Be Safe, Be Kind..Be Amazing

Today is a year since the tragic death of a beautiful young woman I knew and loved.

She was a mom, a wife, a daughter, a friend…

Her life ended on a busy country road up north because of a man who made a really bad decision, to drive a car under the influence.

His choice.

By the grace of God, her three children, who were buckled in the back seat, survived the accident. But their mother did not.

She left an amazing legacy behind…her family…Those beautiful children, her husband, her sisters and parents and so many friends who loved her and miss her everyday.

So here is what I want to say… Live each day. Live it, Love it, Make a difference.

Each day we have is a gift. Life can be cut short in an instant so don’t waste it. Don’t throw away this precious gift by saying tomorrow or someday.

Find a balance in your life. Find what it is you love and do it.

I read a paragraph in a book years ago by James Patterson. Suzanne’s Diary for Nicholas. The words have stayed with me. If you’ve never read the book, I highly recommend it.

Imagine life is a game in which you are juggling five balls. The balls are called work, family, health, friends, and integrity. And you are keeping all of them in the air. One day you finally come to understand that work is a rubber ball. If you drop it, it will bounce back. The other four balls are made of glass. Drop one of those and you may irrevocably shatter it.’

Your job does not define you. Who you are …what you feel…how you act… What you do…defines you

Be safe…everything you do is your choice, no excuses

Be kind…make a difference

Be amazing…life is meant to be lived, not just worked…be amazing because you are!!!!

Starting Over…Hell Yes

It hit me at around 4:30 am this morning that it’s New Years Eve. I have been so darn busy that I kind of forgot. Then I remembered… I wasn’t going to do that anymore…Be that busy. Be so busy I would forget the important things. My excuse?… I got busy.

Out comes the white boards and my journal. It’s time to make a plan, set some goals, decide what I really want in life, What is and is not important. I think that’s the big one right there… What is important.

For me it’s family, those I love. It’s peace of mind, it’s knowing no matter what I’m trying to do, I give it my all and I believe in what I’m doing. It’s making a difference.

What isn’t important is wasting time. Wasting time on worrying about what should have been or what hasn’t even happened yet. It’s wasting time on people who try to trip you up, put you down, create drama and just plain make you feel bad. It’s saying tomorrow… someday… if only… I can’t…

The two greater words in any language are Yes and No

Yes… Yes I can do it, I can accomplish anything I set out to do

And

No…No I’m not going to take it any more.

You can start over any day or any minute you choose. It’s up to you.

For myself, it was at 4:30 this morning. I made a plan.

So goodbye to wasted time and the people who say I CAN’T

Good morning to a beautiful new life.

I got this!!!!!

Happy 2018

So this is Christmas…

I love the words to John Lennon’s song, And So Happy Christmas…..So this is Christmas…And what have you done…Another year over…And a new one just begun

As I watched my family eating dinner, laughing together, opening gifts and simply enjoying the evening with one another, it makes me reflect back.

I thought of all the Christmas’s past and the people that were a part of them. The loved ones who have died and friends who have come and gone, leaving imprints upon our hearts. I think of the struggles they’ve been through, the pain, the depression. I think of the joy and the love they’ve experienced, the way they have all grown into who they are now .

Christmas is a beautiful time of year for most of us. But for some it’s a lonely time.

I think of how I’ve been able to help those around me and how I can do more, how I can make a bigger difference in the days ahead. I want the holidays to be a wonderful time for everyone. That may be an impossibility but it’s my dream.

So this is Christmas…And what have you done…

I’m reaching out for change, starting with me. I’m doing what I can to make difference for those around me. I’m believing good shall prevail over the evil and I believe there are enough of us out there feeling the same way.

And together, we can make a difference.

Another Year over…And a new one just begun…

I’m letting go of that which does not work and those who are not meant to be in my life. I’m letting go of hurt and anger and pain. I’m remembering the yesterdays with love and acceptance. I’m walking forward, one step at a time. Tomorrow is a gift, it’s a promise of a new day. Imagine all that it can be.

So….HAPPY CHRISTMAS

Its the time of year

It’s that time of year again….I love the holidays. Getting together with family and friends, Dinners, parties, finding the perfect gift for everyone I love. And lets not forget the Christmas carols and all the Christmas movies. Hallmark channel has become my favorite lately.

But…It’s also the time of year that my day job becomes two jobs. I work myself beyond exhaustion because I don’t want to let anyone down. I’m also in the process of remodeling the lower level of my house, finishing my book, learning to navigate multi media, trying to spend every possible hour with my friend Peter, and stay healthy.

I’m out of breath thinking about it.

So… I’m learning to say no. I’m saying no to that which doesn’t make me smile and feel good. I’m saying no to the stuff which really doesn’t matter. I’m sticking with a sane work schedule (Sorry), not caring if the house isn’t white glove clean. I’m not baking cookies that I shouldn’t be eating and I’m not scrimping on getting enough sleep. I’m diligent about attending my yoga classes, eating clean and healthy and enjoying that glass of red wine. Instead of staying late every night, I’m gathering with good friends, laughing and reading with Peter, loving my grandkids and my crazy puppies and getting up at 5am everyday to write. I’m doing what matters to me and those I love.

