Sunday, December 28, 2014

Life is too short

"Life is way too short to spend another day at war with yourself." (Unknown)

     I always feel a bit melancholy after Christmas, especially looking at the beautiful lighted tree. We simply don't know if we are going to be around for another Christmas. I don't plan to leave, but who knows what may happen in the next 362 days!?!? This leads me to the beginning quote, please re-read it.
     And I offer these words by Jim Lockard for your consideration:
"Why are so many of us at war with ourselves? It is really baffling, isn't it? Perhaps it is about feeling diminished when we were young by the words, actions and omissions of others. But those others are not the main influences in our lives anymore, are they? When did we take over the job of diminishing ourselves? When and why?
 "It is time to say 'no more.' Not one more self-deprecating thought. It's over. Declare peace. Since we each have become both sides of the conflict, that shouldn't be too hard. Declare a peace treaty and live in peace with yourself. You deserve no less."
Wishing you a peaceful 2015.


Tuesday, December 16, 2014

What One Thing...?

     For many folks, December is a crazy time of year, with lots more stuff to do, events to attend, and emotions of all variety running rampant. Does this time of year HAVE to be that way? Really!?!?
     Ya gotta start somewhere. What is one thing that you can stop doing to simplify your life in December? There is something. And I can guarantee that the world will not stop turning because you made the decision to stop doing some thing. Give yourself a gift of think time to see what it is that would lighten your load by giving it up.
     I know from personal experience that this works very well. I have a calm, fun, full December without stress, because I'm only doing those things that are really meaningful to me. It is possible!
                 Peace and serenity,

Monday, December 8, 2014

TED Talk by Timber Hawkeye--a great start to your week

"Your beliefs don't make you a better person, your behavior does." Timber Hawkeye
Here's the link to his TED Talk--an excellent reminder of the power of gratitude. It's definitely worth the 10-minute break to listen and watch. Enjoy!

Monday, December 1, 2014

Reminder for "the Holidays"

     There is a very common tendency to set all good eating habits aside during "the Holidays," possibly starting as early as Halloween. I have been no stranger to such wild abandon, and let's just say, the results were unsatisfying.
     What I routinely remind myself this time of the year is that Thanksgiving Day is a holiday and Christmas Day is a holiday, but all the other days between and around them are NOT holidays. This is a strong motivator to eat in my usual healthy manner on those non-holidays, so that when I do indulge on a holiday, it's not months of recovery to get back to normal.
      Also, I have a few (2-3) Christmas-party type of events this year. At those I allow myself to eat whatever I want, with the goal of simply not making myself uncomfortable with quantities. That way I don't feel deprived through the season, which is a real danger mode for me.
      We take care of what we value, and I value my great health. Today is not a holiday, and I will eat well. And as a result, I will enjoy Christmas Day more than ever.
      Happy non-holiday to you!

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Who Knew?!?!?

      Holy cow! My car grieving period was quite short. Here's the photo of my new car, a 2013 Nissan Altima. I never would have thought I would utter these words, but I love this car even more than the BMW! An amazing sequence of events happened, and it was less than 48 hours from the first time I saw it, till I was driving it home to stay. I am feeling awesomely blessed and outrageously thankful!

Happy Thanksgiving to all!

Sunday, November 23, 2014

There She Went...

     Yesterday was the first time I saw my car drive away and I was not in it. My "baby" of 10+ years, my dream car, headed off yesterday to her second home. I cried, a lot. There are very good reasons for selling her: high miles, maintenance hassle and EXPENSE, wanting something way more fuel efficient. But then there was parting with her, which my head was ready for, but my heart was not. I don't know if I'll ever have another one. (I don't know if I even WANT another one!) Everything else, including whatever I get to replace her, is just a car (not necessarily a bad thing).
     So now the search for another car begins. Photos forthcoming...

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Since it's November...

     Despite the fact that there is already Christmas stuff prominent in every store, I am still generally focused on Thanksgiving. And it wouldn't be November without a blog on gratitude.
     I'm thinking of the less obvious (tend-to-take-for-granted) stuff that I am thankful for:

  • ability to read
  • so many magnificent vacation places around our world
  • the opportunity to brighten another person's life
  • ability to sew
  • ability to walk without aids
  • ability to use both hands and arms
  • 12-step programs
  • young people, new ideas, new inventions
  • I have everything I need and most everything I want
  • healthy, happy sons
  • outstanding husband
  • even more loving family

     Most of all, I am grateful for a loving, close relationship with my Higher Power that sustains me through all the adventures of life. I am loved, always and all ways, and so are you!
     Thanks for reading!

Saturday, November 8, 2014

"Good Death"

     I've just finished reading the very interesting book titled Smoke Gets in Your Eyes and Other Lessons from the Crematory. It was written by Caitlin Doughty, who has also created the website, Order of the Good Death. In the book, she states:
“For me, the good death includes being prepared to die, with my affairs in order, the good and bad messages delivered that need delivering. The good death means dying while I still have my mind sharp and aware; it also means dying without having to endure large amounts of suffering and pain. The good death means accepting death as inevitable, and not fighting it when the time comes.” (p. 222) 
This is Ms. Doughty's definition of a good death. What is your definition? 
     Oh, wait a minute. We don't like to think about such things. Trust me, there are a LOT of things in the book that I would never have thought of. We as a culture tend to hide death away and like to pretend it doesn't happen. But as Ms. Doughty wisely says, "We cannot possibly live without a relationship to our mortality..." It's in knowing that we'll be leaving here someday that we have the inspiration to live and love full-out. 
     I highly recommend the book! 

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

"I think I can't..."

