In a Year’s Time

We often hear about what a difference a year makes…or a day or a week or an hour. But does it truly resonate when we hear that expression? Most of the time i think it goes in one ear and out the other as we understand the meaning but not the point. I think if this time last year. I was weary and still shattered, soul tired and just trying to keep my emotional head above water.

The compound was still under repair, though that was getting closer to completion. I had argued with the insurance company that they had indeed made a $10,000 mistake in their favor. And eventually they had to admit that they had. I was broke from paying for everything and and felt utterly, completely, unmistakably alone. I once saw a picture of a tree, alone standing in the storm, and I felt exactly like that. Ugly, broke and beyond exhausted. I knew I deserved love, but who in the world was left? There was no one. Or so I thought. But I could not have been more wrong.

Feeling completely alone, so alone that not even God could find you is a hard place to be. But it was not to last long. The start of the love was Thanksgiving, when I took my cousin up on her offer to spend the holiday at her house. And so I did. And there, in the middle of their home, in the middle of this small town, in the middle of the holiday dinner, I found more love than I knew existed. There were open arms and hugs and smiles and laughs and conversations.

And for the first time in over two years, I did not feel alone. For the first time in over two yers, I felt loved.

And from that love that was given to me, a small hope was borne. A rejuvenation of sorts. It is amazing what a little love can do. It can bring a broken soul back to life. And so it did. In that house, with my cousins, I found my light again. I found my smile. I found the Sun. And I grew, from that day on, knowing that I was not alone, and that there was more love out there in the world for me that I could possibly imagine. And it was my job to find and courage that love into a beautiful life.

But it all started a year ago. And like putting fire to gasoline, it caught and spread. And nowm that love light that was lit on that day, burns a warm flame at my hearth. And I have them to thank.

Life is short. Never underestimate what a little bit if love can do, And never underestimate the miracles and growth that can happen in a year.

Glean the Gifts

It is November, the month of thanks. And our feeds are flooded with thankfulness and reminders of how sweet life is. We make lists of all that we are thankful for. And indeed, we should be thankful everyday, even for the small things. Because no matter how bad we have it, someone out there has it worse. Because the thinks that we take for granted every day, someone out there is praying for those very things.

We all go through hard times in life no matter how well put together we are. We all feel pain, loss, frustration, disappointment, depression, panic even or fear. But we get through them, mostly.And I have long had a theory in life that no matter what happened, we should always look at what we have learned from an experience, no matte how painful it might have been.  Much easier in theory that in practice.  But this exercise brought me right back there. I find it is this type of mindset that keeps one from getting  bitter.

And we have all met those bitter people, who know every morning when they get up that the world is against them in one way or another. Why do people insist on hanging onto their pain? I don’t know, Because it seems to take a lot of energy to be angry all the time. And quite frankly, I don’t have the time for that.

But I do have time to participate in a week a gratitude challenge. One the second day, the challenge was to think about a hard time in life and answer for questions about that time. My mind goes back to the 2.5 years after Mom died and all the challenges that followed. Taking care of my terminally ill father, him dying shortly after Mom,  estate issues, my extremely shattered heart, and lots of family drama (I swore I was going to see Jerry Springer pull up with a huge bucket of popcorn).

What did it teach me? It taught me that I was much stronger than I ever thought I was, that I could handle much more than I ever thought, and that I am kind of a bad ass. It taught me that you can cut toxic people out of your life even if they are family. It taugh me that I do not need anyone’s permission or approval to live my life as I see fit. It taught me to walk away from those who are so bitter that all they can do is hate. It taught me  that I am not responsible to other’s baggage and issues, and leave them with those whom they belong. It taught me the true importance of friends and having quality people in your life that truly care about you and will help you when you are too shattered to help yourself.

What other good things are happening right now? Amazing things are happening right now – a great career that i love, a wonderful move that will be a new beginning, Lots of love and also having the wonderful network of friends that I have built over the years. And all of those things are multiplying.

How could this hard time be a blessing in disguise? While I cannot say that losing my parens was a blessing, I can say that I have been extremely blessed since taking care of them. While this past year has been hard rebuilding my life, it is rebuilt on solid and fertile ground. I have taken all that I have learned and applied it to this amozing life and the new chapters that are to come.

