Tuesday, December 29, 2015

You're like the lights left on

"You built your life just right before I came along and I've been pleased to find you left a space for me. You give me the same feeling I get when driving home for the holidays - 900 miles- and I pull up to the driveway and see the lights left on for me.

You're like the lights left on.

Agloe, New York, ifyoufinthisemail.com 

The roots are riotous

"And don't think the garden loses its ecstasy in winter. It's quiet, but the roots are down there riotous."


Sunday, December 27, 2015

Artist Block

“One reason that people have artist’s block is that they do not respect the law of dormancy in nature. Trees don’t produce fruit all year long, constantly. They have a point where they go dormant. And when you are in a dormant period creatively, if you can arrange your life to do the technical tasks that don’t take creativity, you are essentially preparing for the spring when it will all blossom again.”

Marshall Vandruff, Said during a webinar done on Visualarium to advertise his upcoming online course on animal anatomy (source links to webinar)  (via pale-afternoon)

Thursday, December 10, 2015


"In my first class last week, the teacher discussed the concept of santosha, which means contentment, or harmony.
As he went deeper into the term, he explained that santosha involves using the word “and” rather than “but” to describe our circumstances."
-Jess Lively here

Monday, December 7, 2015


"I'm drowning, and you're standing three feet away from me screaming 'learn how to swim.'"

-Atlanta Georgia, ifyoufindthisemail.com

Monday, November 23, 2015

Gratitude Does Not Limit

"Gratitude does not limit. The real treasures of life come to the grateful, for they know that wealth is not the goal of life, that fame has little substance, and that the inner life of each and every person is the all-important facet of living." 

-Mae Carden

Friday, November 13, 2015

And you just know

"That's how you know it's time to move...you can feel the energy of your life pull you in another direction."

-Oprah (again).

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Common Enemy #1

"Common enemy intimacy is counterfeit connection."

Brene Brown


"Trust is choosing to make something important to you, vulnerable to the actions of someone else."

"Distrust is what I have shared with you that is important to me, is not safe with you."

-Charles Feltman

Anatomy of Trust

It is braving.

Non judgement


"We can't ask people to give us something we do not believe we're worthy of receiving."

Brene Brown, here

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

The Whole Picture

"You do not have to see the whole picture before you know it is beautiful…you do not have to understand it all to move forward in faith…..you do not have to know the ending in order to begin.” 

M.H. Clark

The Rumble

"Act II: The middle space. The part of the story where the  main character is lost and struggling. S/he tries to find the way forward by taking every path except the ones that require vulnerability. The struggle continues until s/he finally realizes that the only way home is through uncertainty and total vulnerability. Into the dark. I hate Act II. I love Act II. The middles is messy. But it's where the magic happens. We live in the rumble."

-Brene Brown, Rising Strong

Thursday, November 5, 2015

It's about the ride

“Anyone who imagines that bliss is normal is going to waste a lot of time running around shouting that he’s been robbed. The fact is that most putts don’t drop, most beef is tough, most children grow up to just be people, most successful marriages require a high degree of mutual toleration, most jobs are more often dull than otherwise. Life is like an old time rail journey…delays…sidetracks, smoke, dust, cinders and jolts, interspersed only occasionally by beautiful vistas and thrilling burst of speed. The trick is to thank the Lord for letting you have the ride.”
-Jenkin Lloyd Jones via Pres Hinckley

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Gladdest Moment

"The gladdest moment in human life, me thinks, is a departure into unknown lands."

-Sir Richard Burton

What is a Pilgrim

"My heart is on fire this morning as I study what it means to be a pilgrim, not a wanderer or a tourist, in this world. Pilgrims spend their lives going somewhere-- getting closer to God. I used to think every journey required a backpack. Turns out, you don't need a plane ticket to change every little way you've ever found God, you simply need the will and the hunger. You could actually learn to eat, pray, and love right where you are. You could figure out how to live in the skins of "wild faith" from your own 1-bedroom apartment. As Eugene Peterson writes about repentance, I realize I need to know the word more because every definition ever handed to me has staled from sitting out too long-- "repentance is a decision. It is deciding you've been wrong in supposing that you could manage your own life and be your own god." Repentance is a decision to stop death-gripping the dead in your life and become a pilgrim to a path of peace. You reject one path-- the one you've settled to travel on-- and accept another one. You say "no" to a life that used to suffice. You see the split in the road, the fork, and you take the path that makes you nauseous. William Faulkner said (in a different set of words than this): You don't build a monument for a life that used to fit, you simply track the footsteps away from your past-- more and more gathered proof that you actually moved. Lord, teach me to move. Teach me to move."

-Hannah Brencher

Pleasure in the pathless woods

"There is a pleasure in the pathless woods,
There is rapture
in the lonely shore,
There is society,
where none intrudes,
By the deep sea,
 and Music in its roar:
I love not man the less,
But nature more.
-George Gordon Byron

Enter the Fire

"You can
die for it-
an idea,
or the world. People
have done so,
their small bodies be bound
to the stake,
an unforgettable
fury of light. But
this morning,
climbing the familiar hills
in the familiar
fabric of down, I thought
of China,
and India
and Europe, and I thought
how the sun
for everyone just
so joyfully
as it rises
under the lashes
of my own eyes, and I thought
I am so many!
What is the name
of the deep breath I would take
over and over
for all of us? Call it
whatever you want, it is
happiness, it is another one
of the ways to enter
-Mary Oliver

The Single Story

"The single story creates stereotypes, and the problem with stereotypes is not that they are untrue, but that they are incomplete. They make one story become the only story."

-Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, here

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Show what you are

"Every good painter paints what he [she] is."

-Jackson Painter

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Disruption is...

"Disruption by definition involves moving sideways, back, or down, in order to move forward."

-Whitney Johnson,  Disrupt Yourself

The / A Path

"There are times when ... the only way to get from A to C, is by way of B. "

-Jeffrey R. Holland

Thursday, October 8, 2015

The Forgotten Dialect of the Heart

The Forgotten Dialect of the Heart
Jack Gilbert

How astonishing it is that language can almost mean,
and frightening that it does not quite. Love, we say,
God, we say, Rome and Michiko, we write, and the words
get it all wrong. We say bread and it means according
to which nation. French has no word for home,
and we have no word for strict pleasure. A people
in northern India is dying out because their ancient
tongue has no words for endearment. I dream of lost
vocabularies that might express some of what
we no longer can. Maybe the Etruscan texts would
finally explain why the couples on their tombs
are smiling. And maybe not. When the thousands
of mysterious Sumerian tablets were translated,
they seemed to be business records. But what if they
are poems or psalms? My joy is the same as twelve
Ethiopian goats standing silent in the morning light.
O Lord, thou art slabs of salt and ingots of copper,
as grand as ripe barley lithe under the wind's labor.
Her breasts are six white oxen loaded with bolts
of long-fibered Egyptian cotton. My love is a hundred
pitchers of honey. Shiploads of thuya are what
my body wants to say to your body. Giraffes are this
desire in the dark. Perhaps the spiral Minoan script
is not language but a map. What we feel most has
no name but amber, archers, cinnamon, horses, and birds.

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Mercy and Grace

“The difference between mercy and grace? Mercy gave the prodigal son a second chance. Grace gave him a feast.”

- Max Lucado

Emotional Maturity

“Emotional maturity is a measure of the extent to which individuals are able to follow their own values and self-directed life course within their particular social context, while being emotionally present with others, rather than living reactively by the cues of those close to them.”

Monica McGoldrick, The Genogram Jouney

Money Hours

“Either you’re happy with very little, free of all that extra luggage, because you have happiness inside, or you don’t get anywhere! 
I am not advocating poverty. I am advocating sobriety. But since we have invented a consumer society, the economy must constantly grow. If it fails to increase, it’s a tragedy. We have invented a mountain of superfluous needs. Shopping for new, discarding the old… That’s a waste of our lives!. When I buy something, when you buy something, you’re not paying money for it. You’re paying with the hours of life you had to spend earning that money. The difference is that life is one thing money can’t buy. Life only gets shorter. And it is pitiful to waste one’s life and freedom that way.”

José Mujica

It will be

“If it is right, it happens — The main thing is not to hurry. Nothing good gets away.”

John Steinbeck,”Letter to Thom Steinbeck,” 10 Nov. 1958.


“I do not fix problems. I fix my thinking. Then problems fix themselves.”

- Louise Hay

How to:

“How to stop time: kiss.
How to travel in time: read.
How to escape time: music.
How to feel time: write.
How to release time: breathe.”

Matt HaigReasons to Stay Alive


“Your name still breaks my Heart.”

Six word story 

Daughter of the Forest

“You will find the way, daughter of the forest. Through grief and pain, through many trials, through betrayal and loss, your feet will walk a straight path.”

Juliet Marillier, Daughter of the Forest 

Fake Green Grass

“Single people want relationships, settled people wonder if they’re missing out on something, traveling types miss stability, stable ones are restless, old friends want new friends, new friends miss old friends, and basically almost everyone my age has some dangling worry trailing around after them everywhere that they’re somehow not doing everything, that what they’re doing is not altogether the right thing, that they are missing out. … Do not be ashamed. The doubt is natural, and everyone you know – yes, even that person – carries it sometimes too. Allow yourself to be peaceful. Allow yourself satisfaction in what you have. If you really don’t like it, allow yourself permission to make changes.”

Lillian Schneider


“Despite what you may believe, you can disappoint people and still be good enough. You can make mistakes and still be capable and talented. You can let people down and still be worthwhile and deserving of love. Everyone has disappointed someone they care about. Everyone messes up, lets people down, and makes mistakes. Not because we’re inadequate or fundamentally inept, but because we’re imperfect and fundamentally human. Expecting anything different is setting yourself up for failure.”

Daniell Koepke

Spiritual Burdens

"Cherish your spiritual burdens because God will converse with you through them and will use you to do his work if you carry them well."

-Jeffrey R. Holland, "The Inconvenient Messiah"

Always Trees

"Trees are sanctuaries. Whoever knows how to speak to them, whoever knows how to listen to them, can learn the truth. They do not preach learning and precepts, they preach, undeterred by particulars, the ancient law of life.

When we are stricken and cannot bear our lives any longer, then a tree has something to say to us: Be still! Be still! Look at me! Life is not easy, life is not difficult. Those are childish thoughts. Let God speak within you, and your thoughts will grow silent. You are anxious because your path leads away from mother and home. But every step and every day lead you back again to the mother. Home is neither here nor there. Home is within you, or home is nowhere at all.