     For years, I've told myself I can't do side plank, a shoulder and core challenging yoga pose. I just told myself I couldn't do it, didn't even try. As a yoga teacher, I KNOW BETTER!!! I remind my students frequently not to tell themselves that they can't do something. In a small way in my defense, I don't care for plank pose, so I figured I'd like side plank even less, so I didn't care to try. I can do regular plank pose just fine.
     This morning, with thoughts of teaching side plank on the wall (a beginner version, or good for folks with some sort of shoulder challenge), I decided to give side plank on the floor a try in the privacy of my woman cave, so if I truly couldn't do it, I wouldn't be "on display." Geez. I did it, no problem, piece of cake. I like it way better than regular plank. Who knew!?!?!
     So I challenge you--what is something you've been saying you can't do? Give it a try, maybe you CAN!
      Life is good!

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

For your contemplation...

The root of sorrow lies in the dearth of heroism and courage in the character of the average man. Paramahansa Yogananda

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Our Children

I love this passage from The Prophet by Kahlil Gibran, and I love it when it appears before me, "magically," when I need to re-read it.
"Your children are not your children. They are the sons and daughters of Life's longing for itself. They come through you but not from you, and though they are with you yet they belong not to you. You may give them your love but not your thoughts, for they have their own thoughts. You may house their bodies but not their souls, for their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow, which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams. You may strive to be like them, but seek not to make them like you. For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday. You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth. The Archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite, and He bends you with His might that His arrows may go swift and far. Let your bending in the Archer's hand be for gladness; for even as He loves the arrow that flies, so He loves also the bow that is stable."

Sunday, October 19, 2014


"Spread love everywhere you go. Let no one come to you without leaving better and happier."                   --Mother Teresa
      I'm reading a very interesting book by Caitlin Doughty titled Smoke Gets in Your Eyes and Other Lessons from the Crematory. She's a young, licensed mortician taking a historical, serious, and humorous look at death. She is the founder of The Order of the Good Death. Her website is and there you can find some VERY entertaining videos.
      As Caitlin indicates, the chance of each one of us dying is 100%. We don't much care to spend a lot of time thinking about that. I surely don't. But when I do, it leaves me considering my legacy. That leads me back to the Mother Teresa quote I started with. Our greatest power is to love. Let's use it, and live as Mother Teresa suggests.
      I love my readers!

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Have a FIRST today

    I am currently working with a group of awesome women, and one of the assignments I have given them is to experience some sort of "first" in their lives. It doesn't need to be anything earth-shattering, like walking on the moon (but it could be!). It may be something as simple as smiling at someone you don't know. A "first" involves paying attention, because we probably experience more of them than we realize.
    One example is that a few weeks ago I had an airbnb guest ( am a host) who is an artist, and he did a pencil and watercolor portrait of me while we chatted in the evening. Having a portrait done was definitely a delightful first for me.
    Regarding a "first," I offer this suggestion of encouragement from author Jane Beach:
Make a list of all the times you've broken through fear to do something new. Then ask the questions:
--What is Spirit calling me to do now?
--Am I willing to listen to the voice of my inner wisdom?
--Am I willing to take the next step? 
Have fun with your FIRST today!

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Cleaning & Clearing

     I have been on a massive cleaning & clearing effort at our house for the last couple of weeks. I've had the luxury of the time to spend parts of a day or two on each room, thoroughly cleaning it and getting rid of lots of stuff.
     If you've read my blog for some time, or know me, you know that I despise cleaning. The goofiest things have kept me motivated:
     - a piece of synthetic "lamb's wool" that a friend gave me, saying, "Here, this will clean your window screens." I gave him a look that said, "What makes you think I want to clean my screens?" I took it anyway, decided to try it, and it's a miracle!
     - I bought Howard's Restor-a-Finish at the hardware store to spiff up our oak kitchen cabinets, and that, too, is a miracle product. It cleans and restores the finish without much effort. The cabinets look like new.
     - I had printed an article I saw on Facebook that included a list titled "101 Things That Can Easily Be Reduced in Your Home." My mission is to cross off at least 90, and I'm over half-way to that goal already.
     - The pile of stuff I plan to donate is growing in our garage. There's nothing there I will miss.
     - I've sold some things on craiglist or ebay, thus earning somewhat of a "tip" for my efforts.
     - It feels SO GOOD to de-clutter. I LOVE how seeing some empty spaces.
     - I'm up to 18 bags of trash pitched, plus a bunch of stuff to recycle.

     I heard someone say recently regarding happiness: 1) I got to eat today; 2) I'm healthy; 3) I have someone to love and love me; why wouldn't I be happy?  It makes me happy to have less stuff in my life, and make more room for experiences, like travel, events with friends, golfing and so on.
     Here's to less stuff!

P.S. Before and after photos of the laundry room...

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Useful Thinking

From Paramahansa Yogananda (who wrote Autobiography of a Yogi):
     "Negation acts like an insulator that inhibits the flow of God's power through you and thus causes inharmonies of body, mind, and soul. Criticism, anger, envy, suspicion, jealousy, fear, hate, doubt, laziness, worry, anxiety, thoughts of lack and so on are all forms of negation. Watch your thoughts. Stop them from pointless wandering, and make them obey you. Train your mind to think constructively at all times. A joyful, thankful attitude will carry you a long way toward the goal of bringing into your life only the good things that you desire."
     "Change your thoughts if you wish to change your conditions. Since you alone are responsible for your thoughts, only you can change them."

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Making a Difference

     This quote is from Jane Goodall: What you do makes a difference, and you have to decide what kind of difference you want to make.
     What kind of difference will you make today? Will you offer a friendly smile or a frown? Will you talk about what's great in your life or talk about problems and what's wrong with the world? Even these seemingly small choices DO make a difference, not only in how you feel, but how those around you are affected.
     We don't have to be Mother Teresa to make a difference. We do it by doing what comes naturally for us. Sometimes it's SO natural, it doesn't seem to make a difference. Here's an example from my life. I'm a natural organizer, especially of events. Last Sunday I organized a trip to Kansas City for three friends and myself. We went to a morning service, lunch with several friends, and then to the Royals game, in a rented car no less. We had a great day! While I dearly love the friends that went with me, I know that if any of them had had to organize the adventure, it would not have happened. That sort of effort just doesn't "float their boats." So my willingness to organize made a great difference, and it was easy for me.
      Consider your choices for making a difference. Go do it!

