Archive for May, 2015

A Mother’s Love Never Dies
May 7, 2015

TJ and Mom1
My friend TJ had a unique encounter that I thought would make a wonderful Mother’s Day post. Here is her story:

“I do not know how mother got to Bali. But the discovery produced a smile on my face. Mother finally got to travel. Just the week before I had carefully spread her ashes on my brother’s grave before heading to the airport.

I had been unable to discard the vessel that had contained her ashes and had held it on my lap for the long flight. I had been sure it was empty. I do not know why I looked inside.

We had been spending a magical week in Bali. Our guide was a devote Hindu. Karma, reincarnation and their varied beliefs were constant topics of conversation. I asked him about a resting place for Mother. His positive response was heartfelt; he would arrange everything.Sending jean

Two days later, we drove to the ocean with mother’s ashes. Waiting for us were several holy men, dressed in white. My mother was about to have a beautiful Hindu funeral. The men chanted, incense was burned, chimes were rung and offerings were made. Although in a language I did not understand, when she finally was given to the sea, I felt at peace.
Surprisingly, many people questioned the appropriateness Hindu ceremony.
“Would she have approved?”
“I do not know.”
Soon the answer would change.

Mother and I were never close. When I was barely 4, my 7-year-old brother, died. My mother retreated from life and me. She was a fearful, timid woman who spoke wishfully of world travel. Getting a passport scared her so much she abandoned hope of travel. In opposition, I grew up energetic, outgoing and a world traveler.

I was joyful mother had found her way to Bali.

Upon my return home, I scheduled a facial. I went to my usual lady, who knew nothing of my travels or personal life as I enjoy quiet meditation during facials. This was not to be.

With eyes closed, I felt an energy rush when she touched my left arm. Purple lights went off in my head. My body was tingling. Afterwards, I asked her what had happened, referencing only the purple light. Avoiding eye contact, she told me, “Your mother contacted me when I touched your left arm and energy began to flow through you. She told me to tell you she had a blast. She felt very important and it was the nicest thing you have ever done for her.”

I was stunned and at a loss for words. I felt love flowing between mother and myself.

I am looking forward to Mother’s Day secure in the knowledge a mother’s love never dies.”


Deadly Sins of Gift Buying
May 4, 2015


With spring and summer comes many occasions to buy gifts or presents. It seems that there are many more birthdays during this time of year. From Weddings, showers, baby gifts, graduations, birthday gifts, get well, retirement, or anniversary occasions, a gift needs to be bought.

Gift buying can be a resentful chore or a fun experience. I have some tips so you never make a faux pas and break even one of the ‘deadly sins of gift buying’.

Here are the sins:

Something that says to the person they are fat.

This includes gym memberships, a trainer, or a subscription to a diet plan. If the person requests this gift, it is still dicey and you are treading on thin ice.


Something that says they are old.

This includes wrinkle creams, makeovers, or AARP membership. (My own company’s menopause pajamas can be a wonderful gift when presented as ‘travel pajamas’).

Something that says they are not very smart.

This includes beginning classes in anything, Rosetta Stone, on-line courses, or books they have never shown an interest.

Re-gifted anything.

If you didn’t like it why would anyone else? You can rationalize all you want!

Now if the recipient of your gift has expressed complete desire for any of the items from the sins that may be interpreted as fat, old or dumb, buy it. Be aware it still carries a risk component.

Successful Gift Buying Tips:

Wedding, baby showers, wedding showers gifts will be well received are those you buy from their registry. Sounds boring but it is safe.

Graduations, retirement gifts can be fun or practical. For graduates I like an electric teakettle with a supply of soup, noodle packages, hot chocolate etc. presented in a laundry bag. For retirees I like a collection of flip-flops or hats in a personalized bag or basket.

For Birthdays in the summer I like beach stuff. Big body towels, big rubber toys, squirt guns etc. presented in a beach bag.

For anniversaries I like special food or wine items. Something consumable because if it is a 25th, 30th, 35th, 40th, 45th, or 50th party, they really don’t need some THING!

Get-well gifts are always a tough gift. If they are recovering or not has to be weighed before you buy. Here a film DVD is safe.

Do you have any gift-buying sins or gift buying suggestions?