 

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I’m starting every day with a smile and I’m going after what I want because life is supposed to be beautiful. It’s up to us to make it that way

When is it enough?

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I have been following Rachel Hollis and her amazing motivation video’s lately. If you have never heard of her, check it out on her website The Chic Site. She is so inspiring.

Last week, Rachel talked about the word enough. As in WE are enough– good enough, skinny enough, smart enough.  The meaning of ‘enough’ has been on my mind all week as a result, but in a little different way.

When is it that we have enough? What is enough? The biggest house on the block? the fastest, most expensive new car? Ten million in the bank? A condo in the Bahama’s (That was before the hurricane)? And when have we had enough?

The big question for me is when is it too much and what price do I have to pay for it? Don’t get me wrong, I dream of owning an Audi A5 convertible and the thought of wintering on a warm beach somewhere is, honestly, a slice of heaven, but when is the price I need to pay too much?

I find my self working until I’m completely exhausted week in and week out. I don’t have time to grocery shop, go to my beloved yoga classes, watch my grandchildren play or take my puppies for a long walk because there is no time. Family time? A social life? Going for a drive to check out the fall colors? Curl up and read a book? I tell myself  tomorrow, next week, next year. Then I work a little later at night, come in a few hours early in the morning, add an extra day to my week.

Bottom line? ‘Tomorrow’ is never going to come if I keep this up. The things I dream of doing will become ‘should have’s’ when it’s the end. It needs to stop…NOW.

I’m making a plan, a plan to get off the Hamster wheel.

I’m making a list.

What truly makes me happy? What brings me joy? When am I the most calm? When am I confident? What makes me laugh with abandon? What fills me with passion and determination?

What makes me cry? What will devastate me? What makes me rage?

Who am I? What are the 5 most important things in life to me?

Then I will look around me and clean house. Clear out the clutter

Not just in possessions but mentally as well. If it serves no purpose in my dreams, why hang on to it? I don’t need that funky sweater that has been hanging in my closet for years because I just might wear it some day. Nor do I need the third set of dishes to be used one day of the year. Likewise, the friends I only hear from when they need a favor. The rest of the time, they can’t be bothered to turn a message or call me just to say hi. Or how about the memories of rejection, ridicule and hurt. They really don’t have any value any more other than to cause pain. It’s time to let go of the excess.

Letting go…physically, mentally, emotionally…It will free up so much room for what you really want in your life.

I am enough and I have enough… more than enough. Cleaning house opens up room for the dreams I have been hiding behind all the junk.

 

Independence Day

Today is the day we celebrate our freedom.

Are you? Really free I mean?

We gained our freedom from another country but how about the freedom to choose what is right for ourselves? From expectations and persecution because we believe in God. 

‘One Nation Under God’ That is what our leaders wrote when we declared our independence. So why had God been removed from our schools and our government? 

I listen to the news at night.. the hate, the crime, the corruption in our government. It’s crazy and dangerous out there and this is in our own backyards. What kind of a country are we creating for our children?

I think we need God more than ever.

It doesn’t matter who is in office.. God is stronger and more powerful than any man.

We need God.

I’m not talking about what many call toxic Christianity here. The kind where the so called christians tell us HOW to do everything and pass down judgement in which they have have no right to judge.

I’m speaking of faith. 

Faith everything is going to be OK. 

Faith God has a plan in everything .

We just need to love one another, reach out and help one another, work together to make out country great again.

And have faith.

Think of how beautiful it would be if instead of looking the other way, we reached out our hand and helped pick someone back onto their feet after they have fallen, if we took the timeout of our busy lives to visit a sick friend or checked on an elderly neighbor, or offered to take a child fishing for an afternoon. It’s the simple things that make us free and all those little things add up to something wonderful.

After the fireworks tonight in celebration of July 4th, take a look in the mirror. Are you living in freedom or are you living in fear?

Then praise our God that you have a choice. Have faith in his power. Work to make a difference, then watch the miracles start to happen.

Beautiful Friends

I took the time this morning to have breakfast with a friend of mine that I have not seen in a while. We kept talking about getting together but… well you know…kids, work. life,…..

Everything always seemed to get in the way of spending a few hours together. Today we made it work and I am so glad we did. I think it had been over a year since we really sat down and talked. A lot can happen in a year. Kids grow, job changes, struggles, losses, adventures. So many things keeping us way too busy. Today was beautiful. We just simply talked about everything. She is the kind of person that can see the good in every situation. Even the bad ones. I never have to pretend around her. Pretend that things are ok when they are not. She helps me find the answers where there doesn’t seem to be any. She holds my hand and dries my tears. She assures me that things will be fine, that God has a plan in all of this. And she makes me laugh.I love how much we can laugh when we get together. I remember when we used to work together. The best part was how much we could laugh on any given day. Her laughter is infectious. She is good for my soul and she tells me that I am good for hers. Its one of those rare friendships that no matter how much time separates you from getting together, it never changes. You just pick up where you left off. We set up breakfast again for next month. I don’t want to let a year go by again. She is important to me. We all need friends like this in our lives.

