Lucky ? NO

I hate when people say “ you’re so lucky”
No , I strived my entire life to create the kind of life my soul longed for .
I suffered through the crap that Life throws at you like the rest of us . But I refused to let it hold me back from pursuing a life of peace, joy, and happiness. I refused to use my setbacks and my hardships as an excuse to be less than I truly wanted to be.
I refused to give up , give in , or give away my power over my own life to any thing , or any one .
Even now I struggle every day with the same things most of us do . But I see my life through a lense of positivity. My life is not perfect . I have health issues . So does my spouse . I worry about a world that can turn on a dime and the uncertainty of our lives and future just like everyone else . I’ve suffered great loss, failure, rejection and hardship in my lifetime . I wasn’t born with a silver spoon in my mouth, and didn’t have the most ideal childhood. I made many mistakes as a young adult and decisions that led to painful consequences. But when you see me counting my blessings , and expressing gratitude for all the beauty in my life that I either created out of a choice and a determination , or that I chose to see through a positive lense even In the midst of my life’s imperfections , please don’t say I’m lucky . Luck has nothing to do with it . But rather use what I project out into the world as an inspiration to turn your own life into what you want it to be. And find your personal JOY because the opportunities are there for all of us.

Monday Musings

Life is full of milestones. I have reached one recently in my journey that only enabled me to glimpse a certain level contentment, in temporary spurts in the past.

When I look back at all of my lifelong lessons , I see a recurring theme that always involves needing to learn what I don’t HAVE TO do. I don’t have to respond, I don’t need to explain, I don’t need to justify, I don’t need an excuse, I don’t have to engage, I don’t have to agree, I don’t have to do as others do.

And this one was the hardest of all to let go of. I don’t have to be understood !!

It’s to be OK to just be uniquely me. To live, love, and carry on in a way that brings me personal peace and contentment.

At this stage of my life I am not interested in telling others how they should live, think, feel or believe. I am also not interested in being told the same.

I am only interested in spending these years surrounding myself with the simple pleasures, and people that make me feel Happy and at peace with myself and my creator. What others do is not my concern.

I am 68 years old. I am not going to change the world to make it a better place at this stage of my life.

But I can leave my mark on this world in a positive way, one smile at a time, one hug, one act of kindness, one song, one poem, one word of encouragement.

And I am OK, being uniquely and magically me.

BY:JLE February 27, 2023


So my new obsession is the concept of “Hygge”, a Danish word to describing the coziness and the comfort of simple things .
(Hygge (/ˈh(j)uːɡə/, H(Y)OO-guh; Danish: [ˈhykə]; Norwegian: [ˈhŷɡːə]) is a word in Danish and Norwegian that describes a mood of coziness and “comfortable conviviality” with feelings of wellness and contentment.)

One translation actually described this as the complete absence of anything annoying . This made me laugh of course. Quite a lofty goal 😂😂😂
But one can certainly try.

I researched how to say this in other languages , particularly those of my personal heritage .
Dutch- Gezelligheid
Scottish- còsagach
Italian -I couldn’t find an Italian word that translates well to this Nordic term but I guess these will do as substitutes .

I’m so immersed I’m reading books on the topic .
My dear husband thinks I’m weird but thankfully he loves me anyway .

By:JLE Feb 2023

Happy Birthday to my second born daughter, Danielle, who has taken everything this life has thrown at her, gathered it up into one big ball, and made good use of every single bit of it. She has turned hardship into gratitude, Fear into courage, and grief into strength. In her young life she has grown in the knowledge that though life does not always go as planned, detours and Plan B’s can still be used to forge your way through your life’s journey. This woman OWNS her journey. A successful life is not about what happens to us, but how we respond to it. Nothing makes my heart smile more than to see that the women I brought into this world, who go on after me, Both My daughters and my Granddaughter, possess attributes in their young lives that it took me 2/3 of a lifetime to learn. Happy Birthday Danielle. I am proud and blessed to call you my daughter. May all your dreams come true in the end.

By: JLE August 2019


Morning thoughts on Friendships :

