Embrace Change

embrace change

I’ve been randomly picking daily passages from Melody Beattie’s Journey to the Heart: Daily Meditations on the Path to Freeing your Soul. It’s a different way to meditate to begin my day. I pick a passage, read it, then write about it in my journal.

Today’s was September 22 and the message was to Embrace Change.

Just as seasons change, so do our lives. We don’t question the leaves turning gold, red, orange, or yellow. There are so many joyful activities–picking apples, wearing flannel, Halloween. Sure there’s that nostalgic feeling when summer is ending, but we go with the flow. We trust this is good, because that’s how nature is.

When our personal lives change, we get thrown out of our comfort zone. If we never changed, we wouldn’t grow physically, emotionally, or spiritually. I have fought change, shoved my heels into the dirt, and refused to move. It has hurt me on my journey, but maybe that’s part of it. Now that I’m ready for it, change is a bit easier.

Just like fall flows into winter it’s not a bad change, it’s just time for it. It’s time for me to do what I would have been doing 11 years ago before my son became ill. It’s not like I’m removing everything that has to do with the amazing foundation we have formed–just what doesn’t work for me and my family.

The change–passing our foundation’s family run on–will help another family fund research to save their child’s life. That makes it more than time to be ready. We’ll still serve the pediatric community, and I can serve a larger audience with my writing and teaching. I know see that this change is empowering to me and is helping others.

I needed this passage today. I also need to write it out to remind me that change is OK, change is exciting, change is good.

What changes are happening in your life?

Have you been digging your heels in? How?

What can you do to step out of your comfort zone and embrace the change?

Write it out and trust the process.

Let Your Light Shine

shine my light quote

What I love about quotes and words is that no matter what you write, it will affect people differently based on who they are, their life experiences, and perspective. I wrote this quote after feeling like I was changing who I was or acting a certain way to make other people feel better. Meanwhile I was feeling worse. I didn’t like what I was saying, how I was acting, and what I was eating.

Shining your light or dimming it can be taken in very different ways as I learned in my journaling workshop. Some said their light was a gift. Others said that it was different in certain stages of your life. Some choices are made for you as a child whereas in adulthood you may have more chances to shine.

My light is that inner guide that keeps me on track. It grows brighter when I’m feeding my mind, body, and soul what it needs to grow. It’s when I reach out to someone to comfort them in the midst of discomfort, because that’s who I am. It’s when I continue to reach for my dreams, no matter what roadblocks are thrown my way. It’s when I show love in the best way I know how and that may include a hug. It’s not worrying what people think of me, because I live through love and from my heart.

I can go back to specific times in my childhood and remember words and actions that dimmed my light. Bullying, being called hurtful names, being told it’s just a dream.

But I also remember times when my light brilliantly exploded into the world and gave hope to others.

I have to take responsibility for my light. Sometimes I shut off the switch and plunge myself in darkness. I make choices every day that determine how bright I can be. Am I afraid of my light, my potential? Do I self-sabotage and why? This is how journaling can be a tool for deep inquiry and healing. When we know why and how, we learn, change our actions, and heal.

I’m at that point in my life where I want to pull up the shades, turn up the wattage, and let my light pour into the world. I hope by doing that, I will show the way for others to find their light and let it brighten their lives.

Here are some questions you can write about in your journal to let your light shine:

How does your light shine? What does that mean to you?

What are you doing when it shines? Who are you with? How do you feel?

Have you ever dimmed your light to makes someone else feel better? In what way?

How can being yourself, help that person find their light?

Are you afraid of your light, your potential? Do you self-sabotage? How and why?

Write about how your light showed up today.


August Month in Review


I love reviewing my previous months from my journal. When I look at my calendar, I check what I added on my To Do lists, what did I get done, and what was left over. Amazingly, I did most of what I listed on my calendar for August. It may not have been done that day, but by the beginning of September, I had very little to transfer over to this month. That means I’m planning a bit better.

The interesting part is that in my journaling, I’m still complaining of being overwhelmed, having too much on my plate, and needing to simplify. I have to watch being full of stuff to do, filling my schedule and not leaving empty space, and watching what I eat so that I’m not filling my body with too much as well. It all connects.

I wasn’t too good with weaving wellness into my days, which definitely adds to that overwhelmed feeling.

Here’s what I enjoyed:

Visits with friends and family I hadn’t seen in a long time.

