from my 80 year old self

Spring columbine shoots 🙂

Dear Vicki,

It’s not too late!

Every day is a new opportunity to live fully, to be present for and embrace the life you’ve been given. Make a point each day to be quiet and still and to fill your heart with gratitude and to open your being to love and joy. Take whatever form shows up – let go of any stories about how things should or should not be, or what is ‘good’ or ‘bad’.

Move your body and care for it well. Notice what it needs and give to it kindly. It is an amazing thing – all your cells and flesh and bones and organs, and all the things it allows you to experience as a human being. You can see, hear, smell, taste, feel – view, read, talk, listen to music and birds, hear the sounds of life around you, smell cake baking in the oven, rain on hot pavement, the rich woodland of evergreens. Oh, the tastes you can experience!

Enjoy all that is possible. OPEN. Let yourself fall into being fully alive, unreserved. Reach for your husband’s hand, call your friend, sleep in without guilt, dig in the garden all day, sit outside taking in the warmth of the sun, go for a long walk. Even dance a little. You don’t have to be good, just enjoy it, feel it, let energy move through you.

Don’t get too wrapped up in the past or anticipate too much what the future holds. Be present for what’s available here and now. Go ahead. Be vulnerable. You are strong and courageous and beautiful. Let your life open fully and dance into it with all your body and soul.


Your 80-year-old-self

I wrote this letter to myself as a recommended activity when I was moving through The Artist’s Way. I came across the hand-written message tucked in the back of my personal journal, having just finished filling all the pages and about to put it on the shelf. Oh, that I should someday be 80 and be able to look back and say that I followed this wisdom!

What would your 80-year-old-self say to you?

the gift of now


the gift of now

to be where
we think
we should be
we miss
the opportunity
of the present

to know
the future’s plans
we move
right past
the chance
to sense
this moment’s grace

out of habit
we walk
without awareness
of the beautiful nuance
available in our current experience

to the gift
of now
we open
and feel
fully alive


This poem, similar to last week’s (a simple dream), evolved from noticing myself expecting that I should be doing something more or that I should be somewhere else. I find myself in a hurry to know what the future holds, as if the days will somehow be richer if I just know.

And then grace enters the room, I catch myself getting ahead, begin to wonder why I’m rushing, and find what it takes slow down. Once I stop the scurry, I can breathe into the present, with all it has to offer. I discover that I am exactly where I am supposed to be and there is enough time for life to unfold.


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* I took this photo in San Agustinillo, Mexico. This is Bailey (RIP) who, like so many dog friends, shows us the way to now.

A new chapter opens

Near Piazza Amerina Sicily Italy.JPG

A New Chapter Opens

The air is filled with the richness of possibility
A special kind of freedom stretches before you

May you be filled with hope about the experiences ahead
May you embrace the opportunities that walk into your path
May you move with grace as you dance with the unfamiliar
May you step confidently as you engage in new adventures
May you find wisdom in even the most unexpected places

Be awake and curious, open and unattached
Listen to your heart as it whispers your dreams

Know that you are enough, just as you are
Trust everything to unfold beautifully

Step boldly into a future that is uniquely yours
Intentionally create the memories which will write the story of your life


I wrote this poem for my husband when he retired in January. Today the words seemed so fitting when I replaced the “you”‘s with “I”‘s and “me”‘s. While I wrote these words for a special occasion, it seems like a little prayer that can be used any day – because we always have a chance to start anew – this moment, this day, this week, this month, this year – not just this milestone, to be intentional about what we want to create and about the choices we make and actions we take.


* I took this photo in Sicily, somewhere on our drive around Piazza Armerina. I picked it because it’s one of Jim’s favorite landscape shots from the trip.