love is powerful

I can’t even express how proud I am that I created these two amazing humans and they created this brilliant bond for one another …. And support each other and surprise everyone and go to extra effort to share in the excitement of a big accomplishment like qualifying for varsity and running regionals … and rearranging their own ncaa training schedule the week before conference … I am bursting with pride that our little family is not as dysfunctional as how I grew up, and we are all making the world a better place ….

birthday thoughts

What am I doing today (and this year) to keep myself off autopilot? A daily dose of novelty!

Live an authentic life, not an anesthetized one. I want to feel everything, even if it’s hard or uncomfortable. Instead of running away from the world, we can find escape by immersing ourselves in it.

Whenever I find myself feeling jealous, flip it to find some of that for my life. Quote from Ferris Bueller “you could ditch.”

WWTD. I give moments power, tell my story, and transform my suffering so I don’t transmit it. I won’t keep old wounds open as evidence of a trial that will never come.

The mind-body-spirit-connection is the tension of being alive. All working together, the nervous system, consciousness, dreams, cell regeneration….

Believe in the power of the incremental, habits and consistency are the keys to a well-lived life.

Treat emotions like a compass, pointing you in a the right direction. happiness is not the same as pleasure.

I deserve to live in peace. be still and know.

Don’t break promises you make to yourself. Do something today that your future self will thank you for.

I can think expansive thoughts. I am the universe. I am an abundance of love, light, peace and growth.


I picked one little word for 2022, and I chose “surf” because I hoped I could channel the phrase “surf the urge” when I craved sugar. It was a verb to me… but the more I brought surf to the surface and to my attention, I noticed the noun showing up everywhere …. podcasts, tv shows, the Jimmy Buffet channel in my new car, book titles, movie cameos from Bethany Hamilton. So interesting!

We can’t stop the waves, but we can learn how to surf!

I thought of ways to use this word intentionally; couch surf, channel surf, crowd surf …. I learned surfing lingo in sign language class, used it as a writing prompt, and kept the message top of mind that I can harness the energy from the sun and waves and create the life I dream of. Ride the wave. Go with the flow. We don’t have to sink or swim, we can float/surf. And stay grounded on a strong foundation, but still moving in alignment with the universe!

I don’t need easy, I just need possible – Bethany Hamilton

a big wave, swell, surge, ripple, ocean, foam …

I’ve never experienced large surf or hurricane. Waves always calm my soul. They’re just magic to me.

Sun. Sand. Salt Water.

If I ever have a boat I’m naming it Seas The Day 🏄

Under the water where you can’t see, an underground canyon/cliff produces the worlds biggest wave in Portugal.

Brave wait patiently and then Commit

Perfect Wave, need cooperation

from the sea

Dangerous POWER of the Sea,

the Ocean’s Energy

Cross between Danger zone & Playground, the rescues are dangerous .

I didn’t know there would be hurricane Ian or a trip to Florida in my future when I picked this word!

I picked this word as a verb to help me overcome sugar cravings & surf the urge. It hasn’t really worked for that, but I have been delighted to find this word SURF popping up in other places. And the messages really help me feel aligned.

From showing up in the tv shows I watched to podcasts and book titles. Also, meeting new people at our local hangout who surf the Lake Michigan waves. Leading me to my trip in Clearwater. And that work and life is a wave of craziness too that I just need to surf. And enjoy the ride!

CK, Surf, Dolphin ….
I am where I’m supposed to be
9 days left this year and what a find! How fun! Santa’s Surf Shack


What’s your favorite part about being an Earthling? Sunsets? Sound of Rain? Wind in your face? Waves crashing? Campfire crackles? Baby giggles?

Earth 🌍

🐙 🐢 🌊 🐟 🐬 🐳 🐋 🦈

Love ❤️


Dolphins 🐬

Sun ☀️ ⭐️ 🌙

Chocolate 🍫

Birds 🦅

Coffee ☕️

Autumn Leaves 🍁 🍂

Water 💦

Beaches 🏝

Naps 😴

Books 📚

Movies 🍿

Music 🎶

Art 🎨

Adventures 🚘

Baseball ⚾️


Some of the most important things I’ve learned so far ….

I want to be known as a photojournalist of an ordinary life. If you pay attention to the ordinary, the extraordinary will take care of itself.

Rx: Daily Dose of Novelty

Be Kind. Be Brave. Be Curious.

Creation is quiet. Destruction is noisy. WWTD?

Am I interested or committed to my goal?

Heal! I’m keeping it around as evidence of a trial that will never come.

I am an abundance of love, light, peace and growth. whatever follows I am comes looking for you …

Be still & know. Meditate.

How can I help?

Time has memory. Space has energy.

Habits are greater than goals or resolutions.

Believe in the power of the incremental. Every action you take is a vote for the person you are trying to become.

I can control my behavior, attitude, actions and words. Words have vibrations and create energy.

Money and energy are just tools, not the goal.

*thermostat *compass *map *hourglass

Pleasure does not equal happiness.

