The Building Blocks of a Peaceful Home

Peaceful doesn’t just happen—not with relationships, careers, day-to-day life, and, definitely, not with homes. Some relationships seem so tumultuous that I wonder how those folks get through the day, and I know those who always seem to be “in the right place” with those they love.  I imagine most people would leave their jobs without hesitation if they could swing it financially, but there are the blessed few […]

Forging Ahead

Life’s current reality can be incredibly burdensome, making it challenging to get past that long enough to believe in fresh starts. Have you ever wished you could rewrite the script? There have been times when (with the luxury of days passed) I’ve thought, “I wish I would have done things differently.” Perhaps I would have […]

A Hope-Filled New Year

“Happy New Year!” These words—maybe this year more than ever—hold so much hope as we pray for freedom from the ravages of a virus, an opportunity to heal a hurting nation, and awareness of the value of each human. A fresh start and the ability to look forward is beautiful—it’s like stepping into a new, […]

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 […]

Christmas Lights and Silent Nights

Yesterday, I went to an appointment, then did some online shopping, caught up in the secular Christmas that it seems most people “celebrate.” I, possibly like others, sometimes forget what really matters. silent night, holy night It’s a cold December—but not yet officially winter—morning. I take off my glasses and write with a pen propelled […]

The Perfect Christmas Tree

Stories about Christmas abound. Some of them are filled with the sadness of missing a loved one. Others recall times when we were far from home, or Christmas didn’t turn out how we painted it in our Currier and Ives imaginations. Mostly, however, the stories we share are the happy ones. This is one of […]

Peace During the Holidays

The antonym for “peaceful” is “unpeaceful.” Okay, that’s fair, but I was thinking of something a little more descriptive like: “chaotic,” “tense,” exhausting,” or “stressful.” What emotions do you experience when you don’t feel at peace? Countless situations can be responsible for creating the opposite of a calm and tranquil home:• full-time caregiving for someone with a debilitating physical […]

Thankful—Full of Thanks

THANKFULconscious of benefits received, relieved that something has (or hasn’t) happened, contented, appreciative, grateful благодарно, reconnaissant, אסיר תודה, grato, 감사한, riconoscente, agradecido, 感謝している, dankbaar, ευγνώμων, 感激 “Thankful” is expressed and felt differently. Many of us have the privilege of being grateful for people who love us, health, a career (or retirement), a roof over our heads. In […]

Unbalanced and Running on Empty

Balance is a state of equilibrium: stability, calmness, harmony, serenity. But, for many, that equilibrium is missing. My life has been unbalanced. I’ve often not spent as much time honoring and caring for the core of me as I’ve spent dealing with body and mind matters. (Have you experienced that?) Professional jugglers know the importance of balance in […]

Truth & Dare

“Truth or Dare” is something I’ve never played, having heard too many stories of young (and not-so-young) people divulging personal information or performing dangerous, humiliating, or out of their comfort zone “dares.” (What we sometimes do to others, or allow them to make us do, is heartbreaking.) Unlike the game “truth or dare,” I’m talking about truth and dare. […]

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 […]

Life and Awareness

IIn the winter, when I was very young, I would curl up, as small as I could, next to the bathtub as it filled with water. There wasn’t yet central heat in our home, and the little bathroom was a room without that luxury. The house was heated by coal delivered down a chute and […]

Tree People

This idea started with a simple concept: “Love songs aren’t just for others. Love songs are for you too.” But, as I thought about the number of people who don’t truly experience love or struggle with trusting love, I realized that, for many, it’s often really tough just to get to the place of self-love. Sadly, some […]

Greener Grass and Rosier Glasses

When “the grass seems greener on the other side,” you look over the “fence”—literally or proverbially—and see your neighbor’s “lawn” as healthier than yours. But, just like us worn-down mortals with eroded and less-than-perfect parts of us, you’re often not close enough to recognize the crabgrass, brown patches, or bare places. As humans, we often have a bias […]

Rainbows and Wizards and Yellow Brick Roads

The chorus to “Somewhere Over the Rainbow”➀ has been taking up space in my mind. The background to Dorothy’s adventures, its lyrics, both haunting and hopeful, also spoke to the world as it was in 1939. Then, as I was going through old, hand-written pages of notes, I found this analogy, between The Wizard of Oz (the movie) […]

In Pursuit of Being Real

In Margery Williams’ The Velveteen Rabbit, a stuffed toy is given to a boy as a Christmas gift, but soon forgotten, set aside in favor of other “more expensive” toys. The older and wiser, Skin Horse, befriends the rabbit, teaching him about love and becoming real. “Real…. is a thing that happens to you. When a […]

Bridges & Life

There are times in life when you’re “on the same page” as another person, seeming to grow together in tandem. Maybe, your relationship blossomed from acquaintance to dear friend, or from friendship to significant partner. Perhaps, you met someone and instantly knew you were kindred spirits. (How wonderful is that type of synchronicity?) For many, however, the path […]

Hatred, Violence, Pain, How Do We Move Forward? (Part 2)

Today, I intended to share the answers I collected from questions regarding the impact of COVID-19. However, responses are still pouring in from: “With all the hatred, violence, anger, pain, and sadness going on right now, how do you think we move forward; how do we make a difference?” This is a big picture life question—a […]

Walking Through the Dark (and COVID-19)

Many years ago, I experienced moving in and out of the dark. Someone I love was in crisis, and there were times I feared a tragic outcome. It was terrifying and tested my strengths and beliefs. I was walking in the dark. But, in that dark, there was still light. I was continually shown the […]

Choices

Choices; this seven-letter word sets the course for your life. Choosing moves energy, creating change that sets what you want into motion. Choices empower you, so it’s critical to discern what you desire and require in your life. You choose every day by weighing the pros and cons, considering alternatives, and then taking action. A considerable amount of this goes on […]

Moving From Overwhelmed to Serene and Peaceful, Part I

Do you ever feel overwhelmed, exhausted, or like you’re carrying the weight of the world on your shoulders? Does it sometimes seem that despite how hard you work, how often you “put yourself out there,” or how much you love, it just isn’t enough? Are you ever on the brink of hopelessness, imagining that if you […]

Life Right Now—Sadness and COVID-19

COVID-19 has infected us not only physically. During the past two days, we talked about spirituality, fear, and superheroes. Today, let’s tackle sadness. There are, obviously, a lot of things to be sad about right now. We can’t help experiencing unhappiness in challenging times. But, we can work to move through it. Sit quietly with […]

Life Right Now—Fear, Superheroes, and COVID-19

FEAR Discussions about COVID-19 have become part of our daily conversations. I’m not suggesting that we hide from the updates, but we need an awareness of how being bombarded by this news, on every media platform, is affecting us. Fear has become one of our songs, and there’s a good reason for that. Some of […]

Poetry for Thought

CHOICES peace, peace, precious peace pain, pain, poignant pain   hope, hope, honored hope hate, hate, horrid hate   love, love, lasting love loss, loss, lonely loss   faith, faith, fervent faith fear, fear, fractious fear   peace, hope, love, faith pain, hate, loss, fear  all of these are part of life which of these […]

Forging Ahead

During a time of upheaval, it can be tough to remain positive. Uncertainty is unnerving, but we have a responsibility to, now possibly more than ever, live into our highest selves. One way of doing that is by looking through a different lens. Since many of us are out of work, working from home or leaving […]