discretion, friendship, inspiration, life lessons, love, mindfulness, motivation

When There’s Little To Be Sure Of

Once again, timing proves to be everything.  Lately it seems like a lot of people have started following the karma truck.  I will confess I’m not convinced that all of these new passengers are real – something tells me the WordPress filters are going through some kind of crisis.  And yet, today I received the loveliest message from someone new, and it was clear that she was neither a salesperson, corporate entity or accidental tourist.  My delight in her arrival somehow tripped the ignition which lately has been reluctant to start.

In the ether, it is tough sometimes to separate fantasy from reality.  Are we, in real life, what we project in our posts?  I seem to follow those who I believe are as transparent as their defenses and sense of propriety permit.  I have become friends with some who I have yet to meet, and I have every confidence that should circumstance and fortune collide, I would find them to be even more than my thoughts could have imagined.

Like Lori.  We finally met this week.  I recognized her instantly and she was more beautiful than any picture suggested.  She has a giggle like a song, and a heart that beats with a rhythmic love that just draws the world to her.  To be in her orbit was both exhilarating and comforting – for I was with someone I have known forever though I can’t remember where or when.  I just know it to be so.

For twenty-four hours we talked, commiserated, wondered about people we have grown to care deeply for (despite not being able to identify them if we passed on the street – and you know who you are, which is a good thing), shared personal histories in more exquisite detail, cried a bit, laughed far more.  My words are not doing this visit justice, yet I’m certain you get the gist.

Last week Bill @ drbillwooten.com was generous enough to include me as part of his WordPress Family.  The coincidence of these two moments is not lost to me.  We who write and read each other’s posts, who comment and delight, commiserate and comfort, find ourselves in a family of sorts.  Perhaps it is not one that is standard issue, nor one that can be identified by pictures and get-togethers.  But nonetheless, to one degree or another it is defined by connection and dare I say it, levels of love.  There is no ambiguity despite the opaque wall of anonymity.  Within these posts lie the magic of people I have come to love in a way that I need not try to define.  I just have to acknowledge that it is there.  And I do – with arms wide open.



friendship, inspiration, motivation

Saturday Smiles

Remember that poem that began “Monday’s child is full of _____; Tuesday’s child is _____” ?  I forget which child is endowed with what characteristic.  I was a Saturday child, and regardless of what I am supposed to have, I do have smiles.  Earlier this week, Ray’s mom at justiceforraymond.wordpress.com accorded me the award for ‘Most Influential Blogger Of The Year’.  I appreciate her vote of confidence, especially given the substantive and important issues she raises on her blog.  By comparison, I am arguably the “Lightweight Blogger Of The Year” – seriously.  I don’t want to diminish my appreciation with self-deprecation, tempting though it is.  I do want to express my appreciation for her high praise.  And thank her doubly because the only requirements in accepting such an accolade is to share it with others.  Clearly this is an abbreviated list – and I tried to include a mix of old and new.  These are people who prompt me to think more, feel deeply and enhance my life.  Thank you again Ray’s mom – drumroll please (two fingers working in syncopation on a table works well too):

most-influential-blogs-of-2012 (1)

davidkanigan.com (Lead.Learn.Live)




keiththegreen.wordpress.com (A Western Buddhist’s Travels)





ivonprefontaine.com (Teacher As Transformer)






Now – I’ve got more, but I realize that this list is getting quite attenuated.  To those I adore and didn’t mention this time around – trust me, the year is young.  To me, each person I follow is The Most Influential Blogger Of The Year.

anxiety, friendship, humor, inspiration, life lessons, mindfulness, motivation

Have I Said Thank You Lately?

I want to thank David @ davidkanigan.com (Lead.Learn.Live), Renee @ positiveboomer.net and Ivon @ ivonprefontaine.wordpress.com (Teacher As Transformer) for according me the Blog of 2012 award.

Blog of the Year Award 6 star jpeg

David wrote me this morning and suggested I read the rules, because I wanted to nominate him.  Apparently I can’t do that.  This is yet another clue to my personality – I live within the spirit and intent of the law, though I can’t confirm that I always follow it to the letter.  Call it petulance, a throwback to my pseudo-hippie years, or just a desire to expand the lovely opportunities in the day as widely as possible.

This is my way of telling you that I am bending the rules slightly, and I hope you’re all cool with that.  In January, I will write a post about how I have been impacted by a year’s worth of experience in this community.  For now though I’d like to just quickly mention that it has given far more to me than I have arguably given.  Were it not for David and Lori (donnaanddiablo@wordpress.com), I would probably have not continued.  I’m not in their league –  I know it and  I’m ok with it too.  I’m not a writer, I will never publish…I’m just a woman trying to figure stuff out.  David and Lori, in their personal and unique ways have somehow managed to keep me going each time I wanted to stop.  I’m not kidding you – each time.  Call it karmic connection, intuitiveness, generosity of spirit – it nonetheless continues to amaze and humble me.  Perhaps we truly are connected by some thin red thread that quivers every time one feels like falling.

