Gratitude 28May16 Dr. Maya Angelou

Today Dr. Maya Angelou has been gone from us for two years. She will never be forgotten.

I stood for 2+ hours in the rain outside of that store. A woman on a mission, Dr. Maya Angelou’s book in hand. October 1996 was a time before everyone had a cell phone, iPod or iPad for self-entertainment. Back then, people talked to one another. Excited to meet Maya, we cited our favorite book, saying or poem and why.

When they finally opened the doors and allowed us to slowly file in, we all kept asking “What is taking so long?” The murmur rolled through that she was taking her time and talking to each person. The complaining stopped. Before I even saw her, I heard her voice and her rich, robust laughter. There she sat, totally at ease and looking quite “regal.” Indeed, she did chat with each of us as she signed our books with slow deliberate artistic strokes.

Maya Angelou 28May14 003“Hello, Child.” “Would you please sign this for my daughter? It’s Jazmine with a Z” “Well, what is your name?” “My name is Laura, but her’s is Jazmine with a Z” “Why a Z?” she inquired. “Because I always wanted a little girl named Jaz.” “Well, to Laura and Jazmine with a Z, it is then.”

I saw her speak several times after that at the University of St Catherine “Woman of Substance.” series. Every time I came away thinking how simply complex she was. Her words so deep, yet, simple. Each time I anticipated her beginning line of her renowned poem that speaks to all women — “Pretty women wonder where my secret lies” and ending with — “Phenomenally. Phenomenal woman. That’s me.”

Today I am thankful

Women who inspire; my daughter and my best friend
A cleansing cry just because
The yearning for something more in life

I have attached a link to Dr. Maya Angelou’s reading of my favorite of all her work. Enjoy.

affectionately yours, Laura




Gratitude 10May16 Late Bloomers

What do Julia Child, Colonel Sanders, Martha Stewart and Claude Monet have in common? Their success came late in life. I am challenged by that voice within me that says “You will never achieve your dreams.” When that voice overrides logic, I hit the internet to read the stories of all those that are what we call “Late bloomers.”

1aWe all are in awe of child prodigies. Those that just have a natural born gift that flourishes from a young age. Then, there are those of us who take some time finding their way. Maybe part of that is, due to life circumstances, we settle for what is safe and for monetary security, rather than being true to yourself and ambitions. In our youth, life had a way of getting in the way. For women especially, the role of motherhood has a way of dissipating dreams into vapors when weighing your goals against your children and theirs.

Today I am thankful

  • Being lazy on the chilly rainy day
  • New library books are waiting for me
  • Toes are polished a bright orange that makes me smile.

There is something to achieving success after life lessons have been learned. As we age, we become more secure in who we are with the conquests of our youth being played out. We can look back on “What was it I wanted to be when I grew up?” When your kids are grown, retirement approaching, and you are wondering “What now?” It is time to dig into your hope chest and dare to dream. Life is not over; it has very possibly just begun for us.

affectionately yours, Laura

Gratitude 3May16 Exquisite

jumpingToday’s blog is brought to you by the word exquisite. That is my word for each of you today. By definition it is an adjective and means extremely beautiful and typically delicate. It is my belief that I don’t care how physically beautiful or fine you are or think you are — if what come’s out of your mouth is trash — Baby, you ugly.

Today I am thankful

  • The sounds of birds outside my window
  • My banana & peanut butter smoothie
  • Grandbaby time

Enjoy this beautiful springtime weather.

affectionately yours, Laura