What are the gifts of this situation? The gifts of the current situation are too many to list. I can say that I am blessed to have the gift of a clear conscience. As I move forward there is no one to hold my back, no ties to hold me down and the world is mine to make it whatever I want. Truly the possibilities are endless.  And I am excited.

And for all of these things, and much , much more, I have gratitude.

Life is short. So make it spectacular. And know that even the hard times, the harshest winters in life will bear fruit. Because when the spring comes we appreciate it that much more.


So I am going to step out of my normal circle and write about current events. The whole Kaepernick football thing. I don’t follow sports, never have, never will.  But I do have a basic understanding of being spoiled and entitled, which seems to be the main theme.

First, his protest is noble. But managers and recruiters don’t like controversy – unless you have the talent to get away with it. Dennis Rodman for example, everyone knew he was a controversial freak – but an incredibly talented one.  So everyone overlooked the controversy, and chalked it up to Roman being Eccentric.

In the latest Kaepernick soap opera, he was here in Atlanta.  There were all 32 teams invited to watch him, and they were all planning to be there Has that even ever happened before – all 32 teams interested in seeing what one player can do?

So he had all of the teams willing to watch him and give him a chance. and what does he do? He insists that all of the press and TV cameras be there for “full disclosure'” whatever that means. So he only wants the NFL teams to see him in front of a whole bunch of cameras??

The NFL said no, no cameras, no press, just the players we want to see and us. What does Kaepernick do? He moves the location of his practice AN HOUR before hand.  The problem is that this is Atlanta, and where he was going to practice is about an hour away from where he moved. With the late notice, only 8 out of the original 32 teams could make it. And after all of the disrespect of switching at the last minute, they don’t seem to be interested.

So he complains and whines, they aren’t giving him a chance.

He had a chance and he wanted the cameras instead. Because if he really wanted to be in the NFL, why would he care about the cameras?

There are thousands of boys who work hard and dream of being drafted to the NFL and would give their right arm to play. There are thousands of boys who dream of the chance to have ALL 32 teams represented at a practice. And Kaepernick wastes the opportunity, the gift?

He instead is going to behave badly and whine about the results. If he wanted to play, he should be the first on, the last off, play when and where he is scheduled and at least TRY not to be difficult to work with. There are consequences to your actions, and if you waste chances by being whiny, entitled or just plain difficult to work with, no one will want to work with you.

He doesn’t want it bad enough and the opportunity he wasted should be given to someone who does.

Press Pause

It seems that my blog has been on pause as of late. And that is the thing about life and this time of year – we get busy. So busy sometimes that we forget to, or simply don’t have the time to “record” all of our thoughts and happenings.

We get so busy living life that we don’ have a lot of time to record it. And that is not always a bad thing. Sometimes it is a wonderful thing, as is the case here. Life has been so full of projects, family. Love and planning that I have not had too much time to write.

And soon there will be packing, and a move added to the To Do list. As wonderful as it is, it can be a bit overwhelming as I figure out what to do next is the list of to Dos. And there has been some relaxing, lots of laughter, great food, traveling and fun as well. Because no matter how busy you are, if you can add a little fun into the mix, you should. There has been snuggling with the fury babies, waking up slowly, amazing cups of coffee and long conversations about what is coming next. There have been dinners and outings, meeting new friends and catching up with old ones. It is the perfect way to wrap up this year.

Life has been busy, amazing, and exhausting, but also magic. And life is too short for anything short of magic.

Chicken Soup for More than the Soul

Chicken soup for the soul. We have all heard about the series of books, but honestly, when is chicken soup not for the soul? It is amazing comfort food, tastes delicious and is usually made with love. And if you have ever been lucky enough to have some homemade soup made for you, then you are truly blessed.

And indeed, I was blessed this past week with a huge pot of homemade chicken soup.

It is winter and yes, it even gets cold here sometimes too. There is an arctic blast moving through the country and we are getting our share of it. It had been a long week and I wasn’t feeling great. A hectic schedule and little sleep had made me look and feel like a zombie. When I walked in my warm cozy house smelling something close to heaven. It made me smile and made the stress melt away of my weary body.