So the tree rustles in the evening, when we stand uneasy before our own childish thoughts: Trees have long thoughts, long-breathing and restful, just as they have longer lives than ours. They are wiser than we are, as long as we do not listen to them. But when we have learned how to listen to trees, then the brevity and the quickness and the childlike hastiness of our thoughts achieve an incomparable joy. Whoever has learned how to listen to trees no longer wants to be a tree. He wants to be nothing except what he is. That is home. That is happiness." -- Hermann Hesse 

Doubt not Faith? or Doubt and Faith?

"Doubt is but another element of faith."

-St. Augustine

Love is a vicious motivator

"Bitterness is a paralytic. Love is a much more vicious motivator."

-Sherlock Holms

Mindy Fan Club

"Insults about the way I look can't be the thing that harms me and my heart the most. It has to harm me the least. If I have a daughter, I'm going to tell her that. Far too many women are much  more hurt by being called fat or ugly than they are by being called not smart, or not a leader. If someone told me that I was stupid or that I wasn't a leader, or that I wasn't witty or quick or perceptive, I'd be devastated. If someone told me that I had a gross body, I'd say, 'well, it's bringing me a lot of happiness.' Like, I'm having a fine time of it. Having my priorities aligned like that has helped me have a happier life."

-Mindy Kaling


"Suadade. Last night I learned about this perfect Portuguese word by my most profound and articulate friend...there is not an English word that aptly translates shaded, but it so perfectly captures the emotion I have to often felt and have been feeling constantly on this trip...[it was explained as] the lovely ache of knowing that beauty fades, but is here, in your hands, right now. The dream of casting the moment in iron and holding it close forever...when the moment you are experiencing, feeling and sensing is so magical to you that you already ache for when it's over."

Puddle of Pessimism

"There is enough that doesn't go right in life, so anyone can work themselves into a puddle of pessimism and a mess of melancholy, but I know people who, even when things don't work out, focus on the wonders and miracles of life. These folks are the happiest people I know. You see, everything else in the gospel- all the should and the musts and the thou shalt- lead to love. When we love God, we want to serve Him. We want to be like Him. When we love our neighbors, we stop thinking so much about our own problems and help other to solve theirs."

President Uchtdorf, Womens Conference 2015

Fall Y'all

"That old September feeling, left over from school days, of summer passing, vacation nearly done, obligations gathering, books and football in the air...Another fall, another turned page: there was something of jubilee in that annual autumnal beginning, as if last year's mistakes had been wiped clean by summer."

-Wallace Stegner, Angel of Repose

Listen to the Silence

"The most important thing in communication is hearing what isn't said.

-Peter Drucker

Thursday, October 1, 2015

October Baby


O hushed October morning mild,
Thy leaves have ripened to the fall;
Tomorrow’s wind, if it be wild,
Should waste them all.
The crows above the forest call;
Tomorrow they may form and go.
O hushed October morning mild,
Begin the hours of this day slow.
Make the day seem to us less brief.
Hearts not averse to being beguiled,
Beguile us in the way you know.
Release one leaf at break of day;
At noon release another leaf;
One from our trees, one far away.
Retard the sun with gentle mist;
Enchant the land with amethyst.
Slow, slow!
For the grapes’ sake, if they were all,
Whose leaves already are burnt with frost,
Whose clustered fruit must else be lost—
For the grapes’ sake along the wall.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Storing September

You ask me what I did today,
I could pretend and say
“I don’t remember.”
But, no, I’ll tell you what I did today--
I stored September.
Sat in the sun and let the sun sink in,
Let all the warmth of it caress my skin.
When winter comes, my skin will still remember
The day I stored September.
And then, my eyes--
I filled them with the deepest, bluest skies
and all the traceries of wasps and butterflies.
When winter comes, my eyes will still remember
The day they stored September.
And then there was cricket song to fill my ears!
And the taste of grapes
And the deep purple of them!
And asters, like small clumps of sky. . .
You know how much I love them.
That’s what I did today
And I know why.
Just simply for the love of it,
I stored September.

-Elizabeth Rooney

Friday, September 11, 2015

Stuff and Consuming

Things carry an energy, and mostly, it’s the energy of the meaning we’ve assigned to them. If you don’t believe me, step inside a dim, cluttered space. That “yuck” feeling you get? Yeah. That.
But things get that way because our “yuck” instincts are voided out by our screaming minds that tell us they’re necessary. We collect pseudo-useful shit because the brilliant minds that craft the advertising-industrial-consumerist-half-human complex need to build a need for things where there is none.
This feeds the fear pit we develop when we’re young, when we (often subconsciously) realize that the way you look – which mostly has to do with what you have, and is therefore a representation of how much money you have, which is how money begins to equal worth – determines your social standing, and your dating pool. (This tends to only be true as kids sort into cliques and social labels, but as we all know, foundations we lay in childhood are what we build our lives on.) Those things – social standing and dating – at a core level, translate to us as inclusiveness, survival and pro-creation. We’re neurologically and physiologically hard-wired to freak out if we don’t have them.
So our desire to consume, and keep in excess, and seek in excess, is associated with this core need. The process of letting that go is learning to see and think with a grown-up mind, one that can process animal instincts in a way that a child brain cannot. This is brutal and gripping and raw and if you think those words are exaggerated you have not yet done it. Your base instincts are being dismantled, and if we know anything about those guys, it’s that they fight to keep themselves known.
But once they’ve been rationalized – talked down, sorted through, leveled out – the rest is pretty easy. Since I left the last box of clothes off at Goodwill, I’ve noticed even the smallest details of my life changing.
I spend significantly less money. I eat better. I sleep better. My relationships are flourishing in ways I never could have conceived of before. My work is easier because my space is usually feels inspiring. I’m more grounded. There’s less to do in the day. I must be routine, and clean, and mindful. There’s no other choice. I have, in some subconscious, physical way (which is always easier than trying to beat your consciousness into submission) let go of so many years of packed up attachments.

