La Dorada – When the River Came

Hello everyone.  So I haven’t posted in awhile because we have been trying to make it though flood waters.  We haven’t had electricity for about 3 days and the water has been up to our knees in the house and in places outside when you’re walking you had to be very careful because it would go over your head.  Now we are just cleaning the mud out of the house and trying to salvage what we can.  You can find more of my story at: 

La Dorada, Caldas is a municipality of Caldas Department in Colombia.  Due to extreme rains and the Colombian government opening the damns in the area massive flooding has occurred along the Magdalena River.  

Farmers and Ranchers live along this area and many of their livelihoods are in danger due to the flooding.  Cattle had to be relocated to higher ground so that they are safe but there is not enough pasture (grass) for all of the cattle.  Most ranchers are small farmers and do not have enough money to buy hay to feed their cows since they usually depend on the naturally occurring pasture that is now underneath the river water.  

Like my father-in-law, selling their cattle is not an option since they depend on the cows for their livelihood selling the milk from the cows each day.  Due to the intense flooding many have been unable to even get the milk from their cows to the markets in order to sell it.  People who are already struggling financially are now even more stressed out because they have no income during a time when they will have to recover not only their land but their homes as well.  

This is not a request for myself but for the ranchers and farmers around us.  $20 (USD) will buy enough hay to feed 10 cows for 3 days.  I know that everyone in their own lives has their own financial responsibilities and obligations.  Please consider helping because I know that you would actually be someone’s miracle.  

Thank you!

Please see more of my updates and story at:


On Your Boat

‘Make sure everybody on your boat is rowing and not drilling holes when you’re not looking.’

It’s a realization that we all need to make.  Just because people (our ‘friends’, our ‘family’) are nice to us or seem to be helping us, we need to check and make sure that what others are doing is really in our best interest.  Just because someone is ‘helping’ you doesn’t mean that they have your best interest in mind.  Only you can make sure that your interests are being considered and that what is happeing is benefiting and not hurting you.  

Check your boat everyday, twice daily if you need to.  It doesn’t mean you’re paranoid, it means that you’re taking care of you. 

Do I like them?

I used to walk into a room full of people and wonder if they liked me . . .  Now I look around and wonder if I like them.

I used to stress everyday about if people liked me, did my clothes look ok, what if they knew about my personal life, would they like me?  I feel the undying need to impress everyone and to have everyone like me.  I needed that other people approved of me, approved of my style, my personality, of basically who I was.  Then one day I told a story to my classroom staff about what I did that weekend.  I didn’t think, it was like I just mouth vomited how I went on a date with this guy I met on a dating website and how he was like 70 pounds heavier than his picture and I didn’t recognise him and blah blah blah.  I stopped in complete fear in the middle of my story because I realized that I had opened up and oh my gosh, would they still like me?  Instead of judging my assistant asked, ‘so what happened?  Is he getting a second date?’  Haha . . . He didn’t get a second date.  But, I realized that they liked me for me, because I was a little crazy and I took more risks than most people.  When I left my job a year later to pursue other paths they made a comic book about all the dates I had gone on with people from the stories I had told them.  I am married now and while moving I found the book they made me.  Looking through it I started cracking up!  

It was a reminder that in a time when we are so concerned about what others think maybe all that really matters is what we think.  I used to care about what people thought. Now, it’s the oppposite.  I live on a farm and I wear boots covered in cow manure but every day I put on my eye makeup, do my hair and put on pretty earrings.  Why? Because I like it.  I don’t care if people do.  They only ones who see me are the cows and the guy that comes to pick up the milk everyday.  

I used to care if everyone liked me and then I changed.  Now I realize if you like me then you like me, if not that’s ok.  You don’t have to like everyone you meet and everyone you meet doesn’t have to like you either. 

Human Issues

“Self-awareness and self-esteem.  Those aren’t female issues, those are human issues.” – Curtis Hanson

Letting the Truth Out

Open your mouth and speak. Let the truth flow from you like the first rain of Spring. I know it’s not easy and it’s something that I struggle with everyday. But, when you keep it all inside it eats you up, fills you to the brim until one day you implode and explode. What does it matter if only you know the truths inside you? Speak, one word at a time….let the world know what you know. Release yourself from your own self made prison.

Inside out

I struggle

I laugh 

I cry and I sleep.

I tear apart the the world in my head,

I throw my emotions away.