To me, this award is for those who have such talent, perspective, humor, aesthetic sensitivity, etc that I return to their blogs with eagerness and curiosity.  What is Anake going to show me today, what pearls will Susan string together while forming her poetic necklace,  has Bonnie been prompted by some life experience that resulted in a posting both thoughtful and intuitive?  How will Misifusa lift me up today?  Will I feel the need to opine about John’s perspective on leadership?  You catch my drift.  There is so much talent out there, I’m still a neophyte.  At best I am a wondering soul with a decent vocabulary.

So without further comment, I nominate the following people for this award.  They inspire, amuse, delight, challenge and do so with such consistency that they truly are the bloggers of 2012.  The bad news, which I am fretting over, is that I’m sure I’m going to miss someone who I admire equally.  I am hopeful you know that this is an error of oversight, not intention.

Cathy @ largeself.wordpress.com

John @ johnrchildress.com


Paula @ stuffitellmysister.wordpress.com

Kristin @ letlifeinpractices.com

Bonnie @ paperkeeper.wordpress.com

Anake @ anakegoodal.com

Laurie @ passionateperformance.om

Deanna @ deannaohara.com (Redemption’s Heart)

Susan @ susandanielseden.wordpress.com

Elizabeth @ almostspring.com

Russ @ russtowne.com (A Grateful Man)

Bill @ drbillwooten.com

There are more…and this is where I am feeling the most anxiety – for I have been more enriched by this august cyber community than I ever could have imagined.  I promise you this, I will have the opportunity to acknowledge all of you before the karma truck finally parks.



anxiety, discretion, friendship, humor, inspiration, life lessons, love, mindfulness

That Space In Between

Home from the hospital – sore, swollen, fat jaw, bruised eye.  You should see the other guy.  Seriously, he looks great because I was asleep during my limited introduction to the doctor’s graceful hands and exacting instruments.   To add insult to injury, I think I even shook his hand before the procedure began.  Of course, I befriended the nurses, anesthesiologist, anesthesiologist’s assistant, nurse’s aide, phlebotomist and the volunteer who checked me in.  My interest is genuine and it also hedges my bets.  To like me is to help me if I need it and I really try to be a likable kind of patient.  Because mostly all I seek is a smile, a little reassurance and a cup of coffee.

I woke up with my heart pounding in my ears – “You’re awake!  You’re alive”  I silently repeated my name and address,  the names of family members, all the dogs we’ve had in proper order.  Wiggled my toes, fingers, nose – all present and accounted for.  Kelly the red-haired nurse who got engaged two weeks ago and is trying to plan a Christmas wedding because she’s also two seconds pregnant, brought me some ginger ale.  Ah, the art of sucking soda through a straw with a fat jaw is a challenge.  Half of the soda stains my hospital gown, the rest manages to make it down my throat.  “Where’s your pain level Mimi?”  About six, I gesture with my fingers.  “Do you want me to give you something for the pain”  Nope – just want to go home and put my head on my pillow.  Someone give Andy permission to get me home.

The reality is that with a circle of angels and a firm belief that there is a God, I got home pretty damn quickly.  And now that I’ve got nowhere I have to be, I will settle in and calm down, spend a bit more time soothing the voices in my head that tend to repeat stressful moments over and over – and over.  The whole thing took far longer than originally planned, for they removed two nodes instead of one.  But it’s all good – between the slices sent to microbiology and the samples to pathology perhaps we’ll know exactly what these interlopers are made of and how we can kick them out of their residences. Hey, maybe there’s a poem about neoplasm in here!   I hesitate to write too much because I still have a lot of meds in my system.  True story – after one of my spinal fusions, I received a call from work with news about a fantastic year-end merit bonus I had received.  Good manners being important to me, I immediately sent off an email to the Chair and the Vice Chair thanking them profusely for such largesse.  A few days later when I was corpus mentos, I read the sent email and it looked in part  like this –  “Thank you so much – I amrealyslpeesed…”  Was I horrified?  Yup – and when I called them they each laughingly assured me they were archiving the messages as a sample of when my writing ability eluded me.  Nice guys.  But I learned the valuable lesson that it is better sometimes to defer your communications until you are able.  In fact, there should be a warning label on medication which says “don’t drive or operate heavy machinery and if you feel inclined to write something, move away from the keyboard and whatever you do, don’t hit ‘send'”.