All Of My Belongings Fit In One Box: My Journey Of Radical Decluttering via thought catalog.com

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

One, and then another and another

“Yeah, some crappy things have happened. And yeah, you’ve made some bad choices, but all you have to do is make one good decision. And then another after that. Keep making good decisions and things will get better.” 

-Louis C.K. NPR interview

Monday, September 7, 2015


"A family seems exactly like an archipelago. All part of the same whole, but still separate and alone and always drifting slowly apart."

- The Decendants movie


Friday, September 4, 2015

Foreboding Joy

Brene Brown on foreboding joy and numbing ...

How many of you, when something great is happening, start dress rehearsing tragedy.  Like what is going to come take this away...

That is the best barometer to measure your capacity for vulnerability...here's why...

Joy is the most vulnerable emotion you can experience, and if you can not tolerate joy, what you do is start dress rehearsing tragedy.

People who have the most profound capacity for joy, can lean into vulnerability.  Those people who could soften into joy, when something really blissful is happening also got this feeling like whoaaaaaa...but instead of using it a warning to start practicing disaster, they used it as a reminder to start practicing gratitude.


Quotes from Brene Brown here: 

When perfectionism is driving, shame is always riding shotgun, and fear is the annoying backseat driver.

We struggle with perfectionism in areas we feel most vulnerable to shame.

All perfectionism is - is a way of thinking that says if I look perfect, work perfect, live perfect, I can avoid or minimize criticism, blame, and ridicule.

All perfectionism is is a 20 ton shield that we carry around hoping it will keep us from being hurt, but in truth it keeps us from being seen.

It depends if I've got a worthiness crutch going on...healthy striving is internally focused, perfectionism is not about what I want, but what will people think.

You can't ever do anything brave, if you're wearing the straightjacket of what will people think.

Monday, August 31, 2015

Writing is like...

"Writing...is like dropping a rose petal down the Grand Canyon and waiting for the echo."

-Don Marquis

Born Again

"He allowed himself to be swayed by his conviction that human beings are not born once and for all on the day their mothers give birth to them, but that life obliges them over and over again to give birth to themselves."

-Gabriel Garcia Marquez

Wrong Right

"Sometimes when things turn out wrong, it's because they would have turned out worse if they had gone right."

-Mark Amend

Willingness in Fear

"Fear is the biggest obstacle to our creativity. I don't believe it's possible to live a life free from fear, but courage is not the absence of fear; it's the willingness to act in the presence of fear."

-David Duchemin

Elsewhere the Sky

"Elsewhere the sky is the roof of the world; but here the earth was the floor of the sky."

-Willa Cather

A Journey is a Person

"A journey is a person in itself; no two are alike. And all plans, safeguards, policing, and coercion are fruitless. We find that after years of struggle that we do not take a trip; a trip takes us."

-John Steinbeck

Sister Life Ghost Ship Salute

"I'll never know and neither will you, of the life you don't choose. We'll only know that whatever that sister life was, it was important and beautiful and not ours. It was the ghost ship that didn't carry us. There's nothing to do but salute it from the shore."

-Cheryl Strayed

So Be Kind in the Vineyard

"We are not in a race against each other to see who is the wealthiest or the most talented or the most beautiful or even the most blessed. The race we are really in is the race against sin, and surely envy is one of the most universal of those. Furthermore, envy is a mistake that just keeps on giving...Coveting, pouting, or tearing others down does not elevate your standing, nor does demeaning someone else improve your self-image. So be kind, and be grateful that God is kind. It is a happy way to live."

-Jeffrey R. Holland, The Laborers in the Vineyard
curated by The Small Seed

Social Anxiety

"Ideal conversation is an exchange of thought, not an eloquent exhibition of wit or oratory."

-Emily Post (the one and only)

A Blessed Warm Fog

"It's not the clear-sighted who rule the world. Great achievements are accomplished in a blessed, warm fog."

-Joseph Conrad

Simple Truth

"You don't pass or fail at being a person, dear."

-Neil Gaiman

More Ocean Quotes

"Even when the ocean is at its most tumultuous, if you learn to drop down 20 or 30 feet under the water, there's just gentle calmness, undulation, and stillness. And it's always present."

-Jon Kabat-Zinn

A man shared this quote, so ya....