Enjoying our 12th annual Pig Roast for Nick’s Fight to be Healed Foundation. The community support never ceases to amaze me!

Celebrated my 28th wedding anniversary with Luke

Finalized and submitted the third book in my series–The Puzzle Quests: Sketchy Dinosaurs

Taught five classes on writing/publishing

What I learned/Need to change:

Take time for wellness, exercise, and self-care

Simplify and spend my time with what serves my purpose and nourishes me.


Letting Go–Spend time pursuing my goals and not what others think I should be doing

Create Space–both physically and time wise to pursue my goals

Attainable Goals–Spread them out for success

Look for signs of Validation–August was filled with clues that I was veering off my path and signs that I was on the right track. I will keep an eye out for them this month.

Take a few minutes and review your August calendar, journals, notes, anything that gives you an idea of how you are spending your time, reacting to situations or people, and creating opportunities to fulfill your purpose. Then assess what you want your September to bring you and make it attainable. Write it out and it will be.

Happy September!

Be Open to Receive

North Carolina–Blue Ridge Parkway toward Mount Mitchell

I am trying meditation again. I’ve lasted three days. I know that when I start my day with meditation, create an intention, and live my day with that intention, I am much happier. I am clearer on my purpose. I am able to choose how my day will go.

For example, this morning I woke up from a dream where I kept entering different classrooms trying to find my son, Nick. He was only 9 or so, but I could never catch up to him. I woke up sad and missing him.

Then I listened to Tom Evans’ Ten Minutes of Mindfulness on the Insight Timer app. He noted that our brains are always giving and receiving. If I’m talking, then I’m not listening. If my mind if filled with sadness, then I’m not receiving whatever it is that I want to receive. So I opened my mind and asked, What did I want to receive?

Joy, Love, Laughter, a wonderful day.

What would that look like and how did it involve my purpose?

Writing and sharing hope to anyone who is in need and open to receive. It’s as simple as that, but oh so hard.

Instead of sadness, I choose joy. Joy as I remember my beautiful son, Joy as I am in the moment with my other son, happiness that I get to sit at my desk and do what I love–write.

When I receive openly, then I have more to give. Love, compassion, my gift of writing.

That sadness has been lifted. If it settles back, I will remind myself of my intention and know they are thoughts that I can change. If I hadn’t sat down to meditate and write from that meditation, my day may be starting quite differently.

What are you open to receive today and what are you open to give? Write it down and make it so.

Have a wonderful day!

June–Month in Review


June was a month of healing. I had my left ACL replaced in my knee on May 30. Recovery was a bit tougher than I had figured. My body was so exhausted, it shut down. I had no choice but to relax and let my body heal. For two weeks my journal was filled with posts about lack of sleep due to an immobilizer, pain, and stiffness. But as I wrote I could note the improvements.

I used this time to edit Sketchy Dinosaurs–my middle grade novel that is due to be published in December. I read, emptied my schedule, and stayed home. I gave up the idea that I had to be everywhere and do everything.

There’s a certain freedom in completely surrendering to my body’s needs. When I didn’t, my body rebelled. I spent time with friends and gave myself permission to let things go. Taking a step back gave other people in the foundation the opportunity to be in charge and allow their talents to shine. I loved that and hope to keep my schedule lighter to let others get involved and open space for new projects.

I didn’t reach a lot of my goals, but I was not realistic with what I could get done. My goal should have been to heal my body and nothing more. However, that’s hard when life continues to happen, and I can’t let a whole month go by without working. The best part about being a writer is that I can do it anywhere.

It may take me forever to learn that I can’t accomplish all that I put on my plate. I always think I’ll get more done than I do. I figure even if I get half of my goals done, I’ll feel better. That’s not the case because all I think about is what I didn’t do.

I plan to spread my goals out, so that I won’t feel so much pressure and can enjoy the process and results more.

July has begun and I’m still healing, editing my book, working on a picture book, and overseeing the creation of a new website. I’m slowly down, see?

The Power of People



It’s the people who are placed in our lives that lift us up when we are at our deepest lows, who we know will support us when we need them most or celebrate when life is wonderful. The power of people is to bring out our personal resilience. That sense of community and connections is what gives us the strength to keep going. Those connections that come across our path at the right time for the right purpose.

Who are the people who stitch you together?

