Thinking of you

Dear Fellow Journalers,

Today I begin a new series of posts I tentatively title ” Thinking of you”. I will be posting every Friday. The posts will be short but designed to make you think. Hope you like them. Feedback will be appreciated!!


“You are the books you read, the films you watch, the music you listen to, the people you meet, the dreams you have, the conversations you engage in. You are what you take from these. You are the sound of the ocean, the breath of fresh air, the brightest light and the darkest corner. You are a collective of every experience you have had in your life. So drown yourself in a sea of knowledge and existence.. Let the words run through your veins and let the colors fill your mind.”  Jac Vanck


37 Things you’ll regret when you’re old

Dear Fellow Journalers,

These 37 items comes from a blog named Lessons Learned from Life:

  1. Not traveling when you had the chance. Traveling becomes infinitely harder the older you get, especially if you have a family and need to pay the way for three-plus people instead of just yourself.

  2. Not learning another language. You’ll kick yourself when you realize you took three years of language in high school and remember none of it.

  3. Staying in a bad relationship. No one who ever gets out of a bad relationship looks back without wishing they made the move sooner.

  4. Forgoing sunscreen. Wrinkles, moles, and skin cancer can largely be avoided if you protect yourself.

  5. Missing the chance to see your favorite musicians. “Nah, dude, I’ll catch Nirvana next time they come through town.” Facepalm

  6. Being scared to do things. Looking back you’ll think, What was I so afraid of?

  7. Failing to make physical fitness a priority. Too many of us spend the physical peak of our lives on the couch. When you hit 40, 50, 60, and beyond, you’ll dream of what you could have done.

  8. Letting yourself be defined by gender roles. Few things are as sad as an old person saying, “Well, it just wasn’t done back then.”

  9. Not quitting a terrible job. Look, you gotta pay the bills. But if you don’t make a plan to improve your situation, you might wake up one day having spent 40 years in hell.

  10. Not trying harder in school. It’s not just that your grades play a role in determining where you end up in life. Eventually you’ll realize how neat it was to get to spend all day learning, and wish you’d paid more attention.

  11. Not realizing how beautiful you were. Too many of us spend our youth unhappy with the way we look, but the reality is, that’s when we’re our most beautiful.

  12. Being afraid to say “I love you.” When you’re old, you won’t care if your love wasn’t returned — only that you made it known how you felt.

  13. Not listening to your parents’ advice. You don’t want to hear it when you’re young, but the infuriating truth is that most of what your parents say about life is true.

  14. Spending your youth self-absorbed. You’ll be embarrassed about it, frankly.

  15. Caring too much about what other people think. In 20 years you won’t give a darn about any of those people you once worried so much about.

  16. Supporting others’ dreams over your own. Supporting others is a beautiful thing, but not when it means you never get to shine.

  17. Not moving on fast enough. Old people look back at the long periods spent picking themselves off the ground as nothing but wasted time.

  18. Holding grudges, especially with those you love. What’s the point of re-living the anger over and over?

  19. Not standing up for yourself. Old people don’t take sh*t from anyone. Neither should you.

  20. Not volunteering enough. OK, so you probably won’t regret not volunteering Hunger Games style, but nearing the end of one’s life without having helped to make the world a better place is a great source of sadness for many.

  21. Neglecting your teeth. Neglecting your teeth. Brush. Floss. Get regular checkups. It will all seem so maddeningly easy when you have dentures.

  22. Missing the chance to ask your grandparents questions before they die. Most of us realize too late what an awesome resource grandparents are. They can explain everything you’ll ever wonder about where you came from, but only if you ask them in time.

  23. Working too much. No one looks back from their deathbed and wishes they spent more time at the office, but they do wish they spent more time with family, friends, and hobbies.

  24. Not learning how to cook one awesome meal. Knowing one drool-worthy meal will make all those dinner parties and celebrations that much more special.

  25. Not stopping enough to appreciate the moment. Young people are constantly on the go, but stopping to take it all in now and again is a good thing.

  26. Failing to finish what you start. Failing to finish what you start. “I had big dreams of becoming a nurse. I even signed up for the classes, but then…”

  27. Never mastering one awesome party trick. You will go to hundreds, if not thousands, of parties in your life. Wouldn’t it be cool to be the life of them all?

  28. Letting yourself be defined by cultural expectations. Letting yourself be defined by cultural expectations. Don’t let them tell you, “We don’t do that.”

  29. Refusing to let friendships run their course. People grow apart. Clinging to what was, instead of acknowledging that things have changed, can be a source of ongoing agitation and sadness.

  30. Not playing with your kids enough. When you’re old, you’ll realize your kid went from wanting to play with you to wanting you out of their room in the blink of an eye.

  31. Never taking a big risk (especially in love). Knowing that you took a leap of faith at least once —even if you fell flat on your face — will be a great comfort when you’re old.

  32. Not taking the time to develop contacts and network. Networking may seem like a bunch of crap when you’re young, but later on it becomes clear that it’s how so many jobs are won.