"To call woman the weaker sex is a libel; it is man's injustice to woman. If by strength is meant brute strength, then, indeed, is woman less brute than man. If by strength is meant moral power, then woman is immeasurable man's superior. Has she not greater intuition, is she not more self-sacrificing, has she not greater powers of endurance, has she not greater courage? Without her, man could not be. If nonviolence is the law of our being, the future is with woman. Who can make a more effective appeal to the heart than woman?"

-Mahatma Gandi

Time and Photographs

"I have a tenuous relationship with time. I’m always looking to be lost in it, to fight it, to move freely in it. To push and pull. Save it. Erase it. Who knows what’s equitable to ask of time. It never answers my letters. It just goes on. And so I travel looking for lost bits, hoping to know what it’s like to be more than a temporal being...
I, as most of us do now, thoughtlessly use my camera to tuck the detritus of my days into my pockets. I also do photography, but I consider those two different things. The former I find pointless and rather wish I didn’t do it. A photo isn’t a memory any more than the scraps of paper and mundane talismans I keep in a little drawer in my dresser are. At best they are short hand notes, jotted down and crumpled in a pocket, maybe looked at later, maybe not.
Something far more inscrutable determines that which we remember and that which we do not. Even a photograph can become meaningless over time. Where was that? Who are those people? Why some things bob happily on the surface of our memories, form bright electric paths that spark blue through our brains, and why others sink down into the silt, forgotten, a neurological black out, I’ll never know.
These photos are artifacts I was able to create by traveling, but they are not my memories. My memories are simple. Heart sickness for my love. Overwhelming wonder at the fact that things really can be as beautiful as you always imagined. Trying to suspend reality, trying to make believe that mystical creatures and spirits inhabited the forest. Wanting someone else’s eyes to see all that I was seeing. Never wanting to leave. All I dream of is being back ..., but next time with my husband. If he was there with me, it may as well be home. If you ever can, do go.

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Sonnet 34

You are the daughter of the sea, oregano's first cousin.
Swimmer, your body is pure as the water;
cook, your blood is quick as the soil.
Everything you do is full of flowers, rich with the earth.

Your eyes go out toward the , and the waves rise;
your hands go out to the earth and the seeds swell;
you know the deep essence of water and the earth,
conjoined in you like a formula for clay.

Naiad: cut your body into turquoise pieces,
they will bloom resurrected in the kitchen.
This is how you become everything that lives.

And so at last, you sleep, in the circle of my arms
that push back the shadows so that you can rest--
vegetables, seaweed, herbs: the foam of your dreams 

Sunday, August 9, 2015


"The days you are most uncomfortable are the days you learn the most about yourself."

-Mary L. Bean


"The aim of every artist is to arrest motion, which is life, by artificial means and hold it fixed so that a hundred years later, when a strangers looks at it, it moves again."


The Others

"To the fatherless, to the wounded by fathers, to those haunted by whatever father was or is: there are other origins. The night sky, stitched as it is with stars carries pieces of us all. And all the oceans. And each of our hands, making meaning from nothing."

-Lidia Yuknavitch

Slave to your Prejudices

"Equality is more than a matter of mathematics and geometry. Equality is a philosophical and psychological matter...And I tell you, we can't save the should of America without in the the process saving our white brothers. And they aren't free. When you enslave an individual, you enslave yourself. I mean all white brothers are slaves to that fear - salves to their prejudices."

-Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. at Brown Chapel Selma, AL

Apple Carts

"Why not upset the apple cart? If you don't, the apples will rot anyway."

-Frank A. Clark

The Big Questions

"Do those things that incline you toward the big questions, and avoid the things that would reduce you and make you trivial."

-George Saunders


"Sometimes I worry that I'll slide back into the mindless rotisserie of work and projects that guided me in my old house...that I'll grow numb to the way nature can leave me awestruck. I worry that I'll fall asleep at the switch, only to wake up years later and find that I can't remember what I did last week or the month before that, nor do I recognize the old lady staring back at me in the mirror."

-Dee Williams


"When experiencing awe, you, may not, egocentrically speaking, feel like you are at the centre of the world anymore. By shifting attention toward larger entities and diminishing the emphasis on the individual self, we reasoned that awe would trigger tendencies to engage in pro-social behaviors that may be costly for you but that benefit and help others feel smaller and less self-important."

"...awe expands people's perception of time, alters decision-making, and enhances well-being."

-Paul Piff, PhD

Salt Lines

"All of us have in our veins the exact same percentage of salt in our blood that exists in the ocean, and, therefore, we have salt in our blood, in our sweat, in our tears. We are tied to the ocean. And when we go back to the sea- whether it is to sail or to watch it - we are going back from whence we came."



“...the only thing that makes the Church endurable is that it is somehow the body of Christ and that on this we are fed. It seems to be a fact that you have to suffer as much from the Church as for it but if you believe in the divinity of Christ, you have to cherish the world at the same time that you struggle to endure it. ” 
― Flannery O'ConnorThe Habit of Being: Letters of Flannery O'Connor

“Faith comes and goes. It rises and falls like the tides of an invisible ocean. If it is presumptuous to think that faith will stay with you forever, it is just as presumptuous to think that unbelief will.” 
― Flannery O'ConnorThe Habit of Being: Letters of Flannery O'Connor

Monday, August 3, 2015

The Game is Worthwhile

"The main interest in life and work is to become someone else that you were not in the beginning. If you knew when you began a book what you would say at the end, do you think that you would have the courage to write it? What is true for writing and for a love relationship is true also for life. The game is worthwhile insofar as we don't know what will be the end."

