Happy New Year, friendly neighbors!
Wishing you a shiny new year filled with love, laughter, and lots of light.
Much love ❤
Happy New Year, friendly neighbors!
Wishing you a shiny new year filled with love, laughter, and lots of light.
Much love ❤
TGIM! This shiny new week’s inspiration is all about YOU.
Your heart knows what you really want.
Let it show you the way.
Happy winter solstice, friendly neighbors! You might be wondering why I am wishing you a happy first day of winter, which is my least favorite season (i.e. I don’t do winter). I am trying to focus less on the fact that it is now winter and more on the fact that daylight time will now start increasing by about two minutes per day. More daylight time in dreary winter is a very good thing. Bring on the light!
In case you didn’t know how hardcore a science nerd I am, I wanted to share with you how I celebrated the solstice tonight. The Museum of Mathematics hosted a solstice celebration across from the Flatiron Building in the plaza at 23rd Street. Math and science enthusiasts showed up to create a seven-pointed star, live streamed from a camera on the top floor of the Flatiron Building. We all gathered along the lines of a star that was measured with a giant protractor, drawn in chalk on the ground. Here’s the MoMath top math dude dropping some solstice knowledge on the crowd with his giant protractor:
Then we held foam glow sticks horizontally so they were touching end-to-end to form the sides of the star. The star looks like this without people:
Why did the star have seven points? The outer angle of each triangle measured approximately 26 degrees, which is the highest altitude of the Sun in New York City on the winter solstice (at noon). Starting tomorrow, daylight time will gradually increase by about two minutes per day as the Sun’s noon altitude increases a little bit each day, up until the summer solstice. Since the Sun has a longer apparent path to follow during the day, it takes a longer time to do so (as the Earth rotates on its axis 15 degrees per hour, which is the actual motion that makes the Sun appear to move throughout the day), resulting in more daylight time. I cannot. freaking. wait. for more light.
Nerdy enough? Heck yeah it was. Hope your solstice was on point, too!
Happy Serendipity Day! Every year on December 20, I repost my annual Serendipity Day reflections to celebrate the power of this auspicious day with you. Here’s to positive energy, following your heart, and the magic of soul mates. Much love ❤
Today is Serendipity Day, aka Serendipity Do Da, aka Do Da Day.
You would probably like an explanation.
If you didn’t see the movie Serendipity, then not to be bossy? But you really need to go ahead and do that. It’s all about fate and destiny and positive energy and has some amazing New York City scenes. Films like Serendipity take city love to a whole other level. But even if you did see it, you probably didn’t pick up on the fact that Jonathan and Sara meet on December 20. Being obsessive about those kinds of details, I totally did. Then I immediately made an executive decision that December 20 will always and forever be known as Serendipity Day.
When they meet, Jonathan and Sara are in Bloomingdale’s trying to grab the same pair of gloves. You know how sometimes you meet someone and there’s this instant intense connection? That’s what happens to them. So of course they can’t just go their separate ways. They have to go to Serendipity 3 (which is only a few blocks away – love the accuracy) for frozen hot chocolates. And then they go ice skating in Central Park. It’s one of those magical New York nights, filled with excitement and possibility.
When Jonathan writes down his number for Sara, the wind blows it away. She thinks it’s a sign that they’re not meant to be together. Or at least, not right now. She’s all about fate and destiny. So she makes him write his name and number on the back of a five-dollar bill, which she immediately uses to buy mints. Sara’s idea is that if the five-dollar bill makes its way back to her, then they’re meant to be together.
If you’ve read Something Like Fate, you can understand why I love this movie. I love it so much that my friend Joe and I used to celebrate Serendipity Day by reenacting the original Serendipity Day’s events. First, we put our names in at Serendipity. There’s usually a three-hour wait for a table around the holidays. I am not exaggerating. Serendipity is a gorgeous winter wonderland right now, all sparkly lights and trees and tinsel. Everyone wants in. But it was perfect because we needed those three hours to reenact scenes from the movie. We would head over to Bloomingdale’s, where we both grabbed a pair of gloves at the same glove counter. That counter doesn’t have gloves anymore so we had to bring the gloves over from the gloves section, but it still counted. Then it was off to Wollman Rink in Central Park. It was always the Coldest Night Ever when we did this. I don’t know how to ice skate, so we would kind of just stand there shivering and watching the glittery skyline and sending positive energy out into the Universe.
Then our table was ready at Serendipity 3 and it was frozen hot chocolate time! In the movie, Jonathan and Sara get red and blue straws in theirs. But we always got regular straws. So I asked about the red and blue ones. I was monumentally disappointed to discover that they don’t have those red and blue straws anymore. But then I got over myself because their frozen hot chocolate is the best in the world, regardless of straw color.
If Joe and I were at a point in our lives where we were single, we would each take out a five-dollar bill and write our name and number on the back (in red pen for accuracy). Then we’d give the bills to the waiter as part of his tip. Not that anyone ever called us. But that’s not the point. The point is that we put positive energy out there. We made a choice to create more possibility for finding true love. Anything is possible here in New York. This city makes magical things happen when you take action to work towards your goals.
