A Home for Joy

When I ponder the word “Joy,” much comes to mind: the people I love most and all those who bring cheer (or bonafide festivity) into our world, the humans who make us smile or lift us up or make us better, the sound of laughter, the innocence of a newborn baby, the heartbeat of love, […]

A Story About Love

Disclaimer: This is a longer post than is typical; thank you for reading until the end.❤︎ Chapter One:Once upon a time, there was a baby who wasn’t planned but was wanted. She was loved, and nurtured, didn’t know fear, concern, or worry, was cared for with tenderness and affection. She explored her world with natural curiosity. […]

Yesterday’s Tomorrow

“Tomorrow comes into us at midnight very clean. It’s perfect when it arrives and puts itself in our hands. It hopes we learned something from yesterday.” Marion Robert Morrison (John Wayne) “Tomorrow, I’ll take better care of myself.” “Tomorrow, I’ll make smarter choices.” “Tomorrow, I’ll get enough sleep.” “Tomorrow, I’ll pursue healthier relationships.” “Tomorrow, I’ll work […]

The Happy Book

There is joy, and there is woe (bliss and suffering can dance on the same stage), and we humans react to those opposites in many different ways. Of course, happiness is subjective, but when we choose it, we are actively creating inner peace, moving forward into authenticity and self-worth awareness. (Even a magic wand won’t automatically make […]

Thursday Thoughts

A while ago, I read a comment from a nurse whose patients were in the last months of human life. What she heard over and over were stories that contained this awareness and sadness: “I wish I would have been true to who I knew I was when I had that chance.” I, too, have experienced that […]

Commune

As a verb, the word “commune” (/kəˈmjun/) means: contemplating, reflecting on, or experiencing with others, sometimes without using words. As a noun, the term “commune” (/ˈkämyo͞on/) is a collective—a group that bonds together, creating—figuratively or literally—a “village,” supported by a common ground. You’re aware, of course—unless you’ve been in a sequestered holding pattern your entire life— […]

Serendipitous Journeys 2022

I’ve been thinking about how diverse our individual journeys are despite what seems like a lot of sameness.  Sometimes, in day-to-day life, we simply “go through the motions.” Our routines take us from point A—when we get up until point Z—when we end the day. How often are our hours spent simply “moving through,” oblivious […]

Taking for Granted

I: Who, What, When Where, Why Like, I’m sure at least some of you, there are times I forget to see the life-signposts with flashing lights screaming: “Who are you hurting (hopefully unwittingly) with a lack of awareness?” “What, small but valuable something, are you missing running through life? “When do you choose to look away rather […]

Fearless Friday

I was asked by a friend, doing research, some “life queries.” Her questions and my responses follow.    Question: What keeps me up at night? Answers: • Nightmares (literally); had one again last night despite being completely violence averse. • Trying to figure out what I’m called to do with the rest of this life. […]

Preparation

For contemporary Christians, Advent is a time of readiness, an anticipation-filled awaiting of the birth of Jesus. But, what used to be a time of reflection and prayer is often replaced by a season of buying. The “bringing into total perfection” has morphed into bringing in more possessions. Road and internet-weary consumers choose something, anything, […]

Thanksgiving Blessings

Last night, I went to bed hungry. It was by choice, not by necessity. There were moments while lying in the darkened room that I thought about getting up, going into the kitchen, opening a pantry or refrigerator door, and choosing something to eat. But I didn’t. Instead, I thought about the 800 million people on our […]

Buddha Wisdom

I recently did some research on Siddhartha Gautama, often simply called, The Buddha. I’m not very familiar with Buddhism, but a conversation with someone important to me regarding whether the human experience requires significant (maybe continual) suffering. created the desire to learn more.  Gautama was raised in a life of wealth but left opulence behind […]

The Twelve

Twelve —often considered the “perfect” number.  In the Judeo-Christian tradition, twelve is symbolic of God’s authority and perfection. Biblically, there are 187 references, including Jacob’s twelve sons and the ancestors of Israel’s twelve tribes.  In ancient Greece, twelve gods of Olympus were worshiped. In Buddhism, there are twelve stages of existence (Nidanas).  Twelve lines create […]

