put...

Laughmares and Time Travel

19th day in Spain You lose half a day traveling from the central time zone to Madrid. 7 hours disappear from your life. Your watch and phone adapt as soon as you power them on in your new time zone, but it can take your body a few days to catch up. The Tale of...

How to enjoy life more through a simple realization

We have Linkin Park to thank for. It’s easy to get lost in the storm of life. Simply because one thing happens that leads to another and so on. It’s an endless chain of action-consequences. We gotta do that and this, we gotta go here and there. We are always on a run,...

Revelation

If you love me like you say that you do, if you truly feel that way, careful what you say and do, when it’s separate from what you say. You tell me that you love me, but in your heart you know, merely words upon the breeze, what do you do to show? Syllables without...

Yanni: His music can stir your soul and melt your heart

Thankful for 25 years of EXTRAORDINARY music “I don’t want to relax the audience; I want to engage them in the music, get them interested. My music can be very rhythmic, very energetic, and even very ethnic.” — Yanni Yanni originally known as Yiannis Chryssomallis was...

Why Do Women Call Each Other Sluts?

Glenna Scott is a slut! That’s what it said in the girls’ room in one of the stalls. I might have never seen it if I didn’t stop to go to the bathroom between third and fourth periods. The writing was large and in black marker, and my heart pounded like a fist in the...

Dear John,

Let’s face it, I stopped crying, the tears have had years for drying, if you heard that I’ve been missing you, I can assure my aim will improve. A little tip for the next one on the menu, keep expectations low, and he’ll convince you. As for me, my palate is more...

Nocturnal Visitors

Visits from a Leopard and a Pride of Lions. “Before dawn, as with the leopard, the lions simply melted away into the bush as though they had never been there.” In the 1950’s, Senanga, Barotseland, a remote settlement on the banks of the Zambesi, provided the setting...

Most Curious

Not all who wander are lost, not every soul seeks home, not every heart wants companionship, lonely does not always mean alone. Company is not a crowd, nor is love always shared, beauty is individual, unique, be careful when you care. We give the things freely, that...

The Best Advice You Didn’t Take

There seems to be no shortage of advice when you are undertaking a new adventure. Whether purchasing a car or getting married, everyone seems to have something to offer to persuade you one way or the other. This is especially true if you have an idea and want to run...

The Journey of a Boer Kid

The Journey of a Boer Kid Photo by Artem Sapegin on Unsplash I went out through the creaking door of my house in the misty morning. Not much was visible in the foreground. The ground was soggy and the air had a terrible smell. The occasional grunting of vultures was...

Creative Forces

Creative forces daily enrich our lives Whether our own, or works of others, Beautiful paintings and sculptures admired And stories and poetry touching emotions. Never quite sure how inspirations received Or exactly how they will ultimately evolve, With feelings...

The Boy Who Could Hear Your Thoughts

I can hear you saying, “Wait, what?!” 👇 👇 👇 Part 1 👇 👇 👇 The Boy Who Could Hear Your Thoughts A Superpower That Could Drive You Crazymedium.comKid People…are…crazy. That is what I think after hearing everyone’s thoughts. After I could hear my Mom, I went over to my...

Kindness is Natural to Human Beings

Last December, the New York Times published an article called “Can Kindness Be Taught.” The author, Richard Schiffman, reached out to me while doing his research for the article, having heard about my work promoting kindness in schools and beyond. The day the article...

You Loved Me More

In the Fall of 2010, I met my first husband, David. We dated briefly and quickly moved in with one another. I soon found out I was pregnant, and we married a few months later. It sounds unremarkable because it was. There was no cutesy proposal, bridal or bachelor...

Einstein and Lao Tzu Shooting Dice in Nirvana

Mathematicians have chiseled reality down to fit square holes but reality’s round peg origins are always apparent. Bloody sweat dripped by hammering buffoons lubricates but never illuminates. When slide-rulers become swords governments can justify collateral damage...

Walking In My Nearly-Winter Wonderland–Photos

Frost Poems and Pictures My Halloween tree has shed its last leaves, now bare and ready for the fall’s finale. The end of grey and tan, ocher and rust. The snows have come. Sifting down in the cold, pre-dawn light, the little specks glide past my window, covering roof...

This is How Your Mortality Helps You Live

“You only live 26,000 days. I’m going to wear them all out.” — Quincy Jones My relationship with my mortality has gone from non-existent, to denial, to finally one of companionship. But today, I’m inspired by my impending fatality, and not in some ominous way. Knowing...

