Best living gifts

If anyone had told me gifts are alive, I would raise my right eyebrow… thinking only of puppies, kittens or ponies. But over the past forty-eight hours, I believe in the miracle and gifts of family.

My HH has explored his ancestry for the past two years, and this weekend we met one of his cousins, Hillard, and his wife Mary; and we drove together to Kansas City to meet Hillard’s 99-year old mom, Beverly, and Hillard’s sister Linda, her sweetie Mike, and sister Ellie.

Linda met and welcomed us into her gorgeous home with warm embraces and fabulous food. She introduced us to her children and grandchildren.

We sat around tables, sofas, and the floor telling stories, sharing photos, identifying events, and smiling at nicknames, outfits, hairdos, and travel destinations. More details and photos forthcoming. My heart is full of love and gratitude for family, technology, and openness.



Old and valuable photos that reveal lives well lived

More changes coming

When everything goes the same, we stay the same. When things are shaken up a bit, we change. I’m speaking to the latter today. To put the kibosh on mediocrity, we must change to realize our prosperity and abundance. There is so much good in change. Think Marie Kondo meets Kansas/Emerald City Dorothy.

New job for my HH: his new office is 5 minutes from our home. He is happy and productive and making a bigger contribution to the community.

New home for us: We will transition to our new home in the coming months. This one is more ‘house’ like, airier, brighter, more charming, quieter, and more prosperous. I forsee more creativity coming from thre too.

New season for all: Spring has begun and the green leaves of flowers are popping up all over our city. The Katy Trail is clear and dry so walking and cycling have begun for me too. I hear there is imminent construction for the Trail, so I will ‘hide and wait’ to see its positive impact.

Change is growth. Embrace it and good will come.



Spring blooms and changes

As seen on posts from friends: the poppies are in full bloom in California and the bluebonnets have popped up in Texas. Here in Missouri, I have not seen any flowers, but the rains of yesterday and last night should have watered the bulbs! 🌷🌻🌼

As for changes: I look forward to many. New job for my HH, a new home for us both (where still unknown), new adventures and travels, and some tweaks to my vision board.

As Ghandi famously said, “Be the change you want to see in the world.”

Create a life you love by changing the way you think. Be >>> Do >>> Have.

Embrace change and watch the magic happen.

My personal favorite change quote, from Katherine Hepburn:



It’s official: my HH has a new gig!

After three intense days of meetings, conversations, and strategizing, my HH, the every wonderful Mark Schnitzer, began a new journey yesterday, ten days earlier than planned. He is now the Central Physician Advisor of SSM Health, St. Louis Region. That means he is accountable for the insurance denial management and Medicare short stays of seven hospitals. He has worked tirelessly for the past two years to learn more, grow intellectually, create policy, and make his hospital more successful, all while having fun and enjoying the journey.

Today, we’ll go to his old office, clean it out, transfer his documents and his Johns Hopkins academic chair, and move into his new office, five minutes from our current apartment.

To say that I’m proud of my MarkSchnitzer is an understatement. He is making a huge contribution to this community. He is brilliant, handsome, talented, thoughtful, and hard-working. Kudos to SSM for recognizing this man as the ROCK STAR that he is.

Work hard, play hard, soar, and have FUN!



Food for thought or thoughts for mind food

Here are some life lessons that I’ve learned and internalized in the past two weeks. I hope they help you too:

💡Confront your fear and grow out of it

If you’re ‘scared’ of something, confront it head-on. Stand in front of an audience, swim, fly a plane, enter a dark place, eat the insects, jump off the diving board. Then you will realize you are stronger and braver than you think, and you will be released by the grips of fear. I dove in a dark, refreshing (a.k.a.cold) grotto last week to be pleasantly surprised by the experience and all the treasures I saw under the water.

💡Be confident

You are terrific. You are beautiful/handsome. You are enough. Believe me! Living my best life gives me the confidence to travel alone, eat alone, cook new meals, and take on new challenges.

💡Step out of your comfort zone

Do things you have always dreamed. Explore outside the ‘normalcy’ of your life. Be a difference-maker and a visionary. Making promises I’m unsure of how to keep is my super-power. My vision board keeps me heading in that direction.

💡Be interesting

Share your story. You may have done something that inspires others. Everyone has life experiences and yours may be just what someone needs to hear and learn from and make their own dreams come true, or vice versa. On a long car ride, in an airplane, during a walk, or at the small, corner dinner table, you learn a lot about someone.

💡Be present

Enjoy where you are and with whom. Make the most of each encounter and be grateful for its teachings.

💡Exhibit love, appreciation, & gratitude at all times

Those three emotions breed more. You can’t be in any other emotion when you’re in gratitude: no sadness, anger, disappointment. I know in my heart how fortunate and blessed I am.

Gentle reminder: the five types of people you want to surround yourself with are the inspired, the motivated, the passionate, the grateful, and the open-minded.



Do it with passion or not at all.

The hairstylist who loves creating beautiful and functional hairstyles stands on their feet all day to display their artistry. The teacher who is with young, creative, oft squiggly minds displays patience and guidance to their charges. The instructor who breathes compressed air part of the day ignores a blunder and misses the photo or fish of the day to monitor their student displays composure and professionalism. The writer who commits to telling some story regularly displays discipline, joy, and dedication. The chef/cook who experiments with spices, measurements, kitchen gadgets displays creativity and scientific knowledge in their stadium. They all do ‘it’ with passion, or not at all.

Do your ‘it’ with passion. Feel the fire in your belly. Do what you love and love what you do. The sky’s the limit.



What’s next?

Good things have a beginning, middle, and end.

Making the commitment to read, study, pack and plan kicked off this week in Florida. The beginning is the commitment. It can be anywhere for you…

The middle includes the tasks, the thing, the project or event on the/your agenda. Enjoy the heck out of it. Make memories, more plans, loftier goals.

Thus, I report that my week in the sun, above a textbook, and under the Atlantic and Gulf waters concludes.

What’s next?

What’s on your vision board? Dream big!



Creating my best life

Starting with a thought, progressing to a plan, write it down and speak it aloud, culminating in a goal, this is the essence to speaking something into existence.

“ … if it’s not written, it’s not true.” C. Victor Brick

Today I write that my goal for completing the requirements to achieve the PADI Master Scuba Diver reached fruition. I owe a huge THANK YOU to my HH Mark Schnitzer, for his loving support and encouragement, and to my rockstar instructor, Derek Akers, for his guidance and patience.

“So let it be written; so let it be done.” Original source unknown.

“Write it down and do it!” Denise Schnitzer



Fabulous Florida inside my commitment to my cause

I’ve been in Florida since Sunday, March 10, with little time to write, but a lot of time to think, explore, learn, and now share.

The sun is high and hot; the trees are green; and the cool breezes pass gently over my face and through my oft-wet hair. I’m here for five days to learn six courses towards PADI master scuba diver certification, a journey I began when I was eight years old. Encouraged my my HH to achieve the highest level before professional, I’m happy to report that I only have two days left in the trainings and I’m almost complete.

My rockstar instructor Derek Akers, from Scuba West in Hudson Florida, is a patient, wise, good-humored diver and teacher. I hope everybody who learns how to dive is as fortunate as me to have such a good instructor.

Because I don’t have a camera underwater, I rely on others to share their photos. I will share the photos when they share with me.

Tip for the day: Do what you love and love what you do.