How can you celebrate Serendipity Day if you’re not here in New York? Well, if you are already with your soul mate you can make frozen hot chocolates and call it a day. But if you are still searching, send positive energy out into the Universe today. Take some time to write down your goals. Visualize what you want your love life to be like. Then make a plan to take steps every day towards finding your person. All of these actions will help you get closer to turning your big dream into reality.
Oh, and PS? Serendipity 3 is also home of the $1,000 Golden Opulence Sundae, served in a Baccarat crystal goblet (which you get to take home), made with the world’s most expensive chocolate, and covered in 23-carat edible gold leaf. Just in case you weren’t sure what to order.
Happy Serendipity Day, friendly neighbors! Go make magic happen.
Guess what just arrived?
ARCs of Lost in Love! They are in the house! They are on the move!
Lost in Love is the second book of my City Love trilogy. I’ll be doing ARC giveaways on my socials leading up to the May 3 release date, so please stay tuned to my Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook for the latest.
And! If you want to read City Love before Lost in Love comes out, I have a hot tip for you. City Love is only $1.99 on Kindle until January 4. Get it 🙂
TGIM! Here’s some fresh inspiration for your shiny new week.
No goal can be accomplished without taking that first step. The first step is usually the scariest. But you got this.
Take that first step.
Greetings, friendly neighbors! I hope you are having a wonderful holiday season. To enhance your holiday cheer (and as solace for those of you who struggle with SAD and/or the holidays in general like I usually do), I wanted to offer you some inspiration and joy from the remarkable elephants at The Elephant Sanctuary in Hohenwald, TN.
The sanctuary is home to 14 magnificent female elephants who are now living happy and free after decades of captivity as circus or zoo entertainers. These elephants deserve all of the goodness we can give them, especially after the horrible conditions they have had to endure. There are many valuable lessons to be learned from The Girls, all good reminders for this emotional time of year.
So! I have compiled a list of Top Five Elephant Life Lessons for you.
1. Life is a gift.
Although I have much love for all elephants, Shirley is my favorite elephant in the whole world. Why? She has endured captivity as a circus elephant, a fire on a sinking ship, and 22 years in a tiny zoo, shuffling between only a plod of grass and a small cement holding pen. She had no other elephant friends. She wore chains. For 22 years.
But then she was rescued by the sanctuary’s friendly neighbors and brought to the sanctuary in 1999. At that time, she was reunited with Jenny, an elephant who performed in the same circus as Shirley about 25 years before. Shirley and Jenny totally remembered each other right away. Shirley showed Jenny her crooked hind right leg (broken when Shirley was attacked by another elephant in the circus), the missing part of her right ear (ripped off in the ship fire), and her various scars from the fire. Jenny patted Shirley’s injuries all over with her trunk. They were bonded for life, a love that transcended space and time, and Shirley carries Jenny in her heart to this day.
I write people love stories, but my favorite animal love story is Shirley + Jenny, reunited after 22 years. You can watch Shirley’s arrival at the sanctuary and their amazing reunion here. WARNING: There is no way you can watch this without crying. Be prepared.
Shirley is a survivor, and a role model for all elephants and humans. She knows that life is a gift to be appreciated every single day. At 67 years young, she is super active and gets around like the rock star she is. Go Shirley!
2. Enjoy the Now.
Elephants are a lot like people. They have distinct personalities and mannerisms. They have favorite things just like we do. Misty loves napping. Tarra likes watermelon and socializing. Sissy takes her tire around with her like a security blanket. Tange loves mudding. And my girl Shirley enjoys simple pleasures like basking in the sun or going for a swim. She likes to walk over small pine trees for a belly rub and scratch her ears with sticks.
These sweet Girls are gentle souls who understand that it’s all about the little things.
3. All you need is love.
This Trunk Hugs video of Shirley and Tarra says it all.
4. Treat others the way you want to be treated.
For her 65th birthday, Shirley received a delicious treat. A frozen fruit popsicle all for Shirley! While Shirley was enjoying her birthday treat, Tarra came over to investigate. Shirley is well aware of Tarra’s snack stealing tactics. But out of respect for Shirley’s special day, Tarra did not try to snatch a bite of the fruit. Instead she swirled her trunk in the air, then put her trunk in her mouth to taste the fruit essence. Way to be a friendly neighbor, Tarra!
5. Practice daily gratitude.
These sweet Girls are now very happy elephants. They have been given the gift of ele-heaven, spending each day in true sanctuary style doing whatever they choose. Elephants never forget. The Girls remember their life before sanctuary, the scary situations and lonely years they suffered, the losses of their fellow elephant friends they have mourned. I think that makes them even more grateful for the wonderful safe haven they now have in their forever home.
I watch the Girls on The Elephant Sanctuary’s EleCams. A lot. They looked especially happy today, grazing, dusting, napping, sunning, and socializing. When Shirley is extra happy, she does not hold back. Like the time she was in such a great mood she trumpeted right into Tarra’s mouth!
You can watch this video and lots of others on The Elephant Sanctuary’s YouTube.
Eternal thanks to co-founders Carol Buckley and Scott Blais, and everyone at The Elephant Sanctuary for giving these gentle souls such loving care, a beautiful environment, and a forever home. Here’s to many more years of happy elephant bliss ❤