In celebration of the 40 years I have been occupying space on this planet, I give you 40 things I have learned in 40 years – in no particular order.

1. Embrace change. It is inevitable.

2. Love with all your heart and soul. Make it fill up your lungs and feel it in your pinky toes. There is nothing like it.

3. Don’t be afraid. Fear will freeze you in time. But love and acceptance will project you forward.

4. Planting a garden and reaping it’s rewards are one of life’s greatest pleasures.

5. Dance often with reckless abandon.

6. Listen.

7. Nobody can ever tell you the benefits of great sleep and drinking lots of water. Make both a priority.

8. The cure for anything is salt water – sweat, tears or the sea.

9. Get dirty.

10. Strive for moderation. But don’t be so rigid you never throw caution to the wind.

11. Learn from your mistakes. But do not be afraid to make them.

12. Work hard and play hard.

13. When you are unhappy, let someone know. You don’t need to have a temper tantrum, but it’s best to communicate how you feel rather than keep it locked inside. Feelings have a funny way of finding their way out.

14. Eat healthy.

15. Learn how to cook one at least one thing so well you would be proud serving it to your boss or your future in-laws.

16. Watching your parents die is the hardest thing you will ever do. Don’t be too proud to admit that.

17. Make a bucket list and cross things off one by one.

18. Invest in a good therapist and good shoes. They are both worth it.

19. One of life’s celebrations is aging. Throw a birthday party for yourself or someone.

20. Compliment someone everyday. It makes both parties feel good.

21. Don’t trust people who hate animals.

22. Never be ashamed to admit that you need help.

23. Food = Love.

24. Do not live in the same city for your whole life.

25. Push yourself outside your comfort zone as much as possible.

26. Take care of your teeth.

27. Find a best friend.

28. Forgive.

29. Find a place that makes you feel connected to the earth AND to a spiritual world. A forest. A beach. A field of wildflowers. Go there when you think you don’t have the time and be amazed at how much time opens up for you.

30. Tell someone you love them.

31. If a friend is hurting, don’t ask them what you can do for them. They will not know what to tell you. Just think of something and do it.

32. Do something creative, even if you think you aren’t a creative person. It will help you approach all your problems with a different outlook.

33. Have at least one outfit that makes you feel stunning. Wear it often.

34. This world is filled with uncertainty. Find some faith.

35. Do not categorize things. It allows for prejudging. Which makes too much room for prejudices.

36. Find happiness in the small things.

37. Learn how to swim.

38. Your body is not your enemy. Embrace it for what it can do, not what it can’t.

39. Have a rough plan, but don’t be afraid to change your course.

40.  Whenever possible, watch the sunrise and the sunset.

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Julie Adolf - I love your list. Love, love, love it.

Love you, too.


photogirl - Thanks Julie! Love you bunches too!

Jennifer - “Happy Brithday.” How sweet is that? I hope you save that little piece of paper forever and ever. He’s such a gem. Wonder where he gets that??? Love you…

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