Homemade. Chicken. Soup. A big pot of it on the stove. Fresh ingredients chopped up and stirred in with love. No one has made me soup since my Mom died in 2016. In June 0f that years, not even a month before she died, Mom made me my favorite taco soup, and froze it for me. I kept those little frozen containers and cherished them as I ate them on special occasions for a little over a year. That soup was love in a bowl and a hug from beyond.

And then this past weekend happened. And I had a moment where I actually sat and cried over a bowl of soup. It is truly the little things in life that add up to all of the big. Comfort food, healing me from the inside out one warm spoonful at a time. After I had been especially grouchy from being so exhausted. Being given Grace in a bowl, I just lost it, because those little things show a tremendous amount of love. And compassion.

There is still some in the fridge and I’ll eat it tonight too as the temperatures continue to dip below freezing. But my heart will be warm.

Life is short. Spend it with those who make you feel loved. Spend it with those who fill your life and your heart with warmth of all the little things. That is what feeds the soul. Love.

The Chew

We are all guilty of +biting off more than we can chew at some point in our lives, sometimes many times in our lives. At first, we think whatever is a great idea. In theory. But in practice we see it in a completely different light. And then what? Well, at that point we have a choice of bailing or seeing it through.

This is where I find myself. In theory signing up for all of this and more seemed like a good idea, even a great idea. And now that things are in full swing, I am wondering if that is true. I am tired and grouchy, or maybe those are more from lack of sleep and PMS (Yes, I said it, I went there).

And really what was I thinking, taking so much on? Juggling jobs, my company, packing and moving, and a social,life, and taking care of a house and….!! I was thinking that I must be Super Woman, able to handle 24 tasks in a half day…

But I think I might just stick it out of r a bit. Because success in life takes hard work, it takes late night sometimes and it takes perseverance. Whatever it is, you have to want it bad enough that failure is not an option. And that has been my motto since birth practically.

We have also heard that everything you want is on the other side of fear, and that you have to get out of your comfort zone because you cannot have an extraordinary life doing ordinary things. And I will never settle for ordinary.

Many times when things get busy it is because we are laying the groundwork for change and growth in our lives. And when that growth is coming, sometimes we must work furiously to make sure that the foundation can support it. But it is worth it. When we can sit back, rest and enjoy that foundation and growth. It is truly a magical moment when we see all we worked so hard for come to fruition.

And indeed, this is a time of tremendous growth in my life, and a strong foundation is needed. There are some things you can skip and skimp on in life but getting a firm foundation for growth and developments in your life is not one of those areas. So, take the time to make sure that everything is solid so that you don’t build a beautiful life on unsettled and unstable ground. You want to bui8ld what lasts, and that means the groundwork must be done first.

Change is coming, so biting off more than I can shew is not an option. Hard work is required to make dreams reality and so it is time to roll up my sleeves.

Life is short. If you find that you have bitten off more than you can chew, take a few steps back to evaluate if it is worth the work. If it’s not, walk away from some of it. If it is, then get to chewing, and maybe ask for help if needed. Building a beautiful life is worth the work.


Travel is one of the many things that makes life wonderful. To have the opportunity to travel, especially with those you love, to see new things in new places and have new experiences, fuel the curiosity on our souls. We must always be curious, always strive to learn and see and feel the world around us. Traveling is one way to do that.

A few years ago, I had the chance to take several trips that would have been wonderful, but family obligations kept me from those opportunities. Now that I am not encumbered but such responsibilities, the freedom to travel brings many opportunities that I have recently taken.

One such trip was to San Diego. While I had visited California several years ago, I had never visited seen that area. It was a quick whirlwind trip and much fun was had.  There was laughter and good food, new sights and wonderful thoughts.

Friday was the USS Midway, an aircraft carrier turned museum. It was fascinating to see the scale of the vessel, to see the equipment and where the sailors lived. It was fascinating to see the planes and bombers from WWII. They had stories of the planes and the pilots who flew them.  And it made me think of my Dad, and how much he studied the WWII planes and warships.