Who do you have late night conversations with or share a cup of tea or coffee?

What songs or lyrics bring you strength, push you through, lift you up?

What are some quotes that speak to your soul, flutter your heart.

Poems that give you chills.

Books that have transformed your life or made you laugh out loud with joy?

Take scraps of paper and write them down on separate pieces. Then stitch them together in your journal or keep them in a jar to pull one out when needed most. This is what counts, what lifts us up, and are reminders of our resilience.

What are you made of?


About two weeks ago, I had surgery to replace my ACL. I had a few setbacks, but had wonderful support from family and friends. It made me think of resilience and how what we are made of determines how we handle life situations.

In my journaling workshop everyone wrote to this quote, and I asked them to describe themselves in terms of food. What type of food are you? What does it say about how you handle circumstances in your life or where you are right now in your life?

The results were creative and eye opening. I was overdone spaghetti, because I feel all twisted and overdone. Obviously I was having a hard time and need to rethink my food in a more positive manner. That’s OK, because it made me aware of my mindset. Others were strawberry because they are refreshing and sweet, avocado as it tastes nutty (she is is self-proclaimed nutty and tans dark like a ripe avocado, and lobster being a favorite food and feeling like she is floundering.

Identifying with a food may not be an earth shattering epiphany, but it can help you connect to where you are mentally and emotionally. Perhaps you’re oatmeal–soothing and constant or a lemon–always tart and stinging, but yet cleansing. There’s nothing wrong with a bit of fun and creativity in your journaling, and we can always change what we are made of by adding some ingredients.

What are you made of? Are you happy with the food that reflects your mood or attitude? What can you add in to balance that food or complement it?

A Life that Loves You


This saying popped into my head as I was writing a note to my niece about how proud I was of her going for her dreams. Sometimes it takes some swerves and curves to figure out what our dreams are. Sometimes they change or are fulfilled, so we wonder what’s next.

A great deal of my life is influenced by my purpose what drives and fulfills me. When I thought about how I lived my life, I asked myself if I’m living my life in a way that is loving to myself, that is good for me, and is supporting my purpose and dreams.

Those are big questions to ask, and I don’t think it can be a yes or no answer or black and white. So what does living a life that loves you mean to me?

  1. Fueling my body properly: What I put into my body has a direct correlation to how I physically feel, how creative I am, and how much energy I have. I’m really good when I plan out meals and have good food on hand. I’m an emotional eater, so when life isn’t loving me so much, I don’t show myself love with food. I’ll reach for that chocolate bar or some type of comfort food. That may be fine once in a while, but instead of placing food that makes me feel crappy in my body, I ask how will this food show love to me. What kind of life do I want to live and does what I’m eating move me forward toward that life or pull me back?
  2. How I spend my time: I am a really good time waster. I can skirt around what I should be doing and not get anything done. When I finally sat down and journaled about why I did this, I realized I was prioritizing what I thought I should be doing instead of what fulfilled me or led toward living my dreams. I credit the change in how I spend my time on some deep soul searching and writing through why I’m here. How do I want to make an impact on the world and what is my purpose? After I was clear on my purpose and the fact that writing is my passion, I began to clear out what no longer served me. Don’t get me wrong. I still waste time, but I have clear goals that are stepping stones to my dreams.
  3. People in my life: Living the life that loves me also includes being surrounded by people who love me. It’s people who believe in me and vice versa. We lift each other up and celebrate our successes with true joy. I will have separation anxiety if I don’t see my tribe enough, so I plan gatherings, outings, and tribe dates. Spending quality time with my husband and son is equally important if not more so. I love being around people who accept me as I am.
  4. Get moving: Exercise has always been a part of my life. I remember waking up at 6am in high school and doing aerobics in the living room of my family home. My brother would scream at me in the basement because my pounding woke him up. Working out is my stress reliever. Bringing yoga into my life balanced out the physical and mental strengthening.
  5. Be where you are: I recently tore my ACL and will have surgery next week. This has changed my exercise regimen, but I’m doing what is best for my body as it is now. My injury has forced me to slow down and be fine with not pushing my body or my schedule where I don’t want it to go. Living the life that loves me right now means letting go of my expectations and doing what serves me best.

Living a life that loves you is an endless checks and balance. Checking in to see how life is feeling. And I mean that literally. We can move so fast that a whole month goes by, and we don’t remember what we did.

