A genuinely good soul …

My beautiful green-eyed girl Libs is 16 years old today. She was born into this world to a room full of laughter (no joke!). Her birth was like a party and life has been that way ever since! I remember when I first held her and I felt an unexplainable familiarity with her. Like I had held her my whole life. She fit perfectly into my arms, my heart and our family. We wouldn’t be US without HER. Libs is one of the funniest people I have ever known. She is my JOY! I love how she sees and greets the world. She is REAL and honest. She has always been my justice-seeker and she is one of the fairest people you will ever know. She is a gifted artist and sings like an angel. And she is brilliant. But most of all, Libs is kind. She has a precious heart for others. Compassion lives in every fiber of this girl’s being and I am SO SO SO proud to be her mom.

Well, I hope you all have a day where you celebrate a genuinely good soul!!!

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Clowns and circuses …

Many years ago I made the decision to not engage in anyone else’s “drama”. Meaning that if someone is trying to upset me I simply ignore them. If someone is behaving in a way to get me to react, on their level, I just don’t. And I have to say that this decision has brought me A LOT of peace of mind and no regrets.

This was definitely not easy to do in my younger years but it is now. Age, wisdom and maturity are good things! I’m not saying that I don’t initially get upset when people act unpleasantly toward me or do things that I don’t like. I do. But it doesn’t last long. And don’t get me wrong, I will confront someone when they have really “crossed a line” particularly when it can effect my children. However, I have become a pro at not getting sucked into situations that don’t suit me. Reacting poorly in response to someone else’s bad behavior is just not who I am or who I ever want to be. If someone is going to “put on a good show” I just remove myself from their audience. Which is really easy to do on social media with “hiding”, “unfriending”, and “blocking”. HA! But I’ve found that this is pretty easily done in REAL life too. I tend to be calm and rather “matter-of-fact” so I’m sure that this helps. And I actually enjoy taking the “high road” because it makes the other person’s efforts look that much worse! But honestly, I refuse to give a person like that my time and energy. My life, my heart, my mind and my soul are much to valuable for that. So when another unpleasant situation or person enters my life, I will remain on my path of joy and genuineness. And I will chose to sit happily, in my own skin, with my original thoughts, ideas and decisions. Knowing in my heart that I may have nothing to gain by my actions (or rather, in actions), but more importantly, I will have nothing to lose … especially myself.

Well, I hope you all have a day where you don’t let the clowns pull you into their circus!!!

Wander …

Traveling is wonderful. I enjoy the planning of it and the excitement leading up to leaving just can’t be beat. I love seeing new places and revisiting places that hold fond memories in my heart. It’s all GOOD. But there is also something that I have come to appreciate even more than our planned and perfected traveling. It’s the flexibility we have adopted to reroute and change directions. I absolutely love when we choose curiosity and adventure over organized plans. There is freedom in drifting away from what is “likely” and I have found that random discoveries often help me untether my mind from expectations. I find so much joy in this! I know the thought of traveling like this sounds a bit uncomfortable to some people. Nomadic, perhaps. It certainly requires some retraining of your brain and a bit of wild abandon. But I have found that these experiences have always been worth my initial discomfort.

Well, I hope you all have a day where you wander!!!

It’s a wonderful world …

We have spent the past few days along the California Coast and we plan on seeing a whole lot more of it before we head home. It’s been exciting to see new things and to share new experiences with my children. I have told them since birth, to appreciate moments not things. I have shown them that sharing time with the people they love and adventuring with them will bring them more joy than any material treasure ever will. And I have taught them that this planet we call home will give them the opportunity for those moments and that joy, if they just take the time to explore it.

Well, I hope you all had a day where you got to experience our wonderful world!!!

Go for it …

What makes us not pursue our heart’s desire? I know the answers are vast on this one. Fear. Guilt. Time. Obligations. Money. I am sure that most of us can come up with a list a mile long. I know I have! And I’d say that probably most are valid and reasonable excuses. Reasons that make our decision, to not chase our dreams, absolutely understandable. BUT, if I’ve leaned one thing in my five decades it’s this … every time I’ve been given one teeny tiny arrow pointing me in the direction of my goals, it has been a good enough reason to make them a priority. And ultimately it has all brought me a lot of joy.

Well, I hope you all have a day where you GO FOR IT!!!

Still JOYFUL …

Every year I come up with a new birthday mantra. A short personal saying that I believe will help me shape the next year of my life. Some years they come quickly to me. Other years they take a bit of time and reflection. This was definitely one of those years that required some thought. And I’ll tell you why.

I don’t think that one simple saying can ever describe how grateful I am to turn 50 years old today. I honestly want to scream it from the roof tops that I MADE IT! There were years that I was skeptical because of my family history. And moments, when my personal health seemed grim, my pain was unbearable and I felt so ill, that I made peace with death. Trust me folks, encephalopathy is no joke. I’ve been in that ugly place where I had to face my own mortality. I have had to surrender to what was happening to me because I was too weak to do anything more. But I have also felt God’s beautiful grace when He blessed me with full healing. TWICE. I know not everyone is that “lucky”. But for some reason I was. I was given more time to live life with the people that I love … and I simply couldn’t be more thankful. Again, “thankful” just doesn’t seem like enough. There is no word that even comes close to describe how it feels to be HERE. To breath, to laugh, to love and to LIVE in this moment is just about the best feeling I have ever known. And I am not going to waste one second of it. No way. No how. God gave me THIS. My life. My story. My miracle. And not being able to describe how I feel about all of this is incredible. I am 50 and life still leaves me speechless. It can still completely consume me with emotion leaving me with no other choice than to just be IN IT and FEEL IT. And if that isn’t the best gift EVER, I just don’t know what is.

So, I guess that leaves me with only one choice for my new birthday mantra. This year I will continue to do what I have always done, to try to see the best in everyone and in every situation. I will continue to carry hope in my heart. And I will celebrate every season, the good and the bad, that I am blessed to experience. Because I know that life is precious. Very, very precious. Every. Single. Moment.

Well, I hope you all have a year where you are STILL JOYFUL!!!

Joy in the journey …

Today we celebrated my son George! He is 19 years old and all I keep asking myself is HOW?!?! No matter how old he becomes or how tall he grows, George will always be my precious little baby. And the sweetest little boy who gave me the best and tightest hugs in the world. But as much as I have enjoyed watching George grow up, I’m finding it absolutely wonderful to see him take on the world and become the man he has envisioned. Being his mom has been one of the most beautiful experiences I have ever known. And I am so grateful that God chose me to walk through life with him.

Well, I hope you all have a day where you find joy in the journey!!!