Monday, September 15, 2014

How about this one?!?!?

In my daily reading today, I ran headlong into this provocative quote by Andrea de Michaelis:

I want to look back on my life and be giddy with joy that I was the one who got to live it. 

This IS possible. I sure do feel this way about my life. Do you?      

Friday, September 12, 2014


     I had a gathering last night of folks that I dearly love, who have been in assorted classes or groups with me. It's a sacred group that loves, listens, supports and delights in one another.
     There you have it. I used the word "sacred." That was our discussion topic. Here's a shortened version of our discussion questions for consideration:

1. What is sacred to you? 
2. Most likely in #1, you identified relatively positive things, such as “family.” Now take a look at those sacred beliefs you hold that may not be serving your best interests. (An example from Leta’s life: I have to do everything myself.)
3. Are you, as a human being, sacred? If you believe you are, how does that lead you to care for yourself? If you don’t believe you are sacred, how does that lead you to care for yourself? How DO you care for yourself? What does this say about your personal sacredness?
4. Is your work sacred? How would your daily worklife change if you viewed it as sacred? (Note “daily worklife” can be paid work, domestic goddess/god tasks, volunteer efforts, retirement/relaxation, etc.)

     By the end of our two-hour gathering, I was in a state of awe at the unique sacredness of each person present. I realized for myself an intimate connection between sacredness and beauty, and beauty is wherever I choose to see it. I certainly see it in other humans and myself. What a blessing!
     Have a great weekend, sacred ones!


Thursday, September 4, 2014

More travels, more lessons

     Fellow practitioner Judy Whitcraft posted this on Facebook:
Abraham wisdom : When a lady asked, "How do I know when to be a teacher to my 19 year old daughter and when to be quiet?" Abraham's answer was......."If you're not sure.... err in minding your own business."

     Oh, geez. I think this is the most challenging thing I get to practice as a parent of adult children. We RAISED them to be independent, and now they are, darn it! (Not really, darn it.) 
     Dennis (my husband) and I went to Fort Collins, Colorado this past long weekend to help our sons move to a new rental home, a huge upgrade for them in terms of space and quality. I had all sorts of motherly wisdom and advice to offer, but blessings of the Universe--the time never seemed just right. And that's for a very good reason! None of what I wanted to say needed to be said. 
     I am an avid supporter of free will and free choice--it's our most fundamental human endowment. So if I want to have free choice and learn the way I learn, I must allow my wonderful sons to do the same. We learn much more by experience than we ever learn by being told what to do. 
     Practicing life, learning lessons,

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Vacation Wonder

     I returned this week from a vacation in Pennsylvania and Ohio, visiting family and "my old stomping grounds." I'd like to share a few photos of the joy and wonder.

This is the view into State College (where Penn State University is) from the top of the mountain. If I had a dollar for every time I've driven or ridden over that mountain, I'd be LONG retired :)

This is in Alan Seeger Natural Area, a park, picnic and hiking area in central PA. It is hands-down my favorite spot on the planet. I walked around my favorite trail. The freshness of the air is tough to describe. I feel especially connected to the wonder and love of the planet there.

In Philadelphia (visiting my nephew's family), we went to a couple of awesome Italian markets. This is an 11-pound jar of Nutella. Fortunately, there was no room left in my suitcase. 

Darth Vader and two storm troopers were at the Phillies game to promote the upcoming Star Wars Night at the ballpark. Luckily he did not use the Force on me (at least I don't think so!). 

Ever the little kid (2nd childhood?), I got my great-niece Kerry to snap a shot of me with the fun and furry green mascot of the Phillies, the Phanatic. Icing on the cake to a great trip, so much fun!

SMILE!!!!  *  LIFE IS GOOD!!!!

Monday, August 11, 2014

This is Heaven NOW

     I had the awesome joy and honor to spend this weekend just past at Walk in Peace Ranch in the Flint Hills of Kansas, northeast of Wichita. (
     My own personal slice of heaven was the hilltop... a labyrinth, Starhenge, Spirit Stones and more. At sunset Friday and Saturday nights, I climbed the hill to watch the sun go down and the moon rise (bonus: a "super" moon), and to see the first visible stars. Conveniently placed atop the hill were several large polished stone slabs on which I could stretch out. The sky is SO big there, that, when lying down, it was only in my furthest peripheral vision that I could see land.
      This peaceful time that I spent on the hilltop embedded in my heart that heaven is within me, and I am within it, and it's all One, a powerful, comfortable, joyful knowing. I can hardly wait to get back there and be on that hilltop again.
      Practicing heaven now,

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Another thought on the mustard seed

     Up until Thursday afternoon this past week, I was having the week from hell, with the "icing on the cake" being my car stranding me (see previous post re: car repairs) and needing not just one, but two tows. My sweet husband asked me Thursday morning how I was doing, and I just burst into tears and he scurried away, "sorry I asked!" I felt like I was hanging by a thread, a very frayed thread.
     I went swimming, which is always therapeutic for me. During the back and forth, I was reminded of the Bible verse, "If you have the faith of a mustard seed, nothing shall be impossible." I figured that was about where I was with my faith--a very small mustard seed. So I took the "mustard seed" idea a bit further.
     A friend had turned me onto the Astronomy Picture of the Day ( which I find both beautiful and awe-inspiring. One day recently there was a photo that looked like a lot of stars, but many of those tiny pinpoints of light were WHOLE GALAXIES. So I decided that my tiny, wavering bit of faith was like that tiny pinpoint of light, but knowing that there was a WHOLE GALAXY behind it. That felt very calming and empowering.
     And, praise the Universe, by Thursday afternoon, the week from hell had turned into the week from heaven. Mostly, because my car is still in the shop with no verdict on its ills. "This, too, shall pass."
     Hanging in there,