Take a moment to pause and answer this question in your journal–What does living a life that loves you mean? Physically, mentally, emotionally, financially. Feel free to use the headings I chose or create your own. What matters most is that you love yourself first,check in and begin again.

Slow it Down and Enjoy the Bloom


Over the last few months and really the last three years, I have planted multiple seeds that I have wanted to grow for a very long time. Sometimes life throws us too much rain or tsunamis or earthquakes that force us to abandon our blooms for a bit. But once it happens, it’s very important to slow down and enjoy what you have worked so hard to grow.

In addition to being clear on what I want to grow, I have added daily intentions that I foster throughout the day to nourish my seeds. If you’d like some journaling techniques on growing your purpose, check out my previous blog titled: What is Blooming for You?¬†On day 10, my intention was Slow Down and Enjoy the Bloom. The week had been hectic and a few times I wanted to skip the intention process, finish one project, and jump into the next. There’s so much I want to bloom that I tend to rush. This intention process is showing me that I take on too much and don’t stop to appreciate the results of my hard work and nurturing.


I met with my beta readers and my third manuscript in three years is heading toward the publishing process. It won’t be until the end of 2019, but because I have nurtured this dream, it is growing faster and more vibrant every year. I’m excited and grateful. It’s not done yet, but I slowed down, enjoyed talking with the students who will read the book, and learned from them.

What I love about these intentional words or phrases is that they are like rays of sunshine that remind me throughout the day what I want to focus on. Over the weekend it was Unselfish Me Time, which influenced my decision to get up early, journal to my boys, read, and enjoy the quiet time. This allows me to rejuvenate so that I can give to others and be fully present with my family when they arrived. On Easter Sunday, it was Family Love. It was quiet, but precious in that I spent valuable and quality time with my son and husband.

Throughout the day, I’ll check in so that I stay on track or write through any rough spots. My journal is my ‘pause place.’ I can take a break and reconnect with my purpose. At the end of the day, I take a couple minutes and write about my intention, my growth, whether the intention worked or didn’t. Why and what I can do differently tomorrow.

Use your journal as your personal guidance system. You’ll be amazed at how self-aware you become and you’ll foster your own ability to recharge, reconnect, and nurture yourself.

Give it a try and let me know how it works.

What is blooming for you?


As the world outside comes back to life, the birds sing once again, and the sunshine sheds its light on the goodness around us, we know that hope is blooming.


–What is blooming for you? It could literally be flowers and vegetables, but it could also be something inside you that you want to grow. Or a project that you want to build. A change that has been bubbling all winter that you are ready to manifest. Maybe it’s within something you have no control over, but have to accept it into your life. If you aren’t sure, writing about possibilities will help the ideas take root.


–Once you know what you want to grow, get specific. Here are some suggestions:

Personal–health, reducing stress, self-care, relaxation, exercise

Job stability or a new one–going back to school, getting a promotion, changing careers, retirement or what to do now that you have retired.

Simplicity–downsizing, decluttering, slowing down, spending time with who and what matters.


–In spring we often view rain as a hindrance to our ability to enjoy ourselves or the outside world. Rain is needed to nourish the earth so that flowers can grow, trees can bloom, birds can find worms to eat. Without the rain nothing would grow. April showers do bring May flowers, but we have to find the goodness in the dark clouds or setbacks that may affect what we want to grow.

–What do you see as rain in your life? What is the negative that you feel is preventing the growth, that you might have seen as a hindrance, but actually can help you bloom and nourish what you planted?


–What positive sunlight can you cast on your seeds to help them grow?

–What can you do to nourish yourself and what you are blooming?

–Shifting your perspective to seeing the good in very situation will make the harder parts of growth and change a bit easier.


–Once those seeds sprout and you are growing what you planted, how will you feel? –What will it change or affect in your life?

–What does it look like? Describe it like you would a flower or plant.

Create a visual. It could be flowers with what you want to grow in the petals or a garden with the seeds noting what you want to bloom. It can be a quick reminder and motivator in our daily path to grow, heal, and become more aware of who we are. Writing in your journal helps to translate what you want on the page into your life.

Visual example by Arthur Forest

Write about the process of what you are growing. Every moment of our growth or transition into spring, into change, into something different whether we want it or not needs to be a gentle movement. The more we ease into the moment, the easier the transition, the more we are aware of our intention and our potential.