And then we went into one of the engineering and equipment rooms and I saw the kinds of computers my mother worked on. She sued to describe the computers, with dashboards of unlabeled lights flashing, a place where codes where read and sent out, and also about reels of tapes with information.  All of it was right there, and I could see for the first time, the kind of computers and hardware my mother used.

And we went into a Russian submarine, I think the very one that was in the Cuban Missile Crisis, which my mother worked when in the Pentagon. She was doing the cryptanalysis – working on intercepting and interpreting the Russian codes. So to be there, in that submarine that I had heard stories about from my Mom, was incredible.

And in those moments, I wished my parents could have been there, could have seen it all. But I guess they already did, in their day. But the stories they could tell, and the expression on their faces would have been even more amazing. So I looked, and listened, and was amazed, and smiled. I appreciate my parents more and more every day.

After the history lessons, there were many miles of walking, great meals, laughter, exploration of the area and surrounding islands and a very thankful heart.  Life is an adventure, and you never know when adventure may find you. When it does, go for it. I took care of what I needed to do, and then, even more adventures came around. SO if you can’t go now, don’t worry. Life may be short, but there are always more opportunities.  And sometimes, because our view can get so myopic, we forget how big the world is, and how many chances we get. And we get many.

Life is short. Do what you need to do, then take time to adventure and play afterward. The reward for a well handled life, are more chances for adventure.

The Beauty of the Human Condition

Maybe what makes us beautiful as human beings is the knowledge that deep down, where the Soul meets the heart, and the Heart beats quietly, that no matter what darkness is around us, that light will always run through us. Maybe it’s that what makes us beautiful is the belief, the love, the audacity, the Bravery, the honesty, to truly believe that the light will always conquer the dark and that we will always persevere. Maybe that is the key not only to the Human spirit, but the Human Condition.

Into the Groove

Me and Madonna, we’re close. Thick as thieves, we are..

There comes a time on all of our lives that we finally feel 100%, or even 110%. Maybe it is after a divorce, or a job loss, or other rough life events. And those life events can take a lot of out of, and healing is required even after the events are long over. Many people are under the impression that as soon and the bad event or tough time is over, then we bounce back immediately. But that is not the case, at least I have found.  We still need time to recover and heal. Get out feet back under us and catch up on all that we missed while we were out dealing with life.

And is it any wonder?  When you are going through a hard time, you are in survival mode. Your time and effort go into taking care of the very real hardships that are on your plate and there isn’t any room for anything else. It is amazing the amount of energy it takes to survive during those times. You cannot enjoy a pretty day, because you are taking care of one crisis after another, making sure all bases are covered.  When in this mode you cannot notice all the little wonderful, beautiful small miracles in life because it is a miracle you can even get through the day.

And then, we heal. We look around and see and hear laughter, only to realize it is our own. And we linger in the mirror, because we missed our own smile, and it is beautiful to us. And we go on about our lives, looking up, looking around at all the things we missed, ever thankful.

But in this day and age of global warming, painful politics and the fact that the world is going to end ion 12 years, is there any such thing as happiness? And if so, where do we find it? There are thousands of books on this topic, and even more memes on social media proclaiming we must first find happiness within ourselves. And this is true – up to a point.

What, you need the outside to keep you happy inside?!? Well, just hear me out.

No matter how together and peaceful we are on the inside, life happens., and a little drama will happen in everyone’s life.  Because there are things that are out of our control. A loss of a job, losing a loved one, or a relationship, are all things that we cannot control. Toxic people, whether family, friends or coworkers can wreak havoc to our inner peace. Because we cannot control what others do. And when any of these things happen, or several happen one right after the other, it can throw us off balance.  And there is a natural [process to getting over traumatic and stressful events.  We may get angry, sad, depressed, defensive, hurt…or any of the other many human emotions.

One of the major keys to happiness is to make your exterior world as peaceful as possible. Get rid of toxic people who suck life and energy out of you. Going to a job you hate? Work hard to find another one. In a bad relationship? Leave, or kick them out. Trust me, it’s worth it. Extrapolating what is important to you and losing anything that is irrelevant or impedes happiness and peace will expedite healing. Drama and tough times will still happen, but those times will show you your priorities and help with the clean out once you are ready.