Friday, July 25, 2014

Living Life Fully

     WOW, what a week this has been. It's been a week wherein I could have gotten plenty down about situations in my own life. However, one new friend living in Arkansas had severe storm damage. And two friends had significant and sudden deaths in their families. All that certainly yanks minor daily annoyances into perspective.
     This is leaving me feeling ever more adamant about letting people know how much they mean to us. Say "I love you" with reckless abandon (on a cosmic scale, we do all love each other because we are all one). Express feelings of appreciation. Look people in the eye. Smile. Be friendly. Expect the best of folks. Have some fun with folks you care about. Laugh. Life is way too short.
     I love you, my readers!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, July 21, 2014

Rest and Recovery

     I had an adventure this weekend to visit a friend who had had double knee-replacement surgery last week. Quite a bold surgical move, but the increasing pain made it the best option, and it was finally done. He also had some complications afterward, which resulted in his body recovering from more than "just" the knee replacements.
     My friend is up and walking nicely with a walker. He has long incisions with staples holding them closed to heal. He wants to be all well, recovered and back to his normal life NOW. He can get frustrated that the recovery is taking "so long."
     We had a couple of discussions about how humans generally grossly underestimate the amount of energy it takes to heal our bodies, be it a minor thing like a new tattoo or major surgery. We think that the more we force the issue (rehab, meds, whatever), the sooner we'll heal and be back to our routine. If you've ever had surgery or a muscle or ligament injury, you know that the body heals in its own long time. No amount of rushing, pushing or wishing makes it go faster.
     Our bodies are amazingly intelligent and thankfully, they do what needs to be done without our conscious guidance. What about adopting the attitude of supporting that intelligence with abundant rest, patience, peacefulness and appreciation rather than an exasperated "too slow!"?

Monday, July 14, 2014

Communication Problem

     This quote is from The Big Leap by Gay Hendricks (an outstanding book):
"Behind every communication problem is a sweaty ten-minute conversation you don't want to have. However, the moment you work up the courage to have it, you collect an instant reward in relief as well as open up a flow of communication that will allow you to resolve the situation."

     Holy cow. I was reviewing the book today to help prepare for a workshop I'll be doing soon, and I hit upon this quote. I had an example of this very thing this past weekend. Alas, I had been dragging around the fear of the "sweaty ten-minute conversation" for WAY longer than I'd care to admit. And yes, there was an "instant reward in relief" and the issue was resolved. Whew!
     Things such as this that we hang onto out of fear really do inhibit good from fully flowing to and through us. My mentor, Dr. Chris Michaels, is adamant about saying what needs to be said, within the same day (in the above example, I failed that miserably). But like all of life, this is a practice, and I am improving!
     Maybe you have something that needs to be said, today?!?!??

Friday, July 11, 2014

Ungrow Up

     My friend Jeffrey Dunn used the title phrase in a recent email, talking about how he gave up his saxophone many years ago to "grow up," and now he's getting back into it, and he's going to ungrow up.
     I was talking with son Eliot the other day, having an unusual (for me) lament about assorted worries and feeling like an old fart. Our discussion of that ended with "this, too, shall pass." He referred me to this OK GO video: This group's creativity and goofiness are great reminders that life is FUN!!
     Oh, dear, I do take life too seriously. And there's absolutely no good reason for it. I have a full, rich, healthy, love-filled life. I think I shall remember to have some FUN today. And tomorrow. And each day after that. Do give some consideration to how you may lighten up your life :)
     With smiles,

Friday, July 4, 2014

Moving Forward

Words from Sally Robbins:
     "It's so easy for our human minds to come up with reasons to shelve our dreams. Too old, too broke, not enough training... blah, blah, blah. We can choose to listen to that critical voice, or we can choose to move forward anyway."
     While I was away on a week-long trip, someone I had seen in a band the weekend before I left died suddenly. While it was not someone I knew personally, it does give me reason to pause and consider. We are not guaranteed any particular amount of time here. Do I want to reach the end of my days here without having tried everything I can think of that may bring me joy? Do I want to live my days in worry, fear or stressed out (most likely about something over which I have no control)?
     Let's be among the those who reach the end with NO regrets. Join me on this 3-month intensive adventure: BE in Love With Your Life! Details here:
     If you've made it this far, you know that the Universe has provided for you in amazing and bountiful ways, and that when you set your mind and heart to something, nothing is impossible. Join me. We are going to rock, have fun, laugh, grow, and dream.

Monday, June 23, 2014

The Mixed Bag of Car Repairs

    As I draft this, I'm sitting at the car repair shop, getting an oil change in preparation for a big road trip. Focus as I did on "just an oil change," alas, such is not to be.
     Already I've been taken twice to my car to see things that must be fixed, both relatively minor. However, it was pointed out, fixing those things could point out further problems. And, of course, the threat of a breakdown "in the middle of nowhere" compels me to say, "OK, fix it." All the while, "$$$$$$$" are throbbing around my brain.
     I'm so grateful for my car ("my baby") and how wonderful and reliable it has been. This coming Thursday marks 10 years owning it. And I want to keep it for several more years.
     Why do I have such a rough time with a car repair bill? The only thing I can think of, really, is that we won't have enough money to pay for it, and that's silly.
     So here I go, making a "re-frame it" list:

  • My car is my dream car, and I want to keep it healthy and happy, thus keeping me safe and secure.
  • My car gives me priceless freedom and independence, but only if it is running well.
  • I spend plenty of money maintaining ME. Why wouldn't I do that for my car, on which I am very dependent?
  • Regular maintenance buys peace of mind.
  • A repair bill is another opportunity for Spirit to provide us with the bounty to continue living well.