-Michel Foucault

Islands and Seas

"We're all islands shouting lies to each other across seas of misunderstanding."

-Rudyard Kipling

Nature Prayer

"I don't know exactly what a prayer is.
I do know how to pay attention, how to fall down into the grass, how to kneel down in the grass,
how to be idle and blessed, how to stroll through the fields,
which is what I have been doing all day.
Tell me, what else should I have done?

-Mary Oliver


"There is an anesthetic of familiarity, a sedative of ordinariness which dulls the senses and hides the wonder of existence. For those of us not gifted in poetry, it is at least worth while from time to time making an effort to shake off the anesthetic. what is the best way of countering the sluggish habituation brought about by our gradual crawl from babyhood? We can't actually fly to another planet. But we can recapture that sense of having just tumbled out to life on a new world by looking at our own world in unfamiliar ways."

- Richard Dawkins

Potent Prayer

"Prayer is not an old woman's idle amusement. Properly understood and applied, it is the most potent instrument of action."

-Mahatma Gandhi

Rapt in Awe

"The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and all science. He to whom this emotion is a stranger, who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead: his eyes are closed." -

 Albert Einstein

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

A way to live

“Happy. Just in my swim shorts, barefooted, wild-haired, in the red fire dark, singing, swigging wine, spitting, jumping, running - that’s the way to live.”

Jack Kerouac, The Dharma Bums 

Yes yes yes

“The bigger the issue, the smaller you write. Remember that. You don’t write about the horrors of war. No. You write about a kid’s burnt socks lying on the road. You pick the smallest manageable part of the big thing, and you work off the resonance.”

— Richard Price


"You get a strange feeling when you’re about to leave a place. Like you’ll not only miss the people you love but you’ll miss the person you are now at this time and this place, because you’ll never be this way ever again.”

Azar Nafisi, Reading Lolita in Tehran   

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Road Trips

"As we crossed the Utah-Colorado border, I saw God in the sky in the form of huge gold sunburning clouds above the desert that seemed to point a finger at me and say, 'Pass here and go on, you're on the road to heaven.'" 

--Jack Kerouac, On the Road 

Monday, June 29, 2015


"I strongly suspect that if we saw all the difference even the tiniest of our prayers make, and all the people those little prayers were destined to affect, and all the consequences of those prayers down through the centuries, we would be so paralyzed with awe at the power of prayer that we would be unable to get up off our knees for the rest of our lives."

-Peter Kreeft

Impostor Syndrome

"Sometimes, your insecurities and your inexperience may lead you, too, to embrace other people's expectations, standards or values. But you can harness that inexperience to carve out your own path, one that is free of the burden of knowing how things are supposed to be, a path that is defined by its own particular set of reasons."

-Natalie Portman, Harvard's 2015 Commencement


"Surely there is grandeur in knowing that in the realm of thought, at least, you are without a chain; that you have the right to explore all heights and depth; that there are no walls nor fences, nor prohibited places, nor sacred corners in all the vast expanse of thought."

-Robert Green Ingersoll

Sunday, June 21, 2015


"Close friends are truly life's treasures. Sometimes they know us better than we know ourselves. With gentle honesty, they are there to guide and support us, to share our laughter and our tears. Their presence reminds us that we are never really alone. " 

- Vincent Van Gogh 

Monday, May 4, 2015

The Still Point

At the still point of the turning world. Neither flesh nor fleshless;
Neither from nor towards; at the still point, there the dance is,
But neither arrest nor movement. And do not call it fixity,
Where past and future are gathered.
Neither movement from nor towards, Neither ascent nor decline.
Except for the point, the still point,
There would be no dance, and there is only the dance.

 - T. S. Eliot, "Burnt Norton," in Four Quartets,15-16.

My Ocean

"Life is like the ocean. It can be calm or still, and rough and rigid, but in the end it is always beautiful."

 -Who said this?

Tuesday, April 21, 2015


"...We may encounter many defeats, but we must not be defeated. That sounds goody two-shoes, I know, but I believe that a diamond is the result of extreme pressure and time. Less time is crystal. Less than that is coal. Less than that is fossilized leaves. Less than that is just plain dirt. In all my work, in the movies I write, the lyrics, the poetry, the prose, the essays, I am saying that we may encounter many defeats- maybe it's imperative that we encounter the defeats- but we are much stronger than we appear to be and maybe much better than we allow ourselves to be."

-Maya Angelou


"My barn having burned down
I can now see the moon."

-Mizuta Masahide

Sunday, April 19, 2015


“Beware; for I am fearless, and therefore powerful.”

Mary Shelley, Frankenstein 

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Remember and Redemption

"Redemption comes when you remember who you are."

-in reference to almost every fairy tale originally told/written

-Maria Tatar


"And that, I believe, is what true redemption is, Amir jan, when guilt leads to good."

-Khaled Hosseini, The Kite Runner ch. 23

Monday, April 13, 2015


"Nothing is more revealing than movement."

- Martha Graham

Friday, April 10, 2015

Something great

“Something great is about to happen to me: I’m about to love somebody very much.””