And when all those exterior issues have been silenced, it will be much easier to move forward in a substantial way. It is hard to keep yourself grounded when there is nothing but quicksand around you. Once you get out of that quicksand, you can then regain footing on solid ground on which to rebuild your foundation for life. You just have to steady yourself enough to leave in the meantime.

And when you do the work, both interior and exterior, maintenance becomes easier. It is as if the sun shines just to tell you how beautiful the world it is. And when you have been through this kind of journey, the trees can make you laugh, the wind can bring you to tears and a flower can tough you deeply. You appreciate so many of the little things. And you become protective of your peace and less likely to let anyone disturb it. Because you fought for it and earned it. You find your groove again, your rhythm, yourself and your happiness.

And this is where I find myself now – back in the groove.  It is not just that life is going well. It is that I am doing well. I am healed from all that the past brought.  I have let go of what I carried – the pain, the responsibility, the anger, the heartbreak, and you. Yes, I have even let go of you too. And I step into the groove, into the future of whatever this life has to give me.

And it shows.  Doors are opening up for me, opportunities and goodness. Love in all of its forms, in all of its splendor, is here for my tasting. I am laughing more than I have in years. I am breaking out in spontaneity dance, walking on my tiptoes and singing in the shower. I am smiling and feeling wonderful. I am functioning at more than 100%, but then I do have some time to make up for.  And it feels so good.

It is the start of the 11th month, and I am so excited for that this next year has to bring. Already there are plans in the making that will set it up for a spectacular ending of this year, and a wonderful beginning to the next. All I have to do is walk through the door.

But it has been a long road, a battle, so to speak. And I have done a lot of work, a lot of everything. And now I plan to enjoy what that work, what all of, has given me. Because I have earned it.

Life is short. Work hard, play hard, love hard and believe with all of your heart, that it will all be worth it. Because it is.

Less a Day of Worry

So many people fear getting older. Another year, another wrinkle, another pound, another gray hair. In this day and age of old is out and younger is best, can it be possible to be happy about aging? Absolutely.

Looking back, what a difference a year makes. This time last year, I was warried and worried, dealing with the repairs to the family compound from the Category 5 hurricane. I think about all that has happened in this past year, and the promise of another year of getting older, as I feel the new pains in my body and hear the new sounds from my bones. And yet., I am happy and grateful for each year. I am not afraid of getting older, never have been.

How can I not be worried about the life or the future? The way I see it, worry is almost a badge of honor these days. If you aren’t awake at night worried, then you aren’t anyone…and do you even have a life? If you aren’t worried then you are obviously not an important person, because important powerful, people are always worried.

Yet, I sleep well. Oh, I still, have my list of irrational worries – like do I have enough laundry detergent for everything? Or that I don’t think there are enough sit ups in the world to give me a six pack. Or did I remember to turn the coffee pot off this morning? Or did my cats will bring more gifts of snakes, chipmunks, or mice? And I start to worry that maybe there is something wrong with me. There must be something wrong with me if I am not worried, right?

Wrong. I think that sometimes we worry ourselves right out of a happy life. Let’s face it, there will always be problems and issues in life, because rarely is everything perfect.  But that doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy it anyway.  And those things are going to be there whether we worry about them or not. Legitimate worry can be channeled into positive action. But unnecessary worry keeps us from sleeping and loving life.

Take a deep breath. Ask yourself if whatever it is will matter in 1 year, 5 years, ten years from now? Most of the time the answer will be no. Because our lives could be very different in 10 years, 5 years, even 1 year, even 6 months from now.

And maybe I say this after the wisdom of living 46, almost 47 years. Because each day is a gift and you don’t want to spoil it with all kinds of worry about things you can’t change. Enjoy the process of getting older. Society says we should worry about those aches and pains, vanity says we should worry about those wrinkles…but that worry only steals our joy for today. And I have never been one to listen to what society says anyway. Maybe I am getting rebellious in my years. Or maybe I am just thankful for each day, and the opportunity to have more wrinkles.