     I know I'll have achieved a major spiritual breakthrough when a car repair bill no longer causes me an internal gasp of distress. The final report, $676, and one of the problems I took it in for reappeared on the way home. Insert "gasp of distress" here.
     Knowing it will all work out just fine,

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Freedom and Opportunity

     Words from Kathy Juline: "Despite an innate aversion to feeling hemmed in or constrained in any way, many of us place limits and boundaries on our life experience. We would not think of erecting an impenetrable barrier around our residence or setting a limit on how many miles away from home we allow ourselves to go, and we would likely make every effort to remove such restrictions if anyone tried to impose them on us. Yet instead of choosing to embrace the freedom that is our Divine nature, we often let ourselves stay within the confines of habits, routines, old hurts and conditioned behaviors. We remain trapped in ancient wounds."
     Here's an exciting opportunity to break free and fully embrace your Divine nature: my BE in Love with Your Life Program, running August thru October, 2014. Details are on my website, click here. Please check it out... it is guaranteed to raise your life to a whole new level of joy and inspiration!

Friday, June 13, 2014

More thoughts on fear

"Nothing in life is to be feared, it is only to be understood. Now is the time to understand more, so that we may fear less." Marie Curie

     I'm a yoga teacher. I'm dismayed, repeatedly, when someone says they were afraid to come to their first yoga class. So I'm contemplating that fear...
     Fear of the unknown. There are folks here, just like you, practicing and learning. We don't bite, criticize, or twist up like pretzels.
     Fear of not knowing how. We're all learning, in ALL areas of life. No one, especially me, your instructor, expects you to be great the first time. We do ourselves a huge disservice by letting fear of being a beginner stop us. Also, I have small classes and I'm trained to assist, even those who have practiced a long time.
     Fear of embarrassment. A great thing about yoga is that there's no competition and no comparison, and that's a great practice to take off the mat into the world as well.
     Fear you won't like it. OK, no problem. One class does not a life-long commitment make. At least you tried. Though I would suggest you try more than one teacher and more than one style of class!
     All the regular students in my classes will tell you how glad they are that they've stuck with it, and how a yoga practice has enhanced their well-being. Overcoming the fear was SO worth it!
     You may note that the few fears I've listed here can hold us back from a lot more joy in life than just a yoga practice. What's holding you back?
     BE bold!

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Trying New Things

     I just returned from a long weekend on Table Rock Lake with great friends. I LOVE being near and IN the water. I love to swim. It doesn't even matter if the water temperature is on the chilly side.
     I had the chance for the first time to go out in a kayak. I'm not fond of canoeing, and I've heard scary tales of folks getting stuck in an overturned kayak and drowning. But I did it anyway. It was heaven! Peaceful, easy, an awesome way to hang out in nature and in the water.
     At the opposite end of the spectrum, I had the chance to drive a jetski. Everything about me is built for endurance, not speed, so the experience was, at the same time, terrifying and exhilarating. My friend on the other jetski was pointing out sites to me, but all I could see was her wake and trying to stay in it so my jetski wouldn't bounce on waves. Despite hanging on for dear life, I loved this adventure, too. I'm proud to say that I got the thing up to 30 mph.
     My fears in both instances were totally goofy. Really, the worst that could have happened is that I had fallen in the water.
     Maybe those fears that are holding you back are goofy, too. Start (or keep on) trying new things, and more and more fears simply fall away. It feels great!
     Boldly going where I've not gone before,

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Good Question!

     From the pen of Cynthia James, some powerful and interesting questions to ponder:
Are you treating yourself the way you want to be treated?
Are you honoring and respecting yourself and asking others to do the same?
Are you caring for your body temple and presenting your best self every time that you leave your house?
Are you being the love that you desire?
What would your life be like if you loved yourself so deeply that the world had no choice but to love you back?
     Have a great week!

Friday, May 23, 2014

"We have rain!"

     Our area has been blessed with rain over the past couple of days.
     I was reminded of the words of Gregg Braden and an unnamed Tibetan monk that "the feeling is the prayer," and when we pray asking for something, it means we don't have it, and we are reinforcing that belief. Jesus said to pray, BELIEVING, that what you seek already exists. So all the past week, I've been chanting to myself, "We have rain." I've also been adding the imaginative aspects of how things smell when it rains, the squishy feeling of the soaked ground, the glorious beauty of rain droplets on our bald cypress tree. This morning when I stepped outside, all those imagined things were a reality. We have rain!
    Just a reminder (to myself as well as my readers) that this practice applies to more than rain!
        Happy Holiday Weekend!

Monday, May 19, 2014

Domestic Goddess

     Today is Monday, which usually includes for me a couple loads of laundry and a trip to the grocery store. Everyone does those two activities at some point during the week. How do you see them? Drudgery? "Have to"? "I hate doing laundry"?
     There was a time in my life wherein I had so much back pain that I couldn't do the laundry. I was on bed rest, so that I couldn't leave the house. I was ecstatic when I had healed enough to do laundry and shop for groceries again.
     One of my special talents is being able to see alternatives. So in this instance, I have applied the term "domestic goddess" to those rather mundane chores of the household. It makes me smile and feel better, and to me, it adds additional value to me completing those tasks.
     Can you come up with a nickname for yourself doing your less-enjoyable tasks? Please share it!
Love from a DG,

Sunday, May 11, 2014


     As I look out my woman cave office window this morning, I see beauty. Iris and peonies blooming. Green grass (we got rain!!!). Trees. Greenery with flowers to come.
     We see beauty because it is a part of us. We are beautiful and beloved creations of Spirit.
     This is Mother's Day. I appreciate the beautiful gestures of all those who have nurtured me. My own mother left the planet about 35 years ago. She was a very beautiful woman.
     I encourage you today to see the beauty in yourself, your mother, and all the feminine influences in your life, including our loving earth mother, Gaia. We are so blessed.
     I am grateful to BE a mom!
          Love to all,

Friday, May 2, 2014

"We will not regret the past nor nor wish to shut the door on it."