Jack Kerouac, from Windblown 

That's when you jump

“When it feels scary to jump, that’s exactly when you jump. Otherwise you end up staying the same place your whole life. And that I can’t do.”

A Most Violent Year, J.C. Chandor 

Wild things

“I never saw a wild thing 
sorry for itself.”

D.H. Lawrence, “Self-Pity”  

Lilacs stirring dull roots

“April is the cruelest month, breeding
lilacs out of the dead land, mixing
memory and desire, stirring
dull roots with spring rain.”

T.S. Eliot, The Wasteland  

For a growing soul

“Cheers for spring; for life; for a growing soul.”

Sylvia Plath - from The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath 

Sound of the hello

“The search for your soulmate ends with the sound of a hello, and a familiar feeling like you’ve said hello once before.”

soulmates part 1 // Jenn Satsune 

Scary Close

“I no longer believe love works like a fairy tale but like farming. Most of it is just getting up early and tilling the soil and then praying for rain. But if we do the work, we might just wake up one day to find an endless field of crops rolling into the horizon. In my opinion, that’s even better than a miracle.”

Don Miller, Scary Close


“Some periods of our growth are so confusing that we don’t even recognize that growth is happening. We may feel hostile or angry or weepy and hysterical, or we may feel depressed. It would never occur to us, unless we stumbled on a book or a person who explained to us, that we were in fact in the process of change, of actually becoming larger, spiritually, than we were before. Whenever we grow, we tend to feel it, as a young seed must feel the weight and inertia of the earth as it seeks to break out of its shell on its way to becoming a plant. Often the feeling is anything but pleasant. But what is most unpleasant is the not knowing what is happening. Those long periods when something inside ourselves seems to be waiting, holding its breath, unsure about what the next step should be, eventually become the periods we wait for, for it is in those periods that we realize that we are being prepared for the next phase of our life and that, in all probability, a new level of the personality is about to be revealed.”

Alice Walker: living by the word

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Beauty must be truth

"What the imagination seizes as beauty must be truth."

-John Keats

Always Process

"...my satisfaction in creative work has nothing to do with what I make and everything to do with the process of making. Whether I leave with a piece of garbage or something I'm really proud of, I love to work..."

-Sam Beam of Iron & Wine


"Your level of success will seldom exceed your level of personal development because success is something you attract by the person you become."

-Jim Rohn
referred to here

Monday, April 6, 2015

Just take the picture and be present

"Photography takes an instant out of time, altering life by holding it still."

-Dorothea Lange

Building the universe

"On a summer morning I sat down on a hillside to think about God - - a worthy pastime. Near me, I saw a single cricket; it was moving the grains of the hillside this way and that way. How great was its energy, how humble its effort. Let us hope it will always be like this, each of us going on in our inexplicable ways building the universe."

-Mary Oliver

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Like a river

a river
flows so
surely to
the sea darling
so it goes some
things are
meant to


The world is heavy, but your bones

the world is heavy
but your bones
(just a cubic inch)
can hold 19,000 lbs

once for once
they are stronger
than steel

atom for atom
you are more precious
than diamond

and stars have died
so that you may live

you need to remember
these things when you
say that you are weak
and worthless


Plan B

"Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the mouth."

-Mike Tyson

Loved properly

"You were the fist thing I ever loved properly and without hesitation."

-Amy Turn Sharp

Greatest love story

"Easter is one of the greatest love stories ever told."

Saturday, April 4, 2015

The horizon leans forward

"The horizon leans forward, offering you space to place new steps of change."

-Maya Angelou

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

April is for poets

"The writing of a poem is like a child throwing stones into a mine shaft.

You compose first, then you listen for the reverberation."

-James Fenton

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Not a step backward

"Going back to a simpler life is not a step backward."

-Yvon Chouinard

Bad decisions can be correct

"Things usually make sense in time, and even bad decisions have their own kind of correctness."

-Miranda July


"I watched the dinner plates from IKEA break and shatter into a million, tiny pieces on the basement floor. It was like a fireworks show made out of porcelain.

I remember wanting to scream up at God in that moment 'I don't want memories. I just want something that will always, constantly be mine. Give me something, anything, I'll always be able to hold.'

I'm terribly unoriginal in that sense. I am just one in a sea of millions of people who think the word 'mine' is the most terrifying and intoxicating word in the whole English language."

-Hanna Brencher

To all other roads

"No single decision you ever made has led in a straight line to where you find yourself now. You peeked down some roads and took a few steps before turning back. You followed some roads that came to a dead end and others that got lost at too many intersections. Ultimately, all roads are connected to all other roads."

-Deepak Chopra

Monday, March 30, 2015

Both right now

i want to stay.
i want to leave.
i am three oceans away from my soul.”

nayyirah waheed, from “lost” 

Little big

“The little things? The little moments? — They aren’t little.”

John Zabat-Zinn  

Saturday, March 28, 2015


No matter

how temporarily
two souls are interwoven,
they always leave a mark.

But not every mark is a bruise.

Loving him was an honor,
never a burden."