Expansiveness

Tears—big, fat tears, the kind that makes some men uncomfortable, and many women sigh—rolled down his cheeks. He laid on a hospital bed, his life nearing the end, spending precious moments with the daughter who sat next to him—this daughter who wasn’t his and was always his. He was only in his sixties. He talked about his beloved wife. […]

Thinking, Being Human & Keeping The Glass Half-Full

I often wonder what I’m “supposed” to be doing in this life.  I think a lot, not necessarily a good thing, mind you. Overthinking makes it hard to be successful at meditating and sleeping, and the downside of over-analyzation. In the journey of attempting to “slow my brain down,” I’ve realized that we can over-think things so much that […]

Tuesday Morning (5:20 am)

It’s 5:20 on a Tuesday morning. I tossed and turned for a while before recognizing that I wasn’t going to quiet my brain—that’s decided to run a marathon—so I got up. The air outside is still, almost too still. I sit at my desk with my tea and type away as if the world’s on […]

Exhausted

A thirty-something woman confided that she’s perpetually exhausted—stressful career, young children, constant hamster wheel. It’s tough to manage “Super Mom,” “Stellar Business Person,” and “Amazing Homemaker” at the same time! Of course, she’s tired. Something’s gotta give. I often forget to practice conscious breathing instead, endeavoring to physically and mentally “do everything.” I actually catch myself holding my breath sometimes! Talk about going so […]

What Matters Most

When my granddaughter, Lauren, was ten, she read a story to me about a family with three young children that survived the devastating Joplin, Missouri tornado of 2011. I’m sure that life has never been quite the same for them. The recognition of “what they could have lost” probably still dances through their minds every […]

A Matter of Life or Death

My brother, Bob, diagnosed with his first brain tumor at sixteen, died when he was forty. He beat insurmountable odds. In the last years of his life, he was wheelchair-bound, and his brain lived in the past. Incredibly, through all the surgeries and pain, he never once complained or uttered, “why me?” A life that blessed many […]

Abundance

Abundance:bounty, thriving, plentiful, overflowing Last night, I had two very unusual dreams unlike most of what I usually conjure up (dark or violent, which has never made sense since I don’t read or watch anything with violence). When I woke, the only word that came to mind was “abundance.” What is good, positive, uplifting in […]

Perfect Imperfection

I sat at my desk, in the still darkness of pre-dawn, remembering the past twenty-four hours. Yesterday, I was part of “She Nailed It,” Habitat For Humanity of the Lehigh Valley’s “all women, nail-hammering, relay competition,” which raises funds for affordable housing.  In 2012, when my friend, Betsy, invited me to join the HFH volunteer […]

Life Lessons

• Walk outside whenever you’re able—without music pounding in your ear or eyes glued to the blacktop—listen to the birds and the swaying trees; notice, fully, what’s right around you. • Life is a series of takes and miss-takes. It’s baby-stepping, learning as we go, and taking giant leaps of faith that, sometimes, seem so monumental that […]

Swan Song

Yesterday, I attended the funeral of a very dear friend. Miriam, a beautiful woman, lived a beautiful ninety-three years. The funeral home was filled with those of us who love her. Three pastors officiated at the service. All four of her children, and two of her grandchildren, told stories of their life experiences with this […]

Mourning Losses/Morning Losses

One early morning, I sat at my desk, a notebook in front of me, a stack of books on my left, and big, hot tears running down my face. I was thinking about how fast the decades have flown by, aware of how our perception of time changes as we age. Years ago, my granddaughter […]

Peer Pressure

As children, your peers were likely close to your age, but as adults, they’re usually people who have similar backgrounds, social statuses, lifestyles, or abilities, regardless of age.  Peer pressure occurs when you’re influenced to adopt views, goals, or behaviors matching your peer group.  We often think of teenagers when we hear “peer pressure” because […]