Today is Thursday, ergo,  #TBT photos (throwback Thursday):

Denise, 1 yr old
















Denise, 10 yrs. old


Denise, 29 yrs. old

Keep smiling through all stages of life.



Drive carefully, safely, and friendly-ly

My first experience with the law in Missouri was not as FUN as I planned. Officer Friendly gave me the gift of a speeding citation on a city street. He claimed I was driving highway speed, which I certainly was not.

I went to court to plead my case. The judge was a pleasant woman who lacked lipstick and a smile. She was clear and fair and ordered me to take driver’s school.

In the comfort of my home, I took an online driver’s school and passed with flying colors. When I called the court to clarify the court number, the court clerk told me this court does not accept online courses. [sigh] So I quickly called the online course, canceled my test and requested and received a full refund.

Take Two! I registered for an in-person course. I arrived on time and prepared. The teacher was a special-ed teacher with 21 years of experience teaching these drivers classes. She began by showing us a video; then another, and another and at 3:00 pm the last video played. She handed us our Certificate of Participation & Completion of Driver Improvement Program upon declaring aloud what new thing we had learned from all the videos. We all passed.

As I drove carefully and slowly on to the highway toward home, I noticed all the other drivers who could benefit from this class and those videos.

Stop texting, applying make-up, talking on the phone, reading and fumbling around while driving!

I will drive more carefully, safely and, as Miss Congeniality, more friendly!





Take it to the top!

Dreams are meant to be realized. Friends are meant for cherishing. Places are meant to explore. Memories are meant to recount.

Time is fleeting.

Go out, have FUN, make memories.

Take your imagination to its top. Climb the stairs of this FUN life. Do what your heart guides.



Blue skies and good in everything

I went to the court to fight a speeding ticket. Surrounded by other people with similar issues, and worse issues, I played the game. I arrived on time, took my place in line, waited over an hour, then I plead my case to the judge. I ended up paying court costs, promising not to get another speeding ticket for sixty days, and I have to take driver school. 🤣 That’s actually quite small price to pay.

Today the Internet people came to our apartment to install new Internet Wi-Fi . The technician said they’re doing it in all the units. Now my computer doesn’t work.

On the good side: The sky is blue. The air is clear. I’m going outside to play.




Enjoy Life indeed!

As far as road trips go, this one was pretty easy. A straight five hours north, lead us into a suburb of Chicago at the perfect time. We parked, walked into the convention hall and were amazing to see thousands (yes, they expected 7500+ over the two-day expo) of people also craving gluten-free and allergy-friendly foods.

This event began in 2007, conceived out of the necessity for people with allergies to wheat, nuts, dairy and other ingredients. Convention centers in seven states hold this huge Expo annually, and it’s getting bigger. I talked to the organizer, a man called Tom, who told me his story and how this has grown.

After countless emails, Elizabeth, one of the organizers, greeted us (Mark came too) and set us up as GREETERS to the guests. Perfect !!! With the excellent help of another volunteer, Kathy, a physical therapist, we exchanged tickets for a SWAG bag. We made people smile, laugh and feel welcome as they entered the jam-packed convention hall.

What I learned is I’m not alone: other people in the US have food sensitivities. There were classes offered, but I was the greeter for my 4-hour shift, so I didn’t go. There were bloggers, new and established vendors and myriad of product samples.

Enjoy Life – Title Sponsor:

Enjoy Life Foods is the leading brand in the growing Free-From category, featuring a robust portfolio of Certified Gluten-Free and Non-GMO Project Verified products that are free-from 14 allergens – wheat, peanuts, tree nuts, dairy, casein, soy, egg, sesame, sulfites, Lupin, mustard, fish, shellfish, and crustaceans. Founded with the goal to create great-tasting, allergy-friendly foods, the Enjoy Life line includes cookies, snack bars, chocolate bars, baking chocolate, baking mixes, seed and fruit mixes, protein bites and lentil chips, all available in natural and conventional grocers and mass retailers throughout the United States and Canada.


I share because I care.



SWAG bags for 7500 guests




Travel is a great educator

I believe travel is a great educator.  So, I’m on the road again…Today: heading to Chicago, IL.  Details forthcoming.

Here we come, Gluten-Free and Allergy Expo. To learn, to share, to explore, and to inspire.

Where will you go today?



Reach out to touch the sunshine

Waking up to the sunshine changes me. I’m more alive, energetic and ready to start my day.  I’ve heard (and confirmed) that there are 300 days of sunshine in Colorado. Wow!

I need sunshine. I need the energy the sun gives off. It’s like a big, warm hug.

Gotta go, there’s sunshine calling my name! I am so thankful.

Go out, explore, have FUN today.



Lesson: BE yourself

I’m learning to adjust to cold, snow, layering my clothes, and flying in and out of the STL airport.

I do miss my expat life.

My STL friends are very dear to me. We have FUN and explore together, which fills my heart with joy.

In everyone’s life, there are ups and downs, friends, and experiences.  I write about mine and read about others’. The common lesson is BE yourself. My interpretation is:

🌺 You do you.

🌺 Stay true and authentic to who you (me) really are.

🌺  Have FUN every day!

Another great gift in my life are my life-long friends: from elementary and high school (shout out to Robin, Lori, Julie, Julie) to college (shout out to Kim and Shari), to all the places I’ve lived. I recently had a conversation with another expat spouse (shout out to Anne) who confirmed that we all want to make friends, overcome struggles and thrive in our lives.

Be well. Be yourself. Be the reason today is amazing!