Noor Shirazie (via aestheticintrovert)

Out of words

“Today I wrote you out of my life. It didn’t end with good bye or one final tear, I just sort of ran out of words. I could no longer fill lines with words describing my broken heart. I could not enunciate the ache I felt in my heart that plagued me each night I went to bed without a call from you and each morning I woke up to no text. My prolonged dramatic poems about how much you meant to me no longer flowed from my heart like a beautiful but tragic symphony. And when I made the effort to picture your smile I saw myself happy without you. And when I went to write your name next to mine it didn’t fit. You know how you can repeat a word so many times that it sounds off so you try to spell it but you’re not sure if you’re spelling it correctly and then suddenly it looks like the wrong word all together? I wasn’t sure. I wasn’t sure if your middle name had one R or two, but I was sure that in my mouth your name tasted bitter and so I spit it out one last time. Today I wrote you out of my life. It didn’t end with a dramatic goodbye or one final tear, I guess I sort of just ran out of words.”

teedaawg (via wnq-writers)

Undone Seeds

“For a seed to achieve its greatest expression, it must come completely undone. The shell cracks, its insides come out and everything changes. To someone who doesn't understand growth, it would look like complete destruction.”

― Cynthia Occelli

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Science of Change

"In order for change to happen, something has to move."

-Albert Einstein

Wednesday, March 25, 2015


"If there's a place in hell for women who don't support other women, there's a place in heaven for women who do."

-Gloria Steinem

Puff Up

"You can boast about anything if it's all you have. maybe the less you have, the more you are required to boast."

-Steinbeck; East of Eden

Whoa-Man, Woman

"A huge part of being a feminist is giving other women the freedom to make choices you might not necessarily make yourself."

-Lena Dunham

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

But really though

“I am running away but I prefer to call it a strategic retreat.”

Tennessee WilliamsThe Selected Letters: 1920-1945 

In better light

"In better light, everything changes."


Monday, March 23, 2015

Mind is buttoned up

when my mind gets buttoned up
like an old overcoat
hanging in the back of my closet
i dust off the jacket
and hang it out to dry
hoping for a rainy day
to wash my sense clean



"Stop wearing your wishbone where your backbone ought to be."

-Elizabeth Gilbert

The violet sheds

"Forgiveness is the fragrance that the violet sheds on the heel that has crushed it."

-Mark Twain

Sunday, March 22, 2015


This is the thing: When you hit 28 or 30, everything begins to divide. You can see very clearly two kinds of people. On one side, people who have used their 20s to learn and grow, to find … themselves and their dreams, people who know what works and what doesn’t, who have pushed through to become real live adults. Then there’s the other kind, who are hanging onto college, or high school even, with all their might. They’ve stayed in jobs they hate, because they’re too scared to get another one. They’ve stayed with men or women who are good but not great, because they don’t want to be lonely. … they mean to develop intimate friendships, they mean to stop drinking like life is one big frat party. But they don’t do those things, so they live in an extended adolescence, no closer to adulthood than when they graduated.

Don’t be like that. Don’t get stuck. Move, travel, take a class, take a risk. There is a season for wildness and a season for settledness, and this is neither. This season is about becoming. Don’t lose yourself at happy hour, but don’t lose yourself on the corporate ladder either. Stop every once in a while and go out to coffee or climb in bed with your journal.

Ask yourself some good questions like: “Am I proud of the life I’m living? What have I tried this month? … Do the people I’m spending time with give me life, or make me feel small? Is there any brokenness in my life that’s keeping me from moving forward?”

Now is your time. Walk closely with people you love, and with people who believe … life is a grand adventure. Don’t get stuck in the past, and don’t try to fast-forward yourself into a future you haven’t yet earned. Give today all the love and intensity and courage you can, and keep traveling honestly along life’s path.

Relevant magazine

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Not everything is

“Not everything is supposed to become something beautiful and long-lasting. Sometimes people come into your life to show you what is right and what is wrong, to show you who you can be, to teach you to love yourself, to make you feel better for a little while, or to just be someone to walk with at night and spill your life to. Not everyone is going to stay forever, and we still have to keep on going and thank them for what they’ve given us.”

Emery Allen 

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Digital Pollution

"Too many people are hiding in dark rooms flipping through too many words on big screens.  There's a reason why I avoid boardrooms.  I'd rather spend time 'in the field,' where eye contact, genuine conviction, and trust worthiness are in full evidence."

-Sir Richard Branson

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

The love you chase

" I have heard the sentiment many times over, I have seen it dissect beautiful moments and sensationalize less than beautiful relationships. Stop the “if onlys” and the “but maybes.” Trust me when I say that those do not exist within the boundaries of the love you want. They only exist within the reality of the love you chase."

-Bianca Sparacino

On winter

"I prefer winter and fall, when you feel the bone structure of landscape- the loneliness of it, the dead feeling of winter. Something waits beneath it, the whole story doesn't show."

-Andrew Wyeth

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Live inside that hope

"The very least you can do in your life is figure out what you hope for. And the most you can do is live inside that hope. Not admire it from a distance but live right in it, under its roof."

-Barbara Kingsolver

March is a Lion

"It was one of those MARCH DAYS when the sun shines hot and the wind blows cold. When it is summer in the light and winter in the shade.

-Charles Dickens

Monday, March 2, 2015


"Every dreamer knows that it is entirely possible to be homesick for a place you've never been to, perhaps more homesick thank for familiar ground."

-Judith Thurman