Dear Dictionary… I Need the Word

Dear Dictionary –

talked about this

Your book is lacking
a few words
I so desperately need.

I’ve already told you
there needs to be
a word created

to describe the
the overflowing feeling
of love

I feel
when I think
of my granddaughter.

Other grandparents
this conundrum…

But now
I need
another word…

I watched
the movie

An Academy  Award

for best supporting actress,
best cinematography,
and best writing of an adapted screenplay.

And at the end,
I sat

The anger…
The hatred…
The sorrow…
The heartache…

The hope…
The compassion…
The conviction…
The love…

Dear Dictionary,
can you give me the word
that describes all of this wrapped up in one?

And then I listened
to the closing song,
Mighty River.


I so want to talk
about this
powerful film.

But I don’t
want to
spoil it

for those
who haven’t
seen it.


And let me share the opening verse to Mary J. Blige’s Song, Mighty River:

Life is a teacher, time is a healer
And I’m a believer like a river wild
Ego’s a killer, greed is a monster
But love is stronger, stronger than them all.

Can we
let Love Be Stronger than them All?





Have you seen this movie?

After a busy few days this wonderfully long holiday weekend, hubby and I settled in by a warm fire, Christmas tree lights lit (yep – I put it up this weekend), pizza delivered from our favorite shop in Mars (Posti’s – Bacon, Onions, Mushrooms on hubby’s half, and extra cheese!), and a tall pour of red wine, and we watched one of the most amazing movies I’ve seen in a long time – Lion.

I really had no idea what it was about, which is unusual for me when watching a movie.  Hubby always gets exasperated when I want to pick the Friday night movie at home.  My routine begins with scrolling through the entire list available on Pay Per View and Netflix’s new releases.  When I find a title that appeals, I go to my iphone or laptop to google the movie and read the synopsis and reviews.  When I finally choose one (about a half hour later), it is usually not the best movie…. I fall asleep halfway in… and hubby ends up watching it and waking me at the end to go to bed.

But Lion is one our youngest son has mentioned a few times as one he thought we would really enjoy, so when I began scrolling and came to the title, I simply chose it – no synopsis – no review – no clue what it was about – just figuring it was about a Lion.

Ha! Not about a lion in the way I thought.

First of all…. Dev Patel.   (happy sigh) Such a gorgeous, gentle, sweet-spirited actor and human being.  You may remember him from Slumdog Millionaire and The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel (two other wonderful movies if you haven’t seen them).

Second… the cinematography!

Third…  the story!  A TRUE story.

I think many of us will relate on different levels, but for me, I could relate to being “lost.”  Maybe not in the same way Saroo was, but nonetheless “lost.”  I can also relate to the reunion, the brotherly love, and adoption.

But what I was completely blown away by (and driven to unstoppable tears in the end), was the powerful spirit of this 5-year old boy who survived his ordeal, and then his journey at the end of the movie (which I don’t want to spoil for you), so I won’t say what happened.

I can’t imagine anyone who would not be touched and inspired or their heart warmed and literally nourished by this movie.

Take some time, and give yourself the gift of this movie.

And then, if you feel so inspired, you can give a gift to help the over 80,000 children who go missing in India each year by donating to the #LionHeart Campaign.   The #LionHeart Campaign has collaborated with extraordinary organizations working on the ground to protect children in India and around the world. Contributions will provide critical financial support to enable the charitable organizations of Magic Bus, Childline India, and Railway Children India to do even more.

Cheers & Hugs,


A Wizard of Oz Party

A Wizard of Oz Party.

Yesterday, I shared a recipe for Butterscotch Haystacks that I mentioned I made for a  Wizard of Oz Party.  Today, I want to share some more of the super simple treats I prepared for our little group of 11 ADULTS who decided we wanted to watch the Wizard of Oz together.

I prepared a salami, cheese, and olive tray in the shape of the infamous Yellow Brick Road.