     This blog title is one of the Promises of Recovery from the AA Big Book.
     I was given the assignment in my Self Mastery Project group to write my "Once Upon a Time" story. This fits well with the title--my story is where I came from and what's shaped me, and I've released the trauma of it, yet I appreciate the person I've come to be. I wouldn't be who I am without it!
     So here's what I wrote: Once upon a time a princess was born into a family of chaos--Mom, Dad, Arlie (age 16), Ken (age 14). Mom, Dad and Arlie adored her. Ken spent his whole life crazy jealous of her, and spent his first four years with her being as abusive as possible. Eventually the physical abuse stopped (I bit him!), but the verbal and emotional abuse continued. My family's most consistent behavior was substance abuse--food, cigarettes, alcohol. Food = love, and I became a food addict. My grandma (Mom's mother) died suddenly of a heart attack when I was four years old, and I lived in terror that my mom would die. I was fat all my school years, and bullied and teased because of it. My way to excel was good grades-- valedictorian, then college and MBA degrees. Mom and Dad had a "we live in the same house, but really can't stand each other" relationship, insanely passive aggressive. Mom died of cancer when I left home. Yes, there is a connection--I was her last reason to live. THAT was a big load of baggage to release! Weight and food issues have been part of my whole life. My spiritual journey began in earnest in 1988 with a 12-step program and Unity Church. From the bottom I hit in 1987, my life has improved by quantum leaps, and I love my life, all of it!
     Thanking Spirit continuously for excellent life guidance!

Thursday, April 24, 2014


     Oh, my, how just the right words, at just the right time, when I am at just the right level of awareness, so much becomes clear. And afterwards, there's that DUH! feeling, which to me is an indicator of some concept moving from my head to my heart.
     I was in a webinar last night with my magnificent mentor, Dr. Chris Michaels, and he was speaking of how everything has a lifespan.  Here's the quote he offered:
"Spiritual leaders know that everything has a lifespan. An approach or strategy that used to work perfectly in an organization will go through a period where it moves from totally effective to completely ineffective.  In the end, everything must change and everything that used to work, stops working.  Those who resist this natural phenomenon will become stagnant and immaterial.  Those who embrace it will adapt to change by creating new strategies and remain relevant."
     Everything, whether in an organization or life in general, has a lifespan! For years I have struggled mightily with the concepts of failure and disappointment. This idea of lifespan ends that struggle. I am completely content with the idea of things naturally and organically passing into other more dynamic things. Oh, yes, it's a DUH!, I realize. But it takes a huge burden off my spirit, and for that I am crazy grateful.
     Going with the flow,

Friday, April 18, 2014

Some Fun and Useful Stuff

     There's an app for that. Of course there is! This post is about some fun things I've found to be useful in terms of supporting my positive attitude in life.
     Using Google Drive, I've created several documents that show up both on my laptop and on my smartphone, which can be updated from either place, and the changes show up right away on the other device. I have three files I especially like and use daily:
     1. My goals--this file includes those, as well as my vision, core values, and my list of goals completed.
     2. A list of inspirational/motivational quotes.
     3. My Win List--this comes from Inspired & Unstoppable by Tama Kieves. It's a daily notation of successes and instances wherein the Universe has supported me. It's not a to-do list check-off, it's more powerful than that. An example: "Retirement planning meeting indicates we are in WAY better shape for retirement than we realized!" It's an awesome thing to see a long list of wins piling up.
     I'm training myself, for instance while sitting and waiting, to review these files rather than play a game on my phone.
     An app that's fun and useful is BugMe--you can create "post-it notes to self" that pop up on your phone at scheduled time(s) each day. It's a great way to keep affirmations or goals in front of you.
     Dang, why didn't I get a smartphone sooner?!?
Having more fun than ever,

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Inner Resources

This item is from The Tao of Leadership by John Heider, based on Lao Tzu's Tao Te Ching:
     "To know how other people behave takes intelligence, but to know myself takes wisdom. To manage other people's lives takes strength, but to manage my own life takes true power.
     "If I am content with what I have, I can live simply and enjoy both prosperity and free time. If my goals are clear, I can achieve them without fuss. If I am at peace with myself, I will not spend my life force in conflicts. If I have learned to let go, I do not need to fear."

     I have been presented in several ways recently with the idea of living simply. As I get older, it seems that there is too much stuff around me that requires either a little or a lot of care. I prefer experiences, interactions, free time more than stuff. A couple days ago I met a super-friendly golden retriever out on a walk with his master. I was instantly his new best friend (though he had never sniffed me before), giving me again the gentle reminder that life is all about love, and that pretty much covers it.
     Living in love, loving my life,

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Here to Live and Love

These are the words of Rev. Bob Luckin:
"While you are here in this body, love, laugh, smile, and ask millions of questions. Sing out loud, especially where there is an echo. Dance as long as you can and walk until your feet will no longer move. Swim in the ocean, a lake, and a pond. Walk in a stream or river. Climb a hill or a mountain. Play in the snow at least once. Imitate a songbird, kiss a dog on the nose, and rub its belly with both hands. Listen to the rain and clap when you hear thunder. Laugh with a baby. Hold hands with someone special. Greet a stranger like a long-lost friend. Buy a cup of coffee for someone you don't know. Share a box of homemade cookies. Write a poem about love. Write a letter to someone you admire. See as many sunsets and sunrises as you can. Fill your thoughts with love and watch as they lift you and others. Dream the grandest of dreams. Speak to everyone who smiles. Greet strangers with warm eyes. Make up amazing stories and change them daily. When things don't go your way, change your way. If you fall down, stay down until you realize that picking yourself up is a choice you get to make."

Loving life, spreading joy,

Monday, April 7, 2014

Dancing in Church

     Say what? Dancing in church?!?!?
     I was at the Kansas City Center for Spiritual Living yesterday, and the Music Director, Monique Danielle, ROCKS! She has a voice that easily can transport one all over the emotional spectrum, from tears to leaping off one's chair to dance. She sang, "New Attitude," and trust me, this isn't a reserved, toe-tapping crowd--we jumped up to dance. What fun! Isn't Spirit within us a source of joy, energy, movement, celebration?
     What a blessed weekend I had, to be able to share the loving energy of this place and its inspired people. In case you'd like to check it out:
     Have an exciting week!

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Springtime, green grass, heaven!