Call them… plan some time to catch up…. let them know how important they really are in your life. Don’t be so busy that you let those kind of friendships go by the way side. Thats a terrible waste. You never know when you’re going to need a friend. Or how good it feels to be a friend to someone else.

Beautiful Friends

I took the time this morning to have breakfast with a friend of mine that I have not seen in a while. We kept talking about getting together but… well you know…kids, work. life,…..

Everything always seemed to get in the way of spending a few hours together. Today we made it work and I am so glad we did. I think it had been over a year since we really sat down and talked. A lot can happen in a year. Kids grow, job changes, struggles, losses, adventures. So many things keeping us way too busy. Today was beautiful. We just simply talked about everything. She is the kind of person that can see the good in every situation. Even the bad ones. I never have to pretend around her. Pretend that things are ok when they are not. She helps me find the answers where there doesn’t seem to be any. She holds my hand and dries my tears. She assures me that things will be fine, that God has a plan in all of this. And she makes me laugh.I love how much we can laugh when we get together. I remember when we used to work together. The best part was how much we could laugh on any given day. Her laughter is infectious. She is good for my soul and she tells me that I am good for hers. Its one of those rare friendships that no matter how much time separates you from getting together, it never changes. You just pick up where you left off. We set up breakfast again for next month. I don’t want to let a year go by again. She is important to me. We all need friends like this in our lives.

Call them… plan some time to catch up…. let them know how important they really are in your life. Don’t be so busy that you let those kind of friendships go by the way side. Thats a terrible waste. You never know when you’re going to need a friend. Or how good it feels to be a friend to someone else.

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Just one more

Life has a way of throwing you curveballs. Sometimes when you think.. I’ve had enough and I can’t take any more of this. You get just one more. And sometimes that one more catipults you back into the beauty of living.

Last night I received the sad news that yet another good friend had passed away this last week. As I sat there stunned, tears rolling down my cheeks, memories flooding my head, thinking of Dale. I had to smile. You see… Dale knew how to really live. He lived from the moment he woke up in the morning until he passed out at night. With Dale, there was always something going on. He loved his wife, his kitty’s, his friends, the city where he lived, his causes. Dale LOVED!! It’s the best way I know how to describe him. He went through some awful times. Hard times. Painful times. But it never kept him down.

Every single time I saw Dale he would say “Tell me a story” or “Anything you need to tell me?”  and he listened. He could hear what you didn’t say. Dale made me laugh and he made me smile, always. He had more stories in him than the local barber shop or cafe put together. He was there to lend a helping hand to anyone in need. He didn’t care if he knew you or not.

Dale made a difference.  Dale was loved and he will be missed by all of us.

People come and go in our lives every day. Some we will remember because of the impact that they made on us. How we felt when they were with us. Or.. how they made us want to be in life. Those special people who bring out the best part of us. That make us strive to make a difference ourselves.

That is what I want to surround myself with and what I want to remember about those friends who have passed on. The angels that God blessed my life with for a short time. They made memories within in me that can grow into actions. Actions that can make a difference in my life and to someone else. I can surround myself with like-minded people who want to make a difference  too. Just imagine a world were we all want to help each other. Just imagine.

 

 

 

TRYING TO UNDERSTAND

I am going to start by apologizing. I am all over the board today and I’m trying to figure it  out. This morning I found out that I woman I have known for many years, a girl that I watched grow up, graduate, get married, and have 3 beautiful babies.. A mom, a daughter, a wife… was killed in a head on collision with a drunk driver. Her babies survived, only one is in the hospital. She died. A beautiful life just wiped out because someone got behind the wheel of a car when they shouldn’t have. The other driver and his passenger are in the hospital too. I’m trying to pray for them too but I am having a really hard time. I am heartbroken for Lindsay’s family. Her children who were with her when she died. Her Husband who has to find a way to go on. Her mother who lost her child. It’s making me think of my child. My daughter who was also friends with Lindsay. I want to put her and her family into a bubble of security so nothing can happen to them. I am afraid.

The tears have been going for hours now, in between the rage that I feel. At the other driver, the circumstances and at God. Why do things like this happen? How does one get past this?  I’m trying to understand where God is in all of this. Bad things happen all the time. It is part of life but this? I believe God is there with her family. I believe he is here with me now even though I am so angry  that I want to beat something.I keep telling  myself he has a plan in all of this but then I think of Lindsay and her babies…her family.

I believe this is where faith comes in, even though it’s a bit hidden in the anger and the tears at the moment. I still feel it. I know that my faith will sustain me just as I know the sun will come up again tomorrow and that each day will be a little bit better. I know that no matter what, life goes on. But I hope you don’t mind that I may be a mess for a little while longer.

Hug your kids and your loved ones. If you feel something.. say it. Its OK. Live because you just never know……