Life is short. Work hard. And if it won’t matter in 5 years, take a deep breath and do the best you can. If it really is about the journey as much as the destination, then you have to find the joy in there somewhere. Celebrate life, getting older, and tell worry to go bother someone else. You are too busy enjoying getting older and better and happier.



Maybe what makes us beautiful as human beings is the knowledge deep down where the Soul Meets the heart and the Heart beats quietly, that no matter what darkness is around us that light will always run through us. Maybe it’s that what makes us beautiful is the belief, the love, the audacity, the face, The Bravery, the honesty, to truly believe that the light will always conquer the dark.

May the Psalm be With You

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.

He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.

He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.

Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.

I went from having this wonderful family to no family at all, to having nothing and no one. And the family that was left did nothing but taunt and ridicule, wanting to cause as much pain as possible. And they did. Until I was broken, so profoundly broken in so many more ways and so many more pieces than I ever had ever been before.

Because I grew up believing that family was everything and that nothing was more important than taking care of your family. And I had done that. And yet there I was alone. And I didn’t understand it all. I didn’t understand how I kept true to my beliefs and values that I was taught and still ended up with nothing and no one. I felt alone. And abandoned.

And I know that I got through it, but there’s so many things that I don’t remember. I know that I got up, handled things, and went to work and ate and breathed and did laundry and drove and talked to friends and everything that’s involved in living. Some memories are extremely vivid, but mostly it is all a blur of “non memories.

So I really don’t know how I got through it except to say I did it by the Grace of God. And I would hear my mother’s voice. I was a shattered, empty shell of myself, but I remember my mom’s voice whispering to me, telling me to remember that I “had a steel frame inside me.” And I clung to that, I clung to my mother’s voice. And I prayed.

But my heart broke a thousand times a day in a thousand different ways. And I wondered how can I have ended up here, completely alone? Because I had given all my time, money and resources to building up the family. I had taken care of everyone…and now they were all gone. I didn’t understand why they were so angry and bitter towards me or why they enjoyed hurting and lashing out.

I know now though: When someone is compassionate and kind, those of smaller intestinal stature are threatened and become jealous. They know that they can never rise to that level. They know that they do not possess within themselves the ability to care or love as deeply. They hate that, and anyone who reminds them of it.

This is not a pity party or woe-is-me tale, it is rather a story of victory and rebuilding, of overcoming great distress and difficulty. And it is a story of redemption and being rewarded by God’s Grace, and Karma.

It’s been hard though, and it’s been heartbreaking, and I never thought that I would have to go through something like that. I never thought that I have no immediate family or that I would be so distant from them. The happiest I’ve ever been in my entire life was when they were all coming to my house, and I was cooking dinner for all of them and it was wonderful. I still see pictures of those times and feel it in my stomach because I know that time will never be again. I know it was such a special time – in a different life because it just seems so distant and so different from the world that I live in and the reality that I have now.

I never used to understand the psalm 23: “though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.”. I never understood how the rod and the staff could comfort anyone because they seem to be weapons. Now I understand that the rod and the staff protected me. Because they are strong, because they don’t break, because they rule with compassion. And if God’s rod and staff weren’t going to break, then neither was I.

Sometimes I still struggle, as it has only been a little of two years. I’ve worked hard not end up bitter, like them. And I’ve completely redefined my definition of family. Now I understand that boundaries must be placed, or your family will destroy you from the inside out. And that’s really sad.

My new definition of family is the people you love and love you the best. I filled my world with amazing people and I’m not alone anymore.

I and I am thriving. And as I thrive, the rest of the Palms makes sense as well. Because He has restored my soul and led me rest by peaceful waters, after leading me through the hardest times of my life. And now, he gives me my dreams, makes them come true, as my enemies look on, reading this blog. My cup is running over with good fortune that He has given me. And Because I have done good and right by Him, he is rewarding me with the kind of happiness and joy that only he can give.

So basically, all those haters can suck it.

Life is short. Do good. Forget the rest. And celebrate hard when your compassionate heart is rewarded by the King Himself. And may the psalm be with you.