Inspiration

Are Small Tortures Really The Spice of Life?

Ever find yourself dreading something so much, you can’t think of anything else? Your heart beats fast. Your palms sweat. You lie awake at night. Yet afterwards you find yourself relieved and even happy? This happened to me this week when I had to face the biggest, scariest, most threatening task of all… I had … Read more »

A Vital (but scary) New Year’s Lesson…

  Sometimes an event happens that stops you in your tracks. It shakes and scares you. This happened to me the day after New Year’s. My husband Randy and I had hosted our second annual New Year’s Day “Basement Jam.” This is a party for musicians and their friends – – guitarists, drummers, bassists, and … Read more »

5 Awesome Things about Blogging (and The One Thing That’s Not Awesome)

Over the past five years, I’ve had people ask me a lot about blogging. Apparently there are tons of writers out there, hesitating over hitting that “publish” button. It got me thinking about why I do this strange thing. Here’s what I love about blogging and here’s the one awful, cringe-inducing thing I hate… First, … Read more »

What Are The 6 Most Annoying Holiday Songs?

You try and avoid them, but can’t. You hear them in cars, stores, lobbies, elevators, banks, the radio and on television. They stalk you like bill collectors. They’re everywhere — the most headache-inducing holiday songs. Here are mine in no particular order… “Santa Baby” by Madonna – Wow. She’s not called the Material Girl for … Read more »

The Suffragettes Would be Proud

All this election day I felt excitement. We were about to make history. Then one by one, states expected to be blue turned pink and then red. As someone said, “We showed up for a wedding but found ourselves at a funeral.” And even though Hillary won the popular vote, it wasn’t enough. For me, … Read more »

Who is Your Dream President?

Admit it. You watch these election speeches and rallies, and sometimes don’t you fantasize…just a little? Don’t you wish you could wave a magic wand and summon up the wisest, most courageous, and creative minds to guide us? I have. Some of my choices are living, some passed, some are even fictional, but they embody … Read more »

Who Are You on Facebook?

We often hear dozens of opinions on Facebook. For those who don’t like it, Facebook’s intrusive. The sidebar “ad-stalking” gets weird. There’s more information overload in one day than our ancestors probably received in a year… if not their lifetime. So why am I addicted? There’s only one answer. Facebook is fun. It’s become the … Read more »

Damn Those Olympics! They Get me Every Time.

Every two years I tell myself I’m not watching. After all, isn’t the Opening Ceremony kind of the same each time? Yes, some are better than others, but it’s usually a history lesson done to music with lots (and lots and lots) of movie extras. But then comes that moment. Those stadium doors open … Read more »

8 Amazing Perks to a Weekend Alone…

Have you ever had the urge to get away by yourself?  Just luxuriate in your own company? I recently spent a weekend alone, which was…okay…incredible.  And afterwards, I realized it helped in 8 vital ways… First, I didn’t have to go far.  I travelled thirty minutes to a beautiful seaside inn on Long Island Sound.  I had a lovely view of … Read more »

Who are You? Three Questions to Ask…

Fear and Kisses at the Blarney Stone

We’ve all been there. You’re in a situation that pushes all your buttons. But you don’t want to wimp out. You don’t want to be the panicked nut job of the group. This happened to me recently at Ireland’s Blarney Castle. What’s so hard about kissing a rock, I thought? I was to find out…. … Read more »

Still I Rise…

“Everyone in the world has gone to bed one night or another with fear, or pain, or loss, or disappointment – and yet each of us has awakened, arisen, somehow made our ablutions, seen other human beings and said: ‘Morning, how are you?’ ‘Fine, thanks – and you?” –Maya Angelou   I started reading about the … Read more »

6 Major Life Lessons…from Anthony Bourdain

  He travels. He writes. He swaggers. He hosts CNN’s “Parts Unknown” each Sunday.  Most episodes I come away a little older, a little wiser then when I first picked up the remote.  To that end, I see how Anthony has taught me 6 crucial life lessons. #1 — Stay Curious – The world is vast, exciting and scary.  Every … Read more »

A Place of Hope and Healing

I’ve never been good with hospitals.  I shiver when I walk their corridors, reading scary signs on walls and doors – Blood Drawing, X-ray, and Pathology.  I feel vulnerable, small and human. And yet over the past month, as I’ve come to visit my father in this Veteran’s Hospital outside New Haven, CT, something strange is happening. … Read more »

The Man with the Red Bandana

I see him around town sometimes.  The other day he was in our neighborhood coffee shop where I heard the lady behind the counter call him Ray.  He looks to be in his thirties with brown hair and always wears neatly-pressed khakis and a flannel shirt.  A red bandana is usually tied around his neck.  Whenever I see this … Read more »

Where Do You Find Peace?

Guru Deepak Chopra has struck again.  I saw one of his videos the other day which taught me something so simple, so easy, and yet so vital, I was amazed.  At first I didn’t believe such a simple act could work, but it did. Lately I’ve had trouble shutting out the world.  Each day we’re bombarded with … Read more »

5 Ways the Dying Teach Us to Live

You want to live your best life. Who doesn’t? But we don’t always know how. Australian author Bronnie Ware gives insight with her global bestseller, “The 5 Top Regrets of the Dying.” Having spent 8 years as a palliative nurse in hospice, she realized there are 5 universal regrets people with little time have… #1: “I … Read more »

3 Things I Longed to Tell that African American Man

The other day I was in my neighborhood grocery store when I encountered a tall, middle-aged African-American man stocking shelves.  He had a cart full of product and part of it blocked my way.  I looked at him, smiling, saying, “Excuse me.”  He turned and gazed at me, his eyes hard, face tight and unsmiling.  … Read more »

Does Your House Have a Soul?