  33. Worrying too much. As Tom Petty sang, “Most things I worry about never happen anyway.”

  34. Getting caught up in needless drama. Who needs it?

  35. Not spending enough time with loved ones. Our time with our loved ones is finite. Make it count.

  36. Never performing in front of others. This isn’t a regret for everyone, but many elderly people wish they knew — just once — what it was like to stand in front of a crowd and show off their talents.

  37. Not being grateful sooner.

It can be hard to see in the beginning, but eventually it becomes clear that every moment on this earth — from the mundane to the amazing — is a gift that we’re all so incredibly lucky to share.


A little bit of this and that

Dear Fellow Journalers,,

I don’t know about you, but I am pretty much frustrated with all the goings on in my town, state, country. Life is hard enough without the negativity that surrounds us on a daily basis. Some days it is really hard to write about anything positive so I decided to take a break and offer you a little bit of what I have seen lately that will, hopefully take you away from the stresses you are under. This first bit is a piece I saw in the New Haven Register dated September 20, 2018. It is a story by Bob Story entitled ” How to give your cat a pill.” I must warn you, this piece is really funny!

” Pick cat up and cradle it in the crook of your left arm as though holding a baby. Position right forefinger and thumb on the other side of cat’s mouth, and gently apply pressure to his cheeks. When cat open up, pop pill into mouth. Cat will then close mouth and swallow.

Retrieve pill from floor and cat from behind sofa. Repeat the process. Retrieve cat from bedroom, and throw soggy pill away. Kneel on floor with cat wedged between knees, immobilizing front and rear paws. Ask assistant  to hold cat’s head firmly with one hand while forcing wooden ruler into cat’s throat. Flick pill down ruler with forefinger, and rub cat’s throat vigorously.

Retrieve cat from living room curtain valance. Carefully sweep shattered figurines from hearth, and set aside for later gluing. Remove next pill from foil wrap.

Wrap cat in beach towel, and ask assistant to lie prone on cat with cat’s head visible under assistant’s armpit. Put pill in end of paper tube you’ve made for this purpose. Then force cat’s mouth open with pencil and blow.

Check label to make sure pill is not lethal to humans. Apply bandage to assistant’s forearm, and remove blood from carpet with soap and cold water.

Call 911 and ask fire department to retrieve cat from eucalyptus tree. Remove remaining pill from foil wrap. Tie cat’s front paws to rear paws with garden twine, and securely tie leg of dining table. Put on heavy-duty pruning gloves. Force cat’s mouth open with tire iron. Drop pill, previously hidden in one ounce raw hamburger into cat’s mouth. Hold head vertically with nose pointed to ceiling and pour one-half pint of water down cat’s throat.

Ask assistant to drive you to emergency room, Sit quietly while doctor administers anesthetic, stitches forearm and removes pill remnants from eye. Drop off cat, along with a generous donation, at animal shelter, and adopt a goldfish.”

Don’t try this at home!



Unread books

Dear Fellow Journalers,

How many unread books are on your bookshelf? Do you have a wish list on Good Reads or on an e-reader? Stop worrying! You have an Antilibrary.

Umberto Eco writes that “read books are far less valuable than unread ones.” The theory is based on the idea that knowing what we don’t know is more important than knowing what we do.

If  you have  growing library of books that you haven’t read yet don’t despair. Don’t feel as though there’s a giant time clock somewhere that ticks away your reading minutes. Having unread books means that you’re interested in new information. It means you have a healthy curiosity. It means you’re a person who cares about your life.

My list of self-care unread books include the following:

“If I understood you, would I have this look on my face?” by Alan Alda

“The Glass Castle” by Jeannette Walls

“Be in a Treehouse” by Pete Nelson

“Rising Strong” by Brene Brown

“The Culper Ring” Charles Rivers Editors

“The Bookshop of Yesterdays” by Amy Meyerson

“We need to talk: How to have conversations that matter” by Celeste Headlee

“The Joy of Stress” by Loretta LaRoche

“Igniting the American Revolution 1773-1775” by Derek W. Beck

So what’s on your unread shelf?


Self-Care Strategies

Dear Fellow Journalers,

Self-Care journaling is the ultimate self-care activity. It’s something you do for yourself. We’ve been on this journey of self-discovery for a while now (see post on mindfulness) so for those of you who have been journaling and reading this blog, some of what I am about to say will sound familiar.

When we write we tell our stories. We translate experiences to words, feelings to language, senses to thoughts. We have to be honest for this to work. Remember, we can still destroy our journals – wait! Did I just write that?? Our first great step is to breathe. Set a timer for 5 minutes. Create a sanctuary and focus.


Be your own best friend. Sometimes we get really down on ourselves. We reach the end of our rope and hang on waiting for someone to notice, pick us up. We cry for help and then realize that help is coming from us. When we’re writing “stream of consciousness” we need to remember to let our thoughts and feelings drift. Don’t second guess yourself. Don’t correct your grammar. Don’t forget to have fun! If your journaling becomes annoying or confusing be good to yourself. Put your pen down and do something to bring joy to your life.

Thinking of you,


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