     I finally started the spring garden cleanup. From inside it looks like work, but once I get out there, I love it. It is work, but I love being outside in the sunshine and the satisfaction of physical labor, even though most of my effort goes into the trash (weeds, etc.). The earth has blessed me again with beautiful daffodils and the greenery of tulips I planted last fall. I can hardly wait to see what colors I bought! :)
     Even more bonus! Yesterday was opening day of baseball season. I LOVE baseball, primarily following the Cubs and the Royals. I feel great joy and gratitude at being here for another opening day. I'm excited to get to see a few games in person again this year.
     And yet another delight of this April--I begin next Tuesday teaching yoga at The Body Studio (it's the former InnerWorks yoga group) at 4800 West Maple, Suite 124, Wichita. With a new, permanent location, the directors are expanding the yoga class offerings, and we will be doing workshops, yoga series, and private lessons. Much potential there, just like the garden in springtime! The Body Studio's website (under development) is
     What about springtime is heaven for you?

Friday, March 28, 2014

More from Tama Kieves: What's your story?

      Tama was once encouraged to pay attention to the kinds of "stories" she told herself. The reason being, "We live the stories we tell ourselves. When you really start to get conscious about this, you realize there are no neutral viewpoints. ... A loving narration leads to a loving life."
      One example that makes me giggle (now) is that my dad said multiple times, "There is NO musical talent in the Miller family." Looking back, I see that he probably didn't want to bear the ear-trauma of musical instrument practice. I proved this "story" several times when I failed the chorus try-out, and later attempted with no success to take piano lessons. I gave up and scored the musical talent by marrying a very skilled musician, and our sons are quite musically talented. (I didn't tell them what my dad said till after they were well on their way musically.)
      Pay attention to the stories you tell yourself and tell about yourself. Since you are the author of those stories, you can change them at any time if they don't support your joy and happiness.
      Have a glorious spring-time weekend!

Friday, March 21, 2014

Set them free.

      Here's a quote from Inspired & Unstoppable by Tama Kieves:
“But here’s what I want you to do with all the people you meet. Set them free. Love their decisions. Love their indecision. Love their spirit. Love their fear and rigidity, their skepticism, frugality, or imperfect choices. Set them free. … You can’t judge people and touch their souls at the same time.
     WOW, some mighty words there. It is possible to set people free. I use my brother as an example. He and I differ quite a bit on political and military (he's a West Point grad) topics. Yet I adore and love him so much, I can let all that just blow on by. I set him free and focus on the love I feel for him. It's quite useful to find an example of setting someone free, and I'm guessing we all have such an example, just to prove it can be done. Then we can move ahead and set others free. What a relief, not to be dragging around those judgments and annoyances!
     Ah, freedom. Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Thoughts on Eating--Simplify!!!

Good morning!
     I've been doing quite a bit of reading lately to support development of a yoga workshop I'll be offering later this spring. I especially enjoy the blog Yoga for Healthy Aging ( There is a variety of professionals who contribute to this blog, and it's very informative and gives me great ideas for my yoga practice and teaching. It doesn't matter how old you are now--healthy aging is something you might want to enjoy as the years fly by (and they do fly!).
    One article I read was on healthy eating. It made my head spin. There are so many studies and recommendations and do's and don'ts and shoulds and shouldn'ts. In my opinion, it's all exhausting, tiresome and unnecessary. It's MY body, my body is intelligent, it guides me to what's best for me, especially regarding fuel.
     My husband and I, over time, have named and use these two simple guidelines: 1) know the ingredients and 2) eat food that spoils. Knowing the ingredients of your food means that you don't need a chemistry degree to understand what's in the food. It also means that we make lots of things from scratch. Eating food that spoils means it's fresh and not overly processed. We strive for "simple food done well," and we have quite happy tummies. Best of all, we FEEL good and we are healthy.
     So I'd offer this suggestion: don't let anyone tell you what is the "right" food for your body, including me! Relax, figure it out for yourself, and enjoy!

Friday, March 14, 2014

Old Fart Friday

     Happy Old Fart Friday! That's a Friday evening when no activities are scheduled, and I can hang out at the house and relax. This is a particularly celebratory OFF, because for the first time in eons, I'm getting a net tax refund, which I learned today from doing our taxes. Big chore accomplished!
     So this is my OFF: made a home-made personal pizza, am enjoying a margarita, and I'm going to watch college basketball till I drop. Yep, I'm in heaven.
     Do you allow yourself, without guilt, to do what you really enjoy, regularly??!?!? I sure hope so!

Sunday, March 2, 2014

A Quote in Tribute to WSU Men's Basketball

     Yes, I'm nuts about college basketball--I follow six teams closely.
     Wichita State Shockers men's basketball made history yesterday with a 31-0 undefeated regular season. The attitude and coaching of these players has been an honor and joy to behold. Even folks who don't care about sports have been digging it.
     This quote is from ancient Chinese military general and philosopher, Sun Tzu:
"Victorious warriors win first and then go to war, while defeated warriors go to war and seek to win."
     These Shocker young men and their coaches are winners first, then they go play basketball. Please think on this quote a bit. There's a powerful life lesson there.
     GO, Shockers!

Thursday, February 27, 2014

A little mad, no, a lot mad!!!

     Imagine this...I'm a crazed college basketball fan, but my first (sports) love is baseball. I need no further proof of heaven on earth than March Madness, and before the Final Four even happens, opening day of baseball season is March 31 this year. I've cleaned the "woman cave" because that's where I'll be the next five weeks, watching basketball and baseball.
     There is absolutely nothing necessary about basketball or baseball, yet they are big dollar operations, and they've captured the hearts (and vocal cords) of millions. Let's hear it for fun! We take life WAY too seriously. Sports may not ring your chimes, but get out there and throw yourself into something that brings you joy! Life is good, celebrate it!
     Mad and loving it,

Friday, February 21, 2014

Posting What I Need to Remember

From the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous:
     "And acceptance is the answer to all my problems today. When I am disturbed, it is because I find some person, place, thing, or situation -- some fact of my life -- unacceptable to me, and I can find no serenity until I accept that person, place, thing or situation as being exactly the way it is supposed to be at this moment.
Nothing, absolutely nothing, happens in God's world by mistake. Until I could accept my alcoholism, I could not stay sober; unless I accept life completely on life's terms, I cannot be happy. I need to concentrate not so much on what needs to be changed in the world as on what needs to be changed in me and in my attitudes.
     For me, serenity began when I learned to distinguish between those things that I could change and those I could not. When I admitted that there were people, places, things, and situations over which I was totally powerless, those things began to lose their power over me. I learned that everyone has the right to make their own mistakes, and learn from them, without my interference, judgment, or assistance!"