How can I make today better? sun, wind, water, campfire, write, nap, hammock, candle, dolphins, book, podcast, massage …

What do I want to remember about today? The question I want to ask myself and my family and friends ….

Lake Michigan

Recently, I drove up to Winthrop Harbor to watch the beautiful Sunrise. Sometimes I feel like the sun and birds put on this magical show just for me. I am always drawn to Lake Michigan, and began remembering all of the special moments the Lake has given me. Both my son and my sister live right off Lake Michigan. I graduated college at Navy Pier. I have cried on the shores during the pandemic. I’ve meditated to the waves.

When I hiked the 43 Lake County Trails, the ones near Lake Michigan always floated to the top, and Fort Sheridan has a special place in my heart. I have seen my son run a cross country meet along the shore. I have completed the Polar Plunge 4 times in Lake Michigan (once as an extra on a TV show). 


When I fly overhead (Milwaukee, O’Hare or Midway) it always feels like home.  I climbed a lighthouse in Milwaukee and had a beautiful view of Lake Michigan. I used to eat my lunch outside by the lake the entire summer of 1994 when I had an internship at the Shedd Aquarium. I enjoy hearing the waves crash behind me as the band sings on stage at Summerfest. I remember looking out at the Lake after climbing 1,632 stairs of the Hancock Building (5 times). I have fond memories of viewing the Chicago Air and Water Show from my sister’s rooftop pool.  Catching a glimpse of the Lake from our seats at the Bears Game or Wrigley Field if the sky is clear.

I remember our fun adventure of taking bicycles on the Metra and riding along the Lakefront last summer. Enjoying Taste of Chicago and Buckingham Fountain on the shores of Lake Michigan.  I ended High School Prom with a nighttime cruise. I’ve seen fireworks at Navy Pier.  Chaperoning the Kindergarten field trip to Lincoln Park Zoo and driving by. Walking along the shore before our sleepover at the Shedd and Dozin’ with Dinos at the Field Museum.  Splashing in the rocky beach at Illinois Beach State Park. Meditating to the Waves at the St. Mary’s retreat in Racine.  Watching the sunset on the shores of Michigan while I lived there in 1993.  Running a ½ marathon and Hot Chocolate 15K along the Lake path. And finishing my 60 mile breast cancer walk at Grant Park (twice); where the WonderBra’ds solidified our forever friendship.

I have a love affair with Lake Michigan. I love to visit as often as I can.


I have a super power of making a 5.5 hour drive take 10 hours because I can’t NOT stop at the scenic overlooks or Little Cubs Field. But that was the beauty of my trip to Minnesota this weekend, I was on my own schedule and I had the whole day off to drive there. I followed the Illinois and Wisconsin Great River Road along the Mississippi River. My drive was full of white farmhouses with front porches and rocking chairs. Red barns sprinkled in the rolling hills of corn and soybeans. Donkeys, cows, goats, birds and leaves just beginning to change colors. The drive was varied between Amish Wagons, legal ATVs on the road and busses in the left lane (HOV). I saw the sunset as I was pulling up to my hotel.

After I checked in at the hotel, I ran to the hot tub, I love when you take a deep breath arms fall to your side but they float. It’s a lovely metaphor for my life right now. You don’t have to sink or swim, you can float. The bubbles add a little movement so you feel alive and relaxed and not stiff. Swimming and water makes my joints, especially my knees finally feel pain-free. I gravitate towards anything water … even just driving along the river instead of corn fields. This was a lovely way to end my day.


Saturday morning, I started exploring Northfield and realized the whole town smells like Malt-O-Meal. And everyone really is MINNESOTA-NICE. The only graffiti I saw was super cute (Olaf the snowman) and written in chalk.  I walked along the Cannon River, saw the Ames Mill Dam.  I stopped in front of the First National Bank of Northfield, the last Jesse James robbery. Downtown was adorable and full of books and art and coffee! I grabbed a vanilla cinnamon roll from the Brick Oven Bakery and headed to my hotel as the weather took a turn for the worse.  I took a short nap during the storm and woke up just in time to head to the Cross Country Meet.


St. Olaf’s campus can be described by a windmill, ice rink and beach volleyball court. I cheered very loudly for my son! And stayed to watch his team take 8th out of 25. And then headed to the Farmer’s River Market, which closed at 1pm.  I took a quick picture of the LOVE mural and grabbed an iced coffee from the Hideaway Coffee House and went on an adventure to downtown Minneapolis. On my way back, I visited the Fireside Apple Orchard and Gardens and purchased some yummy food for myself and a friend. I meandered around the Content Bookstore until they closed at 5:30.  I had a beer outside next-door at the Contented Cow.  I watched the sunset on the Bridge over the Cannon River. And headed back to my favorite place (hot tub).


I felt a little like Megan (Melissa McCarthy’s character in the movie Bridesmaids when she took too many puppies) where I overcommitted and booked a vine harvesting wine experience from 8-2:30 on Sunday … but after adulting and realizing I have 148 unread work emails before Monday AM I decided to just drive home when I woke up! And I ditched out on my $25 t-shirt and wine experience.


