“Love Everyone For Who They Are.”


Over the past few months – my 8 year old daughter has been finding any chance she can to write things like “Love Everyone For Who They Are” or “Believe in yourself” or “Love everyone on Earth”  or “Take care of each other” – whether it is on a community black board at the local frozen yogurt shop, on sample papers at the art store or at the beach in the sand.

For the majority of her life – she has felt like the Odd one out. Different.

An “Other.”

She has come to the conclusion that there are many other “Others” out there – who feel just as alone sometimes as she does and that maybe leaving random notes for them to find in unusual places, might just remind them of how beautiful they really are.

Funny thing is – most of us feel like “Others” on a daily basis.

Even those with over 2000 “Facebook friends” that “Everyone loves!”

We could all use these little reminders now and again and today I needed to put this photo here and remind myself to love ME for who I am – even when I feel ugly, “Frumpy”, less than perfect, broken, saggy and flawed.

I thought maybe you might need it too…and maybe, just maybe you (and I) might  follow her lead and start writing “messages in the sand” for other “Others” to find when they need it the most.

Random acts of uplifting thoughts – left for the people who need to find them…sounds like a great way to spend those few minutes you would have spent checking to see what your “Friends” are doing on Facebook when you are out enjoying a walk on the beach, enjoying your favorite frozen yogurt flavor or browsing art supplies in the “Pen” section of the art store.







How I see it.


Sometimes I find that I have allowed myself to fall into the “Woe Is Me” state of mind.

Today was one of those days…where my head was pounding, my body is aching, I cant breathe through my nose, my throat hurts, I haven’t slept more than 2 hours at a time for a week (new puppy in da house!), Im exhausting myself with work again and trying not to worry about various other things…etc.

I wanted to crawl into bed and lay there and hide from life for a while… but instead – I went and grabbed my little girl from school and though my head was pounding to the point I stepped away and cried for a few minutes – I never once let her know that I was hurting that much, because it was our “Special time” together and she was so excited to go get her hair cut and colored (I let her get a pink and blue stripe!) and pick out a new dress to wear for the last day of school…not because I didn’t want her to see me being “Weak” or think that Im a “baby” or have her worry about me – but because I knew I could do it…no matter what…

Because no matter how much my head hurt today or how exhausted I am – I reminded myself to be thankful that all I had to deal with was a migraine and a very tired body…because today, someone found out they have cancer, had to watch their child die, dug through a garbage bin to find a scrap of food to try to split between their 3 starving children living in the back of their car, got blown up by a bomb halfway around the world and no where near their family, walked 12 miles one way to fetch tainted water to take back to their village and hoped no one would get sick from drinking it for one more day, caused a fatal accident because they were distracted by changing the radio station, lost their entire retirement fund because of a relative that stole their bank card, lost their right hand in a woodworking accident and now cant provide for their family, lost their job and have to tell their wife and 3 kids they wont be able to afford to keep their house, watched their town destroyed by a tornado, gave birth to a still born child at full term, accidentally shot their best friend in a hunting accident, spilled soda all over their keyboard and shorted out their computer and lost their entire senior thesis with a week left before graduation, found out their mate is cheating on them…I could go on….

When I feel like the World is out to get me or my obstacles are too big to conquer – I remind myself that things could be so much worse.

My family is healthy. My children are thriving and happy and beautiful. My husband loves me dearly and I him. People like my art and allow me to document their lives and those they love. I make people smile on a daily basis, even when I find it hard to smile myself.

Sometimes what we feel like is a “Giant Mountain” in our path – is actually just a pebble.

It’s all how you look at it.

I remember asking my Mom how she was able to deal with all of the struggles she faced in her life and  having cancer 4 times – she always had an “It could be worse” response.

“How can you be smiling so much right now Momma…knowing you are going to die?”
“It could be worse Jenny…I could be dying AND blind, and never gotten to see my babies smile.”

I can only hope to be that strong.