And oh what a joy it was to answer my cell phone at exactly the assigned start time of our little party to be asked to come outside…..

When I stepped out onto the porch in the dark and looked into the driveway, a group of seven silly, sweet friends had their arms linked together in a row and came skipping up to the porch singing, “We’re off to see the Wizard… the wonderful Wizard of Oz…” as if they were on the yellow brick road.

I knew we were in for a fun night!   One friend dressed as a scarecrow and another in the “outfit” she wore when she saw the movie for the first time – jammies, a blanket, and pig tails!

We had Bugles “Tornadoes” to dip and munch….

along with Potato Sticks “Scarecrow Straw” and Cheese Curls “Lion Tails.”

There were Hershey’s Kisses “Tin Man Hats”

and bowls of Skittles and Dark Chocolate M&M’s “Somewhere Over the Rainbow.”

We gathered at the bar first for drinks and toasting to get the evening started, then made our plates and settled into comfy seats (some even on the floor) to watch the classic we had discussed weeks before talking about how scared, yet fascinated we were as children.   (Notice even Charlie – peeking from front bottom right below – and his friend Gemma hunkered in.)

For almost two hours, we were mesmerized as if we were children, yet noticing so many more things as adults.  We sang along and recited phrases.  We laughed, we gasped, we recounted childhood memories…

It was a silly theme and reason to get together, yet somehow turned into a sincerely authentic experience…

Maybe I’m still on the Brene Brown buzz of vulnerability and courage to be oneself after reading her latest book, Braving the Wilderness, but I woke up the next morning (granted a bit fuzzy from a wee bit too much wine), but feeling completely joyous and connected and complete.

What would life be like without friends?  I hope I never have to know.

And remember……….

You’ve always had the power my dear.  You just had to learn it yourself.”

Cheers & Hugs,


Love Life

love life bird yellow

So it’s Friday night – though you are reading this sometime after 6:00 am EST on Saturday.  (If you haven’t caught on yet, I schedule my daily posts for 6 am EST, but I typically write them the evening before.)  😉

And for this particularly exciting Friday evening (as I am fighting off a head cold that is trying to get the best of me and a little bit of a sore back – did something at the dang gym – grr!), Marty and I ate Chinese take out (I indulged in my favorite 8-treasure rice from Jimmy Wann’s and a nice glass of Red Zin – my first all week!) in front of a warm fire… and I got to pick the movie.

I rarely even care what is on television, but I love to pick a movie on Friday evening for some reason.  ( I know – really exciting stuff – eh?!)

So, as I write this, I am not only sniffling from the nasal drip of this cold, but from literally bawling my eyes out.

We watched “The Fault in our Stars.”

I know – a little late to the game on this one – eh?  But – wow – what a beautiful story…

Ok – maybe a little mushy, a little cliche, a little predictable.

But also so life affirming, thought provoking, and a reminder of how precious life is.

A story that shows us how we need to discover that a good life does not mean we have to be famous or accomplished or published or world-renown ….

One of my favorite lines is when 16 year old cancer patient, Hazel tells her boyfriend Gus, an 18-year old young man who is dying and disappointed that he didn’t do something greater with his life:

“You say you’re not special because the world doesn’t know about you, but that’s an insult to me. I know about you.”

My BFF, Jill, and I have often said to each other throughout the years, “What’s it all about?”

I think it’s about loving…

Loving life – and the people that are in our life…

And isn’t that enough?

So what a coincidence that I had made this (yet another – been on a crafty kick this week) card with this crazy little bird that I can’t even tell you what colors I used, because I kept combining and mixing and blending a million colors until I liked it, from the SU stamp set called – of all things –  “Love Life.”

So Discover how to love life.

It is worth it.  Every cherished moment.

Cheers & Hugs,

And P.S.  I’ll be baking tomorrow… look for a new recipe I’m trying for Orange Slice Cookies.