So before I make a WordPress fool of myself (wouldn’t be the first time, though it may be the first time it was unintended), I’m going to sign off.  Thank you for your prayers, your smiles, your sunshine, your teasing.  Thank you for your good wishes, better friendships and outstanding support.  Thank you for grinning if you find this sounds a little un-Mimi like and still read it all the way through.  And when I can lift a glass of something less benign than ginger ale, I will raise a glass to you.


friendship, humor, inspiration, life lessons, love, mindfulness, motivation

The Half And Half In My Coffee

I love coffee with half and half (for those of you outside the US – it’s half cream/half milk available in supermarkets everywhere around here).  My efforts ate healthy eating stops at the suggestion that this indulgence be sacrificed.  Can’t do it.  Won’t do it.  It makes my morning coffee more delicious in color and taste, allowing me to savor what one might call nectar from the gods.  Yes, I’m crazy about my morning coffee.  What does this have to do with you?

You’re my metaphorical half and half.  Seriously.  Taking baby steps to try to learn to write is something I am doing for me; the feedback and comments and conversations that we share engage, inform, inspire and amaze me.  And the generous praise I have received humbles me more than I can say.  I’m not that good – trust me.  You however, are phenomenal.  I received four awards over the past few days and for brevity and not a little self-consciousness, I’m going to acknowledge them in this post (and yes, despite my overall discomfort with accepting awards – I practiced my Oscar speech a hundred times when I was a kid…also my Grammy thank you..my Tony…my Emmy..).

Judy who writes raisingthecurtain.net is gifted with a delightful sense of humor and curiousity.  She is exploring all the aspects of her second act and sharing some observations about what to do once the curtain goes up.  If you have not visited her site, enjoy the show…Thank you so much Judy for three awards (talk about a bouquet of appreciation)  –

             And from adogwithfleas@wordpress.com, I was given the


A Dog With Fleas is where one goes to hear your own voice (but in better form).  Her writing reflects the challenges many experience daily – the dance of falling down and standing up taller, living with chronic medical issues, learning how to love one’s self and others, the mysteries and vagaries of the opposite sex, the indescribable feeling of a hearty laugh.  Scratch your itch at her site (get it, fleas?? Oh, I kill me  – you will be so glad you did.

Ok, quickly now – the requisite seven things about me (sigh, I find this part difficult)…

1. I think I’m far more graceful than I am.  Witness the ten stitches in one leg and an infected gash in the other and the gross bandages that cover both.  I limp into the gym and everyone cuts me a wide berth (no pun intended).  Suffice it to say – don’t leave metal step-up boxes within tripping distance of me.  Actually, just cut me a wide berth on general principle.

2. I have always been and continue to be a cheap date (though Andy would insist that ultimately there’s a price to be paid which is probably true).

3. I read between two and three books a week.

4. My iPod selection would embarrass or impress my kids, my in-laws, my friends and The Buena Vista Social Club.  Let’s just say that ‘eclectic’ doesn’t cover it.

5. My first crush that wasn’t an animal (the first being Gold Nugget – a palomino – I loved her) was Harry Belafonte.  I thought he was the most gorgeous man I had ever seen and would make my dad put his album on the stereo over and over (and over) again.  “She had one eye on the pot and the other on the chimney” – a lyric which makes me smile still.

6. I’m actually pretty boring – it’s everything around me that’s interesting.

7. For reasons that I do not know I’m a very good mimic.

Now for the fun stuff – who should be the next bearers of these awards?  I am trying very hard to make sure that I’m not repeating myself, so to those I have already mentioned – I still think you’re magical.  To these new bloggers I follow – I am so glad we have ‘met’ –








Thank you again for enjoying the blog, sharing your thoughts with me, and embracing me in this community of talent and heart and inspiration.

friendship, humor, inspiration, life lessons, love, mindfulness, motivation

A Week Of Surprises

Well this is has been quite a week – two awards – really??  Perhaps a more seasoned, sophisticated blogger would accept such accolades with greater serenity and a whole helluva lot more cool, but I lay no claim to sophistication nor experience.  And I have serious doubts about my ‘coolness’ quotient too.  So, I can respond with an enthusiastic thank you and gratitude.  I’m truly surprised and really pleased.  I’m not sure which tickles me more – being a recipient of such generosity or being able to introduce some of the wonderful talent that I take pleasure in visiting on a regular basis.

According to the rules of the award, I first and foremost want to thank newsofthetimes.wordpress.com for this award.  This is a terrific site to objectively discuss timely issues and share perspectives on subjects that are both far-reaching and compelling.  I’m always surprised by what the topic du jour is going to be – and am really impressed with the creativity reflected on this site.  Thank you again – and keep on writing!!

Next, I am supposed to recommend fifteen bloggers who I feel are deserving of this award.  This is a little tricky – for I have nominated some in the past who arguably don’t need one more award – they’re that good.  And yet, their names may appear again for their blogs are a constant source of delight, creativity and/or food for thought.  So here goes – I hope you can link to all of them.