Blessed weekend to all!

Monday, February 10, 2014


     I don't get angry very often, rarely, actually. Or so I thought. Tama Kieves, in her book, Inspired & Unstoppable, wrote: "Impatience is a form of anger." That statement certainly stopped me in my tracks.
     As I think on that sentence, yes, I have to agree, impatience is a form of anger. I'm hacked off that whatever I want is not with me right this instant. That the universal creative forces are not fast enough for me. That it seems no one is listening to my (mental) foot-stomping and demands.
     And to offer a different perspective, I offer this quote from May Sarton: “It does not astonish or make us angry that it takes a whole year to bring into the house three great white peonies and two pale blue iris.” Of course not-I'm a gardener, so I truly appreciate the magnificent divine timing of nature. Hmmm, maybe that divine timing applies to my life, too?
     Developing patience,

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Beauty and Gratitude

     My "woman cave" office looks out on our backyard garden, which is now buried in about 7" of pristine snow. The sun is making it sparkle. It is awesomely beautiful.
     I consider things I am grateful for... the eyes to see this beauty and sparkle, the much-needed moisture in our area, the fact that I can stay home and work and be warm, the quiet a blanket of snow provides, the knowing of the vibrant life that is dormant below the whiteness. Is there something in this moment that you are especially grateful for?
     Sparkle on!

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Yet another huge blessing--airbnb

     I just said good-bye to my ninth set of airbnb guests. What's airbnb?
     It's an international hospitality company with a website ( that enables hosts to list space online for travelers to rent for one or more nights. There are over 350,000 hosts worldwide. It started, literally, with a San Francisco man who rented an air mattress in his home during a convention that had all the city's hotels completely sold out. He did it to pay the rent, and it's blossomed into an awesome organization joyfully connecting people from all over the world.
     When I learned about airbnb last summer, by staying with an airbnb host, I was immediately hooked. We are empty-nesters with two open bedrooms--we'd been sitting on a "gold mine" and didn't know it! I have had guests from as far away as Thailand. I've met and enjoyed many wonderful people. It's a very self-regulating system because after the stay, the host reviews the guest, and vice versa. It's fully based on the belief that people are good.
     What an awesome blessing this has been in my life! For me, it's getting PAID to keep the house clean, with the added bonus of meeting great folks I would not otherwise meet. It's a huge blessing to the world, as all these personal connections are bit-by-bit creating more love, joy, and peace in our world.
     Check into it--it may not be for you, but it may open up a whole new world.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Happy All The Time?

     Because I am generally in a good mood, someone asked me recently if I'm happy all the time. That question makes me giggle. Hell, no, I'm not happy all the time. If I were, I wouldn't appreciate all the time I am happy. It seems the downer times prove to be a good contrast in life.
     Abraham Lincoln is credited with saying, "Most people are as happy as they make up their minds to be." I fully agree with the wise Abe that happiness is my choice, independent of outside circumstances. If I'd allow outer circumstances to gauge my happiness, what a powerless drag that would be.
     Today so far is a rather "shitty mood" day. I also note that during those times when I'm not feeling very cheerful, there are a lot of instances of "should" or "shouldn't" in my self-talk. Hmmm!
     I also know what will support my drawing upon my inner well of happiness. To set aside those things that are annoying me, and let something greater than me handle the details for awhile. Everything works out just fine, this I'm sure of.
     So I'm off to tap into my "happy" reservoir.
     Have a great weekend!

Friday, January 10, 2014

Oh, well!

     I'm reading the awesome book, Inspired & Unstoppable, by Tama Kieves. (I'll be doing a yoga series and then a book study on this book in Feb/Mar/April.)
     One anecdote Ms. Kieves relates is about a therapist she saw for a while. Ms. Kieves would go into a therapy session ranting, whining, crying over something, and her therapist would just say, "Oh, well." Ms. Kieves considered this an inadequate, insensitive response, until she learned the wisdom of it.
     She could hang onto the distressing situation, make it her story, and put lots of energy into indignation and making others wrong. Or she could say, "oh, well," let it go, and move on to more meaningful things.
     Letting go makes pretty good sense, I'd say.
     "Oh, well."

Saturday, January 4, 2014

I've figured it out! What enlightenment is for me...

     First some background. I'm a dedicated lap swimmer, and for 16 consecutive years, I have swum over 100 miles each year. Being a "numbers person" and quite anal-retentive, I keep track of my laps in a spreadsheet. In 2013, I decided to be exceptionally rigid with my swim schedule, swim 90 laps a week, and once a month, swim a full mile (36 laps), and see if I could break my previous record. I did it, ending with just over 133 miles.
     Start 2014. I have decided this year to give myself complete freedom in how often and how many laps I swim. My inner roommate (that voice in my head) has gone bonkers. "How can you be sure you'll make 100 miles?" "What if you miss one or more swims a month?" "Are you sure it's a good enough swim if you only do as much as you FEEL like doing?" The inner roommate is quite nervous about my intentions!
     I was discussing this with my husband in a most comical way, which led me to the enlightenment about my enlightenment. That will be when I go swim and don't even count my laps, much less record them in a spreadsheet. I've planted a seed here, but I can tell from my resistance that this seed will take a LONG time to sprout. It's certainly a worthy freedom to aspire to, swimming for the pure pleasure of it, not to reach some mileage goal. I'll just have to keep you posted on my progress. Baby steps...
     Life is good!