You think they’re just wooden structures.  They’re containers, made to hold people and possessions.   Houses don’t have souls.  At least that’s how I felt until I drove by my old home of ten years.  That’s when my heart broke. Our beloved, beautiful house was abandoned. Our wonderful family home had ended up the neighborhood eyesore, … Read more »

How Journal-Keeping Saved Me

I became a journal keeper by accident.  I was 30 years old, sitting in a windowless cubicle, unhappy, my in-box piled with two feet of paper, layouts, project folders, and message slips.  The phone rang incessantly.  I had to do something fast. I considered walking out the front door when I spotted a white stenographer’s notebook.  I picked it up and started … Read more »

Five Things I Don’t Like about Facebook and One I Do…

Like a rocky love affair, I go back and forth with Facebook, ready to break up one day and welcoming it back with open keyboard the next. I’ve weighed the pros and cons and decided here are my top five gripes…   It’s like the school tattle tale.  Like many Facebookers, I’ve learned to watch every … Read more »

Can Life Begin Again at 80?

You think life is one way, but then realize its not. In fact, its different than you imagined. This happened to me recently when I had lunch with my mother who’s in her 80’s. That’s when I saw I have this whole aging thing wrong and maybe even backwards. Here’s what I discovered… You never … Read more »

Stitches and Prayers in the Emergency Room

  You know the feeling. You get comfortable in life until something pulls you out of your routine. You’re forced to stop, watch and listen. This happened last Good Friday when my 22 year-old son Paul ended up in the emergency room. Thankfully, it wasn’t serious, but the ER couldn’t be avoided. Paul sliced his … Read more »

A Strange (and Unexpected) Stirring For Hillary

I have to admit, I’ve never been a Hillary supporter. As a democrat, I’ve been rooting for Bernie. Yet I have to say, as she edges closer to snagging the democratic nomination and possibly the White House, a surprising feeling is emerging — amazement. We could have our first female President.  And that’s huge. But … Read more »

The Night Edgar Winter Taught Some Me Life Lessons

I thought my husband Randy was crazy for getting tickets to this concert. It was Monday night. The venue was small. I’d rather be home watching Netflix. But there we sat in the third row, surrounded by other mid-lifers, raring to relive the glory days. Edgar Winter came out. His band started, “Keep Playin’ that … Read more »

6 Surprising Reasons to Welcome Failure (“Pick the Brain”)

Posted on  by Laurie Stone

For most of us failure’s shameful, embarrassing, and even scary. Maybe it means you don’t have what it takes. Maybe this dream isn’t meant to be. What if everyone’s laughing or judging? …Read more

5 Speed Bumps You Encounter on the Way to Your Dream (and how to Get Over Them)  (“Pick the Brain”)

We’ve all been there. You want it so badly, you can taste it. You’re so close to that dream, you can touch it. But then something happens…  Read more

9 Things that Bring Hope

It’s been a tough week. Just when we think we can’t take any more violence, along it comes.  Like many, I find it hard not to despair.  I get that scared feeling in the pit of my stomach. That’s when I remember 9 things that always give me hope…

6 Reasons I’m Sorta Freaked Over 2016 (but One Strange Reason I’m Hopeful)

You know that nervous feeling you get before seeing a scary movie? The opening credits are barely rolling and you’re covering your eyes? That’s how I feel about this upcoming year. Call me crazy but its like we have several huge meteors out there in space, all ready to collide. Yes, for the following 6 … Read more »

How to Escape Stores Forever!

Some people love to shop and God bless them. But I see a strange phenomenon in my part of Connecticut. Retail stores are closing, lots of them. And when I look at those empty storefronts, I feel this odd, misplaced sense of guilt. Am I partly responsible? You see, I never, ever, walk into stores … Read more »

How John Lennon Saves Christmas

Do you feel pressure this time of year? Do you feel the need to get everything done…on time…on budget… and with a holiday smile? The other day my scrooge started kicking in. The to-list was growing. Trees, wreathes, cards, decorations, stockings, holly, cookies, gifts. I needed to get into the spirit. Then I turned on … Read more »

Who Were the Great Teachers in Your Life?

They taught you. They challenged you. They changed you. They’re the memorable teachers in your life. The other day I heard the rumble of a school bus and thought of those educators who made a difference. What made them special? What made them succeed? How did they get under that “school-sucks” barbed wire? Maybe it … Read more »

Thank a Bus Driver (Midlife Boulevard)

Laurie Stone has a great reason to appreciate bus drivers – and she likes to let them know she does. Read more from Laurie on her blog. The other day I was at my mailbox when I heard the familiar low rumble of a school bus.  I stood watching it drive past.  A young female driver sat behind the wheel, map in hand, learning her route before school begins.  I waved and she … [Read more…]

The 3:00 a.m. Creepy Crawlies (Midlife Boulevard)

Can you relate to hearing noises at night after watching a scary movie? Laurie Stone shares her experience with us below – and can be found over at Musings, Rants and Scribbles talking about lots more! Ever know you shouldn’t do something, but do it anyway? This happened to me recently when I happened to walk by my son watching a spooky movie about a possessed, haunted doll. … [Read more…

Farewell to Two Friends…

I lost two friends recently, one after a year-long illness and the other out of the blue, a sudden, tragic accident. My friend who died this week from illness was in his seventies, big and tall with curly gray hair.  He loved good food and wine and was a great host.  Many times I’d watch him hold … Read more »