Lead.Learn.Live.wordpress.com – David Kanigan is in a class by himself (and I mean that in the best possible way).  His posts have incredible breadth, heart and inspiration.  There are a host of things for which I could thank David – including the occasional ‘atta girl’ – this seems to be as good a way as any to express my appreciation for his talent and support to this novice.

The Grand Master/Little Master Series.com – I love the questions that are posed on this site, as the author strives to write books for parents and children which support strong values, confidence and compassion.

Help Me Rhonda. com – If you’ve never ‘met’ Rhonda – you’re missing a gift.  Funny, pensive, engaging and real – we have become cyber-friends of similar minds and sleep patterns!  Her writing never ceases to delight.

Girl On The Contrary.com – I’m laughing as I write this.  Her ability to find humor in the mundane, laugh-out-loud indignation at the little insults life can throw one’s way AND her excellent book recommendation make me forever in her debt.

Simon Marsh.com – Simon is a parish priest for an Anglican church in the north of England.  His observations of life, and the incredible generosity of his spirit always provides a peaceful respite, a place to visit where life’s complexities seem surprisingly simple.

Not Quite Old.com – Although none of us are getting younger, this blog and the adorable illustrations that accompany each post certainly gives one the impetus to make peace with gravity and maintain one’s humor.

Where’s My T-Backandotherstories.com – There is so much to this site – posts about the insults of illness and the aging, magnificent photographs from all over the world.  The delicate mixture of beauty and sorrow makes this site one I return to often.

Todd’s Perspective.com – You never know what Todd is going to post, for he scours the Internet for cogent articles, pictures, quotes that are as eclectic and different as one moment can be from the next.

Practical Practice Management – Tina offers up terrific posts about work life and management.  She can be provocative and thoughtful – and I appreciate that she is willing to tackle any number of sensitive issues.

supertucksmama.com and the book of alice  – Two blogs about two remarkable little children and their even more remarkable moms.  I just love checking into their worlds and see what’s new – for something always is!

I’ve just started reading these blogs and think you will enjoy them as much as I do – lifeintheboomerlane.com; magnolia beginnings.com; blessedwithastaronherforehead.com and tracie louise photography. com.  Whew – ok, I think I’ve met the second criteria!

Finally, I’m supposed to tell you seven things about me…hmmm..

1.  My profession has demanded that I be ‘out there’ yet at core, I’m a very insular person.

2.  My name is pronounced with a ‘short i’ in the first syllable, but down here in Northern Virginia, everyone calls me “MeeMee” (which would make my mother turn over in her grave).  That said, as a kid everyone called me “Mini” cause I was so short – sigh…

3.  I used to sing under the elevated subway in Queens where I grew up.  I’d try to hold a note for as long as it took for the train to pass.

4.  I am humbled by the people who have ‘found’ me over the course of the past year.  As I closed the door to working at the firm, and the concomitant loss of identity began to descend, another door really did open and it was one replete with love and some of the most amazing people I have ever known.

5.  I still cry when my kids leave to go to their homes – and the two married sons live only 15 minutes away.  Thankfully they still humor me and let me take them out on ‘dates’ like we did when they were little.

6.  My husband and I met by being set up on a blind date orchestrated by our two nieces when they were four years old and their moms (who were a little older).

7.  I am truly as corny as you imagine me to be.

Well, that does it for me today.  Thank you again – I am so thrilled to be part of this amazing group of people who create their unique magic out in the ether!

friendship, inspiration, life lessons

What A Surprising Saturday!

I want to extend my big thank yous to Genie for nominating me for the Beautiful Blogger award.  I’m a total novice when it comes to receiving awards (although I did practice my acceptance speech for an Oscar many times when I was a kid), so I am going to be quite dutiful in fulfilling the requirements for this award.  GenieSpeaks at WordPress is a love-filled, candid blog written with Genie’s incredibly generous spirit.  I admire her faith, optimism and ability to see the wonder in the smallest of moments.  Thank you again Genie!

I now have the pleasure of nominating seven others – and it is hard to select just seven, considering how many people’s work I admire…May I say – this is really hard.  With that caveat, here goes..


Manage Better Now

Marie Overfors, freelance writer

Help Me Rhonda

Missunderstood Genius

Girl On The Contrary


The Book Of Alice

That’s eight – I’m sorry!  But tis better to err on the side of generosity than miserliness, right?  I have to include the following blogs, because I really love them too:  supertucksmama, This Man’s Journey, Practical Practice Management, and manipal’s blog.

I’m not sure if all of these will directly link up – they are all on WordPress and they are all worthy of a visit from you.  Thank you to Genie again!!  Enjoy your weekend everyone!

OH!!  I forgot – you wonderful nominees – please copy and paste the award onto your post, name the person who nominated you (c’est moi) and pay it forward by nominating seven other bloggers…oops!