I am the kind of person that loves to “start things” “get the ball rolling” pull the train up and invite folks to “get on board” heck I’ll even drive the train once it’s rolling along . I am compelled to do this because I am a social person . And though this was not me in my younger years (before I really discovered my true
Self ) at some point in my life ( probably around 50 ish ) I realized that the best way to make friends , maintain friendships, and have an active social lifestyle was to stop waiting and wishing but doing .
Once I realized I could pretty much alter the course of my social life with a little effort , the power to create this social life I longed for , was really in my own hands the whole time .
I love my friends of all levels of friendship . Near and far , those I see almost daily to those I only see every few years . I love that they are diverse . All personality types from all different backgrounds . Yes of course there are those I consider kindred spirits , those who know what you are thinking before you say it etc . But Thats more about relatability and common ground than it is closeness . Because I do believe I can get close to someone who is very different than me . In fact some of my best friends throughout life were women who were my polar opposites in many ways . Heck I married a polar opposite to me so I know this to be true . I find people whose culture, background, personality are different than mine, incredibly interesting as I’m always about learning something new .
How boring human relations would be if we were all exactly alike . Yet how glorious it it is have one or two of those friends who get you , I mean really really get you . So in Janet’s famous words “ it’s about the balance “
Which brings me to my one struggle with friendships . Though I am an initiator, and thoroughly enjoy that role, I am not one that “needs to” or even necessarily enjoys being in control . I really don’t like being the Boss . I don’t like being the sole decision maker . In a perfect social world for me , I would start things, get people “on board” and then keeping things rolling would be a group effort . I’m often told how appreciated I am for being the doer in social circles . And though those kind verbal expressions are appreciated , what really makes me feel that none of my efforts are ever in vain is when someone else offers to drive the train for a while . Or someone invites me to take an unscheduled ride . It’s a strange phenomenon that people with my personality type are most often the inviter and the initiator, and rarely the invited one . The feeling that after all your efforts , if you stopped driving the train it would just come to screeching halt is not a good one .
With that said I also have a healthy understanding of the concept that not all people are alike when it comes to how they navigate the relationships in their lives . And if I am truly committed , as I say I am, to loving everyone, just the way they are , then the easy and the challenging parts of my friendships are just the way it is . People are complex . We must learn to love one another through our differences .
All I can really ask for is to be heard . I need to be heard and everyone deserves to be heard . And to be understood is even better .
This is one of the reasons I write . Thank you to all my beautiful friends that hear and understand me ❤️

Healthy Boundaries

I fill my space with positive energy and I maintain those boundaries to my space . The Negative energy of others cannot penetrate the walls of my Space. But there are doors through which I can chose to cross over to love, empathize and help others who dwell in a place of unhappiness and discontentment . The doors are only accessible to me.


Morning Thoughts

August 13, 9:39 AM, 2022

As I get older and contemplate the final seasons of my life , and what Will keep me content til the end, it really boils down to just a few simple things .

A swing to swing on, on nice days

A cozy fire to snuggle by in winter

A beloved pet in my lap

A view of nature to watch the seasons come and go

Music, music, endless music

And to be on good terms with all the people I have ever loved. ❤️


Just Say It

There are some memories that you are not certain why you’ve retained them. on the surface they seem so insignificant . I was about 15 and I was talking to a new boy that had moved across the street from me. He was my age and I was standing outside his front door a. I am not sure what we were talking about , we were just getting to know each other.  instead of coming outside to talk to me he stood in his doorway with the inside door open and a storm door between us. The whole time he would push the door open with his foot and then let it slam back in his face and he would flinch each time it came back at him . It was annoying and made him look silly. He managed to carry on a conversation with me while he did this but I remember realizing  at the time he wanted to be there but , but he was feeling awkward I guess,  being the new kid on the block and having this pretty girl from across the street talking the time to take an interest in him. Thus the silly gesture with the door. Though I wasn’t always confident at this age  I was courageous  so I remember pulling off a confident vibe in this moment. But I kept the thought “please stop that” to myself. 

As I contemplate this moment over 50 years later, from perspective of the woman I am now , I want to go back in the young girls head and tell her to go ahead and come right out with what she is thinking .  I’d tell her to say  to him “ what you are doing right now is stupid ” . Maybe I would say say , if I’m making you uncomfortable I’ll go. ,Then walk away. Boy would that have altered the course of that relationship. I have countless memories of moments like this is my life , where I think, why didn’t I just say what I was really thinking . Learning how to use your voice and say what you think took a lifetime for me but I’m glad I get to be the me that I am now . Of course it’s important to have somewhat of a filter from your brain to your lips , I know that . But having learned that balance , I still don’t think the current me, would have applied it all those years ago in that moment. 

Wind Chimes

After I am gone, please hang Wind Chimes in my memory so that I may sing to you in the evening breeze.


Going back in time

When people ask, if I could, would I go back to an earlier time in my life, or even childhood . My first reaction is usually no. Because I didn’t have the happiest childhood , and many earlier periods of my adult life were difficult . Going back to a physically healthier me not withstanding, I look upon the concept quite unfavorably . I love being who I have emerged to be in the second half of my life and would not want to relive the years when I didn’t have the confidence and wisdom I now do . But yet I often find myself reminiscing with a fascination of my earlier life and childhood . It almost seems it was another person living in my body . I think that rather than reliving my life at any earlier point I would eagerly visit those times and spend time talking to that earlier version of me . Oh the things I would love to say to my younger self . Mostly I would want to give her all the things I lacked and longed for that I thought needed to come from external sources , yet found buried deep inside myself . I would like to shower that young girl and young woman with all those treasures I now can afford to so abundantly give myself . If only .


Feb, 2022