Fantasy vs. Reality

Or Man’s Ideas VS. Women’s Reality Fantasy: It should only take an hour to clean the house. Reality:  ( My reality anyway…) An hour to prepare for actual cleaning. Tidying up, putting stuff away in various rooms, getting sidetracked by other messes… By the time one...

Beautiful Lessons From My Ugly Painting

A few weekends ago, I had a yearning to paint something. Trust me when I tell you, I AM NO PAINTER, but my dear mom in law gifted me with some canvasses and paint brushes with encouragement to create something. She is a very talented artist and I feel like an awkward...

I Saw a Ghost on Halloween

The first time I met Mary was at my daughter Vanessa’s twelfth birthday party. She arrived with her son Hunter, one of Vanessa’s best friends, about an hour after the party started. Vanessa saw their car pull up from our window and squealed with delight as she and her...

Ignorance

We are born free yet we are in chains like Cain who striked his own Able not in vain, but in so much pain yet we are able to strike our own brothers and it doesn't even bother for an item, which even a father can turn his back on his son and then makes himself run...

How to Remove Toxic People From Your Life

“Don’t let negative and toxic people rent space in your head. Raise the rent and kick them out” — Robert Tew There’s an old saying,  “Show me your friends and I’ll tell you who you are.” The meaning behind those words are powerful. The truth is, the people you select...

How Bad is Regret?

“It’s not what your are, it’s what you don’t become that hurts.” — Oscar Levant There is always something which we want to do from deep within without any peer pressure or listening to external minds around us, which comes straight from the heart, soul and every...

Package Delicate, Handle with Empathy

My son’s pediatrician -Dr Crook was not a crook, but a gentle soul. He looked like a grown-up version of Harry Potter. Best of all, he did wave an invisible wizard stick. You would magically feel at ease in his presence. He would listen, I mean really listen to your...

Creek Torrents

Walking in early morning fog and rain Crossing stone bridge with kindred spirit, We stop midway seeing creek below Torrential water skims its banks. Brown leaves swirl aimlessly in torrents Having left trees where they once thrived, Trees tower high above raging...

Laws of Physics Complicate My Life

Albert Einstein(A German Physicist known to me for the theory of relativity and Brownian movement), Newton( known to me for laws of motion), Nicolas Copernicus (Mathematician and Astronomer)are known to the world for there unmatchable and significant contribution to...

Stone by Stone She Builds

A prosody Stone by stone she builds Rock on rock formations With every stone, she hopes To find her transformation Photo by Martine Weber A volcano so perpendicular To the clouds, always hiding Her crater lies in shadows On a plate almost submerging Dormant volcano...

No One Is A Weed

A Poem For Abuse Awareness in November We are, but dandelions… We are here for such a short time. When we go what seeds will we sow to the earth? Abuse is not only a “They” word. It is a “We” word. It is an “I” word. Once upon a meadow dandelions grew Free and wild...

When a Child has “behaviors”

In my day to day career, I hear this term DAILY. “Oh, he/she has “behaviors” and we can’t deal with him”. My career is in the child care industry. My role is to visit every type of early childcare program (daycares, preschools, out of school cares and day homes). I...

We All Begin as Strangers

Heads up!! This post references Tom Waits & Bette Midler! In my efforts to encourage my kindness students to do something kind for someone they don’t know, I often reference a song by Tom Waits, what Waits recorded as a duet with Bette Midler. It’s called “I Never...

The Spell

Whispered secrets in cemeteries, oaths made in blood and flesh, on this all hallows eve, witches take fancy, ascend into flight, cross silver moons if you believe. Dance around the mouths of graves, envoke the spirits past, break thru the realms of death, misbehave,...

Separation’s Tears

Jasiel cries himself asleep in darkness Lonely in his dusty tent, Tears of fear breed more panic Separated from Ritza and Andrus. Jasiel forcibly removed in Georgia, Only knows he is somewhere in Texas In crowded tents with lonely children, Never knowing where parents...

In Praise of the Regional Airport – a Travel Gift

If you’re lucky, you live near one. Wait, are those open check-in counters for real? Where are the snaking lines? Where’s the litter? The jostling crowds? It’s Albany International Airport serving New York’s Capital Region, eastern New York State and Western...

Freedom from Others’ Concept of Freedom

17th Day in Spain Life isn’t linear, is it? It meanders about, like water. When water flows down a hill, it doesn’t flow down a straight line. It takes the best path along the Earth’s surface. Water is good at finding the best path. The best path may not be as obvious...