The rain beats down harder

I scream

I collapse

There is nothing left.

I can’t hear the light.

The storm rages and the thunder comes.

Flashes and curls away.

I giggle

I beat my head

I rage against the world.

I tear of my hair

Yet it never ceases . . . 

I apply my smile 

Set out for the day.

I smile outside

I wither, I cry inside.

Toxic: Removing The Negative Energy

Toxic. Toxic people lead to toxic emotions which lead to a downward spiral in your own thoughts and feelings.

Lately I’ve been battling how I feel about a few people. It’s been very hard because one person is from my spouse’s family. I told my spouse the other day that I couldn’t be around one member of the family because she was ‘toxic’ to me. He agreed with me but then we went right back to our same patterns. I only have myself to blame because I thought maybe when we all talk this weekend things will be better and she will be reasonable and better. No, it was not.  

Then I realized that no matter what I did, how I acted, what I said or what I wanted or how hard I tried, I would never ‘fix’ the situation. I would never ‘fix’ her. The only thing I was doing was leading myself down an unhealthy path. I had been angry, unable to eat, unable to sleep and crying on and off for almost two weeks.  

Today I woke up and finally it hit me. Enough! No more. You can’t fix people. You can’t change someone who doesn’t want to change. You can’t help people who don’t want help. The only person you can truly control and help is yourself. You have to cut the toxic people out of your life. Yes, when it’s family it is harder. Yes, when it is someone close it is hard. But it has to be done and it can be done, not by completely ignoring them but by setting limits. I know this is what I need to do. It’s what needs to be done and it is not hard to cut them out of my life. The hard part is not feeling guilty about it.  

Why should we feel guilty? We shouldn’t! Why should be feel guilty about taking care of ourselves and our mental health? We shouldn’t! And when that person sees that they can no longer control you they try to change everyone’s perception of you. Don’t worry. I sat there and had her lie straight to my face and when I looked her in the eye I could tell she knew that she was lying but she didn’t care. We don’t need those people in our lives. They will only bring us down.  

Remember you are important. You are allowed to be selfish, to be angry, to be happy and unforgiving. You do not owe anyone an explanation for taking care of yourself. 

Quantity vs Quality

In everyday life we seem to almost be consumed by the constant bombardment to have quantity, to buy more or to subscribe to the latest fad. But when is more just too much?

The world is increasingly becoming ruled by technology driven fads, the fast paced changes can be hard to keep up with. With mainstream media pushing us to subscribe to their viewpoint of what we “need,” we may find ourselves moving faster in an attempt to keep up. We are pushed to believe that if we don’t own the newest technology or are not following the most recent trends we are somehow behind.

This constant drive towards an overindulgence of materialism can eventually lead to a breakdown and a subsequent negative effect on overall happiness. We may begin to think that we can buy our happiness or well being by getting quantity, when in actuality it has little to do with that at all. In a world consumed by the quantity concept is important to remember that quality is what we should strive for. 

With society expecting us to keep up with the ever changing pace, it’s good to take a step back and slow down. But, with all this stuff, this quantity, are we really happy? Research has shown that “stuff” doesn’t necessarily make us unhappy but it doesn’t make us happy either. It may begin to seem at times that out possessions, out quantity, begins to own us, rather than the other way around. Could we be happy with less, with quality instead of quantity? This seems obvious, instead concentrating on making very deliberate and conscious decisions about the things we consume and the actions we take. 

So, next time you are out remember to time to think before you buy that extra “necessity” or rush out to purchase the newest technology, do you really need it? As Julian Baggini said, “Seek first what is true and of value, and then whatever happiness follows will be of the appropriate quantity and, more importantly, quality.”

What is an adventure?

Are you tired of doing the same thing? Bored of the same routines? Or maybe you just want to spice things up. Adventure is an aspect of a full life that in modern society can easily be most neglected. 

Our thirst for adventure comes from within ourselves. We have an insatiable desire to experience things firsthand, to expand our knowledge and test our own limits wether strength, endurance or mental capacity and in doing this we can discover our true self. 

The choice to live an adventurous life, breaking free of the monotony of our daily routine is not an easy one. But, there is only one way to break free, just doing it. There is more to being adventurous than climbing mountains and traveling. In reality all you need for an adventure is novelty and courage. As George Eliot said, “Adventure is not outside man; it is within

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