I seem to always live my life like the world is rolling the credits and I just have this once chance to see and do everything I want to. Which was actually proven to be true as my wonderful memories of Keegan’s Irish Pub and Finnegan’s Brewery couldn’t be recreated this trip as Keegan’s went out of business and Finnegan’s was closed for a private event, even after my hour long drive up there… I am so grateful for this time to myself and random inexpensive adventures.

De Pere


I spent 24 hours in De Pere, Wisconsin (Pronounced Da-Pier) and it was amazing for my soul! I took 1 vacation day, drove my husband to work, delivered Starbucks to my high schooler, dropped him off at school, got past Whitefish Bay, turned around to drop off college kid stuff for him…. Finally got to De Pere at 1pm (should have been less than a 3 hour drive). It took a tank of gas to drive there and back. The 24 hrs I spent in the city limits of De Pere and Green Bay were action packed! 26k steps, 371 photos, 2 beers, 1 dip on the hot tub and only 128 unread work emails (I thought it would be wayyyy worse), and 107 finishers in the men’s 6K race. I only spent money on hotel, food and gas. All of my sightseeing and adventures were free!

On Friday I hiked Wequiock Falls and saw love-locks hooked to the fence. Underneath the bridge is a really cool tunnel of graffiti!

Second, I stopped at the Bay Beach Wildlife Sanctuary, which is an amazing zoo-like area. I was nearly the only visitor as the sky opened up and it rained pretty hard on my entire visit, but I still loved that place.

Next was my most anticipated stop, Sabamba Alpaca Farm. I took selfies with the adorable alpaca and bought the softest and coziest socks I have ever owned.

I ‘accidentally’ drove my Lambeau Field and took a silly selfie, because, why not?

I checked in at my hotel and then was off to meet my old friend for dinner. She suggested Hinterland, and it was amazing. I embraced my location and had the Door County Cherry Wheat.

I experienced a true midwestern welcome. We closed out our bill at the restaurant and we’re offered to-go cups for our beer. We went on a tour around the atrium of Lambeau which I never would have know was open! The area around Lambeau has ping pong, shuffleboard, horseshoes all free and open. You can throw a pass or kick a field goal. Later that gorgeous evening we spent chatting around the firepit in her backyard, it was perfection.

In the morning, I woke up at 6am to enjoy the hot tub (one of my favorite things). After I checked out of the hotel, I walked through Voyageur Park and the DePere Riverwalk. The benches write their own poetry of the people of De Pere as you weave through the beautiful tree-lined river walk along the Fox River. The dam and lock were garnished with love-locks. Dozens of bird species serenaded me.

I grabbed a cup of coffee at Luna Coffee (delish!) and went on a mural hunt around town. Every corner was a new mural or piece of public art!

Then it was time for why I really drove up there. Walking up to tent village gave me the best kind of butterflies. This is the reason I made the trip! I’m so grateful for the nice weather, for my son not having an injury, for the whole team not having COVID, for the pandemic to be under control enough to have a season and spectators. All of it! The familiar sound of portopotty doors slamming faded as the national anthem began. The cheers of all the teams pumping each other up right before the starting gun is a brilliant melody I have truly missed these last 9+ months. Cross Country is one of the most wonderful sports.


My political views can be described as EMPATHY. I vote so that our leaders and our laws help the greatest number of us.

I’m not sure how that’s controversial.

Pro-Life says much more about your socioeconomic status than it does about your morality.
Pro-Life would really look like:
*20 Sandy Hook Students in Driver’s Ed
*zero teen suicide (especially lgbtq teens!)
*420,000+ children in foster care adopted into loving homes
*universal healthcare
*paid maternity leave
*affordable childcare for everyone
*men having equal legal and financial responsibilities for unborn babies
*refugees have all the resources they need
*homelessness, hunger, poverty, racial inequality would all be resolved …

Please read about the views of who you plan to vote for and make sure they align with your personal values.

There are a lot of angry, greedy, uneducated voters that are not looking at the whole picture of our society and how we might be able to help one another.

Please make sure you understand the issues and how your vote impacts them, before you cast your ballot.

And remember, voting is public transportation, not marriage. You don’t have to find “the one”. You just need to pick the people going in the right direction!


As I started driving home away from nature my chest tightened up, my heart started racing, I couldn’t take a deep breath, I need more time alone. I need more time to just be.

I still have that pandemic feeling where you feel stuck at home, you feel stuck in your job, you just feel stuck in life and the only thing that shakes it up is movement outside and in nature.

A sinking feeling when you know you have to go home because it’s other people’s expectation and your family needs you. And this is what a good wife and a good mother and a good employee does…. They hold it together and keep being a high performer. I’m dragging my little red wagon full of responsibilities through all of these beautiful places but I never give myself permission to stop and breathe.

sunset, waves, peace

Today I did that.



And it was the best thing I could have done for my soul.