At the farm, we begin each circle by reviewing Don Miguel Ruiz’s Four Agreements:

  1. Be impeccable with your word.
  2. Don’t take anything personally.
  3. Don’t make assumptions.
  4. Always do your best.

Often Sara asks the participants which agreement causes them to struggling the most. Agreements 1 and 4 are like breathing for me. If I am alive, I am practicing them. Agreements 2 and 3 have eluded me for 40 years now. Even now, after 2 years of intense effort, it takes all my concentration to even get close. Yesterday, as I contemplated the question of which is the most challenging, I finally decided that it’s the assumptions.Read More »


A is for…

Allen ate apples any time he could acquire them. Applesauce, apple pie–he had absolutely no aversion to apples in any form. He admired the assiduous agriculture and anticipated the ambrosial assortment annually. His attachment to assembling an astronomical album of asymmetrical specimen, particularly alabaster, arcane, and arctic variations, left authorities in the most active auction houses and advertising agencies awed.Read More »


magentaIt all started with that trip to Home Depot. Jared and I stood in the paint department, fighting over what color to paint the dining room, for hours.

I wanted a nice neutral color—an eggshell or beige. Something that would open the space up, let us get creative with the smaller details. I wanted the room to feel light and welcoming and elegant.Read More »

Review: A Man Called Ove

A Man Called Ove
A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I am not afraid to die. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not courting death. It’s just that I’m not actually afraid of what comes after death. After I shuffle off this mortal coil, I imagine I will be beyond all caring and hurt. In fact, I don’t think I’ll be aware at all.

“We fear [death], yet most of us fear more than anything that it may take someone other than ourselves. For the greatest fear of death is always that it will pass us by. And leave us there alone.” (p 325)

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2016 Gratitude 10: Discovery Horse

Just over a year ago, my uncle Joe called to offer me the role of “speaker buddy” for the TedX event he was organizing. The voices in my head immediately chimed in with helpful responses.

You’ve never done anything like that.” “Who are you to think you can help someone else write?” “Strangers are scary!” “You can’t handle responsiblity.” “Boy, he must be feeling desperate.

Somehow through the chaos I heard a tiny voice whisper, “Say yes now, before they convince you to say no.” So I did.Read More »